Although the majority of vegetarians and drugless practitioners recommend and prescribe cod-liver oil to children and adults, I have consistently rejected this grease. About twelve years ago there came out of England, from thoroughly orthodox medical sources, evidences that I am no longer to stand alone in this matter. The British Medical Journal (Aug. 1929) declares that "there is some difference of opinion as to the effects of cod-liver oil in ordinary doses, and the present evidence is suggestive enough to warrant a definite answer to the question: "Can cod-liver oil do harm?"
Agduhr testing the oil on rabbits and Malmberg using children for his tests, both came to the conclusion that oil is harmful to the heart, and is often responsible for cases of death in children. Agduhr working with Dr. N. Stenstron, proved definitely, by animal experimentation, that cod-liver oil produces pathological changes in the heart muscle. P. Hendricksen concludes, from his tests, that large doses may produce general cell degeneration throughout the body. C. W. Herlitz, I. Jundell and F. Wahlgre, after conducting an extensive and elaborate series of experiments, showed that doses quite comparable with those given to children in ordinary practice can produce considerable degeneration in the heart muscle. These men feel that the public should be warned of these dangers as well as of the dangers from radiated milk.
In an article in the British Medical Journal, Dr. A. A. Osman shows that many of the cases of marked debility of children are cases of ketosis--a form of disturbed sugar metabolism. He says that the treatment of such conditions with cod-liver oil increases the ketosis, yet many hundreds of children so suffering have been treated with this oil. Cod-liver oil increases rather than relieves the symptoms of ketosis.