About Larry

My hobby is research. I am been conducting research on a number of subjects for many years. This blog is one result of my research.

The Neem Tree: A Modern Day Medical Miracle?

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By Suresh Nair

neem tree

Mumps Being Spread by and Among Vaccinated People

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By Dr. Mercola

Vaccines are a very lucrative business. Pfizer’s vaccine Prevnar, which targets diseases associated with the pneumococcus bacteria, generated $6.25 billion in revenue last year. And that’s just one vaccine.1

Even ineffective vaccines allow vaccine makers to make a mint. One of the most obvious vaccine failures is the mumps vaccine (part of the measles, mumps, rubella, or MMR).

Again and again, outbreaks among vaccinated populations occur, yet rarely is the truth of the situation addressed, namely the fact that the vaccine has lost its effectiveness and doesn’t work.

In 2010, two virologists filed a federal lawsuit against Merck, their former employer, alleging the vaccine maker engaged in improper testing and data falsification to artificially inflate the efficacy rating of their mumps vaccine.

For details on how they allegedly pulled this off, read Dr. Suzanne Humphries’ excellent summary,2 which explains in layman’s terms how the tests were manipulated.

Just about every media outlet reported the lawsuit, and the hundreds of millions of dollars Merck was said to have defrauded from the U.S. government by selling a vaccine of questionable effectiveness. (You can find an update on the still ongoing lawsuit on Skeptical Raptor’s website.)3

So why are people still surprised when mumps outbreaks occur? And why are the unvaccinated still blamed for most disease outbreaks, even when the affected are mostly vaccinated?

Vaccinated People Are Spreading the Mumps

Most recently, 41 students at Harvard University have come down with mumps, and according to the Public Health department in Cambridge, every single one of those students had been vaccinated.4

Four other campuses in Boston are also starting to see cases, as has two universities in Indiana. About 13 cases have also cropped up in California.

In 2009, more than 1,000 people in New Jersey and New York contracted the disease. At the time, questions arose about the effectiveness of the vaccine as 77 percent of those sickened were vaccinated.

A similar scenario occurred in 2006, when mumps infected more than 6,500 people in the U.S. Most of those cases also occurred among the vaccinated population, primarily among college students who had received two doses of MMR vaccine.

Now, if a vaccine is indeed highly effective, and avoiding the disease in question is worth the risk of the potential side effects from the vaccine, then it could be said that the benefits outweigh the risks.

However, if the vaccine is ineffective, and/or if the disease doesn’t pose a great threat to begin with, then the vaccine may indeed pose an unacceptable risk. This is particularly true if the vaccine has been linked to serious side effects.

Unfortunately, that’s the case with the MMR vaccine, which has been linked to at least 98 deaths and 694 disabilities between 2003 and 2015. Considering the fact that only 1 to 10 percent of vaccine reactions are ever reported, those numbers could actually be closer to 980 deaths and 6,940 disabilities.

Meanwhile, death from mumps is “exceedingly rare” according to the CDC,5 and no one has died from mumps during any of the recent outbreaks.

The Myth of Vaccine-Generated Herd Immunity

Vaccine promoters typically stress the importance of compliance with the vaccine schedule in order to create and maintain vaccine-induced “herd immunity.” This may require multiple doses of certain vaccines, the MMR included, because a vaccine is never 100 percent effective.

However, they never quite seem to be able to explain why the majority of outbreaks occur in areas that are thought to HAVE herd immunity status, i.e. where the majority of people are fully vaccinated and “should” therefore be fully insulated against the disease.

The problem stems from a mix-up of terms. While there is such a thing as natural herd immunity, vaccine-induced herd immunity is a total misnomer. Vaccine makers simply assumed that vaccines will work in the same way as natural immunity, but the science clearly shows that this is not the case.

Vaccination and exposure to a given disease produce two qualitatively different types of immune responses. To learn more, I urge you to listen to the video above, in which Barbara Loe Fisher, co-founder and president of the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC), discusses the concept of herd immunity.

As explained by Barbara:

Vaccines do not confer the same type of immunity that natural exposure to the disease does … [V]accines only confer temporary protection …

In most cases natural exposure to disease would give you a longer lasting, more robust, qualitatively superior immunity because it gives you both cell mediated immunity and humoral immunity.

Humoral is the antibody production. The way you measure vaccine-induced immunity is by how high the antibody titers are. (How many antibodies you have.)

The problem is, the cell mediated immunity is very important as well. Most vaccines evade cell mediated immunity and go straight for the antibodies, which is only one part of immunity.”

 

Ineffective Vaccines May Pose an Unacceptable Health Risk

In essence, vaccines are designed to trick your body’s immune system into producing the antibodies needed to resist any future infection. However, your body is smarter than that. The artificial stimulation of your immune system produced by an attenuated or dead virus is not the same as your body engaging with and overcoming the real live virus.

So the question is, is it well-advised to protect children against infectious disease early in life through temporary immunity from a vaccine, or might they be better off contracting certain contagious infections in childhood, thereby attaining natural immunity that will last them for the rest of their lives?

And, do vaccine complications ultimately cause more chronic illness and death than infectious diseases do? In the case of the MMR vaccine, this question seems particularly pertinent.  While there are 98 reports of death following vaccination between 2003 and 2015, only one child has died from acute measles complications in the decade between 2005 and 2015.6

Democrats Seek Taxpayer Money for Zika Vaccine

While millions suffer from government subsidized diseases caused by obesity and diabetes, and tens of thousands die fromprescription opioids and antibiotic-resistant diseases — all of which stem from ill-advised government policies, the White House is now seeking $2 billion of your tax dollars to create yet another vaccine. This time against the Zika virus, just like they did for bird flu, swine flu, SARS, and so many other very profitable false alarms.

According to the Daily Caller:7

“Democrats in Congress and the White House say they’re convinced the virus could wreak havoc in the U.S. if the nearly two billion dollars isn’t appropriated right now to keep the virus from spreading …

The proposal would direct the bulk of the funds to the Department of Health and Human Services, and a much smaller portion to the U.S. Agency for International Development and the Department of State, to fund increased research on the virus, development of a vaccine and an effort to control mosquito populations.”

The problem is, while the Zika virus was originally blamed for reports of microcephaly among infants born in Brazil, it quickly became apparent that Zika was among the least likely contributors to this birth defect. The Brazilian government also admitted that overly generous parameters resulted in dramatic over-reporting of the condition.

As details started emerging, it became clear that a number of environmental factors could be t play — all of which were far more convincing than the Zika virus. Yet our politicians are still pandering this fear mongering in order to continue lining the chemical and pharmaceutical industries pockets.

Is Zika Virus Really Responsible for Birth Defects?

For starters, large amounts of banned pesticides are in use in the area in question.8,9,10 This includes the pesticide Atrazine. According to research11 published in 2011, small head circumference is one potential side effect of prenatal Atrazine exposure.

Lack of sanitation and widespread vitamin A and zinc deficiency are also potential contributing factors. Vitamin A deficiency has actually been linked to an increased risk of microcephaly specifically,12,13 and zinc is known to play an important role in the structure and function of the brain.14 Even the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) lists malnutrition and exposure to toxic chemicals as two of the three known risk factors for microcephaly.

A report15,16 by an Argentine physician’s organization called “Physicians in the Crop-Sprayed Towns” also challenges the theory that Zika virus is responsible for the microcephaly cases in Brazil. They point out that a chemical larvicide that causes malformations in mosquitoes (pyriproxyfen) has been applied to the drinking water in the affected area of Brazil.

Pyriproxyfen, which has been linked to birth defects, is manufactured by Sumitomo Chemical, a Japanese subsidiary of Monsanto, and has been used in a state-controlled program to eradicate mosquitoes. Imidacloprid, a neonicotinoid, has also been shown to produce skeletal malformation,17,18 and as it turns out, Brazil lifted its ban on aerial spraying of neonicotinoids in October 2012, right around the time these women would have become pregnant.19

Addressing these human health issues would mean taking a long hard look at the use of chemicals, and coming up with more rigorous restrictions on what chemical companies are allowed to pander. Instead, the government turns a blind eye to the obvious, and comes up with a plan to increase the use of chemicals, both internally and externally, in the form of vaccines and mosquito treatments. In my view, this is a highly irrational choice. It’s also a dead giveaway that public health is not their primary focus.

Chinese Parents Question Vaccine Safety

In China, where government mandated mass vaccination programs are a more recent convention, suspicions about vaccine safety have grown rather quickly, and many whose children have been injured by a vaccine have taken to the streets in ongoing protests. Dong Xiaoxin, whose 4-year-old daughter contracted polio after receiving a polio vaccine, spoke to an NPR reporter, saying:20

“Our daughter has made a great sacrifice for the nation’s inoculation program, and we’re not afraid to fight for the legal rights she deserves. We had no idea that vaccines could produce this kind of result. We felt that any vaccination given by the state had to be a good thing. We were completely unprepared. The state needs to provide us parents with some sort of safeguard. Only then can parents feel assured and fully trust the government.”

In her book “Dissolving Illusions: Disease, Vaccines, and the Forgotten History,” Humphries addresses the polio vaccine specifically, noting that through her research, she became convinced that the polio vaccine had very little, if anything, to do with the eradication of polio.

In fact, the successful “eradication” of this disease was accomplished by changing the diagnostic criteria of the disease. What’s worse, the initial vaccine actually led to more cases of paralysis than would have developed naturally.

To save the vaccine, they had to make it appear as though it was working, even though it was causing more problems than it solved. The answer they came up with was to change the diagnostic criteria. The original criterion was two examinations within 24 hours. This was changed to two examinations within 60 days. This artificially decreased the polio rate, because within 60 days, most people recover from their bout with poliomyelitis.

They also began using serological testing, and if the polio virus was not found, the patient was not considered to have polio. Since then, virtually every type of polio vaccine has had some kind of issue, including the propagation of mutated strains of the polio virus. According to Humphries, at one point, the only polio cases in the US were vaccine-induced. And, in the case of the oral polio vaccine, which is still administered in some countries, you end up being the carrier of a highly virulent strain of polio that can infect others.

Protect Your Right to Informed Consent and Defend Vaccine Exemptions

With all the uncertainty surrounding the safety and efficacy of vaccines, it’s critical to protect your right to make independent health choices and exercise voluntary informed consent to vaccination. It is urgent that everyone in America stand up and fight to protect and expand vaccine informed consent protections in state public health and employment laws. The best way to do this is to get personally involved with your state legislators and educating the leaders in your community.

NVIC Advocacy poster

THINK GLOBALLY, ACT LOCALLY.

National vaccine policy recommendations are made at the federal level but vaccine laws are made at the state level. It is at the state level where your action to protect your vaccine choice rights can have the greatest impact.

It is critical for EVERYONE to get involved now in standing up for the legal right to make voluntary vaccine choices in America because those choices are being threatened by lobbyists representing drug companies, medical trade associations, and public health officials, who are trying to persuade legislators to strip all vaccine exemptions from public health laws.

Signing up for NVIC’s free Advocacy Portal at www.NVICAdvocacy.org gives you immediate, easy access to your own state legislators on your smart phone or computer so you can make your voice heard. You will be kept up-to-date on the latest state bills threatening your vaccine choice rights and get practical, useful information to help you become an effective vaccine choice advocate in your own community.

Also, when national vaccine issues come up, you will have the up-to-date information and call to action items you need at your fingertips. So please, as your first step, sign up for the NVIC Advocacy Portal.

Share Your Story With the Media and People You Know

If you or a family member has suffered a serious vaccine reaction, injury, or death, please talk about it. If we don’t share information and experiences with one another, everybody feels alone and afraid to speak up. Write a letter to the editor if you have a different perspective on a vaccine story that appears in your local newspaper. Make a call in to a radio talk show that is only presenting one side of the vaccine story.

I must be frank with you; you have to be brave because you might be strongly criticized for daring to talk about the “other side” of the vaccine story. Be prepared for it and have the courage to not back down. Only by sharing our perspective and what we know to be true about vaccination, will the public conversation about vaccination open up so people are not afraid to talk about it.

We cannot allow the drug companies and medical trade associations funded by drug companies or public health officials promoting forced use of a growing list of vaccines to dominate the conversation about vaccination.

The vaccine injured cannot be swept under the carpet and treated like nothing more than “statistically acceptable collateral damage” of national one-size-fits-all mandatory vaccination policies that put way too many people at risk for injury and death. We shouldn’t be treating people like guinea pigs instead of human beings.

Internet Resources Where You Can Learn More

I encourage you to visit the website of the non-profit charity, the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC), at www.NVIC.org:

  • NVIC Memorial for Vaccine Victims: View descriptions and photos of children and adults, who have suffered vaccine reactions, injuries, and deaths. If you or your child experiences an adverse vaccine event, please consider posting and sharing your story here.
  • If You Vaccinate, Ask 8 Questions: Learn how to recognize vaccine reaction symptoms and prevent vaccine injuries.
  • Vaccine Freedom Wall: View or post descriptions of harassment and sanctions by doctors, employers, and school and health officials for making independent vaccine choices.
  • Vaccine Failure Wall: View or post descriptions about vaccines that have failed to work and protect the vaccinated from disease.

Connect With Your Doctor or Find a New One That Will Listen and Care

If your pediatrician or doctor refuses to provide medical care to you or your child unless you agree to get vaccines you don’t want, I strongly encourage you to have the courage to find another doctor. Harassment, intimidation, and refusal of medical care is becoming the modus operandi of the medical establishment in an effort to stop the change in attitude of many parents about vaccinations after they become truly educated about health and vaccination. However, there is hope.

At least 15 percent of young doctors recently polled admit that they’re starting to adopt a more individualized approach to vaccinations in direct response to the vaccine safety concerns of parents.

It is good news that there is a growing number of smart young doctors, who prefer to work as partners with parents in making personalized vaccine decisions for children, including delaying vaccinations or giving children fewer vaccines on the same day or continuing to provide medical care for those families, who decline use of one or more vaccines.

So take the time to locate a doctor, who treats you with compassion and respect, and is willing to work with you to do what is right for your child.

Sources and References

Taxpayer Money Used to Promote Biotech Propaganda

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By Dr. Mercola

A few weeks ago I wrote about how when a now retired University of Illinois’ professor named Bruce Chassy received money from the U.S. State Department to produce informational videos on genetically modified organisms (GMOs), he collaborated with Monsanto on the content.

Alternet also recently published an article detailing the conflicts of interest between Chassy and Monsanto, and how the professor spent years supporting Monsanto’s agenda without disclosing his financial ties to the company.1

But if you think an “independent” public university professor taking government money to produce propaganda for a private company is bad, consider this:

The new spending bill2,3,4 actually calls for $3 million to be allocated for consumer education and outreach to “promote understanding and acceptance of” biotechnology.

Your Money Is Being Spent to Promote Industry Propaganda

That’s right, not only are the government and the food and chemical technology industries fighting tooth and nail to prevent GMO labeling, your hard-earned tax dollars will also be spent on industry propaganda to “assure” you that genetically engineered (GE) foods are of no concern.

This joint effort by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is an outrage.

Instead of safeguarding environmental and human health, these agencies are simply supporting and promoting the industry agenda, regardless of the cost to society. Indeed, as noted in another recent article, the USDA has come under increasing scrutiny following charges of harassment and censorship of its own scientists.

Vermont Lawmakers Uphold GMO Labeling Law

The Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) and its ally, the Vermont Retail and Grocers Association, are also pressuring Vermont lawmakers to add a rider to the state’s must-pass budget bill.

The rider would delay the deadline for compliance with the state’s GMO labeling law, set to take effect July 1, pushing the deadline all the way back to January 1, 2018.

Clearly, this move has but one purpose, and that is to give these parties more time to convince Congress to implement federal regulations to preempt all state labeling laws, thereby preventing Vermont’s law from ever taking effect. As noted by the Organic Consumers Association:

“Vermont voters and lawmakers overwhelmingly supported Act 120, a law to require GMO labels. The governor signed it into law May 8, 2014. Monsanto and the GMA promptly sued to overturn it, but so far, the courts have refused to block the law…

Monsanto and the GMA have failed to convince enough U.S. Senators to preempt Vermont’s law. They’ve failed to get the votes they need for their DARK — Deny Americans the Right to Know — Act.

So they’re coming in the back door, using the Vermont Senate appropriations process — to delay the law, and buy themselves more time…

Vermont lawmakers claim they can’t hold up the state budget…just to protect the July 1 GMO labeling deadline. That’s just wrong. Vermont voters have waited long enough…Food companies have had ample time to prepare GMO labels…

Vermont lawmakers owe it to their constituents to uphold Vermont’s law and enforce it. Anything less is just pandering to big corporate interests.”

Several Companies Have Already Announced They Will Comply With Vermont Labeling Law

Campbell’s was the first company to announce it is ready to comply with the Vermont law and will begin labeling GMOs. Contrary to GMA scare tactic claims, the company also assured consumers the new label would not result in higher prices.5

Mars, Inc.6 Kellogg Company,7 ConAgra,8 and General Mills9 have since followed suit, announcing they too will comply by labeling all of their foods sold across the U.S. General Mills has also launched an online search tool10 to help you determine which of their products contain GMOs.

These companies are proof positive that the food industry does not need more time to comply, and that the Vermont law should go into effect as planned, without delay.

Food companies have had nearly two years to prepare for GMO labels, and the Vermont Attorney General has already announced that fines will not be levied against non-compliant companies until January 1, 2017.

That gives companies that are lagging behind a 6-month grace period to update their labels, during which time right of action suits cannot be filed against them. So truly, there’s only one reason to push for a delay, and that’s to get the law nullified by some other piece of legislation along the way.

Pro-GMO Senators in Weaker Position Than Ever Before

The Vermont labeling bill passed 28-2. Now, the senators who lost want to modify the bill before it goes into effect, threatening to open the bill up to a fight on the floor unless the deadline gets extended to 2018. But even if that would occur, they hardly stand a chance of winning.

This is because, they’re actually in a weaker position today than when the bill was originally passed two years ago.

For starters, in March 2015 the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), which is the research arm of the World Health Organization (WHO), determined that glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide, is a Class 2A “probable human carcinogen.”

This determination was based on evidence showing the popular weed killer can cause non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and lung cancer in humans, along with “convincing evidence” it can also cause cancer in animals.

We also know that glyphosate use has dramatically increased as a direct result of GE crops, and that alone is a significant health concern that cannot be overlooked when discussing GMOs and GMO labeling.

Glyphosate Toxicity Is an Important Part of the GMO Labeling Discussion

Before GE crops, glyphosate was used sparingly, as it kills any plant it touches. This meant farmers could not apply it near their crops, lest they risk killing off their crops as well. It was only used where farmers wanted to kill all vegetation, such as between the rows in orchards or in industrial yards.

This all changed in 1996, when Monsanto’s so-called “Roundup Ready,” GE glyphosate-tolerant crops were introduced.

Since these crops are impervious to glyphosate’s toxic effects, farmers can spray the chemical onto their crops with abandon. And due to mounting weed resistance, that’s exactly what they’ve had to do. Since 1996, glyphosate use has risen nearly 15-fold.11

Since glyphosate was introduced in 1974, 1.8 million tons have been applied to U.S. fields, and two-thirds of that volume has been sprayed in the last 10 years.

Monsanto has also successfully promoted the use of Roundup on non-GE crops as a desiccant.12 Basically, the chemical is sprayed on crops right before harvesting to dry out the crop and allow farmers to harvest earlier — a technique that results in a higher profits as earlier harvest yields higher prices.

Contrary to the U.S., the EU Parliament is calling on the Commission to severely restrict the permitted usage of glyphosate, and to ban pre-harvest dessication in order to protect human health.13

Glyphosate use is in fact so excessive at this point that even organic farms are now plagued by glyphosate residues in their produce, even though it’s not actually sprayed on their farms. It drifts over from other farms.

In Vermont, herbicide use on corn increased by 39 percent since the advent of GE corn. Nitrogen fertilizer use has also increased by 17 percent. Moreover, nearly all — 99.4 percent to be exact — of the chemicals used on GE corn grown in Vermont are suspected hormone disruptors, capable of promoting cancer and birth defects.

All of these facts have a bearing on the GMO discussion, and add weight to the call for clear labeling. Vermont is the first state to pass a no-strings-attached GMO labeling law, and it needs to be implemented as planned.

Farm Subsidies Only Make the Rich Richer

While millions of taxpayer dollars will be spent to convince you of the merits of GMOs — which also means they’re promoting processed foods, since that’s where the majority of GE crops end up — little is being done to promote the growing of healthier foods like fresh fruits and vegetables on small farms.

A recent report14 by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) points out that no less than 50 American billionaires received at least $6.3 million in commodity support payments from farm bill programs between 1995 and 2014. Among them are David Rockefeller Sr., Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker, Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, and Charles Schwab. According to the EWG:

“[T]hese fat cats likely received even more subsidies through the federal crop insurance program … On average, taxpayers cover 62 percent of the cost of crop insurance premiums …

Of the 50 billionaires, 46 grow corn, soybeans, sorghum, cotton, rice and barley — commodities that are eligible for both traditional farm subsidies and crop insurance subsidies. Only two of the billionaires exclusively raise livestock, which aren’t eligible for subsidies but qualify for disaster assistance …”

In short, your tax dollars are spent to promote a dietary trend that leads to diabetes, heart disease and cancer, and now they will spend another $3 million to further the completely biased and scientifically unsupported idea that GMOs are safe and beneficial. Talk about misappropriation of funds! So what can you do? The greatest leverage we have as individuals is to vote for the system we want with every purchase.

Boycott GMA Members

For the past three years, there’s been an ongoing call to boycott GMA members  until they cancel their membership, and if you haven’t done so before, I urge you to consider getting serious about boycotting these traitor brands now.

The GMA has led the industry charge to undermine your right to know about GMOs, and they’ve even resorted to illegal measures to keep you in the dark. So really, by being members of the GMA, they are affiliated with a criminal element that destroys their reputation and severely undermines their integrity.


Tweet this Boycott the GMA Today! #Organic #Healthy via @mercola


The Organic Consumers Association (OCA) has created a smart phone application called Buycott, which has already been downloaded by almost half a million people, to step up the boycott against GMA member brands.

The app also helps you determine ethical brands that deserve your patronage. If you don’t have a smartphone, or if you don’t want to use your smart phone in the grocery store, it’s even simpler. Don’t buy any processed food or beverage, or any food whatsoever unless it has one or more of these labels:

  • “USDA 100 percent Organic”
  • “100 percent grass-fed”
  • “Non-GMO Verified”

North Carolina Law Silences ALL Whistleblowers

The food and agricultural industries have created a trend that now severely threatens human health, which is ironic considering food is the most important cornerstone for a healthy life. Everywhere you turn these industries are lobbying for more relaxed safety regulations that will allow them to conduct business in pretty much any which way they want.

In addition to fighting against GMO labeling and stricter controls on toxic agricultural chemicals, pushing for so called “ag-gag” laws, which ban undercover recordings on farms, is another example.

Oftentimes, such tactics are the only way to reveal the worst offenders, which benefits society at large. Now, North Carolina has taken matters a giant step further. As of January 1, 2016, no one is allowed to tape malfeasance or wrong-doing anywhere, at anyworkplace, including nursing homes, day care centers, and veteran care facilities. As reported by The New York Times:15

“Anyone who violates the law — say, by secretly taping abuses of elderly patients or farm animals and then sharing the recording with the media or an advocacy group — can be sued by business owners for bad publicity and be required to pay a fine of $5,000 for each day that person is gathering information or recording without authorization.

The law originally singled out factory-farm exposés, but after it twice failed to pass in the face of resistance from animal-rights activists, lawmakers succeeded in pushing through a version that covered everyone equally. Gov. Pat McCrory, who said he was concerned the law would make it harder for employees to report illegal activity, vetoed the measure, but the state’s legislature, the General Assembly, overrode the veto last June.”

The only way whistleblowers can expose abuses at the workplace is by reporting it directly to a superior and/or state authority. Alas, such reporting rarely if ever actually becomes public knowledge, and that’s exactly what the law aims to achieve. “As one of its sponsors told a Senate committee last year, the whole point is to stop people who would go ‘running out to a news outlet,'” NYT writes.

Fight for Your Right to Know

A coalition of organizations, including People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, Center for Food Safety, the Animal Legal Defense Fund, Farm Sanctuary, Food & Water Watch, and the Government Accountability Project, have argued that this North Carolina law is a clear violation of the constitutional freedoms of speech and the press. They filed a federal lawsuit16 to have the law overturned in January, shortly after its passing. As noted by The New York Times:

“They have precedent to back them up, in the form of a decision by a federal judge last August that struck down an ag-gag law in Idaho on free-speech grounds, the first such ruling in the country. Activists who pose as employees to gain access to farming operations, the judge wrote, ‘actually advance core First Amendment values by exposing misconduct to the public eye and facilitating dialogue on issues of considerable public interest.'”

Indeed, people rely on activists and responsible journalists to expose abuse and misconduct, regardless of who’s doing it, or where it occurs. How else are we to be made aware of these problems? We also rely on journalists and experts to truthfully and accurately relay information that is of importance to our health and well-being. This absolutely includes GMOs and other agricultural practices. Yet again and again, we see how the media is being manipulated to parrot industry PR.

“The secrecy promoted by ag-gag laws should have no place in American society,” The New York Times writes. And I would say that secrecy about food — its ingredients and how it’s made — has no place in American society either. Any responsible company should welcome third-party scrutiny, to affirm the quality and benefits of its products.

The fact that so many food companies are spending millions of dollars to prevent consumers from knowing whether a product contains GMOs or not is a clear sign they know they’re selling something inherently questionable.

They know, or at least suspect, that their ingredients do not meet consumer expectations. There’s really no other reason to go so far as to break laws and violate human and constitutional freedoms to prevent people from knowing what their food is made of! If you agree, then do something about it — boycott the traitor brands. No amount of complaining will be as effective as vanishing sales to encourage a company to do the right thing.

As for what you can do right this moment, please remember to call Vermont lawmakers TODAY — even if you don’t live there. The two numbers you can use are: 802-828-2228 and 1-800-322-5616. Tell them to NOT make any amendments to Vermont’s GMO labeling law, because consumers in all 50 states are counting on them to protect our right to know.

What You Need to Know About GMOs

Genetically modified organisms (GMOs), or genetically “engineered” (GE) foods, are live organisms whose genetic components have been artificially manipulated in a laboratory setting through creating unstable combinations of plant, animal, bacteria, and even viral genes that do not occur in nature or through traditional crossbreeding methods.

GMO proponents claim that genetic engineering is “safe and beneficial,” and that it advances the agricultural industry. They also say that GMOs help ensure the global food supply and sustainability. But is there any truth to these claims? I believe not. For years, I’ve stated the belief that GMOs pose one of the greatest threats to life on the planet. Genetic engineering is NOT the safe and beneficial technology that it is touted to be.

The FDA cleared the way for GE (Genetically Engineered) Atlantic salmon to be farmed for human consumption. Thanks to added language in the federal spending bill, the product will require special labeling so at least consumers will have the ability to identify the GE salmon in stores. However, it’s imperative ALL GE foods be labeled, which is currently still being denied.

 

The FDA is threatening the existence of our food supply. We have to start taking action now. I urge you to share this article with friends and family. If we act together, we can make a difference and put an end to the absurdity.

QR Codes Are NOT an Adequate Substitute for Package Labels

The biotech industry is trying to push the QR code as an answer for consumer concerns about GE foods. QR stands for Quick Response, and the code can be scanned and read by smart phones and other QR readers.

The code brings you to a product website that provides further details about the product. The video below shows you why this is not an ideal solution. There’s nothing forcing companies to declare GMOs on their website. On the contrary, GE foods are allowed to be promoted as “natural,” which further adds to the confusion.

 

These so-called “Smart Labels” hardly improve access to information. Instead, by making finding the truth time-consuming and cumbersome, food makers can be assured that most Americans will remain ignorant about the presence of GMOs in their products. Besides, everyone has a right to know what’s in the food. You shouldn’t have to own a smartphone to obtain this information.

Vermont’s mandatory labeling law is scheduled to go into effect July 1. Now, Monsanto is going with the only strategy it has left to block it — a Senate version of H.R.1599, also referred to as the DARK (Denying Americans the Right to Know) Act. Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan) introduced the bill, which would preempt Vermont’s GMO labeling law, and replace state mandatory labeling laws with a federal voluntary labeling plan.

Fortunately, on March 16, the Senate rejected the bill, falling far short of the 60 votes it needed in its favor to pass. This is great news, but though the DARK Act was defeated, it’s not over yet.

Roberts said he would still work to find another way to preempt the law, and majority leader Mitch McConnell changed his vote from YES to NO for procedural reasons. This allows him to bring up the bill again later if a compromise is created, and the creation of such a compromise is certainly already underway.

Vermont’s law is set to take effect on July 1. It’s imperative you take action now by contacting your senators. Ask them to oppose any compromise that would block or delay Vermont’s labeling law. It’s critical that we flood Senators’ phone lines — it’s now or never for GMO labeling.

Contact your senators

Non-GMO Food Resources by Country

If you are searching for non-GMO foods, here is a list of trusted sites you can visit.

Sources and References

Why You Need to Eat More Vegetables

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By Dr. Mercola

Low in calories, high in fiber, and with almost all the vitamins and minerals your body needs, vegetables are a nutritional cornerstone. While many think vegetables equate to a few leaves of lettuce and some tomatoes, there’s a wide variety of veggies available, and you can use them in a number of different ways.

In addition to eating them raw in a salad, many can be lightly steamed or cooked, and you can boost your consumption by juicing them, or add them to stews and soups. Homegrown sprouts and fermented vegetables are other options that can significantly improve your diet.

Fermenting is one of the best ways to turn ordinary vegetables into superfoods. The culturing process produces beneficial microbes that are extremely important for health as they help balance your intestinal flora, thereby boosting overall immunity.

Fermented foods are also some of the best chelators and detox agents available, meaning they can help rid your body of a wide variety of toxins, including heavy metals.

Since most veggies aren’t very calorie-dense, they should ideally constitute the bulk of your diet by volume. Tragically, very few actually get a healthy amount of veggies in their diet. As noted by Time magazine,1 vegetable consumption has actually declined over the past five years.

“About half of the total U.S. population eats less than 1.5 cups of vegetables a day. And a whopping 87 percent don’t reach the recommended minimum goal of 2 to 3 cups a day.”

More Reasons to Eat Vegetables

If you are in the majority who’s skimping on veggies, you’re really missing out on major health benefits, including the following:2

Healthy glowing skin Courtesy of their higher water and phytochemical content, vegetables help produce that healthy “glow.”

As noted in the featured article, a “study3 from St. Andrews University concluded that people who ate three additional daily portions of produce for six weeks were ranked as better looking than those with lower intakes.”

The cause for this improvement? The carotenoids pigments that give vegetables their red and orange colors also improve the color of your skin, rendering it more rosy and glowing.

Many vegetables are also known for their anti-aging benefits, helping firm your skin and combat wrinkles.

Weight management Low in net carbs (total carbs minus fiber) and high in fiber, eating plenty of vegetables can help you lose and manage your weight in more ways than one.

Simply cutting net carbs and increasing your fiber intake may actually help you achieve results rivaling more complicated diets.

Previous research has demonstrated that fiber has appetite-suppressant qualities that helps you feel more satiated, thereby preventing unhealthy snacking.

Fiber also helps improve metabolic markers such as blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and blood sugar; helps protect your heart and cardiovascular health, and appears to reduce mortality from all causes.

Improves gut health and keeps you “regular” Constipation is one of the most common bowel problems, impacting nearly 1 in 5 Americans at any given time.

It’s uncomfortable, and can cause bloating and painful cramps.

The fiber and water in vegetables can help prevent this scenario, and promotes optimal gut health in general by nourishing beneficial gut bacteria.

Athletic performance and recovery Nutrition is imperative for athletic performance. Specific veggies shown to boost endurance and speed up recovery include beetroot juice, tomato juice, and watercress.

As reported in the featured article, one study “found that drinking 16 ounces of organic beetroot juice daily for six days helped men cycle up to 16 percent longer than they did with a placebo beverage.4

Meanwhile 100 percent tomato juice has been found to reduce exercise-induced stress on the body by as much as 84 percent.”5

Improves energy, mood, and psychological well-being Vegetables help boost energy levels, especially if you cut out net carbs and processed foods at the same time.

Juicing tends to be particularly potent and quick-acting in this regard.

Recent research shows higher vegetable intake can also help you feel calmer and improves your mental well-being.6

Eating fruits and vegetables was also related to greater self-reported curiosity and creativity — traits associated with happiness.7

Reduces risk for chronic disease Vegetables help reduce your risk for many chronic diseases, including diabetes, heart disease, stroke and certain cancers.

In one recent study, eating just over one extra serving of leafy greens a day reduced the risk of type 2 diabetes by 14 percent.8

Part of this benefit is due to the fiber content.

The fiber in vegetables is broken down into health-promoting short chain fatty acids (SCFAs) by your gut bacteria, and SCFAs have been shown to lessen your risk of inflammatory diseases.9

Boosts healthy immune function Researchers have discovered10 that a gene called T-bet — which is essential for producing critical immune cells in your gut — is activated by leafy green vegetables.

These immune cells, called Innate lymphoid cells (ILCs), reside in the lining of your digestive tract, and ILCs are thought to be essential for:11

  • Maintaining balance between tolerance, immunity and inflammation in your body
  • Producing interleukin-22 (IL-22), a hormone that can protect your body from pathogenic bacteria
  • Maintaining healthy intestinal balance by promoting growth of beneficial bacteria and healing small wounds and abrasions in the gut
  • Helping resolve cancerous lesions and prevent the development of bowel cancers
  • Preventing food allergies, inflammatory diseases, and obesity

The Health Benefits of Purple Foods

Vegetables contain an array of antioxidants and other disease-fighting compounds that are very difficult to get anywhere else. Plant chemicals called phytochemicals can reduce inflammation and eliminate carcinogens, while others regulate the rate at which your cells reproduce, get rid of old cells, and maintain DNA integrity. Many of the benefits associated with vegetables are due to the natural pigments in the food.

While it’s advisable to eat all the “colors of the rainbow,” purple foods tend to stand out above the crowd, courtesy of their potent antioxidants called anthocyanins.12 Research has linked anthocyanins to a reduced risk for a number of diseases, including cancer, cardiovascular disease, and neurological dysfunction and decline.

They also help prevent obesity and diabetes, in part by inhibiting certain enzymes in your digestive tract, and by supporting healthy blood sugar control. They also have potent anti-inflammatory effects, which helps explain their protective effects against chronic disease. Deep red and blue foods — including all berries and cherries — are also loaded with beneficial antioxidants. Vegetables high in anthocyanins include:

  • Red onions
  • Purple cabbage
  • Beets
  • Eggplant

Cruciferous Veggies Are an Important Part of an Anti-Cancer Diet

Vegetables are also a key component if you want to reduce your risk of cancer.13,14 Cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage, appear to be particularly important, and have been repeatedly shown to help prevent certain cancers by inhibiting cancer cell growth and promoting apoptosis (cell death). According to Olga Azarenko, a scientist at the UC Santa Barbara laboratories, whose research shows how the healing power of these vegetables works at the cellular level:15

“Breast cancer, the second leading cause of cancer deaths in women, can be protected against by eating cruciferous vegetables such as cabbage and near relatives of cabbage such as broccoli and cauliflower. These vegetables contain compounds called isothiocyanates which we believe to be responsible for the cancer-preventive and anti-carcinogenic activities in these vegetables.”

Broccoli, and even more so broccoli sprouts, contain the highest amounts of isothiocyanates. Other vegetables containing isothiocyanates include the following:

Brussel sprouts Cauliflower Cabbage
Arugula Watercress Horseradish

The isothiocyanates in these vegetables sparks hundreds of genetic changes, activating some genes that fight cancer and switch off others that fuel tumors.16 According to one recent study,17 “research suggests that cruciferous vegetables are not only an important source of nutrients, but perhaps a key to eliminating cancer as life threatening disease.” Besides breast cancer, studies have confirmed the protective benefits of these vegetables for other types of cancer as well, such as:

  • Bladder cancer – Researchers found that the higher the intake of cruciferous vegetables, the lower the risk of bladder cancer in men by as much as 50 percent18
  • Lung cancer – Researchers found that men with detectable amounts of isothiocyanates in their bodies had a 36 percent lower chance of developing lung cancer over 10 years19
  • Prostate cancer – Just a few additional portions of broccoli each week was found to protect men from prostate cancer20
  • Liver cancer — Recent research suggests eating broccoli three to five times per week can lower your risk of liver cancer, and help prevent the development of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)21,22,23

The ‘Trick’ to Maximizing Sulforaphane in Your Broccoli

One naturally occurring isothiocyanate known for its potent anti-cancer activity is sulforaphane, which is formed when you chop or chew broccoli (this combines its precursor glucoraphanin and the enzyme myrosinase). Once swallowed, gut bacteria help release some of broccoli’s sulforaphane so your body can benefit, but it’s a tricky proposition because sulforaphane is attached to a sugar molecule with a sulfur bond.

In order for the sulforaphane to be released, an enzyme in the broccoli breaks off the sugar to release it. However, the sulforaphane can be easily inactivated by a sulfur-grabbing protein.

Researchers have found that one of the best ways to maximize sulforaphane your body can use is to heat the broccoli for 10 minutes at 140 degrees Fahrenheit (or steam it lightly for three to four minutes until it’s tough-tender).24 This was just enough heat to kill the epithiospecifier protein, which attaches to the sulfur and greatly depletes the amount of bioavailable sulforaphane.

Another option is to eat broccoli sprouts. Fresh broccoli sprouts are FAR more potent than whole broccoli, allowing you to eat far less in terms of quantity. Tests have revealed that 3-day-old broccoli sprouts consistently contain anywhere from 10 to 100 times the amount of glucoraphanin – the precursor to sulforaphane – found in mature broccoli.25

Luteolin — Another Important Anti-Cancer Compound

Luteolin is another important anti-inflammatory plant compound found in certain vegetables, including celery, peppers, and carrots. It’s previously been linked with lower rates of age-related memory loss in mice,26 but more recently, researchers discovered it may also slow the development of breast cancer27,28 – particularly cancer caused by hormone replacement therapy (HRT).

According to the researchers, benign lesions in breast tissues may turn into tumors if they receive a “trigger” such as progestin, which attracts blood vessels and “feeds” the lesions, allowing them to expand. When this occurs, the breast cancer cells “take on stem cell-like properties, which can make them harder to kill,” the study’s lead researcher stated.

However, when breast cancer cells were exposed to luteolin in the lab, their viability markedly decreased. Not only did the blood vessels feeding the cells significantly decline, but their “stem cell-like properties” were also reduced, resulting in an anti-tumor effect. The researchers then tested luteolin on mice with breast cancer and similar benefits were observed.

Sprouts, a Living Food With Amazing Health Benefits

If you struggle getting enough vegetables into your diet, try juicing, and add sprouts. Sprouts are exceptionally packed with nutrients, including antioxidants, minerals, vitamins and enzymes that protect against free radical damage, so in terms of volume you can get away with eating far less.

The content of vitamins and essential fatty acids increase dramatically during the sprouting process. Sunflower seed and pea sprouts tend to top the list of all the seeds that you can sprout and are typically each about 30 times more nutritious than organic vegetables you can even harvest in your backyard garden.

The quality of the protein and the fiber content of beans, nuts, seeds and grains also improve when sprouted because minerals, such as calcium and magnesium, bind to protein, making them more bioavailable. Sprouts can also contain up to 100 times more enzymes than raw fruits and vegetables, allowing your body to extract more vitamins, minerals, amino acids and essential fats from other foods.

Sprouts support healthy cell regeneration, and have an alkalinizing effect on your body that is thought to protect against disease, including cancer (as many tumors are acidic). Abundantly rich in oxygen, sprouts also help protect against viruses and bacteria that cannot survive in an oxygen-rich environment.

Sprouts are the ultimate locally-grown food, and can easily be grown in your own kitchen, so you know exactly what you’re eating. Another boon is their low cost. Sprouts-as-medicine.com29 is a good source for things relating to sprouts: their health benefits, recipes, and how to grow your own.

The British verticalveg.org30 is another. The latter gives helpful growing tips for each month of the year. One of the benefits of sprouts is that you can grow them year-round, even when it’s cold and dark. The article 6 Easy Steps to Sprout Heaven31 teaches you how to grow your own sprouts, from start to finish. Some of the most commonly sprouted beans, nuts, seeds and grains include:

Broccoli: known to have anti-cancer properties, courtesy of the enzyme “sulforaphane” Alfalfa: a significant dietry source of phytoestrogens. Also a good source of vitamins A, B, C, D, E, F, and K Wheat grass: high in Vitamins B, C, E and many minerals Mung bean: good source of protein, fiber, vitamin C and A
Clover: significant source of isoflavones Lentil sprouts: contain 26 percent protein, and can be eaten without cooking Sunflower: contains, minerals, healthy fats, essential fatty acids, fiber, and phytosterols. It’s also one of the highest in protein Pea shoots: good source of vitamins A, C and folic acid and one of the highest in protein

My Most Recommended Vegetables List

My recommended list of vegetables (below) provides a guide to the most nutritious vegetables, and those to limit due to their high carbohydrate content (think: starch is “hidden sugar”). Organic and locally grown vegetables are ideal for maximizing nutrition, limiting pesticide exposure, and increasing freshness. Avoid wilted vegetables, as they lose much of their nutritional value once they wilt.

Again, juicing is a great way to boost your vegetable intake. When you drink fresh-made green juice, it is almost like receiving an intravenous infusion of vitamins, minerals, and enzymes because they go straight into your system without having to be broken down.

Highly Recommended Vegetables
Asparagus Escarole
Avocado, very high in healthy monounsaturated fat Fennel
Beet greens Green and red cabbage
Bok choy Kale
Broccoli Endive
Brussels sprouts Lettuce: romaine, red leaf, green leaf
Cauliflower Mustard greens
Celery Onions
Chicory Parsley
Chinese cabbage Peppers: red, green, yellow and hot
Chives Tomatoes
Collard greens Turnips
Cucumbers Spinach
Dandelion greens Zucchini
Use sparingly due to high carbohydrate levels
Beets Jicama
Carrots Winter squashes
Eggplant
Vegetables (or commonly perceived vegetables) to Avoid
Potatoes Corn

Sources and References

The Surprising Health Benefits of Extreme Hot and Cold Temperatures

Source

By Dr. Mercola

When it comes to improving your health, some of the simplest strategies can have a tremendous impact. For example, did you know that exposure to extreme temperatures can serve as a catalyst to improve your health?

In a previous interview, biological scientist Rhonda Patrick, Ph.D. discussed the importance of mitochondrial function — a topic she expands on in this interview. As it turns out, exposure to extreme temperatures, be it hot or cold, actually improves mitochondrial function.

Mitochondria are the energy generators in your cells. While you have about 35 trillion bacteria and as many cells in our body, you have about 500 to 1,000 times more mitochondria. Estimates suggest you may have anywhere from 15 to 50 quadrillion mitochondria.

When your mitochondria are not working properly, your body’s ability to generate energy is impaired. The key is to get the old ones out and to create new ones — a process known as mitochondrial biogenesis. There are a number of strategies that can do that, including:

  • Exposure to extreme hot and cold temperatures
  • Exercise
  • Intermittent fasting or time-restricted feeding
  • Certain supplements, such as resveratrol

All of these strategies stimulate the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-gamma coactivator 1 alpha (PGC-1 alpha), which is the primary driver for mitochondrial biogenesis. And when it comes to maintaining biological functioning and good health, the more mitochondria you have the better.

Mitochondrial Biogenesis Benefits From Hormesis

According to Patrick, exposure to extreme cold is likely the most effective way to boost mitochondrial biogenesis, followed by exposure to heat, and exercise.

All of the strategies listed above place stress on your body, and while stress is generally viewed as a detriment to health, short bouts of stress actually produce benefits by way of hormesis.

Hormesis refers to a process of exposing your body to a very short burst of stress, be it exercise, heat, cold, fasting, or antioxidants like resveratrol.

Because it’s a short burst of stress, your body reacts to this stress by activating a variety of stress response pathways that are hardwired and encoded in your genes. As explained by Patrick:

“It turns them on because they’re thinking, ‘I’ve got to prepare for war. This is stress. I need to make sure I fight this off.’ Not only does it activate all these really good pathways to fight off the stress you’re dealing with immediately, but it is preparing for future war.

[Your body] is basically thinking to itself, ‘I may encounter this stress again. I have to activate all these good pathways that can help me deal with stress. That way, the next time I encounter it, I’m ready to fight it off.’

That’s really one of the main reasons why short bursts of stress are so good for you, because we have so many amazing genes in our body that are so powerful. The problem is that as we age, they don’t become activated as often. We need to find ways to activate them more …”

Benefits of Heat Stress

Exercise is one form of heat stress, as you’re elevating your core temperature. Other ways of raising your core temperature include taking a hot bath, or using a steam room or sauna. The heat stress generated helps activate genes that are important for optimizing heat shock proteins (HSP) inside your cells.

This is important, as these proteins get damaged with time and need to be renewed. Accumulation of damaged HSP can lead to plaque formation in your brain and/or vascular system.

Heat stress helps prevent this adverse chain of events. HSP are also involved in longevity, so it’s really good to have a lot of HSP. They’re also important for preventing your skeletal muscle from atrophying, because they prevent proteins from being degraded.

“[A]nimal studies have shown that when mice are exposed to the sauna they increase their protein synthesis by 30 percent compared to the mice that are not being exposed to the sauna.

This was shown to be dependent on the heat shock proteins, HSPs, in the muscle. [T]he important thing here is the actual heat stress. You want to feel uncomfortable. You want to feel hot. That’s when you know that these good pathways are getting activated.

The other thing that happens in terms of mitochondrial biogenesis and the reason why it occurs when you’re exposed to heat, is that heat itself is a stressor on the body and it creates reactive oxygen species (ROS).

[ROS are also] generated when you exercise; when you’re causing your body to work more. These ROS act as a signaling molecule to make more mitochondria.

If you exercise and take a supplemental vitamin E or something that can sort of soak up the ROS, you can negate some of the positive benefits from exercise because you are now not getting those signaling molecules saying, ‘Hey, we’ve got stress here. Let’s make more mitochondria to deal with the stress.’

It’s really important that you actually have some of that stress. That’s part of the mechanism by which it increases mitochondrial biogenesis.”

 

How Heat Stress Benefits Athletic Performance

Heat stress can also help boost endurance in athletes—a topic she covers more in-depth in her Hypothermic Conditioning Report,available for free download here.

In one study, athletes who spent 30 minutes in the sauna after their workouts, two times a week for three weeks, were able to increase the time it took for them to run until exhaustion by 32 percent, compared to baseline. As noted by Patrick in her report: “In other words, hyperthermic conditioning through sauna use doesn’t just make you better at dealing with heat; it makes you better, period.”

But how exactly does heat boost athletic endurance? First of all, heat stress causes a number of adaptations that reduce the adverse effects associated with elevated body temperatures. This includes:

  • Reduced heart rate
  • Lower core body temperature during exercise
  • Higher sweat rate and increased thermoregulatory control
  • Increased plasma volume, which optimizes blood flow to your heart, muscles, skin, and other tissues
  • Reduced rate of glycogen depletion due to improved blood flow to skeletal muscle

In short, being heat acclimated helps enhance endurance, and there are three different mechanisms at work here:

  1. By increasing plasma volume and blood flow to your heart, it reduces cardiovascular strain and lowers your heart rate during exercise
  2. By increasing blood flow to your muscles, more nutrients such as glucose and oxygen are delivered, thereby reducing fatigue. According to Patrick, hyperthermic conditioning can reduce muscle glycogen use by as much as 50 percent
  3. By improving thermoregulatory control and increasing sweat rate, your core body heat can remain lower even during high exertion. Once you’re heat acclimated, sweating occurs at a lower body temperature than previously, and you sweat longer

How Heat Stress Benefits Your Brain

Heat also has very robust and profound effects on your brain. Your body responds to heat by cooling itself down, and it does that by increasing production of dynorphin—the chemical opposite of endorphins. However, dynorphin sensitizes your brain to endorphins, which can have a mood boosting effect. Dynorphin is responsible for that dysphoric feeling when you’re hot, when you’re lying in the sun, or when you’re exercising.

“I think what’s really important for people to understand is everyone’s always trying to avoid stress. They want to be comfortable. I think the reason for that is people are aware of the fact that chronic stress is bad. When you’re constantly having a stressor, you don’t have this positive hormetic response to it …

But the short burst of stress is really good … It has this feedback mechanism where it increases the expression of a receptor that binds to endorphin, called the mu opioid receptor. You make more of these receptors. That way, the next time you produce endorphin, you’re more sensitive to it … So you actually can relieve anxiety,” Patrick says.

The ROS generated when you’re exposed to heat also benefits your brain by increasing production of growth factors, such as brain-derived neurotropic factor (BDNF), which in turn promote the growth of neurons. With age, neurons are lost in many brain regions, and sauna bathing can be an important strategy to slow down or prevent brain aging.

Sauna Bathing Is Good for Your Heart

Heat also has a profound effect on your heart and cardiovascular health. A Finnish study published last year found that men who used the sauna two to three times a week had a 27 percent lower death rate from heart disease and a 24 percent lower all-cause mortality rate compared to those who only used the sauna once a week.

Men who used it four to seven times a week had a 50 percent reduction in death from heart disease, and a 40 percent reduction in all-cause mortality. So there’s a clear dose-dependent response, meaning the more frequently you use the sauna, the greater the beneficial effect. These heart and cardiovascular benefits are related to the fact that when you get hot:

  • Your heart rate increases, just as during exercise
  • Your blood vessels dilate
  • The smooth muscle cells that line your blood vessels relax

Temperature matters, of course. In this study, they used the traditional hot, dry Finnish sauna. The temperature averaged 79 degrees Celsius (174 degrees Fahrenheit), which is extremely hot by most standards. The duration was typically 20 minutes or longer. Infrared saunas and steam rooms operate at lower temperatures, so the outcomes might not be identical were you to compare them. Still, heat that isn’t as extreme will provide similar benefits.

Benefits of Cryotherapy

As with heat, the rationale for exposing yourself to very cold temperatures also has to do with the benefits associated with hormesis. You may have heard that cold temperatures can help you burn more body fat, and mitochondrial biogenesis is directly involved in this process.

When you’re exposed to cold, your body increases production of norepinephrine in the brain, which is involved in focus and attention. It also improves mood and alleviates pain, partly because it lowers inflammation. You can increase norepinephrine two-fold just by getting into 40-degree water for 20 seconds, or 57-degree water for a few minutes.

While best known as a neurotransmitter, norepinephrine also acts as a hormone. One of its functions is causing vasoconstriction, which helps your body conserve heat. Norepinephrine also acts as a signaling molecule to make more mitochondria in your fat tissue (your main energy reserves), and a byproduct of energy production is heat.

This also helps prepare you for the next time you’re exposed to cold. The more times you’re exposed to cold, the more mitochondria you make in your fat cells and the better you can withstand lower temperatures. This is a topic Dr. Patrick covers more in-depth in her cold shock report, available for free download here.

So yes, you do “get acclimated” to colder temperatures with time. Wim Hof, aka. “The Iceman,” is a perfect example of this. He’s exposed himself to cold on a daily basis for decades. As a result, he’s now able to withstand the cold for much longer periods than one might consider normal, because his body can generate more heat. As explained by Patrick, “The more mitochondria you have in your fat, the more fat you’re burning, the more heat you can make, the longer you can stay in the cold.”

The Hormesis of Cryotherapy

As mentioned, when you expose yourself to heat, you make heat shock protein. When exposing yourself to cold, in addition to increasing norepinephrine you also make cold shock protein, known as the RNA-binding motif 3 or RBM3, in your brain.

This is another intriguing example of hormesis. Interestingly, when you’re exposed to cold, you actually degrade synapses (the connections between neurons), but RBM3 completely regenerates them. This has been shown in hibernating animals like bears and squirrels.

“There’s this really great study that was published not long ago that showed when you take a mouse genetically engineered to get Alzheimer’s disease and expose it to cold, so that it’s increasing RBM3, it delays the onset of Alzheimer’s. Even though they were genetically engineered to get Alzheimer’s disease, they get it much, much later,” Patrick says.

Studies have also been done on human cells, showing that RBM3 does get activated when the brain cells are exposed to cold, and that the temperature change needed is only about 1.5 degrees Fahrenheit. More research needs to be done, but preliminary work such as this suggests cryotherapy (cold treatment) could have a neuroprotective effect.

Caveat: Avoid Cryotherapy Directly Following Strength Training

There is one important caveat worth mentioning. When you’re doing strengthening exercises you generate ROS that help increase muscle mass. If you expose yourself to cold within the first hour after strength training, you suppress that beneficial process, so avoid doing cold immersion (such as a really cold shower or ice bath) immediately after strength training.

On the other hand, spending some time in the sauna after exercise may actually help increase muscle mass. It’ll also help with detoxification, allowing you to sweat out toxins that can wreak havoc on mitochondrial function in general. As explained by Patrick:

“This is what’s important to understand — Exercise is a stress on the body. You’re making reactive oxygen species. You’re generating inflammation. But that’s a good thing because it’s a short burst, and you want it.

… There’s a one hour timeframe from the time you stop exercising [in which inflammation peaks]. That is the stressful period. But then as soon as an hour hits, the stress response kicks in and you start to have a potent anti-inflammatory [response]. You start having an antioxidant response from activating all these good genes that stay activate for a long time.

What happens is that because the cold also is causing an anti-inflammatory response, it’s important that you don’t get that anti-inflammatory response too soon, because you need some of that exercise-induced inflammation. You want that inflammation to happen to get the anti-inflammatory response. That’s important for the strength training.

The inflammation you generate during the strength training is part of the mechanism for making more proteins in the skeletal muscle. If you blunt that, then you’re going to blunt the effects of the strength training. The question is then can you do it an hour or two hours later? Studies have shown, yes, you can do cold exposure, cold water immersion and actually get some performance enhancements even from doing [that].”

Listen to Your Body

While sauna bathing and cold water immersion are generally safe, if you have any sort of medical condition, discuss it with your doctor beforehand, since both hot and cold put stress on your heart and cardiovascular system. Also listen to your body. Individual tolerance for hot and cold temperatures vary widely, and if you push it too far you can do yourself harm.

Cryotherapy tends to be a bit riskier than sauna, which is typically very beneficial for people with cardiovascular-related diseases, courtesy of the vasodilation and increased blood flow. Cold causes acute vasoconstriction, which can be potentially dangerous if you have a heart condition. A quick cold shower would probably be okay, but avoid ice baths or other extreme cold water immersion techniques.

“With that said, in general it’s really, really good to listen to your body. You need to recover from the stress; otherwise it’s not going to be beneficial,’ Patrick says. ‘If you’re exercising all day, every day, you’re going to die. You can’t constantly keep stressing your body without a recovery period, which is part of the reason why sleep is so important for recovery, you repair all this damage that you generated throughout the day.

I tend to push things to the extreme. I’m getting better with that now. But I have experienced, with myself, when I’ve sat in an ice bath for several minutes, I start to feel light headed. I shouldn’t be feeling light headed. That’s enough. I need to get out. The same with the sauna. Feeling uncomfortable is good.

You want to push a little bit past that comfort and feel a little uncomfortable. That’s important for some of the hormetic benefits. But you don’t want to faint. Also, never drink alcohol in the sauna.”

 

More Information

You can learn more about hyperthermic conditioning, cryotherapy, and cold water immersion via the free reports by Patrick.She also has a podcast where she interviews health professionals and scientists on a variety of topics related to health.

I regularly listen to her programs as they’re always packed with great and usable information. On her website, you can find many videos on a variety of topics in which she summarizes key information in clear and easy to understand layman’s terms. You can also sign up for her newsletter, in which she publishes longer, heavily referenced articles and special reports.

 

 

An Inside Look Into the Fish Industry Reveals Disturbing Facts That Could Threaten Your Health

Source

By Dr. Mercola

Nicolas Daniel’s documentary “Fillet-Oh-Fish” takes a critical look at the fish industry, featuring exclusive footage from fish farms and factories across the globe. Many still have a rather romanticized view of fishing, but when it comes to large-scale food production, the picture is actually rather grim.

Today’s fisheries are faced with a range of severe problems, from overfishing to chemical pollution and genetic mutation from toxic exposures. As noted by the producers of the film, “through intensive farming and global pollution, the flesh of the fish we eat has turned into a deadly chemical cocktail.”1

Despite that, the fish business is booming, in part due to efforts to keep the dirty underbelly of modern fisheries from public sight.

Aquaculture promotes itself as a sustainable solution to overfishing. But in reality, fish farms actually cause more problems than they solve. There’s really little difference, in terms of environmental pollution, between land-based feedlots and water-based ones.

Farmed Salmon — One of the Most Toxic Foods in the World?

The film starts off in Norway, looking at the chemicals used in fish farms. Kurt Oddekalv is a respected Norwegian environmental activist, and he believes salmon farming is a disaster both for the environment and for human health.

Below the salmon farms dotted across the Norwegian fjords, there’s a layer of waste some 15 meters high, teeming with bacteria, drugs, and pesticides. In short, the entire sea floor has been destroyed, and since the farms are located in open water, the pollution from these farms is in no way contained.

A salmon farm can hold upwards of 2 million salmon in a relatively small amount of space. These crowded conditions result in disease, which spreads rapidly among the stressed salmon.

According to Oddekalv, sea lice, Pancreas Disease(PD)2 and Infectious Salmon Anemia Virus (ISA) have spread all across Norway, yet consumers are not informed of these fish pandemics, and sale of these diseased fish continue unabated.

A number of dangerous pesticides are used in an effort to stave off disease-causing pests, one of which is known to have neurotoxic effects. Fish has always been considered a health food, but according to Oddekalv, today’s farmed salmon is one of the most toxic foods in the world!

Toxicology researcher Jerome Ruzzin has confirmed Oddekalv’s claims. He’s tested a number of different food groups sold in Norway for toxins, and indeed, farmed salmon contains the greatest amount of toxins of them all, and by an incredibly large margin.

Overall, farmed salmon is five times more toxic than any other food product tested. In animal feeding studies, mice fed farmed salmon grew obese, with thick layers of fat around their internal organs. They also developed diabetes.

Ruzzin notes that a theory gaining traction is that rising rates of obesity is related to the increasing number of toxins and pollutants we’re exposed to through our environment and food. In light of his own studies, Ruzzin has stopped eating farmed salmon.

Genetic Mutations and Other Crazy Facts

Besides keeping pests like sea lice in check, the pesticides used also affect the fish’s DNA, causing genetic mutations. Disturbing examples of deformed cod are shown in the film.

What’s even more disturbing is that, according to Oddekalv, about 50 percent of farmed cod are deformed in this fashion, and female cod that escape from farms are known to mate with wild cod, spreading the genetic mutations and deformities into the wild population.

Farmed salmon suffer less visible but equally disturbing mutations. The flesh of the farmed salmon is “brittle,” and breaks apart when bent — a highly abnormal feature.

The nutritional content is also wildly abnormal. Wild salmon contains about 5 to 7 percent fat, whereas the farmed variety can contain anywhere from 14.5 to 34 percent.

Many toxins accumulate most readily in fat, which means even when raised in similarly contaminated conditions, farmed salmon will contain far more toxins than wild.

Shockingly, research reveals that the most significant source of toxic exposure is not actually the pesticides or the antibiotics, but the dry pellet feed! Pollutants found in the fish feed include dioxins, PCBs, and a number of different drugs and chemicals.

What Makes the Fish Feed so Toxic?

So what’s wrong with the fish feed? Why is it so toxic? In one Norwegian fish pellet plant, the main ingredient turns out to be eel, used for their high protein and fat content, and other fatty fish from the Baltic Sea.

That’s where the problem begins, as the Baltic is highly polluted. Some of the fish used have toxic levels of pollutants, which then simply get incorporated into the feed pellets.

In Sweden, fish mongers are now required to warn patrons about the potential toxicity of Baltic fish. According to government recommendations, you should not eat fatty fish like herring more than once a week, and if you’re pregnant, fish from the Baltic should be avoided altogether.

Swedish Greenpeace activist Jan Isakson reveals some of the sources of all this pollution. Just outside of Stockholm, there’s a massive paper mill on the bank of the Baltic that generates toxic dioxins.

Nine other industrialized countries surrounding the Baltic Sea also dump their toxic waste into this closed body of water. Dioxins bind to fat, which is why herring, eel, and salmon are particularly vulnerable, and end up accumulating higher amounts than other fish.

As a result of being deemed unfit for human consumption, some of these fatty fish are now primarily used as fish food. In this way, toxicity in the farmed salmon is allowed to build up even higher than in the wild.

One of the Best Kept and Most Dangerous Secrets of the Fish Industry

But there’s yet another problem, and it stems from the manufacturing process of the pellets. The fatty fish are first cooked, resulting in two separate products: protein meal and oil. While the oil has high levels of dioxins and PCBs, the protein powder further adds to the toxicity of the end product.

To the protein powder, they add an “antioxidant” called ethoxyquin. According to the filmmaker, this is one of the best kept secrets of the fish food industry. Ethoxyquin was developed by Monsanto in the 1950s — as a pesticide. Its use is strictly regulated, so why is it being added to fish pellets?

A couple of years ago, a Swiss anti-fraud laboratory was surprised to find extremely high levels of ethoxyquin in farmed fish — some 10 to 20 times higher than the 50 mcg per kilo allowed in food in the European Union — and that discovery began to unravel the secret. Ethoxyquin was designed for use on fruits and vegetables, but the fish feed industry discovered another novel use for it — they add it to the feed to prevent the fats from oxidizing and going rancid.

However, the fish feed manufacturers never informed health authorities of their use of the chemical. As a result, the EU strictly regulates ethoxyquin levels in fruits, vegetables, and meat — there are even standards for kangaroos and reptiles — but not for the fish people consume. What’s more, the effects of this chemical on human health have never been established.

The one and only study ever done on ethoxyquin and human health was a thesis by Victoria Bohne, Ph.D. a former researcher in Norway who made a number of disturbing discoveries, including the fact that ethoxyquin can cross the blood brain barrier, and may have carcinogenic effects. Bohne, as many other researchers who have made unpopular findings, was pressured to leave her research job after attempts were made to falsify and downplay her findings.

Others have linked the secret use of ethoxyquin in Norwegian fish farming, and the lack of scientific investigation into its effects, to the Norwegian Minister of Fisheries and Coastal Affairs, Lisbeth Berg-Hansen, who also happens to be a major shareholder in a commercial salmon farm, and has held many high-ranking positions within the fishing industry.

The Rise of Panga Exploited Fish Consumption

In France, fish consumption has more than doubled in the past five decades, now surpassing consumption of both beef and chicken. To meet demand, fish is being imported from around the globe. Rarely will you find a fish caught off the coast of France. Nearly half of all fish sold in France is raised in fish farms. Lesser known and less expensive species have also been brought to market.

Panga, which is now one of the 10 most consumed fish in France, was relatively unknown a decade ago. Its low price has also made panga a top seller in the school system. The questions asked in the film are, how can this farmed fish be sold at such low prices, and what’s actually in these fish that children are now eating on a regular basis?

The investigation begins in southern Vietnam, where panga is part of the culinary tradition. However, behind this cultural image, there’s a more disturbing reality. Over the past 15 years, panga exports have become a major source of income for the region. In fact, 95 percent of the global production of panga comes from southern Vietnam, and this success has resulted in both environmental and human exploitation.

Farmed panga grow twice to four times as fast compared to those in the wild, allowing them to reach adult size in about six months. The fish are then harvested and processed, which includes washing the fillets in big vats filled with water and polyphosphates — chemical additives that facilitate freezing.

The chemical also allows the fish to soak up water, which artificially increases their weight. After this process, the fish lack both taste and odor, and will take on the flavor of whatever spices you add to it during cooking.

Environmental Pollution Poses Risks

Many panga farms are plagued with disease, courtesy of the polluted waters in which they’re raised. Mekong River, where many panga farms are located, is one of the most heavily polluted rivers in the world. In 2009, the World Wide Fund for Nature placed panga on their “red” list of products that pose a danger to environmental and human health.

Millions of Vietnamese households dump their waste directly into the Mekong River each day. Pesticides used in rice cultivation also migrate into this waterway. Green algae and bacteria release toxins into the water and reduce oxygen levels in the water, which adds further stress on the fish’s immune systems, making them more prone to disease.

To address disease, farmers add industrial quantities of drugs into their fish ponds, including a wide array of antibiotics. The side effect is drug resistance, which forces the farmers to keep increasing the dosages. The panga are not the only thing affected by this strategy, of course. Antibiotics spread through the river systems, are absorbed into the fish’s tissues and excreted through feces, which redistributes the drugs into the environment — and to those who eat the fish.

Are You Eating Fish, or Fish Waste?

Fish can be one of the healthiest foods you can eat, but in the industrial age you have to be ultra careful about choosing the right type of fish. If you needed another reason to avoid processed foods, watch this film to the end, where it describes how fish waste has become a “highly valued commodity” used in processed foods. At less than 15 cents per kilo, these fish heads and tails, and what little meat is left over after filleting, is a real profit maker.

Virtually nothing actually goes to waste anymore. Fish skins are recycled for use in the cosmetics industry. The remainder of the fish waste is washed and ground into a pulp, which is then used in prepared meals and pet food.

Since food manufacturers are not required to tell you their products contain fish pulp rather than actual fish fillet meat, this product offers a high profit margin for food manufacturers. One tipoff: if the product’s list of ingredients includes a fish without specifyingthat it’s made with fillet of fish, it’s usually made with fish waste pulp.

Fish fraud is also commonplace. Investigations have shown that 1 in 3 fish labels are false or misleading. Typically, an inexpensive fish is mislabeled as a more expensive one. Some farmed fish are also passed off as wild. Since traceability is more complex in the processed food industry, due to the mixing of ingredients, that’s where most of the fish fraud occurs. It’s somewhat more difficult to pass off fillets of fish as another species, although that also occurs.

Best Seafood Options: Wild Alaskan Salmon, Sardines and Anchovies

It’s become quite clear that fish farms are not a viable solution to overfishing. If anything, they’re making matters worse, destroying the marine ecosystem at a far more rapid clip to boot … So what’s the answer? Unfortunately, the vast majority of fish — even when wild caught — is too contaminated to eat on a frequent basis. Most major waterways in the world are contaminated with mercury, heavy metals, and chemicals like dioxins, PCBs, and other agricultural chemicals that wind up in the environment.

This is why, as a general rule, I no longer recommend getting your omega-3 requirements from fish. However, I do make two exceptions. One is authentic, wild-caught Alaskan sockeye salmon; the nutritional benefits of which I believe still outweigh any potential contamination.

The risk of sockeye accumulating high amounts of mercury and other toxins is reduced because of its short life cycle, which is only about three years. Additionally, bioaccumulation of toxins is also reduced by the fact that it doesn’t feed on other, already contaminated, fish.

Alaskan salmon is not allowed to be farmed, and is therefore always wild-caught. My favorite brand is Vital Choice Wild Seafood and Organics, which offers a nice variety of high-quality salmon products that test high for omega-3 fats and low for contaminants. Canned salmon labeled “Alaskan salmon” is a less expensive alternative to salmon fillets.

The second exception is smaller fish with short life cycles, which also tend to be better alternatives in terms of fat content, such as sardines and anchovies, so it’s a win-win situation — lower contamination risk and higher nutritional value. A general guideline is that the closer to the bottom of the food chain the fish is, the less contamination it will have accumulated. Just make sure they’re not from the Baltic Sea.

Other good choices include herring and fish roe (caviar), which is full of important phospholipids that nourish mitochondrial membranes.

Sources and References

Three new vaccine science videos released by the Health Ranger

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by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger

These three new videos shatter the utterly false myths being pushed by the fraudulent vaccine industry and its corporate-run junk science. For example, did you know that the recent mumps outbreak at Harvard took place among students who were already vaccinated?

So if vaccines work, then how did all those vaccinated students get the mumps? The answer is that mumps vaccines are medical fraud. They don’t work. They never did. This was all admitted by vaccine industry scientists in a False Claims Act document filed with the federal government. That same document stated that vaccine companies knew their vaccines didn’t work… and that the faked vaccines actually contributed to outbreaks of disease (which, of course, sells more vaccines that also don’t work!).

The entire mainstream media repeatedly and knowingly lies about vaccines as a matter of course. They are largely funded by pharmaceutical interests, and if the public ever learned just how shoddy the science really was behind vaccines, they might stop taking them altogether.

In these three videos, below, I explain the real story on vaccines as an independent research scientist, investigative journalist and compassionate human being who seeks to save lives from toxic poisoning. This is what you’ll never hear on CNN!

When it comes to vaccines, physician training is really just OBEDIENCE training

It’s not about being a good doctor anymore… it’s about being an obedient vaccine pusher who asks no questions but follows orders without hesitation. (h/t to sk8ter gurl user on Youtube, with their original video.)

Beware of anyone who says “the science is settled” on vaccines… they are LYING

If “vaccine science” is so solid, then why are they so afraid of people watching a documentary film called “VAXXED?”

The VACCINE HOLOCAUST explained by the Health Ranger

Yeah, it really is a modern-day medical holocaust… completely with “deniers” who ridiculously claim no children are ever harmed by vaccines…

More news on vaccine science

 

 

 

 

 

 

About the author:Mike Adams (aka the “Health Ranger“) is the founding editor of NaturalNews.com, the internet’s No. 1 natural health news website, now reaching 7 million unique readers a month.

In late 2013, Adams launched the Natural News Forensic Food Lab, where he conducts atomic spectroscopy research into food contaminants using high-end ICP-MS instrumentation. With this research, Adams has made numerous food safety breakthroughs such as revealing rice protein products imported from Asia to becontaminated with toxic heavy metals like lead, cadmium and tungsten. Adams was the first food science researcher to document high levels of tungsten in superfoods. He also discovered over 11 ppm lead in imported mangosteen powder, and led anindustry-wide voluntary agreement to limit heavy metals in rice protein products to low levels by July 1, 2015.

In addition to his lab work, Adams is also the (non-paid) executive director of the non-profit Consumer Wellness Center (CWC), an organization that redirects 100% of its donations receipts to grant programs that teach children and women how to grow their own food or vastly improve their nutrition. Click here to see some of the CWC success stories.

With a background in science and software technology, Adams is the original founder of the email newsletter technology company known as Arial Software. Using his technical experience combined with his love for natural health, Adams developed and deployed the content management system currently driving NaturalNews.com. He also engineered the high-level statistical algorithms that power SCIENCE.naturalnews.com, a massive research resource now featuring over 10 million scientific studies.

Adams is well known for his incredibly popular consumer activism video blowing the lid on fake blueberries used throughout the food supply. He has also exposed “strange fibers” found in Chicken McNuggets, fake academic credentials of so-called health “gurus,” dangerous “detox” products imported as battery acid and sold for oral consumption, fake acai berry scams, the Californiaraw milk raids, the vaccine research fraud revealed by industry whistleblowers and many other topics.

Peak Fasting — How Long Should You Intermittently Fast?

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By Dr. Mercola

Do you struggle with excess weight? Are you showing signs of insulin and leptin resistance? Is your fasting blood sugar above 100? If you answer yes to one or more of these questions, you may want to reconsider not only what you eat but when you eat as well.

One lifestyle factor that appears to be driving not only obesity but also many chronic disease processes is the fact that we eat too frequently.

Research reveals that a vast majority of Americans eat all day long.1 Most also consume a majority of their daily calories late in the evening, and this type of eating pattern is a recipe for weight gain and metabolic dysfunction.

The reason so many struggle with their weight (aside from eating processed foods that have been grossly altered from their natural state) is because they rarely, if ever, skip a meal.

As a result, their bodies have adapted to burning sugar as its primary fuel, which down-regulates enzymes that utilize and burn stored fat. In addition, our ancestors didn’t have access to food 24/7, and biologically your body simply isn’t designed to run optimally when continuously fed.

Biological Repair and Rejuvenation Occurs During Fasting

Research has confirmed that many biological repair and rejuvenation processes take place when there’s an absence of food, and this is another reason why all-day grazing triggers disease. Your body never has the time to clean out the garbage and regenerate.

When you go without food for a period of time, the resulting metabolic changes stimulate a natural cleansing process known as autophagy, or mitophagy in the case of mitochondrial autophagy, in which your body detoxifies and rids itself of damaged cells.

When you’re in constant “feast mode,” your body forgoes many of these benefits. That does not mean you need to (or should) starve yourself for extended periods of time though.

Simply cycling between periods of eating and fasting on a daily or weekly schedule has been shown to provide many of the same benefits as complete fasting, where you don’t eat for several days.

What’s so Great About Intermittent Fasting?

Intermittent fasting is a term that covers an array of different meal timing schedules. As a general rule, it involves cutting calories in whole or in part, either a couple of days a week, every other day, or even daily, as in the case of the scheduled eating regimen I prefer to use myself.

As noted by Time magazine, intermittent fasting is becoming increasingly popular, and for good reason — it works. And it works whether you’re trying to lose weight or simply improve biomarkers for optimal health.

But what exactly makes it so effective for weight loss when other calorie-cutting diets have such a high failure rate? As noted in the featured article:2

“The body converts food into glycogen — a form of energy that it can store for later use. Your body then squirrels away that glycogen in both fat cells and in your liver.

‘If you’re eating all day, the stores of glycogen in your liver are never depleted,’ [neuroscientist Mark Mattson, Ph.D.] says.

On the other hand, after about 12 hours without food your liver runs out of glycogen, at which point your body starts drawing energy from the glycogen stored in your fat cells.”

In a nutshell, your body was designed to: a) run on fat as its primary fuel, and b) cycle through periods of feast and famine. Today, most people do the complete opposite. They eat sugar and net carbs (total carbs minus fiber), which is virtually identical to sugar metabolically, all day long.

So, by mimicking the eating habits of our ancestors, who did not have access to food around the clock, you restore your body to a more natural state that allows a whole host of biochemical benefits to occur.

Fasting May Hold Key to Cancer and Dementia Prevention

Besides normalizing your weight, intermittent fasting is also one of the ways by which you can significantly boost mitochondrial health and energy efficiency, which is important for chronic disease prevention, thereby cutting your risk for health problems like heart disease and cancer.

Intermittent fasting can also have a very beneficial impact on your brain function, and may even hold the key to preventing Alzheimer’s disease.

Mark Mattson, Ph.D. has conducted animal studies showing that when mice, genetically engineered to develop Alzheimer’s, are put on an alternate day fasting diet, they develop Alzheimer’s around the age of 2 years, which in human terms is equivalent to being 90.

Normally, they develop dementia in half that time — around 1 year, equivalent to the age of 40 or 50 in humans. When he put them on a junk food diet, they developed Alzheimer’s around 9 months! Mattson’s research suggests that alternate day fasting can boost a protein known as brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) by anywhere from 50 to 400 percent, depending on the brain region.

BDNF activates brain stem cells to convert into new neurons. It also triggers other chemicals that promote neural health, and has been shown to protect brain cells from adverse changes associated with Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.

Which Intermittent Fasting Schedule Is Right for You?

There are several intermittent fasting schedules to choose from, and the “right” one for you is the one you will actually comply with. Here are a few of the most popular eating schedules. For even more fasting protocols, including ones that are specifically designed to be combined with exercise, please see this previous intermittent fasting article.

5-day fast In one recent experiment,3 people who fasted five consecutive days once a month for three months in a row saw improvements in biomarkers for cell regeneration. Risk factors for diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular disease, and aging also declined.

You do not abstain from food entirely during these days. On the first day, you eat about 1,000 to 1,100 calories, followed by 725 calories on the remaining four days. Your diet during these days should be primarily plant-based, low in carbohydrates and protein, and high in healthy fat.

Beware that it can be quite challenging to go a full five days with very little food, especially if you’ve never fasted before, so you may want to work your way up to this kind of schedule.

5:2 fast On the 5:2 plan, you cut your food down to one-fourth of your normal daily calories on the two fasting days of your choice (about 600 calories for men and about 500 for women), along with plenty of water and tea. On the other five days of the week, you can eat normally.
Alternate day fasting This program is exactly as it sounds: one day off, one day on. On fasting days, you restrict your eating to one meal of about 500 calories. On non-fasting days, you can eat normally.

When you include sleeping time, your fast can end up being as long as 32 to 36 hours. According to Krista Varady, Ph.D., author of “The Every-Other-Day Diet,” alternate day fasting can help you lose up to 2 lbs. per week.

Another benefit to alternate day fasting is that your body tends to adapt to the regularity of the program, whereas the randomness of the 5:2 plan can be more difficult to adjust to.4 In trials, about 90 percent of participants are able to stick to alternate day fasting, whereas the other 10 percent drop out within the first two weeks.

One caveat: more recent research5 shows that if you want to lose weight, you cannot binge on non-fasting days when you’re on an alternate day fasting plan, which is something you can typically do on the 5:2 plan. Exactly why is still unclear, but it may have to do with the fact that there’s less regularity in the pattern on the 5:2 plan.

Peak Fasting

Restrict daily eating to a six- to eight-hour window (the key here is to eat breakfast or dinner, but not both)

Here you avoid eating for 13 to 18 hours. This strategy is more aggressive and, as a result, people tend to see results sooner. The specific time is based on your blood sugar readings. This is my personal preference as it’s really easy to comply with once your body has shifted over from burning sugar to burning fat as its primary fuel.

At that point, you cease to experience frequent hunger pangs, and can go for hours without a dip in energy. Fat, being a slow-burning fuel, is what allows you to keep going without suffering from the dramatic energy crashes associated with sugar.

In order to make this schedule work, you need to skip either breakfast or dinner. Which one to omit is up to you. However, if you chose to eat dinner, it’s important to avoid eating for at least three hours before going to bed.

The rationale for this recommendation has to do with the way your body produces energy. When you’re sleeping, your body needs the least amount of energy, and if you feed it at a time when energy is not needed you end up creating a situation in which your mitochondria creates excessive amounts of damaging free radicals.

I have recently appreciated that this is another important factor that can help optimize your mitochondrial function and prevent cellular damage from occurring.

What You Eat Still Matters

While some intermittent fasting programs claim you can binge on whatever you want on non-fasting days, I strongly recommend paying attention to the quality of your food regardless of the program you choose.

Since you’re eating less, you’ll want to make sure you’re getting high-quality nutrients from your food. Healthy fats are especially important, as intermittent fasting pushes your body to switch over into fat burning mode. If you feel tired and sluggish, it may be a sign you need to increase the amount of healthy fat in your diet.

Cutting net carbs (total carbs minus fiber) is equally important. Fructose is particularly troublesome as it activates a key enzyme, fructokinase, which in turn activates another enzyme that causes your cells to accumulate fat and resist letting any of it go. If you’re overweight, insulin-resistant, or diabetic, reducing sugar consumption is really key. So, as a general rule — whether you’re fasting or not, and regardless of the fasting schedule you’re on — I believe it’s important to eat a diet that is:

  • High in healthy fats. Many will benefit from 50 to 85 percent of their daily calories in the form of healthy fat from avocados, organic grass-fed butter, pastured egg yolks, coconut oil, and raw nuts such as macadamia, pecans, and pine nuts.
  • Moderate amounts of high-quality protein from organically raised, grass-fed or pastured animals. Most will likely not need more than 40 to 80 grams of protein per day. (I recommend limiting protein to one-half gram of protein per pound of lean body mass.)
  • Unrestricted amounts of fresh low net carb vegetables, ideally organic.

Peak Fasting — How Long Should You Fast?

Besides when and what to eat, another common question relates to duration. Just how long must you continue intermittently fasting? While some embrace it as a lifestyle (and this tends to be particularly true of those who restrict their daily eating to a specific window of time), it’s not something you have to do for the rest of your life. I don’t recommend any of the other types of fasting as they have major shortcomings from a metabolic perspective that I will discuss in my new book on this topic.

As a general rule, I recommend a new type of intermittent fasting that I call Peak Fasting, which is done every day rather than a few days a week. However you can certainly cycle in off days due to schedule or social commitments. The key is flexibility. But if circumstances allow, seek to do it every day. The process is simple.

Stop eating three hours before bed and don’t have your first meal for at least 13 hours. Measure your blood sugar at that time. You can do this every half hour, and when it starts to dramatically rise, this is an indication that you need to break your fast and eat food.

Why? Because suddenly rising blood sugar when you haven’t eaten is a sign that glucogenesis is setting in. By definition, glucogenesis refers to the production of glucose from a nonglucose precursor, such as protein. Once your body starts converting protein to glucose, you’re breaking down your lean muscle mass, and this is NOT healthy by any means.

This is also why I strongly recommend avoiding longer complete fasts. Research shows you can lose about ¼ pound of muscle mass per day if you fast for two days or longer! If you reach 16 to 18 hours and your blood sugar still hasn’t spiked, feel free to eat if you want to.

If you’re overweight and/or have symptoms of insulin and leptin resistance, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or full-blown type 2 diabetes, continue intermittent fasting until your insulin/leptin resistance improves, and your weight, blood pressure, cholesterol ratios, or diabetes normalizes. As an example, if you need to lose 50 pounds, you’re looking at about six months or so of intermittent fasting, after which you can revert to eating more regularly.

After that, all you need is a “maintenance program.” Keep track of your markers, and if they start sliding, go back on the fasting program of your choice again for a number of weeks or months. Alternatively, you could intermittently fast for say one month, twice a year, as a form of maintenance.

Remember over half of the U.S. population is either diabetic or prediabetic, so measuring blood glucose is a powerful and cheap test. You can purchase the Bayer meter6 on Amazon for $7 and the strips are less than 25 cents apiece. I have tested many meters and this is the clear value winner. For less than $1 or $2, you can accurately and simply identify the ideal time of your intermittent fast.

If you are new to fasting, it may take some time to work up to 13 hours, but once you start activating your fat burning system you will easily achieve this. The most effective way is to limit your net carbs (total carbs-fiber) to under 40 grams per day and do not exceed more than 1 gram of protein per kilogram of lean body mass.

Tips for Making It Through the Transition Period

The toughest part of any intermittent fasting plan is getting through the initial transition, which can take anywhere from 7 to 10 days. Maybe even longer for some people, depending on how insulin-resistant you are, and other factors, like your weight, blood pressure and cholesterol levels, and if you are not consistent with the fasting and wind up cheating.

About 10 percent of people will report headaches as a side effect when they first start fasting, but the biggest complaint is hunger. It may be helpful to remember that part of why you’re craving food is because your body has not yet made the switch from burning sugar to burning fat as its primary fuel. As long as you’re running on sugar, which is a fast-burning fuel, frequent hunger pangs will be the norm. Fat is far more satisfying, as it’s a much slower-burning fuel.

Remember, a diet high in carbohydrates severely inhibits your body’s ability to produce lipase and use fat as an energy source. Lipase is inhibited because of high insulin levels, and your insulin rises in response to eating foods high in carbohydrates, so it’s important to replace carbs with healthy fat in order to successfully make that metabolic switch-over and become an efficient fat burner.

Another factor that can trip you up during the transition period is purely psychological. If you’re used to grazing throughout the day, it may take some time to break the habit. One trick is to drink more water. Oftentimes people mistake thirst for hunger.

Peak Fasting May Be the U-Turn You’ve Been Looking For

The vast majority of Americans are overweight and most would therefore benefit from intermittent fasting for a period of time. (Adrenal-fatigued individuals are perhaps an exception to this rule). When done correctly, you will inevitably lose weight and your insulin and leptin receptor sensitivity will be optimized, which is really important for optimal health. Fasting also:

  • Decreases the accumulation of oxidative radicals in your cells, thereby preventing oxidative damage to cellular proteins, lipids, and nucleic acids associated with aging and disease.
  • Raises human growth hormone. Research7 has shown fasting can raise HGH by as much as 1,300 percent in women, and 2,000 percent in men, which plays an important part in health, fitness and slowing the aging process. HGH is also a fat-burning hormone, which is another reason why fasting is so effective for weight loss.
  • Inhibits the mTOR pathway, which plays an important part in driving the aging process by increasing mitophagy and mitochondrial biogenesis.

If you decide to attempt intermittent fasting, be sure to pay careful attention to hypoglycemic signs and symptoms, and if you suspect that you’re crashing, make sure to eat something, like coconut oil. I do not recommend fasting if you’re living with chronic stress (adrenal fatigue), or have cortisol dysregulation. Pregnant or nursing mothers should also avoid fasting, as your baby needs plenty of nutrients during and after birth, and there’s no research supporting fasting during this important time.

Sources and References

Taxpayer Money Used to Promote Biotech Propaganda

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By Dr. Mercola

A few weeks ago I wrote about how when a now retired University of Illinois’ professor named Bruce Chassy received money from the U.S. State Department to produce informational videos on genetically modified organisms (GMOs), he collaborated with Monsanto on the content.

Alternet also recently published an article detailing the conflicts of interest between Chassy and Monsanto, and how the professor spent years supporting Monsanto’s agenda without disclosing his financial ties to the company.1

But if you think an “independent” public university professor taking government money to produce propaganda for a private company is bad, consider this:

The new spending bill2,3,4 actually calls for $3 million to be allocated for consumer education and outreach to “promote understanding and acceptance of” biotechnology.

Your Money Is Being Spent to Promote Industry Propaganda

That’s right, not only is the government and the food and chemical technology industries fighting tooth and nail to prevent GMO labeling, your hard-earned tax dollars will also be spent on industry propaganda to “assure” you that genetically engineered (GE) foods are of no concern.

This joint effort by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is an outrage.

Instead of safeguarding environmental and human health, these agencies are simply supporting and promoting the industry agenda, regardless of the cost to society. Indeed, as noted in another recent article, the USDA has come under increasing scrutiny following charges of harassment and censorship of its own scientists.

Tell Vermont Lawmakers to Uphold GMO Labeling Law

The Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) and its ally, the Vermont Retail and Grocers Association, are also pressuring Vermont lawmakers to add a rider to the state’s must-pass budget bill.

The rider would delay the deadline for compliance with the state’s GMO labeling law, set to take effect July 1, pushing the deadline all the way back to January 1, 2018.

Clearly, this move has but one purpose, and that is to give these parties more time to convince Congress to implement federal regulations to preempt all state labeling laws, thereby preventing Vermont’s law from ever taking effect. As noted by the Organic Consumers Association:

“Vermont voters and lawmakers overwhelmingly supported Act 120, a law to require GMO labels. The governor signed it into law May 8, 2014. Monsanto and the GMA promptly sued to overturn it, but so far, the courts have refused to block the law…

Monsanto and the GMA have failed to convince enough U.S. Senators to preempt Vermont’s law. They’ve failed to get the votes they need for their DARK — Deny Americans the Right to Know — Act.

So they’re coming in the back door, using the Vermont Senate appropriations process — to delay the law, and buy themselves more time…

Vermont lawmakers claim they can’t hold up the state budget…just to protect the July 1 GMO labeling deadline. That’s just wrong. Vermont voters have waited long enough…Food companies have had ample time to prepare GMO labels…

Vermont lawmakers owe it to their constituents to uphold Vermont’s law and enforce it. Anything less is just pandering to big corporate interests.”

We’re now extremely pressed for time, so please, even if you don’t live in Vermont, please CALL VERMONT LAWMAKERS TODAY at 802-828-2228 or 1-800-322-5616. Tell them to keep Vermont’s GMO labeling law as is, and that consumers in all 50 states are counting on them to protect our right to know!

Several Companies Have Already Announced They Will Comply With Vermont Labeling Law

Campbell’s was the first company to announce it is ready to comply with the Vermont law and will begin labeling GMOs. Contrary to GMA scare tactic claims, the company also assured consumers the new label would not result in higher prices.5

Mars, Inc.6 Kellogg Company,7 ConAgra,8 and General Mills9 have since followed suit, announcing they too will comply by labeling all of their foods sold across the U.S. General Mills has also launched an online search tool10 to help you determine which of their products contain GMOs.

These companies are proof positive that the food industry does not need more time to comply, and that the Vermont law should go into effect as planned, without delay.

Food companies have had nearly two years to prepare for GMO labels, and the Vermont Attorney General has already announced that fines will not be levied against non-compliant companies until January 1, 2017.

That gives companies that are lagging behind a 6-month grace period to update their labels, during which time right of action suits cannot be filed against them. So truly, there’s only one reason to push for a delay, and that’s to get the law nullified by some other piece of legislation along the way.

Pro-GMO Senators in Weaker Position Than Ever Before

The Vermont labeling bill passed 28-2. Now, the senators who lost want to modify the bill before it goes into effect, threatening to open the bill up to a fight on the floor unless the deadline gets extended to 2018. But even if that would occur, they hardly stand a chance of winning.

This is because, they’re actually in a weaker position today than when the bill was originally passed two years ago.

For starters, in March 2015 the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), which is the research arm of the World Health Organization (WHO), determined that glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide, is a Class 2A “probable human carcinogen.”

This determination was based on evidence showing the popular weed killer can cause non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and lung cancer in humans, along with “convincing evidence” it can also cause cancer in animals.

We also know that glyphosate use has dramatically increased as a direct result of GE crops, and that alone is a significant health concern that cannot be overlooked when discussing GMOs and GMO labeling.

Glyphosate Toxicity Is an Important Part of the GMO Labeling Discussion

Before GE crops, glyphosate was used sparingly, as it kills any plant it touches. This meant farmers could not apply it near their crops, lest they risk killing off their crops as well. It was only used where farmers wanted to kill all vegetation, such as between the rows in orchards or in industrial yards.

This all changed in 1996, when Monsanto’s so-called “Roundup Ready,” GE glyphosate-tolerant crops were introduced.

Since these crops are impervious to glyphosate’s toxic effects, farmers can spray the chemical onto their crops with abandon. And due to mounting weed resistance, that’s exactly what they’ve had to do. Since 1996, glyphosate use has risen nearly 15-fold.11

Since glyphosate was introduced in 1974, 1.8 million tons have been applied to U.S. fields, and two-thirds of that volume has been sprayed in the last 10 years.

Monsanto has also successfully promoted the use of Roundup on non-GE crops as a desiccant.12 Basically, the chemical is sprayed on crops right before harvesting to dry out the crop and allow farmers to harvest earlier — a technique that results in a higher profits as earlier harvest yields higher prices.

Contrary to the U.S., the EU Parliament is calling on the Commission to severely restrict the permitted usage of glyphosate, and to ban pre-harvest dessication in order to protect human health.13 Glyphosate use is in fact so excessive at this point that even organic farms are now plagued by glyphosate residues in their produce, even though it’s not actually sprayed on their farms. It drifts over from other farms.

In Vermont, herbicide use on corn increased by 39 percent since the advent of GE corn. Nitrogen fertilizer use has also increased by 17 percent. Moreover, nearly all — 99.4 percent to be exact — of the chemicals used on GE corn grown in Vermont are suspected hormone disruptors, capable of promoting cancer and birth defects.

All of these facts have a bearing on the GMO discussion, and add weight to the call for clear labeling. Vermont is the first state to pass a no-strings-attached GMO labeling law, and it needs to be implemented as planned.

Farm Subsidies Only Make the Rich Richer

While millions of taxpayer dollars will be spent to convince you of the merits of GMOs — which also means they’re promoting processed foods, since that’s where the majority of GE crops end up — little is being done to promote the growing of healthier foods like fresh fruits and vegetables on small farms.

A recent report14 by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) points out that no less than 50 American billionaires received at least $6.3 million in commodity support payments from farm bill programs between 1995 and 2014.

Among them are David Rockefeller Sr., Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker, Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, and Charles Schwab. According to the EWG, “these fat cats likely received even more subsidies through the federal crop insurance program… On average, taxpayers cover 62 percent of the cost of crop insurance premiums…

Of the 50 billionaires, 46 grow corn, soybeans, sorghum, cotton, rice and barley – commodities that are eligible for both traditional farm subsidies and crop insurance subsidies. Only two of the billionaires exclusively raise livestock, which aren’t eligible for subsidies but qualify for disaster assistance…”

In short, your tax dollars are spent to promote a dietary trend that leads to diabetes, heart disease and cancer, and now they will spend another $3 million to further the completely biased and scientifically unsupported idea that GMOs are safe and beneficial. Talk about misappropriation of funds! So what can you do? The greatest leverage we have as individuals is to vote for the system we want with every purchase.

Boycott GMA Members

For the past three years, there’s been an ongoing call to boycott GMA members  until they cancel their membership, and if you haven’t done so before, I urge you to consider getting serious about boycotting these traitor brands now.

The GMA has led the industry charge to undermine your right to know about GMOs, and they’ve even resorted to illegal measures to keep you in the dark. So really, by being members of the GMA, they are affiliated with a criminal element that destroys their reputation and severely undermines their integrity.

The Organic Consumers Association (OCA) has created a smart phone application called Buycott, which has already been downloaded by almost half a million people, to step up the boycott against GMA member brands.

The app also helps you determine ethical brands that deserve your patronage. If you don’t have a smartphone, or if you don’t want to use your smart phone in the grocery store, it’s even simpler. Don’t buy any processed food or beverage, or any food whatsoever unless it has one or more of these labels:

  • “USDA 100 percent Organic”
  • “100 percent grass-fed”
  • “Non-GMO Verified”

North Carolina Law Silences ALL Whistleblowers

The food and agricultural industries have created a trend that now severely threatens human health, which is ironic considering food is the most important cornerstone for a healthy life. Everywhere you turn these industries are lobbying for more relaxed safety regulations that will allow them to conduct business in pretty much any which way they want.

In addition to fighting against GMO labeling and stricter controls on toxic agricultural chemicals, pushing for so called “ag-gag” laws, which ban undercover recordings on farms, is another example.

Oftentimes, such tactics is the only way to reveal the worst offenders, which benefits society at large. Now, North Carolina has taken matters a giant step further. As of January 1, 2016, no one is allowed to tape malfeasance or wrong-doing anywhere, at anyworkplace, including nursing homes, day care centers, and veteran care facilities. As reported by the New York Times:15

“Anyone who violates the law — say, by secretly taping abuses of elderly patients or farm animals and then sharing the recording with the media or an advocacy group — can be sued by business owners for bad publicity and be required to pay a fine of $5,000 for each day that person is gathering information or recording without authorization.

The law originally singled out factory-farm exposés, but after it twice failed to pass in the face of resistance from animal-rights activists, lawmakers succeeded in pushing through a version that covered everyone equally. Gov. Pat McCrory, who said he was concerned the law would make it harder for employees to report illegal activity, vetoed the measure, but the state’s legislature, the General Assembly, overrode the veto last June.”

The only way whistleblowers can expose abuses at the workplace is by reporting it directly to a superior and/or state authority. Alas, such reporting rarely if ever actually becomes public knowledge, and that’s exactly what the law aims to achieve. “As one of its sponsors told a Senate committee last year, the whole point is to stop people who would go ‘running out to a news outlet,’” NYT writes.

Fight for Your Right to Know

A coalition of organizations, including People for the Ethical Treatment for Animals, Center for Food Safety, the Animal Legal Defense Fund, Farm Sanctuary, Food & Water Watch, and the Government Accountability Project, have argued that this North Carolina law is a clear violation of the constitutional freedoms of speech and the press. They filed a federal lawsuit16 to have the law overturned in January, shortly after its passing. As noted by the New York Times:

“They have precedent to back them up, in the form of a decision by a federal judge last August that struck down an ag-gag law in Idaho on free-speech grounds, the first such ruling in the country. Activists who pose as employees to gain access to farming operations, the judge wrote, “actually advance core First Amendment values by exposing misconduct to the public eye and facilitating dialogue on issues of considerable public interest.”

Indeed, people rely on activists and responsible journalists to expose abuse and misconduct, regardless of who’s doing it, or where it occurs. How else are we to be made aware of these problems? We also rely on journalists and experts to truthfully and accurately relay information that is of importance to our health and well-being. This absolutely includes GMOs and other agricultural practices. Yet again and again, we see how the media is being manipulated to parrot industry PR.

“The secrecy promoted by ag-gag laws should have no place in American society,” the New York Times writes. And I would say that secrecy about food — its ingredients and how it’s made — has no place in American society either. Any responsible company should welcome third-party scrutiny, to affirm the quality and benefits of its products.

The fact that so many food companies are spending millions of dollars to prevent consumers from knowing whether a product contains GMOs or not is a clear sign they know they’re selling something inherently questionable.

They know, or at least suspect, that their ingredients do not meet consumer expectations. There’s really no other reason to go so far as to break laws and violate human and constitutional freedoms to prevent people from knowing what their food is made of! If you agree, then do something about it — boycott the traitor brands. No amount of complaining will be as effective as vanishing sales to encourage a company to do the right thing.

As for what you can do right this moment, please remember to call Vermont lawmakers TODAY — even if you don’t live there. The two numbers you can use are: 802-828-2228 and 1-800-322-5616. Tell them to NOT make any amendments to Vermont’s GMO labeling law, because consumers in all 50 states are counting on them to protect our right to know.

What You Need to Know About GMOs

Genetically modified organisms (GMOs), or genetically “engineered” (GE) foods, are live organisms whose genetic components have been artificially manipulated in a laboratory setting through creating unstable combinations of plant, animal, bacteria, and even viral genes that do not occur in nature or through traditional crossbreeding methods.

GMO proponents claim that genetic engineering is “safe and beneficial,” and that it advances the agricultural industry. They also say that GMOs help ensure the global food supply and sustainability. But is there any truth to these claims? I believe not. For years, I’ve stated the belief that GMOs pose one of the greatest threats to life on the planet. Genetic engineering is NOT the safe and beneficial technology that it is touted to be.

The FDA cleared the way for GE (Genetically Engineered) Atlantic salmon to be farmed for human consumption. Thanks to added language in the federal spending bill, the product will require special labeling so at least consumers will have the ability to identify the GE salmon in stores. However, it’s imperative ALL GE foods be labeled, which is currently still being denied.

 

The FDA is threatening the existence of our food supply. We have to start taking action now. I urge you to share this article with friends and family. If we act together, we can make a difference and put an end to the absurdity.

QR Codes Are NOT an Adequate Substitute for Package Labels

The biotech industry is trying to push the QR code as an answer for consumer concerns about GE foods. QR stands for Quick Response, and the code can be scanned and read by smart phones and other QR readers.

The code brings you to a product website that provides further details about the product. The video below shows you why this is not an ideal solution. There’s nothing forcing companies to declare GMOs on their website. On the contrary, GE foods are allowed to be promoted as “natural,” which further adds to the confusion.

 

These so-called “Smart Labels” hardly improve access to information. Instead, by making finding the truth time-consuming and cumbersome, food makers can be assured that most Americans will remain ignorant about the presence of GMOs in their products. Besides, everyone has a right to know what’s in the food. You shouldn’t have to own a smartphone to obtain this information.

Vermont’s mandatory labeling law is scheduled to go into effect July 1. Now, Monsanto is going with the only strategy it has left to block it — a Senate version of H.R.1599, also referred to as the DARK (Denying Americans the Right to Know) Act. Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan) introduced the bill, which would preempt Vermont’s GMO labeling law, and replace state mandatory labeling laws with a federal voluntary labeling plan.

Fortunately, on March 16, the Senate rejected the bill, falling far short of the 60 votes it needed in its favor to pass. This is great news, but though the DARK Act was defeated, it’s not over yet.

Roberts said he would still work to find another way to preempt the law, and majority leader Mitch McConnell changed his vote from YES to NO for procedural reasons. This allows him to bring up the bill again later if a compromise is created, and the creation of such a compromise is certainly already underway.

Vermont’s law is set to take effect on July 1. It’s imperative you take action now by contacting your senators. Ask them to oppose any compromise that would block or delay Vermont’s labeling law. It’s critical that we flood Senators’ phone lines — it’s now or never for GMO labeling.

Contact your senators

Non-GMO Food Resources by Country

If you are searching for non-GMO foods, here is a list of trusted sites you can visit.

Sources and References

 

Robert De Niro Enters the Vaccine Safety Battle

Source

By Dr. Mercola

Can vaccines trigger autism? This is the topic of the film “Vaxxed”, which was originally scheduled to be shown at the Tribeca Film Festival, but was pulled from the lineup on March 26.

The decision has created so much blowback and publicity that whoever was pushing for its removal may have cause to regret it, because it has given the film a much higher public profile than if it had simply been screened as scheduled.

The Tribeca Film Festival was started by Oscar-winning actor Robert De Niro and producer Jane Rosenthal in 2001 in an effort to revitalize lower Manhattan after the 9/11 attacks.

Strange as it may seem, according to Rosenthal, it was primarily other filmmakers that were threatening to pull their films out of the prestigious festival unless “Vaxxed” was removed. De Niro says he will look into who lodged the complaints, and why.

De Niro Brings Vaccine Safety Into the Limelight

While De Niro felt pressured to pull the film, he makes it clear it’s a film people need to see, noting there are many issues relating to the way the CDC evaluates and monitors the safety of vaccines that are not being spoken about openly — and they should.1

De Niro has an 18-year-old son who is autistic, and he admits he has concerns about vaccines and autism. “There is a link,” he says, and draws a parallel between people who have severe, even fatal, reactions to penicillin. De Niro points out that the same might be true for some people who react to vaccines.

He also makes the point that everyone really should have the choice whether or not to vaccinate their children.

Interestingly, while De Niro called for more discussion and more research into the safety of vaccines, Rosenthal appeared openly uncomfortable about the entire topic when she and De Niro were originally interviewed on NBC’s “Today Show” on Apr. 132 and even more uncomfortable when she and De Niro appeared in a follow-up interview on the “Today Show” on Apr. 18.3

One of the potential reasons for her discomfort could be related to the fact that her ex-husband, Craig Hatkoff, is a board member of the NYU Child Study Center, which is involved with the research and treatment of child psychiatric disorders. As noted by journalist Jon Rappoport:4

“The NYU Center would never, ever, in a million years imagine that vaccines could cause autism … A film that claims to show a link between the MMR vaccine and autism would be a hideous affront to the NYU Child Study Center, where Craig Hatkoff, co-founder of the Tribeca Film Festival, sits on the Board.”

Rosenthal’s sister, Pamela Rollins, Ph.D. is also deeply involved in the field of autism, and is a member of the Texas Council for Autism.5 The conventional view is that whatever autism is caused by, it’s NOT caused by a medical intervention like vaccines, and to suggest that it might be related simply isn’t permitted.

Organic Consumers Association (OCA) has created a petition to encourage Robert De Niro to continue seeking the truth about vaccines. Click the button below to sign the petition.

Vaccine Shills Coming Out of the Woodwork

A number of industry shills have already written derogatory articles about “Vaxxed.” This includes Dr. Paul Offit, whose article6 places the focus squarely on Andrew Wakefield, the director of the film.

Taking aim, Offit makes sure Wakefield’s character and qualifications are brought into question in order to try to discredit the information in the film.

No surprises there, as character assassination is part of Offit’s modus operandi — regardless of whether he’s got his facts straight or not. Offit does not have a good track record for being accurate in his assessment of the facts.

In at least one case, a newspaper was forced to issue a correction, noting that Offit’s disparaging statements about CBS News Investigative Correspondent Sharyl Attkisson (who had written a report critical of vaccines) were actually found to be wholly unsubstantiated and/or false.7

The fact of the matter is, anytime you hear or read terms like debunked, discredited, quack, conspiracy theorist, the science is settled, the debate is settled, the scientific consensus agrees, or the poison is in the dose, you can be more or less assured you’re reading agenda-driven propaganda.

The same can be said for anyone relying on Offit as the sole voice of what is true and what is not true about vaccine safety.

There are many respectable researchers out there who are well-qualified to speak about vaccine science, and I have interviewed a number of them. And contrary to what Offit proclaims, the science is far from conclusive when it comes to safety.

Science on Vaccines Is Nowhere Near Settled

Science has shown that when you overuse antibiotics, antibiotic resistance develops. So what is the science of mass vaccination with multiple vaccines? The truth is the science is nowhere near “settled” when it comes to the potential long-term risks of mass vaccination.

Moreover, vaccines are clearly not as effective as previously thought. For example, recurring outbreaks of whooping cough (pertussis) have been linked to vaccine failure, not lack of vaccination. Most recently, 56 people contracted whooping cough in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania and every single one of them was vaccinated.8

If you’re like most people, you probably thought vaccines the government recommends have been scientifically proven effective.

But every year we hear about many vaccines besides whooping cough failing, including mumps, measles and chicken pox — with a majority of the outbreaks again being among fully vaccinated people. So if the science isn’t settled when it comes to effectiveness, perhaps it isn’t so settled when it comes to safety.

Just last year, researchers made the remarkable discovery that the brain is actually directly connected to the immune system via previously unknown vessels.9

According to researchers, the discovery of these new vessels has “enormous implications for every neurological disease with an immune component,” and that certainly would include autism.

So just how does vaccination affect this system? Anyone who claims we have the answer is either uninformed or lying, as up until last year we didn’t even know the brain and immune system were linked!

Every year we make new discoveries about how the body works, yet we’re to believe that everything there is to know about how vaccines affect human biology was discovered decades ago?

Did Mass Vaccination Eradicate Measles in the US?

The day after De Niro’s appearance on NBC’s Today Show, the network issued a follow-up report to counter some of the statements and questions De Niro had brought up.10 For example, they claim that mass vaccination eradicated measles in the U.S. in 2000. Yet in 2014 it reemerged with 667 documented cases, and in 2015 there were 189 cases. According to the CDC, “the majority of patients were unvaccinated,” NBC reports.

Here are some facts they didn’t tell you: according to the CDC, no one has died from acute measles in the U.S. since 2003. Meanwhile, the MedAlerts database reveals 98 deaths following MMR or MMRV vaccinations occurred between 2003 and 2015. In addition to that, there were 694 reports of MMR or MMRV vaccinations causing disability in that time frame.

Considering the fact that less than 10 percent of vaccine adverse events are ever reported to VAERS, the actual number of measles vaccine-related deaths and disabilities that have occurred since 2003 could be as many as 980 deaths and 6,940 disabilities.

According to NBC: “While no drug or treatment is 100 percent safe, they say vaccines are far, far safer than the diseases they prevent.” Considering these statistics, would you agree with the assertion that the MMR vaccine is “far, far safer” than the measles?

Ironically, it seems NBC did exactly what De Niro objected to in the first place — they downplayed the risks, casually tossing out a few reassuring statements, completely ignoring statistics such as the fact that anywhere from 98 to 980 kids died following measles vaccination compared to none from the actual disease. And that’s how you know you’re listening to propaganda.

Do Studies ‘Conclusively Show’ There’s No Link Between Vaccines and Autism?

The NBC also made sure to note that while parents are “looking for answers,” studies have “conclusively shown” there’s no link between vaccines and autism. That sounds all good and well, but just because a statement is repeated does not make it true. I’ve interviewed a number of health and vaccine experts and researchers over the years, and the consensus among them is that safety studies are clearly lacking. As noted by board-certified pediatrician Dr. Lawrence Palevsky:

“… [T]hey are not following children long enough to know whether in three months, six months, three years, six years, or 10 years, there could be some autoimmune antibody or some immune challenge that happens to the body that lingers or that just sits there as a genotypic effect.

There’s a change in the genetics, there’s a change in the DNA, that doesn’t necessarily manifest itself until years later because of other stressors, perhaps even from another vaccine that comes years later. None of those studies have been done, so I don’t know how you can say that vaccines are safe.

… We’re not looking at the micro-molecular levels to see, ‘OK, was there an autoimmune antibody produced? Were there other inflammatory markers produced? Where did those markers manifest? Did they stay in the body? Did they manifest into clinical symptoms? How are they relevant?’ None of that science is being done. But we’re just saying that vaccines are safe because we’ve been doing it for so long. And anyone with a good scientific mind would say that’s not adequate.”

There are biological, genetic, and environmental differences among us, and that is why some of us get an MMR shot or experience measles and do not suffer complications while others do suffer complications and are brain injured or die.

Doctors cannot predict ahead of time who will be harmed by a vaccine or an infectious disease, and they cannot guarantee that those who have been vaccinated will not be infected or transmit infection. These are important points that are typically not shared with parents in the decision-making process regarding vaccination.

Even the studies that have been done are not nearly long enough to show what the long-term implications of vaccinations might be.

As mentioned earlier, we now also have brand new information regarding the connection between the brain and the immune system; a connection that may very well change the way we need to study vaccines and their impact on both brain and immune function. Clearly, De Niro is entirely correct when he says it’s a complicated matter, and that there are still many questions that need to be answered.

Do Vaccines Deserve Their ‘Safety Halo’?

Our genome is comprised of between 5 and 8 percent viral DNA, in what I consider to be a component of synergistic adaption with our environment. Microbial signaling plays a role that we still do not fully understand, yet our federal policies place a halo over all drugs called “vaccines.” The assumption is that we understand everything that needs to be understood about them, and that without them we’d be worse off. But where’s the proof? As noted by Rappoport:11

“[M]ajor media won’t reveal medically-caused death numbers … So we begin with a few citations … Journal of the American Medical Association; author, Dr. Barbara Starfield, revered public health expert at the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health;‘Is US health really the best in the world?Starfield reported that the US medical system kills 225,000 Americans a year; 106,000 as a result of FDA-approved medical drugs … Extrapolate the numbers to a decade: that’s 2.25 million deaths…

BMJ June 7, 201212… Lenzer refers to a report by the Institute for Safe Medication Practices: ‘It calculated that in 2011 prescription drugs were associated with two to four million people in the US experiencing ‘serious, disabling, or fatal injuries, including 128,000 deaths.” The report called this ‘one of the most significant perils to humans resulting from human activity.’

…The FDA knows and it isn’t saying anything about it, because the FDA certifies, as safe and effective, all the medical drugs that are routinely maiming and killing Americans …”

If other drugs cause well over 100,000 deaths a year, where’s the evidence to show vaccines don’t have a similar track record? The reason why the media refuses to discuss these safety issues is because their pharmaceutical advertisers have the ability to punish them financially. But there’s also the overarching issue of credibility. If these statistics were widely known and recognized, who would accept any assurance of drug safety anymore? As Rappoport notes, it would sound something like this:

“Well, the system I represent kills 2.25 million people per decade, and maims between 20 and 40 million more people per decade, but I want to assure you this vaccine presents no problems at all. It’s incredibly safe’ … Every single pronouncement, on any subject, issued via the medical cartel’s Ministry of Truth would fall on disbelieving ears, and only increase general outrage.”

 

The Fight for Improved Vaccine Safety Continues

The fact of the matter is, there’s still a lot we do not know when it comes to vaccines and their effects. Our knowledge is still very limited when it comes to the microbial world, as well as our own immune system.

To protect the vaccine program and the fantastic profits generated from it, any and all “cracks in the wall” must therefore be sealed, and the primary way this is done is by way of censoring, ridicule, and character assassination. They want mandatory vaccines from cradle to grave, and in order to implement that, all dissenters must be destroyed.

In the case of De Niro, they may have met their match, as he’s not one to be intimidated and dismissed so easily — although a number of industry “bobble heads” have already tried to make it seem as though he’s just another confused parent of an autistic child looking for a scapegoat.

They are wrong, of course, and efforts to paint De Niro as a fool just might backfire in the most spectacular way. In the end, as more and more parents see the tragedy of autism unfold in their own life, how long can the charade be maintained?

Protect Your Right to Informed Consent and Defend Vaccine Exemptions

With all the uncertainty surrounding the safety and efficacy of vaccines, it’s critical to protect your right to make independent health choices and exercise voluntary informed consent to vaccination. It is urgent that everyone in America stand up and fight to protect and expand vaccine informed consent protections in state public health and employment laws. The best way to do this is to get personally involved with your state legislators and educating the leaders in your community.

NVIC Advocacy poster

THINK GLOBALLY, ACT LOCALLY.

National vaccine policy recommendations are made at the federal level but vaccine laws are made at the state level. It is at the state level where your action to protect your vaccine choice rights can have the greatest impact.

It is critical for EVERYONE to get involved now in standing up for the legal right to make voluntary vaccine choices in America because those choices are being threatened by lobbyists representing drug companies, medical trade associations, and public health officials, who are trying to persuade legislators to strip all vaccine exemptions from public health laws.

Signing up for NVIC’s free Advocacy Portal at www.NVICAdvocacy.org gives you immediate, easy access to your own state legislators on your smart phone or computer so you can make your voice heard. You will be kept up-to-date on the latest state bills threatening your vaccine choice rights and get practical, useful information to help you become an effective vaccine choice advocate in your own community.

Also, when national vaccine issues come up, you will have the up-to-date information and call to action items you need at your fingertips. So please, as your first step, sign up for the NVIC Advocacy Portal.

Share Your Story With the Media and People You Know

If you or a family member has suffered a serious vaccine reaction, injury, or death, please talk about it. If we don’t share information and experiences with one another, everybody feels alone and afraid to speak up. Write a letter to the editor if you have a different perspective on a vaccine story that appears in your local newspaper. Make a call in to a radio talk show that is only presenting one side of the vaccine story.

I must be frank with you; you have to be brave because you might be strongly criticized for daring to talk about the “other side” of the vaccine story. Be prepared for it and have the courage to not back down. Only by sharing our perspective and what we know to be true about vaccination, will the public conversation about vaccination open up so people are not afraid to talk about it.

We cannot allow the drug companies and medical trade associations funded by drug companies or public health officials promoting forced use of a growing list of vaccines to dominate the conversation about vaccination.

The vaccine injured cannot be swept under the carpet and treated like nothing more than “statistically acceptable collateral damage” of national one-size-fits-all mandatory vaccination policies that put way too many people at risk for injury and death. We shouldn’t be treating people like guinea pigs instead of human beings.

Internet Resources Where You Can Learn More

I encourage you to visit the website of the non-profit charity, the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC), at www.NVIC.org:

  • NVIC Memorial for Vaccine Victims: View descriptions and photos of children and adults, who have suffered vaccine reactions, injuries, and deaths. If you or your child experiences an adverse vaccine event, please consider posting and sharing your story here.
  • If You Vaccinate, Ask 8 Questions: Learn how to recognize vaccine reaction symptoms and prevent vaccine injuries.
  • Vaccine Freedom Wall: View or post descriptions of harassment and sanctions by doctors, employers, and school and health officials for making independent vaccine choices.
  • Vaccine Failure Wall: View or post descriptions about vaccines that have failed to work and protect the vaccinated from disease.

Connect With Your Doctor or Find a New One That Will Listen and Care

If your pediatrician or doctor refuses to provide medical care to you or your child unless you agree to get vaccines you don’t want, I strongly encourage you to have the courage to find another doctor. Harassment, intimidation, and refusal of medical care is becoming the modus operandi of the medical establishment in an effort to stop the change in attitude of many parents about vaccinations after they become truly educated about health and vaccination. However, there is hope.

At least 15 percent of young doctors recently polled admit that they’re starting to adopt a more individualized approach to vaccinations in direct response to the vaccine safety concerns of parents.

It is good news that there is a growing number of smart young doctors, who prefer to work as partners with parents in making personalized vaccine decisions for children, including delaying vaccinations or giving children fewer vaccines on the same day or continuing to provide medical care for those families, who decline use of one or more vaccines.

So take the time to locate a doctor, who treats you with compassion and respect, and is willing to work with you to do what is right for your child.

Sources and References