Dr Johanna Budwig on what to avoid when following her diet and protocol

Items and influences observed to interfere with its healing effects

Copyright © 2006 Healing Cancer Naturally

Introductory excerpts from Dr. Budwig's books

The following extracts on what to avoid in conjunction with the Budwig therapy have been translated by Healing Cancer Naturally from Dr. Budwig's Der Tod des Tumors, Bd. 2 [The Death of the Tumor, Vol. 2], p. 121, Das Fettsyndrom [The Fat Syndrome], p. 141, Krebs - Das Problem und die Lösung” [Cancer — The Problem and the Solution], pp. 33 and 111, and Inaugural Disputation, p. 12.

"What needs to be mentioned are the items to be eliminated in the Budwig approach which include

  • the wrong fats
  • cytostatic, i.e. growth-inhibiting chemical (chemotherapy) and physical (radiation) treatments
  • and ... cortisones, hormones and many painkillers.”

“When I counsel patients, the things to be excluded are just as important.”

“We avoid rays and substances having a dissociative effect on the association of fat and protein. Narcotics ... are considered disruptive regarding the buildup of energy and the function of the lipoid membrane.”

"In addition to the lack of vital (esssential) bio-logical fats and the ingestion of extremely dangerous fats, the following items are unbio-logical and to be rejected: all insecticides, many medications, the polluted air brought on by industrial activities which could be gotten under better control, and most preservatives used in our food today.

In fact, one could draw up an entire list of additional factors which negatively affect the organism, with their detrimental effects being more pronounced when there is a lack of 'essential fats'."

One of these factors is surely stress, as also observed by Dr. Budwig.

Budwig diet and protocol: what to avoid

Dietary items

For major details specified by Dr. Budwig, see Dr. Johanna Budwig: The practical implementation of my oil-protein diet.


Dr. Budwig writes in Cancer — The Problem and the Solution: “It's very important to view the person as a whole consisting of body, psyche and soul. However, what has the greatest impact at any one time can vary greatly. To this day I feel positive that a woman in a dysfunctional marriage who has to deal with oppression and taunts from her husband day in and day out, cannot be helped with quark-flax oil. In a human being, the three aspects are inseparable.”[1]

Cytostatic treatments (chemotherapy and radiation)

Dr. Budwig was very clear in her statements regarding chemotherapy and radiation (also see Lothar Hirneise’s interview with Dr. Johanna Budwig). Both are cytostatic (entropy-promoting) treatments which directly oppose the cytodynamic (oxygenating, anti-entropy) effect of her diet in combination with sunlight. This somewhat relates to the fact that a strong correlation has been observed between exposure to ionizing radiation and cancer incidence.

Drugs and medications

Recent observations such as those submitted by a dedicated cancer carer[2] seem to bear out Dr. Budwig’s above-quoted caveat re the interfering action of “many medications”. The author writes among other things that "Three of the four of these [cancer patients unresponsive to the Budwig protocol] are still on chemotherapy while the fourth one is taking all kinds of medications for his heart condition. I have come to the realization that this is probably the reason WHY the Budwig protocol is not working for them as it should. I think that the medication chemicals can interfere with the Budwig protocol."

To avoid adopting any extreme position such as stating that “no” drugs and other medications at all must ever be allowed in conjunction with the Budwig therapy, here is a quote by one of the few people world-wide who like myself are in possession of all of Dr. Budwig’s available German books:

“Our stance must be flexible on that point because we cannot say this for certain for all cases and for all medications. [A fact which indeed becomes very clear when reading Dr. Budwig's (yet untranslated) German books.] While most meds are best eliminated, some may have to be maintained while others should be only gradually phased out, e.g. insulin.” (Compare Is there any effect on diabetes with the Budwig Protocol? and What if a person needs various “vital” medications?.)


As seen from the above, Dr. Budwig also warned against “many painkillers” as interfering with her diet’s healing effects. Dr. Budwig writes in her “Inaugural Disputation” on the subject of her approach’s effect on pain:

“As a matter of fact, the practical application of the oils both on the inside (flax oil/quark) and on the outside (Eldi oils) allows to largely eliminate all narcotic substances.”

And she comments in her book "Das Fettsyndrom" (p. 150) on the use of wine in overcoming pain and sleeplessness: "Often a glass of wine is more valuable and bio-logically more beneficial than the pill."

For numerous pain medication alternatives compatible with the Budwig protocol, see the extensive listing featured under Natural Cancer Pain Management & Relief: Medication Alternatives Which Don’t Interfere With the Budwig Diet.

Synthetic antioxidants and concentrated natural antioxidants

Dr. Budwig also issued express warnings regarding synthetic and concentrated natural antioxidants used in conjunction with her diet. See Can supplemental antioxidants interfere with the Budwig protocol? and I don't understand why it's okay to eat antioxidants in natural food but not okay to supplement with them.

Electromagnetic fields (EMFs) & electrosmog

Additionally, Dr. Budwig repeatedly pointed to the importance of the electromagnetic field (or in a worst-case scenario, electrosmog) surrounding the person, hence the interest of using only natural materials in one's immediate environment (clothing, bedding, furniture etc.) such as wood, linen, wool, horse hair, latex and similar materials.

The information featured in On electromagnetic fields (EMFs) (sources, suspected link to cancer or other health concerns, detection and protection measures) might thus be of particular interest to anyone seemingly unresponsive to the Budwig diet.

EMF dangers include 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 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 protective measures for your health, Studies on electromagnetic fields and radiation & cancer risk and Mobile Phones, Electro Magnetic Radiation [EMR] & Children’s Brain Cancer.

Ozone and similar high-oxygen treatments

Excerpted and translated by Healing Cancer Naturally © 2006 from Dr. Budwig’s books Das Fettsyndrom and Der Tod des Tumors

From Das Fettsyndrom pp. 76 ff.: “By using concentrated oxygen, aerosols, hydrogen peroxide injections and other methods attempting to counter tissue hypoxia or anoxia, numerous attempts are being made to force the blood to take up more oxygen. But trying to accomplish this via an unbiological route is the wrong way to go.

Such approaches (frequently based in financial interests) must lead to setbacks and do more harm than good. Such approaches are wrong, particularly with cancer patients!

The important issue to address is the question why the blood doesn’t take up sufficient oxygen in the first place. In animal experimentation[3], von Helmholtz, an outstanding physicist and physician, studied the question in-depth whether anoxia caused by the blood’s reduced oxygen acceptance could be remedied by increasing the available oxygen. He found that with anoxia, forced oxygen administration in fact accelerated the animal’s death...

What agent is able to rectify the dysfunction apparent in the living organism and bloodstream's oxygen absorption? ... As everybody knows, flax oil readily accepts oxygen from the air, and its essential fatty acids act as oxygen acceptors in the biological terrain, in the blood and mucosa. They surround the red blood corpuscles which fulfil the decisive function of oxygen carrier. ...

Absent these vital highly unsaturated fatty acids, respiration and fat combustion in animal organisms will be throttled. The anoxia accompanying cancer requires these highly unsaturated fatty acids to be clearly recognized as the oxygen carriers and mediators that they are. When due to civilized diets, hydrogenation of fats etc. these fatty acids are missing from the blood, the entire bloodstream’s affinity for oxygen will forcibly be paralyzed, which in turn results in systemic anoxia affecting all cells, tissues and loci of blood formation.”

From Der Tod des Tumors:

“It isn’t increased oxygen input that will remedy hypoxia and anoxia for good. It’s the oxygen acceptor which is decisive in the utilisation of oxygen.”

(And Werner Henning MD writes in his foreword to the book:) “It isn’t additional oxygen (ozone therapy as so frequently practiced today) that allows anoxia to be remedied but rather the advantageous combination of fat and protein as per the insights shared herein.”

I also have an anecdotal report on two persons on the Budwig diet who additionally underwent a certain type of ozone treatment combined with antioxidants and who both died of cancer.[4]

Hormonal treatments

Dr. Budwig didn't mention progesterone or testosterone per se (in the fourteen books of hers I have in my possession), but she repeatedly addressed the subject of hormones and insuline. Generally speaking, she was not in favor of (i.e. against) taking hormones, see e.g. the following quote from Das Fettsyndrom, p. 149:

"Numerous naturopathic modalities lend themselves to be combined with my approach. When substituting glandular extracts, hormones and other ‘bio-logical’ substances, it must be remembered that such substitutions can functionally paralyze the corresponding organs in their autonomous production of these substances.

Great caution is called for when applying such therapeutic modalities, with dosage being of the utmost importance...".

She uses stronger terms on the subsequent page where she writes: “Applying hormones or radiation therapy while following my oil-protein diet is a contradiction in terms (meaning that the former aims to produce a cytostatic or anti-mitosis effect while the latter aims to produce the opposite, i.e., a cytodynamic effect).

Her strongest words against using a “hormone cure” can be read in Der Tod des Tumors on page 144:

"My rejection of all anti-mitosis poisons has been well confirmed by a report recently issued by the laboratories of the CIBA company. They proved in their experiments that numerous female and male hormones hinder both the spontaneous and the catalytically accelerated autoxidation of linoleic acid.

First-hand experience has shown that applying hormone injections in conjunction with my nutritional therapy clearly has a very negative effect. In cases where the oil-protein diet had already been implemented for a while, an intense course of hormone treatment leads to worsening (deterioration) and a quick demise, and does so astonishingly fast.

In other words, it makes no sense to combine the application of mitotic toxins with the oil-protein diet which stimulates the renewal and shedding of cells as well as the entire secretion."

More on Dr. Budwig's stance on hormones under the Budwig FAQ: Can I take artificial hormones (such as Lupron) designed to suppress estradiol and testosterone production? .

In “energy medicine” circles, it is known that the seven major chakras (energy portals[5]) directly feed and thus affect the major hormonal glands of the human body. For a natural and possibly much healthier alternative to the currently observed “progesterone cream craze” pushed in alternative health circles, it may thus be an excellent idea to use “energetic” and emotional approaches such as Qigong, EFT etc. to energetically nourish, normalize and balance hormonal glands (increase or decrease their hormonal output), see for example Using EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) in the Treatment & Healing of Diabetes Type II: Reducing Blood Sugar, Blood Pressure & Leg Pain.

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General toxic environmental factors

I consider environmental awareness to be paramount to healthy and "considerate" living. While Dr. Budwig didn't put environmental pollution into the spotlight, she did refer to toxic agents a number of times in the various (yet untranslated) books she wrote. Her stance on this could be summarized, as stated above, in her own words: "...one could draw up an entire list of additional factors which negatively affect the organism, with their detrimental effects being more pronounced when there is a lack of 'essential fats'."

There is much (human) epidemiological evidence showing that numerous chemicals are/can be (highly) toxic and/or cancerogenic to humans, particularly in combination, pointing to a link between pesticides and cancer incidence, fluoride and cancer, aspartame and cancer, chlorinated tap water and cancer and many others.

So it is just common sense but also advocated and/or implied by Dr. Budwig to additionally avoid environmental toxins to the extent possible. In an increasingly toxic world, this includes things ranging from conventional cosmetics to paints and from water polluted with fluorides & artificial hormones to air saturated with various contaminants. Also see Suggested Cancer Causes and Detoxification for many details and proposed remedies.

With all that, however, one should never underrate the power of the human mind[7] and spirit.

Lack of 'essential fats' exacerbating the deleterious effect of environmental and other toxins

Dr. Budwig’s above statement - that lack of 'essential fats' particularly in tandem with the ingestion of harmful fats will exacerbate the deleterious effect of environmental and other toxins[6] - can be found in several places in Dr. Budwig’s original works.

What if a person needs various “vital” medications, painkillers etc.?

It is known that Dr. Budwig somewhat adjusted her approach to a patient's particular case. What I personally would suggest in scenarios as the above is considering a gradual phase-out while making every effort to find alternatives to so-called "indispensable" meds, with the final goal consisting in becoming independent of such aids.

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On finding Budwig-compatible or recommended natural alternatives to "indispensable" drugs

Budwig-friendly 'alternatives' to so-called "indispensable" medications include treatment modalities which are either natural or in other ways 'biological' and which support (or at least don't hinder) the body's self-healing at a causal and cellular level (instead of merely addressing/suppressing symptoms while flooding the body with foreign toxins as drugs tend to do.

Such bio-logical modalities in the larger sense include phytotherapy (herbs), hydrotherapy, homeopathy, colour therapy, psychological, mental (guided imagery, visualization, affirmations etc.), energetic (Qigong et al.) as well as numerous other approaches that enhance vital processes. They can be as "simple" as the immune-enhancing humour therapy (laughter), prayer, meditation, massage, foot reflexology etc.

For more details and suggestions, see Budwig FAQ: Weaning off medications and On Complementary Therapies & Treatment Modalities. Regarding Budwig-compatible pain medication alternatives, see the extensive listing found at Natural Cancer Pain Management & Relief: Medication Alternatives. I particularly recommend looking into EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique), see Introduction to EFT: Healing Mind and Body By Reestablishing Healthy Energetic Flow, which seems to be helping a growing number of people to become independent of drugs they previously considered necessary.

If you feel better under a doctor's supervision, I would choose a health care professional who employs natural and holistic approaches, for instance an anthroposophically trained physician (using homeopathy among other things), a naturopath or a similarly oriented therapist.

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1 For much background on emotions, stress and cancer genesis and healing, see Emotions and cancer, Dr. Ryke Geerd Hamer's "German New Medicine", Real-life healing stories, and Energetics. For suggestions how to successfully reduce stress, feelings of overwhelm and trauma etc., see eg Introduction to EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique): Healing Mind and Body By Reestablishing Healthy Energetic Flow and Spirituality.

2 See Private initiative reports remissions of cancer, Aids and other ailments thanks to Budwig diet & protocol.

3 Healing Cancer Naturally strongly opposes animal experimentation on both ethical and scientific grounds. See Cancer Research & Animal Experimentation: an Unholy Union?.

4 Also compare Treating cancer & other diseases with ozone.

5 See Energetics.

6 Compare Causes of Cancer for a listing of a number of reportedly carcinogenic items.

7 Something to remember with any treatment one may choose is the power of belief or placebo effect, i.e. the power of our mind, thoughts and expectations to influence the outcome of anything we do. Hence my recommendation, in addition to learning EFT, to also familiarize yourself with various mental healing techniques such as guided imagery, visualization and others. Their effect might be powerfully enhanced by combining them with EFT.

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