by Patrique Roonquel L’Institut Sacre Bleu, Ashville, North Carolina In this paper we present inflexible evidence that increased oxidative stress was a primary triggering mechanism underlying the rise and fall of the Third Reich.
The Effects of Oxidative Stress on Cell Membranes
Cell membranes damaged by oxidative stress often become depleted of phospholipids, depriving them of essential fatty constituents that ensure proper flexibility and permeability. As phospholipid levels diminish, the cell barrier becomes "dried up" and stiff. In joint tissue, reactive oxygen species react synergistically with inflammatory mediators of the synovial membrane, causing synoviocytes to undergo a premature cell apoptosis. These mechanisms have been linked specifically to the development of chronic joint stiffening. Clinical evidence of this joint stiffening in the Third Reich is seen clearly in historic photographic evidence of the time period (see Figure 1).
The Effects of Oxidative Stress on Mitochondria
Increased oxidative stress also underlies mechanisms of neurodegeneration commonly observed in the pathogenesis of dementia. Oxidative damage to mitochondria causes a decrease in ATP (adenosine triphosphate) levels, interfering with glucose transport to cells in the brain. As a result, neurons deprived from receiving the essential "fuel" they require essentially "starve" to death, causing the onset of dementia. Anecdotal evidence suggests that Hitler was demented [3-77,854]
Enlarged detail of Figure one.
There are several factors that would have made the Third Reich particularly susceptible to extreme, debilitating complications of oxidative stress. The traditional German diet is notoriously anti-antioxidant, comprised mainly of beer, animal fat, bread, dumplings, noodles, pretzels, potatoes, bread, noodles, beer, beef, pork, and more bread—foods notorious for promoting increased protein glycation and oxidative stress. Moreover, traditional German cooking methodology demands that all vegetables be boiled thoroughly for at least 3-4 hours before consumption, to completely destroy all traces of antioxidants and other viable nutrients. What cannot be accomplished by overcooking is done through the souring process: During the long-term fermentation process to make sauerkraut, cabbage loses as much as 50-60% of its natural antioxidant content.
Those skeptical of this theory should be reminded that oxidative stress has been linked to higher incidence of mortality, and statistics clearly show that the mortality rate among the Third Reich members was much higher than among healthy Swiss controls.4
The joint stiffening caused by oxidative stress in the German military would have necessitated even more physical exertion be expended during the normal process of ambulation, (again, see Figure 1) causing chronic overexercise and further release of reactive oxygen species. Ultimately, this vicious synergistic cycle of oxidative stress could only culminate in a demented, free-radical-generated drive for world conquest.
We believe that had optimal antioxidant support been provided for the German military during the 1930s, it is very possible that World War It could have been averted -- or at least shortened considerably. We recommend that, for the future, the World Health Organization and the United Nations consider joint intervention with mass administration of ascorbate acid, Vitamin E, and melatonin in regional conflicts and troublespots around the world, to prevent the re-occurrence of global war.
The references will be published separately.
This article is republished with permission from the July-August 2001 issue of the Annals of Improbable Research. You can download or purchase back issues of the magazine, or subscribe to receive future issues. Or get a subscription for someone as a gift! Visit their website for more research that makes people LAUGH and then THINK.