In 1995, a taste of peanut butter sent Heather Fraser's one-year-old son into anaphylactic shock. He was part of the "first wave" of kids in what has become an epidemic—today 1 in every 13 kids has a life-threatening food allergy. With a background in historical research, Heather set out to investigate what's behind this alarming trend, reading everything she could find: medical literature, textbooks, the history of anaphylaxis and allergy. She eventually found her answer – that "the history of vaccination had been bowdlerized," and in 2008 wrote a groundbreaking book, "The Peanut Allergy Epidemic."
Now in its second release, as a new batch of kindergarteners head off to school with Epi Pens in hand, Heather's book is a must-read for all parents. Read on for her insights into what she thinks is really behind the allergy epidemic and what we, as parents, can do about it.
What's with all the food allergies in kids these days?
The answer is simple and the science is
straight-forward, but it's also highly controversial: vaccination is
responsible for the epidemic levels of life threatening allergies to peanut and
other foods in children. 100-plus years of medical literature, every vaccine
package insert and a Nobel Prize given in 1913 all explain how vaccination
causes life threatening anaphylaxis and allergy/atopy to what is in the shot. But
vaccination also sensitizes kids to what's in the air and the body at the time
of, and after, each injection. Our bodies respond with allergy when our immune systems become overwhelmed by toxins that can be linked to foods or other substances. Since
the late-1980s, our increasingly aggressive vaccine schedules, combinations of
vaccines and ingredients in those vaccines have created an epidemic of allergic
Can you explain specifically what changed around that time to
create this problem?
became even more potent, administered in larger combinations (5 or even 7 in a single needle) and powerful immune stimulating additives
such as aluminum and conjugate toxoids are included in their formulas as a way
to stimulate an immune response. At the same time, health officials in the US,
Canada, the UK, Australia and other Westernized counties began to target
children at younger ages. Coverage rates quickly rose from about 65%
with the old schedules to 95% by 2000 with the new schedule. The pairing of
potent vaccines with high coverage rates launched the allergy epidemic in these
So more babies getting more vaccines has resulted in more kids
with severe allergies?
Such powerful vaccines more
readily create allergy in infants—whose immune systems are immature—to
what is in the shot as well as what is in the air and the body at the time of
(or after) vaccination. And once the child is made atopic, he or she becomes vulnerable
to ever more allergies. The link between food allergies and ear infections is
well documented. Ear infections and recurring ear infections in children has
led to the widespread and unchecked use of antibiotics, which further disrupts
the gut and immune system, leading to more allergy.
Why wasn't this
connection between vaccines and allergies noticed (and resolved) right away?
We were unaware that there was a
significant allergy problem among children until they showed up for
kindergarten in the early 1990s. But the timing of the epidemic is
unmistakable. It's confirmed by ER records, cohort studies and, significantly,
the eye-witness accounts of teachers confronted by a surge of severely allergic
children at that time.
Early in the epidemic, doctors seemed more
willing to address and answer the question of how and why this was happening.
They pointed to vaccination (in the medical literature and in video) and
wondered whether the policy of mass vaccination from birth was worth it. Today, however, doctors deliberately avoid
discussion of causes and instead focus on treatment, where there is much money
to be made.
Knowledge is a mom's best defense. There are no safe vaccines. They are defined in law as inherently and unavoidably risky.
But again, no doctor or allergist can deny
that vaccination causes allergy and anaphylaxis. It's in the vaccine package inserts.
But, in my opinion, a full understanding of the development of long-term allergic conditions is
not something doctors are usually willing to take responsibility for or discuss
at length at all—their focus is on getting as many kids vaccinated as
possible. If a doctor were to speak out, he or she would be vilified by peers and the mainstream press. Such a doctor would be unable to find work. There is a
climate of fear that keeps doctors silent today. Doctors cannot solve the "mystery" of the allergy epidemic because they are part of the problem.
So why don't all kids who get vaccinated have food allergies? Is
this just kind of an issue of Russian Roulette or do things like genetic predisposition
come into play? Maybe pediatricians need to be screening babies' families
closely for history of atopic disease?
Well, allergy is not a "disease." This is a
huge clue to understanding what has occurred with our children. It's a defense
we are all programmed to create when overwhelmed by toxicity. Tendency to
allergy may be inversely related to one's ability to detoxify. Margie Profit
indicated in her 1991 essay "The Function of Allergy" that allergy is
a final and sometimes risky natural defense against toxins linked to benign
substances. The scratching, vomiting, diarrhea, coughing and sneezing are attempts
to eject a toxin as quickly as possible from the body. The drop in blood
pressure is intended to prevent the toxin from
reaching vital organs. Allergy is established when the general defenses of the
body have been insufficient in preventing a specific toxin from accessing the
Sources like the vaccine package inserts or government websites including the CDC indicate that
anaphylaxis to any vaccine or vaccine component means you should not be
vaccinated with it again. Allergies to certain antibiotics are a significant concern
as is allergy to latex depending on the vaccine. Epilepsy or nervous system problems are also
a serious concern according to package inserts. Inconsolable screaming and seizures following the DTP shot in particular
means this shot may be wholly inappropriate for your child, which is another red flag.
Parents need to be vigilant and vocal.
What can parents do to prevent food allergies in their kids?
Knowledge is a mom's best defense. There are no safe
vaccines. They are defined in law as inherently and unavoidably risky. Further,
vaccination is not about the health of my child. If it were, there would be
screening for my child's kidney and liver health. Does my child have
mitochondrial issues? Vaccination is a one-size-fits-all deal that has caused injury and death. In
Canada, the story of PENTA is the cautionary tale for parents. (See pentaproject.net) This
was the unlicensed and damaging vaccine my son received.
I encourage every parent to read the vaccine
package inserts. Read everything. Ask questions of many people: parents,
doctors, vaccine makers, and nurses, and demand answers. If you are not
satisfied you have the right to say no. You have the right to wait and think
about it, and to research on your own. In the US, the Vaccine Injury Act has
prevented parents from suing a vaccine maker. Any compensation requires a "no
recently passed a law, SB277, mandating vaccines for all children who attend
both private and public schools.What can parents do in the face of such legislation?
Mandatory vaccination laws point to the degree to which
government owns the bodies of its citizens. Vaccination is a medical procedure
requiring the informed consent of parents. Any law that removes
the right to informed consent is unethical and immoral.
The ultimate protection from vaccine-induced
anaphylaxis and atopy in children is the right parents have to say no. SB277
has removed this consumer protection. And without meaningful screening by
health officials for underlying conditions and toxic burdens in children the
allergy epidemic will intensify.
After the experience I had with my son and vaccination—the
vaccine he received turned out to be an experimental vaccine,
unlicensed and caused widespread and documented injury that doctors have yet to
acknowledge and that also left my son injured and with severe allergies—I
realized I had been asleep. Yes, vaccines contain risk. But the fact that
government, doctors, the manufacturer risked my son's life (11,000+ injury
reports that included 15 deaths) to capitalize on a market opportunity takes
the risk to another level and category. That this could have been allowed to happen is the very reason for
informed consent. Being fully informed, finally, I refused further vaccines for
my son and my second child. I exercised my right to say no.
It is possible to ask the government for changes that might
include single vaccines and a schedule that delays shots until the kids are two
or three. We can implement a screening process. We can ask for a safety study
of the schedule as a whole—something that has never been done.
But the forces behind the vaccination
schedule are enormous. The profits from this mature market are huge. The new
mandatory vaccination bill SB277 in California, as well, which a majority of
California voters opposed, would suggest that negotiation is far from easy.
Regardless, it's imperative that parents make their voices heard.