Tag Archives: toxins

What Is Body Burden?

ToxicChem-in-the-body

Every day we are bombarded with toxic compounds. The air we breathe, water we drink, food we eat, and even the homes we live in — all have some level of toxic contamination. It’s just the unavoidable nature of our industrialized world; there’s almost no safe haven. You can’t eliminate every point of exposure but you can reduce and control it. And by reducing your exposure to toxins, you’ll help reduce the effect they have on your health.

What is Body Burden?

Body burden is a term that refers to the total accumulation of toxins in your body. This can include anything from dangerous metals like lead or mercury, to pesticides, unsafe food additives, or fluoride — just to name a scant few.

Certainly your body has self-cleansing mechanisms, but if you expose yourself to more toxins than your body can eliminate, they will accumulate in your fatty tissue and organs. The greater the accumulation, the greater the stresses on your health.

Why You Should Be Concerned About Body Burden

Everyday products like plastic containers and even children’s toys can be tainted with any one of over 80,000 chemicals. Very few of these chemicals have been safety tested and almost all were given rubber stamp approval with no consideration for potential health effects.

In the “Fourth National Report on Human Exposure to Environmental Chemicals,” the CDC reported that the average person in the United States has at least 212 chemicals in their blood and urine. [1] Seemingly innocuous substances like non-stick coating, fire retardants, baby products, and plastic food containers all contain some level of chemical contaminants that contribute to body burden. When you consider the fact that you’re nearly always in contact with something, it’s clear how accumulation happens.

Reducing Your Body Burden

Reducing your body burden requires an active approach. The ubiquity of toxins in the environment — the environment known as nature as well as your personal environment — requires you to be awake and actively defend yourself. Be smart about what you allow into your life. Equip your home with water and air purification devices. Consider routine colon, liver, and kidney cleanses. A comprehensive approach is the best strategy to reducing the accumulation of toxins in your body.

References:

  1. Centers for Disease Control. National Report on Human Exposure to Environmental Chemicals. CDC.

Dr. Edward F. Group III, DC, NP, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM has studied natural healing methods for over 20 years and now teaches individuals and practitioners all around the world. He no longer sees patients but solely concentrates on spreading the word of health and wellness to the global community. Under his leadership, Global Healing Center, Inc. has earned recognition as one of the largest alternative, natural and organic health resources on the Internet.

5 Ways Air Pollution Is Destroying Your Health

Health_effects_of_pollution

You probably already know about some of the dangers that severe air pollution exposure can cause and how places like stoplights at intersections can increase your exposure to harmful air particles up to 29 times more than the open road. While these facts are startling, you probably don’t know about the almost invisible dangers. [1] Namely the numerous diseases and cognitive issues now being linked to air pollution. Here we’ll get into five ways you’re letting air pollution destroy your health.

The Hidden Dangers of Air Pollution

Despite the slow turn to more sustainable forms of agriculture and industry, air pollution is still a big problem. Here are just some of the ways air pollution negatively affects your health.

1. Air Pollution is Linked to Suicide

It may seem crazy to think that air pollution could lead to something as serious as suicide, but studies in Taiwan, South Korea, China, and now Utah suggest a link. Not only is suicide the 10th leading cause of death in the US, it is the number 8th cause of death in Utah. [2] Obviously, there are many factors that must be considered when discussing causes of suicide; however, suicide rates increased in Utah during the spring and fall (a time when certain aspects of air pollution can be worse).

2. Air Pollution Slows Cognition in Schoolchildren

We all know that air pollution can exacerbate symptoms of asthma and other respiratory-related illnesses and diseases, but did you also know that it can affect brain development? Dr. Jordi Sunyer did a study to see just how affected schoolchildren are by air pollution (specifically traffic pollution). The study concluded that children who attended schools in polluted areas showed overall slower cognition in comparison to those who attended schools in areas with less traffic pollution. “The associations between slower cognitive development and higher levels of air pollutants remained after the researchers took factors such as parents’ education, commuting time, smoking in the home and green spaces at school into account.” [3]

3. Significant Risks to Frequent Flyers

Those who fly frequently (especially pilots or other airline staff) could potentially be more at risk for certain issues, dubbed “aerotoxic syndrome.” Most planes have a mechanism that compresses air from the engines and uses that as air in the cabin, but sometimes, these mechanisms malfunction and allow oil particles to taint the cabin air. Many airline employees have mentioned this, but one pilot, Richard Westgate, passed away in 2012 after claiming to be a victim of poisonous and toxic cabin fumes. [4]

4. Cremations Release Mercury Into the Air

With land for burials becoming more scarce (and also more expensive), many people turn to cremation as an alternate form of honoring the body of a loved one who has passed on. The unfortunate side effect of cremation is mercury emissions. [5] Honoring a fallen loved one should not come at the price of endangering yourself and others, but there are alternatives such as alkaline hydrolysis or “liquid cremation” that are far healthier for the environment and for you.

5. Air Pollution Linked to Autism

Autism and related disorders have been on the rise for some time and research suggests air pollution may be a contributing factor. Several reports noted a link between exposure to toxic metals and other pollutants in children who were more at risk to develop autism. Other studies focused on pregnant women and how closely they lived to freeways and other sources of heavy pollution. All of the studies found similar exposures to a handful of particular pollutants that seemed to increase the risk of autism in newborns. [6]

Air Pollution: No Simple Solution

It’s difficult to remove all air pollution from your life, unfortunately, but you can monitor and limit your exposure. Keep abreast with local news about your city or even check in on a Breathe Cam. [7] Keep plants inside your home to help remove harmful pollutants. [8] [9] Consider an air purification device, they can be a great active approach for purifying the air in your home.

How’ve you dealt with air pollution? Leave a comment and share your tips below.

References:

  1. Baggaley, Kate. Stoplights are hotspots for air pollution. Science News. 2015.
  2. Pappas, Stephanie. Utah suicides linked to air pollution. Live Science. 2015.
  3. CBC News. Traffic pollution tied to slower cognition in schoolchildren. CBC News. 2015.
  4. Campbell, Jaime. Toxic fumes in plane cabin’s pose health risks to frequent flyers, says coroner. Independent.co.uk. 2015.
  5. Lewis, Barbara. EU should curb mercury emissions from cremations, campaigners say. Reuters. 2015.
  6. Arnold, Carrie. Air pollution and ASDs: Homing in on an environmental risk factor. EHP. 2015.
  7. Keane, Jonathan. Keep an eye on your city’s pollution in real time. New Scientist. 2015.
  8. Barboza, Tony. Cleaner air is linked to stronger lungs in Southern California children. LA Times. 2015.
  9. Kinzler, Don. NASA Study: Houseplants remove harmful substances from indoors. Duluth News Tribute. 2015.

Dr. Edward F. Group III, DC, NP, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM has studied natural healing methods for over 20 years and now teaches individuals and practitioners all around the world. He no longer sees patients but solely concentrates on spreading the word of health and wellness to the global community. Under his leadership, Global Healing Center, Inc. has earned recognition as one of the largest alternative, natural and organic health resources on the Internet.

What Is Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease?

highlighted-liver

You are probably well aware of the symptoms of liver toxicity due to a poor lifestyle. Liver disease, on the other hand, is commonly prescribed to people who consume too much alcohol. Recently, another type of liver disease has been on the rise. Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a different type of liver disease that is not affected by alcohol intake. [1] Instead, it is caused by the high level of accumulated fat within the liver. A normal liver is about 5 – 10% fat. Anymore than that can be harmful and lead to NAFLD or, the more threatening and harmful version, nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). At its worst, NAFLD or NASH can lead to liver failure or liver cancer.

Who Is at Risk for NAFLD?

The liver acts as a filter for the body by separating helpful nutrients and discarding harmful substances. Consequently, the liver encounters many hard-to-handle toxins, as well as lipids or fat cells. Since NAFLD is affected by the amount of fat in the liver, individuals who are overweight or obese are often at risk. Also, people with diabetes or high blood pressure can develop the disease. NAFLD has also been seen in people who undergo rapid weight loss. It has been discovered that 25% of Americans are affected by NAFLD. [2] It is more common in women than in men and is also most prevalent in people ages 40 – 60.

What Are the Symptoms of NAFLD and What Does it Do?

Typically, NAFLD presents with few or no symptoms, [3] but possible signs include: fatigue, weakness, weight loss or loss of appetite, nausea, abdominal pain, and jaundice. NAFLD is usually confirmed via blood tests and ultrasounds. The disease affects the body negatively by causing inflammation in the liver. This inflammation can lead to scarring of the liver tissue which can affect liver functions. If left unchecked, the inflammation and scarring can lead to the escalated form of NAFLD which can, as mentioned above, lead to liver failure.

How Can I Prevent NAFLD?

The best way to avoid developing non-alcoholic fatty liver disease is by leading a healthy lifestyle. If you eat healthy foods, especially ones that support your liver, get regular exercise, and limit your alcohol intake, you should be able to lower your risks of developing NAFLD or NASH. [4]

Has NAFLD affected you or someone you know? Leave a comment and share your experience with us.

References:

  1. Mayo Clinic Staff. Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease. Mayo Clinic. 2014.
  2. American Liver Foundation. NAFLD. American Liver Foundation. 2015.
  3. ACGI. Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease. ACGI. 2012.
  4. Pullen, Lara C. Exercise Improves Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease. Medscape. 2015.

Dr. Edward F. Group III, DC, NP, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM has studied natural healing methods for over 20 years and now teaches individuals and practitioners all around the world. He no longer sees patients but solely concentrates on spreading the word of health and wellness to the global community. Under his leadership, Global Healing Center, Inc. has earned recognition as one of the largest alternative, natural and organic health resources on the Internet.

6 Facts About Pesticides That Will Make You Angry

danger pesticides

Many Americans recognize pesticides in produce as a problem, but should you really be worried? Well, it definitely pays to be aware, if nothing else. Pesticides are linked to all sorts of health problems, after all. Let me share 6 facts about pesticides that are sure to make you angry.

  1. Pesticides Have Completely Ruined Strawberries

Toxic pesticides like fumigants are all over our strawberries—even organic ones! These poisons are released into the soil to kill off diseases, weeds, and pests before they become a problem, but now you’re left with a toxic gas in the environment—and on the berries. Fumigants are also linked to cancer. [1] Is that really something you want in your body? And while the USDA is researching alternatives, no projects are looking at strawberries. [2]

  1. Pesticides Are Destroying Male Fertility

So if strawberries are treated with fumigants, it stands to reason other fruits and vegetables use pesticides as well. When it comes to pesticides, though, there’s no such thing as safe conventional produce, but avocado, sweet corn, and pineapple seem to have the lowest residue levels. [3] But residues could even be harming male fertility. A study suggested men who eat lots of produce could have sperm counts 50% lower than men who consume smaller amounts of vegetables and fruits, and that the men who at the most fruits containing pesticides experienced 32% more abnormally shaped sperm. [4]

     3. Pesticides Are Polluting the Water Supply

In the Midwest, where farming can be big business, fertilizer runoff is polluting the water supply. Iowa’s largest water utility is even “threatening to sue three rural counties” under the Federal Clean Water Act because of drinking water contamination. [5] The main concern here is nitrates in the water, which could poison—even kill—infants. Pesticides are such a widespread problem that they’re even making their way into our oceans. Whale meat from Norway was imported to Japan; tests confirmed that it had twice the legal limit of the toxins. [6]

  1. Pesticides Are Ruining Good Wine

In some places, toxic pesticides have even made drinking to escape your problems impractical. Take some wines in France, for instance. A report found that some “300 French wines from the 2007 and 2008 vintages of the Rhône and the wider Aquitaine region,” 90 percent of those had pesticide contamination. [7]

  1. Pesticides Lead to Antibiotic Resistance

A recent study suggested glyphosate—the main ingredient in the weed killer Roundup—and two other common herbicides (2,4-D and dicamba) could be connected to antibiotic resistance. [8] After exposure to the toxins, bacteria reacted differently to common antibiotics like ampicillin, ciprofloxacin, and tetracycline. And with glyphosate also recently ruled “possibly carcinogenic to humans” by the World Health Organization (WHO), this latest study is just one more reason to stay away from herbicides. [9]

  1. Pesticides Linked to Autism

Clearly, glyphosate is bad news, but Monsanto Company—its creator—doesn’t think so: it even wants a retraction of that WHO report! But it’s not just cancer that could be a concern; one study suggested that because of glyphosate toxicity in our food supply, 1 in 2 children will have autism by the year 2025. [10] That’s a radical claim, yes, but also a potentially devastating one that can’t be ignored.

One Final Thought

We can’t even rely on the government to protect us. The EPA just says to not worry about pesticide exposure; the agency has even set “tolerance levels” for the consumer—how reassuring. And, in many cases, the laws about pesticides aren’t even being enforced. In Europe, however, they’re trying to further regulate toxic pesticides, and the U.S. is having a fit. After all, if Europe were to strictly regulate the toxins, the U.S. could stand to lose out on a multi-billion dollar import business. Unfortunately, even when our health is on the line, our government can only see dollar signs.

What do you think about pesticides? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below.

References:

  1. Weisenburger, D. Human health effects of agrichemical use. Human Pathology. 24 (6).
  2. United States Department of Agriculture. National Program 308: Methyl Bromide Alternatives. United States Department of Agriculture.
  3. Environmental Working Group. EWG’s 2015 Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce™. Environmental Working Group.
  4. Chiu, Y. H. et al. Fruit and vegetable intake and their pesticide residues in relation to semen quality among men from a fertility clinic. Human Reproduction.
  5. Rao, M. A closely watched fight brewing over nitrates in Iowa water. Star Tribune.
  6. The Japan Times. Norway whale meat dumped in Japan after pesticide finding. The Japan Times.
  7. Sciolino, E. In France, Pesticides Get in Way of Natural Wines. New York Times.
  8. Kurenbach, B. et al. Sublethal Exposure to Commercial Formulations of the Herbicides Dicamba, 2,4-Dichlorophenoxyacetic Acid, and Glyphosate Cause Changes in Antibiotic Susceptibility in Escherichia coli and Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium. mBio. 6 (2).
  9. International Agency for Research on Cancer. IARC Monographs Volume 112: evaluation of five organophosphate insecticides and herbicides. World Health Organization.
  10. Alliance for Natural Health. Half of All Children Will Be Autistic by 2025, Warns Senior Research Scientist at MIT. Alliance for Natural Health.

Dr. Edward F. Group III, DC, NP, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM has studied natural healing methods for over 20 years and now teaches individuals and practitioners all around the world. He no longer sees patients but solely concentrates on spreading the word of health and wellness to the global community. Under his leadership, Global Healing Center, Inc. has earned recognition as one of the largest alternative, natural and organic health resources on the Internet.

6 Toxins That Destroy Your Thyroid

thyroid

Some people believe that the thyroid is the “heart” of the endocrine system. As one of the largest endocrine glands, it plays an important role in maintaining energy levels and secreting hormones—among other things. When the thyroid’s working properly, it’s business as usual. Unfortunately, nasty chemicals can play a huge role in problems.

The Dangers of Thyroid Toxins

Toxins are present in our environment, and there’s very little we can do to eliminate all of them. We can, however, limit our exposure to toxic compounds, reducing the likelihood of experiencing issues with our thyroid. Supplementing with iodine is also an important step toward protecting your thyroid from toxic compounds. Learn these 6 toxins that can destroy your thyroid so you can prepare yourself.

  1. BPA

As an endocrine disruptor, BPA can affect hormone levels and throw thyroid function out of whack. While there are many studies documenting BPA’s effects on the thyroid in adults and children, a recent one took a different approach. [1] By looking at newborns and their mothers, the study suggested higher levels of BPA cause a decrease in thyroid function in women. All of the baby boys, though, had an increase in thyroid function from the higher levels of BPA. [2] The theory here is that the women—while pregnant—saw a drop in thyroid function and the sons’ thyroids overcompensated. While the trend did not carry over to newborn girls, avoiding BPA while pregnant just makes sense.

     2. Bromine

Bromine is toxic to the thyroid, but with it in everything from pool cleaner to pasta, finding something without the endocrine disruptor can be tricky. [3] Often, even healthy patients can have high levels of the flame-retardant substance in their bodies. Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) are even finding their way into the breast milk of American women. [4] One common source of bromine is brominated vegetable oil—which is still found in many drinks—so remember, it pays to read those labels!

  1. Perchlorate

Studies suggest low thyroid function in mothers is linked to neurodevelopmental problems in children. While BPA—as mentioned in number 1—or any score of nasty toxins could be the cause of an unhealthy thyroid, perchlorate is definitely one of the usual suspects. [5] [6] But while there are numerous studies linking it with thyroid problems, the FDA still approved it for use as an anti-static agent in food packaging, making avoiding it a lot more difficult. [7]

  1. Pesticides

When it comes to maintaining a healthy thyroid, avoiding pesticides could also be key. In India, thyroid disorders are on the rise, but there are measures in place to make sure much of the population has sufficient access to iodine, something essential for thyroid function. One recent study suggested this spike is due to pesticide and other chemical exposure, with experts noting almost 60 percent of cases aren’t connected to iodine-deficiency. [8] While the idea of pesticide exposure and thyroid problems is nothing new, maintaining iodine levels and avoiding pesticides could be the perfect combination. [9]

  1. PFCs

There’s a report that a higher level of perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs) in the blood could affect thyroid function in women. [10] Used in the manufacturing of lots of common things, PFCs can even be found in pizza boxes and takeout containers; your mattress might even contain them! Even though the use of the chemicals is being phased out in the U.S., imported products could still be a concern. [11] Endocrine disruptors like PFCs take a long time to break down in the body, so this study is disturbing, to say the least.

  1. Fluoride

Almost 70 percent of the U.S. water supply is fluoridated to help prevent cavities. Many people don’t know, however, that fluoride was actually prescribed as a remedy for an overactive thyroid during the first half of the 20th century. According to some reports, 2 to 5 mg of fluoride per day over a period of months was all it took to lower thyroid function; this becomes a problem when you realize that’s about the same amount people drinking fluoridated water are exposed to daily. [12]

Some Other Tips to Think About

You want to make sure your thyroid is as healthy as possible, so make sure you’re aware of just what can be dangerous. To protect your health, be sure to eat foods that support thyroid health as much as you can. While your family history can also play a role in endocrine problems, avoiding toxic exposure is a smart way to go.

When it comes to protecting your thyroid, how do you avoid toxins? Tell us about it in the comments.

References:

  1. Meeker, J. & Ferguson, K. Relationship between Urinary Phthalate and Bisphenol A Concentrations and Serum Thyroid Measures in U.S. Adults and Adolescents from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 2007–2008. Environmental Health Perspectives. 119 (10).
  2. Chevrier, J. et al. Maternal urinary bisphenol a during pregnancy and maternal and neonatal thyroid function in the CHAMACOS study. Environmental Health Perspectives. 121 (1).
  3. Allain, P. et al. Bromine and thyroid hormone activity. Journal of Clinical Pathology. 46 (5).
  4. Schecter, A. et al. Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in U.S. mothers’ milk. Environmental Health Perspectives. 111 (14).
  5. Martin, JJ. et al. Maternal Hypothyroxinemia in Early Pregnancy Predicts Reduced Performance in Reaction Time Tests in 5- to 6-Year-Old Offspring. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. 98 (4).
  6. Wollf, J. Perchlorate and the thyroid gland. Pharmacology Review. 50 (1).
  7. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Threshold of Regulation (TOR) Exemptions. U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
  8. Nambudiri, S. Rise in thyroid cases in state related to pesticides, finds study. The Times of India.
  9. Goldner, W. et al. Pesticide Use and Thyroid Disease Among Women in the Agricultural Health Study. American Journal of Epidemiology. 171 (4).
  10. Wen, L. L. et al. Association between serum perfluorinated chemicals and thyroid function in U.S. adults: the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2007-2010. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. 98 (9).
  11. National Resources Defense Council. Groups Petition FDA to Ban Toxic Chemicals Used in Pizza Boxes and Other Food Packaging. National Resources Defense Council.
  12. Galletti P, et. al. Effect of fluorine on thyroidal iodine metabolism in hyperthyroidism. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology. 18 (10).

Dr. Edward F. Group III, DC, NP, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM has studied natural healing methods for over 20 years and now teaches individuals and practitioners all around the world. He no longer sees patients but solely concentrates on spreading the word of health and wellness to the global community. Under his leadership, Global Healing Center, Inc. has earned recognition as one of the largest alternative, natural and organic health resources on the Internet.

7 Toxins Harming Your Brain Right Now

Brain X-ray001

Some of the most common substances found in everyday life are harming our cognitive function right now. Along with pesticides, you have substances like BPA, phthalates, mercury, lead, benzene, and flame retardants that are affecting you, even if you don’t realize it. Hidden in your home and office, you are exposed to toxic chemicals on a daily basis, and your brain is taking the brunt of it.

7 Toxins Harming Your Brain

Your brain controls every aspect of your body, giving directions to cells and the nervous system. It is essential for supporting good mood and clear thinking, helping to improve your overall quality of life. Here are seven of the most harmful and pervasive toxins you should look out for in order to support brain health.

  1. BPA

BPA is a known endocrine disruptor that interferes with how your body regulates hormones. Not only does it affect reproductive health, but it can also affect brain function, learning abilities, and how your memory works. [1] And it’s not just plastic that contains BPA; items that are BPA free aren’t always much better. The substitutes used for BPA (Bisphenol F and S or “BPF” and “BPS”) have been linked to behavioral issues, as well. [2]

     2. Phthalates

Phthalates are present in more everyday things than you might think. Similarly to BPA, phthalates are found in many products that contain plastic and things like household cleaners, cosmetics, personal hygiene products, and even food. There is a wide variety of phthalates, but the most notable versions are BBzP (butyl benzyl phthalate), DnBP (dibutyl phthalate), and DEHB (di-2-ethyl hexyl phthalate).

Phthalates have been linked to ADHD, asthma, diabetes, neurodevelopmental problems, and more. [3] California is spearheading the move against phthalates by asking that four specific types must be listed on labels (many do not have to be listed at all). Even big corporations like Target and WalMart have promised to reduce the amount of or even eradicate the use of harmful toxins like phthalates in products they stock.

  1. Mercury

I’ve covered the dangers of mercury extensively in other articles. The base reason is that it has been linked to kidney problems, respiratory failure, and other neuromuscular complications; however, the elemental form of mercury is the most toxic. [4] Due to this knowledge, many people have switched off from thermometers and other products containing mercury.

  1. Lead

Lead poisoning isn’t a problem of yesterday, it’s a problem today — a huge problem. The biggest issue is that lead affects so many parts of the body in such harmful ways. Not only can it affect organs and tissues, but it can affect whole systems of the body like the digestive, reproductive, and nervous systems. You absolutely need to take conscious steps to reduce your exposure to lead, including making your home safer for your children.

  1. Benzene

Benzene is found in fuel and motor vehicle exhaust, but can also be found in detergents and pharmaceuticals. [5] Why is something so problematic used so frequently? Benzene is even classified as carcinogen, [6] it’s highly flammable, and benzene poisoning can pass from mother to fetus. The best way to reduce your exposure to benzene is to distance yourself from gasoline or waste plants and to avoid cigarette smoke at all costs. As quoted by the CDC, “Average smokers take in about 10 times more benzene than nonsmokers each day.” [7] Just one more reason not to smoke!

  1. Flame Retardants

Normally, something that helps to quell a fire is heralded as useful and sometimes heroic. However, a disturbing discovery was made by a researcher from Texas. The discovery showed that flame retardants were found in the breast milk of American women. [8] How could this happen? It turns out that flame retardants can be found virtually anywhere in food, furniture, and building materials. We’re around these items every day and breathe in the toxins that emanate throughout the day.

Attributed to the spread of human civilization, it’s unbelievable just how widespread traces of flame retardant chemicals are. Not even bald eagles are safe. Out of 33 dead eagles tested from 2009 to 2011, every one but two had all four flame retardant components for which scientists were testing. [9] It’s important to educate yourself about flame retardant compounds and make sure they’re not abundant in your home. [10]

  1. Pesticides

Mostly everyone is familiar with the negative effects of pesticides, but new developments further strengthen the argument against using pesticides on foods we consume. Perhaps the biggest and most shocking development to come to light is that pesticide exposure is now linked to Parkinson’s disease. [11] The best way to avoid undue exposure to pesticides is to choose organic food!

Protecting Your Brain

Now that you’re a bit more informed about seven toxins you might not have known about before, you can get started on protecting yourself from the harmful effects, both short term and long term. Turmeric shows powerful antioxidant protection for the brain, and it’s often advised to take this in extract form to ensure best results. Eating an organic diet, reducing the use of furniture made with flame retardants, and using glass containers instead of plastic are also helpful steps.

References:

  1. Nordqvist, Christian. What is BPA (bisphenol A)? Is BPA harmful? Medical News Today. MediLexicon, Intl., 26 Sep. 2014.
  2. Ketchiff, Mirel. The Scary Truth About BPA-Free Plastic. SHAPE. 2015.
  3. Westervelt, Amy. Phthalates are everywhere, and the health risks are worrying. How bad are they really? The Guardian. 2015.
  4. EPA. Health Effects of Mercury. EPA.gov. 2014.
  5. EPA. Benzene. EPA.gov. 2013.
  6. ATSDR. Benzene. ATSDR. 2011.
  7. ATSDR. Public Health Statement for Benzene. CDC.gov. 2015.
  8. Blum, Deborah. Flame Retardants are Everywhere. NY Times. 2014.
  9. Betts, Kellyn S. More Evidence for PBDEs as Neurotoxicants: Cohort Study Corroborates Earlier Findings. EHP. 2014.
  10. Bienkowski, Brian. Michigan’s Bald Eagles Full of Flame Retardants. Environmental Health News. 2015.
  11. Bret Stetka. Parkinson’s Disease and Pesticides: What’s the Connection? Scientific American.

Dr. Edward F. Group III, DC, NP, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM has studied natural healing methods for over 20 years and now teaches individuals and practitioners all around the world. He no longer sees patients but solely concentrates on spreading the word of health and wellness to the global community. Under his leadership, Global Healing Center, Inc. has earned recognition as one of the largest alternative, natural and organic health resources on the Internet.

5 Unsettling Things In Your Drinking Water

cloudy-water-background-images-blueglass1

The public water supply doesn’t just provide us with the water we drink. We use this water to take a shower, to water our plants, and to wash our pets. Water is essential, but the majority of our water supply is full of nasty compounds that are slowly destroying our health, whether we realize it or not. Without the proper filtration system in place, you are being exposed to a large supply of chemical toxins, including pesticides, pharmaceutical medications, and even animal excrement.

5 Nasty Things in Your Water

This post is not just meant to gross you out, it’s meant to inspire positive action in your own home. By reading the following facts about the water you’re drinking and showering in, you’ll be shocked and hopefully lulled into switching to a cleaner source of water. Here are some of the facts you need to know about the water you are exposed to every day.

1. Pesticides Are Invading Our Water

Pesticide and fertilizer runoff is a serious concern in many states, especially recently for the Midwestern states. [1] Pesticides infiltrate every aspect of our life already; our food, clothes, and indoor environments are sprayed with the chemicals. Even if you are consuming an organic diet, not having the proper precautions in place for your drinking water can still, unfortunately, expose you to the toxins you are attempting to avoid.

2. Medications Find Their Way into Drinking Water

Studies have been consistently showing that our water supply is being contaminated with pharmaceutical medications. [2] Antibiotics and antidepressants are commonly found in trace amounts in drinking water these days, possibly contributing to a host of issues. Having antibiotics in your system for a prolonged period, for example, can increase the risk of becoming resistant to antibiotics, potentially compromising your future health in the rare case of illness. Antidepressants, when consumed through the drinking water in small amounts over a long period of time, may also have unseen interactions with proper brain chemistry.

3. Phthalate Water, Anyone?

Phthalates are common chemicals found in plastics, typically used to improve flexibility. They are easily released into the environment, and some research suggests they may be carcinogenic. [3] Other research is showing that phthalates may negatively affect thyroid health which, in turn, affects hormones, weight, and mood. [4]

4. Animal Poop is Hiding in Your Water

You probably don’t want to hear this, but it’s best to know now: animal poop may be lurking somewhere in your water. Of course, it’s just trace amounts; however, isn’t any amount considered unacceptable? A recent study reported that pig excrement and bacteria were found in North Carolina drinking water, so if you live near here, you probably want to contact your local officials to get more information about the water you and your family are drinking. [5]

5. Arsenic Pollutes California Water

A new report shows that California’s public drinking water violated safety requirements more than 1,000 times for the fiscal year of 2012-2013, citing high levels of nitrates and arsenic. [6] Arsenic can cause skin issues and increase cancer risk, so any level of this contaminant in drinking water is totally unacceptable.

Actions You Can Take

Investing in a high-quality water filter is the best way to keep your water clean and free of contaminants. Distilled water is also a great water source that has been purified and can be a great addition if you haven’t yet transitioned to an at-home water filter. Even filtering the water you bathe in can be helpful for decreasing the chemicals you are exposed to on a daily basis. Be sure to continue eating a healthy diet that is rich in antioxidants because these compounds will help protect your body from toxins already present in your environment.

References:

  1. Maya Rao. A closely watched fight brewing over nitrates in Iowa water. StarTribune.
  2. Ben Sutherly. Unused meds go down the drain, worrying environmentalists. The Columbus Dispatch.
  3. Lopez-Carrillo L, Hernandez-Ramirez RU, Calafat AM, et al. Exposure to phthalates and breast cancer risk in northern Mexico. Environ Health Perspect. 2010 Apr;118(4):539-44. doi: 10.1289/ehp.0901091.
  4. Li, N, D Wang, Y Zhou, M Ma, J li and Z Wang. Phthalates in drinking water affect thyroid hormone, finds lab study. Environmental Science and Technology. doi: 10.1021/es101254c.
  5. Brian Bienkowski. Pig poop fouling North Carolina streams; state permitting questioned. Environmental Health News.
  6. Sharon Bernstein. Arsenic, nitrates among pollutants in California drinking water: report. Reuters.

Dr. Edward F. Group III, DC, NP, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM has studied natural healing methods for over 20 years and now teaches individuals and practitioners all around the world. He no longer sees patients but solely concentrates on spreading the word of health and wellness to the global community. Under his leadership, Global Healing Center, Inc. has earned recognition as one of the largest alternative, natural and organic health resources on the Internet.

Poisoned Earth, Poisoned Children

pesticides

For decades, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has known that Dow’s chlorpyrifos pesticide, marketed under names like Dursban and Lorsban, is dangerous to children and farmworkers. And yet, the EPA has allowed the continued use of this dangerous pesticide on golf courses, on parks and on farms—where it drifts onto food. In her recent article, “Pesticides, Birth Defects and Brain Damage in Children,” Dr. Janette Sherman, MD, says that chlorpyrifos “is a serious risk to health and intellect for people working and living in proximity to fields.” Sherman also said that detectable levels of chlorpyrifos in New York City children raises the question of exposure via food. According to Sherman:

Although the neurotoxicity of pesticides has been known for decades, recently, several national magazines, have named the pesticide, chlorpyrifos (Dursban/ Lorsban), as an agent causing loss of intelligence, as well as birth defects and structural brain damage.

Known to damage children’s brains, Dow’s chlorpyrifos is now up for review by the EPA. Will the EPA finally ban Dow’s chlorpyrifos? Or will the agency continue to allow Big Ag to poison our children? Tell the EPA: Stop Letting Dow Chemical Poison our Children with Chlorpyrifos!

Do You Know These 6 Skin Facts?

skin

Day in and day out, your skin gets exposed to a lot — toxins included. Because of that, you want to protect it. Protecting your skin in this day and age is something that should be applauded, so keep on doing what you’re doing! But in case you aren’t as careful with skin care as you should be, I want to share these 6 facts about your skin so you can get a better idea of what it’s exposed to on a daily basis.

6 Basic Skin Facts You Should Know

Your skin is the largest organ of your body, and it is under constant assault by a variety of environmental toxins. UV light from the sun, pollution, and chemicals in our water can all take their toll. Here are a few skin facts you should know, including how to protect it.

1. Indoor Tanning Increases Cancer Risk

Many people already suspect indoor tanning is dangerous; in fact, there’s a growing body of evidence suggesting that it can lead to cancer. A recent review examining current literature on tanning beds noted: “…tanning beds account for as many as 400,000 cases of skin cancer in the United States each year.” [1] And while there are other factors involved in a cancer diagnosis, high doses of UV light from tanning and a person’s age could be big contributors. The World Health Organization (WHO) found indoor tanning “before age 30 was associated with a 75 percent increase in the risk of melanoma.” [2]

2. FDA Classifies Tanning Beds as Harmful

Once classed as low-risk, tanning beds and sunlamps are now moderate-risk devices, and more warnings have been put in place for children under 18. [3] It’s something, sure, but is it really enough? Despite the age warning and an increase in skin cancer cases in teens and young adults, over half of the nation’s top colleges still offer tanning beds on- or off-campus. [4]

3. It Might Be Best to Avoid Tattoos

You might want to think twice about that tattoo — not because it will upset your mother, but recent reports from New Zealand have suggested there are toxins in the dyes. High levels of arsenic and lead were found in some imported inks. [5] But before you decide on that temporary tattoo instead, “black henna” — not the true reddish henna — tattoos contain dye with p-phenylenediamine (PPD). This ingredient can cause “nasty allergic reactions in some people, including redness, blisters, oozing lesions, increased sensitivity to sunlight and permanent scarring.” [6] Yikes — maybe it’s best to just avoid tattoos altogether.

4. Smoking, and the City, Are Terrible for Your Skin

It seems like everywhere we look, there are products to help us look younger. But did you know if you smoke, you might be drastically aging your skin? A recent study had three people examine 79 photos of identical twins in their forties. The three participants identified the twin who smoked as older 57 percent of the time. [7] The non-smoking twin was also less likely to develop wrinkles around the lips. If you want to keep that youthful look, living in the city could be fairly risky, too. The culprit here: air pollution. Air pollution found in most cities could contain up to 200 chemicals that age your skin. [8]

5. Sunblock Isn’t Total Protection

We wear sunblock to protect our skin from UV radiation, but recent reports suggest that might not be enough. Something as high as SPF 50 can slow the cancer risk, sure, but it won’t take it away. This is definitely more reason to make sure you have the proper sun protection. [9] As if that news wasn’t bad enough, another study reported 2 chemicals in sunscreen can also affect male fertility by up to 30 percent. [10]

6. Your Skin Can Absorb BPA and Other Chemicals

Your skin can absorb quite a bit — even, it seems, toxins like BPA. Receipts printed on thermal paper and the powder that is used to develop the dyes typically contain BPA. We handle the receipts, and, because of this, more and more people actually have elevated levels of BPA. [11] That risk for BPA exposure really increases when you use hand sanitizer. Just how much? “Touching thermal paper after using hand sanitizer can increase the amount of BPA absorbed […] 100-fold.” [12]

Further Actions

With all these risks, what can we do? Well, certainly it pays to be proactive, and with all the technology available to us, it’s easier than ever. Jumping on the craze we have with taking selfies, a scientist recently made a polarized lens you can attach to your phone to detect skin cancer. [13] What do you think? Does that sound like something you could use?

References:

  1. Wehner, MR. et al. International prevalence of indoor tanning: a systematic review and meta-analysis. JAMA Dermatology. 150 (5).
  2. El Ghissassi, F. et al. A review of human carcinogens—Part D: radiation. Lancet Oncology. 10 (8).
  3. U.S. Food & Drug Administration. FDA to require warnings on sunlamp products. U.S. Food & Drug Administration.
  4. Pagoto, S. et al. Availability of Tanning Beds on US College Campuses. JAMA Dermatology. 151 (1).
  5. Ministry of Health. Survey of Selected Samples of Tattoo Inks for the Presence of Heavy Metals 2013. Ministry of Health.
  6. U.S. Food & Drug Administration. Temporary Tattoos May Put You at Risk. U.S. Food & Drug Administration.
  7. Okada, H. et al. Facial Changes Caused by Smoking: A Comparison between Smoking and Nonsmoking Identical Twins. Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery. 132 (5).
  8. Spencer, B. Polluted urban air will make you age 10 per cent faster than in the country new research shows. The Daily Mail.
  9. Cook. M. et al. Ultraviolet radiation accelerates BRAF-driven melanomagenesis by targeting TP53. Nature. 511.
  10. Louis, G. et al. Urinary Concentrations of Benzophenone-Type Ultraviolet Radiation Filters and Couples’ Fecundity. American Journal of Epidemiology. 180 (12).
  11. Ehrlich, S. et al. Handling of Thermal Receipts as a Source of Exposure to Bisphenol A. JAMA. 311 (8).
  12. Hormann, A. et al. Holding Thermal Receipt Paper and Eating Food after Using Hand Sanitizer Results in High Serum Bioactive and Urine Total Levels of Bisphenol A (BPA). PLOS ONE.
  13. McRae, T. Smart phone attachment detects skin cancer. 3 News.

Dr. Edward F. Group III, DC, NP, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM has studied natural healing methods for over 20 years and now teaches individuals and practitioners all around the world. He no longer sees patients but solely concentrates on spreading the word of health and wellness to the global community. Under his leadership, Global Healing Center, Inc. has earned recognition as one of the largest alternative, natural and organic health resources on the Internet.

Is Sugar Toxic?

Sugar

There’s been a lot of talk in recent years about the dangers of refined sugars like corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, sucrose, and more. After decades of research, it appears the serious adverse effects of refined sugars on human health are finally making their way into mainstream attention. According to the CDC, more than 30% of adult Americans are obese. [1] These numbers exploded after health officials began pushing the high-carb, low-fat diet twenty years ago.

The Truth About Sugar

Decades of study on obesity, type II diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and hormone dysfunction reveal sugar isn’t just dangerous, [2] [3] it’s absolutely toxic. While it’s true that our cells rely on glucose for energy, our body in no way requires refined sugar for proper functioning. Despite this, food manufacturers continue to look for new ways to sneak sugar into every last food sold on market shelves. Here’s just a few reasons why you should reduce–if not eliminate–sugar from your diet:

You Can’t See A Natural Sugar

When it comes to sugar, if it’s not a natural component of the food (like a banana, apple, or honey), chances are it’s not a natural dietary sugar. Any sugar extracted from its plant source, processed, and added to food for sweetening purposes is considered refined. This includes the spoonful of raw, organic table sugar many people put in their coffee each morning. Natural sugars occur as starches and complex sugars and are bound to vitamins and minerals. The digestive process uses these nutrients to break this natural sugar down into monosaccharides, a usable nutrient.

Fruits and vegetables don’t have the same effect on blood sugar as a candy bar for most healthy individuals because fiber in produce tends to slow down the rate at which the sugars are digested and absorbed. Table sugar is created by separating sugar molecules, glucose, sucrose, fructose, etc., from their plant nutrients. This converts them into pure, refined, and empty carbohydrates.

Your Daily Poison

We know sugar eats through the enamel of teeth and causes cavities, but its damage doesn’t stop there. Sugar leaves a path of destruction as it passes through the body, causing inflammation and degradation to blood vessels. It also disrupts the digestive process. When sugar mixes with starches in the stomach, fermentation takes place, creating carbon dioxide, acetic acid, alcohol, and water. Carbon dioxide, acetic acid, and alcohol are all toxic substances.

Sugar causes digesting protein to petrify and creates ptomaines and leucomaines, toxic protein substances. Sugars also kill the ‘friendly’ bacteria that create vitamin B12, an essential nutrient for energy creation at the cellular level. Symptoms of B12 deficiency include depression, psychosis, stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, and heart disease.

As I mentioned earlier, refined sugars have no nutritional value and lack the nutrients needed to encourage digestion. So, the body must steal these nutrients from other processes to digest sugar. This creates nutrient imbalances and deficiencies. From there, the sugar enters the blood stream.

Sugar Rots from the Inside Out

We know high blood sugar causes diabetes, but long before a pre-diabetic condition develops, widespread damage has already occurred. It all starts with one singular component–insulin. The pancreas releases insulin to trigger cells throughout the body to absorb glucose–a monosaccharide sugar–from the blood. The more constant this release of insulin, the more the cells stop listening to it. The liver then takes the excess glucose, converts it to glycogen, and stores it.

As sugar consumption continues, the liver swells and becomes damaged. This condition is known as fatty liver disease, and it’s on the rise wherever the modern carb-based diet is practiced. When the liver can no longer take the glucose, it gets sent to fat cells for storage. Weight gain and modern diseases follow.

Recent research done by Louisiana State University report those who consume sugar-sweetened beverages have a much higher risk of weight gain, type II diabetes, cardiovascular, and metabolic disease. The reason for this has been identified as the sugar load.

But this shouldn’t surprise us. Dr. Weston Price reported decades ago how primitive societies had good teeth and superior health to those in civilized societies on modern diets. Once a group of indigenous peoples were assimilated into modern society, individuals experienced physical degeneration and the onset of chronic disease all within one generation.

How to Avoid Sugar

Those who have given up sugar report greater energy, a more positive mood, and successful weight loss. Plus, abstaining from sugar also reduces the risk of many diseases linked to sugar consumption, like diabetes, obesity, hyperactivity, attention deficit disorder, cardiovascular disease, depression, skin disorders, allergies, eye problems, kidney failure, osteoporosis, high blood pressure, hormone imbalance, accelerated aging, and cancer. To go sugar free, avoid it for two weeks. If you’re really ambitious, go for a month. Eat only natural, organic foods, and only use stevia whenever you are wanting to sweeten a beverage.

Here’s a list of refined sugars to look out for when you’re going sugar free:

  • Maltodextrin
  • Beet Sugar
  • Cane Juice
  • Rice Syrup
  • Maple Syrup
  • Cane Syrup
  • Dextrose
  • Fruit Juice Concentrate
  • Corn Syrup
  • Sucrose
  • High Fructose Corn Syrup

Have you given up sugar? How has it made you feel? And did you find it easy or difficult? Share your experiences with us below.

References:

  1. Davy BM1, Zoellner JM2, Waters CN3, Bailey AN2, Hill JL2.. Associations Among Chronic Disease Status, Participation in Federal Nutrition Programs, Food Insecurity, and Sugar-Sweetened Beverage and Water Intake Among Residents of a Health-Disparate Region. J Nutr Educ Behav. 2015 Feb 9. pii: S1499-4046(15)00004-4. doi: 10.1016/j.jneb.2015.01.001.
  2. Kostecka M1. Eating habits of preschool children and the risk of obesity, insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome in adults. Pak J Med Sci. 2014 Nov-Dec;30(6):1299-303. doi: 10.12669/pjms.306.5792.
  3. Bray GA1. Soft drink consumption and obesity: it is all about fructose. Curr Opin Lipidol. 2010 Feb;21(1):51-7. doi: 10.1097/MOL.0b013e3283346ca2.

Dr. Edward F. Group III, DC, NP, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM has studied natural healing methods for over 20 years and now teaches individuals and practitioners all around the world. He no longer sees patients but solely concentrates on spreading the word of health and wellness to the global community. Under his leadership, Global Healing Center, Inc. has earned recognition as one of the largest alternative, natural and organic health resources on the Internet.

 

Why You Should Never Microwave Your Food

microwave

Microwaving is a simple, convenient cooking option for people on the go. The microwave oven has been a mainstay in the US for 30+ years, virtually transforming society and how we view food. But despite its wonders, the question that’s been avoided remains: are microwaves the healthiest cooking option? The answer is, of course, no, as there are much better options available that will ensure nutrients will remain in your food.

How Does Microwaving Work?

Before we dive into the research on the possible effects and safety of microwave ovens, let’s clarify what a microwave is. A microwave is a form of non-ionizing radiation. As a matter of contrast, ionizing radiation changes the electromagnetic nature of atoms, or ionizes them. This alters the way they interact with other atoms and molecules around them. X-rays, gamma radiation, and nuclear medicine (CT scans, barium swallows, and mammograms) are types of ionizing radiation. Your food is being zapped by high-frequency waves of heat, and some people argue that this radiation can be harmful to your health.

One study by Dr. Hans Hertel explored how microwaves change the molecular structure of food and the effects of that food on the human body. In his study, he found that individuals who consumed the microwaved foods experienced a decrease in HDL cholesterol, a reduced red blood cell count, and fewer white blood cells. Unfortunately, no studies have been conducted since to replicate Dr. Hertel’s findings, so it would be reaching to conclude that microwaving does indeed deteriorate health. Still, there are other cooking options that may be far better at retaining the nutritive quality of food.

The Best Cooking Options for Maintaining Nutrition

Microwaving cooks the food at very high temperatures in a very short amount of time. This results in a great deal of nutrient loss for most foods, especially vegetables. Our foods are also subjected to nutrient loss when we boil, fry, or roast our food. Boiling vegetables, for example, leeches most of the nutrients (including antioxidants) into the water. The best option for cooking vegetables that will result in only a minor loss of nutrients is steaming. Sautéing and baking at low temperatures is also a viable option that will retain more nutrients than microwaving, boiling, or frying. Of course, by making the majority of your diet raw, with some added dietary fat to help absorb the fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, and K), you’ll ensure a high level of nutrient intake.

Adding To the Toxic Load

When it comes specifically to microwaves, damage to the food itself isn’t the only concern. Many microwavable foods are processed and in packaging that contains an assortment of chemicals. Chemicals found in many of these containers include benzene, toluene, polyethylene terpthalate (PET), xylene, and dioxins (known carcinogens). At high temperatures, it is likely that chemicals can absorb into the food, and intake of these chemicals presents a high health risk. What’s more, the chemicals in the food themselves are also a cause for concern.

Perhaps one of the most dangerous contaminants in microwavable food is BPA. A watchdog report from the Milwaukee-Journal Sentinel found this estrogen-like plastic leaked from all packaging into the food tested. [1] BPA disrupts normal hormone activity. Infertility, low-libido, cardiac disease, mental disorders, allergies, high blood pressure, and weight gain have all been linked to BPA exposure. The simple fact is, when you use a microwave, you’re getting a lot more than the food you eat.

One Final Thought

Over the last 30 years, the science and research has come a long way to understand how microwaves affect proteins, antioxidants, and overall nutrient content of food. We’ve also learned how many toxins flood our food when zapped in the packaging. Today we shouldn’t be surprised by these dangers. Instead of microwaving, stick to raw foods as the primary aspect of your diet. When you do cook, try steaming and baking as your main cooking methods.

Have you given up your microwave? Is there anyone who has never used one? Share your experiences with us.

-Dr. Edward F. Group III, DC, NP, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM

References:

  1. Susanne Rust and Meg Kissinger. BPA leaches from ‘safe’ products. Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinel.

Dr. Edward F. Group III, DC, NP, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM has studied natural healing methods for over 20 years and now teaches individuals and practitioners all around the world. He no longer sees patients but solely concentrates on spreading the word of health and wellness to the global community. Under his leadership, Global Healing Center, Inc. has earned recognition as one of the largest alternative, natural and organic health resources on the Internet.

 

The Importance Of Organic Carpet Cleaners

Vacuum cleaner brush

Every time toxic cleaners are used, there’s a heavy impact on our environment. It does not matter whether the cleaners are poured, sprayed, washed, rinsed, or dumped; the harmful effects are the same. When we use these things we risk adding toxins to the air and to the water, both of which come back to us and are shared with the public. If you are not sure whether your cleaning products are harmful to you and the environment, take a look at the product labels to see the various types of chemical ingredients that are listed. What you find might surprise you!

Some products you may want to review are your carpet cleaners. For many of the cleaning needs today, there are healthier, organic alternatives for the usual toxic products. Carpet cleaners are no different. If you are concerned about this issue, and would like to use products that are healthier for you and the environment, consider switching to organic cleaning products. Organic carpet cleaners, for example, are generally dry cleaners that are much less harmful than traditional carpet cleaners.

Dangers of Non-Organic Carpet Cleaners

Most of the popular brands of carpet cleaners that are sold in stores can be quite harmful to us because they are made with chemical solvents that are very similar to the ones used by dry cleaners. The most common carpet cleaners give off powerfully strong odors that can aggravate a number of chronic respiratory conditions and allergies.

Some of the harmful ingredients that may be found in carpet cleaners include:

  • Pesticides
  • Disinfectants
  • Formaldehyde
  • Fragrances
  • Acids
  • Lye (Sodium Hydroxide)

These ingredients can cause endocrine issues, hormonal imbalance, and even infertility according to some studies. [1] In addition to these, there are a wide variety of additional compounds that are frequently found on product labels. It is helpful if you are aware of at least some of these potentially dangerous chemicals so you can avoid using them.

You’re Putting Toxic Chemicals on Toxic Materials

Carpets are often made of synthetic fibers and they’re treated with toxic chemicals that are hazardous to you and your family’s health. These carpets pose a threat to the families that have them installed as well as those who install them. Often times, those facing the greatest risks are infants, toddlers, and pets, which spend the most time breathing closest to the floor.

The following are some of the dangerous chemicals found in carpets in emissions tests:

  • Acetone
  • Benzene
  • Styrene
  • Hexane
  • Toluene
  • Formaldehyde
  • Caprolactam
  • Xylenes
  • Vinylcyclohexene
  • p-Dichlorobenzene

Many of these chemicals are carcinogenic. [2] If carpets are putting out these toxins, then people are surely breathing them in. Compound these chemicals with those in the cleanser formulas and you can begin to see the dangers present.

Why Should I Use Organic Carpet Cleaners?

Organic carpets don’t give off the noxious fumes that regular carpet can. Toxic fumes from carpet come from the synthetic fibers, the chemicals used in the manufacture, as well as the chemicals used to treat it. Your carpet padding can be treated with equally harmful chemicals. These toxic chemicals can cause allergic reactions in people and pets.

One of the main benefits of organic carpet cleaners is that they don’t pollute the air. Organic carpet cleaners are healthier for you and they’re healthier for our environment. Traditional carpet cleaners generally leave a concentrated vapor hanging in the air, which causes indoor air pollution. Indoor air pollution is a very serious concern, as it can cause sneezing, headaches, nausea, asthma attacks, irritation to the lungs, nose, and eyes, coughing, congestion, fatigue, and a host of other symptoms.

By using organic carpet cleaners, the potential for mold growth is greatly reduced. Since most organic cleaners are dry, the environment where mold spores readily sprout and flourish is minimized. Once mold develops in a carpet or carpet pad, it is nearly impossible to remove. The only alternative at that point is to replace all of it.

The most important point to remember is to be aware of the harmful chemicals that are typically found in commercially sold carpet cleaners, and make an effort to select organic carpet cleaners for the sake of your family’s health.

There are other alternatives that you can consider when you’re planning to have a greener home and work environment. For example, you could look into purchasing an organic carpet made with natural materials. A very safe carpet to purchase is one made of 100% natural wool fibers.

Carpet is not your only alternative for floor covering. Remember that alongside all-natural carpets made of wool or hemp, you can also elect to have natural wood flooring, not pressed or chipped board.

When you’re having new materials put on your floor, whether it’s wood, carpet, or some other beneficial covering, be sure to use proper backing; natural rubber is a good one. And then there’s the fixative. Sometimes the glue used can give off toxic fumes that linger for a long time after the flooring is installed. Check with your installer to make certain that he’s using the safest products for everyone.

One simple and effective product for deodorizing carpet between major cleanses is baking soda. You can sprinkle this dry substance freely over your carpet. Let is sit for as short as 30 minutes or as long as overnight; then vacuum. If you’ve ever used baking soda in your refrigerator, then you know how effective it is at removing odors. It can do the same for your carpet.

What to Consider When Cleaning Carpet

The best organic carpet cleaners are biodegradable and nontoxic. It is equally important to ensure a product’s packaging is made from 100% recycled material.

If you want your carpets to be professionally cleaned, you should know that there are professional organic carpet cleaners who specialize in natural cleaning of even the dirtiest carpets. If you have trouble locating professional organic carpet cleaners locally, try searching online to see if you can find one that is close to your area.

-Dr. Edward F. Group III, DC, NP, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM

References:

  1. Mehrpour O, Karrari P, Zamani N, Tsatsakis AM, Abdollahi M. Occupational exposure to pesticides and consequences on male semen and fertility: a review. Toxicol Lett. 2014 Oct 15;230(2):146-56. doi: 10.1016/j.toxlet.2014.01.029.
  2. McMichael AJ. Carcinogenicity of benzene, toluene and xylene: epidemiological and experimental evidence. IARC Sci Publ. 1988;(85):3-18.

Dr. Edward F. Group III, DC, NP, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM has studied natural healing methods for over 20 years and now teaches individuals and practitioners all around the world. He no longer sees patients but solely concentrates on spreading the word of health and wellness to the global community. Under his leadership, Global Healing Center, Inc. has earned recognition as one of the largest alternative, natural and organic health resources on the Internet.

 

Researchers: Everyday Exposure To Chemicals Can Trigger Early Menopause

phthalates menopause

Women who are exposed to certain chemicals are more likely to experience menopause at a younger age, according to a newly published study by a researcher from the University of Colorado School of Medicine at the Anschutz Medical Campus.

The study, published in the journal PLOS ONE, reports that women exposed to certain chemicals experienced menopause 1.9 years to 3.8 years earlier than women with lower levels of the same chemicals. Women exposed to these same chemicals were up to six times more likely to be menopausal than non-exposed women.

Natalia Grindler, MD, an instructor and fellow in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, and her fellow authors reviewed data collected by the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey between 1999 and 2008, covering 31,575 women. The survey, administered by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, covers a cross section of the U.S. population.

The researchers evaluated the levels of 111 potential chemicals present in the women surveyed and found that 15 of those chemicals, which are used in cosmetics, plastics and household cleaners, could be causing women to go through menopause early. The chemicals associated with cases of early menopause included phthalates, polychlorinated biphenyls, surfactants and organophosphate pesticides.

“Our study shows there is a clinically significant association between levels of these chemicals and the age at menopause in a large cross section of U.S. women,” Grindler said. “Early menopause is not the only negative health impact. Any early decline in ovarian function could increase rates of infertility and lead to earlier development of cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis and other medical problems among women.”

Avoiding exposure to products with these chemicals is nearly impossible, so a greater understanding of how these chemicals affect reproductive health and interact with genetic predispositions and environmental factors is needed, Grindler said.

“We support the use of an approach that captures lifestyle, behavior and other exposures from conception onward,” Grindler said. “The health of future generations is at risk and without further research in this area those born today could be affected in decades to come.”

Source:

Women who are exposed to certain chemicals are more likely to experience menopause at a younger age, according to a newly published study by a researcher from the University of Colorado School of Medicine at the Anschutz Medical Campus.

The study, published in the journal PLOS ONE, reports that women exposed to certain chemicals experienced menopause 1.9 years to 3.8 years earlier than women with lower levels of the same chemicals. Women exposed to these same chemicals were up to six times more likely to be menopausal than non-exposed women.

Natalia Grindler, MD, an instructor and fellow in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, and her fellow authors reviewed data collected by the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey between 1999 and 2008, covering 31,575 women. The survey, administered by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, covers a cross section of the U.S. population.

The researchers evaluated the levels of 111 potential chemicals present in the women surveyed and found that 15 of those chemicals, which are used in cosmetics, plastics and household cleaners, could be causing women to go through menopause early. The chemicals associated with cases of early menopause included phthalates, polychlorinated biphenyls, surfactants and organophosphate pesticides.

“Our study shows there is a clinically significant association between levels of these chemicals and the age at menopause in a large cross section of U.S. women,” Grindler said. “Early menopause is not the only negative health impact. Any early decline in ovarian function could increase rates of infertility and lead to earlier development of cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis and other medical problems among women.”

Avoiding exposure to products with these chemicals is nearly impossible, so a greater understanding of how these chemicals affect reproductive health and interact with genetic predispositions and environmental factors is needed, Grindler said.

“We support the use of an approach that captures lifestyle, behavior and other exposures from conception onward,” Grindler said. “The health of future generations is at risk and without further research in this area those born today could be affected in decades to come.”

Source: University of Colorado Denver
h/t: Natural Blaze

 

Autism Is Increasing. Why?

 bpa-alternative-harmful

 bpa-alternative-harmful

Many years ago I was exposed to ozone gas from a laser printer. After a bewildering array of medical issues was examined, it was found that I have Multiple Chemical Sensitive (MCS). After I had no more contact with the room housing the printers, I regained my health. The experience taught me to recognize my symptoms caused by toxins and to either remove the object or myself from the area. While most people show no immediate and obvious health issues, those of us with MCS are acutely aware of the toxins surrounding us. I can identify toxic items by their odor. My lips and tongue sting. When I am exposed to something that is particularly toxic my eyes water and even my teeth hurt.

I am an organic farmer and I raise earthworms to enhance my soil. For many years, I raised the earthworms in wooden boxes since I had access to untreated scrap lumber. When I moved over a thousand miles, I no longer had all the free lumber so I used some plastic containers. The worms grew quickly and much larger but then turned white and died. After so many years of success I was puzzled. Then I started to think about the plastic containers I had used. I switched to boxes made from untreated lumber and once again I had healthy earthworms.

Autism is on the rise. There are many theories about this troubling trend. My MCS and a recent experience with polyurethane led me to ponder if there was a connection between plastics that cause my toxic symptoms and this syndrome that was largely unknown before the widespread use of plastics.

We got a new bed for our dog. I immediately experienced watering eyes, tingling lips and a headache. The tag revealed that the dog bed was stuffed with polyurethane. I have also noticed that I have similar symptoms when around stuffed toys in the stores. I have checked the tags and they are stuffed with polyurethane fibers. There are 60 different chemicals used in making plastic. They are for different strengths for several uses. The scrap plastic is ground into fibers and used for stuffing. Parent won’t notice the issue unless they have MCS. Babies sleep on polyurethane foam mattresses, drink from plastic bottles and play with plastic toys and foam stuffed dolls.

I wonder if exposure to plastics at a vulnerable age could be linked to the dramatic increase in autism. This might be something that is overlooked in research. With herbicide (a hormone) found in Mothers’ Breast milk and blood can one or the combination of the two cause the predicted increase of autism to 50% of children by 2025?  This is a critical problem for the US. The medical and drug associations with the EPA are more interested in cure. Not much if any effort in finding the cause.


Donald Lewis is author of the Book, Learned by the Fencepost, Lessons in Organic Farming & Gardening. He started dairy Farming in Vermont after graduating from High School in 1946 and was the FFA Chapter President for four years, State President in 1946. Donald eceived the American Farmers Degree in 1947 and went into partnership with his father and brother, purchasing the farm in 1956. It was a run down farm when his father bought it in 1921. He brought it into good production with cow and chicken manure. It was Organic then, but not recognized as such. In 1950 Donald did all the farm work and his partners ran the saw mill, using Organics and Chemicals together for three years. In 1953 he went totally Organic after doing two simple experiments. His dairy herd responded to the Organic roughage. In 1958 Donald won the New England in Winter Green Pastures Contest over several hundred chemical farmers, because of the best roughage and the healthiest dairy herd they saw on their 2000 mile trip through New England. Donald also won many hay awards at the Vermont farm show, receiving 99.7 and 99.5 points out of 100 for three years. The hay was not Judged the fourth year as he was accused of cheating -sure did he was Organic. Not one Farmer nor agriculture adviser came to the farm to see how he did it without chemicals. He left the Farm in 1963 because of uncontrollable circumstances and worked on a Florida farm in 1963 to 1966. Donald went to Computer night school starting in 1964 and finished in 1966, working as a computer operator in computer technology and retired in 1993. He now has a four acre organic farm and gardens in Goode, Virginia and out-grows all chemical gardeners. Soil test are proof you don’t need anything but organic matter.


Donald Lewis is author of the Book, Learned by the Fencepost, Lessons in Organic Farming & Gardening. He started dairy Farming in Vermont after graduating from High School in 1946 and was the FFA Chapter President for four years, State President in 1946. Donald eceived the American Farmers Degree in 1947 and went into partnership with his father and brother, purchasing the farm in 1956. It was a run down farm when his father bought it in 1921. He brought it into good production with cow and chicken manure. It was Organic then, but not recognized as such. In 1950 Donald did all the farm work and his partners ran the saw mill, using Organics and Chemicals together for three years. In 1953 he went totally Organic after doing two simple experiments. His dairy herd responded to the Organic roughage. In 1958 Donald won the New England in Winter Green Pastures Contest over several hundred chemical farmers, because of the best roughage and the healthiest dairy herd they saw on their 2000 mile trip through New England. Donald also won many hay awards at the Vermont farm show, receiving 99.7 and 99.5 points out of 100 for three years. The hay was not Judged the fourth year as he was accused of cheating -sure did he was Organic. Not one Farmer nor agriculture adviser came to the farm to see how he did it without chemicals. He left the Farm in 1963 because of uncontrollable circumstances and worked on a Florida farm in 1963 to 1966. Donald went to Computer night school starting in 1964 and finished in 1966, working as a computer operator in computer technology and retired in 1993. He now has a four acre organic farm and gardens in Goode, Virginia and out-grows all chemical gardeners. Soil test are proof you don’t need anything but organic matter.

The Bitter Truth About Splenda

Demand Outstrips Supply For Sugar Substitute Splenda

If you were told to ingest a biologically alien synthetic chemical whose presence on this planet did not predate 1976, and whose structure is only a few atoms away from the deadly pesticide DDT, and you knew that not only were there no long term human safety studies performed on it, but that it had been already proven in tests to have following adverse health effects [click hyperlinked text to read the study abstracts]:

· Shrunken thymus glands (up to 40% shrinkage) 

· Enlarged liver and kidneys.

· Abnormal histopathological changes in spleen and thymus

· Increased cecal weight 

· Reduced growth rate

· DNA Damage

· Adverse changes to gastrointestinal bacteria

· Abnormal Pelvic Mineralization

· Decreased red blood cell count 

· Hyperplasia of the pelvis

· Aborted pregnancy (Maternal & Fetal Toxicity)

· Decreased fetal body weights and placental weights 

· Bowel inflammation/Crohn’s Disease

· Triggering migraine

· Increase glycosylation of hemoglobin (HbA1c) for diabetics

…would you still consume it? Of course not! And yet, millions of Americans (including our precious children!) are doing exactly that by consuming Splenda. So, what is sucralose, chemically speaking?

Like “Splenda,” the term “sucralose” is a cute little marketing ploy. The true name of this ugly little chemical is actually too long for the human tongue to comfortably pronounce (which is usually an excellent indication that it is not safe to ingest!) Go ahead and see if you can wrap your vocal chords around this phonetic monstrosity:

1,6-dichloro-1,6-dideoxy-BETA-D-fructofuranosyl-4-chloro-4-deoxy-alpha-D-galactopyranoside

Despite the intended insinuation, sucralose is not a form of sucrose (cane sugar). Sucralose/Splenda is produced through artificially substituting three hydroxyl groups (hydrogen + oxygen) with three chlorine atoms in the sugar (sucrose) molecule. Natural sugar is a hydrocarbon built around 12 carbon atoms. When transformed into Splenda it becomes a chlorocarbon, in the same family as deadly pesticides like DDT, insecticides, biocides, disinfectants like Chlorox Bleach, and WWI poison gas like dichlorourea.

Recent research, in fact, shows that when heated — as in its advertised application as an ideal sugar alternative for baking — it releases highly toxic dioxin. Considering this fact, can this really be considered a food or should it be treated as a dangerous chemical?

The makers of sucralose/Splenda argue that this “remarkably stable” chemical passes unchanged into the urine and feces, when in fact, up to 11% to 27% is absorbed into the body (FDA, 1999). In fact, the varying degrees to which sucralose is absorbed is used as a marker for gut and intestinal permeability to determine certain disease states. Once absorbed, some portion of this chlorocarbon accumulates in the body (between 1.6% to 12.2%). What effects will these accumulated chemicals have? According to James Bowen, M.D:

“Any chlorocarbons not directly excreted from the body intact can cause immense damage to the processes of human metabolism and, eventually, our internal organs. The liver is a detoxification organ which deals with ingested poisons. Chlorocarbons damage the hepatocytes, the liver’s metabolic cells, and destroy them. In test animals Splenda produced swollen livers, as do all chlorocarbon poisons, and also calcified the kidneys of test animals in toxicity studies.”

How can this be true for an FDA approved sweetener?

FDA approval does not in any way guarantee safety… sadly enough, in many cases, it guarantees the exact opposite. Take aspartame for instance. Aspartame (Equal/NutraSweet) contains 10% methanol, which is broken down in our body into two extremely toxic substances: formaldehyde and formic acid. There are over 30 known adverse health effects associated with its consumption! This sweetener gained FDA approval in 1981, despite appalling evidence linking it to cancer, particularly, brain cancer.

So, if Splenda is not a viable alternative to sugar, what can we use instead?

When one uncouples the experience of “sweetness” from caloric content, the body becomes confused because it does not receive nourishment and therefore will not attain satiety – this, in turn, leads to overindulgence. Indeed, new studies have shown exactly this: those who consume synthetic sweeteners are more prone to obesity. What this means is that when we ingest something sweet, it should also have caloric and nutritional content. Anything less than this equation is a recipe for failure and ill health.

Thankfully Nature provides us with a veritable cornucopia of healthy sweeteners: honey, stevia, xylitol, erythritol, and dehydrated organic cane juice, all of which are available at your local health food store. Next time that sweet tooth calls, remember not to succumb to advertising hype which would convert poisonous chemicals into “magical” no-calorie sweeteners. Use both common sense and a sense of moderation, and your body will thank you.


Article Contributed by Sayer Ji, Founder of GreenMedInfo.com.

Sayer Ji is an author, researcher, lecturer, and advisory board member of the National Health Federation. He founded Greenmedinfo.com in 2008 in order to provide the world an open access, evidence-based resource supporting natural and integrative modalities. It is internationally recognized as the largest and most widely referenced health resource of its kind.

 

Too Much Of A Sweet Thing? Time For A Sugar Detox

sugar detox

I have a love-hate relationship with sugar. I love the taste, but hate what it does to me. Holidays bring that love-hate relationship in full force. As much as I tried to limit myself on the Christmas cookies this year, I partook in other high sugar delectables. The proceeding day, I am met with, what I call, the sugar hangover. I had no energy, had a headache and weird mood swings.  To combat this, I consumed high amounts of coffee for needed energy. Folks, this is the wrong way to go about this. If you are also feeling this way, then sugar could be wreaking havoc on your body and a detox may be the best approach.

Not Such a Sweet Thing

Sugar isn’t as sweet as it lets on to be. Sure it adds flavor, but it can also cause hormonal changes and mood swings. New studies show that excess sugar causes ageing of the skin. Scientists have even found sugar to have addictive qualities to it and are getting to the heart of this matter.

In a recent study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition suggests that, in fact, higher sugar, higher glycemic foods can be addictive. Scientists have found that the nucleus accumbens, the pleasure center of the brain, is also responsible for our addictions including drug abuse and even sugar addition.

Studies are showing how this region of brain lights up in response to images or eating sugary, processed or junk food. The study emphatically proved that foods that spike blood sugar are biologically addictive. Source

So, how can we get back into control of our brain’s pleasure center? We must become more conscious of our daily sugar intake. The American Heart Association recommends no more than 6 teaspoons of sugar for women and no more 9 teaspoons a day for men. Get this – on a daily basis, Americans eat about 20 teaspoons of sugar a day according to a report from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.

Getting in Synch With Your Body

Detoxing after the holidays is a great way to get back in synch with your body. That said, eliminating sugar from the body can have its physical withdrawal effects. This is a natural response and you must make every effort to resist giving into the cravings. When you feel a sugar craving coming on, walk for 15 minutes. Researchers found a 15-minute walk can curb cravings for a sugary treat by 12 percent!

Utilize these tips in your diet for three days and you will feel the effects.

1. Cut your sugar consumption. Your goal is to cut as much simple sugars as possible. In another study, sugary sweet foods are not the only culprits in raising your blood sugar level. White flour, white potatoes and refined starch have what is called a high glycemic index that triggers that pesky nucleus accumbens. That means that during the duration of your sugar detox, you should also consider reducing your consumption of starchy foods and white flour based foods.

2. Consider using natural sweeteners. Not all sugars are created equal. Natural sweeteners such as honey is considered a complex food. In fact, one teaspoon contains 25 other compounds including proteins, amino acids and trace minerals. Another example of a natural sweetener is the herb stevia. Stevia is 200 times sweeter than table sugar, so a little goes a long way.

3. Enhance your diet. Eat foods like you would have eaten one hundred years ago: fresh vegetables, clean proteins, nuts, seeds, good fats, and the occasional fruit. Simple sugars should not be a part of our detox diet. It is so important to look at your food’s ingredient labels. Food companies use artificial sweeteners in many of their products. These artificial sweeteners may alter your metabolism and cause weight gain, as well as a host of other health issues, including cancer.

Look for these hidden sugars in your foods:

  • Sucralose (includes Splenda brand)
  • Aspartame (includes Equal, Nutrasweet brands)
  • Saccharin (includes Sweet’N Low brand)
  • Fructose
  • Maltose
  • Sorbitol
  • Evaporated cane juice
  • Syrups
  • Xylotol

4. Flush your system. Drink lots and lots of water. During your detox, drink 3 liters spread out throughout a three day period. This is such a easy and natural way to flush the toxins from exorbitant sugar intake out of your body. Adding small bits of fresh ginger and lemon can also help detox your body.

Juicing is also a great way to flush toxins out of your body and replace simple sugars with naturally occurring ones. Go for the organic fruits and vegetables when juicing as it helps your body detoxify more efficiently. As well, this is a great juice to help detox from the holidays or from heavy metals and environment pollutants, and also gives you an added energy boost thanks to the ginger

Further, a diet high in sugar is believed to exacerbate fatty liver disease. Too much sugar spikes insulin and drives fat into the liver cells, which causes inflammation and scarring, eventually causing the liver to become cirrhotic. Give your liver a detox too by drinking lots of herbal teas that stimulate the liver to detox. The Yogi tea brand has a great detoxing tea that also has a pleasant taste. Turmeric is also a good tea to naturally detox the liver.

5. Take care of yourself. Boost your metabolism with 30 minutes of exercise per day. Get 10 to 15 minutes of sun twice a week for vitamin D (your body makes it from sunshine), and 250 mg of vitamin C daily for the antioxidants. As mentioned, if you begin to feel the sugar cravings, go for a quick 15 minute walk to curb the craving.

6. Find healthy alternatives. If your sugar cravings are getting the best of you, find healthy sugar alternatives. Fresh fruit is a great choice for getting natural sugars. As well, opt for a bit of organic dark chocolate with at least 70 percent cacao and it helps to lower blood pressure.

We have a choice in how healthy we want to be. You can always take steps to reverse the effects of bad health. These six tips will help your sugar detoxing go more smoothly and help your body remove toxic build up from sugar.


Tess Pennington is the editor for ReadyNutrition.com. After joining the Dallas chapter of the American Red Cross in 1999, Tess worked as an Armed Forces Emergency Services Center specialist and is well versed in emergency and disaster management and response. Tess is the author of The Prepper’s Cookbook: 300 Recipes to Turn Your Emergency Food into Nutritious, Delicious, Life-Saving Meals. When a catastrophic collapse cripples society, grocery store shelves will empty within days. But by following Tess’s tips for stocking, organizing, and maintaining a proper emergency food supply, your family will have plenty to eat for weeks, months, or even years.

 

12 Reasons To Avoid All Soy

soy

By: Natasha Longo | Prevent Disease –

Soy has become a major source of toxicity for human beings, especially in the last three decades. Not only is more than 99% of soy genetically modified, but sources labeled organic or non-GMO are often exposed to the same problems as conventional soy. If you consume processed foods, soy is almost impossible to avoid. With the exception of wheat, there are few foods that are causing as many health problems as soy in the food supply. Here are 12 reasons to avoid any kind of soy.

1. Soy Reduces Assimilation of Minerals

Phytic acid is present in the bran or hulls of all seeds and when we compare the phytate of soy to many other types of beans and nuts, the percent mass is not that far off, but that’s not the problem. The problem is how much we are consuming. Most people stuck on the soy bandwagon are consuming far more phytate by the sheer volume through mass consumption of things like soy milk, tofu, cereals, and processed foods. It doesn’t even compare to the amount they would consume through seeds and nuts. The effect of phytic acid on iron absorption has been thoroughly studied. As evident in a study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, as phytic acid increases, it has a diminishing impact on iron while inhibiting its absorption. This applies to almost every major mineral including zinc–one of the most important minerals for the human body. Two billion people may now have zinc deficiency. Phytates bind to zinc and thereby decrease its bioavailability. Phytic acid levels in soy reduce assimilation of calcium, magnesium, copper, iron and zinc.

2. Soy Causes Growth Problems and Even Cancer In Children

The phytic acid in soy is not neutralized by ordinary preparation methods such as soaking, sprouting and long, slow cooking. Consequently these high phytate diets have caused growth problems in children. Combined with the presence of both phytoestrogens and arsenic, soy-based formulas are a disease promoting ticking time bomb for infants. A study published in the peer-reviewed journal The Prostate, revealed that humans exposed to a combination of both toxicants were almost twice as likely to develop cancerous cells in their prostate. While it is established that both arsenic and estrogen can cause cancer, the research raises concerns about the dangers of chemicals in combination, and the efficacy of regulations that are established by testing one chemical at a time. True cancer of the prostate, carcinoma, is seldom seen in infants and children, but other forms of malignant tumors may develop and more cases are appearing in developed nations where the link appears to center around soy infant formula. While many claims have been made about the health benefits of these estrogen-like compounds, animal studies indicate that soy (both conventional and organic) contain powerful endocrine disruptors that alter growth patterns and cause sterility. Soy formula is also laden with toxic chemicals such as aluminum and manganese, which can cause both physical and mental health problems, learning disabilities, brain damage, and behavioral problems. A study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found that the highly concentrated phytoestrogens in soy formula weaken the immune systems of babies. Toxicologists estimate that an infant exclusively fed soy formula receives the estrogenic equivalent of at least five birth control pills per day.

3. Soy Linked To Cancer

The Chinese did not eat unfermented soybeans as they did other legumes such as lentils because the soybean contains large quantities of natural toxins or “anti-nutrients”. First among them are potent enzyme inhibitors that block the action of trypsin and other enzymes needed for protein digestion. These inhibitors are large, tightly folded proteins that are not completely deactivated during ordinary cooking. They can produce serious gastric distress, reduced protein digestion and chronic deficiencies in amino acid uptake. In test animals, diets high in trypsin inhibitors cause enlargement and pathological conditions of the pancreas, including cancer. What about the Japanese? The Japanese, and Asians in general, have much higher rates of other types of cancer, particularly cancer of the esophagus, stomach, pancreas and liver. Asians throughout the world also have high rates of thyroid cancer. The logic that links low rates of reproductive cancers to soy consumption requires attribution of high rates of thyroid and digestive cancers to the same foods, particularly as soy causes these types of cancers in laboratory rats. Just how much soy do Asians eat? A 1998 survey found that the average daily amount of soy protein consumed in Japan was about eight grams for men and seven for women – less than two teaspoons. Americans are consuming amounts far exceeding this quantity. Thousands of women are now consuming soy in the belief that it protects them against breast cancer. Yet, in 1996, researchers found that women consuming soy protein isolate had an increased incidence of epithelial hyperplasia, a condition that presages malignancies. A year later, dietary genistein was found to stimulate breast cells to enter the cell cycle – a discovery that led the study authors to conclude that women should not consume soy products to prevent breast cancer.

4. Soy Promotes Infertility

Soy beans contain genistein, a natural compound that has estrogenic effects because it binds the estrogen receptor with relatively high affinity. A study in the Journal Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology showed that dietary genistein exhibits a strongly increased estrogenic effect and cautionary attitude towards the consumption of large amounts of soy or soy supplements is warranted to prevent infertility. Another study in the journal Obstetrics and Gynecology International found that soy ingestion increases amniotic fluid phytoestrogen concentrations in female and male fetuses. Phytoestrogens daidzein and genistein may, alone or in combination with other chemicals, function as endocrine disruptors, with potentially adverse effects on male reproductive function.

5. D-Glutamic Acid

Natural glutamate in plants and animals is known as L-glutamic acid. Our normal digestive process slowly breaks down this natural or “bound” glutamic acid and it is then delivered to glutamate receptors in our body and brain. Broken down this way, it is harmless. However, factory, artificially bound D-glutamic acid in soy is broken down or made “free” by various processes (hydrolyzed, autolyzed, modified or fermented with strong chemicals, bacteria, or enzymes) is toxic to the human body. Since free glutamate can be a component part of certain food additives, such as hydrolyzed soy protein and cheap soy sauce, it is essentially unregulated when it comes to labeling standards. Many people who are very sensitive to D-glutamic acid experience respiratory, neurological, muscular, skin, urological and even cardiac symptoms.

6. High Levels of Aluminum

Soy has to go through a process to become soy protein isolate. Acid washing in aluminum tanks, which is designed to remove some of the anti-nutrients (but the results often vary widely), leeches aluminum into the final product. Aluminum can have adverse effects on brain development and cause symptoms such as antisocial behavior, learning disabilities. Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Harsh alkaline soaking solutions are used mainly in the production of modern soy foods such as soy protein concentrates, soy supplements, soy protein shakes, textured soy protein (TSP), etc. Much of the trypsin inhibitor content can be removed through high-temperature processing, but not all. Trypsin inhibitor content of soy protein isolate can vary as much as fivefold.

7. Blocks Production of Thyroid Hormone

In 1991, Japanese researchers reported that consumption of as little as 30 grams or two tablespoons of soybeans per day for only one month resulted in a significant increase in thyroid-stimulating hormone. Soy foods have a high concentration of goitrogens which block production of thyroid hormones. Scientists have known for years that soy-based formula can cause thyroid problems in babies. Scientists Daniel Sheehan and Daniel Doerge, from the National Center for Toxicological Research presented findings from rat feeding studies, indicating that genistein in soy foods causes irreversible damage to enzymes that synthesize thyroid hormones. Soy consumption is associated with thyroid disorders such as hypothyroidism, goiter, and autoimmune thyroid disease (ATD) as well as increased iodine requirement in certain cases.

8. Causes Allergic Reactions

Soy is one of the top allergens–substances that cause allergic reactions. Today, soy is widely accepted as one of the “big eight” that cause immediate hypersensitivity reactions. Some 28 different proteins present in soy have been found to bind to IgE antibodies. It’s also worth noting that the more soy protein you eat, the more likely you are to develop allergies to it — and the more severe those allergies are likely to become. Delayed allergic responses to soy are less dramatic than the top allergens like peanuts or shellfish, but are even more common. These are caused by antibodies known as immunoglobulins A, G or M (IgA, IgG or IgM) and occur anywhere from two hours to days after the food is eaten. These have been linked to sleep disturbances, bed-wetting, sinus and ear infections, crankiness, joint pain, chronic fatigue, gastrointestinal woes and other mysterious symptoms. Food “intolerances”, “sensitivities” and “idiosyncrasies” to soy are commonly called “food allergies”, but differ from true allergies in that they are not caused by immune system reactions but by little-understood or unknown metabolic mechanisms. Strictly speaking, gas and bloating–common reactions to soy and other beans–are not true allergic responses. However, they may serve as warnings of the possibility of a larger clinical picture involving allergen-related gastrointestinal damage. The soybean industry knows that some people experience severe allergic reactions to its products. In a recent petition to the FDA, Protein Technologies International (PTI) identified “allergenicity” as one of the “most likely potential adverse effects associated with ingestion of large amounts of soy products”.

9. Genetically Modified

Any ingredient listed as soybean or soy on any product ingredient list has a 93% chance of being GMO if it is not listed as organic. But even organic soy cannot be trusted. Soy is very problematic crop. Non-organic sources of soy in many agricultural practices are being passed off as organic. In 2011, the USDA uncovered a plot to import fraudulent organic certificates produced by an uncertified supplier in China. The Chinese firm used the counterfeit certificate to represent non-organic crops, including soybeans, millet and buckwheat, as certified organic. These types of things are happening every year and only a fraction are being discovered. Even domestically sourced organic soybean crops are now being investigated for having GMO origins. Organic soy also does not change the toxicity of unfermented sources so abundant in the food supply.

10. Most Soy is Unfermented

Phytates in unfermented soy products actually obstruct absorption of protein and four key minerals: calcium, magnesium, iron, and zinc better than fermented sources. In their natural form, soybeans contain phytochemicals with toxic effects on the human body. The three major anti-nutrients are phytates, enzyme inhibitors and goitrogens. These anti-nutrients are the way nature protects the soybean plant so that it can live long enough to effectively reproduce. They function as the immune system of the plant, offering protection from the radiation of the sun, and from invasion by bacteria, viruses, or fungi. They make the soybean plant unappetizing to foraging animals. All plants have some anti-nutrient properties, but the soybean plant is especially rich in these chemicals. If they are not removed by extensive preparation such as fermentation or soaking, soybeans are one of the worst foods a person can eat. The net protein utilization of unfermented soy is 61 which quite low. The most common soy (99%) sold at major grocery retailers in soy milks and processed foods is unfermented soy. It is deadly. Unfermented soy has been linked to digestive distress, immune system breakdown, PMS, endometriosis, reproductive problems for men and women, allergies, ADD and ADHD, higher risk of heart disease and cancer, malnutrition, and loss of libido. Fermented sources of soy such as natto, miso, tempeh and some fermented tofu are likely the only types of soy that should be consumed by humans and that’s only if you can get around the crap shoot that they’re non-GMO and organic (which there is no guarantee despite labeling).

11. Enzyme Inhibitors

When food is eaten, digestive enzymes such as amylase lipase and protease are secreted into the digestive tract to help break it down and free nutrients for assimilation into the body. The high content of enzyme inhibitors such as trypsin in unfermented soybeans interferes with this process and makes carbohydrates and proteins from soybeans impossible to completely digest. When foods are not completely digested because of enzyme inhibitors, bacteria in the large intestine try to do the job, and this can cause discomfort, bloating, and embarrassment. Anyone with naturally low levels of digestive enzymes such as elderly people would suffer the most from the enzyme inhibiting action of soy. In precipitated products, enzyme inhibitors concentrate in the soaking liquid rather than in the curd. Thus, in tofu and bean curd, growth depressants are reduced in quantity but not completely eliminated.

12. Immunotoxic

The prevalence of autoimmune diseases has significantly increased over the recent years. It has been proposed that this epidemiological evidence could be in part attributable to environmental estrogens, compounds that display estrogen-like activity. Environmental estrogens can be found in phytoestrogens which occur in soy. There is a considerable burden of evidence both in vitro and in animal models that these compounds exert immunotoxic effects. Phytoestrogens drastically reduce not only the size of the thymus, but also the bone marrow cavity as well, the sites where most deletion of autoreactive cells occur. Isoflavones, which are phytoestrogens present in large quantities in soy and soy-derived products, inhibit protein tyrosine kinase, and exert other effects in the body such as exacerbating the clinical course of this autoimmune disease.

Sources:
westonaprice.org
medscape.com
wholesoystory.com
mercola.com


Natasha Longo has a master’s degree in nutrition and is a certified fitness and nutritional counselor. She has consulted on public health policy and procurement in Canada, Australia, Spain, Ireland, England and Germany.

This article first appeared at Prevent Disease