ALTERNATIVE medicines often seem to inspire a quasi-religious fervour in their adherents, but I recently came across an organisation that takes things to a whole new level.
The Genesis II Church seeks to “bring health to the world” through sacraments that treat Alzheimer’s, obesity, depression, kidney disease … oh, basically just everything.
The church has representatives around the globe, including three in Australia, one of whom has bishop status (a title apparently conferred in return for a high volume of sales).
Church sacraments – principally its Master or Miracle Mineral Solution (MMS) –can be bought online, with discounts for bulk sacramental purchases.
Oops, sorry, I shouldn’t have implied there was anything commercial about all this. The sacraments are bestowed in return for a fixed-price donation ranging from US$150 to US$900.
What exactly is this miracle cure discovered by church founder, Archbishop Jim Humble, while prospecting for gold in South America?
Well, according to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), MMS is better suited to cleaning toilets than curing human disease.
According to marketers, MMS is 28% sodium chlorite in distilled water. Users are instructed to mix it with citric acid (lemon or lime juice) before drinking, thereby turning it into chlorine dioxide.
Bleach, in other words.
“[MMS] has not been approved by the FDA for any use, but these products continue to be promoted on social media as a remedy for treating autism, cancer, HIV/AIDS, hepatitis and flu, among other conditions,” the agency warned earlier this month.
MMS enemas have reportedly been promoted on Facebook groups as a cure for autism.
FDA warnings about MMS go back to 2010. Australia’s Therapeutic Goods Administration also issued a warning in 2014 after a number of reported hospitalisations here.
The renewed FDA alert comes after a spate of recent reports of MMS side effects, including severe vomiting, severe diarrhoea, life-threatening low blood pressure caused by dehydration, and acute liver failure.
Regulators can warn all they like, but none of it is likely to stop Archbishop Humble or his ardent followers. This is about belief, not evidence.
MMS has helped hundreds of thousands of people, the archbishop writes on his website, with a wide range of illnesses, including “cancer, diabetes, hepatitis A, B, C, Lyme disease, [methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus], multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, HIV-AIDS, malaria, autism, infections of all kinds, arthritis, high cholesterol, acid reflux, kidney or liver diseases, aches and pains, allergies, urinary tract infections, digestive problems, high blood pressure, obesity, parasites, tumors and cysts, depression, sinus problems, eye disease, ear infections, dengue fever, skin problems, dental issues, problems with prostate (high [prostate-specific antigen]), erectile dysfunction and the list goes on”.
Of course it does.
“I know it sounds too good to be true,” the archbishop continues, “but according to feedback I have received over the last 20 years, I think it’s safe to say MMS has the potential to overcome most diseases known to mankind.”
I don’t think the word “safe” belongs anywhere in that sentence.
Archbishop Humble may not live up to his name, but his hubris is no doubt justified by the mission to heal all disease while saving humanity from the evil forces of vaccination and other mainstream medical interventions.
Jane McCredie is a Sydney-based health and science writer.
The statements or opinions expressed in this article reflect the views of the authors and do not represent the official policy of the AMA, the MJA or InSight+ unless so stated.