Cancer conspiracy theories involve myriad aspects of the research, diagnosis, treatment, and survival of cancer. One of the most prominent theories is that there's a cure for cancer, kept on the shelf by the government and Big Pharma, who rake in so much cash treating the disease they don't want a cure. Other theorists believe the US has weaponized cancer, and administered it to dissidents who need to be silenced.Here are some of the most prominent cancer conspiracies, many of which have been debunked or are supported by little to no evidence, and the stories behind them.
Marijuana Cures Cancer, and the Government Won't Allow It
No natural compound has been put forth more often as a cure for cancer than marijuana. Scores of alternative medicine websites insist research has proven THC can kill cancer, but the mainstream media, government, and pharma industry are working together to suppress it, and punish dissenters. But medical journals, skeptical websites, and researchers insist said research hasn't been proven to be efficacious in humans.Which one is the truth? Well, marijuana has a proven pain-relief effect, and has also been known to increase the appetite of people with cancer, or those going through chemo. So, in that respect, it's beneficial, but not a cure. Research shows THC slows or inhibits growth in cancer cells grown in petri dishes, and in mice. Early human trials show no effect in curing or preventing the disease, however. Proponents of cannabis treatments point out that draconian restrictions by the US government prevent additional research on marijuana as a cancer cure.
Big Pharma Suppresses Natural Cancer Cures
You don't have to look hard to find websites that sell miracle cancer treatments Big Pharma doesn't want you to know about. These dubious sources offer everything from cannabis oil and coffee enemas to magnets and extreme diets. According to this conspiracy theory, only a few renegade doctors are sharing the truth about these cures, while the pharma industry works hard (or even kills) to keep them unknown so they can push harmful chemotherapy and radiation.Unfortunately, most of these "natural cures" have never been studied in any satisfactory way. Some, such as coffee enemas and radical diets, have even proven harmful to cancer patients. If natural compounds could cure cancer, pharmaceutical companies would make untold millions turning them into cancer treatments. Furthermore, if they were truly being suppressed, nobody would know about them in the first place. Doctors don't offer them because they don't work.
Cancer Is Massively Overdiagnosed for Financial Gain
Does the cancer industry purposefully misdiagnose healthy people with cancer in order to make huge sums of money from treatments? This conspiracy theory exploded in 2014 when a Journal of American Medical Association (JAMA) piece called "Overdiagnosis and Overtreatment in Cancer" was published, apparently blowing the lid off a $100 billion scam that killed millions of people.
The JAMA study offered evidence of doctors diagnosing many growths, benign lesions, and tumors as cancerous, and of cancer screenings being over-performed, leading to non-harmful cancers being treated. However, this isn't a conspiracy, but a normal course correction, of a type medical field makes all the time. As a result of the study, guidelines on breast and prostate cancer screenings were changed, and doctors were encouraged to hold off on treating benign lesions.One last thing to consider - if over-diagnosis were putting billions in the pocket of Big Pharma, why make the scam public?
Alternative Cancer Researchers Are Being Murdered
Rumors began circulating in June 2015 that a number of holistic doctors and maverick researchers had been murdered by the pharmaceutical industry. The number of purported murders varies between a dozen and fifty. Alternative medicine websites see this alleged murder spree as a declaration of war against holistic medicine.
The evidence? Jeffrey Bradstreet was testing a pioneering cure for autism and cancer when he was shot in the chest. Two Canadian researchers were mysteriously murdered in late 2015. British cancer researcher Alan Clarke and Seattle cancer researcher Cheryl Deboer also died.However, like most theories involving long lists of people who mysteriously died, this dead doctors plot relies on coincidence mistaken for conspiracy. Many of doctors who died in this period were chiropractors, while several others were women killed in acts of intimate partner violence, not government assassinations. What's more, Bradstreet was no said - he was implicated in the deaths of five patients who were undergoing trials of his maverick drug. Clarke was found hanging in a fetish suit, likely dealing with depression after his wife was diagnosed with cancer.