Tag Archives: malnutrition
A new study finds that most U.S. adults fail to meet recommended daily levels of 10 key nutrients, and those with disabilities have even worse nutrition than average.
An estimated 10 to 25 percent of U.S. adults fit into one or more category of disability, from those who have difficulties with activities of daily living, such as dressing, bathing and eating, to those who cannot use their legs or struggle to accomplish routine tasks, such as money management or household chores.
To determine how these physical or mental difficulties can affect nutrition, University of Illinois researchers analyzed two waves of self-reported food and supplement consumption data from 11,811 adults, more than 4,200 of whom qualified as disabled. The team drew the data from the 2007-2008 and 2009-2010 National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys, which are conducted by the National Center for Health Statistics.
“We conducted statistical analyses to compare people with and without disabilities in terms of nutrient intake,” said University of Illinois kinesiology and community health professor Ruopeng An, who led the effort. He and his colleagues report their findings in the Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics.
“We found that American people consume much lower amounts of nutrients than are recommended,” An said. “For example, only 11.3 percent of people meet the daily recommended intake of fiber. Only 4.7 percent of adults consume recommended amounts of potassium.”
A large majority of U.S. adults also fall short of recommended intakes of vitamin A, vitamin C , vitamin D, calcium and iron, An said. They also eat more saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium than recommended, he said.
The picture for those who are disabled is even bleaker. Disabled American adults were even less likely than those without a disability to meet recommended dietary levels of saturated fat, fiber, vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium and potassium, the researchers report. The only exceptions (for intake of vitamin A, vitamin C and fiber) were among people with the lowest level of disability, whose intakes were comparable to non-disabled adults, An said.
“In general, people with disabilities are also disadvantaged nutritionally compared with people without disabilities, even though the bar is already so low,” he said.
Those with the most severe physical and mental challenges were also the least likely to eat well, An said. This makes sense if one considers the challenges they must overcome to obtain, prepare and eat a healthy diet, he said.
“Physically, financially and mentally, they have different barriers to accessing healthy food,” he said.
A trip to the grocery store can be a challenge for anyone who uses a cane, walker or wheelchair to get around. Some cannot grasp small items, open cans or jars, or stand at a countertop to prepare foods. Some have difficulty chewing or digesting certain foods, or may be restricted to a liquid diet. Or they use medications that affect their appetite or ability to taste foods, An said.
“Policymakers and activists for the disabled traditionally have focused primarily on improving transportation options and the physical accessibility of buildings, roads, paths and parking lots,” An said. “Now it’s time for them to turn their attention to the nutritional challenges that confront people with disabilities.”
h/t: Natural Blaze
A report in the UK Daily Mail says that hospitalization cases for treatment of malnutrition have doubled over the past 5 years. The increase is linked to Britain’s crippling economic downturn.
Easington MP Grahame Morris, who sits on the House of Commons health select committee, told the Chronicle that the figures should be an alarm bell.
He said: ‘I certainly think the Government’s policies on austerity with cuts in public services and welfare benefits have been a contributory factor.
‘I suspect, with increasing fuel bills, many low-income households in the North East, especially older people, are having to choose between heating and eating.’
Ministers have previously argued that a surge in demand has in part been fuelled by jobcentre staff being allowed to refer the unemployed to food banks for help.
Cuts to benefits, frozen or falling wages and rising living costs have been blamed in part for some people struggling to make ends meet.
The figures come as the Archbishop of Canterbury has urged Christmas shoppers to give money to Britain’s expanding network of food banks rather than splash out on expensive presents.
The Most Reverend Justin Welby made the appeal in reaction to news of a shocking increase in the number of impoverished Britons now relying on food handouts. (source)
This is our future.
As the US economy continues to collapse and the processed food industry continues to churn out ever-cheaper, ever-more-toxic garbage, we are going to see malnutrition cases increase dramatically in our own country. The poor are targeted by advertisers selling the most chemical-laden, GMO-filled substances masquerading as food, while simple, nutritious organic foods are out of reach for the average American. Those of us who prioritize real food are painted as “snobs” and “elitists” while marketers try to make fast food and packaged food the first choice for lower-income consumers.
Of course, those of us in the know realize that looking after our health by filling our bodies with what was meant to nourish us is just good sense, and not an exercise in snobbery.
We can easily compare our own financial situation to that of the UK, who can compare their situation to that of Greece. The pattern is the always the same when economies crumble, and we’d be wise to use the information trickling out of Europe to serve as a guide to our preparedness steps.
As a measure for the future, it is vital for the health of your family to stock up now on the most nutritious foods you can. Also purchase good quality vitamin supplements, heirloom seeds, and the necessary items from producing and preserving as much of your own food as possible. Keep in mind that the things no one can take for you are your knowledge and skills.
If we can’t learn from history, we’re doomed to make the same mistakes that others did. People who were formerly middle class are now in line at food banks and recipients of government benefits. As things collapse further, food bank donations will slow down and benefits will get slashed again and again until they are gone. Watch closely the situations in Europe and the UK, because as their events unfold, we can see our own future.
Daisy Luther is a freelance writer and editor. Her website, The Organic Prepper, offers information on healthy prepping, including premium nutritional choices, general wellness and non-tech solutions. You can follow Daisy on Facebook and Twitter, and you can email her at [email protected]
Did you ever wonder how people who exist on a diet of mainly processed foods can be both overweight and malnourished at the same time? Despite overly abundant calories, people who live off of boxed macaroni and cheese, frozen dinners, Ramen noodles, and other packaged foods aren’t getting the nutrients that people who eat a whole foods diet are getting. Deadly GMO ingredients aside, the sheer amount of chemicals in processed foods can lead to disease, obesity, and malnutrition.
If you aren’t entirely familiar with the way processed foods can affect your health, read on. This is an introduction to how processed foods differ from whole foods, based on frequently asked questions about the subject.
What happens in your body when you eat processed foods?
When you eat heavily preserved foods, your body can’t break them down to use the nutrients in them (if there are nutrients left in the first place after all that processing). The video below compares how homemade noodles from fresh, wholesome ingredients and Ramen noodles travel through your digestive system. This video is an excellent illustration of what happens in your body after consuming two different types of food:
Do you see how it is impossible for the digestive acids in the body to break down the processed food? The Ramen noodles remain recognizable most of the way through the system until they are ready to be excreted. This means that the few nutrients that may still be present are not made available for the body’s use. The accessibility of nutrients for your body’s use is called “bio-availability”.
This is the reason that North America is full of malnourished fat people – those who rely on processed food must consume far more of it in a vain effort to get the nutrients they need. They crave food because their bodies are crying out for the vitamins and minerals that are needed to function.
Mood disorders and mental illness can also be directly related to the consumption of processed foods. They are lacking in the Omega 3s and other nutrients that are vital in proper brain function and good mental health. (You can learn more about nutrition for mental health HERE). This is not to oversimplify the seriousness of mental illness – it is a crushing, debilitating experience. But the symptoms can be lessened, if not cured altogether, with excellent nutrition and the avoidance of trigger chemicals.
It’s not just about malnutrition, it’s about consuming poison.
Additives like high fructose corn syrup, sugar and MSG are linked to obesity, not just because of the excess useless calories and lack of nutritional bio-availability mentioned above, but because of their “addictive” qualities. When you consume them, they actually trigger the release of dopamine in your brain, the same hormone that is released when an addict takes a needle full of heroin. Over time, it takes more and more of the same substance to achieve the same feeling, that of pleasure and euphoria. Foods containing these ingredients are actually engineered to create cravings and addiction. It gives a whole new meaning to the old Lay’s Potato Chip commercial, “Bet you can’t eat just one.”
The problems don’t end with malnutrition and associated illnesses. The chemicals added to these foods are directly linked with cancer, diabetes, infertility, autoimmune disorders, and heart disease.
Make over your diet
Changing your eating habits will be one of the most important things your ever do for yourself and your family. While processed foods are cheap, quick, and abundant, whole foods require a little more effort. Your health is worth it!
- The first thing to do is to rid your kitchen of all of the toxins. If it’s there, you’ll eat it. Spend one week eating only what you cook completely from scratch. Just one week will highlight for you the places where you are using “food” instead of “ingredients” to make your meals. Use only single ingredients for one week: flour, rice, oats, organic milk and yogurt, grass-fed meat, organic fruits and vegetables, and basic pantry supplies (yeast, baking soda, etc.) Include your kids in the process of making homemade pretzels, baking cookies and creating gourmet oatmeal flavors like maple syrup apple pecan. (If they’re included in the preparations, it helps to lessen the complaining if they are craving foods that are more familiar.) Even if your diet is already pretty clean, you may be surprised to discover that you have more of a reliance on packaged items than you thought.
- Many people are put off by the high price of eating healthy. And they are right, to a certain extent. If you go to the health food store and buy packages of organic crackers, fancy breads from the bakery, and other gourmet items, you will spend a fortune. But keep in mind an organic processed food is still a processed food. It’s better then something from Kellogg’s or General Mills, but it isn’t ideal. There are a lot of ways to clean up your diet without breaking the bank. Click HERE to read about “20 Ways to Build a Whole Foods Kitchen on a Half Price Budget.” All of the suggestions won’t work in every location, but you should be able to cobble together enough of them to create a healthful, non-processed diet at a fraction of the price you expected to pay. Be sure to check our your local farmers’ market to find a local, nutritious bounty at a great price.
- Another of the major complaints about a whole foods lifestyle is that it is too time-consuming. Here’s a list of 40 Quick and Clean Snacks that require little to no prep time. Being sick and unhealthy is far more time-consuming than taking a moment to prepare a non-processed meal or snack.
Once you cut the processed foods from the majority of your diet, you will begin to notice how awful you feel when you go off-plan and eat a bag of chips or a fast food meal. The interesting (and horrifying) thing about this is – you felt that way ALL THE TIME before cutting that food from your diet, but you didn’t realize it because feeling unwell was your normal.
Daisy Luther is a freelance writer and editor. Her website, The Organic Prepper, offers information on healthy prepping, including premium nutritional choices, general wellness and non-tech solutions. You can follow Daisy on Facebook and Twitter, and you can email her at [email protected]
In a stunning display of nutritional ignorance, three women ram through a Codex standard that leaves many with sub-optimal nutrition
The Codex Committee on Nutrition and Foods for Special Dietary Uses (CCNFSDU) just finished meeting all last week (December 3-7) in Bad Soden, a small German city near Frankfurt am Main. Nearly 300 delegates were in attendance, comprised of government functionaries and international non-governmental organizations (INGOs) representatives. So, for one week, the assembled delegates – including the INGO delegation of the National Health Federation (NHF) –met, discussed, and debated a wide number of food and food-supplement issues, including the controversial draft Nutrient Reference Values (NRVs) for vitamins and minerals.
Remember, the food guidelines and standards adopted by this Committee, and approved by the Codex Alimentarius Commission, are important because they are then used domestically by numerous countries worldwide and by virtually all countries in international food trade.
Nutrient Reference Values
Those who have been following the National Health Federation’s efforts at Codex since the mid-1990s will recall that at the Codex Nutrition Committee meeting in Dusseldorf, Germany in 2009, the NHF singlehandedly launched the opposition that stopped the Australian delegation and others from “dumbing down” these Nutrient Reference Values.
Australia and its supporters had wrongly proposed that lower NRVs be adopted for certain important vitamins and minerals, including Vitamin C. For example, the Proposed Draft Additional or Revised NRVs for Labelling Purposes in the Codex Guidelines on Nutrition Labelling suggested reducing the Vitamin A NRV from 800 micrograms down to 550 micrograms, Vitamin C down from an already-abysmally-low 60 milligrams to 45 milligrams, Thiamin down from 1.4 milligrams to 1.2 milligrams, Niacin from 18 milligrams down to 15 milligrams, Magnesium down from 300 milligrams to 240 milligrams, and so forth.
These values are already at subsistence levels, and most consumers need far more than the miserable amounts that Codex would parsimoniously dole out to them in order to enjoy optimal and robust health. Yet Australia and its supporters are so fixated on reducing the values even more that they have blinded themselves to the real science showing the absolute need for more nutrient intake, not less.
Fortunately, thanks to NHF and its key supporters India and Iraq at the 2009 meeting, the Committee wisely chose not to move forward with any of those proposed NRVs and instead held the work back for further review and study. Three years have passed since we first stopped these NRVs from being adopted, and each year of non-adoption has been a victory for NHF, and for you.
The Electronic Working Group
Last year, the Committee created an electronic Working Group (eWG) – chaired by ever-present Australia – to look at the hard numbers for each of the vitamins and minerals under consideration. NHF was a member of that group along with twenty other delegations. Working through e-mails, the Australian-led eWG gradually prepared a report; and the NHF and other delegations submitted comments throughout 2012, to be included in that report.
Unfortunately, the United States seemed to have had more of Australia’s ear than anyone else; and the eWG accordingly submitted to this year’s Committee a Final Report (over NHF’s objections) that essentially split the vitamins and minerals into two groups: One that the “eWG” (read here, Australia and the United States) considered “suitable” for adoption; and a second group that was considered “unsuitable” and would need further work.
Strangely enough, this was exactly the approach pushed by the United States at the 2010 CCNFSDU meeting held in Santiago, Chile, but which NHF, the European Union, and others had opposed and defeated back then. Resurrected from its vampire grave just in time for this 2012 meeting, this plan found support with both Australia and the United States working hard to ensure that, this time, at least half of the dumbed-down nutrient values could be pushed forward towards adoption.
The 2012 Meeting
As planned, the Committee once again took up discussion of the appropriate NRVs for Codex to adopt, using the eWG Report as its starting point. Of course, the Committee covered other topics, such as draft guidelines on the addition of essential nutrients to foods and formulated supplementary foods for older infants and children. The latter was as hotly-debated a topic as the NRVs.
The Chairwoman was once again Dr. Pia Noble, appointed by the German Health Ministry. Co-NHF delegate, Katherine Carroll, spent time during breaks speaking with Dr. Noble to advance NHF, but it is clear that Dr. Noble has little regard for the INGOs, who are just nuisances getting in the way of pushing her agenda forward. Not surprisingly, Dr. Noble is popular with some of the delegates because, as they put it, “she moves things along.”
Well, “moving things along” – like “Fly Me To The Moon” – has become something of a theme song for this Codex Committee. Real nutritional science is trampled into the mud as the Committee rushes pell-mell to adopt guidelines and standards without considering the consequences of what it is doing. Unfortunately only a few delegates realize what is happening, the majority are content to drift along in concert with and at the direction of the few leaders.
On the second day of the meeting, just before the lunch break, the Australian delegate, Janine Lewis, read through her eWG Final Report while we all listened. I knew what was coming because I had spoken with her before the meeting had started, asking her to, at the very least, withhold calcium from her “suitable” list of nutrients that she would advance for adoption. When she asked and heard in response that I had only spoken with her and the U.S. delegate about that, her position visibly hardened and she told me simply, “Let’s see what the Committee does.”
It became obvious soon enough what the Committee would do, as I pushed the button on my microphone to speak when the meeting resumed after the lunch break. As in 2009, I was the second person to speak! This is highly unusual since the Codex procedure is to let all of the country delegations speak first, and only then allow the INGOs to speak. Being second meant that there were few who wanted to speak out on this issue.
Barbara Schneeman, the U.S. delegate, had spoken immediately before me and said the U.S. “liked these [NRV] figures” and thus liked the idea of advancing the “suitable” nutrients to the Commission for adoption. With that, my microphone illuminated red and it was my turn to speak. I told the Committee that, except for calcium (whose value had been increased while magnesium’s had been decreased, the exact opposite of what should happen with these twin minerals), the Australian figures were all too low, that the NRVs were being reduced by anywhere from 15% to 25%, and questioned why Australia was always choosing the lowest values it could find, even lower than what the guidelines would call for. The safety of vitamins and minerals, I argued, was unparalleled, so that there could be no problem with having higher levels of these nutrients. Moreover, lowering the NRVs was inconsistent with Codex’s announced goal of preventing malnutrition.
The International Alliance of Dietary Food Supplements Associations (IADSA) and the International Dairy Federation (IDF) spoke up after NHF, both attacking the proposed values of a specific nutrient – IADSA advocating a higher value for Biotin and IDF a lower value for Calcium (because the higher value would mean that milk could no longer be considered a “rich” source of calcium). The Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN), to the confusion of many, simply said “We would like to stress the scientific underpinnings of these numbers.” Did that mean they supported the values, or opposed them? It sounded more like the former, but we could not tell.
As expected, Australia responded in defense of the dumbed-down NRVs; and NHF then challenged those numbers yet again. But this time, the Malaysian, Iranian, and South African delegates spoke up one right after another in strong support of NHF and in favor of more sensible NRVs. It was heartening to hear these three women speak out for sensible nutrition based upon real science.
NHF and IADSA spoke up again, respectively opposing the adoption of any of these values and, in the case of IADSA, the Biotin value. The European Union (EU) delegate, Basil Mathioudakis, quite sensibly asked the Chairwoman what logic did it make to advance some and not all of the NRVs at the same time. Switzerland disagreed with the EU, but NHF spoke up in support of the EU’s question and suggested that the so-called “suitable” NRVs be held back, or at the very least some of the more questionable ones such as Calcium and Vitamin K. IADSA, in turn, pointed out that the Committee was going against its own guidelines by not selecting the proper value, a higher value, for Biotin.
But the Chairwoman, Pia Noble, was having none of that and insisted that these “suitable” NRVs were going forward despite the substantial opposition. In a last-ditch effort, I asked the Chairwoman to at least move the Vitamin K, Biotin, and Calcium from the “suitable” Table to the “unsuitable” category. Not only was the answer “no,” but Dr. Noble decided that since opposition might grow against these so-called “suitable” NRVs, then they should be advanced along the path of adoption as quickly as possible. So, she unilaterally undertook to advance them along the 8-Step adoption process to Step 5/8, where they now hover on the edge of full adoption by the Commission itself next year.
As an added insult, the following day, the Committee discussed another Agenda Item, that is, revisions to the Codex General Principles for the Addition of Essential Nutrients to Foods, which in small but important part dealt with the question of whether Codex should or could state that nutrients can prevent or reduce the risk of disease. Amazingly enough, many delegations spoke out against such language. Only the U.S. delegation and two INGOs (NHF and GAIN) defended this statement.
The Troika of Pia Noble, Janine Lewis, and Barbara Schneeman succeeded in finally pushing forward eleven of the nineteen vitamins and minerals further along the road to adoption. At the Codex Alimentarius Commission meeting next July there will be a further push to adopt these eleven vitamins and minerals and set their low (except for Calcium) values in stone. Barbara Schneeman, the U.S. delegate, will not be there as her retirement was announced at the CCNFSDU meeting. Fortunately, there is still an opportunity to derail this effort to steam-roller consumers into ill-health and NHF intends to make the most of it.
In addition, the Chairwoman reauthorized the eWG to continue its work on the “unsuitable” nutrient values and the NHF is taking an active part in that working group’s activities. The eWG will report back to the CCNFSDU when it meets again next Fall in Germany.
Barbara Schneeman’s legacy at Codex has been an unfortunate one of pushing big corporate interests while thumbing her nose at consumers. Whether it was her obstinate opposition to adopting a guideline for labeling GMO foods (at the Codex Committee on Food Labelling) or her questionable support for dumbing-down NRVs (at CCNFSDU), she has unfortunately been too often on the wrong side of the issues. Perhaps, in the interests of better health for consumers worldwide, her retirement from Codex could have happened a few years earlier. While this might sound uncharitable, inflicting ill-health upon billions of humans is far less charitable still.
The Troika has cleverly pushed forward some of the nutrient NRVs in the hope that the others must inevitably follow along. Whatever their agenda might truly be, the sad fact is that consumer health will suffer from their thoughtless and stercoraceous actions.
The problem facing consumers is not vitamin-and-mineral toxicity, it is widespread deficiencies of those nutrients. Too many Codex delegates are stuck in the mindset that human populations only need bare subsistence nutrition; that is, that nutrition that merely keeps them breathing and their feet moving one step at a time. The concept that there is a greater level of nutrition – of optimal nutrition – is as foreign to them as space flight would be to Stone Age people. They fail to comprehend that nutrients at proper levels can actually enable individuals to function at more proficient levels and without those diseases that afflict sub-optimally fed populations.
The disservice done to Humanity by those too lazy to think and then act is so profound as to be disheartening to many others. Many among us question the motivations of those who want to only push a guideline or standard forward to final adoption simply to “get it done and out of the way.” Is their thinking really as shallow as that? Maybe we better hope it is, as that is an easier mindset to deal with than one of active malevolence.
 The National Health Federation delegation consisted of Scott Tips and Katherine A. Carroll. The NHF-Germany Executive Director, Petra Weiss, took ill and could not attend this year. Attorney Jeannine Stewart and others helped Scott Tips draft the NHF’s submission paper arguing for higher levels of NRVs. This NHF paper was published by the German Codex Secretariat as Conference Room Document 13 (CRD 13) and made available to all of the CCNFSDU delegates at the meeting and can be found on-line at www.thenhf.com/codex/. All photographs in this article were taken by Katherine Carroll.
 Not to be confused with Maximum Upper Permitted Limits, NRVs are nothing more than souped-up RDAs. These are numerical values assigned to specified nutrients that will supposedly cover 98% of the population’s nutritional needs for that nutrient. By referring to the NRV for a vitamin or mineral, the consumer is supposed to know whether he or she is getting an adequate intake of that nutrient, even if, as in the case of Vitamin C, 100% of the NRV is defined as 45 milligrams! These values are claimed to be set according to rigorous scientific evidence; but, in reality, “science” at Codex levels is often nothing more than a flimsy set of assumptions and erroneous conclusions cobbled together to justify keeping consumers “safe” from “dangerous” vitamins and minerals.
 The proposed Codex NRVs are: Vitamin A (dropped from 800 mcg to 550 mcg); Vitamin D (5 mcg or 200 IUs); Vitamin E (8.8 mg); Vitamin K (60 mcg); Vitamin C (dropped from 60 mg to 45 mg); Thiamin (dropped from 1.4 to 1.2 mg); Riboflavin (dropped from 1.6 mg to 1.2 mg); Niacin (dropped from 18 mg to 15 mg); Vitamin B6 (dropped from 2 mg to 1.3 mg); Folate (raised to 400 mcg); Vitamin B12 (2.4 mcg); Pantothenate (5 mg); Biotin (30 mcg); Calcium (raised from 800 mg to 1000 mg); Magnesium (dropped from 300 mg to 240 mg); Iodine (150 mcg); Iron (14.3-43.1 mg depending upon bioavailability); Zinc (dropped from 15 mg to 3.6-11.9, depending upon bioavailability); Selenium (30 mcg); Phosphorus (700 mg); Chloride (2.3 grams); Copper (900 mcg); Fluoride (3.5 mg); Manganese (2.1 mg); Chromium (30 mcg); and Molybdenum (45 mcg).
 See CCNFSDU document number CX/NFSDU 12/34/8.
 NHF has been opposed to Australia’s desire to raise the Calcium NRV from 800 mg to 1000 mg for several reasons. First of all, it is infantile nutritional science to think that health can be improved by raising Calcium intake while simultaneously lowering Magnesium intake (here, from 300 mg to 240 mg!). Magnesium and Calcium are twin minerals and raising Calcium intake while lowering Magnesium intake is a certain recipe for disaster, as it invites the calcium to settle into the soft tissue like the skin and arteries and not go to where it properly belongs, in the bones and teeth. Secondly, by fixing the NRV for Calcium, the Committee has limited the range in which the Committee may now set the NRV for Magnesium. If the Committee is to follow sound nutritional science, then the Magnesium NRV cannot now be set any lower than 500 mg. That is a great distance from the measly 240 mg value that the Chairwoman and Australia would like to establish.
 Vitamin K, Thiamin, Riboflavin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Folate, Vitamin B12, Pantothenate, Biotin, Calcium, and Iodine.
 These three strong-willed delegates are: Fatima Sulong (Malaysia), Atefeh Fooladi Moghaddam (Iran), and Andiswa Ngqaka (South Africa), who resisted the strong urgings of the Chairwoman to simply look the other way and advance the dumbed-down NRVs. The three women took an unpopular stand and are true heroines, and to be much commended for speaking out for health.
By Scott C. Tips – President of The National Health Federation
Also see related article by Kat Carroll, NTP, Associate Editor, Health Freedom News, National Health Federation http://www.thesleuthjournal.com/update-results-of-codex-alimentarius-meetings-2012-in-frankfurt-germany/
Codex Alimentarius is a UN-sponsored concept and organization, which – under the auspices of the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) – creates food standards and guidelines used in international trade. In 1994, the World Trade Organization (WTO) replaced the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) with actual trade-sanction power to enforce Codex and other standards and guidelines. Not surprisingly, Codex took on an entirely new importance.
Now nearly 300 of us – Country delegates and International Non-governmental Organizations (INGOs http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_nongovernmental_organization) – were involved in Germany this December in a playoff where inches of dry but crucial script would gain the yardage of victory or bitter defeat. This was the 34th session of the Codex Committee on Nutrition and Foods for Special Dietary Uses (CCNFSDU), alias “Malnutrition Meeting,” in frigid Bad Soden, Germany the first week of December 2012, where the National Health Federation sought to make its own gains and preserve our health freedoms.
In this innocuous meeting room at the Ramada Inn, play by play, line by line, either the “ball” is moving forward, backward, or it’s being passed or kicked into oblivion without regard to any real goal in a last-ditch effort to get rid of it before being tackled. In this case, for the majority of the represented World, ‘tackled’ was a voluntary fumble, “When is it break time? Let’s just agree with the provided wording and get a cup of coffee.” You have to realize the World doesn’t often enjoy what the United States takes completely for granted, in this case, safe, high-quality supplements in abundance.
In a worst case scenario, Codex is rigged and we merely delay the inevitable passage of their ultimate will. It takes a skillful operator – in this case Dr. Pia Noble (what a misnomer…) – who can lead the room and in clearly balanced opposition somehow convince or cow the country delegates into believing there is actually consensus. That’s how Codex operates: by consensus. We don’t vote unless pushed. The World must agree, must cooperate…however, what I witnessed at this session of the CCNFSDU was clearly, in legal terms, “leading” and manipulating the room to the wishes of three strong forces: the U.S., Australia, and, of course, Chairwoman Dr. Pia (anything but) Noble.
At Codex Alimentarius (Latin for “Food Code”), the plays are read, line by line, and debated on by a World that doesn’t necessarily even accept certain principles in their daily life – like taking supplements. As a Nutritional Therapist, this was my meeting. I had to be there. Thankfully a few staunch supporters made sure that happened.
In the case of this particular Codex meeting held in Bad Soden, the ball was in jeopardy of being punted into oblivion when we hit the discussion of Nutrient Reference Values (NRVs). Was there anyone out of the nearly 300 delegates who really cared at all about the issues that will impact you when you go to the health-food store this coming year? This was my second Codex meeting and I could see clearly that the paragraphs dedicated to the discussion of our NRVs were in danger of being accepted as written and set into stone around the World, all in favor of just getting to the coffee break, and I mean that literally.
You have to understand, United States citizens enjoy unprecedented access to supplements with values that actually have the power to prevent disease or heal ill health – the rest of the World either does not use supplements, believing they are toxic – like drugs – or the nutrient reference values (RDAs) are so low that multiple bottles would have to be purchased at great expense to create the impact that one good U.S. bottle creates, or they simply don’t have them because no one could afford them when their healthcare system provides “free” drugs as an alternative.
I saw the low reference values firsthand in Germany. We went into a health-food store and I could hardly find the vitamin/mineral section. I had to ask. When I did find the one small shelf, the highest values for Vitamin D3 were 400 IUs. I take 25,000 IUs daily…talk about breaking the bank. No wonder the World, represented in the form of country delegates, was anxious to get to the free coffee, sweet rolls, etc. at the break. Their countries cannot afford what seems to them to be nonsense, so they mentally have moved on and disregarded any pro-vitamin/mineral argument. This is not their World. In fact, if the National Health Federation were not present at this crucial meeting on setting Nutrient Reference Values, I can guarantee you that your World would never be the same again. Once lowered, do you really think NRVs would ever stand the chance of somehow going through Codex’s 8-step process to rise again?
From a Nutritional Therapist’s standpoint, several of the nutrients that were placed on Codex’s sacrificial altar were methylation factors. B6, B12, Folic Acid…If we don’t methylate well, we can develop opportunistic diseases. Cancer…heart attack that occurs when Homocysteine elevates…Some, like calcium, which Codex wished to elevate out of proportion to stabilizing magnesium, and when taken out of balance, creates disease as well by mineralizing in soft tissue like blood vessels instead of the bone and teeth. So, at this point I’m thinking, “Is Codex out to kill us?”
So many of the final decisions made by Codex equal ill health for the World. It means both Big Pharma and the so-called “health” care system profits, while we grow ill and die. It is no secret that depopulation is one aspect of the World’s agenda. “Dr. Henry Kissinger himself wrote: “Depopulation should be the highest priority of U.S. foreign policy towards the Third World.” Apparently America is the new ‘third World.’
If you ever needed an advocate for your health and your health freedom, it is now. Now is the time to have your wishes and your Voice represented at Codex. Is it any wonder that Codex is not letting any more health-freedom organizations into the elite representation? The National Health Federation (NHF) is the ONLY health-freedom organization that has the power to speak out and, believe me, we do and we have – frequently. We have also submitted comments to the Electronic Working Groups that often meet in cyberspace before the meetings, and we also have the power to propose correction of the final report. Do you know how many delegates stick around for the tedious, line-by-line reading of the final report? Many are long gone, mistakenly trusting that the work they performed for the World will actually be represented accurately in the final report. NHF stays … to the bitter end. Hours of rehashing what we have spent the week working toward, defending our documented statements, defending the truth that too-often gets somehow skewed, omitted, or somehow rendered opaque.
NHF came to this meeting to promote and defend healthier Nutrient Reference Values. The attack by Australia and others on these particular NRVs, from my professional standpoint, is designed to take out a large number of the population at least in the U.S. where we have access to supplements with values that are currently at least approaching sufficiency and where we have the incomes generally to support their purchase.
What was so incredibly ironic about this meeting was the emphasis on malnutrition in the World. It actually sparked a growing interest in me about the integrity of infant formulas. They are including transfats and contaminants in infant formula! When we learn that in France, for example, breast feeding is neither popular nor widely practiced, it pays to defend the integrity of infant formulas! But the trajectory of the morning – 3 hours before NRVs were even approached – was on ‘growing up milk,’ which Elizabeth Streken (an INGO representative of the International Baby Formula Action Network) said was a market ploy to get mothers to feel guilty if they didn’t keep bottle feeding babies way past time… At any rate, the discrepancy and complete disconnect in regards to the NRVs was that supposedly Codex was there to prevent malnutrition in the World, yet here they were, the very last ones in favor of optimal nutrition for infants. Instead, Codex was lowering our already malnutrition-promoting, low NRVs, which are set to prevent the very last-ditch disease processes before death instead of promoting optimum nutrition and vibrant, disease-resistant health.
So, these two themes predominated: (1) Get through the tedious drivel and get me to the coffee and donut cart; and (2) The incongruous ‘Yes, we are all for stopping malnutrition … let’s lower the values in the supplements, shall we?” And then let us not forget the overarching theme by Mme. Chair – “not so terribly Noble, Pia”— “What I Decide, Will Be.”
The National Health Federation has been in existence long before any other health-freedom organization was even a ‘gleam in the father’s eye.’ We are the granddaddy of them all. We’ve employed a lobbyist in Washington, D.C. for more than 50 years. We alone hold the distinction of being the only health-freedom organization able to speak at Codex. So, do you see now how important this ability is? Not only can we speak; but, as mentioned above, we can submit written comments and arguments – and we did, three times – on the NRV issue alone prior to the meeting in Germany (twice as part of the electronic working group hosted by the ultimate opposition: Australia, and once directly to the Committee).
Do I feel fortunate to be on the team of the most powerful health-freedom organization at Codex? I feel incredibly humbled. For one who had little political interest or influence in the past, I am now thrust into the heart of the action where policy is set for the World. It is not only quite humbling but it carries an enormous responsibility to carry the wishes and desires of those whom NHF speaks for and represents to the seat of power. And we do so faithfully time and again.
The lives that are impacted are not only our own but those of our children and grandchildren. Our family’s health is at stake. In the final analysis, if we lose our health, we have lost. It is all we have besides the faith that sustains us and keeps us seeking the path of Light in the growing darkness of the World. The Codex meeting on nutrition was anything but. It was about some elite marketers seeking to manipulate the World – guilting them into keeping children on formulas when they needed to embrace a solid diet – real ‘growing up’ food. It was about government regulators lowering key nutrients and raising others that would ensure that our health would deteriorate. It masqueraded in the guise of compassion and the oft-said mantra “consumer protection,” yet all the while was undermining our health by chipping away at the very foundations in the name of control and ill health.
We at NHF spoke for you. At the end of the day, I approached the dais where Dr. Pia Noble held court. I asked her for 5 minutes at the next meeting to explain the science behind our commitment to NRVs. She grimaced, rolled her eyes, disregarded me completely in the most disrespectful way possible for one woman to address another, and then deferred to the Secretariat. The answer was – you guessed it – NO. “It might create further discussion….” Codex is a body that is supposed to elevate your health, not suppress it. But who speaks for you there? The National Health Federation. That’s the real WHO.
By Kat Carroll, NTP,
Associate Editor, Health Freedom News, National Health Federation
To access NHF President Scott Tips’ article summarizing the Codex meeting, visit the website at www.thenhf.com or this direct link: http://www.thenhf.com/article.php?id=3567 or http://www.thesleuthjournal.com/codex-nutrition-committee-chooses-malnutrition/. While you’re there, we invite you to join our efforts to protect the health of the World by becoming a member or helping to underwrite expenses to future Codex Alimentarius meetings like the one upcoming in March 2013 in Beijing where the topic of ‘contaminants’ will be reviewed. My personal passion is focusing on contaminants in infant formulas, as well as aspartame and aluminum in our food supply. We really cannot fight this fight without every one of you pitching in and doing your part. Believe me, it’s so satisfying to know we really ARE making an impact on this World for the benefit of future generations.