Richard Kunin

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Biographical Information

"In 1964, Time Magazine featured him in its article “Head to Toe Hypnosis,” as having the first neurophysiology approach to medical hypnosis, a basis for a more-scientific method of psychotherapy. In 1969, he originated “The Mental Tune-Up,” a therapy based on linguistics and mood-training hypnosis. In 1972, Prevention Magazine wrote about Dr. Kunin in “He Cures Psychiatric Disorders with Nutrition,” as the first person to combine computer diet, vitamin and mineral testing, and hypnotherapy -- a prototype of holistic medicine. So, long before the word holistic was in use, Dr. Kunin had integrated hypnosis, behavior therapy, and orthomolecular medicine and psychiatry into a comprehensive model of general medical practice. Research into mineral metabolism led to his 1974 discovery that manganese treatment is successful in treating drug-induced tardive dyskinesia. This demonstration of a mineral therapy came at a time when most medical authorities were united against nutrition therapy.

"In 1975, Dr. Kunin was the first person to discover that aspirin blocks the skin-flush response to niacin (Vitamin B3) flush and to suggest that the anti-schizophrenic action of niacin is related to prostaglandins. In 1976, he was the first to introduce an individualized diet method based upon mood and energy effects, the Ortho-carbohydrate Diet. This led him that same year to co-found the Orthomolecular Medical Society, of which he was also president from 1979 to 1981.

"Publication of his best-selling book Mega-Nutrition in 1980 launched the Listen to Your Body Diet, ™ a method of balancing dietary carbohydrate, fat, and protein according to one's individual needs. Both Mega-Nutrition and his other best-seller, Mega-Nutrition for Women (1983), helped to define the role of orthomolecular nutrition in general medical practice... In 1993, Dr. Kunin was the first Interim President of the International Society for Orthomolecular Medicine (Toronto). The next year, he was the first to identify carnitine deficiency with myasthenia as being due to valproic acid and aspirin; and, while catching his breath, decided to found the Society for Orthomolecular-Health Medicine (OHM), a medical-education society and a memorial to Linus Pauling. These two organizations have paved the way for medical practice to begin to accept nutriceuticals on a par with pharmaceuticals. We are still at an early stage in this medical evolution however.

"In 1996, Dr. Kunin was the first to measure fluoride in hair and to demonstrate hair levels of up to 20 parts per million in an out-patient population, providing further evidence of a major public-health problem...

"That is another reason why Dr. Kunin says that the NHF’s mission of health freedom is so very important. Among other things, accomplishing this mission helps to spread the word that the orthomolecular movement remains dedicated to the message of Linus Pauling: “The right molecules in the right amounts.” And it thereby helps bring together the consciousness of health professionals and all of humanity in support of natural healing, healing by physiological and “orthomolecular” methods."[1]

He was a co-founder of the Orthomolecular Medical Society with Dr. Linus Pauling in 1976.

His son is Gregory Kunin


Resources and articles

Related Sourcewatch


  1. National Health Federation Richard Kunin, organizational web page, accessed July 20, 2013.