The cure of ginger
Ginger is a well-known home remedy for pregnant women, patients undergoing chemotherapy, and travelers with weak stomachs, who all use the root to curb nausea. But now a new study in The Journal of Pain finds that two types of chemical compounds found in ginger – gingerols and phenols – can be used as an analgesic as well.
To treat muscle pain, 74 healthy adults regularly took 2 g of either cooked or raw ginger, or a placebo each day for 11 days. They all participated in the same series of exercises, which were aimed at creating inflammation and muscle pain in and around the elbow, and were then evaluated by researchers from the department of kinesiology at Georgia College and State University in Milledgeville, Ga.
The researchers found that the raw ginger group reduced their muscle pain by 25% more than the placebo takers 24 hours after intentionally hurting their elbows, while the cooked ginger group dropped their pain levels by 23% compared with the placebo group.
Largely considered a homeopathic treatment, the mainstream medical community has begun to conduct research on why ginger root has been used medicinally for so many centuries. Aside from curbing nausea and reducing inflammation, thus lessening muscle pain, ginger has also been used to prevent ulcers, treat heartburn and aid digestion. Some research even suggests it might reduce cholesterol levels, though so far only in mice.
Broccoli “Boosts” Healthy Gut
Extracts of broccoli and banana may help in fighting stomach problems, research suggests.
Laboratory studies show fibers from the vegetables may boost the body’s natural defenses against stomach infections.
Trials are under way to see if they could be used as a medical food for patients with Crohn’s disease.
Crohn’s disease is an inflammatory bowel disease that causes symptoms such as diarrhea and abdominal pain.
It affects about 1 in 1,000 people, and is thought to be caused by a mixture of environmental and genetic factors.
The condition is common in developed countries, where diets are often low in fiber and high in processed food.
Scientists at the University of Liverpool looked at how roughage from vegetables influenced the passage of harmful bacteria through cells inside the gut.
They found that fibers from the plantain, a type of large banana, and broccoli, were particularly beneficial. But a common stabilizer added to processed foods during the manufacturing process had the opposite effect.
Dr Barry Campbell, from the University of Liverpool, said:
“This research shows that different dietary components can have powerful effects on the movement of bacteria through the bowel.
“We have known for some time the general health benefits of eating plantain and broccoli, which are both high in vitamins and minerals, but until now we have not understood how they can boost the body’s natural defenses against infection common in Crohn’s patients.
“Our work suggests that it might be important for patients with this condition to eat healthily and limit their intake of processed foods.”
The research, published in the journal Gut, and carried out in collaboration with experts in Sweden and Scotland, investigated special cells, called M-cells, which line the gut and ward off invading bacteria.
Work was carried out in laboratory-grown cells and tissue samples from patients undergoing surgery for stomach problems.
Clinical trials are now underway in 76 Crohn’s patients to find out whether a medical food containing plantain fibers could help keep the disease at bay.
“It may be that it makes sense for sufferers of Crohn’s to take supplements of these fibers to help prevent relapse,” said Professor Jon Rhodes of the University of Liverpool.
Commenting on the study, a spokesperson for Crohn’s and Colitis, which represents patients with inflammatory bowel disorders, welcomed further insight into how the gut combats bacteria like E.Coli.
“Knowledge of the M-cell role offers a more detailed explanation as to why a healthy diet can improve the health and well being for people with Crohn’s disease and healthy individuals alike,” she said.
2010 08:31 CDT
* Regulating circulation of blood to the kidneys,
* Modulating the activity of the immune system.
NSAID use can have severe side effects, which are a direct result of COX inhibition.
The documented side effects of chronic NSAID use include:
* Stomach ulcers, (6)
* Intestinal bleeding, (7)
* Kidney failure, (8)
* High blood pressure, (9)
* Aggravation of immune system disorders like asthma, (10) Psoriasis (11) and Colitis. (12)
When you took an NSAID, let’s say for a headache, were you aware that you could just be trading one problem for another?
The search for a safer type of NSAID led to the development of drugs called selective COX inhibitors. As their name suggests, they’re selective in their effect, designed to inhibit only the so-called “bad” COX enzyme, without inhibiting the so-called “good” COX enzyme.
This approach created one of the most highly anticipated drug releases in the history of medicine: Vioxx.
Vioxx was a disaster; it increased the death rate from heart attacks and strokes and was withdrawn from the market.
What the scientists behind Vioxx failed to recognize is that all forms of the COX enzyme are important for health. (13)
So instead of giving us a safer drug therapy, it was like tossing a different type of wrench into the machine.
The idea that there are “bad” enzymes and “good” enzymes or “bad” hormones and “good” hormones is a total misrepresentation of how the body works. But the pharmacology underlying conventional medical treatments is based upon that misrepresentation.
Fortunately there is another way of looking at health and healthcare that addresses the underlying causes of illness: integrated medicine.
The great value of integrated medicine is that it provides alternative strategies for healing, based upon enhancing normal physiological balance instead of merely attempting to suppress the hyperactive biochemistry involved in disease.
One of the powerful strategies of integrated medicine is the therapeutic use of nutrition. Nutritional therapy, when properly used, can achieve results that drugs cannot, because nutrients are essential components of the cellular information network. An excellent example is omega-3 fatty acids.
Thirty years ago I pioneered the therapeutic uses of omega-3 fatty acids in my research, scholarly writing and teaching of medical faculty. Seeking to educate the wider public about the importance of omega-3’s and other dietary fats I made them a cornerstone of my books Superimmunity for Kids and Power Healing.
Omega-3 fatty acids are found in fish, flax seed, walnuts, sea vegetables and leafy greens. The most potent omega-3’s, EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) are used by the cells of your body to make powerful chemicals that help to maintain normal cell function under conditions of stress. (14) The so-called “bad” COX, in fact, converts DHA to substances called resolvins and neuroprotectins, which play a vital role in controlling inflammation (15) and helping brain cells survive injury. (16) This is one reason the inhibition of any of the COX enzymes can be bad for your health.
Knowledge of the benefits of omega-3 fats provides an alternative strategy for controlling inflammation that is both natural and potent. The basic idea is to increase your body’s levels of DHA, the omega-3 fatty acid your body uses to make these beneficial chemicals.
Remarkable results in reducing inflammation can be accomplished by dietary changes and nutritional supplementation. Increase consumption of foods that contain omega-3 fats (mentioned above) and decrease consumption of foods that interfere with the anti-inflammatory effects of omega-3 fats, such meat, and oils, spreads and dressings made from corn, sunflower, soybean, safflower or cottonseed oil, substituting olive oil and flax oil instead. This simple approach had allowed people in research studies with severe rheumatoid arthritis to decrease their use of anti-inflammatory drugs. (17,18)
Putting these principles together, I created an anti-inflammatory dietary program called The Fat Resistance Diet. For free recipes and a one-day meal plan visit www.fatresistancediet.com
A vast amount of scientific research has been published in prestigious medical journals on the therapeutic use of nutrition. Now it is time to put all of that essential knowledge to work.
Making nutrition a cornerstone of everyone’s healthcare has been my longstanding goal and is the first step in real healthcare reform. Moving from a system based on treating symptoms to a system for achieving optimal health will enable healthcare to achieve its true potential.
1) Manag Care Interface. 2005 Oct;18(10):49-52 “Preventing adverse drug reactions in the general population” Pezalla E.
2) JAMA. 2006 Oct 18;296(15):1858-66. “National surveillance of emergency department visits for outpatient adverse drug events.” Budnitz DS, Pollock DA, Weidenbach KN, Mendelsohn AB, Schroeder TJ, Annest JL
3) Pezzalla E., Manag Care Interface. 2005 Oct;18(10):49-52
4) Annals of Internal Medicine, 1997, 127:429-438. “Unnecessary Prescribing of NSAIDs and the Management of NSAID-Related Gastropathy in Medical Practice.” R Tamblyn, L Berkson, WD Jauphinee, D Gayton, R Grad, A Huang, L Isaac, P McLeod, L Snell
5) JAMA 1991; volume 266: pp 2847-2851 “Computerized surveillance of adverse drug events in hospitalized patients.” Lassen DC, Pestotnick SL, Evans RS, Burke JP.
6) Annals of Internal Medicine. 1988; pp 359-363.. “Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug use and death from peptic ulcer in elderly persons.” Griffin MR, Ray WA, Schaffner W
7) Gastroenterology. 1987; 93: 480-489. “NSAID induced intestinal inflammation in humans.” Bjarnasson I, Zanelli G, Smith T, et al.
8) Archives of Internal Medicine. 1992; 986-990. “Acute renal failure and glomerulopathy caused by nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.” Shankel SW, Johnson DC, Clark PS, Shankel TL, O’Neill WM.
9) Archives of Internal Medicine. 1993; 153: 477-484. “A meta-analysis of the effects of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs on blood pressure.” Pope JE, Anderson JJ, Felson DT
10) Clin Chest Med. 1990; 11:163-175. “Drug-induced bronchospasm.” Meeker DP, Wiedemann HP.
11) J Dermatol. 1981; 8: 323-337. “Exacerbation of psoriasis induced by indomethacin.” Katayama H, Kawada A.
12) Annals of Internal Medicine. 1987; 107: 513-516. “Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs activate quiescent inflammatory bowel disease.” Kaufmann HJ, Taubin HL.
13) Cardiovascular & Haematological Disorders-Drug Targets, 2006, 6, 83-98. “Cyclooxygenase-2 Inhibitors: A Painful Lesson.” S Sanghi, EJ MacLaughlin, CW Jewell, S Chaffer, PJ Naus, LE Watson, DE Dosta.
14) Curr Mol Med. 2009;9:565-79. “Role of lipoxins and resolvins as anti-inflammatory and proresolving mediators in colon cancer.” Janakiram NB, Rao CV.
15) Proc Nutr Soc. 2010, 28:1-8 “Fish oil and rheumatoid arthritis: past, present and future.” James M, Proudman S, Cleland L.
16) J Lipid Res. 2009: 50 Suppl:S400-405. “Neuroprotectin D1-mediated anti-inflammatory and survival signaling in stroke, retinal degenerations, and Alzheimer’s disease. Bazan NG.
17) Drugs 2003; 63: 845-53. “The role of fish oils in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.” Cleland et al.
18) Rheumatol Int. 2003; 23: 27-36. “Anti-inflammatory effects of a low arachidonic acid diet and fish oil in patients with rheumatoid arthritis.” Adam et al.
The Telegraph, UK
Bisphenol-A (BPA), known as the “gender bending” chemical because of its connection to male impotence, has now been shown to decrease sperm mobility and quality.
The findings are likely to increase pressure on governments around the world to follow Canada and ban the substance from our shelves.
BPA is used widely to make plastic harder and watertight tin cans.
It is found in most food and drink cans – including tins of infant formula milk – plastic food containers, and the casings of mobile phones, and other electronic goods.
It is also used in baby bottles though this is slowly being phased out.
BPA has been the subject of intense research as it is a known endocrine disrupter which in large quantities interferes with the release of hormones.
Earlier studies have linked it to low sex drive, impotence and DNA damage in sperm.
Now a new five year study claims to have found a link between levels of BPA in the blood and male fertility.
For their study of 514 workers in factories in China, researchers at Kaiser Permanente, a California-based research centre, found that men with higher urine BPA levels were two to four times more at risk of having poor semen quality, including low sperm concentration, low sperm vitality and mobility.
What is more the amount of the BPA in the blood seemed to be inversely proportional to sperm quality.
Even those with less than the national average BPA levels in America were effected, it was claimed.
“Compared with men without detectable urine BPA, those with detectable urine BPA had more than three times the risk of lowered sperm concentration and lower sperm vitality, more than four times the risk of a lower sperm count, and more than twice the risk of lower sperm motility,” said study lead author Dr De-Kun Li.
He claims the research, published in the journal Fertility and Sterility, was the first human study to report an adverse association between BPA and semen quality.
Previous studies found a negative link between BPA and male reproduction in mice and rats
It was also the third study in a series by Dr Li and his colleagues examining BPA’s effect on humans.
The first study, published in November 2009, found that exposure to high levels of BPA in the workplace increases men’s risk of reduced sexual function.
Increasing BPA levels urine are also associated with worsening male sexual function, according to the second study, published in May 2010.
The latest study, funded by the US National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, throws further doubt on the safety of BPA.
“The finding of the adverse BPA effect on semen quality illustrates two points: first, exposure to BPA now has been linked to changes in semen quality, an objective physiological measure,” Dr Li said.
“Second, this association shows BPA potential potency: it could lead to pathological changes of the male reproductive system in addition to the changes of sexual function.
“When you see this kind of association with semen you have to wonder what else BPA has an effect on,” said Dr Li.
As a precautionary principle, he said, “Everybody should avoid BPA as much as you can.”
The researchers noted that BPA may also affect female reproductive systems and have adverse effects on ailments such as cancer or metabolic diseases.
BPA has already been banned in Canada and three US states.
Bottles and cans containing the chemical have been linked to breast cancer, heart disease, obesity, hyperactivity and other disorders.
Most manufacturers of baby bottles have stopped putting it in their products but older stock containing the chemical is still on sale.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) supports its removal and has stated concerns regarding the impact of the chemical on babies and young children.
It can affect disorders associated with metabolism, fertility and neural development.
Paul Jaminet, Ph.D. and Shou-Ching Shih, Ph.D.
Perfect Health Diet
- Human mucus is made of glycoproteins, or compounds made of protein and sugar. Certain probiotic bacteria, such as Bifidobacterium bifidum, are able to digest human mucus.  Thus, the human intestine has evolved to produce “food” for beneficial gut bacteria, assuring that they are maintained even during long fasts.
- Mother’s milk contains special sugars, called human milk oligosaccharides, which specifically feed Bifidobacterium bifidum and assure that this species successfully colonizes the baby’s intestine and wards off infection. 
The absence of this protective barrier of mucus and friendly bacteria makes the intestine extremely vulnerable to infectious disease. Premature babies who are fed formula, not human breast milk, often contract a dangerous intestinal infection, necrotizing enterocolitis. 
In addition to pathogenic bacteria, the gut is confronted by a heavy load of toxins. Bruce Ames and Lois Gold have estimated that the average person eats 5,000 to 10,000 different plant toxins, amassing to 1500 mg per day, plus 2000 mg of burnt toxins generated during cooking. 
Today’s post will focus on how those 1500 mg of natural plant toxins damage the intestinal wall and its mucosal barrier, thereby bringing about infectious bowel diseases.
Cereal Grain Toxicity
Grasses became the staple foods of agriculture because of their rich yields: a single plant may generate tens of thousands of seeds annually.
Yet this prolific seed production has always made grasses attractive to herbivores, and caused seeds to evolve high levels of toxins designed to poison mammalian digestive tracts, thus enabling their seeds to pass through herbivore guts undigested. It is these toxins that make the cereal grains so dangerous to human health.
The effectiveness of grain toxins at sabotaging human digestion is illustrated by the increase in fecal mass they produce:
For every gram of wheat bran eaten, fecal weight increases by 5.7 grams. 
By inhibiting human digestion, wheat toxins dramatically increase the amount of undigested starch reaching the colon. This increased food supply substantially increases the bacterial population – and the presence of starch, which is ordinarily unavailable in the colon, favors the growth of pathogenic species.
Unfortunately wheat toxins do much more than inhibit digestion of food. They also damage the gut itself.
Wheat contains an ingenious cocktail of toxins:
- Gluten, a complex of proteins, inspires on immune response which inflames the intestine in at least 83% of people , and makes the intestine permeable, allowing gut bacteria and their toxins to enter the body.  Gluten triggers anti-wheat antibodies in at least 30% of the population, and auto-antibodies – that is, antibodies that attack human cells – in at least 0.4% of the population.  These unlucky folks suffer celiac disease, which devastates the intestine, as well as autoimmune thyroiditis. 
- Opioid peptides produce effects similar to morphine and heroin. Wheat opioids have been implicated as causes of schizophrenia. 
- Wheat germ agglutinin is a lectin, or protein that binds sugars. At extremely low doses, a few parts per billion, WGA causes gut inflammation and leakiness. At typical dietary doses, WGA causes shedding of the intestinal brush border and shrinkage in the surface area of the intestine.  WGA alone can induce celiac disease in rats. 
By unknown mechanisms, grains can induce vitamin deficiency diseases. Wheat and oats induce rickets  while corn induces pellagra. 
Since as little as 1 milligram of gluten per day can prevent recovery from bowel disease , it is essential that grains be eliminated entirely from the diet.
Legumes also contain an array of toxins which suspend digestion and damage the gut. Some examples:
- Phytohaemagglutinin, a kidney bean lectin, makes the gut leaky; blocks stomach acid production, promoting bacterial overgrowth of the small intestine; overpopulates the gut with immature cells that are easily colonized by E. coli and other pathogens; disturbs the mucus and shortens villi. 
- Alpha-amylase inhibitors in legumes prevent starch digestion and leads to gut bloating and multiplication of pathogenic gut bacteria. 
- Antibodies to soy proteins have been identified in duodenitis, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and coeliac disease, and these diseases are sometimes cured when soy is removed from the diet. 
It should be noted that peanut and soybean allergies are among the most common allergies. This testifies to the significant immune response legume toxins can generate.
Most people are familiar with the evidence linking the omega-6 to omega-3 ratio to cardiovascular disease. Most Americans have an omega-6 to omega-3 ratio in tissue that is ten-fold too high; cultures with a better omega-6 to omega-3 ratio, such as Greenland Inuit and Japanese, have much lower rates of heart disease.
Since the effect of an excessive omega-6 to omega-3 is to greatly increase inflammation while impairing immune function, it’s logical that an elevated ratio would worsen inflammatory bowel disease.
And it does. The EPIC (European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition) study took food diaries from 203,193 people and followed them for four years :
- Being in the upper quartile of intake of omega-6 fatty acids raised the risk of ulcerative colitis by 149%.
- Being in the upper quartile of intake of the omega-3 DHA, which is abundant in salmon and sardines, reduced the risk of ulcerative colitis by 36% – 77% after adjustment for omega-6 intake. (Apparently those who ate more omega-3s also ate more omega-6s.)
Another study found that being in the upper third of DHA intake reduced the risk of ulcerative colitis by about 50%. 
The upshot: anyone with inflammatory bowel diseases should strictly limit omega-6 consumption and strive to eat a pound per week of salmon or sardines.
Fructose is a sugar that is toxic and useless to humans – but it is a rich source of energy to bacteria. Fructose consumption strongly promotes bacterial growth in the intestine and increases levels of bacterial endotoxins in the body. 
Most people think that fiber is indigestible, and that it comes out in their stool. This is not true. Fiber is indigestible to humans, but not to bacteria. Fiber is bacterial food that enables gut bacteria to multiply. Bacteria, not undigested food, make up most of the dry weight of stool. 
Doctors often recommend fiber to bowel disease patients. While not wholly without merit, this advice usually backfires.
There are three problems: helping bacteria feed and multiply may be undesirable; fiber, such as the brans of cereal grains, often contains toxic proteins; and, finally, whole grain fibers and other “roughage” scrape and injure the intestinal wall. Dr. Paul L. McNeil explains that:
When you eat high-fiber foods, they bang up against the cells lining the gastrointestinal tract, rupturing their outer covering. 
That can’t be a good thing.
And it isn’t. In the Diet and Reinfarction Trial (DART), published in 1989, 2,033 British men were divided into a high-fiber group and a control group. The high-fiber group ate whole grains and doubled their grain fiber intake from 9 to 17 grams per day. The result? Deaths in the high fiber group were 22% higher over the course of the study – 9.9% of the control group died versus 12.1% of the high-fiber group. 
Softer soluble fibers from fruits and some vegetables are much more likely to help than wheat bran, but even they may be a good thing only in moderation, or only in a healthy bowel. Fiber feeds pathogenic bacteria as well as probiotic bacteria, and increases the populations of both. When the gut is damaged and leaky, more bacteria mean more bacterial toxins and more pathogens infiltrating the body. A low-fiber diet, leading to reduced bacterial populations in the gut, may be desirable for bowel disease patients.
Yes, it is possible to get too much fiber!
Other Toxic Foods
Nightshade plants and seeds of all species can also contain toxins and may also need to be restricted in people with damaged intestines.
Dairy proteins, especially pasteurized cow casein, are also often problematic for people with damaged intestines.
In general, any foods that commonly produce allergies are likely to give trouble to people with damaged intestines.
All plant proteins are risky, as are dairy and egg proteins. It is possible to minimize risk by:
- Eating clarified butter, but refraining from protein-rich dairy foods.
- Eating cooked egg yolks, but avoiding the protein-rich egg whites.
Summary of Toxic Foods to Eliminate or Avoid
In short, bowel disease patients should eliminate toxic foods from their diet:
- Eliminate all grains except rice. Wheat, oats, and corn, and their products such as wheat flour, cornstarch, bread, and pasta, must be eliminated.
- Eliminate all legumes, especially soy, beans, and peanuts.
- Eliminate omega-6 rich oils, such as soybean oil, safflower oil, corn oil, peanut oil, and canola oil.
- Eliminate fructose sugars, except from fruits and berries. Drink no sugar-containing beverages.
- Minimize fiber to keep down gut bacterial populations and avoid mechanical injuries to the intestinal wall.
- Minimize other potentially toxic protein sources. In general, protein should be obtained from animal and fish meats, not eggs, dairy, or plants. However, fats from dairy and eggs are highly desirable.
When gut health is restored, dairy and fiber may be restored to the diet. However, the major toxic foods – grains, legumes, omega-6-rich oils, and most fructose – should be eliminated for life.
Filling the Gaps in the Diet
For most people, eliminating grains will leave a large gap in the diet. Foods that should be used to fill that gap include:
- Healthful plant foods are the safe starches, such as white rice, taro, sweet potatoes and yams, and fruits and berries.
- Saturated-fat rich oils and fats, like beef tallow, clarified butter, coconut oil, palm oil, cocoa butter (yes, chocolate desserts are healthy!), along with modest quantities of olive oil and lard. Make homemade salad dressings with these oils, rather than buying supermarket dressings made with soybean or canola oil.
- Further balance the omega-6 to omega-3 ratio by eating low-omega-6 meats, such as the red meats (beef and lamb) and seafood, and eating 1 lb per week salmon or sardines for fresh omega-3 fats.
When the small intestine is damaged, fatty foods may be difficult to tolerate, since the enzymes that digest dietary fats and proteins may also digest human cells. In such cases the diet must focus on starchy foods like rice until bowel health is restored. Be sure to supplement with vitamins and minerals in such cases.
Eliminating food toxins may cure bowel diseases and always improves prognosis. Pedro Bastos of The Paleo Diet Update writes:
From the feedback we have received over the years, IBS patients respond dramatically and rapidly to the Paleo Diet. Their experience indicates that milk, grains and legumes seem to be the main culprits in this condition via a number of mechanisms. [The Paleo Diet Update v.4, #18]
Auto-antibodies generated by wheat against the thyroid, pancreas, and gut typically disappear within 3 to 6 months after removal of wheat from the diet. [25, 26] This is probably a reasonable estimate for the time frame in which bowel disease patients can expect significant improvements from the elimination of dietary food toxins.
 Fujimura KE et al. “Role of the gut microbiota in defining human health.” Expert Rev Anti Infect Ther. 2010 Apr;8(4):435-54. [link]
 Ruas-Madiedo P et al. “Mucin degradation by Bifidobacterium strains isolated from the human intestinal microbiota.” Appl Environ Microbiol. 2008 Mar;74(6):1936-40. [link]
 Ames BN, Gold LS. “Paracelsus to parascience: the environmental cancer distraction.” Mutation Research 2000 Jan 17; 447(1):3-13. [link]
 Cummings JH. “The effect of dietary fibre on fecal weight and composition.” Pp 547 – 73 in: Spiller GA, ed. Handbook of dietary fibre in human nutrition. 2nd ed. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press, 1993.
 Bernardo D et al. “Is gliadin really safe for non-coeliac individuals? Production of interleukin 15 in biopsy culture from non-coeliac individuals challenged with gliadin peptides.” Gut 2007 Jun;56(6):889-90. [link]
 Drago S et al. “Gliadin, zonulin and gut permeability: Effects on celiac and non-celiac intestinal mucosa and intestinal cell lines.” Scand J Gastroenterol. 2006 Apr;41(4):408-19. [link]
 Not T et al. “Celiac disease risk in the USA: high prevalence of antiendomysium antibodies in healthy blood donors.” Scand J Gastroenterol. 1998 May;33(5):494-8. [link]
 Sollid LM, Jabri B. “Is celiac disease an autoimmune disorder?” Curr Opin Immunol. 2005 Dec;17(6):595-600. [link]
 Singh MM et al “Wheat gluten as a pathogenic factor in schizophrenia.” Science. 1976 Jan 30;191(4225):401-2. [link]. Dohan FC et al. “1984 Is schizophrenia rare if grain is rare?” Biol Psychiatry. 1984 Mar;19(3):385-99. [link]
 Lorenzsonn V, Olsen WA. “In vivo responses of rat intestinal epithelium to intraluminal dietary lectins.” Gastroenterology. 1982 May;82(5 Pt 1):838-48. [link]
 Sjölander A et al. “Morphological changes of rat small intestine after short-time exposure to concanavalin A or wheat germ agglutinin.” Cell Struct Funct. 1986 Sep;11(3):285-93. [link]
 Mellanby E. (March 15 1919) “An experimental investigation on rickets.” The Lancet 193(4985):407-412.
 Carpenter KJ, Lewin WJ. “A critical review: A reexamination of the composition of diets associated with pellagra.” J Nutr 1985 May;115(5):543 – 552. [link]
 Biagi F et al. “A milligram of gluten a day keeps the mucosal recovery away: a case report.” Nutr Rev. 2004 Sep;62(9):360-3. [link]
 Kordás K et al. “Phytohaemagglutinin inhibits gastric acid but not pepsin secretion in conscious rats.” J Physiol Paris. 2001 Jan-Dec;95(1-6):309-14. [link]. Pusztai A et al. “Kidney bean lectin-induced Escherichia coli overgrowth in the small intestine is blocked by GNA, a mannose-specific lectin.” J Appl Bacteriol. 1993 Oct;75(4):360-8. [link]. Prykhod’ko O et al. “Precocious gut maturation and immune cell expansion by single dose feeding the lectin phytohaemagglutinin to suckling rats.” Br J Nutr. 2009 Mar;101(5):735-42. [link].
 Pusztai A et al. “Inhibition of starch digestion by alpha-amylase inhibitor reduces the efficiency of utilization of dietary proteins and lipids and retards the growth of rats.” J Nutr. 1995 Jun;125(6):1554-62. [link].
 Haeney MR et al. “Soya protein antibodies in man: their occurrence and possible relevance in coeliac disease.” J Clin Pathol. 1982 Mar; 35(3):319-22. [link].
 IBD in EPIC Study Investigators. “Linoleic acid, a dietary n-6 polyunsaturated fatty acid, and the aetiology of ulcerative colitis: a nested case-control study within a European prospective cohort study.” Gut. 2009 Dec;58(12):1606-11. [link].
 John S et al. “Dietary n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids and the aetiology of ulcerative colitis: a UK prospective cohort study.” Eur J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2010 May;22(5):602-6. [link].
 Bergheim I et al. “Antibiotics protect against fructose-induced hepatic lipid accumulation in mice: role of endotoxin.” J Hepatol. 2008 Jun; 48(6): 983-92. [link].
 Stephen AM et al. “Effect of changing transit time on colonic microbial metabolism in man.” Gut. 1987 May;28(5):601-9. [link].
 Burr ML et al. “Effects of changes in fat, fish, and fibre intakes on death and myocardial reinfarction: diet and reinfarction trial (DART).” Lancet. 1989 Sep 30;2(8666):757-61. [link]. Hat tip Stephan Guyenet.
 Berti I et al. “Usefulness of screening program for celiac disease in autoimmune thyroiditis.” Dig Dis Sci. 2000 Feb;45(2):403-6. [link].
 Mainardi E et al. “Thyroid-related autoantibodies and celiac disease: a role for a gluten-free diet?” J Clin Gastroenterol. 2002 Sep;35(3):245-8. [link].
Thu, 02 Sep 2010 16:15 CDT
Paint chemicals ‘may harm sperm’
Sat, 24 May 2008 16:06 CDT
Men regularly exposed to chemicals found in paint may be more prone to fertility problems, research suggests. Men such as painters and decorators, who work with glycol solvents, are two-and-a-half times more likely to produce fewer “normal” sperm.
The UK study looked at more than 2,000 men attending 14 fertility clinics. However, the Occupational and Environment Medicine study found a wide range of other chemicals had no impact on fertility.
Sperm motility – the amount of movement of individual sperm – is an important factor in overall fertility.
There had been fears that exposure to a wide variety of workplace chemicals might affect a man’s ability to father a child.
The joint research project between the Universities of Manchester and Sheffield looked at two groups of men attending fertility clinics – those with sperm motility problems, and those without them.
The men were questioned about their jobs, lifestyles, and potential exposure to chemicals, revealing a 250% increase in risk of sperm motility problems among those exposed to glycol ethers.
These chemicals are widely used as solvents in water-based paints.
This risk was present even after other lifestyle factors, such as smoking, wearing tight underpants, testicular surgery and manual work, were taken into consideration.
Dr Andy Povey, from the University of Manchester, said: “We know that certain glycol ethers can affect male fertility and the use of these has reduced over the past two decades.
“However, our work suggests they are still a workplace hazard and further work is needed to reduce such exposure.”
However, this was the only chemical linked to fertility problems in men, and Dr Allan Pacey, a fertility specialist from Sheffield University, said that this would ease men’s worries.
“Infertile men are often concerned about whether chemicals they are exposed to in the workplace are harming their fertility.
“Therefore it is reassuring to know that on the whole, the risk seems to be quite low.”
Six Risky Chemicals You’re Carrying in Your Body
Thu, 07 Jan 2010 02:09 CST
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has released its latest assessment of the chemicals people are carrying around in their bodies.
The biomonitoring study is the most comprehensive in the world, measuring 212 chemicals in the blood and urine of 8,000 Americans.
The CDC highlighted a few chemicals because they are both widespread — found in all or most people tested — and potentially harmful.
Here’s a look at what they are and how you can try to avoid them:
Polybrominated diphenyl ethers
Better known as “flame retardants”, PBDEs are used widely in all sorts of goods to reduce fire risk. They also accumulate in human fat, and some studies suggest they may harm your liver and kidneys as well as your neurological system. Some states have restricted the use of certain PBDEs, but short of such bans, avoiding them is difficult because the chemicals are integrated into so many products.
BPA, which is found in many plastics, in the lining of cans, and even coating many sales receipts, was found in more than 90 percent of Americans tested. The health concerns about BPA are many and growing. While BPA-free products are available, it can be difficult to find them unless you do research ahead of time.
PFOA and other perfluorinated chemicals are used to create heat-resistant and non-stick coatings on cookware, as well as grease-resistant food packaging and stain-resistant clothing. Studies have linked these chemicals to a range of health problems, including infertility in women, and to developmental and reproductive problems in lab animals. Avoiding products that contain them is a first step towards avoiding them.
Formed when carbohydrates are cooked at high temperatures, acrylamide and its metabolites are extremely common in Americans. High-level exposure has caused cancer and neurological problems in lab animals and workers, respectively. Avoiding it in food comes down to food choice, storage and preparation.
The main source of mercury — a potent neurotoxin that can lead to permanent brain damage if young children or fetuses are exposed — continues to be contaminated fish. I do not recommend eating most fish for this reason.
Comment: Remember that also Amalgam used in dentistry contains about 54% of Mercury (according to Wikipedia)! For more info see the following videos: Video: Smoking Teeth = Poison Gas (Mercury)
This gasoline additive has been phased out of use in the U.S. in favor of ethanol, but it still can be detected widely in American’s bodies; it has contaminated many drinking water supplies. Studies have linked it to a variety of potential problems, including neurological and reproductive damage.
The Daily Green December 15, 2009
Dr. Mercola’s Comments:
As this article points out, the CDC’s chemical testing program, which is considered the most comprehensive study in the world, applies to less than one percent of the 6,000 chemicals people in the U.S. are regularly exposed to.
This means over 99 percent of the chemicals you routinely encounter are totally untested. And if a typical American comes in regular contact with 6,000 chemicals, how many more potentially toxic substances are you exposed to less frequently?
Rather than feeling overwhelmed by the thought of all the potential toxins you and your family come in contact with, I encourage you instead to focus on simple steps you can take reduce your risk of chemical exposure.
Rome wasn’t built in a day, after all, and it’s much more productive and less stressful to work gradually but steadily toward your goal of healthier living.
Are You Sleeping With the Enemy?
Avoiding flame-retardant products containing PBDEs is difficult in the U.S. since they are found in common household items like upholstery and television and computer housings. Fortunately, several states now ban the use of PBDEs, so there is some progress toward reducing exposure.
Another source of PBDEs could be your mattress, and since you can spend up to a third of your life in bed, this is a significant health concern.
Shopping for a safe mattress is not an easy task. Mattress manufacturers are not required to label or disclose which chemicals their mattresses contain. Look for 100 percent wool, toxin-free mattresses.
Another option to consider is a mattress that uses a Kevlar instead of chemicals for fire-proofing. These are available in most big stores, and will help you to avoid some of the toxicity.
Choose Glass, Not Plastic
Switching from plastic to glass containers will go a long way toward reducing your family’s exposure to bisphenol A (BPA). Suggestions:
- Use only glass bottles and dishes for your entire family.
- Buy natural fabric toys instead of plastic.
- Store food and beverages in glass containers only. As you phase out your plastics, get rid of those marked with a recycling label No. 7 first, as they are most likely to contain BPA.
- Use your microwave sparingly and don’t heat food or drinks in a plastic container or covered with plastic wrap.
- If you use plastic kitchenware make sure it’s in good shape. Don’t put it in the dishwasher or wash with harsh detergents which can be absorbed into the plastic and then transferred to your food.
- Don’t buy bottled water. Filter your own using a reverse osmosis system.
Are You Still Using Non-Stick Cookware?
Quite likely you are, since about 70 percent of cookware sold in the U.S. contains a non-stick coating.
Like so many products developed for the sake of convenience without concern for human health, Teflon coated cookware has proved to be a primary source of dangerous perfluorinated chemicals (PFOAs).
Teflon pans quickly reach temperatures which cause the non-stick coating to begin breaking down, releasing toxins into the air in your kitchen.
When your Teflon pot or pan reaches 680o F (which takes about three to five minutes of heating), at least six toxic gases are released. At 1000o F, the coatings on your cookware break down into a chemical warfare agent known as PFIB. So much for that healthy home cooked meal.
I highly recommend you throw away this type of cookware immediately and replace it with either ceramic or glass. My personal choice is ceramic cookware, because it’s very durable and easy to clean, and there’s absolutely no risk of exposure to harmful chemicals.
Eliminate Fries and Chips from Your Diet Once and For All
Regular readers of my newsletter are well aware of my stand on French fries and snack chips.
The dangers of fries and chips are typical of highly processed foods as a group.
You and your family should eat for your nutritional type with a focus on minimally processed foods.
A good starting point if you’re still eating too much fast, junk or processed food is to immediately eliminate those items from your diet which have absolutely no nutritional value whatsoever, like those fries, chips, doughnuts, and soda.
Roughly 75 percent of all human exposure to mercury comes from eating fish, U.S. officials say, with 40 percent of that from contaminated Pacific tuna alone.
Tuna isn’t the only fish with a problem, however. The sad fact is most of the U.S. fish supply contains harmful levels of mercury.
Unfortunately, I can’t recommend eating fish due to mercury contamination levels. The only safe fish I have found is Vital Choice wild red salmon. You might also consider eating smaller fish like anchovies or sardines, as their size cuts down the risk of contamination.
Since for good health your body requires the omega-3 fats found in fish, I do recommend you supplement your diet with a high-quality krill oil or fish oil.
Another primary source of mercury poisoning is dental fillings. Proceed cautiously if you’re thinking about having your amalgam fillings removed.
And then there are vaccines. Thimerosal, which contains almost 50 percent ethyl mercury by weight, should have been removed from vaccines over six years ago, when the EPA first mandated its removal. But due to mislabeling and other problems its presence is still being felt. So much so that even package inserts, which are required to detail exactly what is in a vaccine, may not even be accurate. This means your physician may not even be aware that a toxic additive such as thimerosal is in the vaccine.
For this reason, before making a decision on vaccinating your children, I strongly urge you to do your family a major favor by reviewing the many side effects and risks involved in being subjected to this potentially life-threatening preservative.
If you’re concerned about the mercury toxicity level in your body, read here to learn about my comprehensive mercury detoxification program.
When it comes to the potentially hazardous chemicals you and your family are exposed to as you go about your daily lives, I again want to stress the importance of positive and gradual steps toward decreasing your risk through healthy lifestyle choices.
A great resource for your journey and one I highly recommend is Dr. Doris Rapp’s book, Our Toxic World: A Wake Up Call. This book is full of information and practical suggestions you can begin putting to use right away.
Start your Detox Yet? Chemicals May Reduce Fertility….
Thu, 29 Jan 2009 05:29 CST
Chemicals widely used in food packaging, pesticides and clothing may reduce a woman’s fertility, experts have said.
Exposure to perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs) could influence how long it takes for a woman to fall pregnant, they said.
Researchers led by a team from the University of California in Los Angeles analysed data from 1,240 women in Denmark recruited between 1996 and 2002 who went on to give birth. They measured the level of two of the most common PFCs, perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS), in the women’s blood. They then asked the women how long it had taken them to conceive.
The average age of the women was 31, and 15% of the group were over 35, which is the age at which fertility is known to decline more rapidly. The study results were adjusted to take into account their age, lifestyle and socio-economic status.
The researchers found that women who needed infertility treatment or took longer than 12 months to conceive had higher levels of PFOS and PFOA than those who conceived in under six months. They estimated that women with the highest exposure to PFOS were in fact 70% to 134% more likely to suffer infertility (defined as taking longer than 12 months or requiring infertility treatment) than women with the lowest exposure.
Meanwhile, those with the highest levels of PFOA were 60% to 154% more likely to be infertile than women with the lowest exposure.
The researchers said no conclusions could be drawn from the study on how the chemicals may affect women who fail to get pregnant at all. But they said the effect of the chemicals on a man’s sperm quality could impact on ability to conceive “since the couples may share similar aspects of lifestyle and around 99% of subjects in this cohort had a spouse or partner”. However, they called for further studies to investigate the impact on sperm.
PFOA is widely used in manufacturing and industry, including the production of non-stick cookware, heat-resistant materials and those used in waterproof clothing. PFOS has been used to treat surfaces and upholstery, some insecticides and fire extinguisher foam, although its use has been steadily falling since the late 1990s.
The study was published online in the journal Human Reproduction.
Tony Rutherford, chair of the British Fertility Society, said the results were interesting. “This research shows a tenuous link in the delay to conception in women with the highest levels of two commonly used perfluorinated chemicals,” he added. “This is an important finding and certainly warrants further detailed research, particularly in those trying for a family. This study emphasises the importance of remaining vigilant to potential environmental factors that may impact on fertility.”
Comment: This is a major health issue we love to discuss. The conservative take by the authors helps them retain their funding. If you want a really interesting look at how chemicals in our food, water and environment affect our health, Detoxify or Die by Sherry Rogers is available here.
Toxic chemicals found in common scented laundry products, air fresheners
A University of Washington study of top-selling laundry products and air fresheners found the products emitted dozens of different chemicals. All six products tested gave off at least one chemical regulated as toxic or hazardous under federal laws, but none of those chemicals was listed on the product labels.
“I first got interested in this topic because people were telling me that the air fresheners in public restrooms and the scent from laundry products vented outdoors were making them sick,” said Anne Steinemann, a UW professor of civil and environmental engineering and of public affairs. “And I wanted to know, ‘What’s in these products that is causing these effects?'”
She analyzed the products to discover the chemicals’ identity.
“I was surprised by both the number and the potential toxicity of the chemicals that were found,” Steinemann said. Chemicals included acetone, the active ingredient in paint thinner and nail-polish remover; limonene, a molecule with a citrus scent; and acetaldehyde, chloromethane and 1,4-dioxane.
“Nearly 100 volatile organic compounds were emitted from these six products, and none were listed on any product label. Plus, five of the six products emitted one or more carcinogenic ‘hazardous air pollutants,’ which are considered by the Environmental Protection Agency to have no safe exposure level,” Steinemann said.
Her study was published online today by the journal Environmental Impact Assessment Review. Steinemann chose not to disclose the brand names of the six products she tested. In a larger study of 25 cleaners, personal care products, air fresheners and laundry products, now submitted for publication, she found that many other brands contained similar chemicals.
Because manufacturers of consumer products are not required to disclose the ingredients, Steinemann analyzed the products to discover their contents. She studied three common air fresheners (a solid deodorizer disk, a liquid spray and a plug-in oil) and three laundry products (a dryer sheet, fabric softener and a detergent), selecting a top seller in each category. She bought household items at a grocery store and asked companies for samples of industrial products.
In the laboratory, each product was placed in an isolated space at room temperature and the surrounding air was analyzed for volatile organic compounds, small molecules that evaporate from the product’s surface into the air.
Results showed 58 different volatile organic compounds above a concentration of 300 micrograms per cubic meter, many of which were present in more than one of the six products. For instance, a plug-in air freshener contained more than 20 different volatile organic compounds. Of these, seven are regulated as toxic or hazardous under federal laws. The product label lists no ingredients, and information on the Material Safety Data Sheet, required for workplace handling of chemicals, lists the contents as “mixture of perfume oils.”
This study does not address links between exposure to chemicals and health effects. However, two national surveys published by Steinemann and a colleague in 2004 and 2005 found that about 20 percent of the population reported adverse health effects from air fresheners, and about 10 percent complained of adverse effects from laundry products vented to the outdoors. Among asthmatics such complaints were roughly twice as common.
Manufacturers are not required to list the ingredients used in laundry products and air fresheners. Personal-care products and cleaners often contain similar fragrance chemicals, Steinemann said. And although cosmetics are required by the Food and Drug Administration to list ingredients, no law requires products of any kind to list chemicals used in fragrances.
“Fragrance chemicals are of particular interest because of the potential for involuntary exposure, or second-hand scents,” Steinemann said.
“Be careful if you buy products with fragrance, because you really don’t know what’s in them,” she added. “I’d like to see better labeling. In the meantime, I’d recommend that instead of air fresheners people use ventilation, and with laundry products, choose fragrance-free versions.”
The European Union recently enacted legislation requiring products to list 26 fragrance chemicals when they are present above a certain concentration in cosmetic products and detergents. No similar laws exist in the United States.
“I hope this study will raise public awareness, and reduce exposures to potentially hazardous chemicals,” said Steinemann.
Gatorade pulls ingredient linked to flame retardant
January 27, 2013.
Saved under Health and Welfare
The LA Times
By Tiffany HsuJanuary 25, 2013, 12:41 p.m.
Brominated vegetable oil, a synthetic chemical that has been patented in Europe as a flame retardant, will no longer double as an ingredient in Gatorade sports drinks.
Molly Carter, a spokeswoman for Gatorade owner PepsiCo Inc., said the company has been considering the move for more than a year, working on a way to take out the ingredient without affecting the flavor of the drink.
A recent petition on Change.org to drop the chemical – which has more than 200,000 supporters – did not inspire the decision, Carter said, though she acknowledged that consumer feedback was the main impetus.
In the petition, posted by Sarah Kavanagh of Hattiesburg, Miss., “BVO” is described as banned in Japan and the European Union.
The effort quotes a Scientific American article suggesting that “BVO could be building up in human tissues” and that studies on mice have shown “reproductive and behavioral problems” linked to large doses of the chemical.
The reformulated Gatorade flavors “will start rolling out in the next few months,” Carter said.
There’s no hard date for the launch because “we’re not recalling Gatorade,” she said. “We don’t think our products are unsafe. We don’t think there are health or safety risks.”
The BVO ingredient was used as a flavor emulsifier, helping to distribute Gatorade’s coloring throughout the bottle, Carter said. Now, the company is swapping in another emulsifier with an intimidating name: sucrose acetate isobutyrate.
Read More : LA times
One world scam
Top 11 biggest lies of mainstream nutrition
Mon, 11 Feb 2013 16:59 CST
There is a lot of misinformation circling around in mainstream nutrition.
I have listed the worst examples in this article, but unfortunately this is just the tip of the iceberg.
Here are the top 11 biggest lies, myths and misconceptions of mainstream nutrition.
1. Eggs Are Unhealthy
There’s one thing that nutrition professionals have had remarkable success with… and that is demonizing incredibly healthy foods.
The worst example of that is eggs, which happen to contain a large amount of cholesterol and were therefore considered to increase the risk of heart disease.
But recently it has been proven that the cholesterol in the diet doesn’t really raise the cholesterol in blood. In fact, eggs primarily raise the “good” cholesterol and are NOT associated with increased risk of heart disease (1, 2).
Bottom Line: Eggs do not cause heart disease and are among the most nutritious foods on the planet. Eggs for breakfast can help you lose weight.
2. Saturated Fat is Bad For You
A few decades ago it was decided that the epidemic of heart disease was caused by eating too much fat, in particular saturated fat.
This was based on highly flawed studies and political decisions that have now been proven to be completely wrong.
A massive review article published in 2010 looked at 21 prospective epidemiological studies with a total of 347.747 subjects. Their results: absolutely no association between saturated fat and heart disease (6).
Meat, coconut oil, cheese, butter… there is absolutely no reason to fear these foods.
Bottom Line: Newer studies have proven that saturated fat does not cause heart disease. Natural foods that are high in saturated fat are good for you.
3. Everybody Should be Eating Grains
The idea that humans should be basing their diets on grains has never made sense to me.
The agricultural revolution happened fairly recently in human evolutionary history and our genes haven’t changed that much.
Grains are fairly low in nutrients compared to other real foods like vegetables. They are also rich in a substance called phytic acid which binds essential minerals in the intestine and prevents them from being absorbed (10).
The most common grain in the western diet, by far, is wheat… and wheat can cause a host of health problems, both minor and serious.
Eating gluten can damage the intestinal lining, cause pain, bloating, stool inconsistency and tiredness (14, 15). Gluten consumption has also been associated with schizophrenia and cerebellar ataxia, both serious disorders of the brain (16, 17).
Bottom Line: Grains are relatively low in nutrients compared to other real foods like vegetables. The gluten grains in particular may lead to a variety of health problems.
4. Eating a Lot of Protein is Bad For Your Bones and Kidneys
A high protein diet has been claimed to cause both osteoporosis and kidney disease.
It is true that eating protein increases calcium excretion from the bones in the short term, but the long term studies actually show the opposite effect.
If anything, a high protein diet should be protective against osteoporosis and kidney failure!
Bottom Line: Eating a high protein diet is associated with improved bone health and a lower risk of fracture. High protein also lowers blood pressure and improves diabetes symptoms, which should lower the risk of kidney failure.
5. Low-Fat Foods Are Good For You
Do you know what regular food tastes like when all the fat has been taken out of it?
Well, it tastes like cardboard. No one would want to eat it.
The food manufacturers know this and therefore they add other things to compensate for the lack of fat.
Usually these are sweeteners… sugar, high fructose corn syrup or artificial sweeteners like aspartame.
We’ll get to the sugar in a moment, but I’d like to point out that even though artificial sweeteners don’t have calories, the evidence does NOT suggest that they are better for you than sugar.
In fact, many observational studies show a consistent, highly significant association with various diseases like obesity, metabolic syndrome, diabetes, heart disease, premature delivery and depression (24, 25, 26).
In these low-fat products, healthy natural fats are being replaced with substances that are extremely harmful.
Bottom Line: Low-fat foods are usually highly processed products loaded with sugar, corn syrup or artificial sweeteners. They are extremely unhealthy.
6. You Should Eat Many Small Meals Throughout The Day
The idea that you should eat many small meals throughout the day in order to “keep metabolism high” is a persistent myth that doesn’t make any sense.
It is true that eating raises your metabolism slightly while you’re digesting the meal, but it’s the total amount of food that determines the energy used, NOT the number of meals.
This has actually been put to the test and refuted multiple times. Controlled studies where one group eats many small meals and the other the same amount of food in fewer meals show that there is literally no difference between the two (27, 28).
In fact, one study in obese men revealed that eating 6 meals per day led to less feelings of fullness compared to 3 meals (29).
Not only is eating so often practically useless for most of the people out there, it may even be harmful.
It is not natural for the human body to be constantly in the fed state. In nature, we used to fast from time to time and we didn’t eat nearly as often as we do today.
Several observational studies show a drastically increased risk of colon cancer (4th most common cause of cancer death), numbers going as high as a 90% increase for those who eat 4 meals per day compared to 2 (31, 32, 33).
Bottom Line: There is no evidence that eating many small meals throughout the day is better than fewer, bigger meals. Not eating from time to time is good for you. Increased meal frequency is associated with colon cancer.
7. Carbs Should Be Your Biggest Source of Calories
The mainstream view is that everyone should eat a low-fat diet, with carbs being around 50-60% of total calories.
This sort of diet contains a lot of grains and sugars, with very small amounts of fatty foods like meat and eggs.
This type of diet may work well for some people, especially those who are naturally lean.
But for those who are obese, have the metabolic syndrome or diabetes, this amount of carbohydrates is downright dangerous.
This has actually been studied extensively. A low-fat, high-carb diet has been compared to a low-carb, high-fat diet in multiple randomized controlled trials.
Bottom Line: The low-fat, high-carb diet is a miserable failure and has been proven repeatedly to be vastly inferior to lower-carb, higher-fat diets.
8. High Omega-6 Seed and Vegetable Oils Are Good For You
Polyunsaturated fats are considered healthy because some studies show that they lower your risk of heart disease.
But there are many types of polyunsaturated fats and they are not all the same.
Most importantly, we have both Omega-3 fatty acids and Omega-6 fatty acids.
Omega-3s are anti-inflammatory and lower your risk of many diseases related to inflammation (37). Humans actually need to get Omega-6s and Omega-3s in a certain ratio. If the ratio is too high in favor of Omega-6, it can cause problems (38).
By far the biggest sources of Omega-6 in the modern diet are processed seed and vegetable oils like soybean, corn and sunflower oils.
Throughout evolution, humans never had access to such an abundance of Omega-6 fats. It is unnatural for the human body.
Eat your Omega-3s and consider supplementing with cod fish liver oil, but avoid the industrial seed and vegetable oils.
Bottom Line: Humans need to get Omega-6 and Omega-3 fats in a certain ratio. Eating excess Omega-6 from seed oils raises your risk of disease.
9. Low Carb Diets Are Dangerous
I personally believe low-carb diets to be a potential cure for many of the most common health problems in western nations.
The low-fat diet peddled all around the world is fairly useless against many of these diseases. It simply does not work.
However, low-carb diets (demonized by nutritionists and the media) have repeatedly been shown to lead to much better outcomes.
Every randomized controlled trial on low-carb diets shows that they:
Reduce body fat more than calorie-restricted low-fat diets, even though the low-carb dieters are allowed to eat as much as they want (41, 42).
Lower blood pressure significantly (43, 44).
Lower blood sugar and improve symptoms of diabetes much more than low-fat diets (45, 46, 47, 48).
Increase HDL (the good) cholesterol much more (49, 50).
Lower triglycerides much more than low-fat diets (51, 52, 53).
Change the pattern of LDL (bad) cholesterol from small, dense (very bad) to Large LDL, which is benign (54, 55).
Low carb diets are also easier to stick to, probably because they don’t require you to restrict calories and be hungry all the time. More people in the low-carb groups make it to the end of the studies (56, 57).
Many of the health professionals that are supposed to have our best interest in mind have the audacity to claim that these diets are dangerous, then continue to peddle their failed low-fat dogma that is hurting more people than it helps.
Bottom Line: Low-carb diets are the healthiest, easiest and most effective way to lose weight and reverse metabolic disease. It is a scientific fact.
10. Sugar is Unhealthy Because it Contains “Empty” Calories
It is commonly believed that sugar is bad for you because it contains empty calories.
It’s true, sugar has a lot of calories with no essential nutrients. But that is just the tip of the iceberg.
Sugar, primarily because of its high fructose content, affects metabolism in a way that sets us up for rapid fat gain and metabolic disease.
This is just to name a few. Sugar causes a relentless biochemical drive for humans to eat more and get fat. It is probably the single worst ingredient in the standard western diet.
Bottom Line: The harmful effects of sugar go way beyond empty calories. Sugar wreaks havoc on our metabolism and sets us up for weight gain and many serious diseases.
11. High Fat Foods Will Make You Fat
It seems kind of intuitive that eating fat would make you get fat.
The stuff that is gathering under our skin and making us look soft and puffy is fat. So… eating fat should give our bodies even more of it.
But it isn’t that simple. Despite fat having more calories per gram than carbohydrate or protein, high-fat diets do not make people fat.
As with anything, this depends on the context. A diet that is high in fat AND high in carbs will make you fat, but it’s NOT because of the fat.
Aspartame linked to leukemia and lymphoma: only one diet soda per day significantly increases risks
Wed, 21 Nov 2012 00:00 CST
As few as one diet soda daily may increase the risk for leukemia in men and women, and for multiple myeloma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma in men, according to new results from the longest-ever running study on aspartame as a carcinogen in humans. Importantly, this is the most comprehensive, long-term study ever completed on this topic, so it holds more weight than other past studies which appeared to show no risk. And disturbingly, it may also open the door for further similar findings on other cancers in future studies.
The most thorough study yet on aspartame – Over two million person-years
For this study, researchers prospectively analyzed data from the Nurses’ Health Study and the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study for a 22-year period. A total of 77,218 women and 47,810 men were included in the analysis, for a total of 2,278,396 person-years of data. Apart from sheer size, what makes this study superior to other past studies is the thoroughness with which aspartame intake was assessed. Every two years, participants were given a detailed dietary questionnaire, and their diets were reassessed every four years. Previous studies which found no link to cancer only ever assessed participants’ aspartame intake at one point in time, which could be a major weakness affecting their accuracy.
One diet soda a day increases leukemia, multiple myeloma and non-Hodgkin lymphomas
The combined results of this new study showed that just one 12-fl oz. can (355 ml) of diet soda daily leads to:
– 42 percent higher leukemia risk in men and women (pooled analysis)
– 102 percent higher multiple myeloma risk (in men only)
– 31 percent higher non-Hodgkin lymphoma risk (in men only)
These results were based on multi-variable relative risk models, all in comparison to participants who drank no diet soda. It is unknown why only men drinking higher amounts of diet soda showed increased risk for multiple myeloma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Note that diet soda is the largest dietary source of aspartame (by far) in the U.S. Every year, Americans consume about 5,250 tons of aspartame in total, of which about 86 percent (4,500 tons) is found in diet sodas.
Confirmation of previous high quality research on animals
This new study shows the importance of the quality of research. Most of the past studies showing no link between aspartame and cancer have been criticized for being too short in duration and too inaccurate in assessing long-term aspartame intake. This new study solves both of those issues. The fact that it also shows a positive link to cancer should come as no surprise, because a previous best-in-class research study done on animals (900 rats over their entire natural lifetimes) showed strikingly similar results back in 2006: aspartame significantly increased the risk for lymphomas and leukemia in both males and females. More worrying is the follow on mega-study, which started aspartame exposure of the rats at the fetal stage. Increased lymphoma and leukemia risks were confirmed, and this time the female rats also showed significantly increased breast (mammary) cancer rates. This raises a critical question: will future, high-quality studies uncover links to the other cancers in which aspartame has been implicated (brain, breast, prostate, etc.)?
There is now more reason than ever to completely avoid aspartame in our daily diet. For those who are tempted to go back to sugary sodas as a “healthy” alternative, this study had a surprise finding: men consuming one or more sugar-sweetened sodas daily saw a 66 percent increase in non-Hodgkin lymphoma (even worse than for diet soda). Perhaps the healthiest soda is NO SODA AT ALL.
146 reasons why sugar destroys your health
Nancy Appleton PhD
Mon, 25 Jun 2012 07:23 CDT
Dr. Nancy Appleton has told this story many times, but she is a sugarholic. Years of sneaking sugary snacks only to work it off on the tennis courts led to sickness and allergy as her constant companions. Despite everything the doctors tried she didn’t get better, until…she asked the question, “What am I doing to make myself sick?”
Excerpted from Suicide by Sugar.
1. Sugar can suppress the immune system.
2. Sugar upsets the mineral relationships in the body.
3. Sugar can cause hyperactivity, anxiety, difficulty concentrating, and crankiness in children.
4. Sugar can produce a significant rise in triglycerides.
5. Sugar contributes to the reduction in defense against bacterial infection (infectious diseases).
6. Sugar causes a loss of tissue elasticity and function, the more sugar you eat the more elasticity and function you lose.
7. Sugar reduces high-density lipoproteins.
8. Sugar leads to chromium deficiency.
9. Sugar leads to cancer of the ovaries.
10. Sugar can increase fasting levels of glucose.
11. Sugar causes copper deficiency.
12. Sugar interferes with absorption of calcium and magnesium.
13. Sugar may make eyes more vulnerable to age-related macular degeneration.
14. Sugar raises the level of a neurotransmitters: dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine.
15. Sugar can cause hypoglycemia.
16. Sugar can produce an acidic digestive tract.
17. Sugar can cause a rapid rise of adrenaline levels in children.
18. Sugar malabsorption is frequent in patients with functional bowel disease.
19. Sugar can cause premature aging.
20. Sugar can lead to alcoholism.
21. Sugar can cause tooth decay.
22. Sugar contributes to obesity
23. High intake of sugar increases the risk of Crohn’s disease, and ulcerative colitis.
24. Sugar can cause changes frequently found in person with gastric or duodenal ulcers.
25. Sugar can cause arthritis.
26. Sugar can cause asthma.
27. Sugar greatly assists the uncontrolled growth of Candida Albicans (yeast infections).
28. Sugar can cause gallstones.
29. Sugar can cause heart disease.
30. Sugar can cause appendicitis.
31. Sugar can cause hemorrhoids.
32. Sugar can cause varicose veins.
33. Sugar can elevate glucose and insulin responses in oral contraceptive users.
34. Sugar can lead to periodontal disease.
35. Sugar can contribute to osteoporosis.
36. Sugar contributes to saliva acidity.
37. Sugar can cause a decrease in insulin sensitivity.
38. Sugar can lower the amount of Vitamin E (alpha-Tocopherol) in the blood.
39. Sugar can decrease growth hormone.
40. Sugar can increase cholesterol.
41. Sugar can increase the systolic blood pressure.
42. High sugar intake increases advanced glycation end products (AGEs)(Sugar bound non-enzymatically to protein)
43. Sugar can interfere with the absorption of protein.
44. Sugar causes food allergies.
45. Sugar can contribute to diabetes.
46. Sugar can cause toxemia during pregnancy.
47. Sugar can contribute to eczema in children.
48. Sugar can cause cardiovascular disease.
49. Sugar can impair the structure of DNA
50. Sugar can change the structure of protein.
51. Sugar can make our skin age by changing the structure of collagen.
52. Sugar can cause cataracts.
53. Sugar can cause emphysema.
54. Sugar can cause atherosclerosis.
55. Sugar can promote an elevation of low-density lipoproteins (LDL).
56. High sugar intake can impair the physiological homeostasis of many systems in the body.
57. Sugar lowers the enzymes ability to function.
58. Sugar intake is higher in people with Parkinson’s disease.
59. Sugar can increase the size of the liver by making the liver cells divide.
60. Sugar can increase the amount of liver fat.
61. Sugar can increase kidney size and produce pathological changes in the kidney.
62. Sugar can damage the pancreas.
63. Sugar can increase the body’s fluid retention.
64. Sugar is enemy #1 of the bowel movement.
65. Sugar can cause myopia (nearsightedness).
66. Sugar can compromise the lining of the capillaries.
67. Sugar can make the tendons more brittle.
68. Sugar can cause headaches, including migraine.
69. Sugar plays a role in pancreatic cancer in women.
70. Sugar can adversely affect school children’s grades and cause learning disorders.
71. Sugar can cause depression.
72. Sugar increases the risk of gastric cancer.
73. Sugar and cause dyspepsia (indigestion).
74. Sugar can increase your risk of getting gout.
75. Sugar can increase the levels of glucose in an oral glucose tolerance test over the ingestion of complex carbohydrates.
76. Sugar can increase the insulin responses in humans consuming high-sugar diets compared to low-sugar diets.
77. A diet high in refined sugar reduces learning capacity.
78. Sugar can cause less effective functioning of two blood proteins, albumin, and lipoproteins, which may reduce the body’s ability to handle fat and cholesterol.
79. Sugar can contribute to Alzheimer’s disease.
80. Sugar can cause platelet adhesiveness.
81. Sugar can cause hormonal imbalance; some hormones become under active and others become overactive.
82. Sugar can lead to the formation of kidney stones.
83. Diets high in sugar can cause free radicals and oxidative stress.
84. High sugar diet can lead to biliary tract cancer.
85. High sugar consumption of pregnant adolescents is associated with a twofold-increased risk for delivering a small-for-gestational-age (SGA) infant.
86. High sugar consumption can lead to substantial decrease in gestation duration among adolescents.
87. Sugar slows food’s travel time through the gastrointestinal tract.
88. Sugar increases the concentration of bile acids in stools and bacterial enzymes in the colon. This can modify bile to produce cancer-causing compounds and colon cancer.
89. Sugar increases estradiol (the most potent form of naturally occurring estrogen) in men.
90. Sugar combines with and destroys phosphatase, an enzyme, which makes the process of digestion more difficult.
91. Sugar can be a risk factor of gallbladder cancer.
92. Sugar is an addictive substance.
93. Sugar can be intoxicating, similar to alcohol.
94. Sugar can exacerbate PMS.
95. Sugar given to premature babies can affect the amount of carbon dioxide they produce.
96. Decrease in sugar intake can increase emotional stability.
97. The rapid absorption of sugar promotes excessive food intake in obese subjects.
98. Sugar can worsen the symptoms of children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
99. Sugar adversely affects urinary electrolyte composition.
100. Sugar can slow down the ability of the adrenal glands to function.
101. I.Vs (intravenous feedings) of sugar water can cut off oxygen to the brain.
102. High sucrose intake could be an important risk factor in lung cancer.
103. Sugar increases the risk of polio.
104. High sugar intake can cause epileptic seizures.
105. Sugar causes high blood pressure in obese people.
106. In Intensive Care Units, limiting sugar saves lives.
107. Sugar may induce cell death.
108. Sugar can increase the amount of food that you eat.
109. In juvenile rehabilitation camps, when children were put on a low sugar diet, there was a 44% drop in antisocial behavior.
110. Sugar can lead to prostrate cancer.
111. Sugar dehydrates newborns.
112. Sugar can cause low birth weight babies.
113. Greater consumption of refined sugar is associated with a worse outcome of schizophrenia
114. Sugar can raise homocysteine levels in the blood stream.
115. Sweet food items increase the risk of breast cancer.
116. Sugar is a risk factor in cancer of the small intestine.
117. Sugar may cause laryngeal cancer.
118. Sugar induces salt and water retention.
119. Sugar may contribute to mild memory loss.
120. The more sodas a 10 year old child consumes, the less milk.
121. Sugar can increase the total amount of food consumed.
122. Exposing a newborn to sugar results in a heightened preference for sucrose relative to water at 6 months and 2 years of age.
123. Sugar causes constipation.
124. Sugar causes varicose veins.
125. Sugar can cause brain decay in prediabetic and diabetic women.
126. Sugar can increase the risk of stomach cancer.
127. Sugar can cause metabolic syndrome.
128. Sugar ingestion by pregnant women increases neural tube defects in embryos.
129. Sugar can be a factor in asthma.
130. The higher the sugar consumption the more chances of getting irritable bowel syndrome.
131. Sugar can affect the brain’s ability to deal with rewards and consequences.
132. Sugar can cause cancer of the rectum.
133. Sugar can cause endometrial cancer.
134. Sugar can cause renal (kidney) cell carcinoma.
135. Sugar can cause liver tumors.
136. Sugar can increase inflammatory markers in the blood stream of overweight people.
137. Sugar can lower Vitamin E levels in the blood stream.
138. Sugar can increase your appetite for all food.
139. Sugar plays a role in the etiology and the continuation of acne.
140. Too much sugar can kill your sex life.
141. Sugar saps school performance in children.
142. Sugar can cause fatigue, moodiness, nervousness and depression.
143. Sugar is common choice of obese individuals.
144. A linear decrease in the intake of many essential nutrients is associated with increasing total sugar intake.
145. High fructose consumption has been linked to liver disease.
146. Sugar adds to the risk of bladder cancer.
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5 artificial chemicals that are making you fat (found in your home)
There are many artificial chemicals believed to contribute to obesity. These chemicals are termed “obesogens” – foreign chemical compounds that can disrupt the normal function of the body and cause fat gain (1). They are found in various food containers, baby bottles, toys, plastics, cookware and cosmetics. Many of them are classified as Endocrine Disruptors – chemicals that can interfere with your hormones (2). These chemicals exert their effects by activating estrogen receptors, which can cause harmful effects in both females and males.
The estrogen receptor is “promiscuous” – meaning that it will bind to anything that looks even remotely like an estrogen (3). These substances have not only been linked to obesity, but also to birth defects, premature puberty in girls, demasculinization in men, breast cancer, and various other disorders.
Unfortunately, many of these effects happen in the womb. Pregnant women are exposed to these chemicals, which changes the epigenetic “programming” of the fetus, the child then being at a much greater risk of becoming obese later in life (4).
There are now 20 chemicals that have been identified as obesogens and it is beyond the scope of this article to cover all of them. However, I decided to cover those who I think are the most important. Here are 5 of these “obesogenic” chemicals, which are present in your home at this very moment.
1. Bisphenol-A (BPA) – found in baby bottles, plastics and canned foods and associated with obesity and cancer
Bisphenol-A (BPA) is a synthetic compound that is found in many types of products. This includes baby bottles, plastic food and beverage containers, as well as metal food cans. It has been in commercial use for many decades, but recent studies have shown that it may cause significant harm to both lab animals and humans (5).
BPA is structured in a way that mimics the natural hormone estradiol, a female sex hormone. Inside the body, BPA binds and activates estrogen receptors (6). It appears that the time of greatest sensitivity to BPA is in the womb and 96% of pregnant women in the USA test positive for BPA in their urine (7).
Multiple studies have associated BPA exposure with weight gain and obesity, in both lab animals and humans (8, 9, 10, 11). One study in cell culture discovered that BPA increased both the number of fat cells, as well as the amount of fat that the fat cells produced and held on to (12).
I’d like to point out that not all scientists agree that BPA causes harm. The regulatory authorities in the United States and European Union don’t believe that it causes harm, or at least that it isn’t proven yet (17, 18, 19).
I don’t know about you but I personally don’t have much faith in the regulatory authorities. These are the same people that told us that trans fats were safe and still say that sugar is just empty calories.
Other countries, including Canada and Denmark, find the evidence convincing enough that they’ve set laws to reduce the amount of BPA in consumer products.
I have listed some methods to minimize your exposure to BPA (and the other obesogenic chemicals) at the bottom of the article.
Bottom Line: Bisphenol-A (BPA) has been linked to obesity and many other diseases in humans, although not all scientists agree that it causes harm. It is primarily found in plastics and canned foods.
2. Phthalates – chemicals found in many plastics, associated with abdominal obesity and genital malformations in boys
Phthalates are chemicals that are used to make plastics soft and flexible. They are found in various places, including food containers, toys, beauty products, pharmaceuticals, shower curtains and paint.These chemicals can easily leach out of plastics and contaminate foods, the water supply and even the very air we breathe (20).
A Swedish study found that children can absorb airborne phthalates from plastic floor material through the skin and respiratory tract (21) In a study by the CDC, most Americans tested positive for phthalate metabolites in their urine (22).
Multiple studies in humans have shown that phthalates levels in the body are associated with abdominal obesity, increased waist circumference and insulin resistance, especially in men (26, 27, 28, 29). It appears that males are particularly susceptible. Studies show that phthalate exposure in the womb leads to genital malformations, undescended testes and low testosterone (30, 31, 32, 33, 34). One study found that phthalate metabolites in the blood correlated with type II diabetes (35).
Many government and health authorities have begun taking action against phthalates, with the state of California passing laws that instruct toy manufacturers to stop using phthalates in their products.
Bottom Line: Phthalates are chemicals found in many plastic products. Some studies show a link between phthalate exposure and obesity, type II diabetes and genital malformations in boys.
3. Atrazine – a herbicide in common use in the USA, associated with birth defects, mitochondrial damage and obesity
Atrazine is one of the most widely used herbicides in the United States. It has been banned in Europe for over a decade because of groundwater contamination (35). Atrazine is an endocrine disruptor and several studies show that Atrazine exposure correlates with birth defects in humans (36, 37, 38). In the USA, there is an overlap between the areas that use the most Atrazine and the prevalence of obesity. It has been shown to damage mitochondria in rats, decreasing the metabolic rate and increasing abdominal obesity (39).
Of course, correlation does not equal causation and we’re still a long way off from proving that Atrazine is a significant contributor to obesity in humans.
Bottom Line: Atrazine is a commonly used herbicide. There is some correlation between Atrazine use and the prevalence of obesity. Studies in rats show that Atrazine can damage mitochondria and cause obesity.
4. Organotins – chemicals used as fungicides, linked to weight gain and fatty liver disease in mice
Organotins are a class of artificial chemicals used for various industrial purposes. One of them is called tributyltin (TBT), which is used as a fungicide and applied to boats and ships to prevent growth of marine organisms on the hull. It is also used in wood preservatives and some industrial water systems. Tributyltin is harmful to marine organisms and has been banned by various regulatory authorities (39). Many oceans and lakes are contaminated with tributyltin (40, 41).
Some scientists believe that tributyltin and other organotin compounds can function as endocrine disruptors and contribute to obesity in humans by increasing the number of fat cells (42). In one study, tributyltin was found to induce the proliferation of fat cells and reduce their production of leptin in a test tube (43). In another study in mice, tributyltin exposure for 45 days caused weight gain and fatty liver disease (44).
There is also evidence that exposure to tributyltin in the womb sends signals to multipotent stem cells to become fat cells, which may lead to a significant increase in fat mass over time (45).
Bottom Line: Organotins, including tributyltin, are compounds that have been shown to cause weight gain and fatty liver syndrome in mice. They may signal to stem cells to turn into fat cells.
5. Perfluorooctanoic Acid (PFOA) – a compound found in non-stick cookware, associated with cancer and fat gain
Perfluorooctanoic Acid (PFOA) is a synethetic compound used for various purposes. It is a constituent of non-stick cookware made with Teflon and also found in microwave popcorn (46). PFOA has been found in the blood of more than 98% of the U.S. population (47). It has been associated with various diseases in humans, including thyroid disorders, low birth weight and chronic kidney disease (48, 49, 50, 51). In one study in mice, exposure to PFOAs during development lead to increased insulin, leptin and body weight during mid-life (52).
Whether PFOAs really contribute to obesity in humans remains to be seen.
Bottom Line: Perfluorooctanoic acid is found in non-stick cookware and various other products. It is also associated with various diseases in humans and one mice study shows that prenatal exposure leads to obesity in mid-life.
How to minimize your exposure to endocrine disrupting obesogens
There are many endocrine disrupting chemicals and covering all of them is beyond the scope of this article. It is downright impossible to avoid them completely, because they are literally everywhere. However, there are a few simple things you can do to dramatically reduce your exposure and minimize your risk of later complications. Eat organic produce and naturally raised/fed animals.
- Avoid foods and beverages that have been stored in plastic containers.
- Use stainless steel or quality aluminum water bottles instead of plastic.
- Parents, do NOT feed your babies from plastic bottles. Use glass bottles instead.
- Instead of non-stick cookware, use cast iron, ceramic or stainless steel.
- Use organic, natural cosmetics.
Of course, eating healthy, exercising, getting quality sleep and avoiding stress are still the most important factors when it comes to your health.
Only you can decide whether going through extreme lengths to avoid these chemicals is worth the inconvenience and extra cost.
But if you are a pregnant woman or plan on becoming pregnant, then I think it is crucial that you do your best to avoid being exposed to these chemicals. It could have a dramatic effect on the future health of your baby.
Take home message
It’s important to keep in mind that the effects of these chemicals are far from being proven. Most of the data is observational and based on studies in lab animals.
I do not know whether these chemicals will ever be proven to cause harm, but I am personally not going to wait around for that to happen.
It’s better to be safe than sorry.
8 foods we eat in the U.S. that are banned in other countries
Before It’s News
Thu, 20 Jun 2013 20:11 CDT
This brings a whole new meaning to the phrase “food poisoning.” Original list found in Dr. Jayson Calton and Certified Nutritionist Mira Calton’s new book, Rich Food, Poor Food.
1. Artificial food dye: Makes your food pretty and inhibits nerve-cell development.
Found in: Practically everything we eat: cake mixes, sports drinks, cheese, candy, and even MACARONI AND CHEESE.
Why it’s dangerous: Artificial dyes are made from chemicals derived from PETROLEUM, which is also used to make gasoline, diesel fuel, asphalt and TAR! Artificial dyes have been linked to brain cancer, nerve-cell deterioration, and hyperactivity, just to name a few things.
Where it’s banned: Norway, Finland, Austria, France, and the U.K.
For more information on artificial dyes, visit 100 Days of Real Food.
2. Olestra (or Olean): Lowers calorie counts while causing vitamin depletion and anal leakage.
Found in: Fat-free potato chips, corn chips, and French fries.
Why it’s dangerous: Created by Procter & Gamble as a substitue for cooking oil, Olestra robs your body of its ability to absorb vitamins. Fun side effects include cramps and leaky bowels.
Where it’s banned: The U.K. and Canada.
For more information on Olestra, visit Time magazine’s “50 Worst Inventions.”
3. Brominated vegetable oil: Makes food dye stick to liquid, but also may cause birth defects and major organ damage.
Found in: Sports drinks and citrus-flavored sodas.
Why it’s dangerous: Bromine is a chemical used to stop CARPETS FROM CATCHING ON FIRE, so you can see why drinking it may not be the best idea. BVO is linked to major organ system damage, birth defects, growth problems, schizophrenia, and hearing loss.
Where it’s banned: In over 100 countries.
For more info on BVO, visit Web MD’s “Brominated Vegetable Oil Q&A.”
4. Potassium bromate (or bromated flour): Great for impatient bakers, bad for your kidneys and nervous system.
Found in: Wraps, rolls, bread crumbs, bagel chips, flat breads.
Why it’s dangerous: Derived from the same harmful chemical as brominated vegetable oil, brominated flour is used to decrease baking time and reduce costs. Only problem is, it’s linked to kidney damage, cancer, and nervous system damage.
Where it’s banned: Europe, Canada, and China.
For more information on potassium bromate, visit Live Science‘s “The Truth About Potassium Bromate.”
5. Azodicarbonamide: Bleaches flour, plastic, and induces asthma as an added bonus.
Found in: Breads, frozen dinners, boxed pasta mixes, and packaged baked goods.
Why it’s dangerous: Used to bleach both flour and FOAMED PLASTIC (yoga mats and sneakers soles), azodicarbonamide has been known to induce asthma.
Where it’s banned: Australia, the U.K., and most European countries.
For more information on azodicarbonamide, visit Food-u-cate.
6. BHA & BHT: Waxy preservatives linked to cancer and tumors.
Found in: Cereal, nut mixes, gum, butter, meat, dehydrated potatoes.
Why it’s dangerous: Used to keep food from becoming rancid, BHA and BHT are known to cause cancer in rats. And we’re next!
Where it’s banned: England, Japan, and many other European countries.
For more information on BHT and BHA, visit Berkley Wellness’ “Two Preservatives To Avoid?”
7. Synthetic growth hormones rBGH and rBST: Harm cows and can give humans breast, colon, and prostate cancer.
Found in: Milk and dairy products.
Why it’s dangerous: Growth hormones are bad for cows and people, causing infertility, weakened muscle growth, and a whole array of cancers.
Where it’s banned: Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Japan, and the EU.
For more information on rBGH and rBST, visit the American Cancer Society’s info page.
8. Arsenic: Basically this ish will slowly kill you.
Found in: Poultry.
Why it’s dangerous: Used as chicken feed to make their meat appear pinker and fresher, arsenic is POISON, which will kill you if you ingest enough.
Where it’s banned: The EU.
For more information on arsenic, visit NPR’s “How Trace Amounts Of Arsenic End Up In Grocery Store Meat.”
Food addiction does exist: Sugar-laden junk activates the same region of the brain affected by heroin and cocaine
The Daily Mail, UK
- Some experts believe that it is not appropriate to term food as ‘addictive’ as it is essential to life and not something that people can be weaned off
- But a new study has found that high-sugar snacks activate the nucleus accumbens, an area of the brain that is also stimulated by hard drugs
A study Boston University found that high sugar snacks activated an area of brain called the nucleus accumbens that is also stimulated by class A drugs
Some experts believe that it is not appropriate to term food as ‘addictive’ as it is essential to life and not something that people can be weaned off.
But a new study has found that high sugar snacks activate areas of brain that are also stimulated by hard drugs such as cocaine and heroin.
The research, carried out by the Harvard Medical School, sought to understand why so many people who strongly desire to reach a normal, healthy weight are unable to do so.
Dr Belinda Lennerz, who led the study and reported on it in The Conversation, said a that in theory, weight reduction should be simple – just cutting down on the number of calories consumed should be easy, yet most dieters continue to overeat.
Dr Lennerz and her colleagues wanted to know whether overeating was perpetuated by processed, tasty food, especially those with a high glycaemic index.
Some experts believe likening food to drugs is wrong because eating is essential for life
High glycaemic index foods include refined starches and concentrated sugar and cause a rapid rise and fall in blood sugar after consumption. This triggers hunger and sometimes irritability.
The study involved creating two milkshakes – one with a high, and one with a low glycaemic index.
The milkshakes were otherwise identical, with similar calories and taste.
The drinks were then given to 12 healthy, overweight men on different days and in random order.
Four hours after the high glycaemic index shake, participants were hungrier than those who had consumed the low glycaemic index shake.
Experts also carried out functional MRI imaging on all participants.
The images revealed intense activation of the nucleus accumbens, a critical brain area in the dopaminergic, mesolimbic system that mediates pleasure eating, reward and craving.
Similar activation patterns have been found in people after consumption of addictive substances, such as heroin and cocaine.
Dr Lennerz said that their findings ‘provide qualified support for the possibility of food addiction’.
She added: ‘While food is necessary for life, we eat for reasons beyond our daily energy needs. When overeating becomes a pattern that is hard to break, we say someone is “addicted” to food.’
Finally Dr Lennerz concluded that while more research is needed to examine the concept of food addiction, ‘the fact that a food may affect addiction centres in the brain, independent of calories or pleasure, provides the basis to rethink current dietary recommendations’.
Mon, 25 Nov 2013 16:55 CST
Most of us have never been told that peanuts are treated with cancer-causing pesticides.
Nor have we been told that they are rotated in fields that contain genetically engineered cotton, a controversial crop used in our food supply that is treated with a weed killer linked to cancer and infertility.
We tend to only hear about the peanut allergy when it comes to peanuts in the news, but a deeper look into how we grow peanuts today unearths a lot of questions.
Since when did so many kids suddenly have a peanut allergy? A peanut butter and jelly sandwich hasn’t always been a loaded weapon on a lunchroom table.
From 1997-2002, the incidence of peanut allergy doubled. In the last fifteen years, there has been a 50% increase in the number of children with food allergies. About 1 in 20 U.S. children have food allergies – a 50 percent increase from the late 1990s, according to a recent CDC survey.
But that’s not where it stops.
Children with food allergy are two to four times more likely to have other related conditions such as asthma and other allergies, compared with children without food allergies.
In part, this is why this generation of children has earned the title of “Generation Rx.” They can’t go anywhere without an asthma inhaler or EpiPen, a life saving injection of epinephrine should an allergic reaction occur. In 2012, EpiPen sales were on track to bring in $640 million this year, a 76 percent increase over last year.
And when President Obama shared on CBS News that his daughter has a peanut allergy and asthma, peanut allergies got even more serious, and the online world got fired up, as the President was signing a bipartisan bill that offers a financial incentive to states if schools stockpile epinephrine. Epinephrine, also known by the brand name, EpiPen, is considered the first-line treatment for people with severe allergies.
Online comments flooded in:
As a mother of two kids with severe peanut allergy, I think this is a GREAT idea! We are a military family and have had three addresses in the last few months. Each time my son had to be enrolled in school we need a form signed by our doctor for each the Benedryl and Epipen. Our doc no longer faxes these forms so there IS a waiting period while it goes through the mail!!! I can rest easy that our school has a few on hand until the paperwork gets signed and mailed to me and I can supply our own Rx epipens!!!
Epi-pens do expire but they likely are good for 2-3 years. They are ridiculously expensive. A 250ml bottle of generic epinephrine costs about $3, but an epi-pen containing 0.20ml of the same strength epinephrine costs about $300. probably due to the patent on the auto-injector.
25% of anaphylactic reactions happen in those with no known/diagnosed allergy. This can include food allergies and bee sting allergies. The risks of not administering epinephrine in an emergent situation far outweigh any risks of giving it. For example, anaphylaxis is often confused with severe asthma attacks but epinephrine was the first line treatment for severe asthma attacks for years.
Here’s an idea…lets have the PARENTS of the kid who has allergies send the EpiPens into school vs having the schools pay to stockpile them, when most will not be used and expire anyway. Doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize kids didn’t have all these “allergies” before chemicals were put into our food.
Others called this a “band aid” solution to a real problem: the skyrocketing rates of allergies in our children and how to get to the bottom of what is causing them. Some will talk about peanut oil used in vaccines and others will float the hygiene hypothesis, saying that we are no longer exposed to healthy bacteria because we no longer live on farms. The peanut allergy epidemic began fifteen years ago. We weren’t living on a farm when this took off. If we are going to talk about our overly Purell-ed environment, then we also need to talk about the fact that we are no longer exposed to healthy bacteria because how our food is now processed, treated with chlorine, preservatives, antibiotic, growth hormones and synthietc chemicals before it even hits our dinner plates.
It begs the question: Are we allergic to food? Or to what’s been done to it?
And why all of a sudden do we have so many children with such severe food allergies that it requires the President to essentially write a prescription for kids around the country?
Well, a closer look at the mighty peanut might shed some light.
It’s interesting to note that the peanut is actually a bean. Its shape is similar to a soybean, and it is not a nut at all. It is part of the legume family but different to the soybean and other beans which grow in pods on vines. The peanut has its pod in the ground.
In other words, it’s buried in the soil. It has a soft skin that protects it (not a hard shell like a walnut). Put anything in that soil and you can imagine how it gets absorbed into the peanut. Put genetically engineered seeds in that soil and you get soil that is saturated with a controversial chemical, glyphosate, linked to everything from cancer to infertility.
Peanut crops are often rotated with cotton crops, and now that cotton has been genetically engineered to withstand increasing doses of crop chemicals, it’s anyone’s guess as to just how polluted that soil has become.
But it’s not a guess to the farmers.
According to farmers,
“Peanuts are raised in the part of our country where peanuts are a rotation crop with cotton. Most of the cotton is glyphosate tolerant and receives numerous glyphosate applications per year. Glyphosate severely damages the beneficial microorganisms in the soil. This leads to an increase in the population of opportunistic or bad organisms in the soil. The bad organisms cause an increase in the number of diseases that will adversely effect the peanut crop. This leads to an increased use of insecticides and fungicides on the peanut crop. It is common to see a conventional peanut crop sprayed with some type of pesticide every 8-10 days during the growing season.”
“Negative impact on the body is insidious and manifests slowly over time as inflammation damages cellular systems throughout the body,” the study says. The EPA is conducting a standard registration review of glyphosate and has set a deadline of 2015 for determining if glyphosate use should be limited. The study is among many comments submitted to the agency.
Peanuts tend to be grown in warm climates and as a result things can get pretty humid. Fungus can grow, and this results in increased use of fungicides being applied to non-organic peanut crops.
The fungus itself is not what we need to worry about (though the increasing levels of fungicides raises concern), but there is a poison that is released from the fungus known as “aflatoxin”. This cancer causing agent can attack the liver and is a deadly toxin. Scientists have expressed concern over low-level, long-term exposures to aflatoxin. According to Cornell University, studies have shown a correlation with liver cancer risk.
Because the peanut is also a big target for little pests, peanuts are also one of the crops most heavily routinely saturated with pesticides.
Most of the peanuts consumed in the U.S. are now one of the most pesticide-contaminated snacks we eat. The USDA Pesticide Data Program found 8 pesticides on peanut butter. Piperonyl butoxide was found 26.9% of the time.
According to the National Pesticide Information Center, piperonyl butoxide is considered a possible human carcinogen based on limited evidence of cancer in laboratory animals. Piperonyl Butoxide (PBO), a highly toxic substance that causes a range of short- and long-term effects, including cancer and adverse impacts on liver function and the nervous system, is one of the most commonly used synergists in pesticide products. Synergists are chemicals added to pesticide formulations to enhance the toxicity of the active ingredients.
As it turns out, peanuts and these pesticides aren’t the only ingredients in peanut butter. Conventional peanut butters can contain hydrogenated oils, sugar, salt and other ingredients such as soy protein, corn syrup and stabilizers. Many of these ingredients can be genetically engineered to either produce their own insecticidal toxins or to withstand increasing doses of weed killer. In other words, you’re getting a whole suite of products along with that peanut.
Aflatoxins can be present in either conventional or organic making refrigeration of peanut butter so important, as it slows down the growth of aflatoxins. As you might imagine, all peanut butters must be tested for aflatoxins.
So what’s an eater to do?
Buy organic peanut butter if you eat peanut butter and refrigerate it. Why organic? You will be avoiding that added load of fertilizer, fungicides and pesticides that are applied to conventional peanuts, as well as any high fructose corn syrup and hydrogenated oils (probably full of GMOs or genetically engineered ingredients and genetically engineered soy, which when introduced in the late 1990s resulted in a 50% increase in the number of people with soy allergies).
On top of that, there are no animal testing models for the allergenicity of genetically engineered ingredients, so we are just banking on the promises of the chemical companies that have introduced and patented these ingredients. The FDA has not conducted any independent, long-term, human health studies. They don’t have the resources or access since genetically engineered ingredients are protected as intellectual property under U.S. Patent law.
As a result, grocery store chains like Wegman’s state:
“Testing for GE ingredients is extremely difficult, if not impossible, to do. For example, there is no test available that can reliably determine the source of ingredients that have been highly processed, which is the case for corn syrup, soybean, canola, and corn oil. These are four of the most common ingredients made from GE crops.”
That’s enough to make any parent of a child with food allergies stop in her tracks.
If you head into the grocery store, you can see an expanding line of organic peanut butters. And if you are not peanut allergic, according to a 2002 Harvard School of Public Health study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, consuming one tablespoon of peanut butter five or more times a week can reduce the risk of developing type-2 diabetes by 20%.
The mighty, unpolluted peanut is also a good source of fiber, vitamin E, potassium, folate, zinc and magnesium and contains resveratrol (also found in red wine), flavonoids, and antioxidants, all of whose health benefits are increasingly being proven to help you prevent a wide variety of diseases. Just remember to go organic to avoid that load of chemicals. Arrowhead Mills Organic Peanut Butter claims to be completely aflatoxin-free.
And lastly, it’s also really important for parents of children with peanut allergy to know that the peanut can be cross-reactive with soy. According to the Mayo Clinic and the Asthma and Allergy Resource Center, a person with a peanut allergy can have an allergic reaction after eating a food that contains soy (link to additional information here).
So what’s an American to do?
- If you have or suspect you have a peanut allergy, see a medical professional immediately to determine the best treatment and prevention plan.
- If you are a peanut butter lover, eat a clean peanut. Organic peanut butter does not allow genetically engineered ingredients and synthetic toxic chemicals to be used in its production.
- Refrigerate peanut butter to keep those aflatoxins away.
- Learn about options: almond butter, sunflower nut butter and other options are increasingly available as more and more people are impacted.
- Be compassionate for those that are affected by the peanut allergy. No one would choose to have it. Having a child whose life could depend on an epinephrine shot is not something any parent anywhere would choose. Work together. Parents of peanut allergy kids are probably really scared and that can present in a lot of different ways.
- Learn the signs (a detailed list is below). The landscape of childhood is changing.
Know the Signs of an Allergic Reaction
The Mayo Clinic is a trusted resource for food-allergic information and highlights the following:
The most common food allergy symptoms include:
- Tingling or itching in the mouth
- Hives, itching or eczema
- Swelling of the lips, face, tongue and throat, or other parts of the body
- Wheezing, nasal congestion or trouble breathing
- Abdominal pain, diarrhea, nausea or vomiting
- Dizziness, lightheadedness or fainting
In some people, a food allergy can trigger a severe allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. This can cause life-threatening symptoms, including:
- Constriction and tightening of airways
- A swollen throat or the sensation of a lump in your throat that makes it difficult to breathe
- Shock, with a severe drop in blood pressure
- Rapid pulse
- Dizziness, lightheadedness or loss of consciousness
Emergency treatment is critical for anaphylaxis.
About the author
Don Lotter, Ph.D, The Genetic Engineering of Food and the Failure of Science, published in the 2009 edition of the International Journal of Sociology of Agriculture and Food.