Hydrogen peroxide is involved in all of life’s vital processes, and must be present for the immune system to function properly. The cells in the body that fight infection (known as granulocytes) produce hydrogen peroxide as a first line of defense against invading organisms like parasites, viruses, bacteria and yeast. It is also required for the metabolism of protein, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins and minerals. As a hormonal regulator, hydrogen peroxide is necessary for the body’s production of estrogen, progesterone and thyroxin; it also helps regulate blood sugar and the production of energy in cells.
When it comes to hydrogen peroxide therapy there seems to be only two points of view. Supporters consider it one of the greatest healing miracles of all time. Those opposed feel its ingestion is exceptionally dangerous, and only the foolhardy could think of engaging in such behavior, stating that taking hydrogen peroxide orally can have a corrosive effect on the stomach and small intestine and advise against using it. The controversy deals with ingesting H2O2 orally or introducing it into the body intravenously. The dispute has been going on for decades and it will continue for many more years to come. Oral use is dirt cheap to use, so of course the medical community will resist.
Hydrogen Peroxide (H2O2) – How it works
When exposed to other compounds hydrogen peroxide dismutates readily. The extra oxygen atom is released into tissues, leaving behind H20 (water). In nature oxygen (02) consists of two atoms–a very stable combination. A single atom of oxygen, however, is very reactive and is referred to as a free radical. Over the past several years, we’ve continually read that these free radicals are responsible for all types of ailments and even premature aging. What many writers seem to forget, however, is that our bodies create and use free radicals to destroy harmful bacteria, viruses, and fungi. In fact, the cells responsible for fighting infection and foreign invaders in the body (your white blood cells) make hydrogen peroxide and use it to oxidize any offending culprits. Hydrogen peroxide produced within individual body cells is essential for life.
And no one doubts its effectiveness when it comes to treating infections topically. The intense bubbling you see when hydrogen peroxide comes in contact with a bacteria-laden cut or wound is the oxygen being released and bacteria being destroyed. The ability of our cells to produce hydrogen peroxide is essential for life. H202 is not some undesirable by-product or toxin, but instead a basic requirement for good health.
Free radicals, also known simply as radicals, are organic molecules responsible for aging, tissue damage, and possibly some diseases. These molecules are very unstable, therefore they look to bond with other molecules, destroying their health and further continuing the damaging process. Antioxidants, present in many foods, are molecules that prevent free radicals from harming healthy tissue.
Radicals do play a key role in several biological processes. They play a part in the work of the white blood cells called phagocytes, which “eat” bacteria and other pathogens in the body. They also are believed to be involved in a process called redox signaling, where they are thought to act as cellular messengers.
The Problem with Radicals
Some molecules are unstable. They do not have an even number of electrons, so they are always searching for an extra electron they can “steal” to become stable. Out in the world, this is a normal process, but in the body, it can result in unnecessary and unwanted damage.
Free radicals are “free” because they float around until they stabilize, and “radical” in the sense that there are a wide variety of molecules from which they can take an electron. The damage doesn’t stop there, however, as the new molecule, say a piece of a cell wall, is now also missing an electron and has become another free radical. This snowball effect can wreak havoc on healthy tissue.
It was reported to work as far back as 1920. The English medical journal, Lancet, then reported that intravenous infusion was used successfully to treat pneumonia in the epidemic following World War I. In the 1940’s Father Richard Willhelm, the pioneer in promoting peroxide use, reported on the compound being used extensively to treat everything from bacterial-related mental illness to skin disease and polio. Father Willhelm is the founder of “Educational Concern for Hydrogen Peroxide” (ECHO, a nonprofit organization dedicated to educating the public on the safe use and therapeutic benefits of hydrogen peroxide.) Much of the interest in hydrogen peroxide waned in the 1940’s when prescription medications came on the scene. Since that time there has been little economic interest in funding peroxide research. After all, it is dirt cheap and non-patentable. Even still, in the last 25 years, over 7,700 articles relating to hydrogen peroxide have been written in the standard medical journals. Thousands more, involving its therapeutic use, have appeared in alternative health publications. The number of conditions helped by hydrogen peroxide is astounding. The reported dangers and side effects are few and often conflicting.
Aerobic versus Anaerobic
The use of hydrogen peroxide (oxygen) has been proven to treat illness of nearly every type. Unlike healthy human cells that love oxygen, the disease causing viruses, bacteria, fungi and parasites (including the HIV and cancer virus, cancer cells, arthritis microbes, colds and flu, and West Nile virus carried by mosquitoes) – like most primitive lower life forms – are almost all anaerobic (use sugar to survive instead of oxygen). That means these microbes and cancer cells cannot live in high oxygen concentrations. Yes, that’s right, cancer cells and HIV die when exposed to oxygen.
The use of hydrogen peroxide and ozone in medicine is based on the fact that the accumulation of toxins in the body is normally burnt up by the process of oxidation, a process wherein a substance is changed chemically because of the effect of oxygen on it. Oxidation breaks the toxins down into carbon dioxide and water, and eliminates them from the body. However, if the oxygen system of the body is weak or deficient (whether through lack of exercise, environmental pollution, poor diet, smoking, or even improper breathing), our bodies cannot eliminate them adequately and a toxic reaction can occur. In minor cases, a toxic buildup can lead to fatigue, headaches, etc., while a wide range of deadly diseases can result when poor oxygenation is chronic.
Most harmful bacteria (and cancer cells) are anaerobic and cannot survive in the presence of oxygen or H202.
H202 works wonders on a multitude of health problems.
It does so by increasing tissue oxygen levels.
It’s obvious that our oxygen needs are not being met. Several of the most common ailments now affecting our population are directly related to oxygen starvation. Asthma, emphysema, and lung disease are on the rise, especially in the polluted metropolitan areas. Cases of constipation, diarrhea, intestinal parasites and bowel cancer are all on the upswing. Periodontal disease is endemic in the adult population of this country. Cancer of all forms continues to increase. Immune system disorders are sweeping the globe. Chronic fatigue, “Yuppie Flu” and hundreds of other strange viral diseases have begun to surface. Ironically, many of the new “miracle” drugs and nutritional supplements used to treat these conditions work by increasing cellular oxygen (oftentimes through H202 formation). For example, the miracle nutrient, Coenzyme Q10, helps regulate intercellular oxidation. Organic germanium, which received considerable publicity not too long ago, also increases oxygen levels at the cellular level. And even substances like niacin and vitamin E promote tissue oxidation through their dilation of blood vessels.
Hydrogen peroxide is only one of the many components that help regulate the amount of oxygen getting to your cells. Its presence is vital for many other functions as well. It is required for the production of thyroid hormone and sexual hormones. (Mol Cell Endocrinol 86;46(2): 149-154) (Steroids 82;40(5):5690579). It stimulates the production of interferon (J Immunol 85;134(4):24492455). It dilates blood vessels in the heart and brain (Am J Physiol 86;250 (5 pt 2): H815-821 and (2 pt 2):H157-162). It improves glucose utilization in diabetics (Proceedings of the IBOM Conference 1989, 1990, 1991). The closer you look at hydrogen peroxide, the less surprising it becomes that it can help such a wide variety of conditions.Grades of Hydrogen Peroxide
A) 3.5% Pharmaceutical Grade: This is the grade sold at your local drugstore or supermarket. This product is not recommended for internal use. It contains an assortment of stabilizers which shouldn’t be ingested. Various stabilizers include: acetanilide, phenol, sodium stanate and tertrasodium phosphate.
B) 6% Beautician Grade: This is used in beauty shops to color hair and is not recommended for internal use.
C) 30% Reagent Grade: This is used for various scientific experimentation and also contains stabilizers. It is also not for internal use.
D) 30% to 32% Electronic Grade: This is used to clean electronic parts and not for internal use.
E) 35% Technical Grade: This is a more concentrated product than the Reagent Grade and differs slightly in that phosphorus is added to help neutralize any chlorine from the water used to dilute it.
F) 35% Food Grade: This is used in the production of foods like cheese, eggs, and whey-containing products. It is also sprayed on the foil lining of aseptic packages containing fruit juices and milk products. FOOD GRADE IS THE ONLY GRADE RECOMMENDED FOR INTERNAL USE.
G) 90%: This is used as an oxygen source for rocket fuel.
Only 35% Food Grade hydrogen peroxide is recommended for internal use. At this concentration, however, hydrogen peroxide is a very strong oxidizer and if not diluted, it can be extremely dangerous or even fatal. Any concentrations over 10% can cause neurological reactions and damage to the upper gastrointestinal tract. There have been two known fatalities in children who ingested 27% and 40% concentrations of H202. Another reports tells of a 26 month old female who swallowed one mouthful of 35% H202. She immediately began vomiting, followed by fainting and respiratory arrest. Fortunately, she was under emergency room care and although she experienced erosion and bleeding of the stomach and esophagus, she survived the incident. When she was re-examined 12 days later, the areas involved had healed (J Toxicol Clin Toxicol 90;28(1):95-100).
35% Food Grade H202 must be….
1) handled carefully (direct contact will burn the skin- immediate flushing with water is recommended).
2) diluted properly before use.
3) stored safely and properly (after making a dilution the remainder should be stored tightly sealed in the fridge).
One of the most convenient methods of dispensing 35% H202 is from a small glass eye dropper bottle. These can be purchased at your local drugstore. Fill this with the 35% H202 and store the larger container in the refrigerator until more is needed. Store the eye dropper bottle in the refrigerator. The generally recommended dosage is outlined in the chart below.
Hydrogen Peroxide Therapy has been shown effective for many ailments, including the following:
|Cerebral Vascular Disease|
|Type 11 Rheumatoid Arthritis|
|Diabetic Gangrene Shingles|
The drops are mixed with either 6 to 8 ounces of distilled water, juice, aloe vera juice or gel.
(Don’t use chlorinated tap water to dilute the peroxide!)
The program outlined is only a suggestion.
|Day # – # Drops – Times Per Day|
|1 – 3 – 3|
|2 – 4 – 3|
|3 – 5 – 3|
|4 – 6 – 3|
|5 – 7 – 3|
|6 – 8 – 3|
|7 – 9 – 3|
|8 – 10 – 3|
|9 – 12 – 3|
|10 – 14 – 3|
|11 – 16 – 3|
|11 – 16 – 3|
|12 – 18 – 3|
|13 – 20 – 3|
|14 – 22 – 3|
|15 – 24 – 3|
|16 – 25 – 3|
|17 – 25 – 3|
|18 – 25 – 3|
|19 – 25 – 3|
|20 – 25 – 3|
|21 – 25 – 3|
|Now Start Maintenance Dosage|
It is based on reports from thousands of users. Those who choose to go at a slower pace can expect to progress more slowly, but that certainly is an option. The program is not carved in stone and keep in mind that it can be adapted to fit individual needs. Should you have severe reactions or discomfort, do not advance to the next level until you can handle the “herx reaction”. If needed, reduce your drops until you are comfortable.
Individuals who have had transplants should not undertake an H202 program. H202 stimulates the immune system and could possibly cause a rejection of the organ.
In most situations after the 21 day program, the amount of H202 can be tapered off gradually as follows:
25 drops once every other day for 1 week
25 drops once every third day for 2 weeks
25 drops once every fourth day for 3 weeks
This can then be reduced to between 5 and 15 drops per week based on how one feels. Those with more serious problems will often benefit from staying on 25 drops three times a day for one to three weeks, then tapering down to 25 drops two times daily until the problem is resolved (possibly as long as six months).
It is important that H202 be taken on an empty stomach. This is best accomplished by taking it either one hour before meals or three hours after meals. If there is food in the stomach, the reaction of H202 on any bacteria present may cause excess foaming, indigestion, and vomiting. The bleach-like aftertaste of H202 can be lessened by chewing one of the sugar-free cinnamon gums. Some individuals taking H202 immediately before bedtime have a difficult time getting to sleep. This is probably due to a sense of alertness triggered by an increase of oxygen at the cellular level. The oral dosage schedule is basically the same for all conditions. There are several points to keep in mind, however.
It is widely recognized that the herxheimer reaction is caused by the release of toxic chemicals (endotoxin) released from the cell walls of dying bacteria and virus due to effective treatment. This, in turn, results in a response from the immune system which manifests the “nausea” symptoms experienced by the individual being treated.
Some individuals may experience upset stomach. If this occurs it is recommended that one not stop the program, but rather remain at the current dosage level or reduce it to the previous level until the problem stops. (Some people have been able to solve the nausea problem by taking three or four lecithin capsules at the same time they take the H202.) During the program it’s not uncommon to experience what is known as a healing crisis. This commonly referred to as the herxheimer reaction. As dead bacteria and toxins are released from your body it may temporarily exceed your capacity to eliminate them quickly enough. In some individuals this overload may cause fatigue, diarrhea, headaches, skin eruptions, cold or flu-like symptoms, and/or nausea. One should not discontinue using the peroxide to stop this cleansing. By continuing the program, toxins will clear the body sooner and this healing crisis will pass rather quickly.
Vitamin E and an acidophilus can make more efficient use of any oxygen available and acidophilus will help re-establish the beneficial bacterial flora in the lower bowel and also help in the internal production of hydrogen peroxide.
Making and Using 3.5% Solutions of H202
A 3.5% solution can be made quite easily by first pouring 1 ounce of 35% H202 into a pint jar. To this add 11 ounces of distilled water. This will make 12 ounces of 3.5% H202. 3.5% H202 has a variety of medicinal uses.
1. Three tablespoons mixed with a quart of non-chlorinated water makes a good enema or douche formula.
2. It can be used full strength as a mouthwash or mixed with baking soda for toothpaste.
3. It can be used full strength as a foot bath for athlete’s foot. (Diabetics have found relief from circulation problems by soaking their feet in 1 pint of 3% peroxide mixed with 1 gallon of warm, non-chlorinated water for 30 minutes nightly.)
4. A tablespoon added to 1 cup of non-chlorinated water can be used as a nasal spray. Depending on the degree of sinus involvement, one will have to adjust the amount of peroxide used.
5. 3.5% H202 can be added to pets drinking water at the rate of 1 ounce per quart of non-chlorinated water. Sick cattle reportedly benefit from 1 pint (of 3%) to each 5 gallons of water.
Personal note: As with ANY food, drug, or supplement, using the product according to instructions is key to safety. If someone uses too much, then of course ramifications may be felt. We’ve NEVER heard of ANY harmful side effects from the correct usage of Food Grade hydrogen peroxide.
In dire cases of disease, intraveneous use may be recommended. If you would like to find a doctor in your area trained in the use of intravenous H202 infusion, contact the International Bio-Oxidative Medicine Foundation (IBOM), P.O. Box 13205, Oklahoma City, OK 73113 at (817) 481-9772. They can provide names and addresses of doctors using the procedure in your area.