Britain’s “Court of Protection” makes decisions, in private, about the most vulnerable people in society. It makes decisions about incarcerating the mentally ill, taking children from families, including the case of Rachel Pullen who was deemed not intelligent enough to have children.

The Court has even banned a man with a low IQ from having any sexual relations and, with eery similarity to early 20th Century eugenics courts, has enforced abortions and the sterilization of citizens.

The Guardian has reported that Sir Nicholas Wall, head judge of the Court, is calling for opening the Court to the public. Whilst many will welcome that proposal, other experts would claim that this does not go far enough. The Court of Protection’s use of force against mental patients not only demonstrates a lack of empathy it should also be an indictment against modern society. It also demonstrates that the court is completely unaware of developments in medical science which attribute mental illness not to genetics, but to digestive wellness and nutrition.

Gut and Psychology Syndrome or Genetics?

The old paradigm informing the Court of Protection is that mental health is caused by human genetics and cannot be treated or cured. In fact, researchers have shown that  approximately 90% of the genetic material in the body are contained in the gut flora. We have many more nerve cells in the gut than we have in the brain and digestive disorders are almost universal amongst mental patients. Hippocrates stated that all disease begins in the gut, but modern medicine does not make that connection.

Dr Natasha Campbell-McBride MD, MMeDSci (Neurology), MMedSci (Human Nutrition) (see, represents a new wave of neurology and nutrition, which speaks out against those who say that mental wellness is purely a genetic issue to be dealt with by force such as that imposed by Britain’s Court of Protection. Dr Natasha’s journey began after her son was diagnosed with autism. She has since used her protocol to treat him off the autistic spectrum. Her self help books and Cambridge Nutrition Clinic have helped many other parents achieve this previously unattainable outcome.

Dr Natasha has demonstrated that healing the gut will heal the brain. She initially removes those things which are hard to digest such as gluten, casein and lactose, introduces foods to nourish the gut wall and help the body detox and introduces probiotics to re-populate the gut with beneficial bacteria.

It should come as no surprise that the medical establishment believe that mental health is a genetic issue, because children inherit their gut flora from their parents. Researchers such as Francis Pottenger demonstrated that it takes three generations of deficient diets to cause mental illness, infertility and chronic disease and many people today are in the third generation of modern processed food and exposure to modern, toxic chemicals.

The new Gut & Psychology Syndrome paradigm suggests that openness is not the only issue with Britain’s Court of Protection. It suggests that force should not be applied to mental patients. That they should instead receive compassion and nutritional therapy, which could be provided in the light of day via the National Health Service if only it would adopt this holistic approach.

Counterproductive “justice”

Riadh T. Abed, published in the British Medical Bulletin, explains that tyranny can cause mental issues. Would, for example, a moderately impaired individual collapse into total mental disintegration if a secret eugenics / bio-ethics court stripped them of their liberty to pro-create, forced an unwanted abortion upon them or took their children? Could the court’s application or even the threat of tyrannical force actually create the very mental health problems this court claims to counteract?

Unfortunately we do not know the impacts of these courts, whether miscarriages of justice have occurred or if powers have been abused if they remain secret. Secrecy will also stifle debate about other solutions such as the use of nutritional therapy. This is why the court should be opened up, not only to scrutiny, but also to the trial by jury, which Habeus Corpus was supposed to provide for all. This should also be the case with our secret family courts which have the power to remove children from families and to affect settlements between couples who separate.

It is claimed that secrecy helps protect the vulnerable. There is however a more compelling argument that our security is derived from our liberties, with due process and a rule of law being the principle source of our security and liberty.

Maybe Benjamin Franklin was indeed correct in 1818 when he stated that “They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety”.

Also, given that the Court of Protection is making judgment on the effects of a medical condition, which is mental health, maybe they should be bound, as physicians are, to the Hippocratic Oath. It states that warmth and sympathy can outweigh the benefits of drugs or the surgeon’s knife and, I will add, can outweigh the benefits of a court order. The oath spends much time warning against inappropriate interventions, yet specifically commands that physicians use nutrition to benefit the sick.

Philip Ridley is the London Chapter Leader of the Weston A. Price Foundation. (

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