When my sister was diagnosed with stage four breast cancer, we looked for every avenue to help her find a cure. One of our good friends was relentlessly encouraging her to go see Dr Gonzales in New York City. He had been healing people with cancer using alternative methods for many years. One of his most famous clients was Suzanne Somers. She wrote about him in her book Knock Out, this made him a national icon on the subject. We, of course, were very skeptical but wanted to leave no stone unturned. We went to his office to hear what he had to say. The result was a candid conversation about cancer and how people can help heal ourselves. He also spoke about how he believes big pharmaceutical companies are preventing the sharing of the knowledge he has discovered (a trust story for another day). After several hours of talking, I asked him if trust had an impact on peoples ability to survive cancer. Here is what he had to say…
If you would prefer to read the text version of the conversation, click here
Dr. Gonzalez: I’m Dr. Nicholas Gonzales, a classically trained immunologist who now does an alternative therapy for cancer using primarily a nutrition approach. And I’m on the Trust Tour.
Dr. Gonzalez: When people don’t trust something where their life’s at stake, it creates an anxiety, a state of anxiety. Certain neurological processes occur that tend to break the body down. It’s like a stress response. The lack of faith or anxiety create a stress response, and in a stress response, the body breaks down tissue in order to help you deal with – create energy to help you deal with the stress, but it’s the antithesis of healing. In healing you need to be relaxed and let faith and trust create a sense of relaxation.
One of the – he’s actually on my website. He was on Discovery, so I can actually use his name. His name was Mort. And he had Stage IV pancreatic cancer into his liver, into his bone, into his his lung. And I didn’t even think I could get him up.
He walked in the first day, and he was like 70 years old. And they had already told him they didn’t want to – he was lucky. They didn’t want to do chemo. He was 70 years old. They said, “It would only kill you, so you’re not going to do chemo. You have two months.” They told his wife. She had a Ph.D. He was an archeologist by training, although he worked in business and never practiced archeology. His wife had a Ph.D., so they were very educated.
And they said chemo was a waste of time. So it wasn’t even an issue. The first day I met him I was kind of nervous. He’s got cancer everywhere. He said, “I know you’re going to do the best you can do, and I believe I’m going to get well on your program. And if I don’t, I’ve made my choice.” And it was like he was calmer than I was.
Todd Welch: Right.
Dr. Gonzalez: He had more faith in me than I had faith in myself. I mean, I knew I want as going to do my best. I wouldn’t have taken him if I didn’t think I could get it.
Todd Welch: Your point was he believed.
Dr. Gonzalez: He believed so strongly that I was going to – and it wasn’t – this guy was not an idiot. I mean, he had a masters in archeology from the Sorbonne in France. He was – and his wife was a professor in English literature, and she was – they lived in Florida, and they were – she had retired.
He said, “I know you’re going to do the best you can do.” This was 1991 before I was even well known. I didn’t – he read about me in some alternative journal. He said, “I know you’re going to do the best you can. I know ______. I studied you. I know that no one else has else has the results you had ______ ______. I may die, but I absolutely believe this is going to be the best therapy for me.”
And he got well. He got well. He just – absolutely miraculous. I mean, his tumors just went away. He died in 1986 when he was 86 because he drove his – he shouldn’t have been driving. He drove his car off the side of the road in Orlando where he lived. He ended up in rehab. He didn’t die of cancer. He had no cancer when he died, but he just died of old age basically and being in a bad car accident. Eighty-six years old when he died.
Todd Welch: You said when we came in that you can’t give faith. So how do you get it?
Dr. Gonzalez: You can’t. It’s something that –
Todd Welch: It’s something that’s got to come inside.
Dr. Gonzalez: It’s one thing I’ve learned too. We don’t have patients meet. We did initially 15, 20 years ago. We did. But what we learned is fear is contagious. You can catch fear from somebody, but you can’t catch faith.
I had one group – it happened to be women, but it also happened with a group of men. I had six women meeting here in New York City. They just met in my office one by one and got to know each other. So we encouraged it. I thought that’s great. Bernie Siegel said, “I don’t want patients to meet. Absolute worst things you can ever do.”
Five of them were really upbeat and positive. One of them was kind of a sourpuss and negative. I ended up with six, nervous, anxious people. Their faith and positive outlook didn’t change the negative one. The negative one changed them.
What I learned from that is faith is not catchable but fear and anxiety are when you have cancer. When you have cancer you’re frightened. So they’re very susceptible. One of them actually had their phone changed to an unlisted number. She didn’t want to talk to anyone else in the group because – this is a true story.
I said after that I’m never going to have my patients meet. And this goes back to what you said two hours ago, “Can we speak to people?” Even my patients who have done well I don’t generally – you meet somebody in the office that’s fine. I have patients that became great friends, but we don’t encourage it ourselves. If it happens through an act of god or chance or the health food store, fine.
Todd Welch: Right. Because you’re concerned about the negative thing.
Dr. Gonzalez: Yeah, working both ways. So if you have two – in that group there were six patients. Five of them were positive and upbeat. One of them was, “How do we know this is going to work? How do we know Gonzales knows this?” I ended up with six people with doubts, fear and anxiety. What I learned there is fear and anxiety are catchable but faith isn’t. Faith has to come from within. It’s just the way it is.
Like that guy, I still, to this day, don’t know why. I asked him in later years, “Why did you have such faith that first day?” He said, “I just knew.” He said, “I just knew.”
Todd Welch: Just knowing.
Dr. Gonzalez: He just knew. He knew. And I have a lot of patients that just know this is what they have to do. And we discourage people that don’t and that are really doubtful about it.
Your situation is unique because you have a doctor telling you she’s going to be able to cure you, and I understand. I mean, that’s a reasonable – you’re not doubting me. You have a reasonable option that you’re considering. That’s a different issue. Although, I would tell you in Mort’s case, they offered him a reasonable option. But that’s him. That’s who he is. You don’t have to be him. He’s not a better person. He’s different.
Todd Welch: Well, the last thing I want – so can I – what you just said I recorded, and it’s on here. So is it okay if I post that on the blog?
Dr. Gonzalez: Sure.