The Brain as a Health Management Control System - An Interview with Steve Richfield.
The Brain Is In Control
Imagine an extraordinary idea. Imagine that the brain as a control centre, not simply controlling bodily functions and systems, but also orchestrating health, enabling the immune system to operate optimally. This is the unique and revolutionary approach to health that is the work of Steve Richfield who is the only Central Metabolic Control System Therapist in the world.
Here is an interview with the engineer capturing the essence of his work and how he has cured many people of idiopathic or chronic illness by retraining a miswired brain that has resulted in a compromised immune system.
I am Janey Hood, a breast cancer survivor.
I had had a low temperature for around 45 years. After my diagnosis I decided my faulty temperature selection was compromising my immune system. Steve Richfield supported me to fix it. It may well be that my newly optimised immune system will not prevent a re-occurrence of cancer, but I observe I am much healthier than I was and this gives me some optimism for my future, enabling a better quality of life during the time I have remaining.
The Brain as the Health Centre.
Janey Hood : Welcome Steve, when did you realise that the brain might be, amongst other things, the health management control system?
Steve Richfield : Dr. Denis Wilson, the original inventor of body temperature resetting, once offered an early version of his "Doctor's Manual" that included extensive observational notes, for $50. I purchased this and carefully read and reread his notes. I gradually realized that while there was nothing to disprove his theory or rT3 diversion, that there was also little to support it. However, there was much to support control system "red tagging" of normal body temperature, especially his observation that general anesthesia often damaged temperature regulation. Further, I could see how his treatment for rT3 diversion could also work for red tagging, which would explain his partial success in treating these patients.
I posted a "T4 challenge test" (take a 25mcg Levoxyl and see how you feel - nothing, or like running like I did) to test whether a person had rT3 diversion or red tagging, and everyone was surprised to find that different people had different reactions - but rT3 diversion was common to people who were taking or had previously taken thyroid medications. As it turned out, Dr. Wilson's patients had previously all been given thyroid medications, as was common practice in the 1980s when Dr. Wilson first developed his methods, so OF COURSE he found rT3 diversion in his patients.
I phoned Dr. Wilson and commented that if his recommended SRT3 treatment was going to work, that it should work in small doses. I asked what doses seemed to be sufficient in the patients in which it succeeded. He commented that these patients usually responded to the smallest 15mcg dose, or the next size up. I asked him why he advised increasing doses MUCH higher than that when smaller doses failed. He answered that there was no other prospective treatment for these people, and high doses might make them feel a little better for a while, so why not?!!! The failure of low-dose SRT3 treatment would pretty much disprove rT3 diversion, so these patients had to have something very different wrong with them, leaving only my theory of red tagging. The presence of an initiating event like general anesthesia would serve to confirm red tagging.
After that, reflections on what other illnesses might be subject to brain control gone wrong showed many possibilities, each of which already had other theories that were commonly accepted. In most cases, simple tests akin to my T4 challenge test could be devised, to see which theory was most likely correct, or the "cure" was simple enough to attempt without proof of the underlying condition.
Medical researchers tend to be pretty good chemists. Where there is a chemical cure to be found, they have almost certainly already found it. The remaining "cure for ..." quests are pretty much all doomed to fail, because they presume that a chemical cure exists, when it probably does not exist. There are MANY ways to cure illnesses without poisoning them. Removing red tags is just one such approach.
How Body Temperature Affects our Lives
Janey Hood: So, what you are saying is, there is a connection between body temperature and health, how does that work?
Steve Richfield: There are four ways that body temperature affects our lives, and ruins our lives when it isn't working right.
1. All of our systems work a little differently when we are asleep, as compared with when we are awake. For example, our bowels shut down at night, so we can sleep through the night without having to empty them. Our brain broadcasts whether we are awake or asleep by switching our temperature between 97.4F at night, and 98.6C during the day. If/when our temperature gets stuck in one of the modes, especially when it gets stuck in our sleeping mode, serious problems develop. One problem that people often develop enormous hemispherical hard tummies that do NOT hang down like tummies that are make of fat. Another problem is that "sleeping" people need lots of adrenaline to make it through the day, and often run out of adrenaline before the day is over, resulting in adrenal fatigue.
2. To kill our bodies' invaders, our immune systems have had about 200 million years to evolve the most complex chemical reactions that are possible. The thing that limits the complexity of chemical reactions is temperature range, so the components of our immune systems now only work at one particular temperature. To make everything work, our brain shifts our temperatures around, enabling different parts of our immune systems with each change in temperature. When our temperature no longer cycles to various different temperatures as it should, the most common problems develop, these are autoimmune problems, where our immune systems becomes unable to accurately identify invaders, and ends up attacking healthy cells. Most age-related chronic illnesses are autoimmune, including COPD/asthma/emphysema, arthritis, lupus, and many more.
3. On hot days, healthy people often run their temperature up over 100F, which melts accumulated fats in their circulatory system. People whose temperatures are stuck low don't do this, so they tend to eventually clog their arteries. They also tend to develop kidney stones and gall stones, because at lower temperature, solids don't remain in solution.
4. As we accumulate genetic damage from radiation and other sources, cells become weakened as parts of their operation are disabled by mutations. Eventually, some cells may accumulate certain critical mutations and become cancerous. The most effective way known to kill off the most badly mutated cells is to slightly damage them with heat. The healthy cells can recover, while the severely damaged cells die. Healthy people do this every few years by running high fevers of ~104F, while people whose temperature is stuck low may never get above 99F. This not only affects susceptibility to cancer, but maintains healthier cells to better survive advancing age, and clears arteries of any residual fats that might have survived summer temperatures.
People whose temperature is stuck low tend to have many health problems as outlined above, and most don't live very long, resulting in people with low temperature dying of many different "proximal causes", so it has escaped common notice that erroneous body temperatures are killing so many people long before they grow old.
How The Brain Malfunctions
Janey Hood : "What sorts of things go wrong with the CMCS to cause problems like low body temperature?
Steve Richfield: Any malfunction of the CMCS, e.g. a tumor in the hypothalamus, is quite fatal. Otherwise, the problem stems from the CMCS doing its very best to solve a problem for which it either lacks sufficient information, or there is no solution.
This is akin to the Windows game of Minesweeper. There, you must use the clues displayed to clear a minefield while carefully avoiding the mines. However, this isn't always possible, because there could be more than one configuration of mines leading to exactly the same clues. Of course you try to uncover more clues, but often you must simply make a decision, and live or die with the result.
Similarly, what SHOULD your CMCS do if everything is working fine, then suddenly for no apparent reason everything goes haywire and you almost die? The rational thing would be to avoid ever doing again whatever you were doing at that particular instant. This is what happens when you receive general anesthesia. Various parameters including your body temperature at that moment become PERMANENTLY "red tagged" to be avoided for the rest of your life.
Similarly, what SHOULD a CMCS do with an operating mode that it has never in your lifetime ever tried? The rational thing would be to avoid using it in the future, unless that operating mode becomes absolutely necessary to keep you alive. This is what happens when your mother has been "red tagged" in some ways, and then non-genetically "passes" those red tags onto you while you are still in her womb.
This was the central epiphany that led to my present understanding of body temperature. Occam's Razor says to prefer the simplest explanation, and it doesn't get any simpler than there being absolutely nothing that is "broken". Your CMCS simply found itself in a situation where it made the most logical decision, but that decision turned out to have bad long-term consequences. Most people with low body temperature live through their childbearing years, so there is no Darwinian pressure for this to work any differently. You may not like being on a track to die in your 60s, but there is no objective evidence that this is any problem at all, other than you not liking where this is heading.
This brings the challenge of how to "repair" something that isn't broken. I often ask people how they might coerce a CMCS back into normal operation, and have been collecting a list of prospective approaches. Forcing correct operation for a while works to correct low body temperature, but this approach isn't possible in correcting morbid obesity because there is no way to "force" correct weight for a while. There, throwing their metabolism into a "change or die" situation has worked. Other approaches, like reward and punishment, have yet to be tried.
Central Metabolic Control System Theory and Conventional Medicine
Janey Hood: Steve, do you think this CMCS theory fits with current conventional medicine?
Steve Richfield: At first glance you wouldn't think there would be a problem, because both are (supposedly) based on good science. In practice however, there has been great resistance to applying the scientific method to patients. Some doctors even proclaim that it is unethical to experiment on patients, when this is often the only way to diagnose their problems. My own view is that medicine is moving into the world of pseudoscience, but I'll explain what is happening and you can make up your own mind.
When Dr. Denis Wilson first published his work, showing that general anesthesia was the biggest single cause of LBT, the American Anesthesiology Association commissioned a bogus study to "disprove" Dr. Wilson's entire body temperature theory. Dr. Wilson had shown that healthy people sleep at ~97.4F, and pop up to ~98.6F during the day. In the study, they measured the temperatures of a group of athletes at 8AM and found one subgroup at ~97.4F, one subgroup at ~98.6F, and others in between these two subgroups. Despite their own data fully supporting Dr. Wilson's theory, they erroneously concluded that body temperature can vary over a wide range, and that there is no set temperature like 98.6F. Their abstract only contains their erroneous bought-and-paid-for conclusion.
Now, this is taught in medical schools, every doctor "knows" this, and the American Anesthesiology Association proclaims that the "normal" body temperature is in the 97.something range, because after anesthesiology, most of their patients are in this range. There are many other areas of medicine having similar bad-science stories.
After these monumental screw ups, it is hard to even carry on rational conversations with doctors. There is a rule in logic that once you accept without question any erroneous assertion, that you can then prove any other erroneous assertion. Medicine has now fallen into this logical hole, supported by replacing scientific methodology with "statistical logic", from which I see no prospect of it emerging anytime soon. I have yet to meet a doctor with any recognizable skills in critical thinking.
It seems clear to me that at some point medicine will have to either re-establish a logical basis, or go the way of Traditional Chinese and become a ritualistic practice with little scientific basis, a path it is already well along.
With this as background, you are pretty much on your own dealing with your CMCS issues. Unfortunately, this is an area that is too complex for most people to navigate, especially after having lost ~20 IQ points to LBT. I never would have been able to deal with this without Dr. Wilson's help, Dr. Wilson credits Dr. Broda Barnes for laying the groundwork in this area, and you Jane, never would have been able to deal with this without my help. Now that we have learned about CMCS issues and regained our lost IQ points, we can help others who have fallen into the same trap as we were once in.
Can Fixing a Low Body Temperature Cure Illness?
Janey Hood: Have you managed to cure anyone who was ill, and can you give some examples?
Steve Richfield: Yes, but first lets understand our terms. "Cure" seems to have so many meanings that it is difficult to discuss. For example:
Healthy people get cancer about monthly, but their immune systems eliminate it. Some people with immunological impairment allow one of these developing cancers to grow. When you then eliminate one of these cancer but not the underlying immunological problem, so another cancer will almost certainly develop in the future, have you "cured" their cancer? I think not, but nonetheless billions of dollars are now being spent searching for such "cures".
True cures, where you have good reason to believe that you will never again be a repetition of your health problem, are rare. Many/most chronic health conditions have a figure 6 shaped cause and effect chain, where a root cause leads through several links to a self-sustaining loop at the end. Truly curing such conditions requires TWO actions:
1. Permanently stopping the root cause, and
2. Temporarily interrupting the self-sustaining loop at the end.
The first step to putting your CMCS right is to STOP doing the things that screw up its operation, and learn to sense your body temperature, so you can immediately recognize when your temperature is wrong and take immediate corrective action. Only then can any sort of CMCS treatment be durable.
LBT doesn't directly cause any conditions, but it allows any of several conditions to which you may be predisposed to develop, where they would otherwise have remained dormant. These conditions can could be fought separately as is the practice with "modern" medicine, or they can all be stopped by simply correcting the errant body temperature. Neither approach is a true "cure", but correcting LBT improves so many things in so many ways that it is the "low hanging fruit" on the health care tree. Further, some of the conditions that LBT addresses have no effective "modern" medical treatment, leaving LBT correction as the only effective action that is available.
I have worked with more than 100 people to correct their LBT. However, only about 10% of those who learn about LBT resetting decide to do it, so these 100 people are from a population of ~1,000 who considered resetting their LBT. Probably ~80% were able to permanently correct their LBT. That group probably eliminated ~80% of their health problems by resetting their LBT. So, from end-to-end, from 1000 people, 100 decide to correct their LBT, 80 are successful, and the health problems of the equivalent of 64 people are turned around, for an overall success rate of ~6.4%. If all of the lack-of-motivation based shortcomings were eliminated, that ~6.4% would be ~80%. Better equipment and methods could push that 80% up even further.
My first patient was me. I had idiopathic atrial fibrillation, for which there was no effective treatment, along with a gigantic hemispherical tummy. Both promptly resolved when I reset my temperature.
My 2nd person was my neighbor Dan, who had been given another 6 weeks to live. Dan was dying because his quadruple bypassed heart was clogging up again, but they couldn't operate because his diabetes was out of control even on three prescription meds. When he reset his temperature, Dan's heart problems quickly resolved, but Dan almost poisoned himself because his diabetes had also resolved, but he was still taking his 3 prescription meds. Dan quickly ate some candy bars and stopped taking his diabetic meds, and was OK. Two weeks later Dan saw his doctor, who did the usual blood tests that were all normal, including his H-A1C test that was so low it indicated that he never had diabetes!!! Dan did well, working hard as an outdoor electrical installer for the next 10 years, but feeling OK he let his temperature drop again, and Dan died suddenly of a stroke about a year later. Dan's story shows that you must NEVER let your guard down.
Along the way there were several remarkable people, like Kim who wanted to reset her temperature despite being out-of-control hypothyroid, with a TSH of 280 and many hypothyroid symptoms. Thyroid meds made her sick, but she reasoned that most of her problems were temperature-related. I explained that the conventional wisdom was that she couldn't be reset with such a messed up thyroid, but I would help as best I could if she wanted to try. Kim succeeded, and eliminated all of her symptoms except her edema, which was secondary to her thyroid problems. Kim then discovered that at normal temperature she could tolerate her thyroid meds, so she brought her TSH down to where it belonged. Kim's experience proved Dr. Wilson's theory that "hypothyroid symptoms" were actually LBT symptoms, but since nearly everyone who was hypothyroid also had LBT, these symptoms couldn't be separated.
There was a 5-year-old boy who had really serious asthma, but his mother wanted to wait to reset his temperature because he was sick and running a fever. I explained to his mother that it might be possible for us USE his fever to do the resetting, by carefully monitoring his temperature and not allowing it to go below 98.6F as he recovered from his illness. In a few days his mother was ecstatic, because her son was outside running and playing - for the first time in his life!!!
Fast forwarding a hundred or so patients, is you Janey, you are another success story and is unusual in many ways, especially for your nearly-impossible mid-winter reset, which is only possible with dedicated maniacal motivation. You are living proof that with enough motivation, people can reset even in the worst of circumstances.
How To Fix Low Body Temperature or CMCS Malfunction
Janey Hood: How do people interested in your CMCS therapy get started?
1. Be sick enough to be sufficiently motivated. This is unfortunate, because nearly all heart disease is secondary to LBT, and for about half of these people, their first symptom is sudden death. I ask everyone why they want to reset, to see if they are sufficiently motivated to succeed.
2. Learn to sense and guesstimate your temperature to within +/-0.2F=0.1C. Somewhere around 15% of people are either unable to do this, or lack sufficient motivation. My failure rate with these people is 100%, so I no longer even try. This skill is necessary to avoid Dan's fate.
3. If you have enough of an engineering mindset, you can do this yourself. Control systems engineers typically ask a few questions to resolve any points of confusion, and then prefer their own skills to my long-distance skills. However, if you aren't into the nuts and bolts of such things, and few people are, it is best to work with someone like you Jane, or me.
The important qualifications seem to be:
1. A solid understanding the control system theory involved, so they can deal with unusual situations.
2. Some understanding of endocrinology - enough to recognize when glands aren't doing their jobs.
3. Having reset their own temperature. Success is all about feeling and sensing what is happening in your body, so they need this experience to be able to relate, guide, and empathize with you and how you feel.
4. Contacts when they find themselves over their heads. I have specialists I call when I run into something I don't understand.
Steve lives in an alternate reality, where people's brains control their bodies instead of just being along for the ride.
Steve is a control systems engineer who understands how ordinary and even expected control system "challenges" completely explains many "idiopathic" chronic illnesses. Extrapolating, Steve sees how seemingly trivial interventions can often set these things right. Many people have done these things, cured their chronic illnesses, and turned their lives around.
If you are a control systems engineer, you will just LOVE Steve's approach to chronic illnesses. If you don't happen to be a control systems engineer, to avoid years of additional education, you may have to accept some things on faith.
Steve's skills seem most valuable for restoring correct body temperature because of the lack of other effective approaches, though he has successfully applied his approach to address numerous other illnesses ranging from morbid obesity to glaucoma.
I have no idea if I have reduced my likelihood of having a recurrence of breast cancer by fixing my low body temperature. I do know that my immune system seems to be operating optimally because many of my subset cumulative illnesses are reversing or have been fixed since resetting. I have Steve to thank for this.
© 2013 Janey Hood