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Originally published December 11 2007

Depression, Osteoporosis Correlation Misreported by Junk Science Media, Ill-Informed Health Researchers

by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, NaturalNews Editor

Conventional medical researchers around the world are scratching their heads over new research published in the Archives of Internal Medicine that shows a strong correlation between depression and osteoporosis. Amazingly, none of them apparently have the presence of mind to consider the simple, common cause behind both conditions: Chronic vitamin D deficiency.

This new research found that 17 percent of women with depression showed thinner hip bones, while only 2 percent of non-depressed women showed the same thinness of hip bones. The mainstream media is reporting on the study in articles like this one at the BBC:

The more idiotic media outlets are even reporting that depression causes osteoporosis. See this article in The Hindu:

Note that the study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine makes absolutely no causal relationship between depression and osteoporosis. It only points out a correlation. Leaping to the conclusion that one disease actually causes another disease is a common error of intellectually challanged journalists who have no understanding of basic logic or the difference between causation and correlation. The truth is that many news reports that claim one disease "causes" another are blatantly wrong: Most of these correlated diseases simple have a common root cause.

Note: You can listen to my Health Ranger Report Podcast on this topic right now by downloading this free MP3 file: (lo-fi MP3 format, 56kbps)

This one-hour recording is also available as part of a six-CD audio set containing the first 8 Health Ranger Report audio programs, which was just launched today: (hi-fi audio CD format)

The common cause behind these diseases

Depression and osteoporosis share a common cause: Chronic vitamin D deficiency. A lack of vitamin D in your body will make you depressed. It will also cause your bones to become brittle, leading to a diagnosis of osteoporosis. Vitamin D, you see, is necessary for the body to successfully use calcium, and if you don't have sufficient levels of vitamin D in your body, you can take all the calcium you want and you'll never boost bone mineral density.

The vast majority of Americans (and Canadians and Brits, for that matter) are chronically deficient in vitamin D. Estimates range anywhere from 60 percent to 75 percent of the population, depending on whom you ask and which geographic region you're talking about. People who live closer to the equator (in Southern U.S. states, for example, or parts of Australia) get more sunlight and therefore have lower rates of vitamin D deficiency. People who live in rainy climates where clouds block the sun most of the year have much higher rates of vitamin D deficiency.

Vitamin D deficiency also strongly promotes breast cancer, prostate cancer and other cancers. And wouldn't you know it: Breast cancer rates are lowest in Southern U.S. states. Depression rates, at the same time, are highest in Seattle and similar places where clouds block out the sun.

To say that depression "causes" osteoporosis is remarkably ignorant. It's a mistake that a seventh-grade science student might make on a school paper, but I would hope that adult medical research and news reporters would at least be intelligent enough to get past this simple logic error. Saying that depression "causes" osteoporosis is as silly as claiming that depression causes cancer, or that osteoporosis causes cancer. All three of these have the same common cause.

The Flat Tire Diagnosis

Let me give you an example of how conventional medicine might report on certain car problems. Let's say you're driving down the interstate at 75 miles per hour and all of a sudden your car suffers a tire blowout. Certain symptoms start to appear:

• Your car pulls to the right
• There is a strange flapping sound coming from underneath the car
• Your car suffers a reduction in fuel efficiency
• Your ride suddenly becomes bumpier

Now, if this situation were examined by the same medical researchers looking at this correlation between osteoporosis and depression, they would first have names for these symptoms:

• Your car being pulled to the right would be called, "Right's Disease"
• The strange sound coming from underneath your car would be called, "Flapping Disease"
• The reduction in fuel efficiency would be called, "Hypofuelenemia"
• The ride becoming bumpier would be called, "Comfort Deficiency Syndrome" or CDS

Now then, these medical researchers would document that Right's Disease is always present at the same time that you have Comfort Deficit Syndrome. Therefore, they would conclude that Right's Disease is CAUSED by Comfort Deficit Syndrome!

Instead, of fixing the flat tire, they would proceed to prescribe numerous fixes to treat all the various symptoms. Right's Disease, for example, might be "treated" with a giant piece of duct tape that pulls the steering wheel to the left.

Flapping Disease could be eliminated by using radiation therapy to destroy your ear drums (so you no longer hear the flapping noises). Once you are deaf and can no longer hear the flapping sound, you would be considered to be in "remission."

Hypofuelenemia could be "treated" by injecting high-grade fuel additive into your car to make up for the loss of fuel efficiency. (The high-grade fuel additive, of couse, would be manufactured by Big Pharma.)

Comfort Deficiency Syndrome could be treated with powerful narcotics that take your mind off the bumpy ride. (Never mind the fact that it would also make you a terrible driver. One-third of auto accidents today are already caused by people on medication...)

In all this, the true underlying cause of these problems -- the flat tire -- would be utterly ignored. Why fix the flat tire when they can make so much money managing the "symptoms" of those diseases over many years?

Why vitamin D is never mentioned

There is a great reluctance in both conventional medicine and the mainstream media (which is largely funded by drug ads, after all) to admit that a nutrient has any importance whatsoever in the prevention of disease. Modern medicine likes to pretend that nutrition has absolutely no role in human health; that diseases are largely a matter of luck; and that only expensive pharmaceuticals (not nutrients) can prevent or treat any disease.

The idea that a nutrient like vitamin D -- available free of charge from sunlight -- might actually prevent depression, osteoporosis and cancer all at the same time is downright horrifying to conventional medicine. How would doctors, hospitals and drug companies handle the loss of tens of millions of revenue-generating patients if people suddenly learned the truth about vitamin D and started preventing all three of these diseases at home, without a prescription, and without paying any fees whatsoever?

Conventional medicine doesn't like to admit that sunlight has any healing powers whatsoever. In fact, it goes out of its way to try to scare people into avoiding the sun, claiming the sun actually causes cancer, and that everybody should wear sunscreen all the time -- a product that almost always contains numerous chemicals that actually do promote cancer!

Conventional medical researchers are almost always funded by commercial interests, too, meaning they're not really interested in looking for free of natural cures for disease. They're looking for a way to scare the public into getting more disease "screenings," taking more pills and submitting to more invasive medical tests so that patients can be diagnosed and then "treated" with high-profit prescription drugs. It's all about recruiting patients into their profitable medical scam where diseases are never prevented or cured but managed with a lifetime of extremely expensive pharmaceuticals.

To tell people the truth about vitamin D would cost Big Pharma billions of dollars in lost profits from treating all the diseases caused by vitamin D deficiency.

The height of medical stupidity

Now here's the most hilarious part about this whole story. The researchers involved in this study claimed that since antidepressants relieve "the symptoms of depression," they may actually help improve bone density!

Are you getting this? Let me rephrase this:

First, the researchers found a correlation between depression and osteoporosis.

Next, they believe that antidepressant drugs relieve the symptoms of depression.

Therefore, in their little distorted brains, they believe that taking antidepressant drugs may reverse osteoporosis!

It's nothing short of astonishing. Did these people actually make it through medical school? Did they fail logic class? How on earth did they leap to this ridiculous conclusion? And just as importantly, how did all the journalists working for U.S. News and World Report (and other mainstream media sources) take this quote seriously and not even question the basic logic assumption behind all this?

It just boggles the mind. And one reason it boggles the mind is because the women used in this study who were suffering from osteoporosis were, in fact, already taking antidepressant drugs!

Okay, so get this: The researchers somehow believe that taking antidepressants can reverse osteoporosis even while their own research shows that the women suffering from the worst bone loss were already taking antidepressants!

Geesh. Sometimes I have to just sit back and shake my head in amazement when I observe the idiocy in modern medical research. And then when the mainstream media takes this garbage and reports it as fact, I have to vigorously shake my head yet again like a 1980's heavy metal band riffing on a guitar solo. It's like all these people are just complete idiots. I don't mean that as a name-calling insult. I mean it as an accurate description of their lack of mental capacity. A personal really does have to be operating at an extremely low level of intelligence to reach the conclusions promoted by these medical researchers. And to think: This is the junk science that gets published in mainstream, peer-reviewed medical journals! Incredible...

If you want to hear more of my thoughts about how incredibly stupid medical researchers have become today, listen to my Health Ranger Report audio podcast: (lo-fi MP3 format, 56kbps)

The problems with modern medicine and the mainstream media

This reporting about the link between depression and osteoporosis brings up several important concerns:

1. The medical community is incapable of identifying the common nutritional causes behind correlated diseases, even when those causes should be obvious.

2. The mainstream media is incapable of accurate scientific reporting on the nutritional causes of disease.

3. Both mainstream journalists and medical researchers remain nutritionally ignorant.

4. The public is being routinely misled by the mainstream media on health issues.

Now, based on this reporting, you're going to have women suffering from osteoporosis who run out and get on antidepressants, thinking that the SSRI drugs will reverse their osteoporosis.

Understand: This is exactly what Big Pharma wants to accomplish with this news! The whole point of this exercise in junk science, lousy reporting and astonishing nutritional ignorance is to get more women to take more drugs. It's really as simple as that.

In order to accomplish that, they have to get the medical researchers, the mainstream media and members of the public to all play along and pretend that vitamin D has nothing to do with these diseases. They also have to get everybody to pretend that antidepressant drugs are a treatment for osteoporosis -- an idea that's utter nonsense and, in fact, may be the exact opposite of what's really true. Notice, for example, that the women in the study showing the lowest bone density were already on antidepressant drugs. So why didn't the mainstream media report, "Antidepressant Drugs Cause Osteoporosis?"

The answer, of course, is because that would hurt drug sales. So instead, they report, "Depression Causes Osteoporosis" and somewhere in the story they repeat the quote from the researchers claiming that taking antidepressant drugs might actually reverse osteoporosis!

Why are there so many idiots in medicine and the media today?

Sometimes, I'm just so astonished at the lack of intelligent thought in medicine and the media that I wonder if I've somehow been teleported to Planet of the Idiots where stupid people run everything. When I've said things like this in the past, some readers have complained that I'm sounding arrogant. So let me clarify: In no way do I mean to imply that I'm the smartest guy in the room. I'm not some intellectual genius. This is, in fact, my point: An intelligent high school graduate could see through the holes in the logic of these medical researchers and mainstream news reporters!

You don't have to be a genius to find the flaw in the logic of mainstream media stories covering health topics. This is what astonishes me so much: How on earth is nobody else noticing these fatal problems in medical research and mainstream media reporting? Why does this stuff just slip by? And why, by God, do the readers of all these newspapers just swallow all this information without a single skeptical thought?

This is what baffles me. I guess on the Planet of the Idiots, people just don't think to question anything they read in the newspaper. The internet, they're told, is where all the inaccurate information comes from. But newspapers and magazines? They only report solid facts!

Facts like depression actually causes osteoporosis. Or that if you take enough SSRI drugs, you'll reverse bone loss (even though all the women taking those drugs have the lowest levels of bone density). Or how about the fact that ADHD is a "real" disease requiring treatment with amphetamine stimulants? Or that sunlight will kill you?

There are all sorts of idiot "facts" promoted by the mainstream media today. What's truly hilarious in all this is that Big Pharma and the FDA claim their pharmaceutical system of medicine is entirely "evidence based." You heard that right: It's all based on rock-solid, scientifically proven evidence.

And if you believe that, I've got a bridge to sell ya.

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