Dr. Johanna Budwig’s Healing Diet & Protocol

Budwig protocol & life energies blockages

On the question why the cancer always/sometimes comes back when the Budwig diet is abandoned

by Healing Cancer Naturally © 2006

The body cannot be healed without the soul,
and the soul can’t be healed without the body.
Wisdom from Ancient Greece

Dr. Budwig writes in Der Tod des Tumors Bd. 2 [The Death of the Tumor Vol. 2], on pages 109/110 about a cancer patient (with metastasized ovarian cancer who had been declared incurable by her doctors) that the patient quickly felt better and fully recovered after starting on the Budwig diet (immediately cutting out all medications etc.). The woman went on to live in good health for many years looking after her home. One day, however, upon contracting a simple cold, her family doctor recommended that “she return to normal fare”. She followed that advice and was dead within a few weeks’ time. Dr. Budwig comments: “When a person previously diagnosed with cancer abandons the oil-protein diet, death occurs appallingly quickly. Both my own observations and those of other MDs have confirmed that such straying from the diet will lead to death in an appallingly rapid fashion.

Another witness to the anecdotally observed deleteriousness of breaking the Budwig diet is naturopath Dr. K. Bischoff, MD. His testimonial regarding his practical experiences with cancer patients using the oil-protein diet is quoted on pages 116/117 of the above-cited Der Tod des Tumors Bd. 2. At the time of his report (dated 16 February 1962), he had been successfully treating a number of patients diagnosed with a "malignant tumor" over a period of six years. He used the Budwig Diet as the basic therapy and supplemented it with various methods aimed at oxygenating the organism. He writes: "Like with any serious condition, the strict rules must be observed for three years before they can be relaxed. A return to the former cancer-causing lifestyle must be avoided since a second bout of cancer does not hold much promise regarding healing success even when a rigorous diet change is again implemented. My experiences refer to rectal cancer, stomach cancer, and breast cancer."

Dr. Budwig confirms this warning in a somewhat different and less sweeping and ominous phrasing in the final sentences[1] of her last book Cancer - The Problem and The Solution where she writes: “I will add here a few sentences by American doctor Jan Roehm who has studied and applied my therapy in great detail. He writes: ‘... You should follow this diet for about five years. By that time, your tumor should have completely disappeared. Persons who stop the diet too early (by eating meat and sweets) sometimes see their health rapidly deteriorate and cannot be saved after such a bodily torture.’”

While the above statements somewhat vary in content, one speaking of a life-long dietary commitment required to uphold the gains in health and avert serious consequences, the other only referring to a five-year period in which strict observance may be required to not endanger the life of the patient, the common thread is that people diagnosed with cancer who get better or well on the properly implemented Budwig diet can run apparently serious risks by interrupting the diet for any length of time.[2] This sounds scary.

It also appears to make little sense since the body's immune system & overall health should have been strengthened while on the Budwig diet and thus be enabled to better resist and be more resilient in the face of any negative influences.

This is also the point at which in my eyes the insufficiency of any purely or mostly diet (and sunlight)-based healing approach (as which the Budwig protocol is frequently perceived and applied) is in clear evidence.

Dr. Johanna Budwig’s amazing successes

Dr. Budwig has truly brilliant and miraculous-seeming cancer-healing successes to her credit (many of which are even not yet accessible to the English-speaking world since they appear in yet-untranslated books such as the above-quoted Der Tod des Tumors, Bd. 2, which is filled with the most amazing cancer recovery stories). The world is forever indebted to Dr. Budwig for her discoveries and the helping hand she thus extended to the suffering millions, if they will but listen to her message of hope instead of to their conventional oncologists’ message of (mostly) hopelessness. Her successes clearly also seem to make her approach an important step to take to underpin any other health recovery efforts one may take, an opinion shared by eminent cancer treatment researcher Lothar Hirneise as well as generally speaking by the author of the present article.

Additionally, according to Udo Erasmus, author of Fats That Heal, Fats That Kill, Dr. Budwig blamed the small percentage of failures on patients not following her protocol’s prescriptions properly. (And the “low” 90% success rate as per the 1967 Süddeutscher Rundfunk Stuttgart interview with Dr. Budwig was a figure she gave for “terminal” cancer patients who had been through failed standard treatments. In fact, she seems to have claimed an almost 98% overall success or cure rate.)

The body holistic

Dr. Budwig was also very much aware that human beings are a complex of body, mind and soul and that each of these parts plays an important role both in disease development and healing (see Interview with Dr. Johanna Budwig, particularly her reply to the question “...shouldn’t all those people who eat these heated oils get cancer?”). She didn’t however devote much space to these other areas of our being (the “factor X”), leaving it up to the individual to decide which further healing avenues to pursue while offering some recommendations (such as using homeopathy and psychotherapy, see In Dr. Budwig’s own words: complementary healing modalities).

Cancer’s underlying energetics

To now address the questions why it has been observed that

(1) the cancer always/sometimes will come back with a vengeance (for instance in the above-quoted case of ovarian cancer) as well as

(2) be unamenable to renewed dietary efforts and influences

after the diet had been interrupted.

I believe that this is exactly where the budding science of “energetics” comes in: We are highly complex beings whose bodies and minds are made of and function on energies which yet await proper scientific exploration. Thankfully some first major steps have been taken in previous decades to scientifically and irrefutably prove the existence of what the Chinese have known and applied in their Traditional Chinese Medicine for thousands of years (see Energetics):

We are composed of various energy bodies (including the one that appears to us as our physical body due to the way our senses are “constructed”). These bodies “run” on life force and a range of other spiritual-mental-emotional energies and are continually supplied with these life-supporting energies from yet unexplored sources. This life force flows in pathways called meridians (therapeutically used for instance in acupuncture and acupressure) and other energy-conducting channels.

Now, and this is the crunch point: this continuously needed supply of various life force energies and their free flow can be impeded and throttled (or disturbed/adulterated) by a number of factors:

Such energy flow blocking factors can range from unexpressed emotions (leading to shallow breathing etc.), suppressed/unhealed trauma (both from childhood or later) & lack of joy, various spiritual and mental influences, to factors as seemingly commonplace as scars and dental problems (root canals etc.) and even as “esoteric” (or rather unexplored) as geopathic stress (this non-exhaustive enumeration is solely meant as a general overview to paint a rough picture of the many possible influences which could exert an inhibiting effect on life force energy inflow and hence circulation).

And it is precisely this type of life energy influx and circulation impediment or disturbance which will (according to TCM and a number of authors) lead to disease (including cancer) in organs affected by such energetic undersupply, distortion or blockage.

That reinstatement of proper healthy life energy flow can indeed heal cancer (including so-called “terminal” cancer) has been amply proven by the Chinese (see The world’s largest medicineless hospital’s successes include tumours dissolving in minutes via chi), and by many anecdotal DIY cancer healing stories often classified as “spontaneous remissions” (and thus left unexplained and unresearched). For examples of the various energies that may lie behind and underneath these wonderful healings from cancer, see for instance

For a general overview, see for instance

How indeed could spontaneous remissions be possible and a (widely shoved-under-the-rug) fact if there weren’t unknown underlying energies at work in our bodies, health and lives?

And in fact, Dr. Budwig was very aware of this larger energetic-emotional-mental-spiritual picture of health and illness, as can be seen from statements like the following: “It is very important to view the person as a unit consisting of body, emotion, and mind/spirit. However, the factor that is primarily effective at any one moment can vary greatly among individuals. ... In a human being, all three factors belong together. [People] do not get sick the same way. The individual's life [vital] function always plays a very significant part.”

Why the cancer may come back when the Budwig diet is abandoned

So concluding from all of the foregoing, I feel the following tentative answer could be supplied to question (1) stated above, i.e. why the cancer will come back when the diet is abandoned.

The cancer comes back (sometimes or always) with a vengeance in former cancer patients who interrupt the Budwig diet since they have not addressed the energetic blockage(s) or factors underlying the canceration process. In other words, they have not healed the blocked emotions and unresolved (childhood etc.) trauma, the subconscious naysayer, the lack of joy in their life, the missing spiritual attunement(s), the geopathic/EMF stress or whatever else (or whatever combination of different factors) may energetically underlie the canceration, cutting off or adulterating the inflow and healthy circulation of life-giving and sustaining energies. In other words, they have not looked into healing their lives on all levels of their being. While the Budwig diet (which of course always includes “sunlight therapy”) has successfully allowed the former cancerous tumors to heal and has kept at bay any renewed cellular canceration process, it has naturally left unaddressed these underlying energetic blockages, distortions and/or negative or damaging influences. In other words, it has - and powerfully so - healed the body at the surface level, but diet and sunlight alone do not necessarily resolve all other issues in need of healing in a being as complex as humans are, in particular any emotional, mental and spiritual issues which, when left unaddressed/unresolved, can/will precipitate into the physical body as suboptimal functioning and eventual disease.

Incidentally, according to Dr Hamer’s German New Medicine, the following would have happened: The patient following the Budwig diet is experiencing what Dr Hamer calls a Hanging Conflict Phase, where the body helped by the diet is able to keep the cancer in check but the conflict is not resolved and the cancer is not cured.

When the patient stops the diet and some emotion or event triggers the cancer back into action, the cancer becomes very active and fast developing.

Other patients who are able to resolve their conflict naturally during the course of the dietary treatment, especially thanks to the physical and moral improvement they experience, are totally cured of their cancer and could therefore stop the diet without trouble.

To address question (2) above why the cancer may sometimes/frequently be unamenable to renewed dietary efforts and influences after the diet was interrupted once, as observed by Dr. K. Bischoff, MD, and as implied by Dr. Roehm:

Based on my reply to question (1), I could only speculate here on the reasons why the cancer cells become resistant or refractory to the beneficial influence of the water-soluble omega-3s and other dietary improvements. One speculation would be that the cutting-off of life-giving and sustaining energies over many years will gradually and continually weaken the affected area/organ in its basic structure or energy matrix[3], further and further eroding it (making it “less sound”). As soon as the somewhat compensatory energy deliveries via the omega-3-rich Budwig nutrition (in its interaction with sunlight) are discontinued, the organ has little healthy life energy to fall back on and due to its by then more pronounced structural weakness (or “erosion”) and the more disintegrated constitution of its energy matrix[3], falls prey to the cancerous cells without hope of repair via renewed high-omega-3 nutrition. But this so far is pure conjecture so I will reserve my (likely still tentative) reply to this question for a later date.

What is the solution?

The first option: disciplined adherence

Following from the above, two conclusions can be drawn: one either, to the end of one’s days, religiously and disciplinedly follows the diet and natural lifestyle as generally prescribed by Dr. Budwig (while remembering that she did adapt it slightly to the individual case and fully endorsed using complementary approaches), and health-wise one may fare wonderfully with this. This is certainly what Dr. Budwig appears to unequivocally recommend. Many may see no problem with such faithful adherence - after all, they may have experienced complete cancer remissions and/or other health recovery on the Budwig diet, love its often-commented-upon great taste[4] and feel its additional benefits and positive effects by their general sense of well-being and exuberant energy.

Since the Budwig diet seems like a healthy, natural and balanced form of nourishing oneself, and a lifestyle close to nature (avoiding contact with all materials, substances and devices which negatively impact normal biological functioning) appears to be most advisable for any health-conscious person in any case, this seems indeed like a good option for next to anyone to choose.

When fear enters the picture

That option seems less advantageous to me, however, if this kind of diet (or any diet, for that matter) is strictly followed for reasons of fear, fear being an emotion that has directly measurable negative impacts on health, not to mention well-being. In fact, fear is often described and experienced as a constricting energy, as evidenced by the clammy hands, pale skin, tense muscles, strangled feeling in one’s throat and other symptoms of constriction which directly run counter to the free-flowing happy energy states which accompany and promote healthy (well-)being.

The second option: removing energy blockages & reestablishing energetic flow on all levels

The second option in my view would be to start exploring oneself to see and address what parts of oneself require healing and re-establishing of full energetic flow. This is also holistic cancer researcher’s Lothar Hirneise’s stance: using the Budwig insights and suggestions as the dietary/lifestyle basis, one additionally works at removing all toxic influences one is able to and getting one’s life energies, joy in life and “spiritual attunement[5] moving and reestablished again. Such an approach might be rewarded by a greater sense of freedom and joy in life and a lifestyle less based in fear. It might also, and this would be the major benefit, permanently remove the deeper energetic bases (blockages/distortions) which formerly allowed any canceration process to occur in the first place. (Compare in this respect particularly Dr. Hamer’s German New Medicine approach and detailed explanation of cancer genesis or “canceration” as well as Edgar Cayce’s perspective of cancer causation.)

This second option wouldn't imply leaving the diet altogether but rather to continue following Johanna Budwig’s basic and general dietary and lifestyle advice, yet not out of fear but simply because it makes good health sense, particularly in a time where our health seems to be challenged on many fronts simultaneously (compare Cancer Causes) and for all those whose body already showed signs of ill health such as detectable cancer at some previous point. Such a healthy lifestyle includes both aware monitoring and avoidance of damaging factors such as bad fats (hydrogenated, transfats etc.), sugar, processed & nonorganic food, preservatives, deleterious electromagnetic influences (by using for instance only natural materials and avoiding exposure to EMF fields)[6] and many other things (see Detoxification, Cancer Causes, Geopathic Stress, Electromagnetic fields and radiation: critical protection and avoidance measures etc. ). And this means ingesting the health-giving natural foods as specified by Dr. Budwig and various naturopathic schools.

In conclusion

It is not up to me to recommend any one thing to anyone since I will only take responsibility for my own health and life (see Note on Healing). Personally, when it comes to matters of either health recovery or maintenance, I would follow (at least) a three-pronged approach:

  • Getting informed to the extent possible and trying to sort the wheat from the chaff (large parts of the currently available health-related information is based upon incomplete knowledge and/or commercial interests, i.e. is little more than fact mingled with [self-interested] opinion, in my assessment). In other words, using discernment based on what facts one is able to gather.
  • Following one’s feelings as well as any advice and guidance one may feel they are being given from the higher spiritual sources of goodness and love they place their trust in. To open oneself to receive such answers, one could for instance meditate, breathe deeply, listen to relaxing music. One could ask to receive guidance on the health issue present so one’s highest good is being served (this automatically includes the highest good of all beings). And ask what spiritual and growth lessons, if any, one is being gifted with, thanks to this challenge.
    I would always thank in advance for already having received that guidance and these answers. Trust and listen.[7] I very much believe that we are spiritual beings clothed in physical bodies, and that the basic reason for everything in life can be traced to a deeper, underlying, spiritual primal cause.
    An excellent starter I would recommend can be requesting the most benevolent outcome for anything one undertakes.
  • Look into EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique): a powerful approach for healing mind and body by re-establishing healthy energetic flow. EFT can be self-taught and applied based on the ample free material available. Although a relatively recent development, EFT is based on millennia of knowledge discovered by the Chinese: that of the body-mind’s underlying energy system and our ability to influence it via acupuncture and acupressure to further its health by reestablishing full energetic flow. For inspiration, read Stage 3 uterine cancer remission testimonial: healed via EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique), healthy diet and detoxification.
    Also highly recommended: Donna Eden's Energy Medicine as well as Dr. Bradley Nelson's Emotion Code (both of which also can be self-applied, mostly after a somewhat steeper learning curve).

Footnotes

1 just followed by recipes, scientific glossary and a bibliography of her works

2 The sketched scenarios or observations of patterns become even less easily understood when we consider cases such as that of Cliff Beckwith, a 14 year prostate cancer victor who introduced the Budwig diet to the English-speaking world (see beckwithfamily.com). His success apparently was based on the simple addition of the basic “Budwig mix” consisting of flaxoil and cottage cheese to an otherwise largely “normal” diet which even included meat and sugar. He does attribute his success partially to the prayers he received from many friends.

3 See Energetics for background material on the energetic bases of physical life.

4 Remember that taste is literally acquired (via conditioning through upbringing and cultural environment) and thus very much amenable to change.

5 which may often/invariably include service to others. Also compare in this respect Thoughts on Dr. Hamer's "German New Medicine" concepts regarding the emotional genesis of cancer: on the impact of environmental toxins, nutritional deficiencies, energetic and spiritual influences.

6 According to one school of thought, the ever-increasing exposure of humanity to man-made noxious EMFs is the number one cause of the rising cancer incidence. Dr. Budwig stresses that in addition to diet and Eldi oils, the electromagnetic field surrounding the person also has great importance, hence the interest in using only natural materials in one's environment, clothing etc. In this context, I would like to draw particular attention to On electromagnetic fields (EMFs): sources, suspected link to cancer or other health concerns, detection and protection measures, particularly all those who are seemingly unresponsive to the Budwig diet. This includes the possibly highly negative impact of cell-phone transmitter stations in one's vicinity (including cordless DECT stations in one's own home as well as mobile phones usage). including cordless DECT stations in one's own home as well as mobile phone usage). See the very important pages on Geopathic Stress, Electromagnetic fields and radiation: critical protection and avoidance measures, Smart meters: on serious health hazards and remedial action, Studies on electromagnetic fields and radiation & cancer risk and Mobile Phones, Electro Magnetic Radiation [EMR] & Children’s Brain Cancer.

7 For hands-on how-to guidance as to techniques that can be used, you may be interested in Mind Power, Mental Influences, Illness & Healing: CDs and DVDs, Energy Healing & Energy Medicine DVDs and others.

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