Alive & Well AIDS Alternatives is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit support, education and health advocacy network founded in 1995 by a group of HIV positive diagnosed men and women. Our advisory board includes medical doctors, scientists, attorneys, journalists, business professionals, university professors, health experts and human rights leaders.
Alive & Well is not a philosophy, belief system or authoritarian organization. We do not tell you what to think, how to live, or what to do. Our mission is to inspire productive dialogue and vital research in order to bring about healthy solutions to the global tragedy of AIDS. We encourage independent thinking, responsible and respectful behavior, and healthy life choices. We honor your right to make your own informed decisions regarding HIV and AIDS.
Alive & Well does not promote conspiracy theories or cures or any information not referenced from medical or scientific journals, government publications, international health agencies, or recognized news sources. We offer only verifiable data that can help you distinguish between fear and facts.
Most, if not all impartial scientific findings on AIDS contrast with orthodox views and mainstream opinions. Based on this growing body of scientific, medical, and epidemiological evidence, Alive & Well provides information that raises questions about the accuracy of HIV tests, the safety and effectiveness of AIDS drug treatment, and the validity of most common assumptions about HIV and AIDS. Our mission is to open much needed dialogue on HIV, to advocate for unprejudiced scientific research on AIDS, to assist people in making truly informed decisions about their lives and health, and to provide legal, medical and peer support for HIV positives seeking immune-enhancing alternatives to toxic AIDS interventions.
Through our web site, book, films and community events, Alive & Well offers a carefully researched presentation of medical and scientific facts on HIV and AIDS unavailable through most orthodox AIDS organizations and unreported by most media. Our free services include referrals to holistic healthcare providers and legal assistance for HIV positives threatened with loss of employment, insurance, child custody or human rights based on informed decisions to decline toxic AIDS drugs.
Alive & Well works locally by sponsoring a yearly calendar of free community events, and works globally by sharing our resources with individuals and organizations throughout the world promoting open dialogue and informed choice with regard to HIV, AIDS and health.
Unlike most AIDS organizations, Alive & Well does not solicit or accept funding from the pharmaceutical industry, federal or local government, or any entity that may limit public access to factual information on HIV, AIDS and health. It’s people like you that enable Alive & Well to share life-affirming news and important facts about HIV and AIDS that open avenues for healthy solutions.
This grassroots base of support enables us to operate without the conflicts of interest that plague many established AIDS efforts. Being independent keeps our efforts practical and dynamic with services shaped by the needs of people dealing with real life issues of HIV and AIDS. To support our efforts with tax-deductible donation, please click here.
Founder/director Christine Maggiore tested HIV positive in 1992 and was given five to seven years to live. In response to this dire prognosis, she became a public speaker and educator for AIDS Project Los Angeles and LA Shanti Foundation as well as a founding board member of Women at Risk. A series of conflicting HIV test results in 1993 inspired questions about her diagnosis as well as the AIDS information she taught and was teaching others. A search for answers ultimately changed the direction of her public service and inspired the creation of Alive & Well.
The Alive & Well web site introduces scientific challenges to widely held beliefs about HIV and AIDS and explains these in simple terms. You'll find surprising facts and insights into why testing HIV positive is not a death sentence or even a reliable indicator of infection with HIV, and discover how unfounded estimates and unfulfilled predictions have shaped public perception of AIDS.
The effects of our web site can be measured in the hundreds of messages we receive each month from grateful people across the globe. The communications arrive from almost everywhere and just about everyone: a Maasai village in Kenya, a chiropractor’s office in Connecticut, from HIV positives swearing off and swearing by the drugs, from AIDS educators, HIV counselors, doctors and nurses, journalists, students, and surviving partners, friends and family of those passed on—all expressing appreciation for a new way to understand AIDS.
We invite you to use the articles, information, references, and links at our site to conduct your own investigation and arrive at your own conclusions about HIV and AIDS. We also encourage you to send us your thoughts, ideas and suggestions—your input is invaluable to our progress.
President of Toxi-Health International
Doctor of Chiropractic and Homeopathic Medicine
Family Wellness Center
Los Angeles, CA
Author of Radical Healing
New York, NY
Adjunct Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology University of Miami School of Medicine
Medical Advisor for the Physician’s Committee for Responsible Medicine
Medical Doctor and Naturopath
Santa Monica, CA
Author of The Gift of Fear
President of Gavin de Becker, Inc.
Founder and Chair of The Domestic Violence Council
Los Angeles, CA
Professor Emeritus of Pathology
University of Toronto
Saint Cezaire sur Siagne, France
Member of the National Academy of Sciences
Professor of Molecular and Cell Biology
University of California, Berkeley
Professor of Medical Physics
University of Western Australia
Assistant Clinical Professor of Pediatrics
University of Southern California Medical Center
Los Angeles, CA
Former director of El Patronato Veracruzano de Lucha Contra el SIDA
Professor of African History
California State University, Chico
Specialist, Infectious and Tropical Diseases
Cornell Medical Center
New York, NY
Former Science Correspondent for London Sunday Times
Former Professor of Medicine
University of Alabama at Birmingham
Medical Doctor and Homeopath
Founder of Steiner Holistic Medical Center
Doctor of Oriental Medicine
Los Angeles, CA
Program Director for the Department of Pathology, Anatomy, Cell Biology and Bioengineering
University of Illinois at Chicago
1993 Nobel Laureate in Chemistry
La Jolla, CA
Editor and Publisher of Mothering Magazine
Santa Fe, NM
Creator of Protease Inhibitors
Visiting Professor at University of California, Berkeley
San Francisco, CA
Creator of HIV Diagnostics
Founding Scientist, Amgen
Founder of EarthSave Foundation
Author of Diet for a New America and Reclaiming Our Health
Holistic Medical Doctor
San Francisco, CA
Holistic Medical Doctor
Carson City, NV
Professor of Medicine (retired)
Harvard Medical School
Johns Hopkins University
President of Pantox Laboratories
San Diego, CA
Professor of Emergency Medicine
Royal Perth Hospital
University of Western Australia
Professor of Medicine
University of Miami School of Medicine
Chair of Political Science Department
University of Hawaii, Honolulu
Coordinator for Task Force on Children's Nutrition Rights
Member of World Alliance on Nutrition and Human Rights
Co-founder of La Leche League International
Founder, Another Look at HIV and Breastfeeding
In 1992, I took what is commonly referred to as an HIV test. I had no symptoms of illness, no particular risks or fears, just a new doctor who insisted the test should be part of a regular medical exam. What began as a simple check up turned from routine to life altering when my results came back HIV positive.
Putting aside my shock and shame, I immediately sought out an AIDS specialist. This doctor declared that my test was not positive, not enough to be considered conclusive, anyway. Frightened and confused but hopeful, I followed his recommendations to take the test again along with other lab work to evaluate everything from my cholesterol to T cells.
According to the specialist, the results of this second HIV test were indisputably positive and my progression from somewhat positive to conclusively positive indicated a recent infection with HIV. I accepted his explanation even though the circumstances of my life excluded the possibility of a new infection.
Despite my positive diagnosis, the doctor declared me exceptionally healthy. He also told me that despite my exceptional health, there was nothing I could do to prevent devastating disease and an eventual death from AIDS. According to official estimates, I had between five and seven years to live.
The doctor warned me against wasting money on vitamins and other “foolish” attempts to save my immune system. Instead he advised I wait to become sick and then take AZT, a drug with severe side effects that could possibly make me sicker. I went directly from his office to a health food store in search of the forbidden vitamins. The following day, I began to look for a new AIDS specialist.
Life as I had lived, planned and hoped came to a grinding halt. I lost interest in my job running a clothing company I started in 1986 and had nurtured into a multi-million dollar enterprise. I gave up my goal of earning an MBA and dropped out of business school. Big Sisters of America immediately dropped me from their mentorship program when I confided to having tested HIV positive. Feeling like a cross between a leper and a total loser, I decided to keep my tragedy a secret. I stopped spending time with family and all but a few close friends. Instead, I attended AIDS seminars and joined a support group for HIV positive women where once a week we were encouraged to compare notes on our fears and frustrations, mention any potential symptoms, and lament the lousy deal we'd all been handed.
My AIDS activism began by accident when a friend, moved by my plight, tried to volunteer at AIDS Project Los Angeles (APLA) and was turned away. Incensed that a warm, intelligent woman with the sincerest of motivations would be treated with such disregard, I complained to the men in charge. Before I could finish my reprimand, I had been drafted into their public speaker's bureau.
Almost immediately, I was touring local high schools and colleges on behalf of APLA. I appeared as the person that HIV should never have happened to—a white, heterosexual, non-IV drug using business professional. APLA booked me for a year's worth of engagements before I'd even finished their training course. I made audiences laugh, cry, and most importantly scared since I seemed to embody the slogan that everyone is at risk for AIDS.
My suggestions for improving the women's HIV support group at LA Shanti turned into an invitation to speak for that organization which led to a position on the founding board of yet another AIDS group, Women At Risk.
Although my involvement in AIDS work began unintentionally, I took on my assignments with great passion and deepening sense that these efforts would give meaning to the tragedy that was now my life. I never for a moment imagined a future that might deviate from where I believed I was headed.
But then a year or so into my diagnosis and public service, and after interviewing half a dozen AIDS doctors whose recommendations ranged from immediate drug therapy to world travel, I found an anomaly among AIDS specialists—a doctor who didn't routinely fill people with toxic pharmaceuticals and lethal predictions. She treated me as an individual rather than an impending statistic, and in doing so noticed my good health. She said I didn't fit the profile of an AIDS patient, and urged me to take another HIV test. Afraid to raise my hopes, at first I refused. When I finally found the courage to retest, the result was inconclusive. Further testing produced a series of unsettling, contradictory diagnoses: a positive, followed by a negative, followed by another positive.
Confused by a personal situation that defied all the rules I'd been so passionately preaching as a public speaker, I turned for help to the AIDS groups where I worked. Instead of finding answers, I found my questions were dismissed and that persisting with my line of inquiry resulted only in meaningless explanations.
My desire to learn finally led me outside the confines of the AIDS establishment and into a body of scientific, medical and epidemiological data that defied everything I had been taught about AIDS, and everything that I had been teaching others. The more I read, the more I became convinced that AIDS research had jumped on a bandwagon that was headed in the wrong direction.
When it became clear that the information I had found, however life-affirming, was not welcome among the AIDS organizations I belonged to, I decided to start my own. In 1995, together with a few friends gathered from various support groups and other places along the way, I started Alive & Well to share vital facts about HIV and AIDS unavailable from mainstream venues.
In 1996, while trying to write a simple threefold brochure, the first version of my book “What If Everything You Thought About AIS Was Wrong” emerged.
In the 12 years since receiving my death sentence, I have taken an unexpected journey from frightened victim to AIDS activist to HIV dissident to spokesperson for new views about HIV and AIDS. I have abundant good health and live without pharmaceutical treatments or fear of AIDS.
The most surprising aspect of my story is that it is not at all unusual—I know hundreds of HIV positives that are alive and naturally well many years after receiving their own dire prognoses. Contrary to popular claims, what we have in common is not some unique genetic quality, but the ability to liberate ourselves us from unfounded fears and embrace our natural ability to live in health.
Through Alive & Well and my book, I hope to share vital facts, inspire essential dialogue and give other people who test HIV positive the chance to consider a destiny that differs from the one we are taught to expect.
Thank you for visiting this web site and for your willingness to examine another view of AIDS.