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I have coauthored 19 peer-reviewed medical research papers on the management of relative nutritional deficiencies. This website is dedicated to providing information to those who desire to replicate the research findings documented in these papers. Alvin Stein, MD

If the physician is truly getting patients healthier, then many more drugs will be stopped than started in the medical practice. — Marty Hinz, MD 2015

Most of the most common drugs prescribed are for problems that are actually caused by a nutritional deficiency. While treating a nutritional deficiency with drugs has become the norm, this approach does nothing to correct the nutritional deficiency. The heart of this 21 year medical research project (since 1994) outlines a nutritional approach where over 80% of the drugs currently prescribed in a general medical practice are no longer needed as the patients get healthier. 

  • An “absolute nutritional deficiency” occurs when there are not enough nutrients in the diet. An example of this is scurvy caused by vitamin C deficiency. When normal intake of vitamin C is once again established, the scurvy is controlled.
  • A “relative nutritional deficiency” (RND) occurs when there is a nutritional need that cannot be met even with the patient on an optimal diet. Severe burn and trauma patients may develop RNDs.

The amount of research done in the area of relative nutritional deficiencies is so limited that the scientific papers I have coauthored represent 15% of all literature published on the topic. In the process we have identified the most prolific and far-reaching relative nutritional deficiency constellation ever published; click here for a partial list.  Click here to download the Relative Nutritional Deficiencies paper. The following paragraph is from that paper.


PUBLISHED DEFINITION: A nutrient is any substance that facilitates normal system function. A drug is any substance that induces abnormal system function. A nutrient may become a drug. A drug may not become a nutrient.


Under this definition, the way most nutrients are given converts them to drugs when one or more systems in the body begin to function abnormally.

Literature notes: “5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) is a nutrient. When it is administered as a single agent, dopamine depletion may occur. If it induces dopamine depletion, then 5-HTP no longer functions as a nutrient; it is a drug. L-dopa may be administered as a nutrient. When it is administered as a single agent, serotonin depletion may occur. If it induces serotonin depletion, then L-dopa no longer functions as a nutrient; it is a drug.”

When nutrients are given properly there are no side effects. Using a drug or turning a nutrient into a drug is associated with side effects, abnormal system function, and suboptimal treatment results.

Depletion b-w1