(June/July, 1999)

Yeast Therapy Argued
from Dave W., Brenda P., Ed D., et. al.

Ed's Preface: In May I published an exchange titled "Candidiasis Therapy Beat My Psoriasis, from Brenda P." In this exchange, Brenda P. talked about the good results she obtained by following a regimen designed to combat Chronic Candidiasis Syndrome. She referred us to another web publication:

http://members.aol.com/docdarren/med/candida.html

In response to this exchange, Dave W. sent this:

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[Dave W:] In regard to the Yeast Connection Handbook that Brenda P. refers to, I suggest a visit to this site:

www.quackwatch.com/01QuackeryRelatedTopics/candida.html

[In the "docdarren" web publication Brenda P. referenced, Dr. Darren] expresses the sentiment at least three times that he believes all doctors are simply in it for the money, and want to keep people sick in order to buy boats and mansions. If all of the 'yeast researchers' have this kind of attitude, I'm not at all surprised the syndrome is not being given much attention by mainstream scientists. Insulting people is hardly the way to get on their good side.

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[Ed:] Dave W.'s reference to "QuackeryRelatedTopics" was also interesting and I forwarded the link to Brenda P. for her reaction. Brenda responded:

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[Brenda P:] I read the dubious "Yeast Allergies" document, and found it interesting reading. I'm afraid I have very little faith in the medical profession and truly believe most physicians are narrow-minded. I have literally hundreds of dollars worth of prescriptions that have made my psoriasis much worse (I do not have a drug plan) and therefore have literally thrown away lots of money on the traditional treatments, to no avail. The yeast connection method has produced positive results for me with no side effects and no allergic reactions. I never figured this would cure everyone's psoriasis; however, if it helps one other person I feel its worth a try. Thanks for forwarding the feedback. -Brenda P.

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Ed's Response: Here I am facilitating a rhetorical argument. Contradictory experiences with implications, not guarantees. The enigmatic "gray area." The "human predicament." I believe Brenda P.'s dermatologist had the right idea: He didn't deny the evidence in front of him (that Brenda was markedly improved), nor did he extrapolate much from her situation. Rather, he thought it might be appropriate to encourage a few other flakers to try the yeast connection method.

In fact, I think this is a good way to screen prospective derms: Ask them, "If I wanted to try some off-the-wall homeopathic approach to treating my psoriasis—or a dietary supplement routine—how would you react?" My inclination would be to favor derms who want to permit experimentation but also want to be informed to avoid drug interactions or known unsafe practices (e.g., consuming too much zinc). If the first thing out of a derm's mouth is, "That won't work," neither will that derm—at least, not for ME. -Ed

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