Sunday, March 17, 2013 by: David Gutierrez, staff writer
(NaturalNews) Missing a night of sleep causes you to eat more high-calorie foods the next day, even if you’re already full, according to a study conducted by researchers from Uppsala University and published in the journal Psychoneuroendocrinology.
“Bearing in mind that insufficient sleep is a growing problem in modern society, our results may explain why poor sleep habits can affect people’s risk to gain weight in the long run,” lead author Pleunie Hogenkamp said.
In a prior study, published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, the researchers had found that when young men of normal weight went for a single night without any sleep, they underwent a significant increase in the activity of a brain region associated with increased appetite.
In the new study, the researchers sought to test whether this activity was actually associated with increased eating. 16 men of normal weight were allowed to choose as much food as they wanted from a buffet under four separate conditions. In one condition, they had already eaten breakfast and had slept for about eight hours the prior night. In a second condition, they had gotten enough sleep but had not eaten breakfast. In the third and fourth conditions, they had not slept at all the night before, and either had or had not eaten breakfast. The buffet consisted of seven food items and six snack items.
It was January of this year that the European Food Safety Authority turned heads with their confirmation that neonicotinoids – insecticides derived from chemicals related to nicotine – are a smoking gun in the massive bee die off – also known as Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD).
Multiple around-the-world studies and documentaries have implicated these pesticides in massive bee death since 2006, causing a great debate in the EU. Activists, environmentalists, scientists and even politicians were shocked and dismayed that the two-year ban suggested by the European Commission didn’t pass on Friday.
Major countries like UK and Germany failed to back the ban in the vote, arousing suspicions that they catered to industry interests – manufactures Bayer and Syngenta, and Big Ag groups in denial.
Hungary and Romania led the opposed votes. Outspoken activist group Avaaz (dot org) finds the UK public wants this ban. A poll on Wednesday showed three-quarters of the UK supporting the ban and Avaaz amassed 2.5 million signatures across Europe.
Iain Keith of Avaaz said:
Britain and Germany have caved in to the industry lobby and refused to ban bee-killing pesticides. Today’s vote flies in the face of science and public opinion and maintains the disastrous chemical armageddon on bees, which are critical for the future of our food.
Chemical companies Bayer and Syngenta lead the billion dollar neonicotinoids market. They were relieved and happy about the fall through. John Atkin, Syngenta’s chief operating officer said:
We are pleased member states did not support the EC’s shamefully political proposal. Restricting the use of this vital crop protection technology will do nothing to help improve bee health.
Sunday, March 17, 2013 by: David Gutierrez, staff writer
(NaturalNews) Most U.S. parents can’t tell when their children are overweight or obese, according to a nationally representative survey conducted by researchers from NPR, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), and Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH).
The poll was designed to explore parents’ perceptions and behaviors surrounding obesity and obesity prevention in their children. It found that while 32 percent of all U.S. children are now classified as overweight or obese, only 15 percent of parents surveyed said their children were “a little” or “very” overweight.
“People often have a hard time making the connection between national problems and their own families,” researcher Gillian Steel Fisher said. “Tackling these blind spots can be a difficult, even if necessary, element of public education.”
Researchers polled a nationally representative sample of parents and other caregivers of children aged two to 17. They found that in addition to having trouble telling whether their children were overweight, parents (a term the researchers used to encompass all caregivers) also underestimated children’s risk of lifelong weight problems. Thus, while 69 percent of all adults are overweight (including 36 percent who are obese and six percent who are extremely obese), only 20 percent of parents said they were concerned that their child might become an overweight adult.
Parents’ relative lack of concern might account in part for the prevalence of unhealthy, obesity-promoting behaviors at home. For example, although studies have shown that family meals free of distractions such as television dramatically lower obesityrates, only 46 percent of families followed this recommendation. 24 percent of families ate together while watching television or while someone used a laptop, cell phone or iPod, while another 30 percent did not eat together at all.
I remember a few years ago when I saw an interesting partnership. At the local KFC-Taco Bell was a sign explaining how the restaurant cared about juvenile diabetes. They cared so much that they would donate $1 to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation for every half-gallon size cup of Pepsi they sold. I wasn’t the only one who noticed the irony. But this isn’t the only crazy corporate sponsorship there is. It seems in America, some charities and the corporations who sponsor them make odd bedfellows.There are numerous odd partnerships in the world. Here are a few that stand out:
Habitat for Humanity is an organization that builds homes for people who wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford the luxury of home ownership. Wells Fargo, on the other hand, is the giant bank who likes to foreclose on people who can no longer afford the luxury of home ownership. Like other banking giants, Wells Fargo is about their bottom line, at any cost. And this includes booting people onto the street when they struggle to keep up with a mortgage, a mortgage that could have very well been not appropriate for them to approve in the first place. Case in point: the bank was recently made to pay a $175 million settlement after it was found they were targeting minorities, sending them into subprime loans intentionally.
Feeding America is the leading hunger-relief charity in the United States, operating hundreds of food banks across the country to help feed our neighbors and friends that can’t afford to feed themselves. ConAgra Foods is a giant food producer, one that might just employ the people who have to frequent Feeding America food banks. Starting positions within the company are less than $20,000 annually, and the corporation really doesn’t care too much about the types of foods fed to poor (or any) Americans either, creating highly processed foods and even lobbying to keep French fries and pizza in school lunches.
March 17, 2013
So what exactly is this magic ingredient that will be appearing in a new version of Pepsi, and how is it made? Unfortunately, those questions are hard to answer. Senomyx… refers to them only as ‘enhancers’ or ‘ingredients’… The products work by triggering receptors on the tongue and tricking your taste buds into sensing sweetness — or saltiness or coolness, in the case of the company’s other programs…
So are Senomyx’s covert ingredients safe? That, too, is anyone’s guess… many of its enhancers have ‘been granted’GRAS (Generally Recognized As Safe) status, but all that means is that the company did its own assessment and then concluded everything was fine. We don’t know whether Senomyx did any testing since the company isn’t required to submit anything to the FDA.14
There’s no reason to think that Senomyx’s products will cause harm, but until or unless Pepsi decides to share details about how exactly it’s achieving a 60 percent reduction in sugar while keeping the taste the same, customers will be drinking their ‘scientifically advantaged’ sodas completely in the dark.”
The lack of labeling requirements is particularly troublesome and will probably become an issue in the future. Since these compounds (whatever they are) are used in such minute quantities, they don’t have to be listed on the label. They’ll simply fall under the generic category of artificial and/or natural flavors. What this means is that the product will appear to be much “healthier” than it might otherwise be, were a flavor enhancer not used.
According to a 2010 CBS report,15 Senomyx’s flavor enhancers were already being sold outside the US at that time. For example, Nestle was by 2010 using an MSG flavor enhancer in its Maggi brand soups, sauces, condiments and instant noodles, and Ajinomoto was also using a similar ingredient in products for the Chinese market. This means less of the artificial sweetener is needed to create the same sweet taste as before, but while one could argue that this is a good thing, I suspect we will ultimately learn that this flavor enhancement method has multiple unforeseen adverse consequences — metabolically, and biologically.
Consequences of Food Alteration are More the Rule than the Exception…
There are many reasons why you’re better off choosing natural whole foods in lieu of processed alternatives, but one of the primary ones is that junk foods contain additives that increase your toxic load, which in turn may increase your tendency to develop cancer. As of yet, there is NO medical research to back up the assertion that manipulating your taste buds in the way Senomyx’ products do is safe and healthy in the long term. As an example, I would point to the evidence now available showing that one of the reasons why artificial sweeteners do not work as advertised is because the taste of sweet itself is tied into your metabolic functioning in a way that we still do not fully understand… As a result, artificially sweetened products, oftentimes boasting zero calories, actually result in greater weight gain than sweetened products when used “in the real world.”
Sunday, March 17, 2013 by: Mariel Chance
(NaturalNews) Something sweet is polluting North Carolina waterways. The University of North Carolina at Wilmington conducted a study of the coastal waterways to find all of their samples polluted with sucralose-the main ingredient in one of the country’s most popular artificial sweeteners.
Sucralose, like other artificial sweeteners have shown a surge in popularity due to the “calorie-free” marketing ploy. The reason sucralose can be considered calorie free is because only 10 percent of it is metabolized in the body; the rest comes out in urine and ends up in area waterways.
The research team conducting the North Carolina study has been quick to claim that there is no evidence showing harm to fish or wildlife due to the sucralose pollution. Furthermore, the sweetener has been used in American diets for over 20 years; that means it’s safe, right? Perhaps this needs to be scrutinized further.
Sunday, March 17, 2013 by: Ethan A. Huff, staff writer
(NaturalNews) The debate over whether or not to label genetically-modified organisms (GMOs) has long been settled — the people undeniably and overwhelmingly want to know what is in their food. A new poll released by the Huffington Post and YouGov.com reveals that about 83 percent of all Americans, from all demographic backgrounds, support mandatory GMO labeling, regardless of their own personal views on GMO safety.
The survey is one of the latest in recent years to reveal near-unanimous support for GMO labeling, and it further reinforces the need for full transparency when it comes to food labeling. As it turns out, this fundamental right to know trumps personal opinions about GMO safety in every single demographic category — even people who do not necessarily see anything wrong with GMOs, or who are unsure how they feel about them, believe everyone has a right to know when they are used in food.
Food allergies seem to have been around forever, but there is little denying the fact that they have grown more prevalent over the past few decades. Just a generation ago, it was rare for a child to have a peanut or milk allergy, for instance, and now it seems that all schools are being forced to go peanut-free in order to accommodate all of the allergic children. As a matter of fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say food allergies increased 18% between 1997 and 2007for children 18 years old and younger. So, what’s to blame?Recent research published in the Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology suggests chlorine, found in water and food, may be to blame.
PUBLISHED: 10:33 EST, 15 March 2013 | UPDATED: 10:44 EST, 15 March 2013
A college freshman who’d avoided nuts for over ten years has died after eating half a cookie made with peanut oil.
Cameron Groezinger-Fitzpatrick had some exciting times ahead. He was studying international business, had plans to study abroad in Australia, and was on his way home for spring break.
Since the 19-year-old was 8, he’d known he was allergic to peanuts.
His mother, Robin Fitzpatrick, told ABCnews.com her was asthmatic and discovered in high school he was allergic to all after tossing his inhaler into a pile of acorns.
Traces of the nuts later caused him to have a severe reaction. One he, nonetheless, recovered from with prompt treatment.
Last Friday, Groezinger-Fitzpatrick had been home just two hours in Plymouth, Massachusetts from Bryant University in Rhode Island.
Spring break had just begun and he and a friend were out driving and bought some cookies.
According to Fitzpatrick, her son’s friend was the first to try the cookies and promised Groezinger-Fitzpatrick he tasted no trace of peanuts.
The friend would later recall Groezinger-Fitzpatrick saying, ‘ah, the hell with it, I’m sure it’s fine.’
Minutes later, he was anything but fine.
With him doubled over in pain and turning black and blue, Fitzpatrick scrambled to find son’s Epi-Pen in his still-packed bags as he yelled ‘I can’t breathe!’
Unable to locate it, Fitzpatrick found one of the life-saving epinephrine auto-injectors she still kept at her home.
But her Epi-Pen was expired by two months and, though her son’s condition was quickly deteriorating, emergency operators on the phone told Fitzpatrick not to use the medication.
A doctor would later tell the shell-shocked mother she should have used the expired Epi-Pen, though it may not have worked.
The FastDiet, also known as the 5:2 diet, is based on something called intermittent fasting. This involves eating normally for five days a week and “fasting” for two. On those two fasting days, you eat about a quarter of your typical calorie intake — 500 calories for women and 600 calories for men. The rest of the time you can eat whatever you want.The book, only recently released in the U.S., was written by Dr. Michael Mosley and Mimi Spencer, both of the U.K. They claim this diet will make you lose weight faster than other standard diets — Mosley says he lost 20 pounds within a few weeks of starting the diet.
Although the extreme eating regime has been met with criticism in the health community, Mosley says the evidence to support intermittent fasting is there. The entire first chapter is even devoted to the “science of fasting.”
March 16, 2013
With so many different labels imprinted on egg cartons, it’s not only confusing, but also leaves consumers wondering which eggs to purchase. Certified organic, free-range or cage-free eggs are just a few of the labels that can be found on egg cartons in the dairy section of grocery stores. While an egg is no longer just an egg, navigating through each label to find the healthiest choice is a consumer’s ultimate goal.
In 2011, more than 79 billion table eggs were produced by egg farmers in the U.S., with concentration in the Midwest and additional production in Pennsylvania, California and Texas, according to the Congressional Research Service Report for Congress (CSR). The CSR report also determined that 95 percent of egg production is by conventional cage systems whose concept originated in the 1950s. In this form of production, hens are housed in wire cages, which hold up to 10 egg-laying hens and have “automated feeding, watering and egg collection systems.”
New “enriched cage systems,” developed in Europe in the 1980s, makes up the other 5 percent of production. This form of production houses hens in either “cage-free” or “free-range” systems, such as barns or warehouses, where they roam free and engage in natural behaviors, according to the CSR report.
As way to regulate egg production and guarantee the health and welfare of consumers, the FDA adopted the Egg Products Inspection Act. The adopted measure assures “that eggs and egg products distributed to them and used in products consumed by them are wholesome, otherwise not adulterated, and properly labeled and packaged.” The FDA confirms that labeling of egg cartons is neither false nor misleading as prescribed. If determined otherwise, the product can be withheld and will be conclusive through final determination by way of a hearing.
Friday, March 15, 2013 by: Hesh Goldstein
(NaturalNews) Before commencing with this article please be advised that it appeared on the editorial page of the Honolulu Star Advertiser on March 13,2013, obviously written by an unnamed member of the editorial staff. Bear in mind that it is the first time that this newspaper gave any credence to the labeling of GMOs. After the article I will add one of the few letters of mine that the paper has printed, followed by recommendations.
“The push for better disclosure about food products containing a genetically modified organism has grown more heated and energetic this year, with the introduction of state legislation to require labeling stating that the product contains GMOs.
Unfortunately, the state lacks the power of the federal government to address the problem, so legislation now moving through the state Senate if unlikely to succeed.
The debate has raised awareness of the issue, including the sheer number of unanswered questions about the foods in general. There are many strategies used in engineering a crop by altering its genetic material in a laboratory, each aiming for a specific improvement. The spectrum includes everything from GMO papaya that is resistant to ringspot virus to corn that can tolerate being sprayed with a weed-killer.
The Monsanto Protection Act is revived in the U.S. Senate and urgent help is needed to stop it in its tracks. It was late on Monday night when the biotech lobbyists slipped a biotech rider (Sec. 735) into the Senate Continuing Resolution spending bill which has nothing to do with GM crops.
If this passed, it would be the point of no return for unhindered Monsanto havoc. They would trump federal court power and courts would not be able to use authority to stop sales or planting of any illegal or hazardous genetically modified crops. Strange for biotech giants to want this rider, as the USDA already gives them unheeded approval without safety testing of their crops. Rider (Sec. 735) clinches Monsanto power – if the USDA or court system wants to halt GM crops or revoke approval, they cannot. It’s also an open backdoor to whisk in future approvals.
Senator Tester, joined by Senators Boxer, Gillibrand and Leahy introduced an amendment to strike the dangerous rider from the CR. You can support the Tester amendments while there is still time. Even if the Tester amendment voting is over with – make your opinion known to your Senators. It couldn’t be easier with pre-formatted letters that go directly to your Senators.
Another easy-to-send letter is at Alliance for Natural Health (ANH-USA). They also have a list of phone numbers.
From Food Democracy Now!:
Clearly Monsanto and the biotech industry are getting desperate and want to try an end run around a growing movement of farmers and citizens who are rejecting their products and calling for GMO labeling in an effort to make sure their new GMO crops can evade any serious scientific or regulatory review.
In classic form, the biotech industry has cleverly hidden their toxic plan under the deceptive title of a “Farmer Assurance Provision” (Sec. 73). In truth, the “Monsanto Protection Act” would allow the biotech industry to continue to flout American legal precedence and violate the constitutional separation of powers set forth by our Founding Fathers.
In short, the “Farmer Assurance Provision” is the greatest threat to farmers’ and citizens’ rights that Monsanto and the biotech industry has ever devised and it must be stopped – today!
This current rider is a response to the successful lawsuits that farmers have filed to prevent the sale, distribution and cultivation of GMO sugarbeets and GMO alfalfa, both of which were forced to stop from being planted while the USDA finalized full environment reviews.
Now, the new provision included in the Senate Continuing Resolution spending bill will allow biotech seed and chemical companies to openly skirt even minimal protections of human health and environmental concerns.
We need your help to make sure your Senator demands that Appropriations Chairman Mikulski pulls this dangerous and unconstitutional rider, and support any amendment that would strike the biotech rider from the new Continuing Resolution.
Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund is also alerting of another rider and urging contact to Senators to oppose the Monsanto rider and support of the Tester Amendments:
ANTI-COMPETITIVE RIDER (Section 742) – Livestock & Poultry Impact
The anti-competitive rider (section 742) deals with a law from the 1920s, the Packers and Stockyards Act (“PSA”), which was intended to provide protections against anti-competitive behavior in the livestock and poultry industries. In essence, the PSA was the Sherman Antitrust Act for agriculture. Although the PSA is a good statute, the USDA never properly implemented it. And that failure over the years has allowed large corporations to practice a variety of abusive, unfair, and deceptive practices that undermine the free market.
A coalition of family farmer, independent rancher, and consumer groups fought for a provision in the 2008 Farm Bill directing the USDA to issue implementing regulations under the PSA. And we won. But the fight wasn’t over. The big meatpackers managed to hamstring many of the proposed regulations. And now they want to completely eliminate the few protections we did get, leaving the meatpackers free to continue their abusive practices that hurt farmers.
‘Monsanto Protection Act’ would keep GMO crops in the ground during legal battles, Daily Grist, June 29, 2012
Friday, March 15, 2013 by: Sandeep Godiyal
Friday, March 15, 2013 by: Ethan A. Huff, staff writer
(NaturalNews) There is an entire industry out there that exists solely for the purpose of carefully engineering what can only be described as intentional junk food addiction. Utilizing the latest advancements in food science and marketing, this industry has successfully hooked millions of people into repeatedly buying and consuming processed foods that have little-to-no nutritive value, and that would taste horrible apart from crafty “enhancements” that deliberately trick people’s taste palates into feeling satisfied.
In the first of a two-part series on the science behind food cravings, CBC News journalist Kelly Crowe delves into the dirty secrets of the junk food industry, exposing the various ways that “Big Food,” also known as the processed food industry, generates continual demand and desire for its typically unhealthy products. Taste, texture, mouth feel, and precise chemical composition all play a crucial role in making processed foods feel more desirable and pleasant to eat than many whole and natural foods.
As it turns out, food science is far more advanced and conspiratorial in nature than you probably ever imagined. Billions of dollars are spent every single year crafting artificial foods that target and seek to maximize virtually every aspect of the food-eating experience. This complex process, of course, ensures that consumers not only eat plenty of junk food, but also repeatedly come back for more to their own demise.
“I spent time with the top scientists at the largest companies in this country and it’s amazing how much math and science and regression analysis and energy they put into finding the very perfect amount of salt, sugar and fat in their products that will send us over the moon, and will send their products flying off the shelves and have us by more, eat more and … make more money for them,” explains New York Times(NYT) investigative reporter Michael Moss.
Good thing Mayor Bloomberg has his priorities straight. Just think about it, had he not focused so heavily on banning large sodas he could’ve actually focused on the fact that 1.8 million New York City resident are on food stamps. That’s an incredible 22% of the city’s population. That’s not it either. While Bloomberg spends half his day promoting gun control on the national level and buying off local elections all over the country, homelessness in New York City also just hit a record.
From the New York Post:
The number of New York City residents receiving food stamps more than doubled over the past decade under Mayor Bloomberg, according to data released yesterday.
Now, 1.8 million receive food stamps, a jump from 800,000 in 2002, the Independent Budget Office data show.
The cost of the federally funded food-stamp program in the city skyrocketed to $3.4 billion from $1.28 billion over the past decade.
My only question is, how high will the Dow have to go once Americans start the self-immolations?
Full article here.
Friday, March 15, 2013 by: Jonathan Benson, staff writer
(NaturalNews) After years of dodging the issue, natural grocery chain Whole Foods Market has gone public with plans to require the labeling of all foods sold in its stores that contain genetically-modified organisms (GMOs). The only problem is that the new labeling requirements will not come into effect until 2018, which has already generated quite a bit of controversy as to why this natural and organic leader would wait an additional five years to act on such a pertinent issue.
According to an announcement made on the Whole Foods website, the company is a strong supporter of food labeling transparency, and has been working for years to voluntarily remove GMOs from its 365 Everyday Value line of products. Whole Foods has also been vigilant in supporting the Non-GMO Project, an independent verification system designed to phase out the use of GMOs in foods.
“Our goal at Whole Foods Market is to provide informed consumer choice with regard to genetically engineered ingredients,” explains the company on its website. “Accordingly, we have set a deadline that, by 2018, all products in our U.S. and Canadian stores must be labeled to indicate whether they contain genetically modified organisms (GMOs). Whole Foods Market is the first national grocery chain to set a deadline for full GMO transparency.”
This move by Whole Foods is unprecedented, as it shows just how far we have come as a society towards achieving real food transparency. It also shows that we may truly be on the cusp of reaching critical mass awareness about the presence of GMOs in the food supply — millions of Americans now know about GMOs, and many of them are actively trying to avoid GMOs for the health of their families, which is good news for everyone.
By Charlie DunmorePosted 2013/03/15 at 1:50 pm EDT
BRUSSELS, Mar. 15, 2013 (Reuters) — EU governments failed to agree a ban on three widely used pesticides linked to the decline of honeybees on Friday, but the European Commission could force one through by the summer unless member states agree a compromise.
A sharp fall in bee populations around the world, partly due to a phenomenon known as colony collapse disorder, has fuelled concerns over the impact of widespread use of pesticides, notably the neonicotinoids class.
Syngeta and Bayer, leading global producers of neonicotinoids, say the harmful effects on bees is unproven and that a ban would cost the EU economy billions.
But campaign groups and some scientists accuse governments of caving into pressure from the agribusiness lobby.
Under EU rules, member states now have two months to reach a compromise or the Commission will be free to adopt the proposal.
“Forcing through the ban is one of the options available to us but first we need to reflect politically on the best way to proceed,” said EU health spokesman Frederic Vincent.
The Commission, which could also try to get a majority for a compromise proposal, put forward the restrictions in January after the EU’s food safety watchdog EFSA said neonicotinoids posed an acute risk to honeybee health.
However, the survey found no link between use of the pesticides and the specific problem of colony collapse.
Bees and other insects are crucial in pollinating most crops in Europe but neonicotinoids are used on more than 8 million hectares to boost yields of rapeseed, wheat and other staples.
The proposal would ban neonicotinoids on all crops except winter cereals and plants not attractive to bees, such as sugar beet. It would apply from July 1, 2013, ensuring this spring’s maize sowing is unaffected, with a review after two years.
There truly is no rest for the wicked, and Monsanto is at war once again against health conscious consumers with the latest ‘Monsanto Protection Act‘, managing to sneak wording into the latest Senate legislation that would give them blanket immunity from any USDA action regarding the potential dangers of their genetically modified creations while under review. The USDA would be unable to act against any and all new GMO crops that were suspected to be wreaking havocon either human health or the environment.It’s a legislative weapon that could be passed as early as next week if we don’t gather enough support to force our Senators to eliminate the section. It all started in the late hours of Monday night, when lobbyists working for the Monsanto-fronted biotechnology industry managed to slide a ‘rider’ (through the deceptively worded Farmer Assurance Provision, Sec. 735) into the Senate Continuing Resolution spending bill that is currently on the table of the Senate.
A massive petition to stop what has been labeled as the ‘Monsanto Protection Act’ has been launched by Food Democracy Now, detailing what could come if the legislation is signed into law within the coming days or weeks:
If approved, the Monsanto Protection Act would force the USDA to allow continued planting of any GMO crop under court review, essentially giving backdoor approval for any new genetically engineered crops that could be potentially harmful to human health or the environment.
Watch Decision Delayed on Dangerous Chemical in Drinking Water on PBS. See more from PBS NewsHour.
JEFFREY BROWN: And now to part two of our investigative look at the safety of America’s drinking water.
Science correspondent Miles O’Brien reports on the toxic chemical made famous in the movie “Erin Brockovich,” its potentially harmful effect on human cells, and the agency charged with regulating it.
His report is the result of a partnership with the Center for Public Integrity.
Mar. 14, 2013 — For those with irritable bowel syndrome who wonder if stress aggravates their intestinal disorder, a new University of Michigan Health System study shows it’s not all in their head.
Researchers revealed that while stress does not cause IBS, it does alter brain-gut interactions and induces the intestinal inflammation that often leads to severe or chronic belly pain, loss of appetite and diarrhea.
Stress has a way of suppressing an important component called an inflammasome which is needed to maintain normal gut microbiota, but probiotics reversed the effect in animal models, according to findings published online ahead of print in Gastroenterology.
“The effect of stress could be protected with probiotics which reversed the inhibition of the inflammasome,” says senior study author and gastroenterologist John Y. Kao, M.D., associate professor of internal medicine at the University of Michigan. “This study reveals an important mechanism for explaining why treating IBS patients with probiotics makes sense.”
By Michelle Castillo /
A Clifton, N.J. bakery has agreed to close after the Food and Drug Administration cited them for violating the law by claiming their products had less sugar and fat than they actually did.
Laboratory analysis showed that foods labeled as “sugar free” from The Butterfly Bakery actually had sugar and up to twice as much as the total fat than what was said on the label.
Butterfly Bakery and its president Brenda Isaac are banned from processing and distributing food until they comply with the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act and applicable regulations, according to a news release.
On the Butterfly Bakery’s website, Issac claims, “The Butterfly Bakery is here to make sure you can still live deliciously. We have been in the kitchen cooking up some new dietary restrictive treats that we can’t wait to share. But let’s take the word restrictive and replace it with indulgent… that’s better. You deserve to indulge even if you are watching your sugar, staying away from gluten, counting calories or just making a lifestyle choice to eat healthier.”
People who are diagnosed with breast cancer and then go on to consume a steady diet of high-fat dairy foods increase their chances of dying years earlier than those who consumed low- to nonfat milk products, according to a new study by Kaiser Permanente researchers.
The study, published Thursday in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, is considered the first to look at the differences in high-fat and low-fat dairy intake following a breast cancer diagnosis on long-term survival.
The results don’t suggest that people eliminate dairy from their diet entirely. “But it can’t hurt to alter consumption of higher-fat milk to low-fat or nonfat,” said Candyce Kroenke, staff scientist with the Kaiser Permanente Division of Research in Oakland and lead author of the study.
For the study, researchers looked at the dietary habits of nearly 1,900 women, mostly Northern California Kaiser patients, who were diagnosed with relatively early-stage, invasive breast cancer between 1997 and 2000.
Those who consumed one or more servings per day of high-fat dairy products – such as whole milk and cream, condensed or evaporated milk, ice cream and custards – had a 49 percent increased risk of dying from breast cancer during the 12-year follow-up than those patients who limited their amount of high-fat products, the study found. They also had a 64 percent higher risk of dying from any cause during that period, most often from cardiovascular diseases.
Similar warnings regarding the region’s food safety are appearing up and down the local Gulf Coast media on such stations as WLOX TV in Gulfport, MS. Yet, Fox, CNN, CBS, ABC, NBC, etc., have not run one credible story on the dangers of food toxicity in the Gulf’s food chain. Although it is a different topic, which will be covered in part five in this series, the reader would be correct in assuming that a tightly interwoven, interlocking and overlapping corporate leadership as well as a multitude of common business interests exists between the national media, the oil companies and their Wall Street investors. And in this paradigm, the safety of the food consuming public does not matter.
Voices of Science
Harriet Perry, a research biologist with the University of Southern Mississippi’s Gulf Coast Research Laboratory and Bob Thomas, a biologist at Loyola University in New Orleans have independently discovered that the crab larvae has been infected with both oil and the toxic dispersant, Corexit. These independent discoveries are an ominous sign that the Gulf’s vast food web has been seriously impacted thus imperiling food safety “for years to come.” Thomas further stated that oil and dispersant toxicity has reached the level of where it is “moving up the food chain as opposed to just hanging out in the water.” Thomas further concluded that “something likely will eat those oiled larvae … and then that animal will be eaten by something bigger and so on.”
Scientists at The University of Southern Mississippi and Tulane University have echoed Thomas and Perry’s findings which found oil in the post-larvae of blue crabs entering coastal marshes along the Gulf Coast signaling that oil is entering estuarine food chains. Dr. Perry observed that “I have never seen anything like this.”
Scientists at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab shows oil from the Deepwater Horizon disaster has made its way into the Gulf food chain as well. These particular scientists have found signs of an oil-and-dispersant mix under the shells of tiny blue crab larvae in the Gulf of Mexico which is a clear indication that the unprecedented use of dispersants in the BP oil spill has broken up the oil into toxic droplets so tiny that they have easily entered the food chain.
In the first peer-reviewed challenge to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA’s) safe levels for cancer-causing polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), a new study says they were overestimated in Gulf seafood following the BP oil spill by up to 10,000 times.
Published in the journal Environmental Health Perspective, the study by authors Miriam Rotkin-Ellman and Gina Solomon — both from the National Resources Defense Council — offers evidence that FDA is tolerating too much contamination and is failing to identify risks for pregnant women and children.
“Instead of saying it was safe for everyone to eat, pregnant women and children should have been warned and advised to reduce their Gulf shellfish consumption,” Ellman says.
And now it is likely that 100% of the shrimp in the Gulf are tainted.
Corexit Is the Main Culprit
It is mind boggling that Corexit 9500 and Corexit 9527 would be used in cleaning up the largest environmental danger in the history of the United States. According to the EPA, both forms of Corexit are the most ineffective available agents in treating oil spills and, simultaneously, both Corexit agents also pose the most toxic risk to various aquatic life forms. My fellow Republic Broadcasting Network colleague, Darren Weeks, found evidence from the EPA files that Corexit has the highest toxicity to Menindia fish of all 18 EPA tested dispersants. Just a very small amount of Corexit 9500 is required to kill 50% of fish within four days.
When compared to another EPA approved dispersant, Nokomis 3-F4, Corexit 9500 is 38 times more poisonous to Menindia fish and 17 times more deadly to shrimp. Why not just use Nokomis 3-F4? The answer is simple, Goldman Sachs does not have any financial interests in Nokomis 3-F4. NALCO, the manufacturer of Corexit, was a subsidiary of Goldman Sachs. Also, Goldman Sachs’ and Halliburton’s complicity in the oil spill figures prominently in this investigation and will be detailed in later parts of this series.
The Gulf Crisis Will Never EndThere is no end in sight for this ecological crisis, as new reports of an oil leak in the Gulf were reported in the national media on August 17, 2011. What was not reported were the additional 13 oil sheens spotted off the coast of Louisiana. This development has profound implications leaving scientists to wonder if the crisis will ever end. And, of course, BP quickly denied responsibility. And as of December 13, 2012, the Gulf is still leaking oil, which has profound implications for the long-term safety of the water, food and air.
The holocaust in the Gulf has grown to such proportions that the European Union Times reports that an extremely grave report was prepared for President Medvedev by Russia’s Ministry of Natural Resources in which the report warns that the BP spill will become the worst environmental catastrophe in all of human history and will bring total destruction to the Eastern half of the North American continent.
The Russian report proved prophetic. Oil and Corexit, even when combined, are a liquid base and as a result are subject to the normal hydrological cycle of evaporation and becoming a part of the rain cycle. As early as the 1970s, scientists referred to this process, when it involved pollutants, as toxic rain. And as the Russian report predicted, there are multiple reports of toxic rain, related to the Gulf disaster as far as away Memphis, TN. WREG TV in Memphis reported that local farmers are alarmed at the toxic substances (i.e., Corexit) raining down upon and destroying the local crop base. And while we are speaking about Corexit and oil based toxic rain, wouldn’t this toxic rain be present in the farms and be negatively impacting the grass that cows and other farm animals consume? Don’t cows eat grass which is being laced with this poisonous toxicity? Common Sense would seem to dictate that the beef and dairy grown in the region is tainted and these dangers are being visited upon the rest of the country?
Who Is Watching the Watchers?
By Agence France-Presse
Thursday, March 14, 2013 7:27 EDT
As the first visitors arrive at St. Luke’s church in south London, pushing empty shopping trolleys and carrying plastic bags, it is clear they haven’t come to worship.
Twice a week, this place functions as a food bank serving up physical rather than spiritual sustenance to the increasing numbers of Britain’s poor.
The economic crisis has left many people on the edge, but campaigners warn the situation is going to get worse because of government plans to cut welfare payments in the coming months.
“We are giving away over half a tonne of food every week at the moment, just here in Norwood. Over Christmas we gave away three tonnes in three days,” said Elizabeth Maytom, who runs the Norwood and Brixton food bank at St. Luke’s.
With its shelves stacked high with soup, beans, milk and pasta, most of which has been donated, St. Luke’s is one of 300 food banks run in Britain by Christian charity The Trussell Trust.
More than 100 of these have been launched in the last year alone, feeding more than a quarter of a million people.
“People may have just one meal a day and this means they can have more than just bread — they get vegetables and some fruit just to help provide a more balanced diet,” said Maytom.
Although Britain is one of the richest countries in the world, the boom in food banks reflects the growing number of people struggling to balance their income with increases in rent, fuel and food costs.
Thursday, March 14, 2013 by: Jonathan Landsman
(NaturalNews) Is fat good or bad for you? Does cholesterol cause heart attacks? Can we safely eat salt or not? These questions, plus many more, have stressed out (and confused) millions of people for too long. Sadly, we have been nutritionally misled and forget to ask the most obvious question.
What does a natural (human) diet really look like? Obviously, if we discover the right foods for our body, then we would never worry about obesity or disease – for as long as we live. Diet “experts” should be ignored if they are only talking about restrictive meal plans. Let’s learn how to thrive – not just avoid disease.
By Agence France-Presse
Thursday, March 14, 2013 10:51 EDT
A man in southern Russia took four people hostage for several hours on Thursday in a bizarre abduction where his only demand was a takeaway pizza and a fizzy drink, police said.
A man, apparently armed with a pistol and explosives, burst into a college in the city of Astrakhan located 1,500 kilometres southeast of Moscow, and took four people hostage.
After several hours he released the two female students, a teacher and a security guard unharmed.
“His only demand was a pizza and Sprite,” police spokesman Pyotr Rusanov told AFP, adding that the hostage taker had barricaded himself and his hostages in a classroom.
Police cordoned off the building and met the man’s demands by delivering the requested food and drink, he added.
After the negotiations that lasted several hours, all the hostages were released unharmed, another regional spokeswoman told AFP, adding the hostage taker himself was detained.
The teacher described the assailant as a man aged around 30, Rusanov said.
The teacher said the man had a pistol on him but could not say whether it was real. Regional police said the man also apparently had an explosive device in a box.
—By Tom Philpott
Bisphenol-A (BPA) is an industrial chemical found in everything from food-can linings to cigarette filters to retail receipts. Nationwide testing by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found it in “nearly all” of its subjects. A growing body of research has established BPA as an endocrine-disrupting chemical that does harm at tiny doses. But is BPA no big deal, after all?
That’s the message of a presentation given at the annual American Association for the Advancement of Science last month by Justin Teeguarden, a scientist with the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, a lab that operates under contract with the US Department of Energy. According to a PNNL press release about the presentation, Teeguarden analyzed 150 BPA exposure studies and found that “people’s exposure may be many times too low for BPA to effectively mimic estrogen in the human body.” The study’s funder, the press release adds, was the US Environmental Protection Agency.
Wednesday, March 13, 2013 by: Ethan A. Huff, staff writer
(Natural News) The state of Vermont is poised to become the first in the nation to mandate the labeling of genetically-modified organisms (GMOs), following the recent passage of H.112 by the Vermont House Committee on Agriculture and Forest Products (HCAFP). In an historic eight to three vote, HCAFP voted in favor of the “GMO labeling bill,” which would require producers to put labels on raw agricultural, processed, and packaged food products that contain genetically-modified (GM) ingredients.
The increasing use of GMO in the food supply around the world has led 61 countries to at least require labeling of GMO products so that consumers can make an educated decision for themselves. 15 countries have taken a further step to ban GMO altogether, especially in the wake of scientific testing showing that GMO-fed rats had a 600% increase in death over the control group.
In the United States, a political battle over labeling has been fraught with controversy such as the defeat of Prop 37 in California, even as a few CA counties have been successful banning GMO crops and grassroots efforts have intensified. With $40+ million spent by Monsanto and Big Ag to defeat Prop 37, there clearly is much at stake.
Pennsylvania has now added itself to the list of more than 20 states which are formally rejecting the notion suggested by Monsanto et al. that their science is perfectly sound and consumers must accept whatever latest food incarnation they would like to fill the population with. Can Pennsylvania be the first to finally pass such legislation in the United States?
The United States sadly remains the only industrialized nation that so far has rejected the labeling of GM food. A member of the Pennsylvania state legislature, Daylin Leach, seeks to defend consumers in his state.
Leach has introduced a bill to label GMO food which contains most of the elements of Prop 37. Senate Bill 653 would require labeling of any food ingredient/product containing 9/10ths of one percent GMOs as “GE/GMO” on the label, with some exceptions.
“The people of Pennsylvania should have a choice,” Leach said.
The bill would take effect 18 months after passage. Manufacturers and distributors would have to affix labels on the products.
“This bill is not meant to prevent genetic engineering. It is not limited in anyway. It doesn’t stop anyone from purchasing bigger salmon or allegedly pesticide resistant crops that have been genetically engineered. But some people do not want to consume that. Why can’t they know and make their own decisions?” Leach said. (Source)
You can see video of Senator Leach’s press conference of March 12, 2013 at the link below.
As David Newman, a tracker of paid political influence stated in regards to the massive spending to defeat Prop 37 in California:
I think it’s a David and Goliath story with the companies that manufacture or benefit from genetically engineered food being the Goliath. (Source)
Thursday, March 14, 2013 by: Jon Rappoport
(NaturalNews) Whole Foods has announced that, by 2018, all GMO products sold in their stores will carry GMO labels, so customers know what they’re buying.
Whole Foods has also asserted they are working with their suppliers to find non-GMO raw ingredients, so that current GMO products sold in the stores can become non-GMO.
Whole Foods presents this two-pronged program as their best shot at making intelligent consumers into game changers.
More and more consumers, at Whole Foods, and hopefully other markets that follow suit, will choose non-GMO products; many markets will find and stock non-GMO products; the trend will move America’s buying public away from GMOs in a very significant way.
That’s the best-case scenario.
March 13, 2013
We know that over 20 studies, many of which come from prestigious organizations like Harvard and are published in federal government journals, have told us how sodium fluoride is crushing our IQ. We know that a major head at the National Cancer Institute revealed decades ago that fluoride was causing ‘cancer waves’ in the United States.
So, remind me again, why are we still drinking fluoride in our ‘clean’ tap water around the entire world?
As it turns out, it’s because Harvard and federal government journalists must all be wackjob conspiracy theorists! The peer-reviewed research warning that fluoride can cause permanent damage to unborn babies by affecting their neurological development is all a big conspiracy theory to the mainstream media. The sodium fluoride that is literally assaulting the brain in mega-high doses of 5,000 PPM in ‘prescription fluoride’ toothpaste being dished out by dentists who say their childhood patients are ‘deficient’ in the IQ-destroyer is perfectly safe in their eyes.
When analyzing the Harvard research, published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives, a component of the United States National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, we find quite a few concerning details. The study makes it explicitly clear how damaging sodium fluoride can be, with writers explaining:
“The children in high fluoride areas had significantly lower IQ than those who lived in low fluoride areas.”
The EPA had similar statements, demonstrating how fluoride displays ”evidence of developmental neurotoxicity” and can damage unborn babies. We read:
”Fluoride readily crosses the placenta. Fluoride exposure to the developing brain, which is much more susceptible to injury caused by toxicants than is the mature brain, may possibly lead to damage of a permanent nature.”
Let’s go even further back to the research of Dr. Dean Burke, head scientist at the National Cancer Institute and author of over 250 scientific articles. Back in 1977, the decorated scientist spoke out against fluoride and brought it to the attention of the National Cancer Institute. At that time, Burke found that sodium fluoride was fueling the development of cancer cells and tumor growth — at the average level of 1 PPM. He estimated that around 10,000 had died from the fluoride-induced cancer from that level.
As I detail in the video below, now we see levels as high as 5,000 PPM in toothpaste, 500,000% higher than the water fluoridation levels Burke was examining:
I guess no one told the media that even the United States government called for lower fluoride levels after a mountain of research accumulated regarding these links. They must be conspiracy theorists too.
The fact is that the fluoride debate hits a brick wall thanks to the rhetoric the mainstream media and laughable ‘skeptics’ use by throwing around terms like ‘conspiracy theory’ to discredit any real debate. In fact, it’s actually working against them. Right now we have so many conscious citizens realizing that they don’t want to consume the tainted tap that it’s really considered outlandish in many areas to drink from the tap without at least a fluoride-removing filter of some kind. A lot has changed as more information comes out.
But still, how could we possibly allow this fluoridation to go on for as long as it has? Even if there was only some research indicating an issue, isn’t it enough to begin withdrawing it from the water — or at least enough to conduct more independent research? I think any reasonable person would agree the answer is yes.
It’s time to accelerate this issue from a tired debate of ‘conspiracy’ theory name-calling to a topical issue we can generate a victory for. We’ve done it for GMOs; we’ve done it for high-fructose corn syrup; we’ve done it for BPA. It’s time to blast this information into the stratosphere and demand action.
This post originally appeared at Natural Society
According to a study published Thursday in the journal BMC Medicine, consumption of processed meats — bacon, sausage, hot dogs — in anything beyond extreme moderation may prove a fatal choice.
“Overall, we estimate that 3 percent of premature deaths each year could be prevented if people ate less than 20g processed meat per day,” Professor Sabine Rohrmann of the University of Zurich, who led the European Commission-sponsored research team, said in a press release.
The researchers, who studied almost half a million Europeans between the ages of 35 and 69, determined that processed meat intake had “significant associations” with causes of premature death, including cardiovascular diseases and cancer.
Mar. 12, 2013 — Contaminated water used to dilute pesticides could be responsible for viruses entering the food chain, warn scientists.
Human norovirus (hNoV), also known as the winter vomiting bug, is one of the most common stomach bugs in the world. The virus is highly contagious, causing vomiting and diarrhea, and the number of affected cases is growing. Currently there is no cure; sufferers have to let the virus run its course for a few days.
The consumption of fresh produce is frequently associated with outbreaks of hNoV but it remains difficult to identify where in the supply chain the virus first enters production.
A new study, published in the International Journal of Food Microbiology investigated whether contaminated water used to dilute pesticides could be a source of hNoV. Farmers use various water sources in the production of fresh fruits and vegetables, including well water and different types of surface water such as river water or lake water — sources which have been found to harbour hNoV.
To test this theory, eight different pesticides were analyzed in the study; each was diluted with hNoV contaminated water. The researchers tested whether traces of the virus were present in the samples after the two elements were combined. Results showed that the infectivity of the norovirus was unaffected when added to the pesticide samples. In other words: pesticides did not counteract the effects of the contaminated water.
The authors conclude that the application of pesticides on fresh produce may not only be a chemical hazard, but may in fact also be a microbiological risk factor; both having consequences on public health.
In small Latin American countries, such as Guatemala, Costa Rica and Nicaragua, most farmers do not know the pros and cons of using genetically-modified organisms (GMOs). Many do not even know what GMO means. But Monsanto is changing all of this with an aggressive strategy to expand internationally, threatening many varieties of natural corn seed available throughout this region.
The use of GMOs in our food supply is one of the most important health issues today because of the potential danger they pose to our health, the fact that they require the use and over-use of patented herbicides and pesticides, and they are giving a handful of corporations a global monopoly on seed and food. People around the world are learning about GMOs, and deciding if they will allow the growth of GMO crops on their lands, and demanding that foods containing GMOs are properly labeled.
Despite growing concern and questions from the global public, Monsanto, the largest global GMO seed supplier and agro-chemical company, continues the relentless expansion towards a global seed oligopoly. Monsanto’s first quarter 2013 profits nearly tripled due to the sales of its GMO corn seed in Latin America, as reported by the company.
Monsanto’s deep pockets easily sway government officials in its favor; although, most officials know nothing about GMO and their potential dangers. Unsuspecting farmers are sold on the promise that genetically-engineered crops produce higher yields and repel bugs, although, farmers in North America, where GMO crops have been grown for over 15 years, are questioning the validity of these promises. For example, one of the biggest problems reported in the US has been GM seed resistance developed by bugs, which have evolved to survive harsh GM crops and now require more pesticides than ever. (source)
FRIDAY, March 8 (HealthDay News) — That wad of gum you’re chewing may be more than a breath-freshener — it might also boost your powers of concentration, a small new study suggests.
According to British investigators, prior research has found that the act of chewing gum could boost concentration when doing sight-related memory tasks. Their new study looked at the effects of chewing gum during a hearing-related memory test.
The experiment included 38 people who were split into two groups, each of which performed a 30-minute task that involved listening to a list of numbers from one to nine read aloud in a random order. The participants were scored on how accurately and quickly they were able to detect a sequence of odd-even-odd numbers, such as seven-two-one. One group chewed gum while doing the task.
Overall, participants who chewed gum had quicker reaction times and more accurate results than those who didn’t chew gum. This was especially true toward the end of the task, according to the study, which was published March 8 in the British Journal of Psychology.
“Interestingly, participants who didn’t chew gum performed slightly better at the beginning of the task but were overtaken by the end,” Kate Morgan, of Cardiff University, said in a journal news release. “This suggests that chewing gum helps us focus on tasks that require continuous monitoring over a longer amount of time.”
— Robert Preidt
By: Jason Kane
Watch How Did Processed Food Take Over the American Meal? on PBS. See more from PBS NewsHour.
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