Expert Interview: Doctors Are Not Taught to Look at Teeth – The Cancer/Mouth Connection
Dr Mike Godfrey
Dr Godfrey draws from his over 40 years of clinical experience to explain to us how 97% of breast cancers have an oral implication!
Dr Mike Godfrey offers us a no nonsense, detailed interview sharing the connection between cancer, particularly breast cancer, and oral health.
If it’s true that the information we grasp impacts the decisions we make, then you owe it to yourself and your loved ones to grasp the significance of oral health in the cause of breast cancer.
Questions Dr Godfrey addresses include:
- What impact do oral metals play in cancer?
- What can folks who have less than ideal health do?
- What other tools are available to more effectively screen for breast cancer than mammography?
Healthy Mouth World Summit
Guest: Dr Mike Godfrey
Doctors Are Not Taught to Look at Teeth: The Connection Between Cancer (Particularly Breast Cancer) and Oral Health
Will: The next expert to share their wisdom and experience with us here at the Healthy Mouth World Summit is Dr. Mike Godfrey. Dr. Godfrey is a medical doctor who has practiced medicine in New Zealand for the past forty years. In 1986, Dr. Godfrey established an environmental health and chelation clinic in New Zealand.
Dr. Godfrey has a long list of publications primarily on the relationship between heavy metals and various disease states. His work is, in part, for what we now understand as the basis for the genetic ability we each have to detoxify heavy metals from the body. In the past several years of practice, Dr. Godfrey has found a remarkable relationship between oral health and cancer, particularly breast cancer.
He is now semi-retired, and actively cultivating a berry farm in New Zealand. The title of Dr. Godfrey’s presentation today is “Doctors Are Not Taught to Look at Teeth: The Connection Between Cancer (Particularly Breast Cancer) and Oral Health.”
Okay, so, Dr. Mike Godfrey, welcome to the Healthy Mouth World Summit!
Dr. Godfrey: Thank you for inviting me!
Will: I am really excited to have you share your knowledge and experience here with us today. For all the Summit experts that we have on our Healthy Mouth World Summit, you offer a unique perspective as a medical doctor who has a strong awareness of the implications that oral health plays in the health of the whole person.
So, the title of your talk today is “Doctors Are Not Taught to Look at Teeth: The Connection Between Cancer (Particularly Breast Cancer) and Oral Health.
So, before we dive into our interview, can you please share with the listeners what you have come to understand the relationship between cancer, and in particular breast cancer and oral health is?
Dr. Godfrey: Probably the best way would be to tell you about a very renowned oncologist in Germany. He’s regarded as the most renowned oncologist in the twentieth century, Joseph Issels. He established basically integrative oncology. So, looking at the whole aspect of cancer as opposed to seeing a breast cancer or a colon cancer on legs, as it were.
Joseph Issels, he died at the age of 90 in 1998. BBC did a documentary on him some time before that in the 1970s. He only retired when he was 80. And even then, he probably carried on doing advice.
Now, a book was written on Joseph Issles in 2005. I got a copy of it because I wanted to find out something particular from his experience that spanned 50 years and over 12,000 patients, most of whom were deemed so-called “terminal.” So, they only came to his hospital after everything else had been tried and failed. He had a 120-bed hospital.
Now, in this book, there’s a whole chapter devoted to dentistry. And, he is quoted as saying that 97% of those 12,000 patients had a significant causal factor in teeth, jaw, and tonsils. And of course the tonsils drain the teeth and the jaw. And in his hospital, every patient would be referred to the dental department.
And, all root canals were taken out. All metal was removed. And remarkably, follow-up studies done on those patients showed that he had a success rate that was streaks ahead of anybody else. I don’t know rightly out of the 12,000…over 4,000 of the patients were brought in by ambulance. They were really terminal. And 42% walked out of the hospital again to live a number of years.
Now, that to me is a perfect example of how we should look at the whole aspect of cancer. When you look at cancer, it’s really a result of disorganized cell metabolism. So, the cells have ceased dying off, as it were, programmed apoptosis, as it’s called, where all the cells in our body are being replaced. The lining of the gut is completely replaced every 24 hours, we’re told. And if asked to put a radio tag in every cell in the body and put out a geiger counter, it would be going mad.
But, come back in a months time and it might go click-click-click-click, because most of those cells are different. The body looks the same. And over the years you get a few more wrinkles. But, every cell in that body has changed. So, there must be a blueprint that tells a cell that’s in the liver, “You’re a liver cell, and you’ve replaced as a liver cell.” If it’s the lung, it’s a lung cell. And it knows to recreate itself as a lung cell. But what happens with cancer is they lose that communication. And I think information transfer and communication is the way that eventually we’re going to go.
Those cells, you might say, revert back to being the primitive single cell swimming in the primordial sea that eats and divides to survive. So, a cancer cell is disorganized. And, instead of looking at destroying every single cancer cell with radiation or chemotherapy or cutting it out, doctors who are looking at why and how that occurred and addressing those factors, they will allow the body to communicate with those rogue cells and give them the information they need to revert back to normal.
And there have been some remarkable research studies over the past decades that show that this can happen. So, the cancer, to me, is just disorganized cells. And hoodlums, you might say, in the neighborhood. And getting them to behave is more Buddhist, you might say, as in we’re going to destroy the whole lot of you. And if we destroy the whole neighborhood, as well, we’ve got to do that. Okay?
Will: [Laughs] That makes sense. So, from your clinical experience and understanding, then, there is a direct correlation between oral health and this disorganized cellular activity that we call cancer in the body.
What is that connection? How have you come to understand the connection?
Dr. Godfrey: Very good question. Even in orthodox medical establishment, it’s well-accepted that there is a causal factor between oral bacteria, periodontal disease, and cardiac disease, for instance. That’s accepted. What they don’t look at is what could be causing the periodontal disease? And we then get into dentistry in a big way.
And I never even considered the teeth for the first 30 years, you might say, of my medical practice. It wasn’t until…What was it? Let’s say 1985 when suddenly the light came on. I was at a conference in San Francisco and there was a research dentist there who gave a presentation on mercury in teeth on dental amalgam. Hal Huggins, by name, from Colorado Springs.
And I came back from that conference. And one of the first patients I looked at was a woman suffering from terrible migraines. I knew her socially, as well, because I used to go fishing with her husband and her son. And, I had to regularly go with a syringe of pasadena because she’d be at home with a bucket by the bed and the blinds drawn.
Well, Lisa came to see me and I said, “Open your mouth for a minute.” And, lo and behold, a mouth full of metal. And I handed her Hal Huggins’ book It’s All in Your Head. And bless her, she went away and did exactly what we are not meant to do. She read the book and said, “This is me!” She picked up the phone, rang up local dentists, and said, “Dick, I want all of my amalgams removed,” which, he, of course, was only too happy to do.
Fortunately — incredible, but fortunately — she didn’t have many adverse effects from all that exposure to mercury. And that was the last migraine she ever had. She’s never had one since. What’s more, her son, who had always been a bit of a wingy lad, at the time he was 12 or 13, and he had a few fillings. And she said to him, “Allister, you’re going to have your fillings removed, too.”
Well, she showed me the next term school report where all his teachers said, “What’s happened to Allister?! From being in the bottom third of the class in everything, he was either first, second, or third. And he’d gotten to be a really good young man.
There was a dramatic change, and that really got me interested. And, from then on, I looked at all my patient’s teeth, especially the middle-aged, and realized what effect it could have on people, how it affects overall health. And it really is incredible what it can do.
Chronic, low-dose exposure to mercury affects every system in the body without fail. So, it depends really on your genetic weak link, as it were, as to what system is going to be the predominant one. What is going to be the complaint that you take to the doctor? Unfortunately, most of the patients have so many complaints, they make a list of them, and write them down. Most of them complain of short-term memory loss. And they don’t want to leave out just that one symptom that might get that doctor to be able to find what’s wrong.
But, if you go to a doctor with that little bit of paper, every medical student that’s taught this, it was a French doctor that said it first of all, “[Speaks French],” the sick person with a little paper, they’re neurotic. That’s it. You’re neurotic if you go to the doctor with a long list of bits and pieces. So, let’s look at what it does.
First of all, the nervous system. If you look at the manufacturers safety data sheet for amalgam, in the small print, they list the adverse effects of chronic exposure to mercury. It mainly affects the limbic brain, which is the part of the brain immediately above and behind the nose, you might say. It’s our most primitive part of the brain. It deals with all basic functions, your mood, your memory, appetite, metabolism, all these functions. But, if we look at how that affects, and you can get panic attacks, anxiety. So, the sympathetic system is boosted. So, anxiety, depression, panic attacks, short-term memory loss. These are very common.
And when I started looking at my patients, chronic fatigue was bone-weary fatigue. The trouble is, again, there’s no laboratory test for chronic fatigue. You know when you’re stuffed. You know when you can’t do things. And to be told by a doctor, “Oh, you just need to get out and do more,” it’s not going to help.
Irritability, short fuse, the mercurial dentist, “What’s wrong with amalgam?!” Irritability. This is classic. Sadly, one of the problems can be irrational, illogical violence, including violence to oneself in the form of suicide. “Now, it’s the time. Yes,I’m going to go kill myself.”
And Hal Huggins gave a very dramatic example of this of a patient who came to him. This woman was apparently driving out of town in her station wagon up into the hills. Sunny day. And she looked down at the seat beside her. And there was a letter that she hadn’t posted. And she suddenly realized she had been driving up into the hills where there was a tight bend, and you could very easily drive off into space, as it were. And this is where she was going. And if she hand’t seen that letter, it would have been a completely inexplicable, terrible accident.
She stopped, turned, and came back here and got in his hands and had a moment. So, violence to oneself is the risk. And patients who have a tendency towards this need to be very carefully watched by a team of doctors and dentists. That’s the nervous system.
And then, if we look at the blood, every time you breathe in mercury from fillings, every time you breathe in, 80% of it doesn’t come back. It goes through the lungs, into the blood, and there, covertly, it does some quite nasty things. It binds to hemoglobin. Now, hemoglobin is a smart molecule. It picks up oxygen from the lungs, takes it to the tissues, drops it off, picks up carbon dioxide, and drops it off back in the lungs. It’s actually got four hands, you might think, that it can do this.
But, if that red blood cell going past the lungs meets an atom of mercury, mercury binds to the hemoglobin. And that red cell might only carry 50% of the oxygen that it previously did. But, that won’t be picked up by the laboratory because they only do total hemoglobin. They don’t look at what percentage is oxygenated.
Work done at Colorado University last century showed that the oxyhemoglobin levels of people with chronic fatigue and a mouthful of metals could be down 20% or 30%! That’s the equivalent of having a liter of blood missing! That can make you feel a bit battered, a bit fatigued. That’s one thing it does. That’s important for cancer because cancer thrives in low oxygen states. Otto Warburg told us that many years ago, the Nobel Price winner.
The other thing it does, it kills white blood cells, lymphocytes. Now, when the laboratory does a white cell count, they’re all very dead. They’ve been stuck on a slide, fixed in alcohol, and stained. So they’re very dead. They assume they were alive when they were in you. Again, work done by Hal Huggins — and he told me about umpteem years ago, and I pestered him for nearly ten years to get it published, which eventually he did in 2007 in Explore as part as a sort of wider review — they did an interesting thing in this review. They cultured lymphocytes in the normal culture medium. In one batch, they exposed to the amount of mercury that is found in the blood of people with amalgam fillings that is deemed totally and utterly harmless by all regulatory agencies, health departments, etcetera. But, a fourth died. Only three percent of the white blood cells had died in the control. Eighty percent had died in those exposed to mercury.
Now, that was probably since 2007. They’d already shown in many hundreds of patients where they took blood and took down straight away the white cell layer off and stained them with propidium iodide, which is a viability stain. And they’d showed that a significant proportion, 40%, were just floating around in the blood doing nothing.
This fitted in with my thinking, especially when I read a paper in 1993 published in New Yorker Academy of Science where they looked at patients with breast cancer. And they looked at NK, natural killer cell. That’s a lymphocyte. Natural killer, NK cells, which are very important to our immune system and for cancer, because the NK cell basically finds these rogue cells and bumps them off. But, in order for that to happen, the NK cells, there have to be enough of them and they have to be active or viable. A dead policeman’s not much good. He may be on the beat, but he’s not much good.
And, in this paper, they looked at women with breast cancer. And those whose NK cells were active had a 47% survival compared to only 5% survival in those whose NK cells were inactive. That came out in ’93. Another paper in The Lancet in 2000, they also looked at NK activity and showed in cancer — I think it was in cancer of the colon — again, NKs that were active, the patients survived far better than those where they were inactive.
And all I would say to this is instead of active and alive or dead, and if we know that mercury kills NK cells and we know that amalgam is the biggest source of mercury vapor according to WHO, then we have to look at teeth and mercury if we’re looking at patients with cancer. So, that’s the blood.
Then we look at the gut. You swallow mercury in the saliva. And every time you swallow, if you’ve been chewing, there’s mercury coming out and going into the saliva. And I don’t remember the year, but it was some time ago. Anne Summers, her group in America showed that in both animals and in humans, mercury killed on average 70% of a so-called commensal bacteria in the gut, a huge colony of about over a kilo of bacteria in our gut that is essential for life because they do a lot of essential work. They break down the foods so that we can get the nutrients out of the food. Seventy percent of those have been wiped out. They get replaced by mutant superbugs that are mercury- and antibiotic-resistant organisms, including candida, the yeast, which is mercury-resistant.
So, if we’re going along with swallowing mercury in the saliva — which, by the way, according to German University of Tübingen, they took like 17,000 patients (or it might have been 1,700), a large number of people off the street and got them to chew on gum for a few minutes and spit into test tubes before chewing and after chewing — and they showed that the mercury in the saliva went up to quite high levels. The average was 11 parts per million.
Now, we produce between one and two liters of saliva every day. [Inaudible] Tap water is illegal at 5. So, it ain’t 0.5. We’re swallowing highly illegal levels of contaminated water and saliva, which is poisoning our gut. And, of course, we’re passing it out in the urine. We’re passing it out in the feces. So, that gets into the sewage works. But, of course, most of the mercury in the sewage work comes from dental offices and their waste water.
And, ironically, the mercury in the treatment ponds is killing the bacteria in the ponds. So, it’s making it a lot harder for the treatment and the sewage works to deal with all the effluent that we’re putting into them. So, I think I’ve covered what mercury does to affect our health. There are more specific things you might want to cover.
Will: Yeah. I’m wondering, is it only the mercury in teeth that affects health? Or are there other ways that these metals can affect people?
Dr. Godfrey: Yeah, that’s another good point. Mercury is the largest component of an amalgam filling. It’s, on average, fifty percent mercury with a powder of silver, tin, zinc, and copper in different proportions. And if you look at basic school chemistry, we know that if you put two or more different metals in a salt or acid solution, you get electrolysis. And the less noble metal will be corroded. It becomes a sacrificial anodes, as it were.
And anybody who has even one filling in their mouth, if they’ve got a piece of silver wrapping paper off of chocolate in their mouth, they’ll know immediately what oral galvanism is like because the aluminum — sorry, that you probably don’t understand the element I’m in — will instantly corrode because that metal and zinc are right at the bottom of the Electromotor Table with gold at the top. And all the other metals are strung out on this Electromotor Table, some being more noble than others, as it were. And the aluminum instantly starts to sizzle, as it were.
And, as one farmer’s wife told me after I had told her…She’d never done it. And I said, well try it. The next time she saw me, she said, “That was a dirty trick, Mike. It’s like putting my tongue on the electric fence.” Coming from the farmer’s wife, it was very good.
But we’ve got to look at the other metals. And, a porcelain crown would be bonded onto a metal base. The metal base is usually a non-precious alloy. And, it may have in it anything up to ten or more metals. There’ll be chromium. There’ll be nickel. There’ll be iron. There’ll be beryllium, chrome, cobalt.
And these metals will be corroded, depending on their position. Nickel will increase the corrosion of mercury because nickel is above mercury. Iron, again, [inaudible] got a brew of different electrical results. Actually, mercury takes nickel out. Iron takes mercury out. You get increased corrosion of all these metals. And these are transitional metals. And, they are important in causing damage, including cancer.
And a paper came out in 2006 by John Ionescu, professor Ionescu of Tübingen University, I think, in Germany. It was published in Neuroendocrinological Letters, NEL. They did an interesting study looking at twenty breast cancers compared to eight benign lumps. So they looked at tumors. Twenty cancers, eight benign, fresh tumors. And they looked at the metals. And they found statistically highly significant levels of iron, nickel, chromium, zinc, cadmium, mercury, and some lead. Now, all those ones apart from lead are commonly used in dentistry. Nickel is a known carcinogen! These are widely used.
Let’s see, it was 1996, Health Canada finally released the findings of a commissioned investigation into mercury vapor from amalgam. And the researchers looked at industrial safety levels for mercury vapor and compared them to the known, published results that have shown that mercury does come off fillings, even in dental journals. But, then the dental journals say the levels are so infinitesimally small that they’re insignificant. And it’s only with modern and sophisticated instruments that it can be detected.
Well, they actually did a proper comparison. Dr. Richardson and his team showed that you would reach your so-called “tolerable” daily intake of mercury vapor with four average fillings in a 70-kilo adult. And only one in a small child, which is a little bit embarrassing. And, Health Canada sat on this for nine months before they finally released it.
And they were persuaded by the dental industry and the insurance industry that they had to have a stakeholder’s meeting on this very important finding. And at the stakeholder’s meeting, top lawyers scared the living daylights out of the bureaucrats. And what was going to be a directive was changed to an advisory, which has no teeth. (You see, there’s a pun!)
The advisory said, “It is inadvisable to put amalgam in the teeth of pregnant women or breastfeeding women or in small children or with other metals in the mouth or in people with kidney disease or in people with sensitivity to mercury without defining how that is supposed to be made. Can you be sensitive to arsenic? I mean, if you’re not, you can have some every day! It won’t do you any harm! Mercury is equally accumulative that you’ve got to be allergic to it or sensitive to it. A poison is a poison.
That advisory has been basically ignored. Dentists still put amalgam in mouths with other metals or other metals in the mouth while there’s amalgam there without telling the patient we should take the amalgam out first. And it’s still being done.
If you put those metals in the mouth, especially if it’s just one teeny bit of gold, one little gold cap is going to increase the amount of corrosive mercury fivefold by consensus. So, you might have four fillings. Put a gold cap in. You’ve got the equivalent of twenty fillings as far as the mercury coming out.
And this is basic science. Now, as far as I know, nobody has replicated Ionescu’s initial study. And, you’ve gotta get funding for these things. But they’ve shown that those metals were present in breast cancer, and they weren’t there in benign ones. To me, that was a very important paper confirming all that.
Now, the ultimate stupidity thing is to actually shove bits of these metals in the breast. They’re doing it! They’re putting little stainless steel markers into the breast where they want to focus in the future. So, they’re actually putting these little bits of metal in the breast. And how insane is that?!
Will: Okay, so, clearly intraoral metals influence cancer. You’ve covered that very well here. Let’s shift gears a little bit. What’s your opinion on root canals?
Dr. Godfrey: [Laughs] Oh, dear. Well, I found out about root canals in 1989. I went to a conference in Colorado. And a German doctor gave a paper there. And I had to face up to the fact that I had two root canals. Both of them were on colon/large intestine acupuncture meridians. Each tooth is on a separate acupuncture meridian. And that does have a bearing.
I didn’t want to have a double-barreled shot gun pointed at my colon, as it were. So, I put my money where my mouth was, and literally had those two root canals removed. I finished up with an American bridge and a New Zealand bridge on the other side. And, that was ’89.
Since then, I’ve lost 6 teeth. The only way of keeping them was to have root canals. So, I feel comfortable about telling patients, “Look, I’ve read the research. And there’s been a lot more since 1989. This is what I did.” So, I can give my patients advice rather than saying, “Oh, yeah, I’ve got a root canal. But, I’m an M.D. I can cope with that. M.D. stands for marma deity. And we can cope.”
I had mine removed. And, I’m very glad I did. Now, hundreds of years ago, the then-president of the American Dental Association, a man by the name of Weston Price — you might have heard the name — was regarded as one of the greatest researchers of the twentieth century into Nutrition and Physical Degeneration, the name of his book.
He did a lot of incredibly good research on root canals. And he discovered and confirmed that it was impossible to sterilize a tooth, keep that tooth sterile in the mouth. Within days, the bugs in the mouth are moving into the tooth.
Now, the tooth appears solid. But, the molar has over a mile of fine dentin tubules running from the pulp chamber to the outside. Bugs move in and take up residence in that condominium. They can line up about six abreast. So, there’s a lot of room. And there’s no oxygen in that tooth. So, they become anaerobic bacteria. And possibly also fungi. Fungus is very, very toxic. They produce fungal toxins to kill the competitors for the food source.
So, fungi are used to make a lot of antibiotics to kill bacteria. Now, you don’t know what fungus is going to move into a tooth. Most of the fungi that are investigated are far too toxic to produce anything that can be used safely. Even penicillin is a fungal toxin, it’s a mycotoxin. Tetracycline.
Now, Weston Price didn’t have the laboratory equipment to identify what the toxins were that came out of the root-filled tooth. We know that if you put a human root-filled tooth under the skin of a rabbit, it would die within a few days. If you took it out, put it under the skin of another rabbit, it died. You boiled it, put it under the skin of another rabbit, it died. Autoclaved it, died. Eventually he found one rabbit, a big buck rabbit, that didn’t die. It lost about a third of it’s weight. But, hundreds and hundreds of rabbits died from root canals. And, they say that’s why there are not many rabbits in Ohio.
But, he couldn’t identify what they were. Now, my old friend Hal Huggins…I call him old because he’s eight months older than me. So, once a year, he’s older than me. He pestered Boyd Haley for years. And Boyd Haley was Chair of Chemistry at Kentucky University, and one of the world’s leading authorities on mercury in the brain.
He pestered Boyd to replicate the work done 100 years before on root canals. And eventually, Boyd said, “Okay. Send me root canals.” And word went out. I sent two from New Zealand. It happened to be from an eighteen-year-old married girl dying of leukemia. She’d been fine until she was sixteen-and-a-half. And she had two front teeth smashed in by a hockey ball, and had been root-filled. And within three months, she was in hospital with leukemia. I sent her two teeth over. Unfortunately, we were too late. And she died.
But, standard laboratory tests were done on these teeth. They’re dropped into sterile water. The water was tested, and then they were taken out and dropped into another dilution. So, by the third dilution — I think there were 200 teeth that were tested — by the third dilution, there was a difference. Twenty-five percent, in round figures, by then were not too bad. Fifty percent would still make people quite ill. And the remaining twenty-five percent were lethal. It would kill you.
In fact, Boyd Haley was stunned that some of these were several magnitudes more toxic than arsenic, and, in fact, more toxic than botulinus, which was, by then, regarded as the most powerful toxin. Boyd had his own root canal removed. And his wife, he had hers removed. So, once you see the research, you start to think that maybe it’s not all that wise to have a root canal.
I’ve seen too many patients over the last twenty-five years who have cancer and have a root canal. I’ve also seen some patients where we’ve removed the root canal, tidied up a few things — scars and removed amalgam, put them on a proper diet and antioxidant supplements — and it was a totally different outcome. One of the first was a man who came to me with colon cancer. They’d removed the tumor three years before. They said they’d got it all. Two years later, they said, “Oh, sorry. It’s back again, and it’s in your liver.”
He had two tumors in the liver, 6 centimeters and 8 centimeters in size. They tried injecting chemotherapy up the arteries directly into the liver and the tumors. That didn’t work. They then put needles into the tumor and pumped in liquid nitrogen to try and freeze them. And that didn’t work. So, eventually they told him, “Sorry, go home. There’s nothing more we can do.”
Well, he came to me a very sick old man. And at first I didn’t think there was much I could do. But I thought, “Well, he’s still alive. So, let’s see what we can do.” I started him off on various tests. Root canal was actually on the colon meridian. We got that out and went into a few other things.
After six months, he said to me, “Mike, I’ve always competed in the Master’s Swimming championships. And the nationals are coming up in three months here in New Zealand. Do you think I ought to register?” And, I said, “Of course! Go for it!”
Well, he did. And he won three gold medals. Four months later, he said to me, “The World Champs are coming up in Melbin, Australia next year. Should I register?” [Laughs] I said, “Of course you should!” He registered for it. He won another couple gold medals! And he came back. And, I guess there wasn’t a goal or objective. And he peacefully sort of went downhill and died in his sleep.
So, okay, you can say the man died. But, he lived for another 17 months, I think it was, and had a good quality of life. And what did he achieve? It gave him a new short lease of life. But I’ve seen other patients, including breast cancer patients, dealing with the dental side. It materially changes the prognosis.
Will: Wow. So, I have two questions just burning here to ask you. I want to back up to mercury for a moment and ask you how do we detox mercury? That’s a tough one, I know. But from your experience, how do we approach that?
Dr. Godfrey: I wish I knew. There is a whole range of different detoxing modalities. Fortunately, it seems that when the body is given information and the toxic load is decreasing, then you’re getting benefit. You don’t have to get rid of every last bit of mercury or nickel or chromium. If the body is helped and if we have protected amalgam removal, it is a combined integrative approach where you’ve got doctors and dentists working together so you have safe amalgam removal, safe removal of root canals. And there are protocols.
We’ve got international Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology, the IAOMT. We’ve got Hal Huggins’ website, as well, where you can access good information as to how to do this. There’s a range of chemicals that can remove mercury and other metals. And these are still being worked on to get some of them less toxic themselves. The older ones like dimercaprol, they’re quite nasty in the side effects. And even Dimaval or DMPS, dimercaptopropanol sulfonate, can be quite toxic.
Some patients can’t cope with those. And we have to look at the hurdles. Spirulina can be useful. Coriander can be useful, cilantro…These combined with good antioxidants. Mercury depletes selenium, glutathione. So, replenishing the selenium, I think, is very important because our main antioxidants depend on it. Glutathione depends on selenium.
I would say that everybody needs to have large amounts of vitamin C. When I’m talking about large amounts, I’m talking about a number of grams in a day, not milligrams. I personally take six grams a day — half in the morning, half at night. Linus Pauling took twelve grams a day for thirty years or more! And he and all his detractors…He’s the ripe age of 93. I remember meeting him at a conference when he was 92. And, you’d think the man was a year older than 70, if that. Quite amazing, wonderful old man. And, so, vitamin C is very important.
The B vitamins are often depleted, and it’s very important to have those. We’ve got a number of protocols that can be used.
Will: So, I’m wondering what protocols do you use to help discern early stages of disease in the body? I saw a video of yours on the IAOMT page about thermography. And I’m wondering if you will talk about thermography a bit?
Dr. Godfrey: Okay. This is a very useful screening modality because as far as breast health is concerned, there’s nothing else that we can use to monitor it. Thermal imaging has been around for forty years. But, it’s only for the last few years we’ve had very sophisticated cameras, a spinoff from the military, the heat-seeking cameras, combined with modern computers. So, the whole scenario has changed.
I’ve been doing thermal imaging now for ten years. And initially I bought a couple of American cameras. And, then I switched recently to German ones. And the German system with the computerized one is more advanced. I found that if we look at patients’ breasts with a thermal imaging camera, we get a map of the blood vessels and the amount of heat that’s being put out.
Now, any cancer anywhere in the body has to grow beyond a pinhead size, has to develop new blood vessels to feed it. So, in a more superficial cancer like in the breast, those blood vessels will produce heat. And the heat-seeking camera will pick it up. And so you can do a basic thermal imaging of the breast. And we have different angles — front, oblique, and side.
And, ideally every woman should have a thermal mammogram done before the first pregnancy, just to give an idea of how blood vessels look because they all have slight differences. So, we look for symmetry, temperatures within normal range, both breasts. We look at symmetry of blood vessels.
And if we find that there’s one breast where there’s an area that has a raised temperature or an unusual unilateral blood vessel complex, we would then say, “Look, what are you doing in your life? What stresses are you under? What are you eating? What are you not eating?” And discuss possible changes in lifestyle.
We’ll also look at the dental side and give patients information so they can start to read and understand what the implications could be. Depending on how big the difference is between the blood vessels in one side and the other and the temperatures, we might get that patient to come back in six months time, a year, or if it looks more serious, three months.
And, during that three months, I would probably put them on iodine, as well, because of the importance of breast health. And, hopefully, after three months, there’ll be some improvement. If, however, there was a deterioration, we then refer patients for structural investigations, which could include ultrasound, could include even mammogram, even though we now have very, very powerful evidence published in the top medical journals that mammography at best is going to miss 20%, and will have the same amount of false positives. So, it’s now seen as a far less reliable screening modality than previously promoted.
But, we do have to have structural investigations. And, one of my earlier patients eight years ago, she had a very abnormal thermogram. I referred her for a mammography and ultrasound. She was told, “Perfectly all right! Don’t worry. Thermal imaging is useless.” And she didn’t come back after three months. She only came back after a year following reminders.
Her thermogram was a lot worse. It was bad enough at first, but it was a lot worse. She had another mammogram. Normal. Just some fibrocystic things. So, I went around to the radiology fella. And I said to the radiologist, “Look, if this woman hasn’t got breast cancer, I might as well send the camera back to America and try to get my $40,000 back. She’s got breast cancer. She has to.”
And, they decided to send her off for an MRI. They found an 8mm tumor, which, when removed, was an invasive cancer. That was the first.
The second one, not long after that, they sent off to a breast surgeon who thought that she could feel something. So, the woman said, “Well, go in and take it out, whatever you’ve found.” Again, it was an invasive cancer after repeated normal mammograms.
It doesn’t always happen that way. But, it happens sufficiently for me to realize that thermal imaging is a very good investigative tool together with the other investigations that we’ve got. And it has this unique ability that we can use it to monitor progress. Nothing else can, especially in dense breasts, young women with dense breasts, where mammography is useless. Absolutely!
You might say it’s a toss of a coin, 50-50 with very dense women’s breasts. But with thermal imaging, if there’s no obvious unilateral heat or abnormal blood vessels and a persistently normal one is every two years, then it’s very unlikely that you’re going to develop breast cancer.
And this fits in so well. It’s very user-friendly. We’ve been quite happy to sit in an air conditioned room for half an hour and have a picture taken and no touch. And, it’s very good. Unfortunately, I’ve got to admit that we are our own worst enemies in this respect.
Around the world, there are different systems that are being developed. Each system has basically the same function. But, they have different methods, different protocols. There’s no standard. And there are a number of us around the world that are working in this to try and get international standardization.
And it’s been very frustrating because you get a company that’s invested a lot of money, produced equipment, the software…they believe that their system is robust. They want everybody else to use their system, naturally. They want to market it. And then on the other side of the globe, you’ve got the German system set up — and the one that I think is the best — they want others to use their system. How do we get everybody to sit around a table? And then you’ve got professors who say that thermal imaging for the breast is useless because there’s a lack of standards. And I agree with that. But it’s still a valid investigation. We need to get consensus somehow as to what we should be doing.
Will: So, clearly it plays a role. So, what advice would you give to the hundreds of thousands of middle-aged, elderly people nowadays who are chronically below par or chronically ill? What’s your advice to these folks?
Dr. Godfrey: Well, as I said earlier, Health Canada said that the maximum tolerable amount of mercury vapor would come from four average fillings in a 70- kilo adult. And, Mark Richardson, who admitted to me…I was talking to him afterwards. We met, and he said, “We knew this was a conservative conclusion because they only had the mandate to look at mercury vapor.”
They didn’t look nor consider the mercury that gets swallowed in the saliva. They didn’t have a mandate to look at the mercury that was going directly through the mucous membrane of the mouth up through the nose into the brain, which it does. It’s well documented. So, they were only looking at the mercury vapors. So, four fillings.
Then, at that time, they didn’t have any knowledge of the genetic factor. There is a genetic factor. And there’s a blood test that can be done to show whether you have an increased risk or a decreased risk of accumulating mercury. It’s called apolipoprotein E, ApoE genotyping.
And, together with a colleague, I published the first paper on this showing the connection between Apo-E genotyping and mercury. And it was published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Diseases in 2003. And the very first paper that came out on Apo-E and Alzheimer’s was by Allen Rose’s group at Duke University in 1998. So, it’s not all that old.
They showed that those who had ApoE-4 from both parents had a significantly greater risk of getting Alzheimer’s early onset, before the age of 70. We inherited ApoE-4 or ApoE-3 or ApoE-2 from each parent. So, there’s six possible combinations. Most people have ApoE-3 from both parents. But, if you’ve got 4-4 from both parents, about one percent or two percent of the population have a significant greater risk of getting Alzheimer’s at an early age.
Now, Rose and his group and others said it was a mystery why those with ApoE-4 got Alzheimer’s. But, again, thanks to my mentor Boyd Haley who told us that he knew….see, it’s not a mystery if you look at the chemistry. And if you look at the chemistry, he said, “Those who’ve got ApoE-4 have got a different amino acid in the structure. They’ve got arginine instead of cystine. Cystine is in the ApoE-2. And the ApoE-3 have got one cystine and one arginine.
Now, cystine has got the sulfur bond. And that can bind to mercury and take it out of the brain. Arginine doesn’t. And once Boyd told me that, I said, “Right. I’ll go back to New Zealand, and see if we can do ApoE-4.” And fortunately, it was available. So, we started doing this.
And once we got up to 250 patients who had symptoms that could be attributable to mercury, we found that there was a statistically significant increase in ApoE-4 in those. And, my colleague followed this up. We published the second paper three years later in 2006 where we looked in a general family practice of over 600 patients, and again confirmed that those who were suffering from chronic fatigue, depression, and memory loss, there was a significantly higher incidence of ApoE-4 than those who had ApoE-2. So, if you’re fortunate to choose your parents right and you’ve got ApoE-2, you can probably cope better with mercury than if you’ve got ApoE-4.
Again, the ApoE-4, if it’s in the family on both sides, there’s an increased potential. Vaccines cause damage resulting in neurological problems, ADHD and Autism Spectrum Disorders because of the E-4 and the mercury in the vaccines.
Plus, those infants, if they’ve got mothers with amalgam fillings and the good mothers are breast feeding, they’re pumping mercury in the breast milk into their babies. Thankfully, GlaxoSmithKline hasn’t yet caught on to this and said, “Ah, milk powder is mercury-free unlike breast milk.” Bless them.
I guess advice to patients who are chronically ill, seriously, look at teeth. And a lot of the real old patients a lot of the real old patients that I used to see, they had their teeth all taken out in the Depression years. It was almost a joke in New Zealand. Before you got married, a woman would say, “Oh, get your teeth out and you get a washing machine.” And for the man, “Get your teeth out, and get a suit before you get married.”
Those people that I was seeing in my medical practice in their seventies and eighties, if they were a new patient, I’d say, “Have you had anything wrong with you in the past?” “Oh, no. Oh, I broke my leg in ’48.” That sort of thing. Nothing until they got really old, whereas their children who were in their forties and fifties and sixties had a whole mass of chronic illnesses.
But then you see, here in New Zealand after the second World War, we socialized dentistry. You had the school dental nurses that were routinely drilling and filling. In 1968, a Health Department survey in this country revealed that twenty-one-year-olds at that time had an average of sixteen fillings! And fifteen-year-old teenagers already had an average of thirteen fillings. That was in 1968.
And in our experience, looking at 2,000 middle-aged patients, they’ve still got an average of eight to ten fillings, which is worth far more than the Canadian Health Department. A lot of people cannot afford to have dental work. It’s very expensive. To those people, I would say at least do your best to counter it by having a very good diet, to have at least 5 or 6 grams of vitamin C a day, to have some selenium, to have at least one B-vitamin, multi B-vitamin or something like that, to have plenty of the sulfur-containing foods, cabbage broccoli families. Sulfur will help to bind the mercury.
And if it gets too bad, you’ll just have to have your teeth extracted. But, as many teeth as possible that are viable because I found this especially with women. If they have all of their teeth out, after years of being exposed to metals in the mouth, that mercury will garnish the jawbone. And once the teeth are out, the bony ridge tends to melt away. And the denture will start sliding around and rubbing and causing ulcers, so they have to get another denture, and then a few years later, another denture. It’s a real pain. But, if you can keep a few teeth, especially in the lower jaw, then that can anchor a denture.
Will: That makes sense that we need to stress the bone, if you will, by chewing on it through our teeth in order to tell the bone, “We want you to stay here. So, keep remineralizing here. Keep strong.”
Dr. Godfrey: Yeah, I draw the analogy for patients, if you have a stream going through a farm. You’ve got the banks by the side and you’ve got willow trees in. And the farm gets sold and the new guy doesn’t really understand. He says, “Oh, take all those trees out.” Next year, floods come, the banks just wash away. The trees have been holding that bank.
Will: Wow. I really appreciate your time, Dr. Godfrey. This has been huge. Where can folks learn more about you and your work?
Dr. Godfrey: Well, they can’t! [Laughs] I retired from my registered medical practice when I turned 70. And I’ll be 75 shortly, God willing. I’m still working once or twice a day in my naturopathic work and also working with the thermal imaging, setting that up nationwide and working internationally with some colleagues.
But, I haven’t got a website. I’m not going to have one at this stage. I’m too old fashioned. Things like LinkedIn and Facebook and all this is a foreign language. I’m actually writing a book, or I have been writing a book for ten years. And one day that might get published. It’s going to be called What’s the Matter?
Will: Sounds great. What we’ll do is we’ll put a link. I know that you have some YouTube videos out there. So, we’ll put a link to those so the listeners can reference your work more.
Dr. Godfrey: Sure.
Will: Again, I really appreciate your time here, Dr. Godfrey. It’s been a pleasure to hear your influence, just bringing to light from the standpoint of a medical doctor and how you came into it is a very fun story.
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