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  Dr. Gerson showed us the path of the hero to wellness. He did not believe in incurable disease. He had tremendous faith in life. His lifetime work and dedication has been a precious tool for both patients and practitioners. From his personal experience, patients learn determination to heal, regardless of prognostics from the medical authorities. From his professional experience, doctors may learn integrity in their service to humanity. Dr. Gerson did not give up until he found the true cause of disease: toxicity and deficiency. Maya Nicole Baylac


"This therapy has cured many cases of advanced cancer."


The cure of advanced cancer by diet therapy: a summary of 30 years of clinical experimentation

by Max Gerson, M.D.
Gerson Institute, Box 535, Imperial Beach, California 92032

(1978 Publisher's Note. This is a lecture given by Dr. Gerson in Escondido, California, in 1956. Dr. Gerson died in 1959. More complete information on his therapy for advanced cancer may be found in his book A Cancer Therapy: Results of 50 Cases, by Max Gerson, 3rd edition, 1977, Totality Books, Del Mar, CA or from his daughter Mrs. Charlotte Gerson Straus at the Gerson Institute, Box 535, Imperial Beach, CA 92032. Socioeconomic and political perspectives are discussed in the book Has Dr. Max Gerson a True Cancer Cure? by S. J. Haught, 1976, Major Books, 21335, Roscoe Blvd., Canoga Park, CA 91304. - From

Thirty years of clinical experimentation has led to a successful therapy for advanced cancer. This therapy is based on the concepts (1) that cancer patients have low immuno-reactivity and generalized tissue damage, especially of the liver, and (2) that when the cancer is destroyed, toxic degradation products appear in the bloodstream which lead to coma and death from liver failure. The therapy consists of high potassium, low sodium diet, with no fats or oils, and minimal animal proteins. Juices of raw fruits and vegetables and of raw liver provide active oxidizing enzymes which facilitate rehabilitation of the liver. Iodine and niacin supplementation is used. Caffeine enemas cause dilation of bile ducts, which facilitates excretion of toxic cancer breakdown products by the liver and dialysis of toxic products from blood across the colonic wall. The therapy must be used as an integrated whole. Parts of the therapy used in isolation will not be successful. This therapy has cured many cases of advanced cancer.

"... Finally, I had a clinic. The patients saw that also the more advanced cases and even some terminal cases, very far advanced cases, could be saved. They brought me more and more of these terminal cases. I was forced into that. On the one side, the knife of the AMA was at my throat and on my back. I had only terminal cases. If I had not saved them, my clinic would have been a death house. Some of the cases were brought on stretchers. They couldn't walk. They could no longer eat. It was very, very difficult. So, I really had to work out a treatment that could help these far advanced cases. Again, I was forced into it.

... The physicians, including the family doctor, all told him that he could live only 4 to 6 weeks, especially since all bones of the pelvis were full of cancer. He looked terribly ill when he came to me. His wife brought him with a nurse. He had made his last will and did not expect to live. Now we cured that. It was especially difficult. I should like to thank his wife. She prepared the treatment with the greatest devotion. She was wonderful and we could rely on her. In a family where there is real devotion in the application of this treatment, we can even save these far advanced cases. Of course, we cannot save all of them but we can save more than we sometimes even consider possible. (Question from the audience: “How long did it take?”) In the urinary bladder, it didn't take but a few weeks and there was no longer any blood and pus, nor in the stools either. But in the pelvis there were hundreds of spots, and that takes a long time because the body transforms this cancer first into so-called osteoplastic areas, not an osteolytic process which is bone reducing. With my treatment more bone is produced. The body produces more bone, and then the hypertrophic bone is transformed into normal bone tissue. Then there is no more pain. Now the patient can get around and is even the manager of a company."

"Now, for the proof of this theory. I had the idea to make an animal experiment in which we connected two rats — one cancerous rat and one healthy one. We cut them open along the side and connected a blood vessel, then sewed them together: The blood from the healthy rat circulated in the sick one day and night and cleared up the sick body. Thus we showed that with a healthy normal metabolism you can cure cancer. ..."

Read the whole Dr. Gerson lecture here
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Here is an article from 1954, where Max Gerson draws this conclusion:
"Human beings have brought upon themselves the disease of cancer by their ungoverned self-indulgence, their urge for luxurious living, and increasing evils of our civilization."

Cancer, a problem of metabolism

by Max Gerson, M.D.
Translated from "Krebskrankheit, ein Problem das Stoffwechsels"
Medizinische Klinik No. 26, June 25, 1954, Munich, Germany

Dr. Max Gerson The purpose of the following article is to show, in broad outline, that cancer is not a problem of vitamins, hormones and enzymes, that it is not a problem of allergies, nor a variety of intermedial substances of metabolism or carcinogenic substances. It is not a question of some unknown virus infection and most certainly not a purely local cell problem, but an accumulation of numerous factors which proved damaging to the body and its metabolism over a long period of time.
Its cure is a basic process, embracing all the above factors and many others besides, by means of which total metabolism can be more or less re-established over a period of time.

It is generally known that in cancer, especially in advanced cases, all the various metabolic systems are impaired: the exchange of minerals, the symbiosis of intestinal bacteria, the reactivation of enzymes of oxidation, the circulation of vitamins, the breaking down of fats, proteins and to some extent carbohydrates.
All this becomes increasingly clear if we also examine serum and tissues. As evidence of the effectiveness of the metabolic therapy, a number of results are presented here, most of them advanced or hopeless cases. First the dietary problem shall be briefly described in its development and application to cancer.

J. Maisin,1 1923, and B. Fischer-Wasels,2 1929, were probably the first who abandoned the theory of local irritation and stressed the physiological basis of general tumor predisposition. Thereafter there was a tendency to take refuge in the old constitutional and diathetic doctrine (Reding3), Slosse,4 as is the case in diabetes, gout and tuberculosis. The compendium by F.L. Hoffmann,5 1937, gives a survey of world literature on the subject. In his statistical summary in the preface (page 15) he says:
"I am fully convinced that profound dietary influences in cancer are to be looked upon as a causative factor …"
but with reference to treatment he says (page 663): "it does not fall within my own province to make suggestions in any particular direction."

The monograph of W. Caspari6 gives a more condensed survey and specifically turns away from local causes, more in the direction of metabolism. — A decrease in calorie-intake as a fames cura was already familiar to the ancient physicians, and is described by Cornelius Nepos.7

Modern experimental studies on the effect of dietary restrictions have been carried out particularly by Albert Tannenbaum8 et al., and Larsen & Heston.11 Of Tannenbaum’s conclusions the following are valuable: "as yet no tumor has been found that does not respond to a restricted diet" and: "inhibition involved both a decrease in the total number of tumors and a delay in the average time of appearance."

Freund and Kaminer12 in 1937/38 presented practical suggestions for a special diet to be given to inoperable patients: avoidance of all animal fats and substitution of oil; in cancer patients restriction of carbohydrates, in sarcoma patients restriction of peptones; frequent enemas and, as an antiseptic, salol, menthol, and bismuth subsalycylate. They report that they had little success with inoperable patients.

Caspari and Ottensosser13 (1932) in experiments with animals found in frequent dietary changes a functional increase of the R.E.S. — De Raadt14 (1929/30) attempted to increase the alkalosis of the tumor with acids. Fischer-Wasels followed this conception in the main. He recommended little salt, sugar and water, no fats and, to increase acidity, he gave HCl, NH4Cl. Calc. Phosphate. Both investigators recommended the diet merely as a helpful supplementary treatment.

Of the many other dietary attempts in the treatment of cancer, most of them carried out by laymen or physicians using natural remedies, the following are worth mentioning: the old Irish yeast cure and the most recent use in Switzerland of chlorophyll or spinach juice. We have observed no basic results from the much-lauded grape cure. As the best preventive diet against cancer we may mention the Hunsa’s diet of food grown by organic gardening processes.15 These people remain healthy to an advanced age and cancer is unknown among them. On the other hand, Jese P. Greenstein.16 says: "preventing cancer means preventing human beings."

We believe that this brief survey will show how dietary treatment of malignant tumors has bogged down almost completely in the theoretical or experimental stage. Practical, systematic experiments with diseased human beings were almost always abandoned after a short time. (See the results of inquiries in Monatsschrift Fur Kebsbekampfung, 1936, No. 9 page 257.)

The fundamentals of my cancer diet are briefly:

Forbidden items: nicotine (tobacco), salt, sharp condiments, (only fresh or dried herbs are permitted), tea, coffee, cocoa, chocolate, alcohol, white sugar, white flour, candy, ice cream, cream, cake, nuts, mushrooms, soybeans and soy products, cucumbers and pumpkins, pineapples, all berries (except red currants), water to drink. Nothing canned, bottled, sulphured, frozen, smoked, salted or bleached. No fat, no oil, no salt substitutes, no bicarbonate of soda — either in food, toothpaste or mouthwash, no hair-dyeing (relapses have occurred after hair-dyeing).

Temporarily forbidden: (during the first months, especially at the beginning of the treatment): meat, fish, eggs, butter, cheese, milk.

Cooking utensils: pressure cookers may not be used, nor saucepans or other utensils of aluminum. Stainless steel, glass, enamel, earthenware, cast iron and pewter may be used. Two machines are needed for the preparation of juices: a.) a grinder, b.) a press. Machines which grand and press the food in one process are not to be used. This eliminates the customary juicers, juice mixers, centrifuges and electrical grinders and mixers which kill most of the oxidizing enzymes.

A selected number of fruits and vegetables with the highest possible K/Na quotient are given. Vegetables are cooked in their own juices without additional water. Foods should be eaten raw as much as possible, especially a mixture of grated apples and carrots, which are rich in enzymes in their natural combinations. The latter are necessary for the binding and inactivation of oxygen in the intestines. If it is not inactivated, dysbacteria follows, that is the development of the bacteria of putrefaction and fermentation.

As much fruit and vegetable juices as possible are to be taken, always freshly prepared in order to preserve enzymes and vitamins. Patients are given juices every hour, the total daily amount to equal as follows:

2x200 cc fresh calf’s liver juice

4x200 cc green leaf juice

5x200 cc apple and carrot juice

1x200 cc orange or grapefruit juice

All these juices are particularly rich in oxidizing enzymes, vitamins, hormones and important mineral combinations which the diseased organs cannot themselves manufacture for a long time. The large amount of liquid is of no importance because the detoxification process soon restores the circulatory mechanism and sufficiently regulates elimination. The importance of enemas is mentioned in the treatment book and in the preceding article.1 red., Oatmeal without milk but with brown sugar and fruit, is given for breakfast. Potatoes are given baked, mashed or as salad but without mayonnaise. Lemon or vinegar dressing only. The Hippocrates soup is given once or twice, and frequent servings of leafy salads and fruit salads or a combination of the two.

After six weeks the following additions: yoghurt or skimmed milk — one glass daily; pot cheese without salt or cream — one quarter or one half pound daily.

The result is as diet rich in potassium and the minerals of the K-group, low in sodiums and its group and rich in active vitamins, enzymes and hormones in their natural forms. At first the diet does not include animal protein, later small amounts are added, but fat and oil are kept at a minimum for a long time until recovery is complete. These restrictions are necessary primarily more to rid the damaged digestive tract of toxins, than to burden the diseased organs as little as possible. It also prepares the way for perenteral digestion of the tumor and its metastases, and later maintains the bread-down of tumor remnants, adhesions and scar masses. The digestive enzymes, pepsin, trypsin, lipase, etc. are needed for the parenteral digestion of cancer masses, and should not be used up in the ordinary digestive processes.

Medication for the first fortnight:
10% Potassium compound   10x4 teaspoons in juice
Lugols solution, half strength   6x3 drops in juice
Thyroid (Armour)   5x1 grain (1 grain – 1/16 gram)
Niacin   6x50 mg.
Crude Liver Extract, Lilly No. 352
injections daily (1 cc. Equals 10 units)
  3 cc. Plus 1 cc. Vit. B-12 (30 microgr.)

After two weeks the following changes:

10% Potassium compound   10x2 teaspoons in juice
Lugols solution, half strength   5x2 drops in juice
Thyroid (Armour)   5x0.5 grain (1 grain – 1/16 gram)
Niacin   6x50 mg. (unchanged)
Crude Liver Extract, Lilly No. 352
injections daily (1 cc. Equals 10 units)
  3 cc. Plus 1 cc. Vit. B-12 (30 microgr.) (unchanged)

Diet and medication serve the purpose of restoring potassium and the minerals of the K-group (see Rudolf Keller) to the tissues until they are completely saturated and, conversely, of reconveying sodium and its group out of the cells and into the circulatory fluids, the connective tissues and other tissues where they naturally belong. The retentive surplus of sodium must be eliminated. It is only on this basis that further recovery of the organs can take place. In another study I have indicated that cancer develops particularly in the various organs in which sodium is physiologically reabsorbed, that is to say, stored up, as for example, in the excretory ducts of the mammal gland, in the ductus Wirsungianus of the pancreas, etc. It also develops more frequently later in life when the potassium-content of the cells is gradually lost and sodium is added, thus increasing the susceptibility of the cells to cancer. On the other hand, tissues with higher potassium-content, such as the muscles, are more protected.

Oxidation can once more predominantly function in all organs and fermentation is held back. Oxidizing enzymes, vitamins and hormones are again restored to full function and come into proper circulation. Along with the metabolism, the healing mechanism is restored. This mechanism can be activated for the cure of cancer, only if the restorative and eliminative organs for toxins and waste, especially the liver and kidneys, still function adequately.


Human beings have brought upon themselves the disease of cancer by their ungoverned self-indulgence, their urge for luxurious living, and increasing evils of our civilization. These human weaknesses, constantly stimulated by deep-seated instincts can never be eradicated. Thus cancer will be continuous and ever increasing threat to humanity.

Only a few will submit for a sufficiently long time to moderation and restrictions, and the more natural nutritive regime of the diet therapy. Few people will turn to it as a prophylactic measure. When they are ill and have no other choice, they will submit to a more natural system of living.

This is the conclusion I have drawn from my long years of practice. Discouraging though it may be, it must not prevent doctors from continuing their efforts in the direction of research and therapy.

  1. Maisin, J.: Le Cancer du goudron est — il simplement un cancer d’irritation locale? Compt. Rend. Contres du Cancer, 26, Strasbourg, 1923.
  2. Fischer-Wasels, B. Munch med Wschr. 1928, 53, 106. Die physiologischen Grundlagen der allgemeinen Geschwulst-disposition. Virch. Arch. 275, 723, 1929.
  3. R. Reding; Munch. Med. Wschr. 1939/41.
  4. A. Slosse u R. Reding.: Bull. Acad d. sc. Belg. 7:405 (1927); Cancer Bruxelles 4, 442 (1927).
  5. F.L. Hoffman: Cancer and Diet. William and Wilkins, Baltimore 1937.
  6. W. Caspart: Nutrition et Cancer, Herman & Co, Paris, 1938.
  7. Cornelius Nepos: vitae, Atticus, Cap. XXI, XXII.
  8. A. Tannenbaum. Am. J. Cancer 38, 335 (1940), Cancer Research 2:460, 1942.
  9. White, F.R. and al.: Nat. Cancer Inst. 5:43, 1944.
  10. Rush, H.P. and al: Cancer Research 5:431, 1945.
  11. Larsen, C.D. and W.E. Heston: J.Natl. Cancer Inst. 6:31, 1945.
  12. E. Freund u. G. Kaminer: Biochemische Grundlagen der Carcinomdispositon Springer Wien 1927. Wien. Med. Wschr. 88:33:64 (1938).
  13. W. Caspari u. f. Ottensooser: Zschr. F. Krebsforschung 38:351, 1932. F. Ottensooser: Am. J. Cancer 22,910, 1934.
  14. D.L.E. de Raadt: Zschr. F. Krebsforsch. 30:449, 1929, 32:596, 1930.
  15. Ralph Bircher: hunsa, Das Volk, das keine Krankheit kennt (1952) Verlag Hans Huber, Bern und Stuttgart — und besonders wertvoll: Werner Kollath: Die Ordnung unserer Nahrung. Hippokrates-Verlag 1952.
  16. Jesse P. Greenstein: Biochemistry of Cancer, S. 373 (1947); Academic Press, Inc., New York.
  17. Ganzheitsbehandlung der Geschwulsterkrankungen: Prof. Dr. Wserner Zabel, Berchtesgaden, hippokrates-Verlag 1953.


Gerson Max, A Cancer Therapy, Results of Fifty Cases.

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"Toxicity and deficiency are the causes of so-called "incurable" degenerative diseases. When the body is cleared from toxic materials and the mind from negative thoughts - individuals tend to spring back into health."

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