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Carey Reams (1904-1987)Carey Reams

Carey Reams is known for his alternative biophysical notions and concomitant alternative health advice. He claimed to have six doctorates, including some sort of medical degree from someplace in England, but he claimed he was not a medical doctor. He also denied that he posed as one, yet in 1976 he was arrested and convicted of practicing medicine without a license in the state of Georgia. He considered most medical drugs, all radiation, and most surgery harmful to health, preferring instead treatments such as Norwegian fjord kelp for brain tumors and cataracts.

In 1931 during a period of prayer and fasting, Reams received a divine revelation of the biochemistry numbers for perfect human health: 1.5, 6.4, 6.4, 7, 1, 3, 3.

Reams taught that human, animal, and plant cells are built by an ionization process akin to electroplating. "Ionization," he proclaimed, "is God's [sic] laws putting things together and taking them apart ion by ion." He claimed that his reading of the Bible told him that Jesus gave him a mandate to help others improve their health. So, he eventually constructed an alternative view of nature to help him help others. For example, he claimed that there are two kinds of atoms and molecules: anions and cations. Anions, he said, are atoms or molecules with electrons that rotate clockwise when viewed from above. He was not bothered by the fact that electrons don't really "rotate" or that the idea of "above" or "below" when talking about "viewing" an atom is rather senseless. After all, he was good friends with Einstein, or so we're told. Not surprisingly, he defined a cation as atoms or molecules with electrons that rotate counter-clockwise when viewed from above. Anions and cations have different energy values, but they are not measured in any terms that would make sense to a physicist. An anion can have an energy value of 1-499 Milhouse Units, with an average value of 250 Milhouse Units. A cation can have an energy value of 500-999 Milhouse Units, with an average value of 750 Milhouse Units. You will search in vain through any physics text for a definition of a "Milhouse Unit."

Reams was a big promoter of detoxing the body with lemon juice. The lemon, he claimed, is the only anionic food. Who are we to disagree? Reams said he was allergic to lemon but that Canada Dry Collins Mixer is a passable substitute for lemon. (I'm not making this up.) Many of the questionable and false claims regarding the alkaline diet are at the root of Reams's notions about acidity and alkalinity. I advise the reader to review that entry, lest you think that this entry on Reams is nothing but an ad hominem attack on an oddball.

Reams believed that diet was the cause and cure of all illness. Now, back to those magical numbers he was given in a moment of divine inspiration. The numbers are the same for everybody, but the diet will differ depending on the individual. The numbers will guide you to the right balance of energy and matter, i.e., perfect health. Reams's divine inspiration told him that the key to understanding what the body needed could be found by measuring the pH of urine and saliva. The urine pH and saliva pH denote the resistance between the anions and cations, the anions and anions, and the cations and cations. This is a key factor in measuring the total amount of energy in our bodies.

Reams apparently grew up on a farm and was quite knowledgeable of agriculture. His inspiration apparently led him to see a direct analogy between the soil and bodily fluids. One admirer wrote:

Dr. Reams realized that the soil was everything, just like Pasteur said on his dead [sic] bed: "The soil is everything, the germ is nothing."[It is highly unlikely that Pasteur ever said such a thing. See my note below for the Pasteur story as told by germ-theory denialists.] He discovered that all the variables of the human soil can be determined from a person's urine plus saliva. His test consisted of 7 parameters (optimal values in between the brackets). Sugar brix (1.5); Urine pH (6.4); Saliva pH (6.4); Conductivity (7); Cell Debris (1); Nitrate Nitrogen (3); Ammonia Nitrogen (3)....

All energy in human bodies is created by the RESISTANCE generated when these oppositely charged ions rotating in opposite directions come together. Think of that, you physics majors! In college physics we have been taught, and generally quite true, that RESISTANCE consumes energy. But in the ionization chemistry of the human body, it is the RESISTANCE between the orbiting anions and the orbiting cations that actually creates energy! If there is no resistance, then no energy is created. In chemistry, the measure of this RESISTANCE is known as "pH." But pH is neither a qualitative or [sic] a quantitative measurement. It is just resistance.

So, now you've been instructed in alternative history, biology, physics, and chemistry. Please resist the urge to laugh at least until you've heard a few more Reamsisms.

Cancer, said Reams, is nothing more than dead cells that have stayed in the body too long, have lost their reserve energy, and have become disconnected from the nerve.

All disease is caused by a lack of minerals.

The human body can manufacture vitamin C.

Lemons are not acidic because acids are cations and lemon is an anion.

Not all of Reams's ideas rank high on the crankometer. For example, many of us who favor science-based medicine might find the following Reamism of some value: Hate is the finest cancer seed in the world.

See also alkaline diet, energy healing, detoxification therapies, faith healing, vibrational medicine, placebo effect, Jon Barron, Joel Wallach, , Hulda Clark, Phillip Day, Gerson therapy, Matthias Rath, Robert O. Young, and Cure Cancer the Natural Way?


note on Pasteur's alleged deathbed recantation of his life's work:

There are many places on the Internet that you will find the claim that on his deathbed Louis Pasteur (1822-1895) recanted his life's work on germ theory. There are two versions of this phony recantation story. You will find both abundantly represented on the Internet. One version says that Pasteur said Bernard avait raison. Le germe n'est rien, c'est le terrain qui est tout. The other version says that Pasteur said Béchamp avait raison. Le germe n'est rien, c'est le terrain qui est tout. Bernard refers to Claude Bernard (1813-1878) and Béchamp refers to Antoine Béchamp (1816-1908). The version that makes the most sense is the one that says that Béchamp was right. To say that Bernard was right seems odd since Bernard's theory of the milieu intérieur is not essentially in conflict with germ theory. Béchamp, on the other hand, believed that germs were created in the body as a response to, as one admirer puts it, "what you eat, breathe, drink, and bathe in.... " Pasteur held that germs exist independently of the body and can cause disease when a person is infected. The idea that the body creates germs is attractive to those who want to believe that nutrition and a healthy lifestyle (often described as using "natural" products, eating "organic" foods, and taking various vitamin and mineral supplements) are sufficient to ward off disease. The idea that germs can exist independently of the body, can invade and infect the body no matter how healthy one is or how much care one takes to live a healthy lifestyle, is supported by decades of scientific evidence. The idea that germs are created by the body in response to poor nutrition has no scientific evidence to support it.

It is important to remember that germ theory does not claim that all disease is caused by germs nor that all germs cause disease. It is also important to note that nutrition is an important part of good health. We know, for example, that some diseases are directly caused by lack of certain nutrients. For example, scurvy is due to a lack of vitamin C, not to "insanitary surroundings, overwork, mental depression and exposure to cold and damp" (Bryson 2010) as some germ-theory denialists would have it.

Pasteur's alleged deathbed recantation seems to have originated in 1939 with Leon Delhoume's De Claude Bernard a d'Arsonval. What one researcher was able to discover was that in April 1992 an article titled "To Be Or Not To Be? 150 Years of Hidden Knowledge" by Christopher Bird (1928–1996) was published in Nexxus Magazine. Bird claimed that he had met a woman named Marie Nonclercq who had written a doctoral dissertation in praise of Antoine Béchamp that was published in 1992 as Antoine Béchamp, 1816–1908, The Man and The Scientist, the Originality and Productivity of His Work. Bird claimed that Nonclercq told him that she had read of Pasteur's deathbed recantation in Delhoume's book. The story of the alleged recantation was repeated in 1956 in Hans Selye's book The Stress of Life. The story is now all over the Internet and put forth as if it were part of a discovery of a hidden truth that Pasteur's family and supporters have conspired to keep from public knowledge.

For more on this desecration of Pasteur's scientific work by the germ-theory denialists see Pasteur's Last Words by Peter Bowditch and this video:

further reading

reader comments

books and articles

"Why Bogus Therapies Often Seem to Work" by Barry L. Beyerstein, Ph.D.

Bausell, R. Barker. 2007. Snake Oil Science: The Truth about Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Oxford University Press.

McCoy, Bob. Quack! : Tales of Medical Fraud from the Museum of Questionable Medical Devices (Santa Monica Press, 2000).

Park, Bob. (2001). Voodoo Science: The Road from Foolishness to Fraud. Oxford University Press.


Infectious Diseases - The Mayo Clinic Learn all about germs: bacteria, viruses, fungi, protozoa, and helminths (worms)

Urine/Saliva pH Testing: Another Gimmick to Sell You Something by Stephen Barrett, M.D.

pro Reams websites

Reams Biological theory of Ionization

Biological Ionization as discovered by Dr. Carey Reams (1904-1987) Article Compiled by Darlene Sartore for An Ever Better World Internet Academy

Reams Biological theory of Ionization Chart

Dr. Carey Reams

Last updated 21-Nov-2015

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