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Study Found Toxin from GM Crops is Showing up in Human Blood

Genetically Modified CropsA new study is causing fresh doubts about the safety of genetically modified crops. The research found Bt toxin, which is present in many GM crops, in human blood.

Bt toxin makes crops toxic to pests, but it has been claimed that the toxin poses no danger to the environment and human health; the argument was that the protein breaks down in the human gut. But the presence of the toxin in human blood shows that this does not happen.

India Today reports:

“Scientists … have detected the insecticidal protein …  circulating in the blood of pregnant as well as non-pregnant women. They have also detected the toxin in fetal blood, implying it could pass on to the next generation.”


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/05/31/study-found-toxin-from-gm-crops-is-showing-up-in-human-blood.aspx

40% of IVF Treatments Are Unnecessary

Your entire body takes direction from your hormones. Hormones are secreted by your endocrine system and are responsible for telling your organs what to do and when to do it.1 They are essentially chemical messengers that travel throughout your bloodstream, working slowly over time to affect processes like growth and development, metabolism and reproduction.

Sometimes, these chemical messengers may get out of balance, and this leads to chronic disorders such as Type 2 diabetes, weak bones and infertility.2Hormones may be secreted by your adrenal glands, endocrine-related organs, hypothalamus, sex glands and other organs.3

Progesterone is important to fertility and supporting a pregnancy. It’s a steroid hormone secreted by the corpus luteum and then by the placenta if you become pregnant.4 In some cases, when couples suffer from infertility, they choose in vitro fertilization (IVF).

This is a complex series of procedures in which eggs are retrieved from the ovaries, fertilized by sperm in a lab and then transferred into the uterus.5 One full cycle can take up to three weeks6 and cost $12,000.7 In response to her struggles with infertility, Amy Galliher-Beckley, Ph.D.,8 co-founded MFB Fertility and the progesterone test Proov.9

The Estrogen and Progesterone Relationship

Each of your bodily systems maintains a balance to help you maintain optimal health. Your reproductive system is no different. For a woman, there are several hormones affecting a complex system to mature an egg follicle and release an egg where it travels to the uterus. If fertilized, the egg must implant into the uterus, called the endometrium, where it begins to develop into a baby.

These events are controlled by hormones secreted from several sources in the body. The ovaries produce the eggs and are the main source of estrogen. The adrenal glands sit on top of each kidney and also make a small amount. Estrogen plays a role in physical changes during puberty; it also controls the menstrual cycle, protects bone health and affects your mood.10

The second hormone essential to fertility is progesterone, a steroid hormone that is first secreted by the corpus luteum. After the egg is released, the corpus luteum is left attached to the ovary, which functions as a temporary gland.11These two hormones are controlled by the release of other hormones.

During the menstrual cycle gonadotropin-releasing hormone is secreted from the hypothalamus, triggering the secretion of follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) from the pituitary gland.12 This begins follicle development and triggers a rise in estrogen.

Luteinizing hormone (LH), also secreted by the pituitary gland, supports the maturation of the follicle and a trigger to cause the egg to be released. When estrogen levels get sufficiently high it signals a sudden release of LH, around mid-cycle, which triggers a set of events that ultimately release the mature egg from the follicle.13

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Once released, the empty follicle becomes the corpus luteum, which produces progesterone. The release of progesterone triggers the uterus to develop a highly vascularized bed suitable for implantation of a fertilized egg.

Without fertilization, the corpus luteum begins to degenerate, the secretion of progesterone drops off and menstruation occurs. If pregnancy occurs then the corpus luteum produces progesterone for the first 10 weeks until production is taken over by the placenta.14,15

Not About Getting Pregnant, but Staying Pregnant

As Beckley explains in her interview with Forbes magazine,16 her test is not about getting pregnant, but rather staying pregnant. Progesterone not only prepares the uterus for the egg to implant; it also protects the endometrium from degeneration and menstruation. While the body is producing high levels of progesterone during a pregnancy, a second egg will not mature.17

In order to maintain a pregnancy, the corpus luteum must continue to secrete progesterone. This maintains the blood vessels in the endometrium to feed the growing baby. It is in these early weeks that women with low levels of progesterone may have difficulty, both conceiving and developing the right environment for a fertilized egg to grow.

Some women who do get pregnant are at a high risk for miscarriage.18 The test Beckley developed comes with sticks used in much the same way ovulation and pregnancy tests are used. These sticks measure the amount of progesterone metabolites excreted in the urine. To date, this is the first at-home, over-the-counter test used to evaluate a woman’s ability to produce progesterone.19Beckley explains:20

“Low progesterone is the number one cause of unexplained infertility. Women who go through IVF protocols all are offered progesterone. If you are not going through IVF, most doctors don’t talk about progesterone, they don’t offer progesterone, they don’t test for progesterone. When your progesterone crashes too quickly, it is called a luteal phase defect.”

Luteal Phase Defect Increases Chances of Miscarriage

The luteal phase in a woman’s cycle begins after ovulation and represents the second half of the menstrual cycle. The luteal phase is named after the corpus luteum. Luteal Phase Defect (LPD) results in an abnormal endometrial growth that may not support a pregnancy.21,22

While researchers struggle to identify the underlying dysfunction and efficacy of LPD in supporting fertility, experts report women undergoing IVF always have LPD present.23 LPD is marked with a luteal phase less than 11 days. However, not all physicians believe the condition exists; reliable tests are lacking.24

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Beckley developed the Proov urine test to help women identify a reduction in progesterone during their cycle. According to Beckley,25 her test gives women more knowledge about how their body works and provides a foundation for asking their infertility doctors better questions.

The test measures the presence of metabolites in the urine that should increase and remain elevated after ovulation. It may be used to confirm ovulation and confirm levels of progesterone afterward. A single negative test before ovulation followed by a single positive test will confirm ovulation for women trying to get pregnant.26

For women trying to conceive, the test is recommended four days after peak fertility and then for continued testing 10 days past ovulation.27 When questions arise about levels of progesterone to maintain a pregnancy, they recommend testing six days after peak fertility and as needed during the pregnancy since the test should remain positive.

Other Functions of Progesterone

Although LPD has a significant impact on a woman’s ability to carry a pregnancy, it is the subject of debate.28 In some cases, the ovaries release enough progesterone but the uterine lining does not respond.29 LPD has been linked to other health conditions, including:30

Anorexia Endometriosis
High levels of exercise Obesity
Thyroid disorders Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)
High levels of prolactinemia (the hormone responsible for breast milk)

In some circumstances, when these conditions are treated, the LPD resolves.31Later in life, if levels of progesterone decline, a woman’s period may become irregular, heavier and longer,32 increasing her chance of experiencing anemia, depending on the amount and length of her period.33

Variations in hormone levels after menopause may also influence cognition and mood.34 In a study of 643 healthy postmenopausal women, researchers found that while estrogen had little effect on tests of executive function or global cognition, progesterone concentrations were associated with verbal memory. The researchers suggest this positive association merits additional study.

Bioidentical progesterone, also known as micronized progesterone in the oral form, has been successful in helping relieve hot flashes and night sweats during menopause. Dr. Jerilynn Prior from the University of British Columbia Vancouver presented her study at an endocrine society meeting during which she compared the use of progesterone to placebo.35

The study assigned 114 postmenopausal women into one of two groups, a placebo group and another who took 300 mg of micronized oral progesterone daily. To be eligible for the study, the women had to be off hormone therapy for at least six months.36

At the end of the 12-week study, researchers found that the group taking micronized progesterone demonstrated a 56% decrease in a score reflecting the number and intensity of symptoms, while the women taking the placebo reported a 28% decrease.37

Age Does Affect Hormone Balance

As is borne out by the number of women struggling with hormonal imbalances as they age and those requiring fertility assistance to become pregnant after 40,38 Beckley is vocal about the difficulty women may have supporting a pregnancy after she turns 40.39

Beckley says,40 “The closer a woman gets to menopause, the least likely her body is going to be able to support a pregnancy.” Much of this is related to the imbalance of hormones required to successfully support a pregnancy that occurs as women age.

Her research in designing the progesterone urine test led Beckley to believe 30% to 40% of women who undergo IVF treatment to become pregnant ultimately do not need IVF.41 Instead, they may require progesterone to develop a healthy endometrial lining and support early pregnancy.

Overall Fertility Is on the Decline

Couples experience infertility for a number of reasons. In a study42 released in 2017, researchers evaluated 38 years of information and found sperm counts declined significantly between 1973 and 2011. The sperm counts declined 52% to 59% in men located in North America, Europe and Australia.

The Australian Department of Health reports 1 in every 6 Australian couples suffers from fertility problems, which they attribute to the decision to have children later in life as well as declining sperm count. Quality and lifestyle factors such as smoking, not eating healthfully, consuming excessive amounts of alcohol and not having a healthy BMI also affect fertility.43

In May 2019, the Pew Research Center reported that for the fourth year in a row, key fertility indicators for U.S. couples declined, reaching a record low.44Two of the three indicators used to determine fertility reflected a decline in numbers.

The total fertility rate, or the estimation of the number of children a woman would have in her lifetime, was 1.73 children in 2018. This was lower than the estimate of 1.74 from the mid-1970s.45

Research suggests men’s fertility is affected by environmental toxins and chemicals you may find in your own home, which I discuss in a past article, “50 Percent Fertility Reduction Because of These Household Chemicals.”

Additionally, as described in the past article, “Birth Rate Reaches Record Low as Premature Deliveries Rise,” statistics from the CDC show the number of new births was down 2% in 2018 as compared to 2017, but the number of premature births was rising. Infertility and pregnancy are complex conditions that likely need a comprehensive approach to experience a successful outcome.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2019/09/18/ivf-treatment.aspx

Introduction to Dysphagia: A Throat and Esophageal Disorder With Many Underlying Causes

Swallowing is a complex biological action that comprises more than 31 muscles and five cranial nerves1 all working together to facilitate nutrition. Its two main goals are to push food from the mouth into the stomach and to protect airways from foreign objects.2

The Process Model of Feeding was created to help people understand how swallowing works whenever solid foods and liquids are consumed:3

  1. Stage 1 (Transport) — Once food enters the mouth, the tongue carries it to the post-canine region to the back of the mouth to begin chewing.
  2. Food processing — In this stage, the food is softened by saliva for chewing until it reaches an optimal state for swallowing. When drinking liquids, the posterior oral cavity is sealed by the tongue-palate contact to prevent leaking.
  3. Stage 2 (Transport) — Once food is ready to be swallowed, it is placed in the back of the tongue to be propelled into the esophagus.
  4. Pharyngeal stage — This process occurs within a second upon swallowing. The soft palate elevates and contacts the lateral and posterior walls of the pharynx to help prevent food from going into the respiratory pathways.
  5. Esophageal stage — Once past the throat, the chewed food (bolus) travels down into the esophagus and into the stomach for digestion.

When Your Swallowing Muscles Experience Problems, Dysphagia Occurs

Your throat and esophagus are prone to many diseases and when either of them is affected, you may experience dysphagia, a condition marked by difficulty swallowing.4 It can be caused by a multitude of factors and disorders, and may lead to complications such as dehydration, malnutrition, pneumonia or an airway obstruction.5 Aside being unable to swallow, other prominent symptoms of dysphagia include:6,7

  • Gagging, choking or coughing while swallowing food
  • Drooling or having difficulty controlling saliva in the mouth
  • Unexpectedly losing weight
  • Frequent heartburn
  • The feeling that something is stuck in your throat or chest
  • Regurgitation of food
  • Hoarse voice

Risk Factors Associated With Dysphagia

Aging is the one of the top risk factors connected to dysphagia.8 As people grow older, their ability to swallow becomes harder due to wear and tear on the throat and esophageal muscles. Elderly citizens also have a higher risk of developing diseases that can cause dysphagia, such as esophageal cancer, stroke, multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease.9,10

The onset of neurodegenerative diseases may also increase your risk of dysphagia.11 Stroke, for example, can cause paralysis that can affect any part of your body, including your throat, although it becomes minimal as time passes.12In addition, those who suffer from cervical spinal cord injury13 and Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD),14 a genetic disorder, may experience dysphagia as a side effect.15

Learn How to Manage and Avoid Dysphagia in This Guide

While the complications of dysphagia are very alarming, the disease is fortunately treatable via a variety of approaches. Consuming a healthy diet, getting regular exercise and avoiding unhealthy vices can all help mitigate the risk factors associated with the underlying causes of dysphagia. In the following pages, discover which methods work best and the best practices you can implement to safeguard your health.

MORE ABOUT DYSPHAGIA

Dysphagia: IntroductionWhat Is Dysphagia?Dysphagia SymptomsDysphagia CausesDysphagia TreatmentDysphagia PreventionDysphagia DietDysphagia FAQ

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Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2019/03/17/xdjm18-dysphagia.aspx

Thyroid Deficiency Linked to Iodine Deficiency and Fluoridated Water

More than 66 percent of the U.S. population drinks water with added fluoride,1despite the fact that studies continue to question its safety and usefulness for its stated purpose: preventing cavities. A number of countries — including Germany, Sweden, Japan, the Netherlands, Finland and Israel — have already stopped this hazardous practice, but many Americans are still at risk.

In Canada, nearly 39 percent of the population also receives fluoridated drinking water (compared with only about 3 percent of Europeans).2 It’s been known for years that fluoridated water consumption is linked to thyroid dysfunction and behavioral problems like attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and two new studies have added to the already apparent associations.

Exposure to Fluoridated Water May Disrupt Thyroid Functioning

Your thyroid gland, located in the front of your neck, influences almost every cell in your body. Thyroid hormones regulate your metabolism and are required for growth and development in children and nearly every physiological process in your body.

When your thyroid levels are unbalanced, it can lead to a cascade of problems throughout your body. In hypothyroidism, the most common thyroid disorder, your thyroid gland activity is suppressed.

Also known as underactive thyroid, many with this condition are unaware they have it, and another 4 to 10 percent of the U.S. population may suffer from subclinical hypothyroidism that is missed by testing yet associated with miscarriage, preterm birth and altered growth and neurodevelopment in babies.

Even moderately imbalanced thyroid levels may be associated with increased risk of metabolic syndrome, researchers noted in the journal Environment International, which is why “studying factors that contribute to low thyroid function, even at the subclinical level, is of high public health importance.”3

Notably, subclinical hypothyroidism is diagnosed by high serum thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) concentrations, and “fluoride in drinking water, even at levels as low as 0.3–0.5 mg/L, have predicted elevated TSH concentrations,” the researchers added. “Higher water fluoride concentrations have also predicted an increased likelihood of a hypothyroidism diagnosis among adults.”4

The latest study, which involved data from nearly 7 million Canadian adults not taking any thyroid-related medication, found that higher fluoride levels were not associated with higher TSH levels in the general population; however, when iodine status was accounted for, the results shifted.

Iodine Deficiency May Heighten the Risks of Fluoridated Water

Your body uses iodine across several organ systems, but it is most commonly known to synthesize thyroid hormones. Clinically low levels of iodine are associated with visible symptoms, such as a goiter (swelling of the thyroid gland), hypothyroidism or pregnancy-related problems. However, subclinical iodine deficiency can also interfere with your thyroid function.

Meanwhile, the Canadian study revealed that adults in Canada who have moderate-to-severe iodine deficiencies and higher fluoride levels tend to have higher TSH levels, which indicates they may be at an increased risk for underactive thyroid gland activity.5

It’s a startling finding, considering nearly 2 billion people worldwide don’t get enough iodine in their diet.6 As the researchers of the featured study noted, this means that those with iodine deficiency may be at an even greater increased risk from drinking fluoridated water:7

“Iodine deficiency can contribute to decreased thyroid hormone production and exacerbate the thyroid-disrupting effects of certain chemicals, as well as fluoride …

Fluoride exposures of 0.05 to 0.13 mg/kg/day have been associated with adverse thyroid effects among iodine sufficient people, while lower fluoride exposures of 0.01 to 0.03 mg/kg/day have been associated with these effects among iodine deficient people.”

The effects were so worrying that lead study author Ashley Malin, a researcher at the department of environmental medicine and public health, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, told Environmental Health News:8

“I have grave concerns about the health effects of fluoride exposure … And not just from my study but the other studies that have come out in recent years … We’re talking about potentially [more than] a million people at risk of an underactive thyroid due to fluoride exposure.”

In 2015, for instance, British researchers warned that 15,000 people may be afflicted with hypothyroidism in the U.K. as a result of drinking fluoridated water.9 In areas where fluoride levels in the water registered above 0.3 mg/l, the risk of having a high rate of hypothyroidism was 37 percent greater compared to areas that do not fluoridate.

Pregnant Women Drinking Fluoridated Water Have Higher Fluoride Levels

Fluoride exposure can occur from multiple sources, ranging from tea and processed foods to dental products, pharmaceuticals and fluoride-containing pesticides. However, research continues to show that drinking water remains a primary route of exposure, including in pregnant women.

In a study of more than 1,500 pregnant women living in Canada, those living in communities with fluoridated drinking water have two times the amount of fluoride in their urine as women living in nonfluoridated communities.10

“Research is urgently needed to determine whether prenatal exposure to fluoride contributes to neurodevelopmental outcomes in the offspring of these women,” researchers explained.11 In fact, research has previously revealed that women with higher levels of fluoride in their urine during pregnancy were more likely to have children with lower intelligence.

Specifically, each 0.5 milligram per liter increase in pregnant women’s fluoride levels was associated with a reduction of 3.15 and 2.5 points on the children’s General Cognitive Index (GCI) of the McCarthy Scales of Children’s Abilities and Wechsler Abbreviated Scale of Intelligence (WASI) scores, respectively.

Lead researcher Dr. Howard Hu, of the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto in Canada, said in a news release:12

“Our study shows that the growing fetal nervous system may be adversely affected by higher levels of fluoride exposure. It also suggests that the prenatal nervous system may be more sensitive to fluoride compared to that of school-aged children.”

The findings were groundbreaking, as the study, which spanned 12 years and received funding from the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH), was one of the first and largest studies looking into this topic.

Prenatal Fluoride Exposure Is Linked to ADHD

The Canadian study on pregnant women living in fluoridated communities revealed levels of fluoride similar to those found in a study of pregnant women living in Mexico City, where the chemical is added to table salt. The same Mexican sample population has now been featured in another study, linking fluoride exposure to ADHD.13

The study, which involved more than 200 mother-children pairs, found that higher levels of fluoride exposure during pregnancy were associated with higher measures of ADHD, including more symptoms of inattention, in the children at ages 6 to 12 years. “[The f]indings are consistent with the growing body of evidence suggesting neurotoxicity of early-life exposure to fluoride,” researchers explained.14

It’s also possible that fluoride may contribute to or exacerbate behavioral problems such as ADHD by way of pineal gland calcification. Despite its diminutive size, your pineal gland tends to accumulate significant amounts of fluoride, which eventually causes it to calcify.

Besides ADHD-like symptoms, pineal calcification may also play a role in Alzheimer’s and bipolar disease. According to Frank Granett, director of clinical pharmacy operations at Behavioral Center of Michigan Psychiatric Hospital:15

“Located deep within the brain below the corpus callosum, which is the circuit connector for the right and left brain hemispheres, the pineal gland is responsible for the secretion of melatonin, the human body’s biological time-clock hormone regulating normal sleep patterns.

More importantly, the pineal gland plays a critical role in the enzyme pathway for the production of brain neurotransmitters including serotonin and norepinephrine. Additionally, the body’s antioxidant defense system is optimized by healthy pineal tissue, which helps eliminate free-radical toxin accumulation in the body.”

A review in Lancet Neurology also classified fluoride as one of only 11 chemicals “known to cause developmental neurotoxicity in human beings,”16 alongside other known neurotoxins such as lead, methylmercury, arsenic and toluene. Among the proposed mechanisms of harm, studies have shown fluoride can:17

Interfere with basic functions of nerve cells in the brain Reduce nicotinic acetylcholine receptors
Reduce lipid content in the brain Damage the pineal gland through fluoride accumulation
Impair antioxidant defense systems Damage the hippocampus
Damage Purkinje cells Increase uptake of aluminum, which has neurotoxic effects
Encourage formation of beta-amyloid plaques (the classic brain abnormality in Alzheimer’s disease) Exacerbate lesions induced by iodine deficiency
Increase manganese absorption, which has also been linked lower IQ in children Impair thyroid function, which can also affect brain development

Can Fluoride Be Removed From Drinking Water?

Effective 2015, the level of fluoride in U.S. drinking water was reduced to 0.7 mg/L from a previously recommended range of between 0.7 and 1.2 mg/L. If you live in the U.S. and want to know fluoride levels in your water, the Environmental Working Group’s (EWG) Tap Water Database can help.18 This is important for everyone, but pregnant women and households mixing formula for babies should take extra care to consume fluoride-free water. EWG notes:

“Even fluoride levels of 0.7 ppm, the amount of fluoride in drinking water recommended by the U.S. Public Health Service, can result in too much fluoride for bottle-fed babies.

EWG recommends that caregivers mix baby formula with fluoride-free water. The National Toxicology Program is investigating the potential for low doses of fluoride to alter thyroid function and childhood brain development.”19

Unfortunately, fluoride is a very small molecule, making it tremendously difficult to filter out once added to your water supply. Any simple countertop carbon filter, like Brita, will not remove it.

If you have a house water carbon filtration system that has a large volume of carbon, then it may reduce the fluoride as fluoride removal is in direct proportion to the amount of fluoride and the time it’s in contact with the media. It’s just not going to get it all. Among the more effective filtering systems for fluoride removal are:

  • Reverse osmosis (RO). The drawback is that it will remove many valuable minerals and trace elements as well. RO systems also need frequent cleaning to avoid bacterial growth. So, use a tankless RO system with a compressor
  • Water distillation, which, like RO, gets everything out, including beneficial minerals. You then need to restructure the water
  • Bone char filters and biochar with activated charcoal

The simplest, most effective, most cost-effective strategy is to not put fluoride in the water to begin with.

Help End the Practice of Fluoridation

There’s no doubt about it: Fluoride should not be ingested. Even scientists from the EPA’s National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory have classified fluoride as a “chemical having substantial evidence of developmental neurotoxicity.”

Furthermore, according to the CDC, 41 percent of American adolescents now have dental fluorosis — unattractive discoloration and mottling of the teeth that indicate overexposure to fluoride. Clearly, children are being overexposed, and their health and development put in jeopardy. Why? The only real solution is to stop the archaic practice of water fluoridation in the first place.

Fortunately, the Fluoride Action Network has a game plan to END water fluoridation worldwide. Clean pure water is a prerequisite to optimal health. Industrial chemicals, drugs, and other toxic additives really have no place in our water supplies. So, please, protect your drinking water and support the fluoride-free movement by making a tax-deductible donation to the Fluoride Action Network today.

Internet Resources Where You Can Learn More

I encourage you to visit the website of the Fluoride Action Network (FAN) and visit the links below:

Together, Let’s Help FAN Get the Funding They Deserve

In my opinion, there are very few NGOs that are as effective and efficient as FAN. Its small team has led the charge to end fluoridation and will continue to do so with our help! Please make a donation today to help FAN end the absurdity of fluoridation.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2018/10/23/thyroid-deficiency-linked-to-iodine-deficiency-fluoridated-water.aspx

This Thyroid Condition Is a Top Public Health Issue

By Dr. Mercola

Iodine deficiency and the thyroid conditions related to it are a serious public health concern. Several studies published earlier this year suggest iodine deficiency is re-emerging. While about 40 percent of the world’s population is thought to be at risk of iodine deficiency,1 residents of developed countries are increasingly found to be lacking this essential nutrient.

Your body cannot produce iodine so you must get if from your diet. Iodine is necessary to make thyroid hormones, which control your metabolism and other vital functions. Because your thyroid hormones also support proper bone and brain development in utero and during infancy, the proper intake of iodine is critically important for pregnant women, nursing mothers and their babies.

What Is Iodine and Why Is It Important?

As mentioned, iodine is an essential element needed for the production of thyroid hormone. Because your body does not make iodine, you need to be intentional to ensure you obtain sufficient amounts of this nutrient on a daily basis. Although iodine can be sourced from the foods you eat or through a supplement, many people eating a standard American diet generally get enough iodine simply by using table salt. I’ll say more about salt later in the article.

When your body lacks sufficient iodine, it cannot make enough thyroid hormone. If your deficiency is severe, your thyroid may become enlarged, a condition also known as a goiter. Iodine deficiency can also cause hypothyroidism (low thyroid function). In some cases, lack of sufficient iodine can trigger intellectual disabilities and developmental problems in infants and children whose mothers were iodine deficient during pregnancy.2

According to the American Thyroid Association, iodine deficiency has also been linked to “increased difficulty with information processing, diminished fine motor skills, extreme fatigue, depression, weight gain and low basal body temperatures, among other things.”3

Studies Highlight Iodine Deficiency as an Emerging Problem in Developed Nations

A 2018 study published in the journal Nutrients4 involving 1,007 mothers who gave birth to 1,017 children (including 10 twin pairs; multiple births other than twins were excluded), suggests iodine deficiency is a significant public health issue in Norway. After collecting data multiple times during pregnancy, at birth and during four follow-up points until the babies reached age 18 months, the researchers concluded:

“[T]his study adds to the increasing evidence that pregnant women in Norway are iodine deficient and that the diet of pregnant women does not secure a sufficient iodine intake. There is an urgent need for public health strategies to secure adequate iodine nutrition among pregnant women in Norway.”

Another body of 2018 research, published in JAMA,5 implicated iodine deficiency as a factor associated with impaired fertility. The study included 467 American women who were trying to become pregnant during a four-year span. The researchers, who were associated with the National Institutes of Health, found:6

  • Slightly more than 44 percent of the women had urinary iodine to creatinine ratios (UI/Cr) of less than 50 micrograms (mcg)/gram (g)
  • Women with UI/Cr ratios lower than 50 mcg/g had a 46 percent lower chance of becoming pregnant in any menstrual cycle compared to women with normal iodine levels or those suffering from a mild deficiency
  • Those experiencing milder iodine deficiencies — between 50 and 99 mcg/g — also took longer to conceive than women with healthy iodine levels, although the difference wasn’t statistically significant

An earlier study published in 20137 found children of women with a UI/Cr ratio of less than 150 mcg/g during pregnancy were more likely to have lower scores on verbal IQ, reading accuracy and reading comprehension at age 8.

Iodine Is an Essential Nutrient During the First 1,000 Days of Life

In a March 2018 study published in Nutrients,8 researchers from the U.K.’s University of Surrey and Spain’s Hospital Riotinto observed the effects of a mother’s iodine deficiency related to various stages of child development — during pregnancy, breastfeeding and the first two years of life. About the outcomes, Health.News noted:9

“[The researchers] observed iodine deficiency could lead to cognitive consequences such as impaired speech development, learning and reading skills. The negative cognitive outcomes caused by iodine deficiency also led to an increase in behavioral disorders. This was associated with abnormal serum thyroid concentrations during the early stages of pregnancy.”

“Iodine is most critical in the early stages of development, as the fetal brain is extremely dependent on iodine supply and it cannot be replaced by any other nutrient,” suggests study coauthor Dr. Ines Velasco from the pediatrics, obstetrics and gynecology unit of Hospital Riotinto. “[A]n adequate iodine intake in pregnancy is needed to achieve optimal fetal neurodevelopment.”

Iodine Deficiency: Its History and Causes

You may associate iodine with salt. There’s a long-standing connection between the two mainly because beginning in the U.S. in 1924, iodine (in the form of potassium iodide) was added to table salt to address the skyrocketing rates of deficiency.10 Many residents of the Appalachian, Great Lakes and Pacific Northwest regions were plagued by goiters.

Due to the lack of iodine in the soil and the alarming rates of thyroid dysfunction found in local populations, these areas became referred to as the “goiter belt.” At the time, the addition of iodine to table salt, which was an idea borrowed from the Swiss who were adding it for the same reasons, had a noticeably positive effect, reducing the prevalence of deficiency.11

Now, decades later, iodine deficiency is once again showing itself to be a problem. About the issue, Dr. Jacob Teitelbaum, author and nationally recognized expert on chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, pain and sleep, asserts:12

“In the last 30 years, the intake of iodine in America has dropped by around 50 percent. Iodine’s main role is to help manufacture thyroid hormones. That’s why a subclinical iodine deficiency — enough to prevent a goiter, but not enough for optimal health — can cause hypothyroidism, an under-recognized condition that is epidemic in America.”

Chemicals in Your Environment Can Block Iodine Absorption

While women have a greater incidence of iodine deficiency related to their hormone production, the bodies of both men and women are subject to the poor absorption of iodine and suboptimal use due to environmental contamination. Common contaminants that compete with iodine include:

  • Bromide: Bromides are known endocrine disruptors found in baked goods, pesticides and plastics, among other sources. Because bromide is a halide, it competes for the same receptors used in your thyroid gland and other body areas to capture iodine, thereby inhibiting thyroid hormone production and resulting in a deficiency.
  • Fluoride: Fluoride has long been known to displace iodine and studies involving both animals and humans have proven such. As cited by the Fluoride Action Network, Chinese researchers “have repeatedly found that an iodine deficiency coupled with fluoride exposure produces a significantly more damaging effect on neurological development than iodine deficiency alone.”13
  • Mercury: Iodine may help detoxify your body of mercury, which is found in dental amalgam fillings and fish like tuna, as well as in consumer products such as antiques, batteries, electronics, light bulbs and pharmaceutical products.
  • Nitrates: While there are healthy nitrates, such as from vegetables, including beets, the nitrites found in processed meats such as bacon, hot dogs, lunch meat and sausage may interfere with your uptake of iodine, so be sure to avoid them. Nitrates from agricultural fertilizer, present in contaminated drinking water, have also been implicated as a potential cause of thyroid cancer.14
  • Perchlorate: A contaminant found in groundwater across the U.S. and in measurable amounts in milk, fruit and vegetables. In high doses, perchlorate may inhibit the function of your thyroid gland. Even in low doses, it inhibits the uptake of iodine by your thyroid gland, leading to hypothyroidism.15,16

How Much Iodine Do You Need and How Can You Get It?

According to the National Institutes of Health, the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for iodine is:17

Age RDA for Iodine
Birth to 6 months 110 mcg
7 to 12 months 130 mcg
1 to 8 years 90 mcg
9 to 13 years 120 mcg
14 years and older 150 mcg
Pregnant women 220 mcg
Breastfeeding women 290 mcg

I always recommend you get as many nutrients as possible from the food you eat and your intake of iodine is no exception. Always choose fresh, organic fruits and vegetables and raw, organic, grass fed dairy. Below are some of the foods known to be rich in iodine:18,19

Cheese

If you are able to tolerate dairy, you’ll be pleased to know raw, organic, grass fed cheese is high in iodine. For example, a 1-ounce serving of raw cheddar cheese contains about 10 to 15 mcg.

Cranberries and cranberry juice

Although about 4 ounces of cranberries contain 400 mcg of iodine, as with any fruit, I suggest you consume fresh, organic cranberries or cranberry juice in moderation due to their fructose content. To avoid added sugar, you may want to make your own cranberry juice or buy a brand containing 100 percent juice and no added sugar. (Avoid cranberries if you have urinary tract stones or take a blood-thinning medication like warfarin.)

Eggs

One large organic, pastured egg contains about 24 mcg of iodine.

Lima beans and navy beans

One cup of cooked lima beans contains about 16 mcg of iodine; one-half cup serving of navy beans contains 32 mcg. While beans are also a great source of fiber, be advised they contain health-damaging lectins. To reduce the lectin content, always soak beans overnight and change the soaking water a few times. Using a pressure cooker can help reduce lectins. Eat beans only occasionally.

Potatoes

A medium-sized baked potato contains about 60 mcg of iodine, making potatoes one of the richest sources of iodine among vegetables. Because potatoes are heavily sprayed with pesticides, be sure to purchase organic potatoes. Due to their high starch content, I recommend you eat potatoes in moderation.

Sea vegetables

Sea vegetables such as arame, dulse, hiziki, kelp, kombu and wakame are excellent sources of iodine. Kelp, which boasts 2,000 mcg per a 1-tablespoon serving, is the best source of iodine on the planet. At the low end of this group, wakame contains about 80 mcg per tablespoon, a level that outpaces many other sources of iodine.

You can read more about the restorative benefits of kelp in my previous article, “Kelp or Kale: Is Seaweed a Superfood?

Strawberries

One cup of strawberries contains about 13 mcg of iodine. As with cranberries, be mindful that strawberries contain fructose. Because strawberries are sprayed with pesticides, always buy organic.

Yogurt

As a superb source of natural probiotics, a 1-cup serving of yogurt provides approximately 90 mcg of iodine. Choose yogurt made from raw, organic, grass fed milk and keep in mind that store bought varieties typically contain added sugar, artificial colors and flavors and other unhealthy ingredients. For the best yogurt, you may want to make your own. Check out my recipe “How to Make Fresh Homemade Yogurt.”

Health Effects Associated With Iodine Deficiency

Even though the inclusion of iodine in table salt was an effective strategy used to increase iodine levels for decades, it is no longer having effects for a growing portion of the U.S. population. The main reason is that table salt has endured a major loss of popularity and many are choosing to forego this once ubiquitous staple, particularly in developed countries in which other salts have increased in popularity.

In recent years, unprocessed salts, such as sea salt and mineral salts like Himalayan pink salt, which is a personal favorite, have become more popular. While mineral salts are wonderful sources of trace minerals such as calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and vanadium, they may leave you short on iodine since it is not added.

In years past, iodine was also added to flour, but has since been replaced with bromide and chlorine, which only exacerbates the problem. As noted by Teitelbaum, chlorine further depletes your body of iodine.20 The most common symptoms/outcomes of iodine deficiency include:21

  • Cancer: Your iodine intake is directly tied to your breast health because this mineral provides a host of antioxidant benefits. Iodine deficiencies are linked to both breast cancer and thyroid cancer. The good news is iodine is involved in apoptosis — programmed cell death that is necessary for the development of new cells and the elimination of diseased cells.
  • Fatigue and weakness: Because iodine is important for your body’s energy production, a lack of it can cause you to feel fatigued and sleepy. Its absence may also cause you to feel cranky and moody.
  • Goiter: Simply stated, a goiter is abnormal swelling of your thyroid gland due to insufficient iodine. Not only will a goiter cause a noticeable protrusion at the base of your neck, but more serious types may result in a cough and may even make it difficult for you to breathe and swallow.
  • Infertility: Given its importance for regulating your thyroid function and hormones, iodine also plays a role in infertility.
  • Other concerns: Because iodine is crucial for proper thyroid function, a lack of it can trigger hypothyroidism. An underactive thyroid gland can cause constipation, dry skin, fatigue, hair loss and unexpected weight gain, among other symptoms.

Given the increasing rates of thyroid deficiencies worldwide, especially in developed countries, you’d be wise to ensure you are getting sufficient daily amounts of iodine. While I do not recommend table salt because it has been stripped of many of its nutrients, there are plenty of healthy sources for iodine. If for any reason you are not able to consume any of those foods, talk to your doctor about taking a high-quality iodine supplement.

This vital mineral is much too important to ignore. If you have any symptoms of iodine deficiency, you can take one or both of the following actions to determine your iodine status:

  • As explained in the video above, conduct a simple skin test at home using an orange-colored iodine tincture
  • Ask your health practitioner to check your iodine level using an iodine-loading test or through bloodwork


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2018/07/23/iodine-deficiency-top-public-health-issue.aspx

Why Screening and Commonly Prescribed Thyroid Drugs Often Fail to Relieve Symptoms

By Dr. Mercola

Your thyroid gland, located in the front of your neck, influences almost every cell in your body. Thyroid hormones regulate your metabolism, and are required for growth and development in children and nearly every physiological process in your body.

When your thyroid levels are unbalanced, it can spell trouble for your overall health and wellness. Evidence suggests nearly 60 percent of people with suboptimal thyroid function are unaware of their condition.1 While prevalent, it is often easily treatable and may reverse symptoms of other health conditions.

Poor thyroid function is linked to health conditions such as fibromyalgia, irritable bowel syndrome, eczema, gum disease and autoimmune disorders. Symptoms of low function and the health conditions affected by low levels are varied, as the hormone is used throughout your body.

Women are five to eight times more likely than men to have low thyroid function and 1 in 8 women will develop a thyroid disorder in her lifetime.2 Understanding the basics of how your thyroid functions and what may cause a dysfunction is important to your overall health.

Thyroid Function

Your thyroid gland is shaped like a butterfly on your neck just under your voice box and secretes four hormones: T1, T2, T3 and T4. The number indicates the number of molecules of iodide attached to the hormone. These hormones interact with other hormones, such as insulin, cortisol and sex hormones.

Your hypothalamus secretes thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH) that triggers the pituitary gland to release thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) that then causes your thyroid to release T4. Almost 90 percent of your thyroid hormone is released in an inactive form of T4. Your liver then converts T4 to T3 with the help of an enzyme. T2 is currently the least understood form of thyroid hormone and is the subject of a number of ongoing studies.

When everything is working properly, your body makes enough T4 that is converted to T3 to control the metabolism of every cell in your body. T3 is critical in the communication of messages to your DNA to increase your metabolism by burning fat. In this way, it helps keep you lean. Nutritional imbalances, toxic exposures, allergens, infections and stress can disrupt this hormonal balance, leading to a series of health complications including hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism and thyroid cancer.

Thyroid Cancer Acts Differently Than Other Cancers

You may have been swayed by advertisements from an industry-funded foundation3 to be screened for thyroid cancer, but the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force has added this screening process to their “don’t-do-it category” in recommendations published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.4

The task force believes the consequences of thyroid cancer screening far outweigh the benefits. Although most cancer screenings help detect early disease and increase the potential for successful treatment, in this case early screening may actually backfire.

In many cases thyroid cancer screening will yield a false positive result, finding cancers that would never grow into life-threatening tumors.5 However, once discovered, most physicians feel obligated to recommend treatment, which often includes removal of the thyroid gland, and which may have significant side effects.

Surgeons may accidently sever nerves that control speech and swallowing, or remove the parathyroid gland that regulates calcium levels in your body. In an accompanying editorial, Dr. H. Gilbert Welch, of Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice, discussed problems with overdiagnosis of thyroid cancer.

Data from the SEER program demonstrated the incidence of thyroid cancer had remained relatively stable until 1990, after which it tripled.6 However, more interesting is that despite this rapid increase, mortality from thyroid cancer has remained stable, an indication cancers are identified and treated that don’t require treatment. Welch said:7

“Patients with newly diagnosed thyroid cancer typically have been treated aggressively. As of 2013 in the United States, over 80 percent underwent total thyroidectomy and subsequently required lifelong thyroid replacement therapy.”

Do You Have Underactive Thyroid Function?

In this informative video, Dr. Jonathan Wright discusses the measurement of thyroid function and how it should be compared against symptoms you may be experiencing. This was demonstrated in a recent European study in which researchers compared results of treatment against lab testing and symptoms.8

The authors were interested in the clinical effectiveness of treatment with the drug levothyroxine (Synthroid) after patients were diagnosed with low thyroid function. The number of people diagnosed in the U.S. has risen to the point levothyroxine is the most prescribed medication, outdistancing statins in 2015.9

A study from Johns Hopkins found nearly 15 percent of all older Americans were taking levothyroxine.10 However, as popular as this medication appears to be, the European study found the drug had no significant effect on older Europeans with mild symptoms of hypothyroidism.11 Physicians often order a TSH test as part of a routine panel of blood tests, prescribing drugs when the numbers are slightly elevated, although the patient may not complain of significant symptoms.

The study participants had higher than normal TSH level at least twice and had complaints of being tired. The researchers assessed cognitive speed, hand strength, weight and blood pressure prior to splitting the group, giving half levothyroxine and half a placebo. After one year of intervention, the researchers found TSH levels returned to normal in the group taking the drugs, but the participants’ complaints did not improve over the year in either group.

Flame-Retardant Chemicals Affect Thyroid Function

The researchers attributed the changes in TSH levels to age in the population studied, as the average participant was 74 years. However, other research has demonstrated environmental toxins may be responsible for a change in your thyroid function, and even for an increasing number of papillary thyroid cancer.12

Lead researcher Dr. Julie Ann Sosa, professor of surgery and medicine at Duke University School of Medicine, said, “Recent studies suggest that environmental factors may, in part, be responsible for this increase.” The research focused on polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), a class of flame-retardant chemicals.

Previous animal studies had demonstrated a link between PBDEs and thyroid function, so Sosa and her colleagues collected dust samples from the homes of 140 participants already diagnosed with papillary thyroid cancer who had lived in their home an average of 10 years.

The researchers used blood samples to assess exposure to PBDEs and found those living in homes with high levels of BDE-209 were twice as likely to have thyroid cancer. Those with high levels of TCEP dust were four times more likely to have large aggressive tumors.

Water Contamination May Trigger Thyroid Disease

Nearly 100 percent of people living in the U.S. have perchlorate in their body, but according to scientists, Arizona is one of the six most perchlorate-polluted states.13 As perchlorate remains stable in water, it may easily invade drinking water supplies. The chemical is known to disrupt health by preventing iodide uptake at the thyroid gland. Your thyroid gland requires iodide in order to produce thyroid hormone.14 Thus if the perchlorate prevents iodide uptake, it reduces the amount of thyroid hormones in your body.

Perchlorate may also slow brain development in infants. C. Loren Buck, Ph.D., of Northern Arizona University,15 will lead a two-year study to evaluate the effects of the chemical on citizens in Yuma, Arizona. The process for the biomolecular substitution of perchlorate for iodide is called the Finkelstein Reaction.16 This reaction is not limited to perchlorate in the thyroid gland, but also occurs with other additives found in city water, namely fluoride.17,18

A British study found a strong correlation between areas where fluoride content was highest with higher risk of developing underactive thyroid function. In fact, in areas where the levels of fluoride exceeded 0.3 milligrams per liter (mg/L) the risk of low thyroid function rose by 30 percent.19

In the U.S., the minimum standards for drinking water fluoridation are set at 0.7 mg/L by the U.S. Health and Human Services.20 This means the risk of low thyroid function as a result of poor iodide uptake may be even higher in Americans than those found in the British study, based on higher levels of fluoridation.

Natural Strategies to Support Your Thyroid Function

A diagnosis of suboptimal thyroid function is best made with a combination of blood testing and screening for clinical symptoms. Symptoms of low thyroid function may include:

Unexplained fatigue Depression Dry skin
Anxiety Feeling cold Brain fog
Unexplained weight gain Low libido Hair loss

There are several natural strategies you may consider to help support your thyroid function and improve your health. These include:

Water filtration

As I discuss in a previous article, “Why Filtering Your Water is a Necessity,” fluoride is not the only chemical polluting your drinking water. While filtering the whole house is important to prevent chlorine from evaporating or aerosolizing into the air, fluoride removal is most important in your drinking water.

Unfortunately, most tap water contains a vast array of disinfection byproducts, chemicals, radiation, heavy metals and even pharmaceutical drugs. Fluoride, which is still being added to many municipal water supplies, is yet another factor that can make the water you drink each day more harmful than healing.

Ashwagandha

An herb native to Asia and India, it has been a powerful tool in Ayurvedic medicine for thousands of years. It functions as an adaptogen, meaning it helps your body adapt to challenges by balancing your immune system, metabolism and hormonal systems.21

The root contains the highest concentration of the active ingredients in the plant and helps modulate hormone balances, including your thyroid hormone. It has also demonstrated positive effects on estrogen and progesterone balance as women move toward menopause.

The root reduces cortisol levels, restores insulin sensitivity and helps to stabilize your mood, even if depression isn’t part of your thyroid condition.22Other research indicates it may protect your brain from oxidative stress and improve your energy level.23

Natural desiccated thyroid

Natural desiccated thyroid (NDT) is a prescription medication that may be referred to as natural thyroid, thyroid extract, or by the brand names Nature-Throid or Amour Thyroid.24 NDT contains T4, T3, calcium and other elements a natural thyroid gland would produce.

In a randomized, double-blind, crossover study, researchers compared NDT against levothyroxine in 70 patients, ages 18 to 65 years, who suffered from primary hypothyroidism.25 The patients took either medication for 16 weeks.

Afterward, patients were asked which they preferred and nearly 50 percent preferred the NDT versus 19 percent who preferred the levothyroxine. Those taking the NDT lost an average of 3 pounds while those taking the levothyroxine didn’t lose any weight.

Another study in the New England Journal of Medicine demonstrated a natural thyroid supplement was better at controlling mental functioning as it supplied both T3 and T4; T3 does 90 percent of the work of your thyroid hormones.26

If your doctor or endocrinologist will not consider switching you from levothyroxine to an NDT preparation, you may want to share this article and some of the available research with them, as a synthetic preparation is rarely the best choice to treat hypothyroidism.

Iodine

This is a requirement for normal thyroid hormone function. In this video Dr. Jorge Flechas discusses the rampant iodine deficiency that plagues industrialized nations and the doses that may be necessary to reverse this trend.

Avoid sources of bromine

Bromine appears to play a large role in the rising number of people suffering from iodine insufficiency. Bromines are found in pesticides, plastics, baked goods, soft drinks and fire retardants.

Vitamins and amino acids

Vitamins B1227 and A28 with amino acid tyrosine29 have demonstrated beneficial effects in people who suffer from suboptimal thyroid function.

Guggul

This is an extract of the sap from an Indian myrrh tree, which enhances the conversion of T4 to T3 in your body.30 Traditionally, the supplement was used to treat low metabolism, a symptom of suboptimal thyroid function. In an animal model, researchers found rats given guggul had increased uptake of iodine from their food and increased activity of thyroid enzymes with increased oxygen consumption.31

The supplement also demonstrated increased blood concentration of T3 hormone from T4 conversion,32 and increased the activity of the enzyme responsible for converting T4 to T3.33 It is likely unsafe during pregnancy and you should thoroughly evaluate the interactions with your physician before using it.34

Korean ginseng

This is an adaptogen like ashwagandha and contains properties that block production of excessive amounts of reverse T3 (rT3). Asian practitioners developed a fermented ginseng preparation that was absorbed better, faster and stayed in your body longer.35

A human study looked at the impact of this preparation on thyroid hormone levels and found that treatment by injection resulted in better clinical outcomes, healthy increase of T3 and T4 levels and a reduction in rT3.36


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2017/05/31/screening-thyroid-drugs-often-fail-to-relieve-symptoms.aspx

Effective Treatment Protocols for Hypothyroid and Hyperthyroid Disease

By Dr. Mercola

Thyroid disease is one of the most common health problems we face today. From a practical standpoint, there are many ways to approach this issue. In this interview, Dr. Jonathan Wright, a pioneer in natural medicine, shares his protocols for addressing thyroid dysfunction.

Hypothyroidism, or underactive thyroid, is a very common problem, and there are many reasons for this, including drinking chlorinated and fluoridated water, and eating brominated flour.

Chlorine, fluoride, and bromine are all in the same family as iodine, and can displace iodine in your thyroid gland.

Secondly, many people simply aren’t getting enough iodine in their diet to begin with. The amount you get from iodized salt is just barely enough to prevent you from getting a goiter.

A third principal cause of hypothyroidism is related to elevated reverse T3 levels. Interestingly, 95 percent of the time, those with elevated reverse T3 levels will see their levels revert back to normal after undergoing chelation with EDTA and DMPS, which draw out cadmium, lead, mercury, and other toxic metals. In essence, heavy metal toxicity can cause a functional form of hypothyroidism.

“It’s very well-known that lead and cadmium interfere with testosterone production,” Dr. Wright says. “What’s not so well-known is that reverse T3 is stimulated by toxic metals, so up it goes.

In effect, we can have levels that are so high, they way outnumber the regular T3. You’re functionally hypothyroid even if your TSHs and free T3s happen to be normal.”

How Much Iodine Do You Need for Thyroid Health?

In Japan, the daily dose of iodine obtained from the diet averages around 2,000 to 3,000 micrograms (mcg) or 2-3 milligrams (mg), and there’s reason to believe this may be a far more adequate amount than the US recommended daily allowance (RDA) of 150 mcg.

Some argue for even higher amounts than that, such as Dr. Brownstein, who recommends 12.5 milligrams (mg) on a regular basis. Another proponent of higher iodine amounts is Guy Abraham, an ob-gyn and endocrinologist at the University of Southern California.

“Oddly enough, he didn’t publicize [his publications] much until he retired from the University of Southern California. But after that, he came out with a wonderful website, optimox.com, where you can read a lot of stuff for free,” Dr. Wright says.

“There’s a fairly careful study showing that the thyroid gland does not start to downregulate until we get to 14 or 14.5 milligrams of total iodine and iodide. This is probably why Dr. Abraham first, and then others, have designed both liquids and tablets that come out with 12 or 12.5 mg.

Oddly enough, in 1829, Dr. Lugol put together a combination of iodine and iodide. Two drops of that stuff equals exactly to 12.5 milligrams. How did Dr. Lugol know? We don’t know. But it works so well for people ever since 1829 that it’s still available (with a prescription) as Lugol’s iodine…

Usually, in my practice, I’ll say, ‘One drop of Lugol’s, which is six milligrams; six and a quarter.’ Or for the guys, who don’t have as much massive breast tissue, let’s stay with three milligrams. [To] prevent cancer, I want more than three milligrams for the ladies.”

Iodine Helps Protect Breast Health Too…

From Dr. Wright’s experience, there are no adverse effects from taking upwards of 12.5 mg of iodine per day, and in some cases higher amounts may benefit more than your thyroid. There’s compelling research suggesting that iodine is equally important for breast health, and that iodine – not iodide – combines with a lipid to form molecules that actually kill breast cancer cells.

“Breasts are big sponges for iodine,” Dr. Wright notes. “Not iodide so much; that’s the thyroid gland. But if you have enough iodine, why, those molecules are just sitting there ready waiting to kill new breast cancer cells!”

According to Dr. Wright, iodine is also crucial for other breast-related problems, such as fibrocystic breast disease, for which iodine works nearly every time. Interestingly, for severe cases, it’s recommended to swab the entire cervix with iodine.

“For bad cases, you got to work with your doctor. Get the iodine swab done,” Dr. Wright says. “The worse the fibrocystic breast disease is, the more treatment it takes. But that one, I can almost give a money-back guarantee… because I never would have to give you your money back.”

That said, it would seem prudent for most to avoid taking such high doses unless they were using it therapeutically, for a short period of time. I personally feel that supplementation at a dose 10 times lower, or a few mg, might be best for most.

Good Sources of Iodine

Besides Lugol’s, seaweed or kelp is a great source of iodine. One that is oftentimes recommended by herbalists for thyroid health is a seaweed called bladderwrack (Latin name: Fucus vesiculosus). You can find it in either powdered form or in capsules. If you want, you can use it to spice up your meals, as it has a mild salty flavor. The downside is that to reach three milligram dose, you’ll need to take at least a couple of teaspoons per day.

Another concern is the potential radiation issue from the Fukushima reactor, which has contaminated much of the Japanese seaweed. So make sure you look at the source of your seaweed. Try to get it from the Norwegian Coast or as far away from Japan as you can get. While manufacturers have not started labeling their products as “radiation-free,” you could simply check the bottle with a Geiger counter before taking it.

Dr. Wright’s Thyroid Program

Dr. Wright always begins with a physical exam, where he looks for signs of thyroid dysfunction. This includes symptoms such as dry skin, thinning of the outer margins of your eyebrows, subtle accumulation of fluid in your ankles, constipation, lack of sweating, weight gain, and high cholesterol. An older yet helpful test is to take your temperature every morning and observing if your temperature registers close to 98.6.

This test stems from the work of Dr. Broda Barnes back in the ’30s and ’40s. Dr. Barnes found that if the temperature was low, it was a reliable indication of an underactive thyroid (hypothyroid). “These days, with all the other things going on, I find that sign useful in some people but not in others,” Dr. Wright says. “But I do want it for everybody.”

As for laboratory tests, the complete thyroid panel includes thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH), total T4, free T4, total T3, free T3, and the reverse T3. He cautions against trusting the TSH test as a primary diagnostic tool, despite that being the conventional norm. He bases his recommendation on research by Dr. St. John O’Reilly, an expert on thyroid health at the University of Scotland, who has shown that the TSH test virtually never correlates with the clinical condition of the patient.

According to Dr. Wright, the TSH level doesn’t really become a valuable indicator of hypothyroidism unless it’s high, say around 5 or 10. Thyroid therapy has been around since the 1890s, and until the TSH test became the norm, the average dose of thyroid given was almost exactly twice what the average dose became when everybody started paying attention to the lab test rather than the clinical signs. Dr. St. John O’Reilly recommends basing the diagnosis on the physical exam and the Free T3 level instead, which is the protocol Dr. Wright follows in his clinic.

“The Free T3 is, of course, the free hormone, not the one bound up on the thyroid globulin, where it’s temporarily inactive,” Dr. Wright explains. “The Free T3 is the one that helps us to burn energy; it’s the active hormone. The Free T4 is waiting to become active, but it’s not active yet. It signals back to the TSH. But the Free T3 doesn’t signal back to the TSH as much as the Free T4 does.”

Meanwhile, the T4 is the type of thyroid replacement that is typically and traditionally given by almost every conventional physician. In my experience, it’s one of the primary ways you can differentiate between a natural medicine physician and a traditional conventional physician: the type of thyroid replacement they prescribe.

Complicating Matters: Autoimmune Thyroid

Unfortunately, most people who end up on thyroid hormone replacement are placed on synthetic thyroid hormone, again, typically T4, commonly prescribed under the brand names Synthroid or Levothroid. Traditional doctors almost always prescribe this, and anyone who doesn’t prescribe it is oftentimes severely criticized, and may even be called before their state medical board.

That actually happened to me, and I wasn’t even prescribing it. I have stopped seeing patients, but have written about it in this newsletter. I was called before the medical board to defend my position on prescribing bioidentical whole thyroid hormone rather than Synthroid or Levothroid—even though my article was supported by a study reference from the New England Journal of Medicine, a very prestigious journal. Dr. Wright also prefers bioidentical thyroid replacement, and typically starts patients out on whole thyroid derived from animals (typically cow, sheep, or pig).

“In the whole thyroid are all the things that nature and creation put into whole thyroid. That’s what we should be using unless you happen to have an autoimmune problem. Many people with… Hashimoto’s disease… make antibodies to thyroid. If you’re making antibodies to thyroid, I’m not sure that we should be putting in whole thyroid right away… because there is a small chance – it’s not a large chance – that we’re going to stimulate more antibody formation,” he says.

In those with Hashimoto’s disease, where your body is making antibodies against your thyroid hormones, Dr. Wright will typically start you out on T4 and T3, which are only two of the 12 iodinated substances your thyroid gland makes, and which are all found in whole thyroid.

The Role of Heavy Metal Toxicity

As mentioned at the beginning, one of the principal causes of hypothyroidism is related to elevated reverse T3 levels, which can become elevated in response to heavy metal toxicity. In such cases, Dr. Wright recommends detoxifying before beginning thyroid treatment. The detoxification protocol will vary depending on your level of lead, cadmium, mercury, and other heavy metals.

“Some people get these efficiently out of their bodies within 10 to 15 chelation treatments. There are other people, particularly those who lived in major metropolitan areas all their lives, where it takes 30 or 40 chelation treatments to pull out all the toxic metals,” he notes. “When doing that, you have to make sure you’re seeing a doctor who follows the procedure put out by the American Board of Chelation Therapy (ABCT).

Chelation pulls out toxic minerals. But no one has yet discovered a chelation material that pulls out toxic metals without pulling out normal metals, too – calcium, magnesium, zinc, and copper, the whole works. The doctors doing the chelation must be reinfusing normal minerals periodically according to his or her reading of the initial chelation test. The initial chelation test on page one shows all the toxic metals that are or not coming out. Page two, which should never be omitted, should always be done. It shows the normal minerals.”

In the meantime, while you’re trying to clear these toxic metal stores to bring the reverse T3 down, opinions are mixed on whether you should be treated with thyroid medication or not. Some believe it’s beneficial to add in regular T3, but if the chelation rectifies your reverse T3 level, then by adding regular T3, you may simply end up with too much free T3. Others recommend waiting until the chelation is done to reevaluate, and if needed, put you on whole thyroid later on, provided you don’t have a family history of autoimmune disease or have Hashimoto’s.

“It simply takes the doctor’s judgment and skill in deciding which way to go,” Dr. Wright says.

Eliminating Heavy Metals Requires Special Care

Clearly, this is a process you’re not going to be able to do by yourself. You really need to have a health coach, a trusted and respected healthcare clinician, who has the capacity to perform these relevant tests and procedures, who can also prescribe the appropriate supplements and thyroid hormone replacement, which you cannot obtain over the counter.

Elimination of carbon-based toxins, such as herbicides and pesticides, can be promoted through sauna-induced sweating. The Hubbard Protocol takes it a step further, and involves the use of niacin, high-intensity exercises, and sauna on a regular basis to help mobilize and eliminate toxins. Unfortunately, sweating doesn’t readily eliminate toxic metals. For those, you need a more aggressive approach, such as chelation.

One option that can help minimize the loss of crucial microminerals is to use chelating suppositories. They will still pull out minerals from your system, but you don’t have to worry about it nullifying the nutritional value of the food you just ate, which is a concern anytime you take an oral chelating agent. One drawback is that it takes a bit longer. “I’ve seen some people who have to do rectal suppository stuff for a couple of years to get all their toxic metals out,” he says. “And yes, we check their normal minerals fairly routinely, every couple of months, just to make sure it’s not being overdone that way.”

Recommended Types of Thyroid Medications

Once your reverse T3 is normalized and any autoimmune issues have been addressed, Dr. Wright goes on to prescribe a thyroid hormone replacement, such as:

  • Armour thyroid
  • Nature-Throid
  • Westhroid

The Armour Thyroid has one disadvantage: despite it being practically a generic now, it costs twice as much as the other two. But unless cost is a major factor, there are several types of tests to check for compatibility, to determine which one is likely to work the best for you.

“We’ve all heard of muscle testing. We don’t have to employ that, but some doctors are very skilled at it,” Dr. Wright says. “We use other sorts of compatibility testing to check for energy flow in the acupuncture meridians and how it’s impaired or not impaired by certain types of thyroid. We’ll go with the one that’s compatible with that individual. But we do respect if people say, ‘Look, I’ve heard that Westhroid and Nature-Throid are half the price of Armour Thyroid. Let’s stick with those if we can.’ We do respect that.”

As for fine-tuning the dose, there are a wide variety of symptoms that can help you gauge whether you’re getting enough of a dose—or help you determine whether you might have a thyroid problem to begin with. To learn more, Dr. Wright suggests picking up Dr. David Brownstein’s book Overcoming Thyroid, Dr. Mark Starr’s book Hypothyroidism Type 2: The Epidemic, or Dr. Ridha Arem’s book The Thyroid Solution. All of these books contain checklists of symptoms to look out for.

If you’re on thyroid hormone replacement, two key signals that you’re taking too much are excessive sweating and rapid heartbeat or heart palpitations. If you get either of those symptoms, you’re getting too much thyroid, and you need to cut back on the dose.

It’s also worth noting that in some cases, if you’re borderline hypothyroid, you may only need an iodine supplement rather than a thyroid hormone replacement. “Some people ask that very question. They’re close enough to normal and they say, ‘I could feel a little better. My test could be a little better. But can I just try some iodine?’ They try and sometimes it succeeds. That’s another option. Sometimes you could normalize with nothing more.”

Treating Overactive Thyroid

 

At the other end of the spectrum of thyroid dysfunction, you have hyperthyroidism, where your thyroid is overactive. It’s far less common than hypothyroidism, but it’s no less of a problem when it happens. “It’s not common. No. But we should let everybody know that there is an effective treatment out there,” Dr. Wright saysThis is particularly important in light of the conventional treatment options, which are really poor. Typically, you’re looking at using radioactive iodine, which is a disaster, or surgery.

In the video clip above Dr Wright reviews the treatment that originated at Walter Reed Army Medical Center (WRAMC), at their department of thyroid. They had enough people with hyperthyroidism there that they were able to divide them into four treatment groups. One treatment group received lithium. A second group received Lugol’s iodine. Group three took lithium first and then, three or four days later, started iodine. Group four took Lugol’s iodine first, and then three or four days later started taking lithium.

When the statistical dust settled, what they found was that the group that started with Lugol’s iodine and finished with lithium did significantly better than all of the other groups in getting the hyperthyroidism under rapid control. More than two decades ago, The Mayo Clinic also published an article on the treatment of hyperthyroidism using lithium. Here, they used lithium alone, and were also able to bring abnormally high T3 and T4 numbers down to normal within a week to 10 days. It didn’t work on everybody though.

According to Dr. Wright, Walter Reed’s system is profoundly effective. Of all the people treated for hyperthyroidism in Dr. Wright’s clinic, amounting to about 40, there have only been two cases where the protocol failed. Normal levels can often be achieved in less than two weeks. In summary, the treatment is as follows:

  • Patient starts out on five drops of Lugol’s iodine, three times per day
  • After four or five days, patient starts receiving 300 mg of lithium carbonate, one to three times per day

Take Control of Your Thyroid Health

Hypothyroidism is far more prevalent than once thought. Some experts believe that anywhere between 10 and 40 percent of Americans have suboptimal thyroid function. Thyroid hormones are used by every cell of your body to regulate metabolism and body weight by controlling the burning of fat for energy and heat. They’re also required for optimal brain function and development in children. If you feel sluggish and tired, have difficulty losing weight, have dry skin, hair loss, constipation, cold sensitivity, and/or lack of sweating, these could be signs of hypothyroidism.

Iodine is the key to a healthy thyroid, and if you’re not getting enough from your diet (in the form of seafood), you’d be well advised to consider taking a supplement, ideally a high-quality seaweed supplement (be sure to check its source to avoid potential radioactive contamination), or other iodine-containing whole food supplement.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/06/15/hypothyroid-hyperthyroid-disease.aspx

The Simple Fibromyalgia Treatment that’s Nearly Always Overlooked…

Dr. John Lowe is a skilled clinician, recognized as one of the leading experts on treating thyroid disease with natural medicine. In this interview, he discusses hypothyroidism and the lesser known thyroid hormone resistance, and how thyroid disease is connected to fibromyalgia.
Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/02/26/dr-john-lowe-on-thyroid-disease-part-1.aspx

Cookware Chemical Linked to Thyroid Disease

nonstick pannonstick panA study links thyroid disease with human exposure to perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA). PFOA is a persistent organic chemical used in industrial and consumer goods including most nonstick cookware and stain- and water-resistant coatings for carpets and fabrics.

The study included nearly 4000 adults aged 20 and older whose blood serum was sampled between 1999 and 2006 for PFOA.

The researchers found that the individuals with the highest PFOA concentrations were more than twice as likely to report current thyroid disease.

Previous animal studies carried out by other scientists have shown that the compounds can affect the function of the mammalian thyroid hormone system. This system is essential for maintaining heart rate, regulating body temperature and supporting many other body functions, including metabolism, reproduction, digestion and mental health.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2010/02/13/cookware-chemical-linked-to-thyroid-disease.aspx

The Menopause Thyroid Solution

Mary Shomon, menopause, thyroidBy Dr. Mercola

Mary Shomon is one of the top leaders in the field of thyroid research. She is the extremely popular About.com thyroid guru, as well as my go-to person when I’m looking for thyroid-related information.

Already a New York Times bestselling author, Mary’s latest book, The Menopause Thyroid Solution: Overcome Menopause by Solving Your Hidden Thyroid Problems, deserves a place on every woman’s bookshelf. It’s a landmark study in the vital role your thyroid plays in helping you manage even your most difficult menopausal symptoms.

Are You Experiencing Menopause … or “Thyropause”?

If you’re a woman in your 40’s or 50’s and are feeling fatigued, depressed, and are gaining weight, you’re not alone. Forty million other women in the U.S. are suffering right along with you with what most assume are the symptoms of menopause.

But are your symptoms really menopause related?

Did you know the drop in reproductive hormones beginning at middle age (and sometimes much earlier) often triggers a reaction in your thyroid? Mary calls this thyroid slowdown “thyropause,” and as she explains in her new book, the changes in your thyroid may actually be the cause of your symptoms.

If you’re taking hormones for menopausal symptoms, natural or prescribed by a doctor, you may be taking unnecessary medication. What you may need to do instead is to investigate what’s going on with your thyroid.

In The Menopause Thyroid Solution, Mary shows you how to distinguish between thyroid and menopause symptoms. She also helps you with food choices, medication options, supplements, and lifestyle changes you can make to alleviate symptoms, improve your metabolism and increase your energy level.

Connecting the Dots

The conventional approach to medicine is to treat each of your symptoms as completely independent from the others. The fact is, symptoms do not occur in a vacuum, but most traditional practitioners are just not interested in hearing about anything other than your most bothersome complaint.

This is especially counterproductive when considering the cause of your menopausal-type symptoms.

Your hormones are part of a network, your endocrine system. Yet if your problems seem to be hormone-related, the majority of allopathic MDs will treat you very specifically for either menopause, or thyroid problems.

This tunnel vision approach is unlikely to work for long, if at all, since there’s a high probability your symptoms are both menopause and thyroid related.

What Mary does so beautifully in her new book is connect the dots for you, using a holistic approach that covers everything from determining the cause of your hormonal-based symptoms and understanding how they overlap, right through a wide range of steps you can take to heal yourself and dramatically improve the quality of your health and your life as you age.

Her book also explains the pros and cons of traditional, natural and bioidentical hormone treatments for estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, DHEA, pregnenolone, and cortisol imbalances. This information couldn’t be timelier given the latest serious threat to the production of natural hormonal remedies.

Mary Shomon’s latest effort is an empowering book which helps you take better care of your own health as you age, as well as arms you with the information you need to get the most out of visits to your doctor or other health care provider.

I highly recommend The Menopause Thyroid Solution to women of all ages, and especially those of you who are entering or are in perimenopause or menopause. To learn more about the book, visit menopausethyroid.com.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/12/15/the-menopause-thyroid-solution.aspx

Iodine Deficiency: Signs, Symptoms, and Solutions for Poor Thyroid Function

By Dr. Mercola

burned out, tired, fatigueHypothyroidism is far more prevalent than once thought. The latest estimates are that 20 million Americans have hypothyroidism, but the actual numbers are probably higher.

Some experts claim that 10 to 40 percent of Americans have suboptimal thyroid function.

Thyroid hormones are used by every cell of your body to regulate metabolism and body weight by controlling the burning of fat for energy and heat. Thyroid hormones are also required for growth and development in children.

Iodine is Key for Thyroid Health

Iodine is the key to a healthy thyroid and efficient metabolism, and even comprises a large part of the thyroid hormone molecule itself.

Even the names of the different forms of thyroid hormone reflect the number of iodine molecules attached — T4 has four attached iodine molecules, and T3 (the biologically active form of the hormone) has three — showing what an important part iodine plays in thyroid biochemistry.

Iodine deficiency is one of the three most common nutritional deficiencies, along with magnesium and vitamin D.

Since iodine is so important for thyroid function, wouldn’t you expect to see an increase in hypothyroidism with insufficient iodine levels?

Yes, and that is exactly what we have seen.

This means that your thyroid problem could actually be an iodine deficiency problem.

If you feel sluggish and tired, have difficulty losing weight, have dry skin, hair loss, constipation or cold sensitivity, it could all be related to hypothyroidism.

More than 100 years ago, iodine was shown to reverse and prevent goiter (swelling of your thyroid gland) and to correct hypothyroidism. But we now understand that iodine’s effects are much farther reaching.

Iodine has four important functions in your body:

  1. Stabilization of metabolism and body weight
  2. Brain development in children
  3. Fertility
  4. Optimization of your immune system (iodine is a potent anti-bacterial, anti-parasitic, anti-viral and anti- cancer agent)

While iodine levels have fallen, there have been simultaneous increases in rates of thyroid disease, breast cancer, fibrocystic breast disease, prostate cancer, and obesity in American adults, and an increase in mental retardation and developmental delays in American children.

Why are Iodine Levels Dropping?

Iodine deficiency is on the rise in the United States. Simple supplementation may not be the answer as the following issues also need to be addressed.

Recent national survey data suggest that just over 11 percent of the total U.S. population, and over 7 percent of pregnant women, and nearly 17 percent of all reproductive-aged women, are deficient in iodine.

The Total Diet Study, performed by the FDA, reported an iodine intake of 621 µg for 2 year-olds between 1974 and 1982, compared with 373 µg between 1982 and 1991. During this same time period, the baking industry replaced iodine-based anti-caking agents with bromine-based agents.

In addition to iodine’s disappearance from our food supply, exposure to toxic competing halogens (bromine, fluorine, chlorine and perchlorate) has dramatically increased.

You absorb these halogens through your food, water, medications and environment, and they selectively occupy your iodine receptors, further deepening your iodine deficit.

Fluoridation of water is a major contributor to iodine deficiency, besides being very damaging to your health in many other ways.

Additional factors contributing to falling iodine levels are:

  • Diets low in fish, shellfish and seaweed
  • Vegan and vegetarian diets
  • Decreased use of iodized salt
  • Less use of iodide in the food and agricultural industry
  • Use of radioactive iodine in many medical procedures, which competes with natural iodine

Crying Wolff

A huge reason why iodine fell out of favor is the “Wolff-Chaikoff Effect,” which has been a disaster for public health.

An experiment was done that resulted in a case of hypothyroidism, which researchers misinterpreted as being caused by excessive iodine intake. However, the individual was given intravenous radioactive iodine — which is toxic. It had nothing to do with food or supplement iodine intake, and the two are completely different.

Yet, tales of this experiment quickly spread, creating a fear of iodine that caused it to be removed from the American food supply for the last three decades.

Iodine deficiency is particularly profound in the Midwest and Great Lakes region of the United States because iodine is typically found only in soils close to the oceans, whereas soils of inland areas are iodine deficient. In fact, that region used to be called the “goiter belt” because of its extremely high incidence of people with goiters.

The Toxic Halides — Iodine’s Fiercest Competitors

Iodine is a member of a class of related elements called “halogens” that includes bromine, fluorine, and chlorine. When they are chemically reduced, they become “halides”: iodide, bromide, fluoride, and chloride. These are the forms you usually encounter in your foods, medications and environment.

Iodide and chloride are beneficial in small amounts, but bromide and fluoride are toxic. They grab onto your iodine receptors, blocking the action of iodide and thyroid hormones, resulting in, or at least contributing to many serious diseases.

One of the main problems is that the toxic halides become stuck in your body.

There is no known detoxification pathway for bromine and fluorine — your body simply cannot break them down. So, they build up in your tissues and wreak havoc on your health.

Bromides

Bromides are a menace to your endocrine system and are present all around you.

Despite a ban on the use of potassium bromate in flour by the World Health Organization, bromides can still be found in some over-the-counter medications, foods, and personal care products.

The use of potassium bromate as an additive to commercial breads and baked goods has been a huge contributor to bromide overload in Western cultures.

Sodium bromate can be found in products such as permanent waves, hair dyes, and textile dyes.

Benzylkonium is used as a preservative in some cosmetics. Even trace amounts of bromine can trigger severe acne in sensitive individuals. And who needs skin care products that cause acne?

Bromine is also found in fire retardants used in carpets, mattresses, upholstery, and furniture and some medical equipment.

Based on animal research, bromides have been linked to behavioral changes and neurodevelopmental disorders, including Attention Deficit Disorders, in children.

The United States is quite behind in putting an end to the egregious practice of allowing bromine chemicals in your foods and products whereas other nations have taken the bull by the horns:

  • In 1990, the United Kingdom banned bromate in bread
  • In 1994, Canada did the same
  • Brazil recently outlawed bromide in flour products
  • The European Union has banned some PBDE compounds (polybrominated diphenyl ethers)

What’s taking us so long?

Again, corporate profits trump health concerns when it comes to doing what is best for the public.

Great Resource for Learning More

Author and patient advocate Mary Shomon is one of the leading educators on thyroid health in the U.S. and has led the most popular consumer forum, the About.com thyroid guide. Mary cautions thyroid patients not to run out to the health food store and load up on iodine or iodine-rich supplements like kelp and bladderwrack.

According to Mary, in someone who is not iodine-deficient, excessive iodine supplementation can actually worsen a pre-existing thyroid condition, or trigger further thyroid dysfunction. The key is in getting the right amount of iodine — not too much, not too little.

The way to evaluate your iodine intake is a test that measures how much iodine you are excreting in your urine.

The general protocol requires you to take a dose of iodine, collect your urine for 24 hours, and then send the sample off to a lab where they calculate your iodine level based on how much iodine you are spilling into your urine. If you are interested in being tested for iodine deficiency, this urine iodine challenge test is the most accurate way to assess your iodine status.

Getting Your Iodine Levels Up

If you are iodine deficient, I recommend adding sea vegetables to your diet.

The best source of organically bound iodine that I know of is non-commercially harvested seaweeds. The dose is about 5 grams a day or about one ounce per week, so a pound would last about two months.

It is typically better to obtain a nutrient from a natural food whenever possible than from a supplement, so use supplements only as a last resort.

Some patients also report that they respond better to food-based forms of iodine — like seaweeds — than the supplement forms. However, if you are going to use a supplement I would strongly advise using supersaturated iodine (SSKI) which is available as an inexpensive prescription. Typically 1-3 drops a day are all that are required.

Please avoid using Lugol’s solution or iodine, as that can actually worsen your thyroid condition.

The fact that your thyroid only transports iodine in its ionized form (i.e. iodide) is straight out of the textbooks.  Your thyroid reduces iodide (I-) into iodine (I2) for use in formation of thyroglobulin.  Your body doesn’t utilize iodine directly. It has to split the I2 into two I- ions, which is an oxidative reaction that causes oxidative stress.

Iodide transporters are located in other areas of your body besides the thyroid gland, including your breasts and colon. One family of iodide transporters is called the sodium-iodide symporter, and the other is called pendren.  Dr. David Brownstein (see below) discusses the sodium-iodide symporter but doesn’t mention pendren.  However like all ion transporters they too require a charge in order to move a molecule across the membrane, which means iodine must be in its ionized form.

It’s possible that some may see good results using Lugol’s for some afflictions, but according to autism expert Catherine Tamara,  in her experience it is very clear that children with autism, and their mothers, do fine with iodide, but not necessarily with iodine.

For more information about the research that makes me question the recommendation for iodine and Lugol’s solution, please see these studies:

 

 

Keeping your iodine levels optimal is particularly important if you are a women that is contemplating pregnancy, or are already pregnant Make sure you are taking seaweed or a prenatal vitamin with the right amount and form of iodide, not iodine, to help protect your baby.

Tips for Optimizing Thyroid Function

David Brownstein, M.D., has written several books on thyroid and iodine, which are a valuable resource for those of you who want more information.

Also, Dr. Hyman has made some good recommendations if you have a sluggish thyroid:

  • Identify and treat underlying causes (e.g., iodine deficiency, hormone imbalance, environmental toxicity, inflammation)
  • Adjust your diet and understand the role of nutrition (iodine, as well as tyrosine, selenium, vitamins A and D, zinc, B vitamins, and omega-3 fats), food allergies, gluten intolerance, and foods that contain goitrogens, such as soy, which interfere with the utilization of iodine
  • Get plenty of exercise
  • Reduce your stress
  • Enjoy saunas and hot soaks for detoxification,
  • Use supplements, if necessary for nutritional support
  • If you are on thyroid hormones for less than five years, most people find that they respond far better to natural thyroid hormone supplementation that has both T1, T2, T3 and T4, not just T4 like Synthroid. Armour Thyroid and Nature-Thyroid are the best known, but compounding pharmacists can also produce natural thyroid hormone prescriptions.

The more you can rid your body of the toxic halides, the more iodine your body will be able to hang onto, and the better your thyroid will function.

Laura Power, MS, PhD, LDN, offers these suggestions for increasing secretion of fluorine and bromine::

  • High-dose iodine
  • High-dose vitamin C
  • Unrefined sea salt
  • Epsom salts baths
  • Sweating in a far infrared sauna

The Future of Natural Thyroid Drugs

This is a surprising and shocking injustice that is occurring in the U.S. right now.

The FDA has shut down natural desiccated thyroid drug production and distribution by three major firms, and is now calling the century-old natural remedy an “unapproved drug.”

One of the ways you can typically differentiate a natural physician from a conventional one is by the type of thyroid hormone replacement therapy they prescribe. Natural physicians will almost exclusively used desiccated thyroid hormone products like Armour Thyroid.

I have put thousands of patients on this and it was my consistent experience that most did far better on these than the synthetic versions. About the only exception were people that were taking synthetics for longer than 10 years. Seems like their body had a tough time adjusting back.

Taking desiccated thyroid hormone off the market will cause harm, danger and damage to hundreds of thousands and perhaps more than that, unless they are allowed access to this safe and superior thyroid replacement.

Two other major manufacturers/distributors now have long-term backorders for their bioidentical hormone products, which include Armour, Nature-Throid, and Westroid.

The uncertainty about the future of natural thyroid drug options has many patients and practitioners concerned, and the Save Natural Thyroid Coalition has been formed in response.

Along with recently holding its first kickoff teleconference to discuss the future of natural desiccated thyroid (NDT) drugs, the Save Thyroid Coalition has also created the Save Natural Thyroid YouTube channel, where patients and practitioners can create and post videos supporting natural thyroid.

I am actually serving on this committee and going to support it with as much media exposure is required to prevent this travesty of justice. It is depriving patients of a valid and natural way to support their thyroid function that has typically been damaged by toxins and stress.

They’ve also formed a Save Natural Thyroid Facebook Group to strategize and help keep thyroid patients informed. If you or anyone you love uses bioidentical hormones, you may want to join this group to keep up on the latest updates.

If you’re newly diagnosed with hypothyroidism, or have not been on synthetic hormones for very long, I strongly recommend Armour Thyroid — a natural porcine thyroid extract, which provides not only T3 and T4, but also T1 and T2, which will help normalize your hormone response.

The fact that the FDA may now severely limit, or eliminate, this option is distressing, as it is clearly the best option for many people.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/10/20/signs-symptoms-and-solutions-for-poor-thyroid-function.aspx

Is the FDA Poised to Ban a Century-Old Natural Remedy?

thyroid, bioidentical hormones, FDA, hormonesMajor Pharmaceuticals has put out a press release saying that they’ve been forced to shut down production of all natural desiccated thyroid drugs, a treatment for hypothyroidism that has been in use for over a century. Major received notice from the FDA that their complete line of desiccated thyroid drugs can no longer be manufactured, and that the FDA is pulling the designation that allowed them to sell these drugs.

Major is also saying that the FDA is requiring that all manufacturers that wish to continue manufacturing submit an NDA or ANDA (New Drug Application or Abbreviated New Drug Application) for approval. Desiccated thyroid drugs were in use in the early 1900’s, and already on the market when the government regulatory groups to oversee medications were formed, so they never went through the new drug application process.

Biotech, Time Cap Labs, and Major are no longer manufacturing natural desiccated thyroid drugs. RLC and Forest are now the last makers of natural desiccated thyroid drugs in the U.S., and their products are unavailable or in short supply in throughout the nation.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/09/19/is-the-fda-poised-to-ban-a-century-old-natural-remedy.aspx

Report Links Power Lines to Cancer

After looking at a database of 850 patients diagnosed with lymphatic and bone marrow cancers between 1972 and 1980, researchers from the University of Tasmania and Britain‘s Bristol University found that living near high-voltage power lines might increase the risk of leukemia, lymphoma, and related conditions later in life.

People who lived within 328 yards of a power line up to the age of five were five times more likely to develop cancer. Those who lived within the same range to a power line at any point during their first 15 years were three times more likely to develop cancer as an adult.

Internal Medicine Journal September 2007; 37(9):614-9

Physorg.com August 24, 2007


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2007/09/18/report-links-power-lines-to-cancer.aspx

The World Economic Forum’s Partnerships Can Threaten Privacy

With many focusing on tomorrow’s Cyber Polygon exercise, less attention has been paid to the World Economic Forum’s real ambitions in cybersecurity — to create a global organization aimed at gutting even the possibility of anonymity online. With the governments of the US, UK and Israel on board, along with some of the world’s most powerful corporations, it is important to pay attention to their endgame, not just the simulations.

Amid a series of warnings and simulations in the past year regarding a massive cyber attack that could soon bring down the global financial system, the “information sharing group” of the largest banks and private financial organizations in the United States warned earlier this year that banks “will encounter growing danger” from “converging” nation-state and criminal hackers over the course of 2021 and in the years that follow.

The organization, called the Financial Services Information Sharing and Analysis Center (FS-ISAC), made the claim in its 2021 “Navigating Cyber” report, which assesses the events of 2020 and provides a forecast for the current year. That forecast, which casts a devastating cyber attack on the financial system through third parties as practically inevitable, also makes the case for a “global fincyber [financial-cyber] utility” as the main solution to the catastrophic scenarios it predicts.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, an organization close to top FS-ISAC members has recently been involved in laying the groundwork for that very “global fincyber utility” — the World Economic Forum, which recently produced the model for such a utility through its Partnership against Cybercrime (WEF-PAC) project.

Not only are top individuals at FS-ISAC involved in WEF cybersecurity projects like Cyber Polygon, but FS-ISAC’s CEO was also an adviser to the WEF-Carnegie Endowment for International Peace report that warned that the global financial system was increasingly vulnerable to cyber attacks and was the subject of the first article in this 2-part series.

Another article, published earlier this year at Unlimited Hangout, also explored the WEF’s Cyber Polygon 2020 simulation of a cyber attack targeting the global financial system. Another iteration of Cyber Polygon is due to take place tomorrow July 9th and will focus on simulating a supply chain cyber attack.

A major theme in these efforts has not only been an emphasis on global cooperation, but also a merging of private banks and/or corporations with the State, specifically intelligence and law enforcement agencies.

In addition, many of the banks, institutions and individuals involved in the creation of these reports and simulations are either actively involved in WEF-related efforts to usher in a new global economic model of “stakeholder capitalism” or are seeking to imminently introduce, or are actively developing, central bank-backed digital currencies, or CBDCs.

In addition, and as mentioned in the first article in this series, a cyber attack like those described in these reports and simulations would also provide the perfect scenario for dismantling the current failing financial system, as it would absolve central banks and corrupt financial institutions of any responsibility.

The convergence of several concerning factors in the financial world, including the end of LIBOR at the end of year and the imminent hyperinflation of globally important currencies, suggests that the time is ripe for an event that would not only allow the global economy to “reset”, but also absolve the fundamentally corrupt financial institutions around the world from any wrongdoing.

Instead, faceless hackers can be blamed and, given recent precedents in the US and elsewhere, any group or nation state can be blamed with minimal evidence as politically convenient. This report will closely examine both FS-ISAC’s recent predictions and the WEF Partnership against Cybercrime, specifically the WEF-PAC’s efforts to position itself as the cybersecurity alliance of choice if and when such a catastrophic cyber attack cripples the current financial system.

Of particular interest is the call by both FS-ISAC and the WEF Partnership against Cybercrime to specifically target cryptocurrencies, particularly those that favor transactional anonymity, as well as the infrastructure on which those cryptocurrencies run. Though framed as a way to combat “cybercrime”, it is obvious that cryptocurrencies are to be unwanted competitors for the soon-to-be-launched central bank digital currencies.

In addition, as this report will show, there is a related push by WEF partners to “tackle cybercrime” that seeks to end privacy and the potential for anonymity on the internet in general, by linking government-issued IDs to internet access. Such a policy would allow governments to surveil every piece of online content accessed as well as every post or comment authored by each citizen, supposedly to ensure that no citizen can engage in “criminal” activity online.

Notably, the WEF Partnership against Cybercrime employs a very broad definition of what constitutes a “cybercriminal” as they apply this label readily to those who post or host content deemed to be “disinformation” that represents a threat to “democratic” governments.

The WEF’s interest in criminalizing and censoring online content has been made evident by its recent creation of a new Global Coalition for Digital Safety to facilitate the increased regulation of online speech by both the public and private sectors.

FS-ISAC, Its Influence and Its Doomsday “Predictions” for 2021

FS-ISAC officially exists to “help ensure the resilience and continuity of the global financial services infrastructure and individual firms against acts that could significantly impact the sector’s ability to provide services critical to the orderly function of the global economy.”

In other words, FS-ISAC allows the private financial services industry to decide on and coordinate sector-wide responses regarding how financial services are provided during and after a given crisis, including a cyber attack. It was tellingly created in 1999, the same year that the Glass-Steagall Act, which regulated banks after the onset of the Great Depression, was repealed.

Though FS-ISAC’s members are not publicly listed on the group’s website, they do acknowledge that their membership includes some of the world’s largest banks, Fintech companies, insurance firms and payment processors.

On their board of directors, the companies and organizations represented include CitiGroup, Bank of America, Wells Fargo and Morgan Stanley, among others, strongly suggesting that FS-ISAC is largely a Wall Street-dominated entity. SWIFT, the society that manages inter-bank communication and dominates it globally, is also represented on FS-ISAC’s board.

Collectively, FS-ISAC members represent $35 trillion in assets under management in more than 70 countries. FS-ISAC also has ties to the World Economic Forum due to the direct involvement of its then-CEO Steve Silberstein in the WEF-Carnegie initiative and FS-ISAC’s participation in the initiative’s “stakeholder engagements.”

There is also the fact that some prominent FS-ISAC members, like Bank of America and SWIFT, are also members of the WEF’s Centre for Cybersecurity, which houses the WEF Partnership against Cybercrime project. At the individual level, the founding director of FS-ISAC, Charles Blauner, is now an agenda contributor to the WEF who previously held top posts at JP Morgan, Deutsche Bank and CitiGroup.

He currently is a partner and CISO-in-residence of Team8, a controversial start-up incubator that operates as a front for Israeli military intelligence in tech-related ventures that is part of the WEF Partnership against Cybersecurity. Team8’s CEO and co-founder and the former commander of Israeli intelligence outfit Unit 8200, Nadav Zafrir, has contributed to WEF Centre for Cybersecurity policy documents and WEF panels on the “Great Reset“.

In addition, current FS-ISAC board member Laura Deaner, CISO of Northwestern Mutual, served as the co-chair for the WEF’s Global Futures Council on Cybersecurity. Teresa Walsh, the current global head of intelligence for FS-ISAC, will be a speaker at the WEF’s Cyber Polygon 2021 regarding how to develop an international response to ransomware attacks. Walsh previously worked as an intelligence analyst for Citibank, JP Morgan Chase and the US Navy.

The FS-ISAC’s recent report is worth looking at in detail for several reasons, with the main one being the sheer power and influence that its members, both known and unknown, hold over the current fiat-based financial system. The full report is exclusive to FS-ISAC members, but a “thematic summary” is publicly available.

The FS-ISAC’s recent report on “Navigating Cyber” in 2021 is “based on the contributions of our members and the resulting trend analysis by FS-ISAC’s Global Intelligence Office (GIO)” and includes several “predictions” for the current calendar year.

The group’s GIO, led by Teresa Walsh, soon-to-be speaker at Cyber Polygon 2021, also “coordinates with other cybersecurity organizations, companies and agencies around the world” in addition to its intelligence gathering from FS-ISAC members.

At the beginning of 2020, when the COVID-19 crisis resulted in an overt push towards digitization, FS-ISAC launched a “new secure chat and intelligence sharing platform” that “provided a new way for members to discuss threats and security trends.” It is fair to assume that the private discussions on this platform directly informed this report.

According to the recent FS-ISAC report, the main trends and threats discussed by its members through this service over the past year were “third party risks”, such as the risk presented by major hacks of third party service providers, like the SolarWinds hack, and “geopolitical tensions.”

The report contains several “predictions for 2021 and beyond.” The first of these predictions is that adversarial nation-states will team up with “the cybercriminal underworld” in order to “obfuscate their activity and complication attribution.”

FS-ISAC does not provide evidence of this having happened, but supporting this claim makes it easier to blame state governments for the activities of cybercriminals when politically convenient without concrete evidence. This has happened on several occasions with recent high-profile hacks, most recently with SolarWinds.

As noted in previous reporting, prominent companies that contract for the US government and military, like Microsoft, and intelligence-linked cybersecurity companies, are often the sole sources for such narratives in the past and, in those cases, do not provide evidence, instead qualifying such assertions as “likely” or “probable.”

Even mainstream outlets reporting on FS-ISAC’s “predictions” noted that “FS-ISAC did not point to specific examples of spies relying on such tradecraft in the past,” openly suggesting that there is little factual basis to support this claim.

Other predictions focus on how third party service providers, such as SolarWinds and the more recently targeted Kaseya, will dominate, affecting potentially many thousands of companies across multiple sectors at once.

However, the SolarWinds hack was not properly investigated, merely labeled by US intelligence as having “likely” ties to “Russian” state-linked actors despite no publicly available evidence to support that claim. Instead, the SolarWinds hack appears to have been related to its acquisition of an Israeli company funded by intelligence-linked firms, as discussed in this report from earlier this year.

SolarWinds acquired the company, called Samanage, and integrated its software fully into its platform around the same time that the backdoor used to execute the hack was placed into the SolarWinds platform that was later compromised.

FS-ISAC also predicts that attacks will cross borders, continents, and verticals, with increasing speed. More specifically, it states that the cyber pandemic will begin with cyber criminals that “test attacks in one country and quickly scale up to multiple targets in other parts of the world.” FS-ISAC argues that it is therefore “critical to have a global view on cyber threats facing the sector in order to prepare and defend against them.”

Since FS-ISAC made this prediction, cyber attacks and especially ransomware have been occurring throughout the world and targeting different sectors at a much more rapid pace than has ever been seen before. For instance, following the Colonial Pipeline hack in early May, Japan, New Zealand, and Ireland all experienced major cyber attacks, followed by the JBS hack on June 1.

The hack of Kaseya, believed by some to be just as consequential and damaging as SolarWinds, took place about a month later on July 2, affecting thousands of companies around the world. The final, and perhaps the most important, of these predictions is that “economic drivers towards cybercrime will increase.”

FS-ISAC claims that the current economic situation created by COVID-related lockdowns will “make cybercrime an ever more attractive alternative,” noting immediately afterwards that “dramatic increases in cryptocurrency valuation may drive threat actors to conduct campaigns capitalising on this market, including extortion campaigns against financial institutions and their customers.”

In other words, FS-ISAC views the increase in the value of cryptocurrency as a direct driver of cybercrime, implying that the value of cryptocurrency must be dealt with to reduce such criminal activities. However, the data does not fit these assertions as the use of cryptocurrency by cybercriminals is low and getting lower.

For instance, one recent study found that only 0.34% of cryptocurrency transactions in 2020 were tied to criminal activity, down from 2% the year prior. Though the decrease may be due to a jump in cryptocurrency adoption, the overall percentage of crime-linked crypto transactions is incredibly low, a fact obviously known to FS-ISAC and its members.

However, cryptocurrency does present a threat to the plans by FS-ISAC members and its partners to begin producing digital currencies controlled either by approved private entities (like Russia’s Sbercoin) or central banks themselves (like China’s digital yuan).

The success of that project depends on neutering the competition, which is likely why FS-ISAC subtitled its 2021 report as “the case for a global fincyber utility,” with such a utility framed as necessary to defend the financial services industry against cyber threats.

cyber pandemic

The WEF’s Partnership Against Cybercrime

Conveniently for FS-ISAC, there is already a project that hopes to soon become this very global fincyber utility – the WEF Partnership Against Cybercrime (WEF-PAC). Partners in WEF-PAC include some of the world’s largest banks and financial institutions, such as Bank of America, Banco Santander, Sberbank, UBS, Credit Suisse and the World Bank, as well as major payment processors such as Mastercard and PayPal.

Also very significant is the presence of all of the “Big Four” global accounting firms: Deloitte, Ernst & Young, KPMG and PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Think tanks/non-profits, including the Council of Europe, Third Way and the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace as well as the WEF itself, are also among its members as are several national government agencies, like the US Department of Justice, FBI and Secret Service, the UK’s National Crime Agency and Israel’s National Cyber Directorate.

International and regional law enforcement agencies, such as INTERPOL and EUROPOL, both of which are repeat participants in the WEF’s Cyber Polygon, are also involved.

Silicon Valley is also well represented with the presence of Amazon, Microsoft, and Cisco, all three of which are also major US military and intelligence contractors. Cybersecurity companies founded by alumni and former commanders of Israeli intelligence services, such as Palo Alto Networks, Team8 and Check Point, are also prominent members.

The Israeli intelligence angle is especially important when examining WEF-PAC, as one of its architects and the WEF’s current Head of Strategy for Cybersecurity is Tal Goldstein, though his biography on the WEF website seems to claim that he is Head of Strategy for the WEF as a whole.

Goldstein is a veteran of Israeli military intelligence, having been recruited through Israel’s Talpiot program, which feeds high IQ teenagers in Israel into the upper echelons of elite Israeli military intelligence units with a focus on technology.

It is sometimes referred to as the IDF’s “MENSA” and was originally created by notorious Israeli spymaster Rafi Eitan. Eitan is best known as Jonathan Pollard’s handler and the mastermind behind the PROMIS software scandal, the most infamous Israeli intelligence operation conducted against Israel’s supposed “ally”, the United States.

Due to its focus on technological ability, many Talpiot recruits subsequently serve in Israel’s Unit 8200, the signals intelligence unit of Israeli military intelligence that is often described as equivalent to the US’ NSA or the UK’s GCHQ, before moving into the private tech sector, including major Silicon Valley companies.

Other Talpiot-Unit 8200 figures of note are one of the co-founders of Check Point, Marius Nacht, and Assaf Rappaport, who designed major aspects of Microsoft’s cloud services and later managed that division. Rappaport later came to manage much of Microsoft’s research and development until his abrupt departure early last year.

In addition to his past as a Talpiot recruit and 8 years in Israeli military intelligence, the WEF’s Tal Goldstein had played a key role in establishing Israel’s National Cyber Bureau, now part of Israel’s National Cyber Directorate, now a WEF-PAC partner. The National Cyber Bureau was established in 2013 with the explicit purpose “to build and maintain the State of Israel’s national strength as an international leader in the field” of cybersecurity.

According to Goldstein’s WEF biography, Goldstein led the formation of Israel’s entire national cybersecurity strategy with a focus on technology, international cooperation, and economic growth.

Goldstein was thus also one of the key architects of the Israeli cybersecurity policy shift which took place in 2012, whereby intelligence operations formerly conducted “in house” by Mossad, Unit 8200 and other Israeli intelligence agencies would instead be conducted through private companies that act as fronts for those intelligence agencies. One admitted example of such a front company is Black Cube, which was created by the Mossad to act explicitly as its “private sector” branch.

In 2019, Israeli officials involved in drafting and executing that policy openly yet anonymously admitted to the policy’s existence in Israeli media reports. One of the supposed goals of the policy was to prevent countries like the US from ever boycotting Israel in any meaningful way for violations of human rights and international law by seeding prominent multinational tech companies, such as those based in Silicon Valley, with Israeli intelligence front companies.

This effort was directly facilitated by American billionaire Paul Singer, who set up Start Up Nation Central with Benjamin Netanyahu’s main economic adviser and a top AIPAC official in 2012 to facilitate the incorporation of Israeli start-ups into American companies.

Goldstein’s selection by the WEF as head of strategy for its cybersecurity efforts suggests that Israeli intelligence agencies, as well as Israeli military agencies focused on cybersecurity, will likely play an outsized role in WEF-PAC’s efforts, particularly its ambition to create a new global governance structure for the internet.

In addition, Goldstein’s past in developing a policy whereby private companies acted as conduits for intelligence operations is of obvious concern given the WEF’s interest in simulating and promoting an imminent “cyber pandemic” in the wake of the COVID crisis.

Given that the WEF had simulated a scenario much like COVID prior to its onset through Event 201, having someone like Goldstein as the WEF’s head of strategy for all things cyber ahead of an alleged “cyber pandemic” is cause for concern.

A Global Threat to Justify a Global “Solution”

Last November, around the same time the WEF-Carnegie report was released, the WEF-PAC produced its own “insight report” aimed at “shaping the future of cybersecurity and digital trust.” Chiefly written by the WEF’s Tal Goldstein alongside executives from Microsoft, the Cyber Threat Alliance, and Fortinet, the report offers “a first step towards establishing a global architecture for cooperation” as part of a global “paradigm shift” in how cybercrime is addressed.

The foreword was authored by Jürgen Stock, the Secretary-General of INTERPOL, who had participated in last year’s Cyber Polygon exercise and will also participate in this year’s Cyber Polygon as well. Stock claims in the report that “a public-private partnership against cybercrime is the only way to gain an edge over cybercriminals” (emphasis added).

Not unlike the WEF-Carnegie report, Stock asserts that only by ensuring that large corporations work hand in glove with law enforcement agencies “can we effectively respond to the cybercrime threat.” The report first seeks to define the threat and focuses specifically on the alleged connection between cryptocurrencies, privacy enhancing technology, and cybercrime.

It asserts that “cybercriminals abuse encryption, cryptocurrencies, anonymity services and other technologies”, even though their use is hardly exclusive to criminals. The report then states that, in addition to financially motivated cybercriminals, cybercriminals also include those who use those technologies to “uphold terrorism” and “spread disinformation to destabilize governments and democracies”.

While the majority of the report’s discussion on the cybercrime threat focuses on ransomware, the WEF-PAC’s inclusion of “disinformation” highlights the fact that the WEF and their partners view cybercriminals through a much broader lens.

This, of course, also means that the methods to combat cybercrime contained within the report could be used to target those who “spread disinformation”, not just ransomware and related attacks, meaning that such “disinformation” spreaders could see their use of cryptocurrency, encryption, etc. restricted by the rules and regulations WEF-PAC seeks to promote.

However, the report promotes the use of privacy-enhancing technologies for WEF-PAC members, a clear double standard that reveals that this group sees privacy as something for the powerful and not for the general public.

This broad definition of “cybercriminal” conveniently dovetails with the Biden administration’s recent “domestic terror” strategy, which similarly has a very broad definition of who is a “domestic terrorist.”

The Biden administration’s strategy is also not exclusive to the US, but a multinational framework that is poised to be used to censor and criminalize critics of the WEF stakeholder capitalism model as well as those deemed to hold “anti-government” and “anti-authority” viewpoints.

The WEF-PAC report, which was published several months before the US strategy, has other parallels with the new Biden administration policy, such as its call to crack down on the use of anonymity software by those deemed “cybercriminals” and calling for “international information sharing and cross-border operational cooperation,” even if that cooperation is “not always aligned with existing legislative and operational frameworks.”

In addition, the Biden administration’s strategy concludes by noting that it is part of a broader US government effort to “restore faith” in public institutions. Similarly, the WEF-PAC report frames combatting all types of activities they define as cybercrime necessary to improving “digital trust”, the lack of which is “greatly undermining the benefits of cyberspace and hindering international cyber stability efforts.”

In discussing “solutions”, the WEF-PAC calls for the global targeting of “infrastructures and assets” deemed to facilitate cybercrime, including those which enable ransomware “revenue streams”, i.e. privacy-minded cryptocurrencies, and enable “the promotion of illegal sites and the hosting of criminal content.”

In another section, it discusses seizing websites of “cybercriminals” as an attractive possibility. Given that this document includes online “disinformation” as cybercrime, this could potentially see independent media websites and the infrastructure that allows them to operate (i.e. video sharing platforms that do not censor, etc.) emerge as targets.

The report continues, stating that “in order to reduce the global impact of cybercrime and to systematically restrain cybercriminals, cybercrime must be confronted at its source by raising the cost of conducting cybercrimes, cutting the activities’ profitability and deterring criminals by increasing the direct risk they face.”

It then argues, unsurprisingly, that because the cybercrime threat is global in scope, it’s “solution must also be a globally coordinated effort” and says the main way to achieve this involves “harnessing the private sector to work side by side with law enforcement officials.”

This is very similar to the conclusions of the WEF-Carnegie report, released around the same time as the WEF-PAC report, which called for private banks to work alongside law enforcement and intelligence agencies as well as their regulators to “protect” the global financial system from cybercriminals.

The Framework for a Global Cyber Utility

This global coordination, per the WEF-PAC, should be based around a new global system uniting law enforcement agencies from around the world with cybersecurity companies, large corporations such as banks, and other “stakeholders.”

The stakeholders that will make up this new entity, the structure of which will be discussed shortly, is based around 6 founding principles, several of which are significant. For example, the first principle is to “embrace a shared narrative for collective action against cybercrime.”

Per the report, this principle involves the stakeholders comprising this organization having “joint ownership of a shared narrative and objective for the greater good of reducing cybercrime across all industries and globally.”

The second principle involves the stakeholders basing their cooperation on “long-term strategic alignment.” The fifth principle involves “ensuring value for participating in the cooperation”, with such that “value” or benefit being “aligned with the public and private sectors’ strategic interests.”

In other words, the stakeholders of this global cyber utility will be united in their commitment to a common, public-facing “narrative” that serves their organizations’ “strategic interests” over the long term.

The decision to emphasize the term “shared narrative” is important as a narrative is merely a story that does not necessarily need to reflect the truth of the situation, thus suggesting that stakeholders merely be consistent in their public statements so they all fit the agreed upon narrative.

Many organizations that are related to or are formally part of WEF-PAC are deeply invested in Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs) as well as efforts to digitalize and thus more easily control nearly every sector of the global economy and to regulate the internet.

Therefore, it is reasonable to conclude that many of these groups may look to justify regulations and other measures that will advance these agendas in which they have long-term “strategic interests” through the promotion of a “shared narrative” that is deemed most palatable to the general public, but not necessarily based in fact.

Business is business, after all. The WEF-PAC report concludes with its three-tier model for “a global architecture for public-private cooperation against cybercrime.”

The top level of this system is referred to as the “global partnership”, which will build on the existing WEF-PAC and will “bring together international stakeholders to provide an overarching narrative and commitment to cooperate; foster interaction within a global network of entities that drive efforts to fight cybercrime; and facilitate strategic dialogues and processes aiming to support cooperation and overcome barriers in the long term.”

Elsewhere in the report it notes that chief among these “barriers” are existing pieces of legislation in many countries that prohibit law enforcement agencies and government regulators from essentially fusing their operations with private sector entities, particularly those they are meant to either oversee or prosecute for wrongdoing.

In addition, the report states that this “global partnership” would focus on fostering “a shared narrative to increase commitment and affiliation”, amplifying “operational cooperation” between the public and private sectors and improving “stakeholders’ understanding of respective interests, needs, goals, priorities and constraints.”

The second level of this system is called “permanent nodes” in the report. These are defined as “a global network of existing organizations that strive to facilitate public-private cooperation over time.” The main candidates to occupy the role of “permanent nodes” are “non-profit organizations that are already spurring cooperation between private companies and law enforcement agencies,” specifically the Cyber Threat Alliance and the Global Cyber Alliance.

Both are discussed in detail in the next section. Other potential “permanent nodes” mentioned in the report are INTERPOL, EURPOL and, of course, FS-ISAC. While the top level “global partnership” represents the “strategic level” of the organization, the “permanent node” level represents the “coordination level” as the nodes would supply necessary infrastructure, operational rules, and management, as well as “strategic dialogue” among member organizations.

public private cooperation against cybercrime global architecture

The permanent nodes would directly enable the third level of the organization, which are referred to as “Threat Focus Cells” and are defined as representing the organization’s “operational level.” The WEF-PAC defines these cells as “temporary trust groups consisting of both public- and private-sector organizations and they would focus on discreet cybercrime targets or issues.”

Per the report, each cell “would be led jointly by a private-sector participant, a law enforcement participant and a designated representative” of the permanent node that is sponsoring the cell.

Ideally, it states that cells should have between 10 to 15 participants and that “private-sector participants would typically represent organizations that can act to enhance cybersecurity on behalf of large constituencies, that have unique access to relevant cybersecurity information and threat intelligence, or that can contribute on an ecosystem-wide basis.”

Thus, only massive corporations need apply. In addition, it states that law enforcement members of threat cells should “represent national-level agencies” or hail from “network defence or sector-specific agencies” at the national, regional or international level. Cell activities would range from “scouting a new threat” to “an infrastructure takedown” to “arrests.”

The WEF-PAC concludes by stating that “in the coming months, the Partnership against Cybercrime Working Group will continue to prepare the implementation of these concepts and widen the scope of the initiative’s efforts”, including by inviting “leading companies and law enforcement agencies” to pledge their commitment to the WEF-PAC’s efforts.

It then states that “the suggested architecture could eventually evolve into a newly envisioned, independent Alliance to Combat Global Cybercrime.” “In the interim,” it continues, “the World Economic Forum and key stakeholders will work together to promote the desired processes and assess the validity of the concept.”

Meet the “Nodes”

Among the organizations that the WEF-PAC highlights as shoo-in candidates for “permanent nodes” in their proposal for a global cyber utility, there are two that stand out and are worth examining in detail. They are the Cyber Threat Alliance (CTA) and the Global Cyber Alliance (GCA), both of which are formal members of the WEF-PAC.

The Cyber Threat Alliance (CTA) was initially founded by the companies Fortinet and Palo Alto Networks in May 2014, before McAfee and Symantec joined CTA as co-founders that September. Today, Fortinet and Palo Alto Networks are charter members alongside Check Point and Cisco, while Symantec and McAfee are affiliate members alongside Verizon, Sophos and Avast, among several others.

The mission of CTA is to allow for information sharing among its many partners, members, and affiliates in order to “allow the sharing of threat intelligence to better protect their customers against cyberattacks and to make the defense ecosystem more effective,” according to CTA’s current chief executive. CTA, per their website, also focuses on “advocacy” aimed at informing policy initiatives of governments around the world.

CTA is directly partnered with FS-ISAC and the WEF-PAC as well as the hawkish, US-based think tank the Aspen Institute, which is heavily funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Carnegie Corporation.

Other partners include: MITRE Engenuity, the “tech foundation for public good” of the secretive US intelligence and military contractor MITRE; the Cyber Peace Institute, a think tank seeking “peace and justice in cyberspace” that is largely funded by Microsoft and Mastercard (both of which are WEF partners and key players in ID2020); the Cybersecurity Coalition, whose members include Palo Alto Networks, Israeli intelligence front company Cybereason, intelligence and military operative Amit Yoran’s Tenable, Intel, AT&T, Google, McAfee, Microsoft, Avast and Cisco, among others; the Cybercrime Support Network, a non-profit funded by AT&T, Verizon, Google, Cisco, Comcast, Google and Microsoft, among others; and the Global Cyber Alliance, to be discussed shortly.

Another key partner is the Institute for Security and Technology (IST), which has numerous ties to the US military, particularly DARPA, and the US National Security State, including the CIA’s In-Q-Tel. The CEO of the Cyber Peace Institute, Stéphane Duguin, was a participant in Cyber Polygon 2020, and the CEO of the Cybercrime Support Network, Kristin Judge, contributed to the WEF-PAC report. Some of the CTA’s partners are listed in the WEF-PAC report as other potential “permanent nodes.”

The CTA is led by Michael Daniel, who co-wrote the WEF-PAC report with Tal Goldstein. Daniel, immediately prior to joining CTA as its top executive in early 2017, was a Special Assistant to former President Obama and the Cybersecurity coordinator of Obama’s National Security Council.

In that capacity, Daniel developed the foundations for the US government’s current national cybersecurity strategy, which includes partnerships with the private sector, NGOs and foreign governments.

Daniel has stated that some of his cybersecurity views at CTA are drawn “in part on the wisdom of Henry Kissinger” and he has been an agenda contributor to the WEF since his time in the Obama administration. Daniel is one of Cyber Polygon 2021’s experts and will be speaking alongside Teresa Walsh of FS-ISAC and Craig Jones of INTERPOL on how to develop an international response to ransomware attacks.

The fact that CTA was founded by Fortinet and Palo Alto Networks is notable as both companies are intimately related. Fortinet’s founder Ken Xie, who sits on CTA’s board and is a founding member and advisor to the WEF’s Centre for Cybersecurity, previously founded and then ran NetScreen Technologies, where Palo Alto Network’s founder, Nir Zuk, worked after his earlier company OneSecure was acquired by NetScreen in 2002.

Zuk is an alumni of Israeli intelligence’s Unit 8200 and was recruited directly out of that unit in 1994 by Check Point, a CTA charter member, WEF-PAC member and tech company founded by Unit 8200 alumni. Zuk has been open about maintaining close ties to the Israeli government while operating the California-based Palo Alto Networks. Fortinet, for its part, is known for hiring former US intelligence officials, including former top NSA officials.

Fortinet is a US government and US military contractor and came under scrutinyin 2016 after a whistleblower filed suit against the company for illegally selling the US military technological products that had been disguised in order to appear as American-made, but were actually made in China. Fortinet’s Derek Manky is one of the co-authors of the WEF-PAC report.

Check Point’s co-founder and current CEO, Gil Shwed, currently sits on CTA’s board of directors and is also a WEF “Global Leader for Tomorrow”, in addition to his longstanding ties to the Israeli National Security State and his past work for Unit 8200. Another Check Point top executive, Dorit Dor, is a member of the WEF Centre for Cybersecurity and a speaker at Cyber Polygon 2021, where she will speak on protecting supply chains.

Gil Shwed, over the past few weeks, has been making numerous appearances on US cable television news to warn that a “cyber pandemic” is imminent. In addition to those appearances, Shwed produced a video on June 23rd asking “Is a Cyber Pandemic Coming?“, in which Shwed answers with a resounding yes.

The term “cyber pandemic” first emerged on the scene last year during WEF chairman Klaus Schwab’s opening speech at the first WEF Cyber Polygon simulation and it is notable that the WEF-connected Shwed uses the same terminology.

Schwab also stated in that speech that the comprehensive cyber attacks that would comprise this “cyber pandemic” would make the COVID-19 crisis appear to be “a small disturbance in comparison.”

In addition to CTA, another international alliance named by the WEF-PAC as a “permanent node” candidate is the Global Cyber Alliance (GCA). The GCA was reportedly the idea of Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. who “knew that there had to be a better way to confront the cybercrime epidemic” back in 2015.

GCA was born through discussions Vance held with William Pelgrin, former President and CEO of the Center for Internet Security (CIS) and one of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s top cyber advisors. Pelgrin and Vance later approached Adrian Leppard, the then- police commissioner of the City of London, the controversial financial center of the UK. Unsurprisingly, CityUK, the City of London’s main financial lobby group, is a member of the GCA.

If one is familiar with Cyrus Vance’s time as Manhattan DA, his interest in meaningfully pursuing crime, particularly if committed by the wealthy and powerful, is laughable. Vance infamously dropped cases against and/or declined to prosecute powerful New York figures, including Donald Trump’s children and Harvey Weinstein, subsequently receiving massive donations to his re-election campaigns from Trump family and Weinstein lawyers.

His office also once lobbied a New York court on behalf of intelligence-linked pedophile Jeffrey Epstein, who was seeking at the time to have his registered sex offender status downgraded.

Vance’s office later U-turned in regards to Weinstein and Epstein after more and more accusers came forward and after considerable press attention was paid to their misdeeds. Vance also came under scrutiny after dropping charges against former head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Dominique Strauss-Kahn, for the sexual assault of a hotel maid.

Vance used $25 million in criminal asset forfeiture funds to create GCA, in addition to funding from Pelgrin’s CIS and the Leppard-run City of London police. Its official yet opaque purpose is “to reduce cyber risk” on a global scale in order to create “a secure, trustworthy internet.” Their means of accomplishing this purpose is equally vague as they claim to “approach this challenge by building partnerships and creating a global community that stands strong together.”

For all intents and purposes, GCA is a massive organization whose members seek to create a more regulated, less anonymous internet. The role of the Center for Internet Security (CIS) in the GCA is highly significant, as CIS is the non-profit that manages key bodies involved in the maintenance of critical US infrastructure, including for US state and local governments and for federal, state and local elections.

CIS, which is also partnered with CTA, also works closely with the main groups responsible for protecting the US power grid and water supply systems and is also directly partnered with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

Its board of directors, in addition to William Pelgrin, includes former high-ranking military and intelligence operatives (i.e. the aforementioned Amit Yoran), former top officials at the DHS and the National Security Agency (NSA) and one of the main architects of US cyber policy under the administrations of both George W. Bush and Barack Obama.

CIS was created through private meetings between “a small group of business and government leaders” who were members of the Cosmos Club, the “private social club” of the US political and scientific elite whose members have included three presidents, a dozen Supreme Court justices and numerous Nobel Prize winners.

GCA’s main funders are the founders listed above as well as the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, the foundation of the co-founder of Hewlett-Packard (HP), a tech giant with deep ties to US intelligence; Craig Newmark Philanthropies, the “philanthropic” arm of the Craigslist founder’s influence empire; and Bloomberg, the media outlet owned by billionaire and former Mayor of New York Mike Bloomberg.

GCA’s premium partners, which also fund GCA and secure a seat on GCA’s Strategic Advisory Committee, include Facebook, Mastercard, Microsoft, Intel, and PayPal as well as C. Hoare & Co., the UK’s oldest privately owned bank and the fifth oldest bank in the world.

Other significant premium partners include the Public Interest Registry, which manages the .org domain for websites, and ICANN (the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers), that manages much of the Internet’s global Domain Name System (DNS).

Those two organizations together represent a significant portion of website domain name management globally. Notably, the founding chairwoman of ICANN was Esther Dyson, whose connections to Jeffrey Epstein and the Edge Foundation were discussed in a recent Unlimited Hangout investigation.

In terms of partners, GCA is much larger than CTA and other such alliances, most of which are themselves partners of GCA. Indeed, nearly every partner of CTA, including the CTA itself are part of the GCA as is CTA co-founder Palo Alto Networks.

GCA’s partners include several international law enforcement agencies including: the National Police, National Gendarmerie and Ministry of Justice of France, the Ministry of Justice of Lagos, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, the UK Met Police, and the US Secret Service. The state governments of Michigan and New York are also partners.

Several institutions and companies deeply tied to the US National Security State, such as Michael Chertoff’s the Chertoff Group, the National Security Institute, and MITRE, are part of GCA as are some of the most controversial and intelligence-connected cybersecurity companies, such as Crowdstrike and Sepio Systems, another Unit 8200 alumni-founded company whose chairman of the board is former Mossad director Tamir Pardo.

The Israeli intelligence-linked initiative CyberNYC is also a member. Major telecommunication companies like Verizon and Virgin are represented alongside some of the world’s largest banks, including Bank of America and Barclays, as well as FS-ISAC and the UK’s “most powerful financial lobby”, the CityUK. Also crucial is the presence of several media organizations as partners, chief among them Bloomberg.

Aside from Bloomberg and Craig Newmark Philanthropies (which funds several mainstream news outlets and “anti-fake news” initiatives), media outlets and organizations partnered with GCA include Free Press Unlimited (funded by George Soros’ Open Society Foundations, the European Union, and the US, Dutch, Belgian and UK governments), the Institute for Nonprofit News (funded by Craig Newmark, Pierre Omidyar’s Omidyar Network and George Soros’ Open Society Foundations, among others), and Report for America (funded byCraig Newmark Philanthropies, Facebook, Google and Bloomberg).

PEN America, the well-known non-profit and literary society focused on press freedom, is also a member. PEN has become much more closely aligned with US government policy and particularly the Democratic Party in recent years, likely owing to its current CEO being Suzanne Nossel, a former deputy Assistant Secretary of State for International Organizations at the Hillary Clinton-run State Department. The many other members of GCA can all be found here.

The End of Anonymity

The considerable involvement of some of the most powerful corporations in the world from some of the most critical sectors that underpin the current economy, as well as non-profits that manage key internet, government and utility infrastructure in these organizations that comprise WEF-PAC is highly significant and also concerning for more than a few reasons.

Indeed, if all were to follow the call to form a “shared narrative”, whether it is true or not, in pursuit of long-term “strategic interests”, which the WEF and many of its partners directly relate to the rapid implementation of the 4th Industrial Revolution via the “Great Reset”, the WEF-PAC global cyber utility could emerge sooner rather than later.

As evidenced by the architecture put forth by WEF-PAC, the power that organization would have over the public and private sectors is considerable. Such an organization, once established, could usher in long-standing efforts to both require a digital ID to access and use the internet as well as eliminate the ability to conduct anonymous financial transactions.

Both policies would advance the overarching goal of both the WEF and many corporations and governments to usher in a new age of unprecedented surveillance of ordinary citizens.

The effort to eliminate anonymous transactions in digital currency has become very overt in some countries in recent weeks, particularly in the US. For instance, Anne Neuberger, current Deputy National Security Adviser who has deep ties to the US-Israel lobby, stated on June 29 that the Biden administration was considering obtaining more “visibility” into ransomware groups’ activities, particularly anonymous cryptocurrency transactions.

Such efforts could easily cross the line into state surveillance of any and all Americans’ online crypto transactions, especially given the US government’s history of habitually engaging in surveillance overreach in the post-9/11 era. One specific possibility mentioned by Neuberger was to prohibit companies from keeping crypto payments of concern secret, suggesting possible, imminent regulation of cryptocurrency exchanges.

Current efforts, per Neuberger, also include an effort to build “an international coalition” against ransomware, which will likely tie into WEF-PAC given that the FBI, DOJ and US Secret Service are already members.

Neuberger also stated that the recent public-private partnership that took down the Trickbot botnet “should be the kind of operation used to tackle ransomware gangs in the future.” However, that effort, led by WEF partner Microsoft, preemptively took down a network of computers “out of fear that hackers could deploy [that network] to launch ransomware attacks to inhibit election-supporting IT systems” ahead of the US election.

Using Trickbot as the model for future ransomware operations means opening the door to companies like Microsoft taking preemptive action against infrastructure used by people that the government and private sector “fear” may engage in “cybercrime” at some point in the future.

Notably, on the same day as Neuberger’s statements, Congressional representative Bill Foster (D-IL) told Axios that “there’s significant sentiment in Congress that if you’re participating in an anonymous crypto transaction that you are a de facto participant in a criminal conspiracy.” Coming from Rep. Foster, this is quite significant as he is a member of the Financial Services Committee, the Blockchain Caucus and a recently formed Congressional working group on cryptocurrency.

His decision to use the phrase “anonymous crypto transaction” as opposed to a transaction linked to ransomware or criminal activity is also significant, as it suggests that the possibility that complete anonymity is seen to be the target of coming efforts to regulate the crypto space by the US Congress.

While Foster claims to oppose a “completely surveilled environment” for crypto, he qualifies that by stating that “you have to be able to unmask and potentially reverse those [crypto] transactions.”

However, if this becomes government policy, it will mean the only group allowed to have complete anonymity in online financial transactions will be the State and will open the door to the government’s abuse of “unmasking”, which the US government has done in numerous instances over the years through the systematic abuse of FISA warrants.

It is also important to mention that the US is hardly alone in its effort to wipe out online financial anonymity in the crypto world, as several governments that are supporting Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) projects, which includes the US, are either moving towards or have already cracked down on the crypto space.

For example, soon after China introduced the “digital yuan”, it cracked down on bitcoin miners and companies that provide services, including ads and marketing, to crypto-related entities.

This had major implications for the crypto market and resulted in a considerable reduction in bitcoin’s value, which it has yet to fully recover. It is reasonable to assume that other governments will work to aggressively regulate or even ban crypto markets following the introduction of their CBDC projects in order to force widespread adoption of the digital currency favored by the State.

It is also worth highlighting the additional fact that, as China introduced the digital yuan, it also sought to crackdown on cash, stating that the anonymity offered by cash – much like anonymous crypto transactions – could also be used for “illicit activity.” However, there are some obvious holes in the WEF-PAC’s narratives and justifications for its “solutions.”

For example, even if cryptocurrencies are banned or heavily regulated, it is unlikely that this will end cyber attacks, with hackers likely finding a new way to conduct operations that provide them with some sort of financial benefit. Cyber attacks and cybercrime precede the creation of crypto considerably and would continue even if crypto were somehow magically removed from the equation.

In addition, there has been speculation about the nature of the 3 big hacks that took place over the past year: SolarWinds, Colonial and JBS. In the case of SolarWinds, attribution of blame to “Russian hackers” came down to CIA-linkedcybersecurity firm FireEye claiming that the “disciplined” methodology of the hackers could only possibly have been individuals tied to Russia’s government and because FireEye’s CEO received a postcard he “suspects” was Russian in origin.

Left uninvestigated was the firm Samanage, which is linked to the same intelligence networks in which the WEF’s current head of cyber strategy worked for years. Regarding the Colonial pipeline hack, there is the fact that the original narrative was later proven false, as the pipeline itself remained functional, but services were halted due to the company’s concerns about their ability to bill customers properly.

In addition, the US Department of Justice managed to seize the vast majority of the bitcoin ransomware payment Colonial had made, suggesting that extreme regulation of the crypto market may not actually be necessary to deter cybercriminals or recuperate ransomware payments. Surely, WEF-PAC is aware of this because the US Department of Justice is one of its members.

With the JBS hack, there is the fact that the company, the world’s largest meats processor, had partnered with the WEF just months before regarding the need to reduce meat consumption and had begun to heavily invest and acquire non-animal-based alternatives. Blackrock, a major WEF partner, is the 3rd largest shareholder in JBS.

Notably, after the hack, the situation was quickly used to warn of upcoming, widespread meat shortages, even though the disruption of the hack paused operations for just one day. In addition, the JBS hack was supposedly executed by “Russian hackers” being given “safe haven” by Russia’s government.

However, JBS somehow has no problem partnering the WEF, which co-hosts Cyber Polygon alongside the cybersecurity subsidiary of Sberbank, which is majority owned by the same Russian government supposedly enabling JBS’ hackers.

In addition to the effort to regulate crypto, there is also a push by WEF-partnered governments to end privacy and the potential for anonymity on the internet in general, by linking government-issued IDs to internet access. This would allow every piece of online content accessed to be surveilled, as well as every post or comment authored by each citizen, supposedly to ensure that no citizen can engage in “criminal” activity online.

This policy is part of an older effort, particularly in the US, where creating a nationwide “Driver’s License for the Internet” was proposed and then piloted by the Obama administration. The European Union made a similar effort to require government-issued IDs for social media access a few years later.

The UK also launched its Verify digital ID program around the same time, something which former UK Prime Minister and WEF associate Tony Blair has been pushing aggressively to have expanded into a compulsory requirement in recent months. Then, just last month, the EU implemented a sweeping, new digital ID service that could easily be expanded to fit with the Union’s past efforts to link such IDs to access to online services.

As Unlimited Hangout noted earlier this year, the infrastructure for many of these digital IDs, as well as vaccine passports, have been set up so that they are also eventually linked to financial activity and potentially online activity as well.

Ultimately, what WEF-PAC represents is a global organization that aims to neuter anonymity online, whether for financial purposes or for browsing and other activities. It is a global effort combining powerful governments and corporations that seeks to usher in a new age of surveillance that makes such surveillance a requirement to participate in the online world or use online services.

It is being sold to the public as the only way to stop a coming “pandemic” of cybercrime, a crisis taking place largely in murky parts of the internet that few understand or have any direct experience with.

Having to rely on State intelligence agencies and intelligence-linked cybersecurity firms for attribution of these crimes, it has never been easier for corrupt actors in those agencies or their partners to either manufacture or manipulate a crisis that could upend online freedom as we have known it, something these very groups have sought to implement for years.

All of this should serve as a poignant reminder that, as much as our lives have become interconnected with the internet and online activity, the fight to protect human freedom, dignity and liberty against a predatory, global oligarchy is fundamentally one that must take place in the real world, not only online. May the coming “cyber war”, whatever form it takes, remind many that online activism must be accompanied by real world actions and organizing.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2021/07/31/ending-online-anonymity.aspx

North Korean Defector Shares Her Story

Is America spiraling into totalitarianism? All the signs are there, suggesting we’re well on our way. Naomi Wolf, a former adviser to the Clinton administration, has been warning us about this for well over a decade.

In May 2021, I interviewed her about the 10 steps of tyranny, described in her 2007 book, “The End of America.” While we’ve been inching our way toward tyranny for many years, Wolf warns we are now at Step 10. Soon, there will be no turning back — unless we break free, assert our rights starting with our freedom of speech, and put a stop to this transformation.

As noted by Benjamin Franklin, “Whoever would overthrow the liberty of a nation must begin by subduing the freeness of speech.” Similarly, Samuel Adams stated, “For true patriots to be silent, is dangerous.”1

In the video above, Yeonmi Park, a human rights activist and author of “In Order to Live: A North Korean Girl’s Journey to Freedom,” talks about the clear parallels she sees between the United States and North Korea, one of the most repressive countries in the world.

Although she’s been presented in a critical light by an Asia-Pacific owned publication,2 I am a huge fan of Park as she is such an inspiration to warn us of what will happen if we neglect to preserve our hard-won freedoms. Please be sure and watch the much longer second video below. I suspect you too will be moved by what she and millions of others have suffered and are enduring in North Korea.

Park fortunately was able to defect from North Korea to China in 2007 at the age of 13, eventually settling in South Korea two years later, but only after first falling into the hands of human traffickers and being sold into sex slavery for less than $200. Her mother was sold for $65. Park and her mother were eventually able to escape to South Korea through Mongolia.

In 2016, she transferred from a South Korean university to Columbia University in New York. In a June 14, 2021, interview with Fox News,3 Park stated she believes “America’s future may be as bleak as North Korea,” adding that “even North Korea was not this nuts.”

“I expected that I was paying this fortune, all this time and energy, to learn how to think. But they are forcing you to think the way they want you to think,” she told Fox News.“I realized, wow, this is insane. I thought America was different but I saw so many similarities to what I saw in North Korea that I started worrying.”

Not Having Problems Is a Problem

In the video above, Park explains why she told her story to Fox News rather than a more mainstream media outlet. The answer? They were the only one that asked her to share her views.

While the Fox News interview went viral both in the U.S. and South Korea, not a single legacy news outlet picked up the story. This makes sense, considering corporate media are part of the tyrannical network responsible for the implementation of this brainwashing.

In North Korea, the day-to-day problems are life and death problems. The daily threat of starvation, torture, imprisonment without cause, and knowing that the utterance of one wrong political statement will get three generations of your family killed.

“I would rather die a free person than live as a slave,” Park says at the end of her video. “You cannot even fathom what it’s like when you don’t have freedom … America is falling into tyranny … Let us stop this before it is too late.”

Real-World Socialism

In the video above,4 Park is interviewed by Valuetainment host Patrick Bet-David. I know 90 minutes is a long video, but trust me, your life could change if you watch the entire video. If you don’t have time now, just watch it instead of some movie or TV series. I suspect very few of you have any idea that this type of tyrannical oppression and unethical human behavior is rampant in North Korea.

In this hour-and-a-half interview, she delves a lot deeper into what life is like in one of the most oppressive regimes in the world, and what it really means to lose your freedoms. Even certain words have been censored from the North Korean language.

There are no words for “depression” or “stress” for example. The absence of such emotions is further indoctrinated through the one and only available TV channel, where every program highlights the rightness, beauty and benefit of the socialist system, and how wrong capitalist Western systems are. Here are some other examples in real life:

Government tells you what clothes and colors you are allowed to wear
Government tells you what haircuts you are allowed to have, with choices being limited to fewer than 20
Government tells you what kind of makeup you are allowed to use
Government decides what kinds of songs you are allowed to sing and what music you can listen to
Government dictates what kind of dance moves are allowed
Government tells you what kind of movies you can watch
Your profession is dictated by the political class of your parents
Who you can marry is dictated by the political class you were born into
Public executions are routine and everyone in the neighborhood is required to attend, including children. Crimes punishable by death include watching banned movies, reading banned books and criticizing the regime

Every single thing about your life is dictated by the regime. You have no individuality. You have no “personal choices.” Guaranteed, you can say goodbye to gender pronoun preferences. That’s just being pushed right now to lure you into this false idea that the socialist system actually provides you with more of everything — including individuality and individual rights — rather than less.

But if you think about it logically, how can we create an “equitable” society unless all individuality is removed? How can you and I end up in the same place and be treated exactly the same unless everything that separates us — our individual characteristics — are eliminated? The end result is the oppression of everyone and the wasting of everyone’s natural talents.

Corruption is also guaranteed. Regardless of your profession, your salary will not be able to feed you, let alone pay for anything else. As a result, corruption is the norm. Food is also always scarce. Park routinely caught and ate grasshoppers. That was her primary source of protein growing up.

In fact, Park admits that it was hunger that drove her to risk death to escape North Korea with her mother. “I didn’t know I wasn’t free,” she says. “I didn’t know what freedom was. I risked my life for a bowl of rice.”

Reject the ‘New Normal’

The good news is, the would-be tyrants have not won. That said, we have no time to spare. Time is of the essence and we have no time to remain idle, hoping it will all just go back to normal on its own. I can confidently assure you it will not, and you will need to take action. I believe one of the answers is peaceful civil disobedience.

In the U.S., we do have the Second Amendment, which allows citizens to own and bear arms. That said, peaceful disobedience is still the primary and preferred strategy. We must also rally behind legislation that prevents the alteration of laws that safeguard our freedoms.

I believe that we will ultimately stop the globalists’ drive toward global tyranny. It’s not going to be easy. It may take years, and it may get far worse before it gets better.

The founders of the U.S. fled repressive societies or were children or grandchildren of those who did. They had to personally reckon with criminalized speech, arbitrary arrests and state sanctioned torture and even murder. The men who signed the Declaration of Independence knew that if they lost the war, they would be executed for treason.

The forefathers of the United States were radicals, fighting for liberty and personal freedoms. They had a vision of reality that was an absolute slap in the face of what the rest of the world tolerated. They were willing to sacrifice their lives to turn that vision into a reality.

Park discusses this in the featured video at the top of this article. How the story of our Founding Fathers — who cared enough about equality and human rights to sacrifice everything to achieve it — has been twisted.

It requires an illogical mindset to get our history so backwards. But each of us, individually, must also accept our share of the blame, for as Thomas Jefferson said, “The price of freedom is eternal vigilance.”5

We must also realize that the current cancel culture trend is not about tossing a dusty past into the trash bin and highlighting more pleasant aspects of our history. Far from it. As noted by The Most Important News:6

“A huge national debate about our most important national symbols has erupted, and it is rapidly becoming one of our hottest political issues. But what most people don’t realize is that this isn’t really a debate about our past.

Rather, it is a debate about what our future is going to look like. Those that are demonizing the American flag, the national anthem, the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution are not doing so for the purpose of winning a historical debate.

Their true goal is to ‘cancel’ those symbols and replace them with new ones, because our existing national symbols represent values and principles that are diametrically opposed to the values and principles that they wish to impose upon society.

If they ultimately get their way, the United States will eventually become an extremely repressive high tech dystopian society where absolutely no dissent is tolerated.”

Focus on Taking Action Locally

Get involved in your child’s school, and make sure that what is being taught is in line with your values which, hopefully, if you’re reading this, this includes personal freedom, which is what the United States was indeed founded upon. Remember, the American system of governance places the bulk of the power at the local level, not at the federal level.

Government is currently fighting to centralize power at the top, but they can only do that if we let them. In the United States, local action can eventually have national impact, and that is how we peacefully take our power back and ensure our freedom. We’ve had this power all along. We may have just forgotten how to use it.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2021/07/31/dictatorship-totalitarianism-socialism.aspx

Another Way to Kill Small U.S. Farmers: Seize Their Bank Accounts on Phony Charges

By Dr. Mercola

In its latest move against small farmers who dare to operate outside the umbrella of CAFOs (confined animal feeding operations) and Monsanto-dominated crops, the U.S. government has seized $70,000 from a small dairy farmer in Maryland. The feds did this under the “Bank Secrecy Act,” which requires that paperwork be filled out for any cash deposit in excess of $10,000.

The farmers, Randy Sowers and his wife Karen, made deposits totaling more than $295,000 from May 2011 to February 2012, but each transaction was less than $10,000.

Now they are being accused of “structuring,” a violation of federal currency reporting requirements, as the feds are accusing them of deliberately depositing money in increments of less than $10,000 in an attempt to evade Currency Transaction Reporting requirements.

Government Seizes $70,000 On What Grounds?

The dairy farmer’s “crime” stems from his weekly sales at local farmers’ markets. The sales averaged about the same amount each week and, dutifully, the Sowers deposited them. They’d reportedly never even heard of the Bank Secrecy Act or “structuring,” but that was of no interest to the feds—the consistency of the amount the Sowers deposited, always less than $10,000, raised red flags to the feds, who claimed that this was indicative of a crime.

The government promptly seized about $70,000 from the bank account, then issued a warrant for the seizures. As reported by Food Freedom News:1

“The Dept. of Justice has since sued to keep $63,000 of the Sowers’ money, though they committed no crime other than maintaining their privacy. Without funds, they will be unable to make purchases for the spring planting. When a similar action was taken against Taylor’s Produce Stand last year, the feds seized $90,000, dropped the charges, and kept $45,000 of Taylor’s money.

Knowing that most farms operate on a very thin margin, such abuse of power wipes out a family’s income, and for a bonus, the feds enhance the monopoly power of Monsanto, Big Dairy and their supply chain.… Former Maryland assistant U.S. attorney Steven Levin told the paper [City Paper], “The emphasis is on basically seizing money, whether it is legally or illegally earned. It can lead to financial ruin for business owners, and there’s a potential for abuse here by the government.””

The raid on the Sowers was conducted by an agency created in 2009 to go after money-laundering criminals. The agency started out with a bang by seizing $1.2 billion from a real money launderer, but it appears that what it’s interested in now is making criminals out of small business persons, including small farmers.

Why Are Family Farms Under Attack?

 

 

If they’re not seizing bank accounts, it seems the government will find other ways to attack small farmers. A family farm in rural Michigan—and possibly others—may be shut down by a new state law that designates certain breeds of hogs as a threat to neighboring hog breeders and croplands.

Basically, the fight is over the definition of feral hogs vs. domestic hogs. The dictionary definition of “feral” refers to an animal running wild. But Michigan authorities have taken it a step further and extended the definition to include enclosed private hunting preserves and small farms that house what authorities call an “invasive species” of hogs.

There is no genetic test to determine whether the species on these farms are truly invasive, so authorities are basing their cases against these farmers solely on visual observations. The Michigan Department of Natural Resources (MDNR) uses this vague description to describe the prohibited hogs, and makes it clear that this does notapply to the domestic hogs raised on CAFOs:2

“Wild boar, wild hog, wild swine, feral pig, feral hog, feral swine, Old world swine, razorback, eurasian wild boar, Russian wild boar (Sus scrofa Linnaeus). This subsection does not and is not intended to affect sus domestica involved in domestic hog production.”

Other descriptions supplied by the MDNR include such a wide variety of characteristics that virtually any pig other than the familiar pink domestic breed raised on CAFOs could potentially be deemed “feral”:

  • Erect or folded/floppy ear structure
  • Straight or curly tail
  • Solid black, wild/grizzled, solid red/brown, black and white spotted, or black and red/brown spotted coat colorations
  • “Other characteristics” not currently known to the MDNR

Interestingly, the Big Pork industry has been planning this anti-feral pig campaign for years, and even bragged about it in a 2010 newsletter.3 It was the same newsletter where they declared a win against the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) in Ohio, where HSUS was seeking legislation to end the practice of sow gestation stalls (cages so small the sow can’t turn around or move).

What this means for residents of Michigan is that soon they will be unable to purchase sustainably and humanely grown meat from the Mangalitsa “wooly” hogs raised on Baker’s Green Acres farm. This particular breed is being raised by only a handful of small farms across the country; whereas more than 2 million pigs are slaughtered each week in the United States, only about 50 of them are Mangalitsas (which have been called the “it” pig by the New York Times, as several high-end restaurants and specialty markets have featured the rich, naturally raised meat4).

But, of course, this issue is about much more than pasture-raised pork from a heritage breed … it’s about your ability, your right, to purchase and consume pure, unadulterated food – a right that continues to be threated for those living in the United States.

FDA Also Threatens Your Right to Food Choice …

Another glaring example of government going out of its way to prohibit your access to pure, unprocessed food is the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) war against raw milk. When the Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund (FTCLDF) filed a lawsuit against the FDA over their raw milk ban, stating that banning raw milk in interstate commerce is unconstitutional, the FDA rebutted with the following extremely concerning and outrageous statements:

  • “There is no absolute right to consume or feed children any particular food.”
  • “There is no ‘deeply rooted’ historical tradition of unfettered access to foods of all kinds.”
  • “Plaintiffs’ assertion of a ‘fundamental right to their own bodily and physical health, which includes what foods they do and do not choose to consume for themselves and their families’ is similarly unavailing because plaintiffs do not have a fundamental right to obtain any food they wish.”
  • FDA’s brief goes on to state that “even if such a right did exist, it would not render FDA’s regulations unconstitutional because prohibiting the interstate sale and distribution of unpasteurized milk promotes bodily and physical health.”
  • “There is no fundamental right to freedom of contract.”

Since when did the FDA have authority to tell you what you can and cannot eat and feed your children? Apparently they believe they’ve had it all along. If you go by these assertions, it means the FDA has the authority to prohibit any food of their choosing and make it a crime for you to seek it out. If, one day, the FDA deems tomatoes, broccoli or cashews capable of causing you harm (which is just as ludicrous as their assertions that raw milk is harmful), they could therefore enact such a ban and legally enforce it.

What this means is that freedom of food choice is a myth if you live in the United States, and this simply is not acceptable. No one, and certainly not any government agency, should be able to restrict your access to pure, unadulterated food, but the dairy industry and other industrial farmers that depend on CAFOs employ powerful lobbyists will stop at nothing to persuade government to remove the small farmers from the market entirely. The truth is, if enough people start demanding naturally, sustainably and humanely raised meat, dairy and produce, the giant farming monopolies that currently dominate the market would not be able to compete.

Their businesses depend on pesticides, CAFOs, genetically modified seeds, growth hormones and the like … so when they see all-natural creameries like the one operated by Randy Sowers and his wife Karen, or natural farms like Bakers Green Acres gaining loyal and growing customer bases, they get nervous – and they get the government involved in any way they can.

Please Support Your Local Small Farms

The healthiest food choices are nearly always those that come from responsible, high-quality, sustainable sources.

This is why I encourage you to support the small family farms in your area. This includes not only visiting the farm directly, if you have one nearby, but also taking part in farmer’s markets and community-supported agriculture programs. Now that summer is almost here in the United States, fresh produce and other wonderful whole foods are available in abundance. Not only is the food so much tastier and healthier when you get it from sustainable, non-CAFO sources, but there is something about shopping for fresh foods in an open-air, social environment that just feels right. An artificially lit, dreary supermarket — home to virtually every CAFO food made — just can’t compete.

If you want to experience some of these benefits first-hand, here are some great resources to obtain wholesome food that supports not only you but also the environment:

  1. Alternative Farming Systems Information Center, Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)
  2. Farmers’ Markets — A national listing of farmers’ markets
  3. Local Harvest — This Web site will help you find farmers’ markets, family farms, and other sources of sustainably grown food in your area where you can buy produce, grass-fed meats, and many other goodies.
  4. Eat Well Guide: Wholesome Food from Healthy Animals — The Eat Well Guide is a free online directory of sustainably raised meat, poultry, dairy, and eggs from farms, stores, restaurants, inns, and hotels, and online outlets in the United States and Canada.
  5. Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture(CISA) — CISA is dedicated to sustaining agriculture and promoting the products of small farms.
  6. FoodRoutes — The FoodRoutes “Find Good Food” map can help you connect with local farmers to find the freshest, tastiest food possible. On their interactive map, you can find a listing for local farmers, CSA’s, and markets near you.

Finally, for more information on the ongoing attacks against small family farms in the United States consider watching Farmageddon: The Unseen War on American Family Farms, a documentary by Kristin Canty. But I warn you … the injustices it contains may just make your blood boil.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/05/15/raw-milk-farmers-on-money-laundering-crimes.aspx

Juul Buys Out 1 Issue of Health Journal for Positive Studies

The American Journal of Health Behavior1 published a special May/June 2021 edition dedicated solely to Juul. In essence, Juul Labs sponsored the entire issue of this national journal and devoted it to research funded or written by the company.

Juul began as a Silicon Valley darling in 2007.2 But the history of Juul Labs started two years before that when Stanford graduates James Monsees and Adam Bowen conceived “The Rational Future of Smoking,” which was their graduate thesis and prediction of the future.3

After graduation the two founded Ploom Inc. and in 2012,4 the company introduced Pax, which became a popular way of consuming cannabis. By 2015 the company was renamed Pax Labs and they introduced the Juul e-cigarette. In 2017, Pax labs separated from Juul Labs to focus on other products, leaving Juul Labs to manufacture and distribute nicotine e-cigarettes.

By 2018 they were under investigation by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for sales to underaged users. In 2019, experts across the country recognized a unique lung infection and injury associated with vaping.5 By February 18, 2020, there were 2,807 people who had been hospitalized and 68 confirmed deaths.

Investigations for underage sales, lung injuries and the sale of contaminated Juul pods6 prompted the company to spend 2020 in what The New York Times reported as a “reset” mode.7 As the FDA considers the future of the company, Juul is trying prove the product has public health benefit.

JUUL Paid This Journal to Publish Their ‘Science’

The FDA has set September 9, 2021, as a deadline for deciding whether products offered by Juul Labs have enough public health benefit to stay on the market.8 Juul has recorded a loss of sales of $500 million and cut their workforce by 75% since 2019.9 The company that was once valued at $38 billion, is now valued under $5 billion.

While waiting for the FDA to deliberate, the company teamed with Piney Associates and the Centre for Substance Use Research (CSUR) to develop documentation that purportedly demonstrates the vaping device is a safer alternative to cigarettes.10

Once the papers were completed, Juul spent $51,000 with the American Journal of Health Behavior to publish 11 studies they funded or helped write in a special edition publication.11 The company paid an additional $6,500 so the information would have open access on the internet.

The published works are meant to support the company’s premarket tobacco product application, which the company has not made public. Once the Juul issue was published, the journal’s editor-in-chief, Elbert D Glover, Ph.D., retired, without announcing his plans.

Before leaving, he said the journal had followed their standard protocol before publishing the studies — but three editorial board members still resigned in protest. The journal published conflict of interest disclosures12 which showed that all the studies were either written by scientists employed by Juul Labs or the research was funded by the company.13

The Company Pays to Squash Bad Press

The company is intent on creating positive press and squashing negative press as they wait for the FDA to make its decision. According to The New York Times,14 if the company survives the end of 2021, they are facing thousands of lawsuits.

Fourteen states and the District of Columbia are seeking money to combat what has become a vaping crisis in the youth. The Justice Department has the company under criminal investigation and there is multidistrict litigation in the California Federal Court.

The company’s first hurdle was to address the lawsuit in North Carolina filed by the North Carolina attorney general. According to Business Insider, Juul Labs agreed to pay $40 million and change their business practices to avoid a jury trial over questions of whether the company allegedly marketed their product to teens.15

In addition to the financial award, CNN reported some of the stipulations that the company must follow as stated by North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein. These include:16

Cannot sell any flavored nicotine pods in North Carolina without authorization from the FDA Cannot use marketing strategies aimed at young people
Cannot use influencer advertising, outdoor ads near schools or sponsor concerts or sporting events Cannot use most social media advertising
Cannot use anyone under age 35 in advertising Cannot claim the e-cigarettes are safer or better for health than combustible cigarettes
The company must use a barcode age-verification system of identification and the system must be tested using mystery shoppers at 1,000 stores each year Online sales are restricted to no more than two devices per month and 10 per year

CNN reported Juul stated restrictions are in line with their desire to curb underage smoking. A company spokesperson from Juul Labs spoke with a CNN reporter about how the award would be distributed, saying:17

“We look forward to working with Attorney General Stein and other manufacturers on the development of potential industry-wide marketing practices based on science and evidence. In addition, we support the Attorney General’s desire to deploy funds to generate appropriate science to support North Carolina’s public health interventions to reduce underage use.”

As the company publicly agrees with the restrictions to their marketing and sales, their federal lobbying has remained robust. According to the Center for Responsive Politics,18 which tracks giving in the political arena, Juul spent $3.9 million in 2020, down $400,000 from 2019. Altria, the tobacco company that bought 35% of Juul in 201819 spent $10.6 million in 2020, which is $150,000 more than they spent in 2019.20

The Marlboro Man Wants the FDA to Trust JUUL

In September 2019, the CEO of Juul Labs stepped down and KC Crosthwaite, longtime tobacco executive, stepped into the role.21 Once installed, Crosthwaite stopped some of the controversial lobbying campaigns, closed many of Juul’s foreign markets, took mint flavored pods off the market and suspended U.S. advertising.22

In a company email he alluded to the fact that Juul must place earning the trust of the consumer at the center of what they do. However, as The New York Times23 points out, each of these changes was made at gunpoint. And the gun was pointed by the FDA, which threatened to shut down their business.

Matthew L Myers, president of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, characterized the business relationship between Altria and Juul Labs this way: “The Marlboro man rode into Juul and now wants us to trust them.”24

At the end of Monsees’ and Bowen’s thesis presentation at Stanford, they played a video during which a user of the new product said, “This product is the greatest thing I have ever encountered in my life. I will smoke this with enthusiasm and develop a nicotine habit that will follow me to my grave.”25

A journalist from the Verge summarized the situation after an interview with the author of “The Devil’s Playbook: Big Tobacco, Juul, and the Addiction of a New Generation,” writing that the podcast listeners would recognize other industry themes:26

“There’s a big industry that’s slow to adapt, there’s a startup that’s moving fast and breaking things, there are regulators around the world who don’t quite know what to do, and at the center of it all, there’s a big question about our society’s relationship with a product that might be bad for people — and that people still want.”

JUUL Purposely Sold Tainted Product and Marketed It to Kids

Siddharth Breja, formerly Juul’s senior vice president for global finance, claims in a lawsuit he filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California that he was fired in 2019 in retaliation for criticizing the sale of at least 1 million contaminated and expired mint-flavored nicotine pods by Juul.27

The type of contamination or its source was not revealed in the lawsuit. Breja was quoted in The New York Times saying Juul “has jeopardized and continues to jeopardize public health and safety and the lives of millions of consumers, many of them children and teens.”28 The reporter wrote:29

“Mr. Breja detailed a culture of indifference to safety and quality-control issues among top executives at the company and quoted the then-chief executive Kevin Burns saying at a meeting in February: ‘Half our customers are drunk and vaping’ and wouldnʼt ‘notice the quality of our pods.’”

Breja’s lawsuit alleged the contaminated mint-flavored pods were the result of decisions at Juul Labs to fill a huge demand for that flavor. This happened after the FDA pulled all other flavored pods in retail stores but continued to allow Juul to sell mint and menthol.

It wasn’t long before the demand outstripped the supply. In the complaint, Breja said then-chief executive Kevin Burns told employees, “You need to have an IQ of 5 to know that when customers don’t find mango, they buy mint.”30

Once Breja learned of the contaminated pods, and that they could not be recovered, he urged the company to issue a recall or a warning. One week later, Breja was fired. Despite the proximate action, Juul spokesperson Ted Kwong dismissed the claims and said he was fired “because [Breja] failed to demonstrate the leadership qualities needed in his role.”31

Can Super-Addictive Nicotine Reduce Your Desire to Smoke?

David Kessler was head of the FDA from 1990 to 1997 during the tobacco investigation. The Los Angeles Times quotes him saying, “Addiction is central to the business model. With their nicotine salts, Juul has found the Holy Grail.”32

The Los Angeles Times reviewed more than 3,000 pages of internal company records released through the Freedom of Information Act showing Juul used research done by Reynolds Laboratories more than four decades before the release of JuulSalts.

Myers told the Los Angeles Times reporter, “Reynolds succeeded in developing the technology, but never really succeeded in turning it into a transformative breakthrough. Juul did that.”33

The data from the Freedom of Information Act release also showed Juul collected information on how to maximize nicotine delivery and literature collected by Reynold’s laboratory on how the drug impacts adolescent brains. The idea was to develop a new generation of nicotine addicts. Robert Jackler, Stanford University researcher, focused on teen e-cig use, commenting:34

“Reynolds successfully engineered this formula, but it was Juul that ultimately vaporized it — and achieved what Big Tobacco never could. They studied Reynold’s literature, took advantage of it, and addicted a new generation of American youth.”

At a 2018 tech startup conference, Monsees said on stage, “Certainly, the nicotine salt chemistry was one of the big breakthroughs.”35

The premise behind any good business model is to acquire and then keep customers. The food processed industry does this by ascertaining the “bliss point” in their product, which is the exact amount of sugar, salt and fat to optimize taste and make the product so perfectly engineered that you want more and more.36

Despite Juul Labs’ public assertion that their product is designed to be self-limited as a means of getting people to stop smoking combustible cigarettes, this model would soon put them out of business. Instead, you only have to look at the product itself and the history of the company’s push toward addiction to know the objective is to garner more customers and make more money — not to lose customers.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2021/07/30/health-studies-on-juul.aspx

Newest MATH+ Protocol

Have you heard of the MATH+ protocol to treat COVID-19? One of its creators, Dr. Joseph Varon, who leads the COVID-19 unit at United Memorial Medical Center (UMMC) in Houston, has been trying to get the word out about it since the start of the pandemic. “We have options for patients now. We just need to make those options available,” he said, speaking with broadcast journalist Ivory Hecker.1

Hecker has a story in her own right, as she was fired from FOX 26 Houston in June 2021 after she interrupted a live news segment to tell viewers the station had prohibited her from sharing certain information, adding that she’s “not the only reporter being subjected to this.”2

Censorship is an ongoing problem that’s reached unprecedented levels during the pandemic, and is the reason why you probably haven’t heard of the MATH+ protocol, despite its immense success in saving lives over the last year. Varon has been at the frontlines throughout, marking his 366th consecutive day treating COVID-19 patients on March 20, 2021.3

From March 20, 2021, to May 21, 2021, there were 1,293 hospitalized COVID-19 patients at United Memorial Medical Center. Eighty-six of them died, resulting in a 6.7% death rate. That’s about half the 12.5% death rate for hospitalized COVID-19 patients reported by the National Center for Health Statistics over the same period.4

MATH+ Protocol Saves Lives, but Media Is Ignoring It

Early on in the pandemic, five critical care physicians formed the Front Line COVID-19 Critical Care Working Group (FLCCC), which developed the highly effective COVID-19 treatment protocol known as MATH+. Varon was among them, as was Dr. Paul Marik, a critical care doctor at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital in East Virginia. The protocol for hospitalized patients was initially based on the following:

  • Intravenous Methylprednisolone
  • High-dose intravenous Ascorbic acid (vitamin C)
  • Plus optional treatments Thiamine, zinc and vitamin D
  • Full dose low molecular weight Heparin

In the beginning, only supportive care was offered to COVID-19 patients. Even today, people with COVID-19 are told to stay home and isolate until they’re lacking oxygen, a recommendation that Marik believes is costing lives, since early treatment with MATH+ is so effective:5

“While we may not have the best answers, we do have some answers and to tell people to stay at home and isolate so they go blue is an absurdity that’s actually causing lots of damage because we are now waiting for the virus to, in some people, cause the cytokine storm. And when they arrive with that state it is very difficult to reverse it and stop it and bring them back.”

The MATH+ protocol led to high survival rates. Out of more than 100 hospitalized COVID-19 patients treated with the MATH+ protocol as of mid-April 2020, only two died. Both were in their 80s and had advanced chronic medical conditions.6 But according to Varon, despite their unusual successes, reporters weren’t interested in why the patients at his hospital were more likely to survive.7

The physicians behind MATH+ are clear that their protocols are fluid and change in response to the data. As such, there have been two major changes since MATH+ was first released, one involving ivermectin and another involving hydroxychloroquine (HCQ).

Ivermectin Added to MATH+

Ivermectin was added as a core medication in FLCCC’s protocols for the prevention and treatment of COVID-19 in October 2020.8 Ivermectin — a broad-spectrum antiparasitic that also has anti-inflammatory activity — has been found to reduce COVID-19 mortality by 81%.9 The drug is also safe, inexpensive and widely available, with decades of clinical usage suggesting it has a “high margin of safety.”10

By December 2020, FLCCC, noting the extreme success of the drug, called for widespread adoption of ivermectin, both as a prophylactic and for the treatment of all phases of COVID-19.11,12 In one prevention trial, 58 volunteers took 12 milligrams of ivermectin once per month for four months.

Only four (6.96%) came down with mild COVID-19 symptoms during the May through August 2020 trial period.13 In comparison, 44 of 60 health care workers (73.3%) who had declined the medication were diagnosed with COVID-19. In June 2021, Varon and colleagues published a review in the American Journal of Therapeutics, which included meta-analyses based on 18 randomized controlled treatment trials of ivermectin in COVID-19.14 The results were impressive, showing:15

  • Large, statistically significant reductions in mortality, time to clinical recovery and time to viral clearance when used for treatment
  • Significantly reduced risks of contractive COVID-19 with regular ivermectin use

The data are so strong that, at the India Institute of Medical Sciences, all health care workers now take two 0.3 mg/kg doses of ivermectin 72 hours apart, then repeat the dose monthly to prevent COVID-19.16 And in regions that have implemented ivermectin distribution campaigns, associated reductions in case fatality rates results.17 According to the review:18

“Finally, the many examples of ivermectin distribution campaigns leading to rapid population-wide decreases in morbidity and mortality indicate that an oral agent effective in all phases of COVID-19 has been identified.”

Marik believes that a mass distribution program of ivermectin, together with melatonin, vitamin D and aspirin, could end the pandemic. By assuming everyone is infected and treating with this safe combination of inexpensive compounds, Marik says, “We’ll eliminate SARS-CoV-2. It will be gone.”19 This isn’t likely to happen, though, due to “economic and political factors that benefit from the ongoing pandemic.”20

HCQ Replaced With Quercetin

HCQ, a zinc ionophore, was part of the MATH+ protocol for the first six months of the pandemic. (They have recently swapped quercetin for HCQ.) At this time, the death rate for COVID-19 patients at Varon’s UMMC was 4.4%, compared to a death rate of about 20% at other hospitals.21

Hecker first spoke with Varon about HCQ in August 2020, and he spoke favorably about using the controversial drug, noting that out of more than 300 COVID-19 patients treated at UMMC, they had a 95% success rate.22

Misinformation and outright lies were spun about HCQ, including fabricated research, in an apparent effort to suppress and prevent its widespread use. Other physicians, including Dr. Vladimir Zelenko, a practicing physician in a Jewish community in Monroe, New York, have had great success using HCQ for COVID-19.23

However, in June 2020, the National Institutes of Health halted a clinical trial of HCQ after stating that, while the drug wasn’t harmful, it also wasn’t beneficial to hospitalized patients.24

Backlash ensued following the NIH announcement, and FLCCC phased out the use of HCQ in its protocols. Their latest I-MASK+ protocol, updated June 30, 2021,25 recommends quercetin instead. Quercetin, also a zinc ionophore, is an over-the-counter alternative to HCQ and works much like HCQ does. According to Marik:26

“Experimental and early clinical data (published in high impact journals) suggests that this compound has broad antiviral properties (including against coronavirus) and acting at various steps in the viral life cycle. It also appears to be a potent inhibitor of heat shock proteins (HSP 40 and 70) which are required for viral assembly.”

Ivermectin Continues To Be Censored, US on ‘Media Lockdown’

In the video above, Hecker speaks with several recovered COVID-19 patients who received the MATH+ protocol. One, Manuel Espinoza, a urologist from Texas, was on a slow decline using the conventional COVID protocols. Then his wife found out about the MATH+ protocol online, and Espinoza was emergency airlifted to UMMC. “Within hours” of the treatment his health had turned around, he said, and “within days, just immense improvement.”27

Yet, Varon said that every time he mentioned ivermectin on social media, “he went to Facebook jail.” Reporters also told him, multiple times, that they were banned from reporting on certain COVID-19 drug treatments.28 Similar censorship was experienced by Dr. Pierre Kory, who was also a part of the group that formed FLCCC.

On December 8, 2020, Kory testified to the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, which held a hearing on “Early Outpatient Treatment: An Essential Part of a COVID-19 Solution.” He called on the NIH, CDC and FDA to review the expansive data on ivermectin to prevent COVID-19, keep those with early symptoms from progressing and help critically ill patients recover:29,30

Despite his impassioned pleas and astonishing science to back them up, the treatment was not only ignored by the committee but promptly eviscerated.31Meanwhile, media reports claimed ivermectin was unproven and the World Health Organization also refused to endorse it.

YouTube removed Kory’s testimony, which had nearly 9 million views, calling it a danger to the community.32 Kory says that while his research on ivermectin has gotten lots of attention worldwide, it’s gotten zero in the U.S. — “U.S. is on a media lockdown,” he said.33 Varon agreed, telling Hecker that “no one” is asking about the MATH+ protocol. “Right now everyone is interested in vaccination.”34

MATH+ Protocol Is Available in 23 Languages

FLCCC’s I-MASK+ protocol can be downloaded in full,35 giving you step-by-step instructions on how to prevent and treat the early symptoms of COVID-19. FLCCC also has protocols for at-home prevention and early treatment, called I-MASS, which involves ivermectin, vitamin D3, a multivitamin and a digital thermometer to watch your body temperature in the prevention phase and ivermectin, melatonin, aspirin and antiseptic mouthwash for early at-home treatment.

Household or close contacts of COVID-19 patients may take ivermectin (18 milligrams, then repeat the dose in 48 hours) for post-exposure prevention.36FLCCC also has a management protocol — I-RECOVER37 — for long haul COVID-19 syndrome. The protocols are translated into 23 different languages to provide widespread, free access to this lifesaving information, including how to get ivermectin.38

FLCCC remains hopeful that ivermectin will be formally adopted into national or international COVID-19 treatment guidelines in the near future. But, as Hecker noted, the inexpensive medication faces a major hurdle:39

“Had there been an existing known, safe and effective treatment for COVID-19, Emergency Use Authorization of a vaccine for the virus would be prohibited by law. Could that have been part of the motivation for the strange censorship of certain COVID-19 treatments that we witnessed over the past year at news and social media corporations?”


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2021/07/30/math-plus-protocol.aspx

Children Are Safe From COVID-19

We’ve known from the very beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic that children were at exceptionally low risk for hospitalization and death from this infection. Despite that, massive efforts are underway to get a needle in the arm of every child.

At present, COVID-19 injections are authorized for emergency use in children as young as 12 in the U.S.,1 and vaccine makers are moving forward with plans to get authorization for children as young as 6 months.

Fortunately, there are glimmers of hope, here and there. In the U.K., children will not be eligible to receive a COVID shot unless they have underlying conditions that make them more vulnerable to infection or live with a high-risk person. As reported by The Guardian, July 19, 2021:2

“The opinion of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) expands the eligibility for children, after a previous decision that vulnerable 16- and 17-year-olds could get vaccinated … [T]he advisory body said:

‘The health benefits in this population are small, and the benefits to the wider population are highly uncertain. At this time, JCVI is of the view that the health benefits of universal vaccination in children and young people below the age of 18 years do not outweigh the potential risks.’”

Vulnerabilities that would make children over the age of 12 eligible for COVID injection include severe neuro-disabilities, Down’s syndrome, immunosuppression and multiple or severe learning disabilities.

If you ask me, this is a rather curious list, seeing how neurodevelopmental problems are unlikely to make you more prone to viral infection. We already know the high-risk factors for COVID-19 are things like obesity and multiple chronic diseases — not neurological problems and intellectual deficiencies.

At the risk of sounding like a conspiracy theorist, this list is uncomfortably similar to that of Hitler’s T4 program. This was an involuntary euthanasia campaign where the incurably sick, physically and mentally handicapped, psychologically ill and elderly were selectively murdered by the medical establishment.

COVID-19 Deaths in Children Extremely Rare

Overall, the risk of COVID-19 to children of all ages is so small as to be inconsequential, learning disabilities and chromosomal irregularities or not. A study3 posted July 7, 2021, which looked at deaths occurring in children in the U.K. during the first 12 months of the pandemic, found 99.995% of children diagnosed with COVID-19 survived.

In all, between March 2020 and February 2021, only 25 children under the age of 18 died directly as a result of SARS-CoV-2 infection. (An additional 61 children had positive test results when they died, but their death was attributed to other causes.) This gives us an absolute mortality rate for children of 2 per 1 million. As noted by the authors:4

“SARS-CoV-2 is very rarely fatal in CYP [children and young people], even among those with underlying comorbidities. These findings are important to guide families, clinicians and policy makers about future shielding and vaccination.”

Childhood Vaccination Push Built on Flimsy Evidence

In the United States, a total of 335 children under 18 have died with a COVID-19 diagnosis on their death certificate.5 The CDC estimates the infection fatality rate from COVID-19 among children zero to 17 years old is 20 per 1 million.6 This is likely a significant overestimation, however.

In the British study above, they specifically differentiated between those who actually died from COVID-19, meaning there was no other underlying condition that contributed to their death, and those who simply tested positive at the time of death but died from other causes.

This has not been done in the U.S., so we don’t know how many of those 335 children had underlying conditions that contributed or directly caused their death. As noted by Marty Makary in a Wall Street Journal Opinion piece dated July 19, 2021:7

“Without these data, the CDC Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices [ACIP] decided in May that the benefits of two-dose vaccination outweigh the risks for all kids 12 to 15.

I’ve written hundreds of peer-reviewed medical studies, and I can think of no journal editor who would accept the claim that 335 deaths resulted from a virus without data to indicate if the virus was incidental or causal, and without an analysis of relevant risk factors such as obesity.”

To remedy this shortcoming, Makary and colleagues at Johns Hopkins teamed up with the nonprofit FAIR Health to analyze the health insurance data of approximately 48,000 children under 18 diagnosed with COVID-19 between April and August 2020.

As it turns out, none of the children who died were free of preexisting medical conditions such as cancer. “If that trend holds, it has significant implications for healthy kids and whether they need two vaccine doses,” Makary says.8

Overall, children appear naturally immune against COVID-199 and are not significant vectors of transmission either.10 So, there’s really no need to place draconian COVID restrictions on children out of fear for their own safety or anyone else’s.

Death Statistics Were Illegally Inflated From the Start

Makary also points out that we’ve already established that COVID-19 mortalitystatistics have been vastly overinflated in the U.S.11 In early June 2021, Alameda County in California lowered its reported death toll from COVID-19 by 25%, after state health officials insisted that deaths only be attributed to COVID-19 if SARS-CoV-2 infection was a direct or contributing factor.12

As detailed in “CDC Violated Law to Inflate COVID Cases and Fatalities,” investigation has revealed the CDC inflated fatalities by as much as 96%. They did this by illegally altering the way deaths are reported. Had the old guidelines remained in place, the COVID-19 death toll as of August 23, 2020, in the U.S. would have been 9,684.

As you may recall, in late August 2020, the CDC admitted that only 6% of the total death count had COVID-19 listed as the sole cause of death. The remaining 94% had had an average of 2.6 comorbidities or preexisting health conditions that contributed to their deaths.13 As of August 23, 2021, the CDC reported 161,392 COVID-related fatalities. Multiplied by 6%, you get an actual death toll of 9,684.

It’s hard to believe anyone would be willing to shut down commerce in an entire state over such a number. It’s also hard to believe people would line up to take an unproved and dangerous experimental gene modification injection based on a mortality risk this low.

Unfortunately, we’ve been lied to for so long, many are still effectively brainwashed with the continuous propaganda from mainstream news and public health officials that have long since abandoned their commitment to integrity.

Parents Clamor to Enroll Their Children in COVID Trials

Mainstream media have since the very beginning ignored and hidden data showing COVID-19 isn’t as bad as initially feared. And now they’re ignoring and hiding data showing the COVID shots are worse than suspected. Wired Magazine, for example, blames parents’ apprehension to have their children injected with experimental gene therapy on right-wing politics rather than actual data.14

Wired also reports that more parents have volunteered their children for clinical COVID-19 trials than trial sites have spaces for which, to me, suggests many are still clueless about the risks of these injections, as well as the risk posed by SARS-CoV-2 infection.

Fauci Blasted for Latest Mask Recommendation

In related news, Dr. Anthony Fauci recently faced backlash after saying children aged 2 and older should continue to wear masks.15 During an interview with MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell, Fauci said:

“Unvaccinated children of a certain age greater than 2 years old should be wearing masks. No doubt about that. That’s the way to protect them from getting infected, because if they do, they can then spread the infection to someone else.”

It’s tiring, all of these outrageous and health damaging lies — no doubt about that. Another thing there’s no doubt about is that Fauci has changed his mind on the usefulness of masks more times than some of us have actually donned said masks.

In response to Fauci’s declaration that children need to be forced to wear masks to protect adults, New York Post columnist Karol Markowicz tweeted, “I can’t believe it’s July 2021 and this man is still spouting nonsense on our televisions without any serious follow-up questions. What an embarrassment.”16

Children Are Not at Risk

Getting back to the issue of COVID jabs, all available data suggest COVID-19 is of no significant concern for children. Their risk of being hospitalized or dying from COVID-19 is actually lower than their risk of being hospitalized or dying from the flu.17

For comparison, more than 2,000 American children and teens died in car crashes in 2019,18 and accidental drowning claims the lives of nearly 1,000 children each year.19 Even unintentional drug overdoses claim more lives than COVID-19 in this age group. In 2016, unintentional drug poisoning killed 761 children.20

Why isn’t there a national outrage about these drug-related deaths, seeing how the 2016 statistics show that more than TWICE the number of children most likely have died from overdoses during the pandemic than supposedly died from COVID-19?

There’s also no solid evidence to assume children pose a transmission risk to adults. Besides, 90% of American seniors have now received their COVID shots,21 so by the logic of the official narrative, the most vulnerable adults now have the best herd immunity available and are individually protected with the best modern medicine supposedly has to offer.

Importantly, since children’s risk is so minuscule, there’s really no legal framework for an emergency use authorization of COVID injections for children. Still, the Food and Drug Administration and vaccine makers push forward with that exact plan. Hopefully, they’ll be stopped.

July 19, 2021, America’s Frontline Doctors filed a motion to stop the emergency use authorization of COVID injections for children under 18, anyone with natural immunity and anyone who has not been given proper informed consent.22,23

In their motion, the group points out that the prerequisite health emergency no longer exists, that COVID shots do not prevent SARS-CoV-2 infection, that adequate treatment alternatives exist, and that the known risks of COVID gene modifying injections outweigh any potential benefit for these groups.

They also include a sworn statement by a CDC whistleblower, a computer programmer, who claims the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) under-reports deaths by a factor of five or more. The whistleblower estimates the number of deaths actually may have been around 45,000 as of July 9, 2021.

Vaccinating Children to Benefit Adults Is Unethical

An opinion piece in The BMJ24 by Peter Doshi, Elia Abi-Jaoude and Claudina Michal-Teitelbaum also highlights why we must not force children to take the COVID shot simply because it might help vulnerable adults. They write:25

“While there is wide recognition that children’s risk of severe covid-19 is low, many believe that mass vaccination of children may … also prevent onward transmission, indirectly protecting vulnerable adults and helping end the pandemic. However, there are multiple assumptions that need to be examined when judging calls to vaccinate children against covid-19 …

Even if one assumes protection against severe covid-19, given its very low incidence in children, an extremely high number would need to be vaccinated in order to prevent one severe case. Meanwhile, a large number of children with very low risk for severe disease would be exposed to vaccine risks, known and unknown.

Thus far, Pfizer’s mRNA vaccine has been judged by Israel’s government as likely linked to symptomatic myocarditis, with an estimated incidence between 1 in 3000 to 1 in 6000 in men ages 16 to 24. Furthermore, the long term effects of gene-based vaccines, which involve novel vaccine platforms, remain essentially unknown …

Given all these considerations, the assertion that vaccinating children against SARS-CoV-2 will protect adults remains hypothetical.

Even if we were to assume this protection does exist, the number of children that would need to be vaccinated to protect just one adult from a bout of severe covid-19 — considering the low transmission rates, the high proportion of children already being post-covid, and most adults being vaccinated or post-covid — would be extraordinarily high.

Moreover, this number would likely compare unfavorably to the number of children that would be harmed, including for rare serious events. A separate, but crucial question is one of ethics. Should society be considering vaccinating children, subjecting them to any risk, not for the purpose of benefiting them but in order to protect adults? We believe the onus is on adults to protect themselves.”

Doshi was even more blunt in his June 10, 2021, public comment26 to the FDA’s Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee. There, he pointed out that the FDA can only authorize the use of a medical product in a given population if the benefit outweighs the risk in that same population.

This means that even if adults were to benefit, the COVID shots cannot be authorized for children unless children will actually benefit from it themselves. Since when, in the history of public health, have children been sacrificed to protect the sick and elderly? Public health authorities have completely reversed the conventional risk/reward analysis.

In the case of COVID-19 injections, children cannot benefit, seeing how they only have a 0.005% risk of death in the first place. Meanwhile, healthy children have died shortly after the jabs, dozens of cases of heart inflammation have been reported, and Pfizer’s biodistribution study27,28 raises serious questions about the shot’s potential to cause infertility.

Since demonstrated risks far outweigh demonstrated benefits in children, the vaccines also fail to meet the biologics license application required for ultimate market approval. Last but not least, since there’s no “unmet need,” there’s no need to rush the approval of these injections for children.

CDC Is Deliberating Lowering the COVID Injection Death Toll

While the exact number of deaths from these COVID shots remains uncertain — VAERS reports 12,313 deaths29 as of July 13, 2021, and the CDC whistleblower estimates the death toll at 45,000 or higher — we can unequivocally state that the number is record-breaking high. There’s no vaccine in modern medical history that even comes close. The risk is extraordinary, which is precisely why we must protect our children from it.

Speaking of the CDC, I just discovered it slashed the number of deaths reported to VAERS from 12,313 as of July 13, 2021, to 6,079. In what appears to be a deliberate attempt at deception, the CDC “rolled back” its July 19, 2021, adverse events report to statistics from the previous week. I’ll explain. Take note of the specific dates and death totals in each of the following excerpts. The July 13 report reads as follows:30

Reports of death after COVID-19 vaccination are rare.More than 334 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines were administered in the United States from December 14, 2020, through July 12, 2021. During this time, VAERS received 6,079 reports of death (0.0018%) among people who received a COVID-19 vaccine.”

The original July 19 report (saved on Wayback) initially read as follows:31

Reports of death after COVID-19 vaccination are rare.More than 338 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines were administered in the United States from December 14, 2020, through July 19, 2021. During this time, VAERS received 12,313 reports of death (0.0036%) among people who received a COVID-19 vaccine.”

Please note, the death toll more than doubled in a single week. That original July 19 report was then changed to this. The date on the report is still July 19:32

Reports of death after COVID-19 vaccination are rare.More than 334 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines were administered in the United States from December 14, 2020, through July 13, 2021. During this time, VAERS received 6,079 reports of death (0.0018%) among people who received a COVID-19 vaccine.”

At a time when accuracy and transparency is of such critical importance for informed consent, it’s beyond shocking to see the CDC engage in this kind of deception. Parents everywhere need to realize that the CDC and other agencies and their officials are deliberately downplaying and hiding the enormity of the danger their children will face if they take this injection.

I implore you. Please spend ample time looking at all the evidence before you allow your child to participate in this heinous experiment. I understand that the inclination to trust our “gold standard” health agencies is great, but trust must be continuously earned. It’s not a one-time done deal.

At this point, having a skeptical eye and double-checking every claim is of paramount importance. Your child’s health and life may depend on you not being gullible.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2021/07/29/covid-19-in-children.aspx

The Propaganda War (And How to Fight It)

Every totalitarian system in history has used the power of visual propaganda to generate a new “reality,” one that reifies its official ideology, remaking the world in its own paranoid image. New Normal totalitarianism is no exception. For example, take a look at this panel copied from the landing page of The Guardian — one of the global-capitalist ruling classes’ primary propaganda organs — on July 17, 2021 …

pandemic of the unvaccinated

This isn’t just “biased” or “sensationalist” journalism. It is systematic official propaganda, no different than that disseminated by every other totalitarian system throughout history. Here’s the one from the following day …

scientists' plea

Forget about the content of the articles for a moment and just take in the cumulative visual effect. Official propaganda isn’t just information, misinformation, and disinformation.

It is actually less about getting us to believe things than it is about creating an official reality, and imposing it on society by force. When you’re setting out to conjure up a new “reality,” images are extremely powerful tools, just as powerful, if not more powerful, than words. Here are a few more that you might recall …

Again, the goal of this type of propaganda is not simply to deceive or terrorize the public. That is part of it, of course, but the more important part is forcing people to look at these images, over and over, hour after hour, day after day, at home, at work, on the streets, on television, on the Internet, everywhere.

This is how we create “reality.” We represent our beliefs and values to ourselves, and to each other, with images, words, rituals, and other symbols and social behaviors. Essentially, we conjure our “reality” into being like actors rehearsing and performing a play … the more we all believe it, the more convincing it is.

This is also why mandatory masks have been essential to the roll-out of the New Normal ideology. Forcing the masses to wear medical-looking masks in public was a propaganda masterstroke.

Simply put, if you can force people to dress up like they’re going to work in the infectious disease ward of a hospital every day for 17 months … presto! You’ve got yourself a new “reality” … a new, pathologized-totalitarian “reality,” a paranoid-psychotic, cult-like “reality” in which formerly semi-rational people have been reduced to nonsense-babbling lackeys who are afraid to go outside without permission from “the authorities,” and are injecting their children with experimental “vaccines.”

The sheer power of the visual image of those masks, and being forced to repeat the ritual behavior of putting them on, has been nearly irresistible. Yes, I know that you have been resisting. So have I. But we are the minority. Denying the power of what we are up against might make you feel better, but it will get us nowhere, or, in any event, nowhere good.

The fact is, the vast majority of the public — except for people in Sweden, Florida, and assorted other officially non-existent places — have been robotically performing this theatrical ritual, and harassing those who refuse to do so, and thus collectively simulating an “apocalyptic plague.”

The New Normals — i.e., those still wearing masks outdoors, shrieking over meaningless “cases,” bullying everyone to get “vaccinated,” and collaborating with the segregation of the “Unvaccinated” — are not behaving the way they’re behaving because they are stupid.

They are behaving that way because they’re living in a new “reality” that has been created for them over the course of the last 17 months by a massive official propaganda campaign, the most extensive and effective in the history of propaganda.

In other words, to put it bluntly, we are in a propaganda war, and we’re losing. We can’t match the propaganda power of the corporate media and New Normal governments, but that doesn’t mean we can’t fight back. We can, and must, at every opportunity. Recently, readers have been asking me how to do that. So, OK, here are a few simple suggestions.

The vast majority of obedient New Normals are not fanatical totalitarians. They’re scared, and weak, so they are following orders, adjusting their minds to the new official “reality.”

Most of them do not perceive themselves as adherents of a totalitarian system or as segregationists, although that is what they are. They perceive themselves as “responsible” people following sensible “health directives” to “protect” themselves and others from the virus, and its ever-multiplying mutant “variants.” They perceive the “Unvaccinated” as a minority of dangerous, irrational “conspiracy theorist” extremists, who want to kill them and their families.

When we tell them that we simply want our constitutional rights back, and to not be forced into being “vaccinated,” and censored and persecuted for expressing our views, they do not believe us. They think we’re lying. They perceive us as threats, as aggressors, as monsters, as strangers among them, who need to be dealt with … which is exactly how the authorities want them to perceive us.

We need to try to change this perception, not by complying or being “polite” to them. On the contrary, we need to become more confrontational. No, not violent. Confrontational. There is actually a difference, though the “woke” will deny it.

To begin with, we need to call things what they are. The “vaccination pass” system is a segregation system. It is segregationism. Call it what it is. Those cooperating with it are segregationists. They’re not “helping” or “protecting” anybody from anything. They are segregationists, pure and simple. Refer to them as “segregationists.” Don’t let them hide behind their terminology. Confront them with the fact of what they are.

Same goes for the rest of CovidSpeak. COVID “cases,” “deaths,” and “vaccines” get scare quotes. Healthy people are not medical cases. If COVID didn’t kill someone, they are not a COVID death, period. “Vaccines” that do not behave like vaccines, and that are killing and crippling tens of thousands of people, and that have not been adequately tested for safety, and that are being indiscriminatelyforced on everyone, do not get to be called vaccines.

OK, here comes the big idea, which will only work if enough people do it. You probably won’t like it, but what the hell, here goes …

red nazi triangle

This is the red inverted triangle the Nazis used in the concentration camps to designate their political opponents and members of the anti-Nazi resistance. Make one. Make it out of fabric, paper, or whatever material you have at hand. Put a big, black “U” in the center of it to signify “Unvaccinated.” Wear it in public, conspicuously.

When people ask you what it means and why you are wearing it in public, tell them. Encourage them to do the same, assuming they’re not New Normal segregationists, in which case … well, that will be a different conversation, but go ahead and tell them too.

That’s it. That’s the whole big idea. That, and whatever else you are already doing. The triangle is not meant to replace that. It’s just one simple way for people to express their opposition to the totalitarian, pseudo-medical segregation system that is currently being implemented … despite all that other stuff you’ve been doing, and that I have been doing, for 17 months.

All right, I can already feel your disappointment. You thought I was going to propose a frontal assault on Klaus Schwab’s secret castle, or a guerilla naval attack on Bill Gates’ yacht. Cathartic as either of those endeavors might be, they would be (a) futile, and (b) suicidal. Frustrating as it has been for all of us, this is still a battle for hearts and minds. Essentially, it is a War on Reality (or between two “realities” if you prefer). It is being fought in people’s heads, not in the streets.

So, let me try to sell you on this red triangle thing. The point of a visual protest like this is to force the New Normals to confront a different representation of what they, and we, are. A representation that accurately reflects reality.

No, of course we are not in concentration camps — so, please, spare me the irate literalist emails — but we are being segregated, scapegoated, censored, humiliated, and otherwise abused, not for any legitimate public health reasons, but because of our political dissent, because we refuse to mindlessly follow orders and conform to their new official ideology.

The New Normals need to be forced to perceive their beliefs and actions in that context, even if only for a few fleeting moments at the mall, or in the grocery store, or wherever.

Think of it this way … as I explained above, they are basically performing a theatrical event, conjuring up a “pandemic reality” with words, actions, and pseudo-medical stage props. What we need to become is that asshole in the audience who destroys the suspension of disbelief and reminds everyone that they’re sitting in a theater, and not in 15th Century Denmark, by loudly taking a call on his phone right in the middle of Hamlet’s soliloquy.

Seriously, we need to become that asshole as conspicuously as possible, as often as possible, to disrupt the show the New Normals are performing … and to remind them what they are actually doing, and who they are actually doing it to.

Consent Factory's segregation tweet

Look at the white people in the tweet above tormenting that girl who is just trying to go to school like any other student. The New Normals do not want to perceive themselves that way, as a pack of fanatical, hate-drunk segregationists, but that is what they are, because it is what they are doing … but it is not what most of them are by nature.

Yes, some people are congenitally sociopathic, but no one is inherently totalitarian. We are not born fascists or segregationists. We have to be programmed to be that way. That’s what the propaganda is for, not to mention all the other authoritarian conditioning we are subjected to from the time we are children.

Or that’s the gamble, or the leap of faith, behind the inverted red triangle thing. It is a basic non-violent civil-disobedience tactic, which works on people who still have a conscience and haven’t gone full totalitarian yet.

Granted, it might not work this time — we are already at the stage where they are going to imprison restaurant owners for serving the “Unvaccinated” — but it might, and what have we got to lose?

About the Author

C.J. Hopkins is an award-winning American playwright, novelist and political satirist based in Berlin. His plays are published by Bloomsbury Publishing and Broadway Play Publishing, Inc. His dystopian novel, Zone 23, is published by Snoggsworthy, Swaine & Cormorant. Volumes I and II of his Consent Factory Essays are published by Consent Factory Publishing, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Amalgamated Content, Inc. He can be reached at cjhopkins.com or consentfactory.org.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2021/07/29/propaganda-war-and-how-to-fight-it.aspx

Fat Hormone Influences Your Motivation to Eat

motivation to eatA new study helps to explain how leptin, a hormone produced by fat tissue, influences your motivation to eat.

The researchers described for the first time a collection of leptin-responsive neurons in the brain’s lateral hypothalamic area (LHA). Those LHA neurons feed directly into the mesolimbic dopamine system, which controls the rewarding properties assigned to things.

The study therefore adds to growing evidence that leptin doesn’t turn your appetite on and off just by controlling whether you feel hungry or full. It can also make you want food more or less regardless of hunger.
Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/08/29/fat-hormone-influences-your-motivation-to-eat.aspx

Leptin: This Hormone Makes Counting Calories Irrelevant

By Ron Rosedale, M.D.

healthy diet, leptinIt is amazing how the little twists and turns of researchers can have such a profound impact on what we generally come to realize as “scientific truth.” Let me share a recent fascinating example of how this impacted one of the most powerful hormones in your body.

The Ob mouse is a strain of mouse that has a genetic mutation that makes it obese and unhealthy. It has been used for many years as a model of obesity to do research on, though the reason that it was obese had eluded scientists.

This changed when, in 1994, Jeffrey Friedman discovered that this mouse lacked a previously unknown hormone called leptin, and when it was injected with leptin it became thin, vibrant, and very healthy within weeks. This made headlines around the world, “the cure for obesity found” and pharmaceutical companies started tripping over themselves with trillion dollar signs in their eyes to be the first to genetically manufacture leptin on a large-scale.

This did not last long. When people were tested for leptin, it was found that, unlike the Ob mouse, they did not lack leptin; on the contrary almost all overweight and obese people have excess leptin.

These people were leptin resistant and giving extra leptin did little good.

The financial disappointment was extreme and scientists working for pharmaceutical companies said that leptin wasn’t important anymore since they could not find a drug to control it, and therefore the industry couldn’t make money on it. To make big money in medicine one needs a patent and this generally means remedies which are not commonly or easily available — that are not natural.

This illustrates two extremely unfortunate principles in modern medicine; only those therapies that will make lots of money (generally for the pharmaceutical industry or hospitals), ever get pursued and then taught to physicians (since most of medical education after medical school takes place by drug reps), and these therapies, almost by definition, will be unnatural.

This inhibition of extremely important knowledge is not only unfortunate, it is deadly, and is exemplified by how few people, including doctors, know anything about leptin, though I would consider it to be the most important chemical in your body that will determine your health and lifespan.

Two Hormones that are Vital for Optimal Health

Each and every one of us is a combination of lives within lives. We are made up of trillions of individual living cells that each must maintain itself. Even more significantly, the cells must communicate and interact with each other to form a republic of cells that we call our individual self.

Our health and life depends on how accurately instructions are conveyed to our cells so that they can act in harmony. It is the communication among the individual cells that will determine our health and our life.

The communication takes place by hormones. Arguably therefore, the most important molecules in your body that ultimately will decide your health and life are hormones.

Many would say that genes and chromosomes are the most important molecules, however once born your genes pretty much just sit there; hormones tell them what to do. Certainly, the most important message that our cells receive is how and what to do with energy, and therefore life cannot take place without that.

The two most important hormones that deliver messages about energy and metabolism are insulin and leptin.

Metabolism can roughly be defined as the chemistry that turns food into life, and therefore insulin and leptin are critical to health and disease. Both insulin and leptin work together to control the quality of your metabolism (and, to a significant extent, the rate of metabolism).

Insulin works mostly at the individual cell level, telling the vast majority of cells whether to burn or store fat or sugar and whether to utilize that energy for maintenance and repair or reproduction. This is extremely important as we shall see, for on an individual cell level turning on maintenance and repair equates to increased longevity, and turning up cellular reproduction can increase your risk of cancer.

Leptin, on the other hand, controls the energy storage and utilization of the entire republic of cells allowing the body to communicate with the brain about how much energy (fat) the republic has stored, and whether it needs more, or should burn some off, and whether it is an advantageous time nutritionally-speaking for the republic –you– to reproduce or not.

What Exactly is Leptin?

Leptin is a very powerful and influential hormone produced by fat cells that has totally changed the way that science (real science, outside of medicine) looks at fat, nutrition, and metabolism in general.

Prior to leptins discovery, fat was viewed as strictly an ugly energy storage depot that most everyone was trying to get rid of. After it was discovered that fat produced the hormone leptin (and subsequently it was discovered that fat produced other very significant hormones), fat became an endocrine organ like the ovaries, pancreas and pituitary, influencing the rest of the body and, in particular, the brain.

Leptin, as far  as science currently knows, is the most powerful regulator that tells your brain what to do about life’s two main biological goals: eating and reproduction. Your fat, by way of leptin, tells your brain whether you should be hungry, eat and make more fat, whether you should reproduce and make babies, or (partly by controlling insulin) whether to “hunker down” and work overtime to maintain and repair yourself.

I believe I could now make a very convincing and scientifically accurate statement that that rather than your brain being in control of the rest of your body, your brain is, in fact, subservient to your fat — and leptin.

In short, leptin is the way that your fat stores speak to your brain to let your brain know how much energy is available and, very importantly, what to do with it. Therefore, leptin may be “on top of the food chain in metabolic importance and relevance to disease.

How Leptin Regulates Your Weight

It has been known for many years that fat stores are highly regulated. It appeared that when one tried to lose weight the body would try to gain it back. This commonly results in “yo-yo” dieting and in scientific circles one talks about the “set point” of weight. It has long been theorized that there must be a hormone that determines this.

Science points now to leptin as being that hormone.

In our ancestral history, it was advantageous to store some fat to call upon during times of famine. However, it was equally disadvantageous to be too fat. For most of our evolutionary history, it was necessary to run, to obtain prey and perhaps most importantly, to avoid being prey. If a lion was chasing a group of people it would most likely catch and eliminate from the gene pool the slowest runner and the one who could not make it up the tree — the fattest one.

Thus, fat storage had to be highly regulated and this is done, as is any regulation, through hormones, the most significant being leptin.

If a person is getting too fat, the extra fat produces more leptin which is supposed to tell the brain that there is too much fat stored, more should not be stored, and the excess should be burned.

Signals are therefore sent to an area of the brain in the hypothalamus (the arcuate nucleus) to stop being hungry, to stop eating, to stop storing fat and to start burning some extra fat off.

Controlling hunger is a major (though not the only) way that leptin controls energy storage. Hunger is a very powerful, ancient, and deep-seated drive that, if stimulated long enough, will make you eat and store more energy. Asking somebody to not eat, to voluntarily restrict calories even though they are hungry, is asking the near impossible. The only way to eat less in the long-term is to not be hungry, and the only way to do this is to control the hormones that regulate hunger, the primary one being leptin.

How Leptin Resistance Leads to Disease

More recently, it has been found that leptin not only changes brain chemistry, but can also rewire the very important areas of the brain that control hunger and metabolism. I’m not aware of any other chemical in the body that has been shown to accomplish this “mind bending” event.

This has really caught the attention of the scientific community. Further studies have now shown that leptin, or more correctly the inability of the body to properly hear leptins signals, in other words leptin resistance, plays significant if not primary roles in heart disease, obesity, diabetes, osteoporosis, autoimmune diseases, reproductive disorders, and perhaps the rate of aging itself.

It helps to control the brain areas that regulate thyroid levels and the sympathetic nervous system which also has huge impacts on blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, osteoporosis and aging. Leptin’s stimulatory effect on the sympathetic nervous system also helps determine the adrenal stress response including cortisol levels.

Leptin May Be Even More Critical Than Insulin

The importance of insulin in health and disease is becoming well-known. Aside from its obvious role in diabetes, it plays a very significant role in hypertension, cardiovascular disease, and cancer.

I was one of the first to speak publicly to doctors about insulin’s critical role in health well over a decade ago (see the transcribed talk Insulin and its Metabolic Effects) and I am even more convinced now.

However leptin may even supersede insulin in importance, for new research is revealing that in the long run glucose and therefore insulin levels may be largely determined by leptin.

It had been previously believed that the insulin sensitivity of muscle and fat tissues were the most important factor in determining whether one would become diabetic or not. Elegant new studies are showing that the brain and liver are most important in regulating a person’s blood sugar levels especially in type 2 or insulin resistant diabetes.

It should be noted again that leptin plays a vital role in regulating your brains hypothalamic activity which in turn regulates much of a person’s autonomic functions; those functions that you don’t necessarily think about but which determines much of your life (and health) such as body temperature, heart rate, hunger, the stress response, fat burning or storage, reproductive behavior, and newly discovered roles in bone growth and blood sugar levels.

Another very recent study reveals leptin’s importance in directly regulating how much sugar that the liver manufactures via gluconeogenesis.

Many chronic diseases are now linked to excess inflammation such as heart disease and diabetes. High leptin levels are very pro-inflammatory, and leptin also helps to mediate the manufacture of other very potent inflammatory chemicals from fat cells that also play a significant role in the progression of heart disease and diabetes. It has long been known that obesity greatly increased risk for many chronic diseases including heart disease and diabetes, but no one really knew why.

Leptin appears to be the missing link.

Could Leptin Also Affect  How Fast You Age?

Leptin will not only determine how much fat you have, but also where that fat is put. When you are leptin resistant you put that fat mostly in your belly, your viscera, causing the so-called “apple shape” that is linked to much disease. Some of that fat permeates the liver, impeding the liver’s ability to listen to insulin, and further hastening diabetes.

 

Leptin plays a far more important role in your health than, for instance, cholesterol, yet how many doctors measure leptin levels in their patients, know their own level, even know that it can be easily measured, or even what it would mean?

Leptin appears to play a significant role in obesity, heart disease, osteoporosis, autoimmune diseases, inflammatory diseases and cancer. These are the so-called chronic diseases of aging.

Could it perhaps affect the rate of aging itself?

The Biology of Aging

Scientists who study the biology of aging are beginning to look at that question. There are two endeavors, two drives that life has been programmed, since its inception, to succeed at and to succumb to. These are to eat and to reproduce.

If every one of our ancestors had not succeeded in eating and reproducing we would not be here, and this paper would be moot. All of your morphological characteristics from your hair to your toenails are designed to help you succeed at those two activities. That is what nature wants us to do. Nature’s purpose is not necessarily to have you live a long and healthy life, but to perpetuate the instructions, the genes that tell how to perpetuate life.

Even so-called “paleolithic” diets, though undoubtedly far better than what is generally eaten today, were not necessarily designed by nature to help us live a long and healthy life but, at best, to maximize reproduction. Nature appears to not care much about what happens to us after we have had a sufficient chance to reproduce. That is why we die.

But there are clues as to how to live a long and healthy life. And that brings us once again to fat–and leptin.

It takes energy to make babies; lots of it. Energy was and always will be a coveted commodity. Nature, and evolution, hates wasting it. It makes no sense to try and make babies when it appears that there’s not enough energy available to successfully accomplish that goal.

Instead, it seems that virtually all living forms can switch gears and direct energy away from reproduction and towards mechanism that will allow it to “hunker down” for the long haul and thus be able to reproduce at a future more nutritionally opportune time. In other words nature will then let you live longer to accomplish its primary directive of reproduction.

It does this by up regulating maintenance and repair genes that increase production of intracellular antioxidant systems, heat shock proteins (that help maintain protein shape), and DNA repair enzymes. This is what happens when you restrict calories (without starvation) in animals, and that has been shown convincingly for 70 years to greatly extend the life span of many dozens of species. Thus, there is a powerful link between reproduction, energy stores, and longevity.

Genetic studies in simple organisms have shown that that link is at least partially mediated by insulin (which in simple organisms also functions as a growth hormone), and that when insulin signals are kept low, indicating scarce energy availability, maximal lifespan can be extended— a lot; several hundred percent in worms and flies.

Glucose is an ancient fuel used even before there was oxygen in the atmosphere, for life can burn glucose without oxygen; it is an anaerobic fuel. The use of fat as fuel came later, after life in the form of plants soaked the earth in oxygen, for you cannot burn fat without oxygen.

The primary source of energy stores in people by far is fat, as many unfortunately are all too aware of. The primary signal that indicates how much fat is stored is leptin, and it is also leptin that allows for reproduction, or not.

It has long been known that women with very little body fat, such as marathon runners, stop ovulating. There is not enough leptin being produced to permit it. Paradoxically, the first pharmaceutical use of leptin was recently approved to give to skinny women to allow them to reproduce.

Leptin’s Role in Improving Your Metabolism

Leptin also is instrumental in regulating body temperature, partly by controlling the rate of metabolism via its regulation of the thyroid.

 

Metabolic rate and temperature has long been connected with longevity. Almost all mechanisms that extend lifespan in many different organisms result in lower temperature. Flowers are refrigerated at the florist to extend their lifespan. Restricting calories in animals also results in lower temperature, reduced thyroid levels, and longer life.

 

It should be noted that reduced thyroid levels in this case are not synonymous with hypothyroidism. Here, the body is choosing to lower thyroid hormones because the increased efficiency of energy use and hormonal signaling (including perhaps thyroid) is allowing this to happen.

Anything will dissolve faster in hot water than cold water. Extra heat will dissolve, disrupt and disorganize. This is not what I try to do to make someone healthy. It is commonly advised to “increase metabolism” and increase “thermogenesis” for health and weight loss.

Yet how many of you would put a brand of gasoline in your car that advertised that it would make your engine run hotter? What would that do to the life of your car? It is not an increase in metabolism that I am after; it is improved metabolic quality.

That will be determined at the quality of your leptin signaling.

If it is poor, if you are insulin and leptin resistant, your metabolism is unhealthy and high in what I call “metabolic friction”. If you then increase its rate you will likely accelerate your demise. To increase the quality of your metabolism you must be able to properly listen to insulin and especially to leptin.

If your fasting blood serum level of leptin is elevated you are likely leptin resistant and you will not be healthy unless you correct it.

How Do You Become Leptin Resistant?

This is the subject of much research. I believe people become leptin-resistant by the same general mechanism that people become insulin-resistant; by overexposure to high levels of the hormone.

High blood glucose levels cause repeated surges in insulin, and this causes one’s cells to become “insulin-resistant which leads to further high levels of insulin and diabetes. It is much the same as being in a smelly room for a period of time. Soon, you stop being able to smell it, because the signal no longer gets through.

I believe the same happens with leptin. It has been shown that as sugar gets metabolized in fat cells, fat releases surges in leptin, and I believe that those surges result in leptin-resistance just as it results in insulin-resistance.

The only known way to reestablish proper leptin (and insulin) signaling is to prevent those surges, and the only known way to do that is via diet and supplements.

As such, these can have a more profound effect on your health than any other known modality of medical treatment.

When leptin signaling is restored, your brain can finally hear the message that perhaps should have been delivered decades ago; high leptin levels can now scream to your brain that you have too much fat and that you better start burning some off for your life is in danger.

Your brain will finally allow you access into your pantry that you have been storing your fat in. Your cells will be fed the food from that fat and they will be satisfied. They will not know whether that food came from your belly fat or from your mouth; nor will they care. They will be receiving energy that they need and will not have to ask for more. You will not be hungry.

This also makes counting calories irrelevant, for the calories that you put into your mouth today are not necessarily what your cells will be eating; that will be determined primarily by leptin. Whether or not you put food into your mouth, your cells will be eating, and if they cannot eat fat they must eat sugar.

Since little sugar is stored, that sugar will be had by making you crave it, or by turning the protein in your muscle and bone into sugar. This contributes in a major way to weakness and osteoporosis. Whether or not this lean tissue wasting happens is determined by your capacity, or incapacity, to burn fat, and that is determined by your ability to listen to leptin.

A strategic diet that emphasizes good fats and avoids blood sugar spikes coupled with targeted supplements (as recommended in my Rosedale Diet and Dr. Mercola’s Take Control of Your Health), will enhance insulin and leptin sensitivity so that you can once again hear their music, allowing your life to be the symphony it was meant to be.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/06/20/this-hormone-makes-counting-calories-irrelevant.aspx

Environmental Toxins Causing Early Puberty in Both Boys and Girls

By Dr. Mercola

Reaching puberty is a rite of passage that we’ve all been through, but children are now reaching it earlier than ever before, and while precocious puberty in girls has received most of the attention, we now know the trend applies to boys as well.

In the 19th century, the onset of menstruation in girls occurred around the age of 15. Now the average age of the first period is around 12. Some girls develop breasts as early as age seven1 .

According to a recent study in the journal Pediatrics2, boys are now beginning sexual development anywhere from six months to two years earlier than the medically accepted standard based on previous studies.

African-American boys were found to hit the onset of puberty the soonest, starting around the age of nine. Caucasian and Hispanic boys begin developing around the age of 10.

“The causes and public health implications of this apparent shift in US boys to a lower age of onset for the development of secondary sexual characteristics in US boys needs further exploration,” the authors write.

Indeed, while some may shrug off the trend of earlier maturation, it’s actually pretty significant, as it can affect both physical and psychological health in a number of ways, including raising the future risk for hormone-related cancers. Girls who enter puberty earlier are at an increased risk of breast cancer, for example, due to the early rise in estrogen.

The trend also raises serious questions about environmental factors spurring this development. Lead researcher Marcia Herman-Giddens told CNN Health3:

“The changes are too fast. Genetics take maybe hundreds, thousands of years. You have to look at something in the environment. That would include everything from (a lack of) exercise to junk food to TV to chemicals.”

Environmental Chemicals a Likely Factor

Scientists have brought forth a number of potential explanations for the rising rates of early puberty, but one that deserves special attention is environmental chemicals, and particularly xeno-estrogens, i.e. estrogen-mimicking chemicals. These compounds behave like steroid hormones and can alter the timing of puberty, and affect disease risk throughout life.

In adults, xeno-estrogens have been linked to decreased sperm quality, stimulation of mammary gland development in men, disrupted reproductive cycles and ovarian dysfunction, obesity, cancer and heart disease, among numerous other health problems.

We’re surrounded by hormone-disrupting chemicals these days, many of which are plasticizers. Bisphenol A (BPA) for example, is an industrial petrochemical that acts as a synthetic estrogen, and can be found plastics and tin can linings, in dental sealants, and on cash-register receipts. Three years ago, laboratory tests commissioned by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) detected BPA in the umbilical cord blood of 90 percent of newborn infants tested — along with more than 230 other chemicals!

In September 2010, Canada declared BPA a toxic substance, but to date no other country has followed suit, although BPA has been banned in baby bottles in Canada, Europe and the United States. Frustratingly, the US FDA has denied the request to ban BPA, however many American companies have voluntarily removed the chemical from their products, in response to consumer demand. So, if you check around, you can find a lot of BPA-free products.

However, buyer beware, as it recently came to light that some companies are simply replacing the offending BPA with another less known but equally toxic chemical called bisphenol-S (BPS)! Not only does BPS appear to have similar hormone-mimicking characteristics to BPA, but research suggests it is actually significantly less biodegradable, and more heat-stable and photo-resistant, than BPA.

10 Top Offenders that Can Disrupt Your Hormones

Beside BPA and BPS, other top offenders you should be aware of, and watch out for, include:

Phthalates, a group of industrial chemicals used to make plastics like polyvinyl chloride (PVC) more flexible and resilient. They’re also one of the most pervasive of the endocrine disrupters, found in everything from processed food packaging and shower curtains to detergents, toys and beauty products like nail polish, hair spray, shampoo, deodorants, and fragrances. Exposure to phthalates can lead to incomplete testicular descent in fetuses, reduced sperm counts, testicular atrophy or structural abnormality and inflammation in newborns. Fluoride, which is added to the majority of public water supplies in the United States. Research has shown that animals treated with fluoridehad lower levels of circulating melatonin, as reflected by reduced levels of melatonin metabolites in the animals’ urine. This reduced level of circulating melatonin was accompanied — as might be expected — by an earlier onset of puberty in the fluoride-treated female animals.
Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), a likely carcinogen found in grease- and water-resistant coatings and non-stick cookware. Methoxychlor and Vinclozin, an insecticide and a fungicide respectively, have been found to cause changes to male mice born for as many as four subsequent generations after the initial exposure.
Nonylphenol ethoxylates (NPEs). Known to be potent endocrine disrupters, these chemicals affect gene expression by turning on or off certain genes, and interfere with the way your glandular system works. Bovine growth hormones (rBGH) commonly added to commercial dairy have been implicated as a contributor to premature adolescence.
MSG, a food additive that’s been linked to reduced fertility. Non-fermented soy products, which are loaded with hormone-like substances.
DDE (a breakdown product of the pesticide DDT) PCBs

New Concern: Metalloestrogens

Recent research has also confirmed the existence of a previously unknown class of cancer-causing estrogen-mimicking compounds: “metalloestrogens.” The following metals, which are added to thousands of consumer products, including vaccines, have been identified as being capable of binding to cellular estrogen receptors and then mimicking the actions of physiological estrogens:4

Aluminum Antimony Arsenite Barium Cadmium Chromium Cobalt
Copper Lead Mercury Nickel Selenite Tin Vanadate

Tips to Reduce Exposure to Hormone-Disrupting Substances

While young girls and boys may show obvious signs of exposure to hormone-disrupting substances via early puberty, other signals are more insidious and may not show up until a disease is already present. You can cut back on your family’s exposure to these dangerous chemicals by following these 12 guidelines. Pregnant women and women who may become pregnant should pay particular attention to reducing their exposure as much as possible to protect the health of their unborn baby:

  1. Eat whole, preferably organic, produce and free-range, organic meats to reduce your exposure to added hormones, pesticides and fertilizers. Also avoid milk and other dairy products that contain the genetically engineered recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH or rBST)
  2. Eat mostly raw, fresh foods. Processed, prepackaged foods (of all kinds) are a major source of soy and chemicals such as BPA and phthalates.
  3. Store your food and beverages in glass rather than plastic, and avoid using plastic wrap and canned foods (which are often lined with BPA-containing liners).
  4. Use glass baby bottles and BPA-free sippy cups for your little ones.
  5. Make sure your baby’s toys are BPA-free, such as pacifiers, teething rings and anything your child may be prone to suck on.
  6. Only use natural cleaning products in your home to avoid phthalates.
  7. Switch over to natural brands of toiletries such as shampoo, toothpaste, antiperspirants and cosmetics. The Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep Database5 is a great resource for finding personal care products that are free of phthalates, parabens and other potentially dangerous chemicals.
  8. Avoid using artificial air fresheners, dryer sheets, fabric softeners or other synthetic fragrances.
  9. Replace your non-stick pots and pans with ceramic or glass cookware.
  10. When redoing your home, look for “green,” toxin-free alternatives in lieu of regular paint and vinyl floor coverings.
  11. Replace your vinyl shower curtain with one made of fabric.
  12. Avoid non-fermented soy, especially if you’re pregnant. Also, never use soy-based infant formula.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/12/19/precocious-puberty.aspx

Puberty Before Age 10: A New ‘Normal’?

By Dr. Mercola

Reaching puberty is a rite of passage that we’ve all been through, but children nowadays are reaching it earlier than ever before — a trend that has both health experts and parents alarmed.

Precocious puberty, which is the appearance of secondary sex characteristics like pubic hair or breast growth before age 8, or the onset of menarche before age 9, impacts at least 1 in 5,000 U.S. children, and the rate is on the rise.1

Even in the last three decades, children (particularly girls) are maturing at younger and younger ages (precocious puberty is 10 times more common in girls than in boys).

Puberty, Once the Norm at Age 15, Now Occurring in 7-, 8- and 9-Year-Olds

In the 19th century the onset of menstruation occurred around the age of 15. Now the average age of the first period, or menarche, is around 12. The time during and before puberty is one of rapid development and change, which is why even months matter when it comes to first menstruation. Before menstruation, girls will show beginning signs of development, such as breast “budding” and growth of pubic hair.

These signs are now becoming unsettlingly common among 7-, 8- and 9-year-old girls, to the extent that many health care providers, rather than labeling these children with a diagnosis that something is wrong, have simply changed the definition of what’s normal… but is it really “normal” for girls to mature at such a young age?

There are more questions than answers in the case of precocious puberty, but what is certain is that girls are developing earlier than they have even 10, 20 or 30 years ago.

One study in the journal Pediatrics revealed that by age 7, 10 percent of white girls, 23 percent of black girls, 15 percent of Hispanic girls and 2 percent of Asian girls had started developing breasts, with researchers noting:2

“The proportion of girls who had breast development at ages 7 and 8 years, particularly among white girls, is greater than that reported from studies of girls who were born 10 to 30 years earlier.”

Early puberty can set the stage for emotional and behavioral problems, and is linked to lower self-esteem, depression, eating disorders, alcohol use, earlier loss of virginity, more sexual partners and increased risk of sexually transmitted diseases. There is also evidence that suggests these girls are at increased risk of diabetes, heart disease and other cardiovascular diseases, as well as cancer, later in life.

Environmental Chemicals a Likely Factor

Scientists have brought forth a number of potential explanations for the rising rates of early puberty, but one that deserves special attention is environmental chemicals, and particularly estrogen-mimicking, “gender-bending” chemicals that easily leach out of the products that contain them, contaminating everything they touch, including food and beverages.

As the featured New York Times article reported:

” …animal studies show that the exposure to some environmental chemicals can cause bodies to mature early. Of particular concern are endocrine-disrupters, like “xeno-estrogens” or estrogen mimics. These compounds behave like steroid hormones and can alter puberty timing.

For obvious ethical reasons, scientists cannot perform controlled studies proving the direct impact of these chemicals on children, so researchers instead look for so-called “natural experiments,” one of which occurred in 1973 in Michigan, when cattle were accidentally fed grain contaminated with an estrogen-mimicking chemical, the flame retardant PBB.

The daughters born to the pregnant women who ate the PBB-laced meat and drank the PBB-laced milk started menstruating significantly earlier than their peers.”

This is an extreme case, but the truth is we are all part of a “secret experiment” of sorts, because hormone-disrupting chemicals are all around us. Bisphenol A (BPA), an industrial petrochemical that acts as a synthetic estrogen, is found in our plastics and our tin can linings, in dental sealants and on cash-register receipts. Laboratory tests commissioned by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) detected BPA in the umbilical cord blood of 90 percent of newborn infants tested — along with more than 230 other chemicals. As written in the New York Times:

“One concern, among parents and researchers, is the effect of simultaneous exposures to many estrogen-mimics, including the compound BPA, which is ubiquitous.”

No one knows what happens when a developing fetus or young child is exposed to hundreds of chemicals, many of which mimic your body’s natural hormones and can trigger major changes in your body even as an adult, let along during the most rapid and vulnerable periods of development (in utero and as a young child).

BPA is, unfortunately, but one example. Others include phthalates, a group of industrial chemicals used to make plastics like polyvinyl chloride (PVC) more flexible and resilient. They’re also one of the most pervasive of the endocrine disrupters, found in everything from processed food packaging and shower curtains to detergents, toys and beauty products like nail polish, hair spray, shampoo, deodorants, and fragrances.

Other environmental chemicals like PCBs and DDE (a breakdown product of the pesticide DDT) may also be associated with early sexual development in girls. Both DDE and PCBs are known to mimic, or interfere with, sex hormones.

Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), found in non-stick cookware, also falls into this dangerous category, as does fluoride, which is added to the majority of public water supplies in the United States. Research showed that animals treated with fluoride had lower levels of circulating melatonin, as reflected by reduced levels of melatonin metabolites in the animals’ urine. This reduced level of circulating melatonin was accompanied — as might be expected — by an earlier onset of puberty in the fluoride-treated female animals.

These Chemicals Also Increase Your Risk of Cancer and Heart Disease

If a chemical is capable of influencing the rate of your reproductive development, it stands to reason that it would be capable of influencing other hormone-sensitive growth processes as well, and this is indeed the case.

For instance, new research has detected the presence of paraben esters in 99 percent of breast cancer tissues sampled.3 Parabens are chemicals with estrogen-like properties, and estrogen is one of the hormones involved in not only puberty but also the development of breast cancer. They are widely used in household products such as:

Deodorants and antiperspirants Shampoos and conditioners Shaving gel Toothpaste
Lotions and sunscreens Make-up / cosmetics Pharmaceutical drugs Food additives

Recent research has also confirmed the existence of a previously unknown class of cancer-causing estrogen-mimicking compounds: metals. Yes, a broad range of metals have been shown to act as “metalloestrogens” with the potential to add to the estrogenic burden of the human body, thereby increasing the risk of breast cancer and also possibly early puberty. The following metals, which are added to thousands of consumer products, including vaccines, have been identified as being capable of binding to cellular estrogen receptors and then mimicking the actions of physiological estrogens:4

Aluminum Antimony Arsenite Barium Cadmium Chromium Cobalt
Copper Lead Mercury Nickel Selenite Tin Vanadate

Data from a long-running British health survey, meanwhile, has shown that if you have high levels of the chemical BPA in your urine, you may be at an increased risk of heart disease. Some of the greatest concern surrounds early-life, in utero exposure to BPA, which can lead to chromosomal errors in your developing fetus, causing spontaneous miscarriages and genetic damage. But evidence is also very strong showing these chemicals are influencing adults and children, too, and leading to decreased sperm quality, early puberty, stimulation of mammary gland development, disrupted reproductive cycles and ovarian dysfunction, obesity, cancer and heart disease, among numerous other health problems.

Avoiding Hormone-Disrupting Substances is Crucial for Children and Adults Alike

While young girls may show obvious signs of exposure to hormone-disrupting substances via early puberty, other signals are more insidious and may not show up until a disease is already present. Here are 11 measures you can implement right away to help protect yourself and your children from common toxic substances that could cause precocious puberty and other long-term health problems:

  1. As much as possible, buy and eat organic produce and free-range, organic meats to reduce your exposure to added hormones, pesticides and fertilizers. Also avoid milk and other dairy products that contain the genetically engineered recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH or rBST)
  2. Eat mostly raw, fresh foods. Processed, prepackaged foods (of all kinds) are a major source of soy and chemicals such as BPA and phthalates.
  3. Store your food and beverages in glass rather than plastic, and avoid using plastic wrap and canned foods (which are often lined with BPA-containing liners).
  4. Use glass baby bottles and BPA-free sippy cups for your little ones.
  5. Make sure your baby’s toys are BPA-free, such as pacifiers, teething rings and anything your child may be prone to suck on.
  6. Only use natural cleaning products in your home to avoid phthalates.
  7. Switch over to natural brands of toiletries such as shampoo, toothpaste, antiperspirants and cosmetics. The Environmental Working Group has a great safety guide to help you find personal care products that are free of phthalates, parabens and other potentially dangerous chemicals.
  8. Avoid using artificial air fresheners, dryer sheets, fabric softeners or other synthetic fragrances, many of which can also disrupt your hormone balance.
  9. Replace your non-stick pots and pans with ceramic or glass cookware.
  10. When redoing your home, look for “green,” toxin-free alternatives in lieu of regular paint and vinyl floor coverings.
  11. Replace your vinyl shower curtain with one made of fabric.
  12. Avoid non-fermented soy, especially if you’re pregnant and in infant formula.

Theo Colburn’s book Our Stolen Future is a great source for further investigation as it identifies the numerous ways in which environmental pollutants are disrupting human reproductive patterns. I believe it is one of the best resources on this topic and highly recommend it.

Vitamin D Also Linked to Early Puberty

It has been suggested that girls who live closer to the equator start puberty at a later age than girls who live in Northern regions. Since this indicates a potential connection with sun exposure, researchers decided to investigate whether vitamin D was, in fact, related. Upon measuring vitamin D levels in 242 girls aged 5-12, researchers from the University of Michigan School of Public Health found that those who were deficient were twice as likely to start menstruation during the study period as those with higher levels.5

Specifically, among the vitamin-D-deficient girls, 57 percent started their period during the study, compared to 23 percent with adequate vitamin D. However, researchers defined adequate vitamin D as ≥ 30 ng/mL, which is actually still a deficiency state! For optimal health, vitamin D levels should be a minimum of 50 ng/mL, which means the number of vitamin-D-deficient girls with early puberty was probably much higher than the study reported.

The earlier you enter puberty, the longer you’re exposed to elevated levels of the female hormone estrogen, which is a risk factor for certain cancers such as breast cancer. This has been the primary “link” between early puberty and cancer that has been explored, but it’s important to understand that vitamin D deficiency is also a major risk factor for cancer, heart disease and many other diseases. So it could be that some of the increased risks that come from early puberty are linked to low vitamin D levels.

What You Should Know About Obesity, Stress and Exercise

Obesity (which exposes girls to more estrogen because estrogen is both stored and produced in fat tissue) is another likely factor in early puberty. The New York Times reported:

“As Robert Lustig, a professor of clinical pediatrics at the University of California, San Francisco’s Benioff Children’s Hospital, explains, fatter girls have higher levels of the hormone leptin, which can lead to early puberty, which leads to higher estrogen levels, which leads to greater insulin resistance, causing girls to have yet more fat tissue, more leptin and more estrogen, the cycle feeding on itself, until their bodies physically mature.”

As for stress, this, too, has been linked to early puberty, with girls whose parents divorced when they were between 3- and 8-years-old significantly more likely to experience precocious puberty. “Evolutionary psychology offers a theory,” the New York Times reports. “A stressful childhood inclines a body toward early reproduction; if life is hard, best to mature young. But such theories are tough to prove.” Interestingly, in addition to avoiding environmental chemicals, obesity and stress, and optimizing your vitamin D, regular exercise appears to be one of the best known ways to help prevent early puberty.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/04/16/early-precocious-puberty.aspx

The Terrible Truth About Plastic You Never Knew

plasticAs plastic ages or is exposed to heat or stress, it can release trace amounts of some of its ingredients. Of particular concern are bisphenol-a (BPA), used to strengthen some plastics, and phthalates, used to soften others.

These chemicals are used in hundreds of household items; BPA is in everything from baby bottles to can linings, while phthalates are found in children‘s toys as well as vinyl shower curtains. They enter your body through the food, water and bits of dust you consume, or are simply absorbed through your skin.

BPA and phthalates are endocrine disrupters, which mimic hormones. Estrogen and other hormones in relatively tiny amounts can cause vast changes, so researchers worry that BPA and phthalates could do the same, especially in young children.

To cut down on your exposure, avoid plastic bottles and toys labeled with the numbers 3 or 7, which often contain BPA or phthalates, and canned foods, especially those with acidic contents like tomatoes. You should also avoid heating plastic in microwaves.
Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2008/07/31/the-terrible-truth-about-plastic-you-never-knew.aspx

The Secret to Raising Smart Kids

More than three decades of scientific research suggests that repeatedly telling children that they are especially smart or talented leaves them vulnerable to failure, and fearful of challenges.

Children raised this way develop an implicit belief that intelligence is innate and fixed, making striving to learn seem less important than seeming smart; challenges, mistakes, and effort become threats to their ego rather than opportunities to improve.

However, teaching children to have a “growth mind-set,” which encourages effort rather than on intelligence or talent, helps make them into high achievers in school and in life. This results in “mastery-oriented” children who tend to think that intelligence is malleable and can be developed through education and hard work.

This can be done by telling stories about achievements that result from hard work. Talking about math geniuses who were born that way puts students in a fixed mind-set, but descriptions of great mathematicians who developed amazing skills over time creates a growth mind-set.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2007/12/22/the-secret-to-raising-smart-kids.aspx

80 Percent of Schools are Applying Pesticides

More than 80 percent of schools in America use toxic pesticides as a preventative measure, whether it‘s needed or not.

Mark Lame, an entomologist and professor at Indiana University‘s School of Public and Environmental Affairs, believes this is an entirely unnecessary practice that carries more risks than benefits to students and faculty.

The most widely used pesticides are, in fact, nerve poisons. They cause uncontrolled nerve firing, and disrupt the delicate hormone systems.

The link between pesticide exposure and health problems in children is already well established. Research has connected these endocrine-disrupting pesticides to health problems such as ADHD, autism, and infertility — all of which are on the rise.

Professor Lame says pest problems are better managed through an integrated approach — by preventing the conditions that attract pests into school facilities in the first place.

Lame serves as a consultant for schools around the country, helping them reduce the toxic load by implementing his Integrated Pest Management (IPM) process.

Science Daily July 21, 2007


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2007/08/16/80-percent-of-schools-are-applying-pesticides.aspx

NAD+ Helps Restore Age-Related Muscle Deterioration

The tendency is to lose muscle as you age, a condition known as sarcopenia. If you don’t do anything to stop it you can expect to lose about 15% of your muscle mass between your 30s and your 80s.1 An estimated 10% to 25% of seniors under the age of 70 have sarcopenia and as many as half those over the age of 80 are impaired with it.2

Enforced bedrest, due to hospitalization, for example, can also have a dramatic impact on your muscle mass, even if you’re younger. According to a 2015 review3 in Extreme Physiology & Medicine, you can lose 5.2% of your muscle mass in the first two weeks of bedrest. By Day 23, you can have lost up to 10% of your quadriceps muscle mass.

Not only are strong muscles a requirement for mobility, balance and the ability to live independently, but having reserve muscle mass will also increase your chances of survival4 when sick or hospitalized. Since muscle is lost far more easily and quicker than it’s built, finding ways to continuously promote and maintain your muscle mass is of utmost importance.

The Crucial Role of NAD+

As reported by Science Daily,5 scientists recently discovered that Alzheimer’s-like protein aggregates underlie the muscle deterioration commonly seen in aging, and that nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) is essential for combating this condition.

Their study,6 published in the journal Cell Reports, showed that protein aggregates (amyloid) could be blocked by boosting the levels of NAD+, a biomolecule that is also essential for maintaining mitochondrial function.

Higher levels of NAD+ were found to turn on the defense systems of the mitochondria and restore muscle function. Aggregated proteins have long been thought to be a contributor to brain aging, and this study proves aggregated proteins also contribute to muscle aging.

“The most prominent component of these protein aggregates is beta-amyloid, just like in the amyloid plaques in the brains of patients with Alzheimer’s disease,” said Johan Auwerx at EPFL’s School of Life Sciences. “These abnormal proteotoxic aggregates could serve as novel biomarkers for the aging process, beyond the brain and muscle.”

The study points out that NAD+ homeostasis is required to maintain proteostasis, i.e., the regulation of protein creation, folding, trafficking and degradation. It turns out that boosting NAD+ in later life will reduce amyloidosis (the buildup of amyloid) and mitochondrial dysfunction.

The importance of NAD+ for healthy muscle function is also reviewed in “Sarcopenia and Muscle Aging: A Brief Overview,”7 published in the journal Endocrinology and Metabolism. The paper highlights:

“… recent findings that describe key pathophysiological phenotypes of this condition, including alterations in muscle fiber types, mitochondrial function, nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) metabolism, myokines, and gut microbiota, in aged muscle compared to young muscle or healthy aged muscle.”

As indicated by the Cell Report study, this Endocrinology and Metabolism paper highlights the connection between sarcopenia and mitochondrial dysfunction in both skeletal muscle and motor neurons.

People with sarcopenia have been found to have both reduced mitochondrial oxidative capacity and inhibited NAD+ biosynthesis, and several studies have proposed that mitochondrial dysfunction in your neurons actually drive the development of sarcopenia.8

What Is NAD+?

NAD+ is a substrate for a number of important enzymes, including poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) and sirtuin 1 (SIRT1), which is known as a classic longevity protein. NAD+ is also essential in metabolic processes such as creating ATP in your mitochondria. It accepts and donates electrons and is used in oxidation-reduction reactions in the mitochondrial electron transport chain.

Interestingly, what scientists have observed is that NAD+ levels decline in most tissues over time, and is associated with aging in general and is therefore thought to play an important role in many age-related diseases.

According to the Endocrinology and Metabolism paper,9 researchers have shown that when the NAD+ salvage pathways in muscle are impaired, mitochondrial dysfunction and decreased muscle mass ensues.

NAD+ boosting molecules such as nicotinamide riboside (NR), nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN), nicotinamide (a form of vitamin B3 or niacin) and nicotinic acid (niacin) have all been shown to protect against age-related muscle disease.

How to Boost NAD+

Of those four, NMN is my personal favorite as it activates the NAD+ salvage pathway. As explained by Siim Land in a recent interview, featured in “Simple Strategies That Will Improve Your Immunity,” which also reviews the importance of NAD+ in COVID-19:

“A lot of the NAD that your body produces is recycled through the salvage pathway. Very little (less than 1%) of it is going to come from food, especially tryptophan or niacin. The easiest way to prevent losing your NAD as you get older or as you get immunocompromised is to promote the salvage pathway.”

I’ve previously recommended the use of NR over NMN but have since changed my stance. NR used to be considered superior because no NMN transporter — required to get it into cells — had been detected. We now know there is such a transporter, which gives NMN the advantage as it’s also a more direct NAD+ precursor.

NAD salvage pathway

Most of the NAD+ precursor research is done with NR and that used to be my primary choice. However, as you can see from the image above, NMN converts to NAD+ whereas NR must first be converted into NMN before it can be converted into NAD+,10 so it makes more sense to use NMN for NAD+ augmentation.

The image above also shows how niacin (NA) also finds its way to become NAD+. Niacin is also a useful supplement to use in increasing NAD+ levels. You just need to limit the dose to about 25 mg, which most is a dose low enough not to cause any flushing. Higher doses are not likely as effective as NMN and exercise in producing NAD+.

The NMN transporter was discovered11,12 shortly before my interview with David Sinclair, Ph.D., a professor of genetics and co-director of the Paul F. Glenn Center for the Biology of Aging at Harvard Medical School. Interestingly, NMN is also Sinclair’s favorite NAD+ precursor.

Sinclair is generally acknowledged for bringing the importance of NAD+ to the world with his experiments at MIT in the late ‘90s which connected NAD+ to sirtuin activation. We discuss these issues in “The Revolutionary Science of Aging and Longevity,” the interview from which is embedded above for your convenience.

I believe one of the most effective ways of boosting your NAD+ level is to use NMN in suppository form, as this allows you to avoid most of the methylation of the supplement. Other alternatives include subcutaneous or intranasal administration, all of which are more effective than oral supplements.

Unfortunately, NMN is not sold in suppository form, so you would need to get silicone candy molds and use coconut oil to serve as binder for the NMN. The suppositories would need to be refrigerated as coconut oil tends to melt at 75 degrees Fahrenheit. Additionally, NMN is quite perishable, which is another reason to refrigerate it.

As for the other NAD+ boosters, I do not recommend using high-dose niacinamide because in high doses it inhibits Sirt1, an important longevity protein. As mentioned above, low-dose niacin (vitamin B3) of 25 mg can be used.

Low doses of niacin, along with NMN in suppository form — both of which are precursors to NAD+ — are typically sufficient. As an added boon, raising your NAD+ also appears protective against severe COVID-19, as detailed in “Is Niacin a Missing Piece of the COVID Puzzle?” There are also NAD+ supplements available, but their price tags can be prohibitive.

Lifestyle Strategies Can Address Underlying Cause of Low NAD+

While supplements such as NMN can certainly be helpful, if your NAD is low, your best bet is really to address the underlying cause. The good news is that this can be done through simple lifestyle strategies such as exercise, sauna bathing, fasting, realigning your circadian rhythm and minimizing electromagnetic field (EMF) exposure.

One of the reasons exercise, heat exposure and fasting work to address low NAD+ levels is because they are catabolic stressors that activate AMP protein kinase (AMPK). AMPK, in turn, activates an enzyme called NAMPT, which governs the NAD+ salvage pathway.

Blood flow restriction (BFR) training can be particularly beneficial in terms of exercise. It has been shown to naturally increase your NAD level and is very safe for the elderly. You can learn more about this in “BFR Training for Muscle Mass Maintenance.”

Your circadian rhythm, meanwhile, plays a role because it is controlled by longevity genes called sirtuins, SIRT1 in particular. If your circadian rhythm is misaligned, then sirtuins are not expressed, which in turn inhibits NAMPT, thereby shutting down your NAD+ salvage pathway.

Oxidative stress and inflammation also use up and deplete NAD+, and exercise, sauna and fasting all help to reduce these. As a result, less NAD+ is depleted. So, these strategies not only improve your NAD+ production, but also reduce your body’s NAD+ consumption. The end result is a higher NAD+ baseline.

EMF exposure, which is the topic of my book “EMF*D,” is one common source of oxidative stress, so it too increases your NAD+ consumption. It does this by activating PARP, a DNA repairing enzyme. Each time PARP is activated, it uses up 150 molecules of NAD+. Hence, reducing your EMF exposure can also be an important strategy to preserve and protect your NAD+ level.

Your body also uses up NAD+ to detoxify alcohol, so if nightly drinking is part of your routine, consider giving it up. To learn more about how healthy lifestyle strategies such as the ones mentioned here can improve your NAD+ level, consider reading through the paper “Healthy Lifestyle Recommendations: Do the Beneficial Effects Originate from NAD+ Amount at the Cellular Level?”13

NAD+ Is a Crucial Antiaging Component

So, to summarize, raising your NAD+ level and keeping it high has many important health benefits, from supporting mitochondrial function, which is crucial for general health and longevity, to protecting against severe COVID-19 and age-related muscle loss.

The great news is that this can easily be done by implementing the healthy lifestyle strategies reviewed above — exercise, sauna, fasting and recalibrating your circadian rhythm — while simultaneously avoiding things that deplete your body of NAD+, such as EMF exposure and excessive alcohol consumption. On top of that, supplements such as NMN together with normal doses of niacin can help boost your NAD+ in the short term.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2021/02/15/nicotinamide-adenine-dinucleotide-benefits.aspx

Hyperbaric Oxygen Treatment Reverses Signs of Aging

Hyperbaric oxygen treatment may be a practical method for slowing down the hands of time. At its foundation, aging represents a progressive loss of physiological capacity, researchers from Tel Aviv University and the Shamir Medical Center in Israel explained in the journal Aging.1

The biological deterioration leads to impaired functions and increased vulnerability to diseases, including cancer, heart disease, diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease and others.

Hyperbaric oxygen treatment (HBOT), the Aging study suggests, may target two cellular hallmarks of aging — shortening of telomeres and cellular senescence, or the loss of a cell’s ability to divide and grow — thereby reversing signs of the aging process in humans.2

Sixty Hyperbaric Oxygen Sessions Slow Down Aging

The research team has been exploring the benefits of exposure to high-pressure oxygen at different concentrations inside a pressure chamber for years, with studies showing such treatments improved stroke, brain injury and brain function that was damaged by aging.3

The current study looked at hyperbaric oxygen treatment on healthy adults aged 64 and over to determine its effects on the normal aging process at a cellular level.

Thirty-five subjects were exposed to a series of 60 hyperbaric oxygen sessions over a 90-day period. Blood samples, which were analyzed for immune cells, were collected before, during and after the treatments. Two exciting results were found:4

  • Telomeres at the end of chromosomes grew longer instead of shorter, at a rate of 20% to 38% depending on the type of cell
  • Senescent cells decreased significantly, by 11% to 37% depending on cell type

In a Tel Aviv University news release, study author Dr. Shai Efrati of the university’s Sackler School of Medicine, explained:

“Today telomere shortening is considered the ‘Holy Grail’ of the biology of aging. Researchers around the world are trying to develop pharmacological and environmental interventions that enable telomere elongation. Our HBOT protocol was able to achieve this, proving that the aging process can in fact be reversed at the basic cellular-molecular level.”

Telomeres and Cellular Senescence: Keys to Aging?

Telomeres are repetitive nucleotide sequences at the end of each chromosome. Sometimes compared to the plastic tip on a shoelace, telomeres help protect DNA, preserving chromosome stability and preventing “molecular contact with neighboring chromosomes.”5

Evidence suggests telomere length may predict morbidity and mortality, with shorter telomeres linked to an increased risk of premature death,6 but the link is controversial.

“This uncertainty is actually due to a kaleidoscope of biological and technical factors, including preanalytical issues (e.g., sample matrix), poor standardization of techniques used for their assessment, and dependence of telomere structure upon genetics, epigenetics, environment and behavioral attitudes, which may be present at a variable extent in various physiological or pathological conditions,” researchers wrote in the Annals of Translational Medicine.7

Still, despite the controversy, telomere shortening has been associated with a 23% higher risk of all-cause death, along with increased risk of certain cancers, including glioma, neuroblastoma, ovarian, endometrial, lung, kidney, bladder, skin and testicular.8

Telomere shortening is also said to represent a “major measurable molecular characteristic of aging of cells in vitro and in vivo,” which may have developed as a mechanism to protect against tumors in long-lived species.9

Dr. Amir Hadanny, chief medical research officer of the Sagol Center for Hyperbaric Medicine and Research at the Shamir Medical Center, an author of the featured study, added that lifestyle modifications and intense exercise have previously been found to slow telomere shortening, but HBOT appears to be another viable option:10

“In our study, only three months of HBOT were able to elongate telomeres at rates far beyond any currently available interventions or lifestyle modifications. With this pioneering study, we have opened a door for further research on the cellular impact of HBOT and its potential for reversing the aging process.”

Cellular senescence is also known to play a role in cellular aging, and the accumulation of senescent cells is believed to be an integral part of the aging process, even potentially acting as a causal factor in age-related disease.11

Research is underway to develop therapeutic strategies to interfere with cellular senescence, including eliminating senescent cells,12 and HBOT has emerged as one potential strategy.

Not Necessarily a Clear-Cut Fountain of Youth

It’s important to take the study’s limitations into account when evaluating whether HBOT is truly a fountain of youth, as the researchers imply. It was a small study, which means the results should be replicated in a larger sample of subjects.

Also, as mentioned, the use of telomere length as a marker for aging is in itself controversial. The study also measured telomere length on immune cells called T cells, which may fluctuate depending on a number of environmental conditions, such as exercise.

It’s a positive sign that HBOT also decreased cellular senescence in T cells, but as noted by Steve Hill, who serves on the board of directors for LEAF, a nonprofit promoting increased healthy human lifespan:13

“The problem with interpreting these results as rejuvenation or age reversal is that T cells are a poor choice of cell type to use for this kind of thing due to their highly dynamic nature. Unfortunately, they are a popular cell type to use in these sorts of studies, due to the ease of collection from the bloodstream.

These particular immune cells can have large variance in their telomere length based on the demand for cellular replication at that particular time.

T cell populations replicate rapidly in the face of pathogens, and with each replication, the telomeres shorten, meaning that telomere lengths can vary in these cell populations from day to day. Infection and other environmental factors can play a key role in the status of T cell telomeres, and this is why they are not overly useful as aging biomarkers.”

This isn’t to say that HBOT isn’t useful, as other experts agree HBOT can have significant benefits for longevity. One of the reasons I’m fascinated by HBOT, in particular, is because of its ability to improve mitochondrial function.14However, it should be viewed as one component of healthy aging, not necessarily a magic bullet that will stop it in its tracks.

How Does Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Work?

HBOT has long been used as a treatment for decompression sickness that can occur among scuba divers. When you sit in a hyperbaric oxygen therapychamber, you breathe air that has two to three times greater air pressure than normal, which allows your lungs to absorb more oxygen.

This, in turn, increases the amount of oxygen in your blood, which is transported throughout your body, fighting pathogenic bacteria and stimulating the release of healing growth factors and stem cells.15

In my interview in the video above with Dr. Jason Sonners, a chiropractor who has worked with HBOT for over 12 years, he explains that oxygen can be viewed as a nutrient. Your body needs it to carry out its regular functions and, when tissue is injured, it needs even more oxygen for healing.16

Most healthy individuals have somewhere between 96% and 98% oxygen in their hemoglobin, which means your capacity to increase your oxygen level is between 2% and 4%, were you to breathe medical-grade oxygen, for instance. However, you can increase your oxygen level far beyond that if your body is under pressure. According to Sonners:

“Two main laws govern how that works: Boyle’s Law and Henry’s Law. Basically, as you take a gas and exert pressure on it, you make the size of that gas take up less space. As a result of that pressure, you can then dissolve that gas into a liquid.

An easy example is a can of seltzer. They’re using carbon dioxide and water. But basically, you can pressurize that can, so you can put carbon dioxide into that can. As a result of that pressurization, you can dissolve molecules of carbon dioxide into the water.

In the hyperbaric version of that, we’re using oxygen, and the can is the chamber. But as a result of dumping excess oxygen inside that chamber, you can dissolve that into the liquid of your body … directly into the tissue and the plasma of your blood.

The oxygen in your blood is carried by hemoglobin. The plasma that carries your red blood cells that holds the hemoglobin normally does not carry oxygen. We rely wholly on red blood cell oxygen-carrying capacity. But inside the chamber, you could literally bypass the red blood cell oxygen-carrying capacity altogether, and you can absorb oxygen directly into the plasma and tissue of the body.”

HBOT Fights Mitochondrial and Oxidative Stresses, COVID-19

HBOT can be used to help speed healing of any inflammatory condition, and it’s known to facilitate wound healing and cell survival.

A small study involving 10 healthy men also revealed that a single 45-minute HBOT session reduced levels of metabolic stress-related biomarkers, including attenuating mitochondrial and oxidative stresses and relieving metabolic burdens, which suggests it may be useful for treating metabolic diseases.17

The fact that HBOT protects against mitochondrial dysfunction18 is a major benefit, considering most chronic and degenerative diseases involve mitochondrial dysfunction. Unfortunately, conventional medicine still reserves HBOT for a limited number of conditions, such as certain brain injuries and serious wounds, as well as the following:19

Severe anemia Brain abscess Bubbles of air in your blood vessels
Burns Carbon monoxide poisoning Crushing injury
Deafness, sudden Decompression sickness Gangrene
Infection of skin or bone that causes tissue death Nonhealing wounds, such as diabetic foot ulcer Radiation injury
Skin graft at risk of tissue death Traumatic brain injury Vision loss, sudden

In the U.S., there are only 14 conditions for which insurance will pay for HBOT, whereas there are up to 100 approved indications for HBOT internationally, according to Sonners.

From my perspective, it’s medically reprehensible and inexcusable for a doctor to not treat patients with diabetic neuropathy, infections in the distal extremities or peripheral vascular disease with HBOT, as it will in most cases prevent the need for amputation. Other conditions that may benefit from HBOT include:

All autoimmune conditions
Neurological conditions, including concussion, traumatic brain injury, dementiaand post-stroke
Musculoskeletal injuries, including broken bones, disk herniations, and torn muscles and tendons
Any condition involving mitochondrial dysfunction
Any condition involving damaged microcirculation or that can benefit from capillary growth
Chronic infections such as Lyme disease, and subacute infections that cause damage over time
Cancer co-management — As noted by Sonners, researchers are looking at HBOT in cancer treatments in a number of different ways. For example, doing it may allow you to use less radiation or chemo and still get the same outcome. Or, it may allow the patient to tolerate higher amounts of radiation by speeding the healing between sessions. A third avenue of investigation is the use of HBOT in isolation.

HBOT is also showing promise for treating COVID-19 via a number of beneficial effects, including reversing hypoxia, reducing inflammation in the lungs, increasing viricidal reactive oxygen species, upregulating HIF-increasing host defense peptides and reducing proinflammatory cytokines such as IL-6.20

Typically, hospitals will only provide HBOT if you have one of the 14 approved indications. If you’re interested in HBOT for other medical or longevity purposes, you’ll need to look into the private sector for treatment. The International Hyperbaric Association21 (IHA) and Hyperbaric Medical International22 (HMI) are two organizations that may direct you to more local centers.

You can also learn more on HBOTusa.com, which is Sonner’s primary education website where you can find a list of treated conditions, research, the benefits of HBOT in athletics, testimonials and much more.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2020/12/14/hyperbaric-oxygen-treatment-reverses-signs-of-aging.aspx

Study of Heart Attack Victims Showed Most Had Normal LDLs

Cardiovascular disease (CVD), or heart disease, is a term that refers to several types of heart conditions. Many of the problems associated with heart disease are related to atherosclerosis. This term refers to a condition in which there’s a buildup of plaque along the walls of the artery, making it more difficult for blood to flow and for oxygen to reach the muscles, including the heart.

This can be the underlying problem in cases of heart attack, stroke and heart failure. Other types of CVD happen when the valves in the heart are affected or there’s an abnormal heart rhythm.1

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the U.S. and it contributes to other leading causes including stroke, diabetes and kidney disease.2 It also ranks as the No. 1 cause of death around the world: Four out of five deaths are from heart attack or stroke.3

Heart disease accounts for 25% of deaths in the U.S. with a $219 billion price tag, based on data from 2014 to 2015.4 Scientists believe some of the key contributing factors are high blood pressure, smoking, diabetes, physical inactivity and excessive alcohol use.

Cholesterol Levels in People Who Had Heart Attacks

There is ongoing disagreement over the levels at which cholesterol presents a risk for heart disease and stroke. Added to this, many doctors and scientists continue to recommend lowering fat consumption and using medications to lower cholesterol levels.

A national study from the University of California Los Angeles showed that 72.1% of the people who had a heart attack did not have low-density (LDL) cholesterol levels, which would have indicated they were at risk for CVD. Their LDL cholesterol was within national guidelines and nearly half were within optimal levels.5

In fact, half the patients admitted with a heart attack who had CVD had LDL levels lower than 100 milligrams (mg), which is considered optimal; 17.6% had levels below 70 mg, which is the level recommended for people with moderate risk for heart disease.6

However, more than half the patients who were hospitalized with a heart attackhad high-density lipoproteins (HDL) in the poor range, based on a comparison to national guidelines.

The team used a national database with information on 136,905 people who received services from 541 hospitals across the U.S. They were admitted between 2000 and 2006 and, while they had their blood drawn upon arrival, only 59% had their lipid levels checked at that time.

Of those who were checked, out of everyone who was admitted with a heart attack but didn’t have CVD or Type 2 diabetes, 72.1% had LDL levels less than 130 mg/dL, which was the recommended level at the time of the study (2009).

In addition to this, researchers found the levels of HDL cholesterol (the “good” kind) had dropped compared to statistics from earlier years, with 54.6% having levels below 40 mg/dL.7 The desirable level for HDL is 60 mg/dL or higher.8

The findings led researchers to suggest that the guidelines for prescribing cholesterol medication should be adjusted — to lower the number at which drugs should be administered. In other words, they are suggesting that more people be put on cholesterol drugs. As explained by Dr. Gregg C. Fonarow, lead investigator:9

“Almost 75 percent of heart attack patients fell within recommended targets for LDL cholesterol, demonstrating that the current guidelines may not be low enough to cut heart attack risk in most who could benefit.”

The study was sponsored by the Get with the Guidelines program that’s supported by the American Heart Association, which promotes the use of statins for lowering LDL cholesterol.10 Fonarow has done research for GlaxoSmithKline and Pfizer, and has consulted for, and received honoraria from Merck, AstraZeneca, GlaxoSmithKline and Abbott — all of which manufacture cholesterol drugs, including statins.

Cholesterol Myth May Be Kept Alive by Big Pharma

While scientists and physicians continue to investigate the level of cholesterol that may affect heart attack risk, the theory that dietary cholesterol is a contributor has long been proven false. In the 1960s it may have been a conclusion that researchers made based on the available science, but decades later the evidence does not support the hypothesis.11

Yet, as some researchers have pointed out, the move toward removing dietary cholesterol limits has been slow. In the past 10 years, some have modified recommendations to address certain negative consequences of limiting dietary cholesterol, such as the risk of having inadequate levels of choline. Unfortunately, others have continued to promote low-fat diets and that could have hazardous results.

Whether discussing cholesterol intake or serum cholesterol levels, the data do not support the hypothesis that it relates to heart disease. I believe it appears that the evidence supporting the use of cholesterol-lowering statin drugs is likely little more than the manufactured work of pharmaceutical companies.

This also appears to be the conclusion of the authors of a scientific review published in the Expert Review of Clinical Pharmacology.12 The team identified significant flaws in three recent studies: “… large reviews recently published by statin advocates have attempted to validate the current dogma. This article delineates the serious errors in these three reviews as well as other obvious falsifications of the cholesterol hypothesis.”

The authors present substantial evidence that total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol are not indicators of heart disease risk. In addition, statin treatment is doubtful as a form of primary prevention. In their analysis, they point out that if high cholesterol levels were a major cause of atherosclerosis, patients with high total cholesterol whose levels were lowered the most by statin drugs should see the greatest benefit. However, evidence does not show that to be the case.

In another review of statin trials and other studies in which cholesterol was linked to heart disease, researchers could not find a correlation between cholesterol and the degree of coronary atherosclerosis, coronary calcification or peripheral atherosclerosis. They found no exposure response in which those with the highest level of cholesterol enjoyed the greatest benefit from reduction.13

These researchers propose the link between high LDL or total cholesterol and heart disease may be secondary to other factors that promote CVD, such as:14

“… lack of physical activity, mental stress, smoking, and obesity. It is generally assumed that their effect on cardiovascular disease is mediated through the high cholesterol, but this may be a secondary phenomenon.

Physical activity may benefit the cardiovascular system by improving endothelial function, or by stimulating the formation of collateral vessels; mental stress may have a harmful influence on adrenal hormone secretion, smoking increases the oxidant burden; in these all situations the high cholesterol may be an epiphenomenal indicator that something is wrong.”

Saturated Fat Is Crucial but Vegetable Oil Is Deadly

One of the reasons so many people are sick is that we’re constantly told that animal fats are unhealthy and industrial vegetable oils are not, and people believe it. The authors of a recent paper in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology admits the long-standing nutritional guideline to limit saturated fat is incorrect.

This is a tremendous step forward in righting a dietary wrong that started with Ancel Keys’ flawed hypothesis15 and has since had a significant impact on health and wellness. As the researchers note in the abstract:16

“The recommendation to limit dietary saturated fatty acid (SFA) intake has persisted despite mounting evidence to the contrary. Most recent meta-analyses of randomized trials and observational studies found no beneficial effects of reducing SFA intake on cardiovascular disease (CVD) and total mortality, and instead found protective effects against stroke.

Although SFAs increase low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, in most individuals, this is not due to increasing levels of small, dense LDL particles, but rather larger LDL particles, which are much less strongly related to CVD risk. It is also apparent that the health effects of foods cannot be predicted by their content in any nutrient group without considering the overall macronutrient distribution.

Whole-fat dairy, unprocessed meat, and dark chocolate are SFA-rich foods with a complex matrix that are not associated with increased risk of CVD. The totality of available evidence does not support further limiting the intake of such foods.”

In a recent speech at the Sheraton Denver Downtown Hotel, titled “Diseases of Civilization: Are Seed Oil Excesses the Unifying Mechanism?” Dr. Chris Knobbe revealed evidence that seed oils, so prevalent in modern diets, are the reason for most of today’s chronic diseases.17

His research charges the high consumption of omega-6 seed oil in everyday diets as the major unifying driver of the chronic degenerative diseases so prevalent in modern civilization.

He calls the inundation of Western diets with harmful seeds oils “a global human experiment … without informed consent.” You’ll find more, including a video of his presentation in “Are Seed Oils Behind the Majority of Diseases This Century?

Your Omega-3 Index Is More Predictive Than Cholesterol

The combination of a diet high in omega-6 fats commonly found in vegetable oils and low in omega-3 fats, commonly found in fatty fish, is yet another risk factor for coronary heart disease. As the National Institutes of Health describes:18

“The three main omega-3 fatty acids are alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). ALA is found mainly in plant oils such as flaxseed, soybean and canola oils. DHA and EPA are found in fish and other seafood.”

Each of the three fats plays a unique role in cellular health. The authors of one study analyzed the risk of a cardiovascular event while taking icosapent ethyl.19The medication is a “highly purified omega-3 fatty acid” that is “a synthetic derivative of the omega-3 fatty acid eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA).”20

Those who took the medication had a significantly lower number of ischemic events than those taking the placebo. An omega-3 deficiency leaves you vulnerable to chronic disease and lifelong challenges. The best way to determine if you’re getting enough is to be tested, as it’s a good predictor of all-cause mortality.21

The omega-3 index is a measure of the amount of EPA and DHA in red blood cell membranes. This has been validated as a stable and long-term marker because it reflects your tissue levels. An index greater than 8% is associated with the lowest risk of death, while an index lower than 4% places you at the highest risk of heart disease-related mortality.22

Your best sources of fatty fish are wild-caught Alaskan salmon, herring, mackerel and anchovies. The larger predatory fish, such as tuna, have much higher amounts of mercury and other toxins. It’s important to realize your body can’t convert enough plant-based omega-3 to meet your needs. That means that if you’re a vegan, you must figure out a way to compensate for the lack of marine or grass fed animal products in your diet.

If your test results are low, and you are considering a supplement, compare the advantages and disadvantages of fish oil and krill oil. Krill are wild-caught and sustainable, more potent than fish oil and less prone to oxidation. You’ll find more about the benefits of maintaining adequate levels of omega-3 fats in “Omega-3 Index More Predictive Than Cholesterol Levels.”

Know Your Cholesterol Ratios

The cholesterol myth has been a boon to the pharmaceutical industry since cholesterol-lowering statins have become some of the more frequently prescribed and used drugs. In a report by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force published in JAMA, evidence showed that 250 people need to take a statin drug for one to six years to prevent one death from any cause.23

When measuring cardiovascular death specifically, 500 would have to take a statin drug for two to six years to prevent even one death. As the evidence mounts that statin drugs are not the answer and simple cholesterol levels may not help you understand your risk of heart disease, it’s time to use other risk assessments.

In addition to an omega-3 index, you can get a more accurate idea of your risk of heart disease using an HDL/total cholesterol ratio, triglyceride/HDL ratio, fasting insulin level, fasting blood sugar level and iron level. You’ll find a discussion of the tests and measurements in “Cholesterol Does Not Cause Heart Disease.”


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2020/08/26/cholesterol-levels-in-people-who-had-heart-attacks.aspx

The Role of Magnesium for Cognitive Function in Older Adults

I’ve previously discussed the synergy between magnesium and vitamin D, and the importance of vitamin D for optimal immune function and overall health — especially as it pertains to lowering your risk of COVID-19. Previous studies have also highlighted the role this duo plays in cognitive function among older adults, as well as overall mortality.

Vitamin D and Magnesium Protect Cognitive Health

One such study,1 “Association of Vitamin D and Magnesium Status with Cognitive Function in Older Adults: Results from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 2011 to 2014,” points out that vitamin D not only protects neuronal structures and plays a role in neuronal calcium regulation, but also appears to impact your risk for neurodegeneration as you grow older.

Magnesium, meanwhile, aside from being required for converting vitamin D to its active form,2,3,4 also plays a role in cognitive health, and magnesium deficiency has been implicated in several neurological disorders.

Using NHANES data from 2,984 participants over the age of 60, the researchers compared serum vitamin D status and dietary magnesium intake against cognitive function scores.

After adjusting for confounding factors, including total calorie consumption and magnesium intake, higher blood levels of vitamin D positively correlated with decreased odds of having a low cognitive function score on the Digit Symbol Substitution Test.

The same trend was found when they looked at vitamin D intake, rather than blood level. The correlation of higher vitamin D levels and better cognitive function was particularly strong among those whose magnesium intake was equal to or greater than 375 mg per day. According to the authors:5

“We found that higher serum 25(OH)D levels were associated with reduced risk of low cognitive function in older adults, and this association appeared to be modified by the intake level of magnesium.”

Magnesium Improves Brain Plasticity

While magnesium intake by itself did not appear to have an impact on cognitive function in the study above, other research has highlighted its role in healthy cognition.

Memory impairment occurs when the connections (synapses) between brain cells diminish. While many factors can come into play, magnesium is an important one. As noted by Dr. David Perlmutter, a neurologist and fellow of the American College of Nutrition:6

“It has now been discovered that magnesium is a critical player in the activation of nerve channels that are involved in synaptic plasticity. That means that magnesium is critical for the physiological events that are fundamental to the processes of learning and memory.”

A specific form of magnesium called magnesium threonate was in 2010 found to enhance “learning abilities, working memory, and short- and long-term memory in rats.”7 According to the authors, “Our findings suggest that an increase in brain magnesium enhances both short-term synaptic facilitation and long-term potentiation and improves learning and memory functions.”

COVID-19 Can Deprive Brain of Oxygen

While we’re on the topic of the brain, a July 1, 2020, article8 in The Washington Post reviewed findings from autopsies of COVID-19 patients. Surprisingly, Chinese researchers have reported9 that COVID-19 patients can exhibit a range of neurological manifestations.

A June 12, 2020, letter to the editor10 published in The New England Journal of Medicine also discusses the neuropathological features of COVID-19. As reported by The Washington Post:11

“Patients have reported a host of neurological impairments, including reduced ability to smell or taste, altered mental status, stroke, seizures — even delirium … In June, researchers in France reported that 84% of patients in intensive care had neurological problems, and a third were confused or disoriented at discharge.

… Also this month, those in the United Kingdom found that 57 of 125 coronavirus patients with a new neurological or psychiatric diagnosis had experienced a stroke due to a blood clot in the brain, and 39 had an altered mental state.

Based on such data and anecdotal reports, Isaac Solomon, a neuropathologist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, set out to systematically investigate where the virus might be embedding itself in the brain.

He conducted autopsies of 18 consecutive deaths, taking slices of key areas: the cerebral cortex (the gray matter responsible for information processing), thalamus (modulates sensory inputs), basal ganglia (responsible for motor control) and others …”

Interestingly, while doctors and researchers initially suspected that brain inflammation was causing the neurological problems seen in some patients, Solomon’s autopsies found very little inflammation. Instead, these neurological manifestations appear to be the result of brain damage caused by oxygen deprivation.

Signs of oxygen deprivation were present both in patients who had spent a significant amount of time in intensive care, and those who died suddenly after a short but severe bout of illness. I believe this is likely due to increases in clotting in the brain microvasculature.

Solomon told The Washington Post he was “very surprised,” by the finding. It makes sense, though, considering COVID-19 patients have been found to be starved for oxygen. As reported by The Washington Post:12

“When the brain does not get enough oxygen, individual neurons die … To a certain extent, people’s brains can compensate, but at some point, the damage is so extensive that different functions start to degrade … The findings underscore the importance of getting people on supplementary oxygen quickly to prevent irreversible damage.”

Magnesium and Vitamin D Impact Mortality

Getting back to magnesium and vitamin D, previous research13 using NHANES data from 2001 through 2006 found the duo has a positive impact on overall mortality rates. This study also pointed out that magnesium “substantially reversed the resistance to vitamin D treatment in patients with magnesium-dependent vitamin-D-resistant rickets.”

The researchers hypothesized that magnesium supplementation increases your vitamin D level by activating more of it, and that your mortality risk might therefore be lowered by increasing magnesium intake. That is indeed what they found. According to the authors:

“High intake of total, dietary or supplemental magnesium was independently associated with significantly reduced risks of vitamin D deficiency and insufficiency respectively. Intake of magnesium significantly interacted with intake of vitamin D in relation to risk of both vitamin D deficiency and insufficiency.

Additionally, the inverse association between total magnesium intake and vitamin D insufficiency primarily appeared among populations at high risk of vitamin insufficiency.

Furthermore, the associations of serum 25(OH)D with mortality, particularly due to cardiovascular disease (CVD) and colorectal cancer, were modified by magnesium intake, and the inverse associations were primarily present among those with magnesium intake above the median.

Our preliminary findings indicate it is possible that magnesium intake alone or its interaction with vitamin D intake may contribute to vitamin D status. The associations between serum 25(OH)D and risk of mortality may be modified by the intake level of magnesium.”

Magnesium Lowers Vitamin D Requirement by 146%

According to a scientific review14,15 published in 2018, as many as 50% of Americans taking vitamin D supplements may not get significant benefit as the vitamin D simply gets stored in its inactive form, and the reason for this is because they have insufficient magnesium levels.

Research published in 2013 also highlighted this issue, concluding that higher magnesium intake helps reduce your risk of vitamin D deficiency by activating more of it. As noted by the authors:16

“High intake of total, dietary or supplemental magnesium was independently associated with significantly reduced risks of vitamin D deficiency and insufficiency respectively.

Intake of magnesium significantly interacted with intake of vitamin D in relation to risk of both vitamin D deficiency and insufficiency … Our preliminary findings indicate it is possible that magnesium intake alone or its interaction with vitamin D intake may contribute to vitamin D status.”

More recently, GrassrootsHealth concluded17 you need 146% more vitamin D to achieve a blood level of 40 ng/ml (100 nmol/L) if you do not take supplemental magnesium, compared to taking your vitamin D with at least 400 mg of magnesium per day.

Vitamin D Dose-Response by Supplemental Magnesium Intake

The interplay between magnesium and vitamin D isn’t a one-way street, though. It goes both ways. Interestingly, while vitamin D improves magnesium absorption,18 taking large doses of vitamin D can also deplete magnesium.19Again, the reason for that is because magnesium is required in the conversion of vitamin D into its active form.

Magnesium + Vitamin K Lowers Vitamin D Requirement Even More

Magnesium isn’t the only nutrient that can have a significant impact on your vitamin D status. GrassrootsHealth data further reveal you can lower your oral vitamin D requirement by a whopping 244% simply by adding magnesium and vitamin K2. As reported by GrassrootsHealth:20

“… 244% more supplemental vitamin D was needed for 50% of the population to achieve 40 ng/ml (100 nmol/L) for those not taking supplemental magnesium or vitamin K2 compared to those who usually took both supplemental magnesium and vitamin K2.”

Vitamin D Dose-Response

How to Boost Your Magnesium Level

The recommended daily allowance for magnesium is around 310 mg to 420 mg per day depending on your age and sex,21 but many experts believe you may need anywhere from 600 mg to 900 mg per day.22

Personally, I believe many may benefit from amounts as high as 1 to 2 grams (1,000 to 2,000 mg) of elemental magnesium per day, as most of us have EMF exposures that simply cannot be mitigated, and the extra magnesium may help lower the damage from that exposure.

My personal recommendation is that unless you have kidney disease and are on dialysis, continually increase your magnesium dose until you have loose stools and then cut it back. You want the highest dose you can tolerate and still have normal bowel movements.

When it comes to oral supplementation, my personal preference is magnesium threonate, as it appears to be the most efficient at penetrating cell membranes, including your mitochondria and blood-brain barrier. But I am also fond of magnesium malate, magnesium citrate, and ionic magnesium from molecular hydrogen as each tablet has 80 mg of elemental magnesium.

Eat More Magnesium-Rich Foods

Last but not least, while you may still need magnesium supplementation (due to denatured soils), it would certainly be wise to try to get as much magnesium from your diet as possible. Dark-green leafy vegetables lead the pack when it comes to magnesium content, and juicing your greens is an excellent way to boost your intake. Foods with high magnesium levels include:23

Avocados Swiss chard
Turnip greens Beet greens
Herbs and spices such as coriander, chives, cumin seed, parsley, mustard seeds, fennel, basil and cloves Broccoli
Brussel sprouts Organic, raw grass fed yogurt and natto
Bok Choy Romaine lettuce


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2020/07/16/magnesium-cognitive-function.aspx

The Importance of Muscle in Healthy Aging

The older you get, the more important your muscle mass becomes. Not only are strong muscles a requirement for mobility, balance and the ability to live independently, but having reserve muscle mass will also increase your chances of survival1 when sick or hospitalized.

Muscle is lost far more easily and quicker than it’s built, so finding ways to continuously promote and maintain your muscle mass is really crucial, especially as you get older.

Age-related loss of muscle mass is known as sarcopenia, and if you don’t do anything to stop it you can expect to lose about 15% of your muscle mass between your 30s and your 80s.2 An estimated 10% to 25% of seniors under the age of 70 have sarcopenia and as many as half those over the age of 80 are impaired with it.3

In the lecture above, Brendan Egan, Ph.D., associate professor of sport and exercise physiology at the School of Health and Human Performance and the National Institute for Cellular Biotechnology at Dublin City University in Ireland, reviews the latest research on exercise training for aging adults, which places a significant focus on building and maintaining muscle, and the nutritional components that can help optimize training results.

Muscle Strength and Function in Relation to Muscle Size

While it’s true that larger muscle is indicative of stronger, more functional muscle, it’s not a true 1-to-1 relationship. As noted by Egan, “you can have situations where you can gain back function without necessarily gaining muscle size.” To illustrate this point, Egan presents data from the Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging, which looked at leg strength and lean muscle mass.

While declines in muscle mass and strength are relatively well-synchronized in the 35- to 40-year-old group, strength dramatically drops off as you get into the 75-year-old and over groups, with 85-year-olds seeing dramatic declines in strength and function relative to the decline in muscles size.

Speed as a Measure of Functional Muscle Capacity

One way to measure functional capacity in older adults is gait (walking) speed, which is a strong predictor of life expectancy. Data suggest that if you have a walking speed of 1.6 meters (about 5.2 feet) per second (approximately 3.5 mph) at the age of 65, your life expectancy is another 32 years, meaning you may live into your late 90s.

Having a walking speed at or below the cutoff for sarcopenia, which is 0.8 meters (about 2.6 feet) per second, your life expectancy would be another 15 years, which means you’d be predicted to live to 80. At this speed, you would not be able to make it safely across a typical pedestrian crossing before the light changes to red.

Strength as a Predictor of Survival

Strength can also tell us a lot about an individual’s chances of survival. Egan presents data from a study in which people’s chest and leg press strength were measured to arrive at a composite score of whole body strength. The pattern is quite revealing, showing the strongest one-third of the population over 60 had a 50% lower death rate than the weakest.

Exercise guidelines recommend getting 150 minutes of aerobics exercise and two strength training sessions per week. As noted by Egan, you need both. It’s not just one or the other.

Research shows aerobic exercise in isolation reduces your all-cause mortality by 16% and strength training-only reduces it by 21%, whereas if you do both, you reduce your all-cause mortality by 29%.4 Disturbingly, U.K. data suggest only 36.2% of adults over the age of 30 meet aerobic guidelines, and a minuscule 3.4% meet strength training guidelines.

Part of the problem may be that many don’t want to go to the gym. But there’s little difference between doing gym-based strength training and doing bodyweight resistance training at home.

The Danger of Bedrest and Disuse Atrophy

As noted by Egan, enforced bedrest, such as acute hospitalization, can have a dramatic impact on your muscle mass. For example, a 2015 review5 in Extreme Physiology & Medicine notes you can lose 2.5% of your muscle mass in the first two weeks of bedrest. By Day 23, you can have lost up to 10% of your quadriceps muscle mass. As explained in this review:6

“Skeletal muscle mass is regulated by a balance between MPS [muscle protein synthesis] and MPB [muscle protein breakdown]. In a 70-kg human, approximately 280 g of protein is synthesized and degraded each day.

The two processes are linked … as facilitative or adaptive processes, whereby MPS facilitates (allows modulation of muscle mass) and MPB adapts (limiting said modulation).

When exposed to an anabolic stimulus, MPS rises. MPB rises too, but to a lesser amount, resulting in a net synthetic balance. In response to an anti-anabolic stimulus, MPS decreases and MPB decreases to a lesser degree, resulting in a net breakdown.

The interaction between critical illness and bed rest may result in greater muscle loss compared to bed rest alone. The musculoskeletal system is a highly plastic and adaptive system, responding quickly to changing demands. Relatively short periods of immobilization decrease MPS, with no effect on MPB.

Furthermore, this altered balance is relatively resistant to high dose amino acid delivery … Immobilization has significant effects on peripheral muscle aerobic capacity, contractility, insulin resistance and architecture.

Microvascular dysfunction occurring in severe sepsis is associated with immobilization and may have an additive effect on reducing MPS. In critically ill patients, MPS is reduced even with nutritional delivery, with increased MPB seen, leading to a net catabolic state and thus muscle wasting.”

Research7 has shown even healthy young subjects in their 20s can lose 3.1 pounds of muscle mass in a single week of bedrest. This is why it is so important to have a reserve in case you wind up in the hospital and lose this much muscle mass. It may take you the better part of a year to regain that muscle, as gaining muscle mass is hard work and many elderly fail to do so.

The loss of muscle mass also significantly decreases your insulin sensitivity. One of the reasons for this has to do with the fact that muscle tissue is a significant reservoir for the disposal of glucose. Your muscle tissue also produces cytokines and anti-inflammatory myokines that play an important role in health.

Concurrent Exercise Training

While three to five sessions of aerobic exercise and two or more strength sessions per week may sound like a lot, for many, the lack of time is a restricting factor. However, some of these sessions can be done together. “That’s called concurrent exercise training,” Egan says.

He goes on to cite research looking at time matched concurrent exercise in the elderly, 65 and older, where an aerobic training group and a strength training group were compared to a group that spent half of their session doing aerobic exercise and the other half doing resistance training. All groups spent the same overall time exercising (30 minutes, three times a week for 12 weeks).

In terms of leg strength, the concurrent training group had better responses to training than aerobic or strength training alone. There was little difference in lean body mass, meaning they didn’t necessarily bulk up, but they had a 50% increase in strength nonetheless. They also lost more body fat around the trunk area. In short, concurrent training appears to give you more bang for your buck.

Blood Flow Restriction Training

One of the reasons I’m so passionate about blood flow restriction (BFR) training is because it has the ability to prevent and widely treat sarcopenia like no other type of training.

There are several reasons why BFR is far superior to conventional types of resistance training in the elderly. Importantly, it allows you to use very light weights, which makes it suitable for the elderly and those who are already frail or recovering from an injury. And, since you’re using very light weights, you don’t damage the muscle and therefore don’t need to recover as long.

While most elderly cannot engage in high-intensity exercise or heavy weightlifting, even extraordinarily fit individuals in their 60s, 70s and 80s who can do conventional training will be limited in terms of the benefits they can achieve, thanks to decreased microcirculation. This is because your microcirculation tends to decrease with age.

With age, your capillary growth diminishes, and capillary blood flow is essential to supply blood to your muscle stem cells, specifically the fast twitch Type II muscle fiber stem cells. If they don’t have enough blood flow — even though they’re getting the signal from the conventional strength training — they’re not going to grow and you’re not going to get muscle hypertrophy and strength.

BFR, because of the local hypoxia that is created, stimulates hypoxia-inducible factor-1 alpha (HIF1a) and, secondarily, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), which acts as “fertilizer” for your blood vessels. VEGF allows your stem cells to function the way they were designed to when they were younger.

What’s more, the hypoxia also triggers vascular endothelial growth factor, which enhances the capillarization of the muscle and likely the veins in the arteries as well. Building muscle and improving blood vessel function are related, which is why BFR offers such powerful stimulus for reversing sarcopenia.

In short, BFR has a systemic or crossover training effect. While you’re only restricting blood flow to your extremities, once you release the bands, the metabolic variables created by the hypoxia flow into your blood — lactate and VEGF being two of them — thereby spreading this “metabolic magic” throughout your entire system. To learn more, please see my special report, “What You Need to Know About BFR,” and “BFR Training for Muscle Mass Maintenance.”

Nutrition for Muscle Maintenance

It should come as no surprise that there is an important synergy between nutrition and exercise. When it comes to muscle building and maintenance, amino acids, the building blocks of protein, are of particular importance.

In the podcast above, Megan Hall, scientific director at Nourish Balance Thrive delves into this topic at greater depth and reviews the current recommended daily allowances of protein compared to the optimal levels needed to support muscle mass and strength in at various life stages.8

Research9 looking at post-prandial protein handling and amino acid absorption shows 55.3% of the dietary protein of a given meal is in circulation within five hours after eating, which significantly increases muscle protein synthesis.

Research10 suggests healthy young adult men “max out the protein synthesis signal from a given meal” at a dose of 0.24 grams of protein per kilogram of total bodyweight, or 0.25 grams of protein per kilogram of lean body mass.

The current U.S.-Canadian recommended dietary protein allowance is 0.8 g/kg/d (0,36/grams/pound/day), but healthy older adults may actually require about 1.20 g/kg/d or .55 grams/pound/day. According to this study:11

“Our data suggest that healthy older men are less sensitive to low protein intakes and require a greater relative protein intake, in a single meal, than young men to maximally stimulate postprandial rates of MPS [myofibrillar protein synthesis].

These results should be considered when developing nutritional solutions to maximize MPS for the maintenance or enhancement of muscle mass with advancing age.”

Amino acids also act as signaling molecules that trigger muscle growth. Leucineis a particularly potent signaling agent, although all of the amino acids are required to actually build the muscle. The richest source of leucine (which helps regulate the turnover of protein in your muscle), by far, is whey protein. In fact, it can be difficult to obtain sufficient amounts of leucine from other sources.

The typical requirement for leucine to maintain body protein is 1 to 3 grams daily. However, to optimize its anabolic pathway, research shows12 you need somewhere between 8 and 16 grams of leucine per day, in divided doses.13,14

To reach the 8-gram minimum, you’d have to eat nearly 15 eggs.15 Whey, on the other hand, contains about 10% leucine (10 grams of leucine per 100 grams of protein).16 So, 80 grams of whey protein will give you 8 grams of leucine.

Time-Restricted Eating Adds Benefits

One of the problems with Egan is that he’s not very literate on time-restricted eating. During the question and answer portion, an audience member asks him about it and he admits he hasn’t studied it.

This is important because restricting your eating window to six to eight hours, which means you’re fasting 14 to 18 hours each day, would make it far easier for each of the meals to be over the leucine threshold. It will also activate autophagy, which is another factor essential for optimal muscle growth.

Autophagy is a self-cleaning process in which your body digests damaged cells, which in turn encourages the proliferation of new, healthy cells. The harder your workout, the more autophagy you will activate.

So, I recommend fasting for as long as you can before your morning workout, and then, shortly thereafter, have your largest meal of the day with plenty of high-quality protein, making sure you get several grams of leucine and arginine, both of which are potent mTOR stimulators.

The mTOR pathway is an important key for protein synthesis and muscle building. As explained in David Sabatini’s excellent review paper “mTOR at the Nexus of Nutrition, Growth, Ageing and Disease,” published in Nature Reviews Molecular Cell Biology:17

“Over the past two and a half decades, mapping of the mTOR signaling landscape has revealed that mTOR controls biomass accumulation and metabolism by modulating key cellular processes, including protein synthesis and autophagy.

Given the pathway’s central role in maintaining cellular and physiological homeostasis, dysregulation of mTOR signaling has been implicated in metabolic disorders, neurodegeneration, cancer and ageing.”

In summary, fasting activates autophagy, allowing your body to clean out damaged subcellular parts. Exercising while fasted maximizes autophagy even further. In fact, exercising while you are fasting for more than 14 to 18 hours likely activates as much autophagy as if you were fasting for two to three days. It does this by increasing AMPK, increasing NAD+ and inhibiting mTOR.

Refeeding with protein after your fasted workout then activates mTOR, thus shutting down autophagy and starting the rebuilding process. These two processes need to be cyclically activated to optimize your health and avoid problems.

Muscle Health Is Central to an Active Lifestyle

As noted by Egan, “Hopefully I’ve convinced you that muscle health is central to active lifestyles. There’s been this increased awareness of muscle size, but I think we need to emphasize the idea about strength and function. These are the things that are easiest to change with the right type of training.”

In short, if you want to increase muscle size and strength, then there’s no getting around resistance training. It simply must be part of your exercise prescription, and concurrent training, where you’re combining aerobic and strength training in a given session is a time-efficient model.

BFR is also a particularly excellent way to ensure you’re getting effective strength training without the risks of conventional strength training using heavy weights, and is easy to combine with exercises such as walking and swimming. You simply wear the BFR bands while walking or exercising as normal.

Defy Aging by Improving Your Muscle Mass

In my February 2020 interview with Ben Greenfield, author of “Boundless: Upgrade Your Brain, Optimize Your Body & Defy Aging,” we discuss the importance of strength training and getting the appropriate amount of protein to build and maintain your muscle mass and optimize mitochondrial density and biogenesis.

In summary, Greenfield recommends a fitness program that includes the following types of exercise in order to target the main pathways involved in health and aging:

High-intensity interval training once a week to boost mitochondrial density and biogenesis — Brief spurts of exercise followed by longer rest periods. Greenfield recommends a 3-to-1 or 4-to-1 rest-to-work ratio.

Muscle endurance training two to three times a week to improve lactic acid tolerance — An example is the classic Tabata set, which has a 2-to-1 work-to-rest ratio.

Longer training sessions twice a week to improve your VO2 max — To target and improve your VO2 max, you’ll want your training sessions to be longer, about four to six minutes in duration with four to six minutes of recovery in between, for a 1-to-1 work-to-rest ratio.

Examples include The New York Times’ seven-minute workout18 and bodyweight training done in a fast explosive manner or with a very light medicine ball, sandbag or kettle bells.

Long walk once a week to improve your stamina — Greenfield recommends taking a 1.5- to three-hourlong walk, bike ride or paddle session — anything where your body is engaged in chronic repetitive motion for a long period of time — preferably in a fasted state. Alternatively, do 20 to 30 minutes of fasted cardio followed by a cold shower.

Super-slow weight training once or twice a week to improve muscle strength — Alternatives include elastic band training systems and blood flow restriction (BFR) training. You can also combine BFR with super-slow training.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2020/03/14/skeletal-muscle-aging.aspx

Omega-3 Index More Predictive Than Cholesterol Levels

The ketogenic diet is beneficial for many people as it helps with weight control and management and offers protection against a number of health ailments. Approached incorrectly, however, it can actually be harmful.

In this short video Dr. Eric Berg warns, “The last thing you want to do is get the benefits of the ketogenic diet but then have deficiencies of omega-3 fatty acids.” If you’re following a standard ketogenic nutrition plan I recommend you focus on eating healthy fats and 1 gram of protein for every kilogram of body mass. You should also keep your net carbohydrates to not more than 10% of your daily calories.

However, if you’re not getting enough omega-3 fat it can be detrimental to your health. As Berg describes, your body uses fat for many reasons, including the lining and protection of cell membranes, the processing of fat soluble vitamins, the catalyzation of chemical reactions, and the production of hormones and bile. Without enough healthy fat, and the right kinds of fat, you may increase your risk for negative health conditions.

Omega-3 fats are one type of polyunsaturated fats (PUFAs) you must get from your food since your body doesn’t make them.1 The second type of PUFAs are omega-6 fats. Your body needs both in a balanced ratio for optimal health.

As the National Institutes of Health describes,2 “The three main omega-3 fatty acids are alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). ALA is found mainly in plant oils such as flaxseed, soybean and canola oils. DHA and EPA are found in fish and other seafood.”

Omega-3 Fats Are Crucial to Heart Health

EPA, DHA and ALA each have unique functions. DHA is particularly important for your brain,3 as about 90 percent of the fat in your brain is DHA, while EPA appears to be of particular importance for heart health.4 ALA, found in plants, is the “parent fatty acid” and is used as a source of energy.

However, while some may be converted to EPA and DHA in the body, conversion to EPA is restricted and unreliable, and conversion to DHA is severely restricted.5 Making lifestyle changes, such as exercising, stopping smoking and improving your diet, have a significant impact on your heart health.

The authors of one study published in the New England Journal of Medicine6analyzed the risk of a cardiovascular event while taking icosapent ethyl. The medication is a “highly purified eicosapentaenoic acid ethyl ester” that is “a synthetic derivative of omega-3 fatty acid.”7

The data8 were based on information gathered from 8,179 participants who were followed over a period of 4.9 years. The researchers identified end points of the study as death from a cardiac event, or a nonfatal heart attack or stroke.

The participants either had heart disease or risk factors for it and were taking statins. They were given either a placebo or 2 grams of icosapent ethyl twice a day. Those who took the medication had a significantly lower number of ischemic events than those taking the placebo.

Although the drug had previously been approved in 2012 for people with high triglycerides, in December 2019 the FDA approved it for use alongside statins.9Its mechanism of action has not been completely identified, but the American Heart Association lists the following reasons natural omega-3 may have an impact on lowering the risk of heart disease:10

Lowers triglyceride levels and increases HDLs Decreases platelet aggregation and prevents blockage of coronary artery
Lowers resting blood pressure Increases compliance of arteries
Decreases atherosclerosis Reduces inflammatory markers
Decreases risk of abnormal heart rhythms

As explained in a meta-analysis published in Circulation,11 scientists concluded there was a growing body of evidence that omega-3 fats can prevent sudden cardiac death by “modulating ion channels so as to stabilize the cardiomyocytes electrically.”

EPA and DHA Lowers Inflammation, Pain and Depression

EPA and DHA have been shown to improve blood pressure,12 reduce overall inflammation, reduce the effects of rheumatoid arthritis13 and depression14and help to slow the progression of Alzheimer’s disease.15

Other conditions linked to inflammation that are positively affected by omega-3 fatty acids are Hashimoto’s disease and inflammatory bowel disease. Nutritionist Steph Lowe spoke with Starts at 60 about omega-3 fats, saying:16

“Fish oil is a natural alternative to non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID), without the side effects but with the potential to reduce the inflammatory response and thereby reduces joint stiffness and pain.”

Your Body Needs Cholesterol for Vital Functions

For decades you’ve been told that high cholesterol levels will increase your risk for heart disease. In fact, some in the health community continue to stress your level of cholesterol as a biomarker for heart risk, when in fact it’s smarter to take a global view of cholesterol — how it affects your body and what you can do to reduce your risk of heart disease beyond the simple narrative which focuses on cholesterol as some kind of culprit.

Cholesterol is vital to your overall health, as it helps with the manufacturing of hormones and vitamin D. About 80% of the cholesterol in your body is made in your liver and intestines, while the rest has to come from your food.17

There are two categories of cholesterol: The first is high density lipoprotein (HDL), which many know as the “good” type that moves cholesterol out of your arteries.18

The second is low-density lipoprotein (LDL) or what many know as the “bad” type that may build up and form plaque in the arteries. The American Heart Association focuses on your total cholesterol number, which they recommend you keep at 150 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL).19

In the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, it’s noted that the Institute of Medicine recommends20 “… individuals should eat as little dietary cholesterol as possible while consuming a healthy eating pattern.” However, in the Scientific Report of the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, it was acknowledged that “… cholesterol is not considered a nutrient of concern for overconsumption.”21

It’s troubling to know that the public hears one thing and something completely different is discussed at a medical advisory meeting.

Using cholesterol as a sole marker for the risk of heart disease is inaccurate because, like most things related to your body, its mechanisms are complex and interrelated. Increasing amounts of evidence show that people with higher levels of cholesterol live longer lives.22 As summarized by the authors of one study:

“Overall, an inverse trend is found between all-cause mortality and total (or low density lipoprotein [LDL]) cholesterol levels: mortality is highest in the lowest cholesterol group without exception … elderly people with the highest cholesterol levels have the highest survival rates irrespective of where they live in the world.”

While evaluating your heart disease risk, consider your fasting insulin and blood sugar levels, waist circumference and iron levels. I discuss the relationships of these factors to your heart health and the importance of differentiating the types of LDL in “Important Facts About Cholesterol and Heart Disease.”

There are a number of ways higher levels of cholesterol may have a protective effect on your health; these are discussed in “Higher Cholesterol is Associated With Longer Life.” Instead of looking at simple levels, there are two indicators that are important: your HDL/total cholesterol ratio and your triglyceride/HDL ratio.

Why Testing Your Omega-3 Level Is so Important

An omega-3 deficiency leaves you vulnerable to several chronic diseases and lifelong challenges. Optimizing your levels is truly a foundational strategy to attaining and maintaining good health. The best way to determine if you’re eating enough food with omega-3 is to get tested.

In fact, research23 supported by the National Institutes of Health suggests that an omega-3 test is a good predictor of overall health and all-cause mortality.24

Leaders of the study measured the omega-3 index in 2,500 participants; they found that those with the highest omega-3 index had lower risks of heart problems. The omega-3 Index is a measure of the amount of EPA and DHA in the membranes of your red blood cells (RBCs). As Berg mentioned, fat is a component of cell membranes.

Your index is expressed as a percent of your total RBC fatty acids. The omega-3 index has been validated as a stable, long-term marker of your omega-3 status, and it reflects your tissue levels of EPA and DHA. I just had my omega-3 index done last week from GrassrootsHealth and it was 11.1% and my 6:3 ratio was 2.7.

An omega-3 index over 8% is associated with the lowest risk of death from heart disease, while an index below 4% places you at the highest risk of heart disease-related mortality. Given its importance to your health, it is absolutely worth your time to complete the simple blood test required to determine your omega-3 index.

I firmly believe an omega-3 index test is one of the most important annual health screens that everyone needs. Please note I make no profit from these tests. I merely supply them as a convenience for my readers. It’s the same price whether you buy it from me or directly from GrassrootsHealth.25

Protect Your Heart and Brain With Animal-Based Omega-3

You can get all three types of omega-3 fats from your food, but EPA and DHA come mostly from fatty fish, seafood and grass fed beef and dairy products. Grass fed beef and dairy products, incidentally, offer a nearly 1-to-1 ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acids.26 Lowe points out the importance of where you source your fish:27

“As a nutritionist, my preference is always food, but one of the biggest challenges we face at the moment is that most of our oily fish is farmed and grain-fed.”

Your best sources of fatty fish are wild-caught Alaskan salmon, herring, mackerel and anchovies. The larger predatory fish, such as tuna, have much higher amounts of toxins such as mercury. As Berg stated in the video, steer clear of grain-finished beef as the omega-3 fatty acids are significantly reduced.

As I touched on above, it’s important to realize your body doesn’t convert enough plant-based omega-3 to meet your needs. This means that if you’re vegan, you must figure out a way to compensate for the lack of marine or grass fed animal products in your diet.

While the authors of some studies28 suggest that algae products may be an effective alternative, the only way to know if you’re on the right track is to test. If you are pregnant I urge you to check your vitamin D and omega-3 levels, as these two nutrients are vital for healthy fetal development and can dramatically reduce your risk of complications during pregnancy and delivery.

If your test results are low, and you are considering a supplement, compare the advantages and disadvantages of fish oil and krill oil as you’ll see in the infographic below. Krill are wild-caught and sustainable; krill oil is also more potent than fish oil and is less prone to oxidation.


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<img src=”https://media.mercola.com/assets/images/infographic/krill-oil-vs-fish-oil.jpg&#8221; alt=”krill oil vs fish oil infographics” border=”0″ style=”max-width:100%; min-width:300px; margin: 0 auto 20px auto; display:block;” /><p style=”max-width:800px; min-width:300px; margin:0 auto; text-align:center;”>Learn why krill oil is a safer and smarter choice than fish oil through the <a href=”https://www.mercola.com/infographics/fish-oil-vs-krill-oil.htm”><strong>Fish Oil versus Krill Oil: The Cold, Hard Facts</strong></a> infographic. Use the embed code to share it on your website or visit our infographic page for the high-res version.</p> <pre style=”max-width:800px; min-width:300px; margin: 20px auto 0 auto; padding:10px; border:solid 1px #999999; background: #ffffff; white-space: pre-wrap; word-wrap:break-word;”><code>&lt;img src=”https://media.mercola.com/assets/images/infographic/krill-oil-vs-fish-oil.jpg&#8221; alt=”krill oil vs fish oil infographics” border=”0″ style=”max-width:100%; min-width:300px; margin: 0 auto 20px auto; display:block;”&gt;&lt;p style=”max-width:800px; min-width:300px; margin:0 auto; text-align:center;”&gt;Learn why krill oil is a safer and smarter choice than fish oil through the &lt;a href=”https://www.mercola.com/infographics/fish-oil-vs-krill-oil.htm”&gt;&lt;strong&gt;Fish Oil versus Krill Oil: The Cold, Hard Facts&lt;/strong&gt;&lt;/a&gt; infographic. Visit our infographic page for the high-res version.&lt;/p&gt;</code></pre>

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Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2020/02/24/omega-3-index-more-predictive-than-cholesterol-levels.aspx

10 Ways to Live Longer

Youthfulness, vitality and a long, prosperous life have been sought after throughout human history. And now, it seems scientists may have discovered one of the keys to turning back the hands of time.

Researchers from Arizona State University and Texas A&M University have made a breakthrough discovery in plant DNA that could lead to stopping cancer cold and slowing the aging process, ABC affiliate News 15 Arizona reports.1

The research involves telomerase, an enzyme that produces the DNA of telomeres, which have been shown to play a role in the aging process. As your telomeres lengthen, they protect your cells from aging.

Take It From the Experts: Centenarians Share Their Secrets

While direct applications from the study to human health are distant, there are a number of things you can do now to improve your health span, according to one of the co-authors. In interviews and surveys with centenarians, certain themes came up time and time again when they explained why they’ve lived so long. The 10 most common reasons they gave for their long lives were:

Keeping a positive attitude Eating good food
Participating in moderate exercise like walking, gardening swimming, etc. Living clean (not smoking or drinking excessively)
Living independently Having family to interact with
Having a circle of friends Being born with “good” genes
Having faith/spirituality Staying mentally active and continually learning

Centenarians are the fastest growing segment of the U.S population, with numbers doubling every decade; by the year 2050, the number of people who will have reached the century mark is expected to pass 1 million.

Centenarians have 60% lower rates of heart disease, stroke and high blood pressure, yet scientific explanations for their health and longevity remain elusive. As a group, they are happy and optimistic and have extremely low rates of depression and other psychiatric problems, suggesting you may live longer by maintaining the right attitude.

Hopefulness and Positivity Affect the Heart

There are compelling links between cardiac health and mental health. For example, having untreated depression or anxiety disorder increases your odds of having a heart attack or developing heart disease. Stress hormones are again a primary culprit.

According to Julia Boehm, author of earlier Harvard studies looking at optimism and cardiovascular disease (CVD):2

“The absence of the negative is not the same thing as the presence of the positive. We found that factors such as optimism, life satisfaction and happiness are associated with reduced risk of CVD regardless of such factors as a person’s age, socioeconomic status, smoking status or body weight.”

With a later study,3 author Eric Kim told The Harvard Gazette:

“While most medical and public health efforts today focus on reducing risk factors for diseases, evidence has been mounting that enhancing psychological resilience may also make a difference.

Our new findings suggest that we should make efforts to boost optimism, which has been shown to be associated with healthier behaviors and healthier ways of coping with life challenges.”

The Significance of Sound Sleep

Getting adequate sleep is an important part of both mental and physical health. Too much or too little can lead to metabolic issues, as well as changes in mood and your ability to focus. Your circadian rhythm, which affects your sleep/wake cycle, holds implications for your brain, body temperature, hormones and cell regeneration among other things.4

“Irregular rhythms have been linked to various chronic health conditions, such as sleep disorders, obesity, diabetes, depression, bipolar disorder and seasonal affective disorder,” say scientists from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences.5

Italian researchers found that deletion of a specific gene related to aging also affects glucose homeostasis. According to their article, published in the journal Glia, “Disruption of the circadian cycle is strongly associated with metabolic imbalance and reduced longevity in humans.”6

Telomeres and telomerase activity are also controlled by your circadian rhythm,7 making proper sleep an important part of longevity. In a 2007 study involving 21,268 adult twins, Finnish researchers found that adults who slept more than eight hours per night, or less than seven, showed increased risk of death.8

Of course, the quality of your sleep is also important, not just the quantity. Good quality sleep, in the appropriate amount, can improve how you think and adapt to the demands on your time and changes throughout your day. There is evidence suggesting that a calm mind and active body are two important ingredients for longevity.

The meditative technique known as “mindfulness” has even been shown to have a beneficial effect on genetic expression. According to a 2018 article in Brain, Behavior, and Immunity,9 meditation has also been found to affect the enzyme telomerase, which some researchers believe is actively involved with the process of aging.

After Resting, Be Sure to Refuel

Additionally, there are many other strategies you can implement to improve your health and extend your life span. To live longer, you need to counteract the progressive loss of muscle mass by increasing your protein intake as you age. The elderly, bodybuilders and endurance athletes typically have higher than normal protein requirements for their age group.

It’s also important to cycle high and low protein intake. Ideally, combine protein restriction with time-restricted eating, followed by increased protein intake on strength training days.

Fasting 16 to 20 hours each day is likely ideal, as this allows your body to more thoroughly deplete the glycogen stores in your liver. Benefits of fasting include the suppression of mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) and the activation of autophagy, both of which play decisive roles in disease prevention and longevity.

You’d also be wise to avoid eating two to three hours before bed, as late-night eating will decrease your nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) level, which is crucial for health and longevity. Late-night eating will also make you pack on unwanted pounds, as the excess calories will not be burned but stored as fat.

Preventing Cognitive Decline

Naturally, if you’re going to live longer, you’ll want to be healthy for the remainder, and that includes maintaining your cognitive function. Specific nutrients that can help prevent dementia and cognitive decline include vitamin D, DHA, folate and magnesium. Additional nutrients of notable interest, which are readily available in supplement form, include:

  • Astaxanthin Commonly called “king of the carotenoids,” is a potent anti-inflammatory from specific types of microalgae and may be useful for treating joint and muscle pain. It also supports healthy vision and can be used as an “internal sunscreen.”
  • Ergothioneine — Found in porcini mushrooms, ergothioneine appears to play a specific role in protecting your DNA from oxidative damage. Along with glutathione, it may offer protection against age-related conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, cancer and heart disease.
  • PQQ — Particularly important for the health and protection of your mitochondria, PQQ has been shown to help protect against Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. It also works synergistically with CoQ10, producing better results than when either one is used alone. Celery, parsley and kiwi are dietary sources of PQQ.

Kick the Chemicals to the Curb

Naturally, there’s also the issue of toxic exposures, which can take a toll on your health, so avoiding toxins is a given, right along with eating a wholesome diet of organic, unprocessed foods.

This includes tossing out your toxic household cleaners, soaps, personal hygiene products, air fresheners, bug sprays, lawn pesticides and insecticides, just to name a few, and replacing them with nontoxic alternatives.

A group of scientists from Southeast University and Changzhou No. 7 People’s Hospital in China recently published a study10 about the role of plastics in our environment and how long-term exposure affects our health. They found that high concentrations of nanoplastic particles reduced the life span of roundworms.

They believe that different levels of exposure may have effects on locomotion and immune response, indicating that nanopolystyrene is likely toxic to all types of organisms.

“Our results highlight the potential of long-term nanopolystyrene exposure in reducing longevity and in affecting health state during the aging process in environmental organisms,” they wrote. Next week I will post my interview with leading researcher James Clement on his book, “The Switch,” that will go into far more fascinating details on this topic.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2019/12/24/10-ways-to-live-longer.aspx

Why Is the Celery Juice Trend Exploding?

The celery juice phenomenon is often attributed to Anthony William, who considers himself the originator of the Global Celery Juice Movement.1 The movement has received both social media and major media attention in The New York Times2 and LA Times3 among others.

You can easily grow your own organic celery at home when you keep it cool, give it an unfailing supply of water and plant it in good soil.4 It’s important to choose organically grown celery as it’s one of the more contaminated vegetables available at the grocery store.

Choose Organic Celery for Your Table

Each year the Environmental Working Group (EWG),5 a nonprofit organization aimed at protecting health and the environment, publishes a guide to pesticides in produce. This document is called “The Dirty Dozen;” celery usually makes an appearance on the list.

In 2012, it was No. 2 on the list and the one most likely to contain multiple pesticides, with 96% of the samples testing positive and nearly 90% retaining more than one pesticide.6 By 2019, celery had dropped to number 11, having been overtaken by strawberries, spinach and kale.7

Before testing the fruits and vegetables, the produce was washed and peeled as consumers may be expected to at home.8 The Shopper’s Guide, which the EWG has published since 2004, ranks contamination in 47 fruits and vegetables based on more than 40,900 samples.9 Carla Burns, EWG Research Analyst, commented:10

“The main route of pesticide exposure for most Americans who do not live or work on or near farms is through their diet. Studies have shown that eating fruits and vegetables free of pesticides benefits health, and this is especially important for pregnant women and children.”

The American Academy of Pediatrics11 emphasizes children’s exposure should be limited. Pesticide exposure is linked with poor mental development, pervasive developmental disorders and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Their data also suggest an association with physical birth defects, fetal death and neurodevelopmental effects.

The EWG evaluated the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s tests, which found 225 different pesticides on fruits and vegetables.12 Dr. Philip Landrigan is director of the Global Public Health Initiative at Boston College and one of the writers of the 1993 National Academy of Sciences study, “Pesticides in the Diets of Infants and Children.”13

He underscores the implications of pesticide exposure and stresses that when possible, steps should be taken to lower a child’s exposure while continuing to offer a diet full of fresh produce.14

The dangers of pesticide exposure continue into adulthood. The Pesticide Action Network reports long-term toxicity at low doses has been associated with Parkinson’s disease, depression, anxiety, asthma and certain cancers.15

Celery Juice Trending: Rising Cost Is a Perfect Storm

Michael Karsch is the CEO of a New York chain of juice bars, Juice Press,16,17and he tracks juice trends. In 2018 he noticed a rise in celery juice interest and decided to offer a 12-ounce, one ingredient drink for $7. Karsch spoke to The New York Times about the shortage and his take on the future, saying:18

“Within a few days, it was our third best selling beverage, which is astonishing for a one-ingredient offering. I have been historically unimpressed by celery. It’s not vibrant. It’s got a ton of water and a ton of a fiber … Three months ago where we couldn’t provide enough celery juice for about 4 days … Five years ago it was organic almonds, there was kale maybe 7 years ago. Usually what happens is it corrects.”

Vandana Sheth,19 spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, finds these trends are often driven by social media and may be enticing because she believes many people are looking for a quick fix for their health.

She noted moving back and forth between different trending eating plans may be dangerous, and said:20 “I’m seeing a lot more of a disordered way of eating in my practice. It’s not sustainable long-term.”

Sammy Duda,21 senior vice president of Duda Farm Fresh Foods, one of the largest celery growers in the world, spoke to The New York Times about his family’s familiarity with the supply and demand issue when celebrities endorse a specific type of vegetable juice. Out of 10 items listed on their products page, three of those are packaged celery and one is fresh celery.22

The cost not only is affected by demand from the juice trend, but also by the weather. The New York Times23 reports a warm, dry fall in Palm Beach, Florida, where some of the crop is grown, and a cold, wet winter on the west coast where other fields are located, have affected growth and harvest.

The crop on Duda Farm was also impacted by a soil-borne disease, which together added up to a shorter than normal supply in an environment with a greater than normal demand.

Phytonutrients Promote Health Benefits

Although there’s been a push to promote celery as a cure for many different health conditions, scientific evidence supports a more limited number. One cup of raw celery contains 40% of your daily value of vitamin K.24 In addition to this it contains 11% of your daily value of molybdenum,25 a trace mineral your body uses for the detoxification of heavy metals.

Some of the larger threats from heavy metal are associated with cadmium, mercury, arsenic and lead.26 Long-term exposure may result in neurological damage, skin cancers, kidney damage and bone fractures.

Toxicity will depend on several factors including the route of exposure and duration.27 You can read more about how molybdenum functions in heavy metal detoxification in my past article, “The Three Pillars of Heavy Metal Detoxification.”

Celery also contains measurable amounts of folate, potassium and vitamin B2. Celery stalks are a great source of antioxidants, phytosterols, flavanols and flavones, many of which provide anti-inflammatory benefits.28 But, one of the more advantageous compounds found in celery may be apigenin, gaining interest for its potential to fight cancer.29

Apigenin is a flavonoid found in several fruits and vegetables and some Chinese medicinal herbs. It has strong anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and antiviral properties and is now being reported as subduing different forms of cancer. This has been found in vitro and in vivo by initiating apoptosis and autophagy, as well as stimulating an immune response.30

Apigenin is associated with stimulating the growth of nerve cells. One animal study demonstrated learning and memory improvements when apigenin was injected or taken orally.31 Studies have also linked apigenin with activating AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) in human skin cells.

The results suggest that “one of the mechanisms by which apigenin exerts its chemoprotective action may be through activation of AMPK and induction of autophagy in human keratinocytes.”32 In another published study, scientists looked at the anticarcinogenic properties on the regulation of oxidative stress and DNA damage. They wrote:33

“One of the most well-recognized mechanisms of apigenin is the capability to promote cell cycle arrest and induction of apoptosis through the p53-related pathway. A further role of apigenin in chemoprevention is the induction of autophagy in several human cancer cell lines.”

Large Amounts May Interfere With Kidney Function

Although not high in oxalates, celery has between 11 and 20 mg for every 3 1/2 ounces of the vegetable. Oxalates are found in plant and animal foods with some of the more concentrated sources including spinach, almonds and beet greens.34 Oxalates are related to kidney stone formation and calcium absorption.

Your gut bacteria play a role in how available oxalate will be for absorption. A combination of oxalate and nonoxalate-containing foods will also impact how much soluble oxalate gets absorbed from the digestive tract.35

Calcium oxalate kidney stones are among the more common types of stones. However, it’s not high amounts of calcium that cause the stones but, rather, oxalate.36 Oxalates are compounds that protect plants from predators.37 The oxalic acid binds with calcium to make it less bioavailable and insoluble, increasing the risk of kidney stones.

Oxalates are broken down by gut bacteria, but when your microbiota are compromised the compounds enter the bloodstream and get stored in the kidneys. While 11 to 20 mg of oxalate in one 3 1/2-ounce serving of celery is minor, drinking 16 ounces of celery juice each day may not be.

One 16-ounce glass of celery juice requires one large bunch of celery,38 which often contains 10 stalks39 and weighs about 16 ounces or more.40 Drinking this much celery juice is roughly equivalent to 90 mg of oxalates every day. In addition to other foods, including chocolate, berries, nuts, legumes and grains,41this may increase your risk for kidney stones.

Soothing Chamomile Tea — An Option With Similar Benefits

Herbal teas are a rich source of polyphenols and flavonoids with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. One of the most soothing is chamomile tea, belonging to the Asteraceae family42 containing a large number of herbs, shrubs and trees.43

In addition to being used as a tea, chamomile has been praised for many health benefits, including those in the volatile oils found in the flowers. One of the major constituents in the flower is apigenin, primarily found as a glycoside.44

Adults can use the volatile oils from the flower in a bath, as a cream for flaky skin, as an inhalant or tincture to relieve menstrual cramps and to improve sleep. For more information about the benefits of chamomile and how to make a tincture at home, see my past article, “What Are the Benefits of Chamomile?


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2019/09/23/celery-juice-benefits.aspx

Cholesterol does not cause heart disease

For the past six decades, the U.S. dietary advice has warned against eating cholesterol-rich foods, claiming dietary cholesterol promotes arterial plaque formation that leads to heart disease. We now have overwhelming evidence to the contrary, yet dogmatic thinking can be persistent, to say the least.

After decades’ worth of research failed to demonstrate a correlation between dietary cholesterol and heart disease, the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans1,2 finally addressed this scientific shortcoming, announcing “cholesterol is not considered a nutrient of concern for overconsumption.”

To this day, the evidence keeps mounting, showing there’s no link between the two. Similarly, the evidence supporting the use of cholesterol-lowering statin drugs to lower your risk of heart disease is slim to none, and is likely little more than the manufactured work of statin makers — at least that’s the implied conclusion of a scientific review3 published in the Expert Review of Clinical Pharmacology in 2018.

Cholesterol myth kept alive by statin advocates?

The 2018 review4 identified significant flaws in three recent studies “published by statin advocates” attempting “to validate the current dogma.” The paper presents substantial evidence that total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol levels are not an indication of heart disease risk, and that statin treatment is of “doubtful benefit” as a form of primary prevention for this reason. According to the authors:5

“According to the British-Austrian philosopher Karl Popper, a theory in the empirical sciences can never be proven, but it can be shown to be false. If it cannot be falsified, it is not a scientific hypothesis. In the following, we have followed Popper’s principle to see whether it is possible to falsify the cholesterol hypothesis.

We have also assessed whether the conclusions from three recent reviews by its supporters are based on an accurate and comprehensive review of the research on lipids and cardiovascular disease (CVD) …

Our search for falsifications of the cholesterol hypothesis confirms that it is unable to satisfy any of the Bradford Hill criteria for causality and that the conclusions of the authors of the three reviews are based on misleading statistics, exclusion of unsuccessful trials and by ignoring numerous contradictory observations.”

As reported by Reason.com:6

“A comprehensive new study on cholesterol, based on results from more than a million patients, could help upend decades of government advice about diet, nutrition, health, prevention, and medication …

The study … centers on statins, a class of drugs used to lower levels of LDL-C, the so-called ‘bad’ cholesterol, in the human body. According to the study, statins are pointless for most people …

The study also reports that ‘heart attack patients were shown to have lower than normal cholesterol levels of LDL-C’ and that older people with higher levels of bad cholesterol tend to live longer than those with lower levels.

No evidence cholesterol influences heart disease risk

Indeed, the authors of the Expert Review of Clinical Pharmacology analysis point out that were high total cholesterol in fact a major cause of atherosclerosis, “there should be exposure-response in cholesterol-lowering drug trials.”7 In other words, patients whose total cholesterol is lowered the most should also see the greatest benefit. Alas, that’s not the case.

A review of 16 relevant cholesterol-lowering trials (studies in which exposure-response was actually calculated), showed this kind of exposure-response was not detected in 15 of them. What’s more, the researchers point out that the only study8 showing a positive exposure-response to lowered cholesterol used exercise-only as the treatment.

Patients with high total cholesterol should also be at increased risk of death from CVD, but the researchers found no evidence of this either, not-so-subtly pointing out that this is “an idea supported by fraudulent reviews of the literature.” They provide the following example of how research has been misrepresented:9

“The hypothesis that high TC [total cholesterol] causes CVD was introduced in the 1960s by the authors of the Framingham Heart Study. However, in their 30-year follow-up study published in 1987, the authors reported that ‘For each 1 mg/dl drop in TC per year, there was an eleven percent increase in coronary and total mortality’.

Three years later, the American Heart Association and the U.S. National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute published a joint summary concluding, ‘a one percent reduction in an individual’s TC results in an approximate two percent reduction in CHD risk’. The authors fraudulently referred to the Framingham publication to support this widely quoted false conclusion.”

Contradictory findings routinely ignored or misrepresented

To determine whether the three reviews under analysis had misrepresented previous findings, they scoured the three papers for quotations from 12 studies reporting results “discordant with the cholesterol hypothesis.” Only one of the three reviews had quoted articles correctly, and even then, only two of the dozen studies were quoted correctly.10

“About half of the contradictory articles were ignored. In the rest, statistically nonsignificant findings in favor of the cholesterol hypothesis were inflated, and unsupportive results were quoted as if they were supportive. Only one of the six randomized cholesterol-lowering trials with a negative outcome was cited and only in one of the reviews.”

The researchers also highlight a large meta-analysis that simply ignored “at least a dozen studies” in which no or inverse association was shown. Overall, the Expert Review of Clinical Pharmacology analysis found that “the association between total cholesterol and CVD is weak, absent or inverse in many studies.”

No link between LDL and heart disease either

The Expert Review of Clinical Pharmacology paper11 also tears apart claims that high LDL causes atherosclerosis and/or CVD. Just as with total cholesterol, if high LDL was in fact responsible for atherosclerosis, then patients with high LDL would be diagnosed with atherosclerosis more frequently, yet they’re not, and those with the highest levels would have the greatest severity of atherosclerosis, yet they don’t.

The researchers cite studies showing “no association” between LDL and coronary calcification or degree of atherosclerosis. Ditto for LDL and CVD. In fact, a study looking at nearly 140,000 patients with acute myocardial infarctionfound them to have lower than normal LDL at the time of admission.

Even more telling, another study, which had originally reported similar findings, still went ahead and lowered the patients’ LDL even more. At follow-up three years later, they discovered that patients with an LDL level below 105 mg/dl (2 mmol/L) had double the mortality rate of those with higher LDL.12

Interestingly, the authors suggest this inverse relationship may be due to low LDL increasing your risk for infectious diseases and cancer, both of which are common killers.

They also review evidence showing older people with high LDL do not die prematurely — they actually live the longest, outliving both those with untreated low LDL and those on statin treatment. One such study13,14 — a meta-analysis of 19 studies — found 92% of individuals with high cholesterol lived longer.

Benefits of statin treatment are overblown

Lastly, the Expert Review of Clinical Pharmacology paper analyzes statin claims, showing how studies exaggerate benefits through a variety of different tactics. Again, in some cases, by simply excluding unsuccessful trials.

“Furthermore, the most important outcome — an increase of life expectancy — has never been mentioned in any cholesterol-lowering trial, but as calculated recently by Kristensen et al.,15 statin treatment does not prolong lifespan by more than an average of a few days,” the authors state.16

Indeed, the study they’re referring to, published in BMJ Open in 2015, which looked at 11 studies with a follow-up between two and 6.1 years, found “Death was postponed between -5 and 19 days in primary prevention trials and between -10 and 27 days in secondary prevention trials.” The median postponement of death in primary prevention trials was 3.2 days, and in secondary prevention trials 4.1 days!

Considering the well-documented health risks associated with statins, this is a mind-bending finding that really should upend the dogma. And yet, the dogma remains, and may even strengthen in coming days.

JAMA editorial calls for end to ‘fake news’ about statins

The cholesterol myth has been a boon to the pharmaceutical industry, as cholesterol-lowering statins — often prescribed as a primary prevention against heart attack and stroke — have become one of the most frequently used drugs on the market. In 2012-2013, 27.8% of American adults over the age of 40 reported using a statin, up from 17.9% a decade earlier.17,18 But that was six years ago, I suspect over a third of adults over the age of 40 are now using statins.

In addition to the BMJ Open study cited above, an evidence report19 by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, published November 2016 in JAMA, found 250 people need to take a statin for one to six years to prevent a single death from any cause; 233 had to take a statin for two to six years to prevent a single cardiovascular death specifically. To prevent a single cardiovascular event in people younger than 70, 94 individuals would have to take a statin.

As noted in a 2015 report,20 “statistical deception created the appearance that statins are safe and effective in primary and secondary prevention of cardiovascular disease.” The paper points out that by using a statistical tool known as relative risk reduction, the trivial benefits of statins appear greatly amplified.

Scientific findings such as these are the core reason why statins are given negative press. However, we may soon see a reversal in the news cycle, with negative statin articles being tagged as “fake news.”

According to a June 2019 editorial21 in JAMA Cardiology, written by cardiologist Ann Marie Navar,22 statins are the victim of “fear-based medical information,” just like vaccines, and this is what’s driving patient nonadherence. Cardiovascular Business reported:23

“We know that what people read influences their actions, Navar said, and indeed, one 2016 study in the European Heart Journal found that on a population level, statin discontinuation increased after negative news stories about statins surfaced in those communities.

In another study, more than one in three heart patients said they declined a statin prescription solely for fears of adverse effects. ‘Measles outbreaks are highly visible: a rash appears, public health agencies respond, headlines are made and the medical community responds vocally,’ Navar wrote.

‘In contrast, when a patient who has refused a statin because of concerns stoked by false information has an MI, the result is less visible. Nevertheless, cardiologists and primary care physicians observe the smoldering outbreak of statin refusal daily.’”

Cardiovascular Business summarizes Navar’s suggestions for how doctors can fight back against false information about statins and build adherence, such as handing out yearlong prescriptions with automatic refills.24

When I first wrote about the censorship of anti-vaccine material occurring on every single online platform, I warned that this censorship would not stop at vaccines. And here we’re already seeing the call for censoring anti-statin information by glibly labeling it all “fake news.”

Chances are, the censoring of anti-statin information is already underway. A quick Google search for “statin side effects” garnered pages worth of links talking about minor risks, the benefits of statins, comparison articles, looking at two different brands — in other words, mostly positive news.

The scientific fact is, aside from being a “waste of time” and not doing anything to reduce mortality, statins also come with a long list of potential side effects and clinical challenges, including:

An increased risk for diabetes
Decreased heart function25
Nutrient depletions — Including CoQ10 and vitamin K2, both of which are important for cardiovascular and heart health
Impaired fertility — Importantly, statins are a Category X medication,26meaning they cause serious birth defects,27 so they should never be used by a pregnant woman or women planning a pregnancy
Increased risk of cancer — Long-term statin use (10 years or longer) more than doubles women’s risk of two major types of breast cancer: invasive ductal carcinoma and invasive lobular carcinoma28
Nerve damage — Research has shown statin treatment lasting longer than two years causes “definite damage to peripheral nerves”29

How to assess your heart disease risk

cholesterol levels

>>>>> Click Here <<<<<

As a general rule, cholesterol-lowering drugs are not required or prudent for the majority of people — especially if both high cholesterol and longevity run in your family. Remember, the evidence overwhelmingly suggests your overall cholesterol level has little to nothing to do with your risk for heart disease.

For more information about cholesterol and what the different levels mean, take a look at the infographic above. You can also learn more about the benefits of cholesterol, and why you don’t want your level to be too low, in “Cholesterol Plays Key Role in Cell Signaling.” As for evaluating your heart disease risk, the following tests will provide you with a more accurate picture of your risk:

HDL/Cholesterol ratio — HDL percentage is a very potent heart disease risk factor. Just divide your HDL level by your total cholesterol. That percentage should ideally be above 24%.
Triglyceride/HDL ratio — You can also do the same thing with your triglycerides and HDL ratio. That percentage should be below 2.
NMR LipoProfile Large LDL particles do not appear to be harmful. Only small dense LDL particles can potentially be a problem, as they can squeeze through the lining of your arteries. If they oxidize, they can cause damage and inflammation.

Some groups, such as the National Lipid Association, are now starting to shift the focus toward LDL particle number instead of total and LDL cholesterol to better assess your heart disease risk. Once you know your particle size numbers, you and your doctor can develop a more customized program to help manage your risk.

Your fasting insulin level — Heart disease is primarily rooted in insulin resistance,30 which is the result of a high-sugar diet. Sugar, not cholesterol or saturated fat, is the primary driver. Clinical trials have shown high fructose corn syrup can trigger risk factors for cardiovascular disease within as little as two weeks.31

Any meal or snack high in carbohydrates like fructose and refined grains generates a rapid rise in blood glucose and then insulin to compensate for the rise in blood sugar.

The insulin released from eating too many carbs promotes fat accumulation and makes it more difficult for your body to shed excess weight. Excess fat, particularly around your belly, is one of the major contributors to heart disease.

Your fasting blood sugar level — Research has shown people with a fasting blood sugar level of 100 to 125 mg/dl have a nearly 300% increased higher risk of coronary heart disease than people with a level below 79 mg/dl.32,33
Your iron level — Iron can be a very potent oxidative stress, so if you have excess iron levels you can damage your blood vessels and increase your risk of heart disease. Ideally, you should monitor your ferritin levels and make sure they are not much above 80 ng/ml.

The simplest way to lower them if they are elevated is to donate your blood. If that is not possible you can have a therapeutic phlebotomy and that will effectively eliminate the excess iron from your body.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2019/07/24/cholesterol-myth-what-really-causes-heart-disease.aspx

Strange Bedfellows: GMO and Vaccine Partnerships

By Dr. Mercola

Over the years, I’ve written a number of articles outing industry front groups1such as the Genetic Literacy Project, the American Council for Science and Health (ACSH),2 Science 2.0, GMO Answers, Independent Women’s Forum, Science Codex, Center for Consumer Freedom and the Center for Inquiry.

Once you start to investigate these front groups, you’ll find the same names appearing again and again, cowriting articles, interviewing each other and referring to each other’s work in a closed loop.

I’ve also written about academics and journalists who, while presenting themselves as independent experts, are actually shills for industry. This is a fairly close-knit group of individuals, so the worst actors are not hard to identify based on their associations.

Well-established actors include Forbes contributor Kavin Senapathy,3 Henry Miller, Steven Salzberg,4 Bruce Chassy, Jon Entine,5,6 Kevin Folta, Keith Kloor7and Mark Lynas.

Learn to Recognize Astroturfing When You See It

In the TED Talk above, award-winning investigative journalist Sharyl Attkisson discusses strategies used by industry to manipulate public opinion and steer online discussion.

A strategy that has become phenomenally popular with the advent of social media is astroturfing, which is when a special interests group creates a fake grassroots campaign for or against a particular agenda. You might think it’s a group of moms devoted to children’s health that is touting the benefits of GMOs or vaccines, for example, when in fact the campaign is run by industry.

Increasingly over the past year or so you may have seen a number of articles simultaneously criticizing both the “anti-vaxxers” and “anti-GMO movement,” making contemptuous and sometimes wildly insulting comments about people who question the safety of either of these industries and their wares.

While GMOs and vaccines may seem like strange bedfellows, the cross-linking of these two industries in propaganda material is neither accidental nor haphazard.

Industry Messaging Example

In a May 18, 2017 Forbes article,8 Senapathy (one well-known mouthpiece for the GMO industry) took aim at the “anti-vaccine and anti-GMO movements,” saying they’re “inextricably linked and cause preventable suffering.”

“The thoroughly answered question of whether vaccines cause autism isn’t really a question outside of conspiracy-theorist circles,” Senapathy writes.

“The body of evidence shows that vaccination has … vastly reduced suffering and death … and that vaccines don’t cause autism, cancer, dementia or long term health problems, and that any minute risk is vastly outweighed by benefits to individuals and society.

Yet with the backing of prominent leaders like Robert DeNiro and Robert Kennedy Jr., anti-vaccine groups fuel common narratives that keep herd immunity down, directly leading to suffering and death.

Now with Donald Trump embracing vaccine skeptics, the anti-vaccine movement has earned a hallowed place on the shelf next to other tinfoil hat clad schools of thought.

The question of the safety of genetically engineered crops (GMOs) has been answered just as thoroughly, and the anti-GMO movement deserves its own place on the same shelf, not just for being wrong but for its role in unconscionable suffering …

She goes on to point out how similar the communication tactics are between vaccine and GMO detractors. Ironically, her article reveals just as much if not more about the biotech and vaccine industries’ messaging tactics. You can go through her article and check off numerous boxes for how to spot a piece of industry propaganda.

That includes the claim that the science is settled (which automatically precludes the need for further discussion), citing a fellow industry shill (in this case Kloor), using strong, derogatory language when describing those who disagree with industry talking points, making ample references to “conspiracy theories” and “other tinfoil hat clad schools of thought.”

Seven Classic Propaganda Techniques

Whenever you hear or read that someone is a “quack,” and that “the science has been settled,” or that something is “science-based,” it’s probably a smear campaign created by an astroturf group, industry front group or paid shill. In fact, the seven techniques of propaganda have been clearly delineated and are used without exception by most industries. As noted by writer Morgan Crouch in his article, “What Are the Seven Techniques of Propaganda?” these include:9

  1. Name calling — Derogatory terms or discriminatory words used to arouse suspicion and prejudice
  2. Glittering generalities — Slogans, catchphrases and highly generalized statements that sound good but mean little and prove nothing (such as “the science is settled”)
  3. Transfer — The linking of a company/industry idea with a revered symbol
  4. Testimonial — Testimony by a respected authority, similar to celebrity endorsement
  5. Plain folks — Corporate material presented by someone who appears to be “just like you” — someone who shares your concerns and ideals
  6. Bandwagon — Creating the illusion that there’s a consensus, which capitalizes on people’s inherent desire to be on the “right” side
  7. Card stacking — Using only those facts that support the company’s/industry’s ideas, with the aim of making you assume these facts are conclusive. As noted by Crouch, “By ‘stacking cards against the truth,’ propagandists can control the beliefs of their audience”

Pesticide and Vaccine Partnerships Revealed

While Senapathy tries to show how those who question the safety of either GMOs or vaccines are all alike — that is, tinfoil hat-wearing lunatics who follow flat earth theories in their spare time — what she ultimately achieves is a perfect example of industry PR.

This systematic messaging strategy has been carefully developed, and is known to have a penetrating psychological effect. Both the vaccine and biotechnology industries use the same terminology and the same psychological assault strategies to make you feel like you’re in the wrong — or worse.

In her article, Senapathy basically accuses all vaccine and GMO safety advocates of being killers, merely for asking questions and not settling for non-answers, and doing what they think is right for their own health and that of their children.

Another article10 that connects the vaccine and chemical technology industries was recently published by The Feed.

In it, Ashleigh Morse, Ph.D., whose training centers on psychology and the influence of environmental cues on decision-making, and who says she works as a consultant to “a range of clients” in the field of science communication and public health,11 argues that juries are incapable of assessing the validity of scientific evidence presented in court, or the validity of the scientific methods used.

Specifically, Morse — whose professional credits include a single published research paper listed on her LinkedIN bio on the role of opioid processes in reward and decision-making — is referring to the recent jury verdict against Monsanto, but she goes on to link that to vaccine science. “When juries decide on the science, we get autism linked to vaccines and the Monsanto verdict,” she writes.

When In Doubt, Blame the Russians

Then there’s the curious claim that the Russians are to blame for Americans’ lack of faith in vaccine safety.12 According to a recent paper13 published in the American Journal of Public Health, Russian trolls and Soviet-directed Twitter bots promoted anti-vaccine information on social media to “amplify the vaccine debate” and create dissent in the U.S.

According to the authors, “Accounts masquerading as legitimate users create false equivalency, eroding public consensus on vaccination,” and “Directly confronting vaccine skeptics enables bots to legitimize the vaccine debate.” Those two sentences are interesting and revealing indeed.

In a nutshell, they’re saying that by providing anti-vaccine content, these bots made it seem as though there was actually something to discuss when, in the opinion of the authors, no discussion about vaccine safety should occur at all.

Apparently, it is their view that the vaccine debate is “illegitimate,” since there’s “public consensus” on vaccines (refer back to the bandwagon strategy, No. 6 in the propaganda list above).

In other words, everyone knows vaccines are safe; the science is settled, so there’s no valid reason to question it. Summing up the alleged Russian bots’ efforts to sway public opinion against vaccination, the authors referred to it as “weaponized health communication.”

The Russians Did It Again

Coincidentally, the vaccine paper above was submitted for publication shortly after news stories began circulating claiming the Russians were behind anti-GMO rhetoric.14 Minnesota Farm Living writes:15

“Researchers from Iowa State University (Shawn Dorius and Carolyn Lawrence-Dill) wanted to better understand the controversy around genetically engineered food.16 The issue is with the overwhelming belief in the science community is that GMOs are safe, consumers still question their safety. Dorius and Lawrence-Dill wanted to find out why.

What they found was surprising. The ISU researchers looked at not only how U.S. publications portrayed GMOs but also looked at the American versions of RT and Sputknik, two Russian publications. They counted how many times the term ‘GMO’ was used in different publications …

They went a step further and analyzed the tone of each article. What they found is the Russian publications were overwhelming anti-GMO. The articles talked negatively about environmental risks, nutrition concerns, and health risks of GMOs.”

Here, the author links to the “Are GMOs Safe?” page on the Genetic Literacy Project’s website as evidence to support GMO safety. But, the Genetic Literacy Project is a well-known front group for the GMO industry and hardly a reliable source of impartial information.

As for why the Russians would want to spread anti-GMO rhetoric in the U.S., the study authors note Russia has an interest in creating division among the American people to weaken the country as a whole, and to promote their own agricultural exports, as Russia banned GMOs in 2016 and is trying to increase its exports of organic food.

Claim of Scientific Consensus on GMO Safety Is Patently False

In the Minnesota Farm Living article cited above, you can see the telltale industry rhetoric in the sentence, “the overwhelming belief in the science community is that GMOs are safe, [yet] consumers still question their safety.” The reality is there is no scientific consensus on the safety of GMOs.

That is in fact the title of a scientific statement17 published in the peer-reviewed journal Environmental Sciences Europe, January 24, 2015. The statement, aptly titled “No Scientific Consensus on GMO Safety,” was signed by 300 scientists, researchers, physicians and scholars.

What’s more, the paper states that the claim of scientific consensus on GMO safety is in actuality “an artificial construct that has been falsely perpetuated,” and that such a claim “is misleading and misrepresents or outright ignores the currently available scientific evidence and the broad diversity of scientific opinions among scientists on this issue.”

In addition, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration still does not possess any evidence demonstrating safety because they do not do scientific reviews. And even if they did, hundreds of scientists say there’s no evidence demonstrating that genetically engineered foods are safe, and a number of independent studies have raised serious health concerns.

To learn more about how GMOs were introduced into the food supply without safety testing, see my two-part interview with attorney Steven Druker, author of “Altered Genes, Twisted Truth.” (Part 1, Part 2.)

GMO-Vaccine Convergence

The reason for the joining of PR forces between the vaccine and biotech industries becomes clearer when you take into account the fact that GMOs are moving into the vaccine industry. The 2016 article,18 “GMOs Lead the Fight Against Zika, Ebola and the Next Unknown Pandemic,” published in The Conversation, asserts that GMOs play a “vital role” in medicine, adding:

“Most modern biomedical advances, especially the vaccines used to eradicate disease and protect against pandemics … rely on the same molecular biology tools that are used to create genetically modified organisms.

To protect the public, scientists have embraced GMO technology to quickly study new health threats, manufacture enough protective vaccines, and monitor and even predict new outbreaks.”

Additionally, scientists are also exploring the possibility of vaccinating plants against pests as an alternative to using pesticides.19 In other words, it’s really quite crucial for these two bedfellows, strange as their joining may seem at first, to get people to embrace both genetic engineering and vaccines.

That’s why we’re now seeing more and more articles deriding both vaccine and GMO safety advocates in the same piece, whether it necessarily makes sense to do so or not.

Both of these industries are using the exact same messaging strategies — because so far they have worked — to achieve the same aim: Shame those who dare question the safety of either, and make them feel like ignorant outcasts and social misfits, thereby shutting down the conversation.

Preempting Your Rights

In my five-part “Ghost in the Machine” series, I discuss the many ways in which big industries manipulate science, and how they’ve captured our regulatory agencies and manipulate our political system. Here’s a listing of the series, in case you missed any of them:

Introduction to Ghost in the Machine — A New Article Series That Exposes How Puppet Masters Control the Planet for Their Benefit
Ghost in the Machine, Part 1 — Drug Safety and Media Shaped by Big Pharma
Ghost in the Machine, Part 2 — Success Breeds Greed That Gets in the Way of Ethics, Common Sense and Caution
Ghost in the Machine, Part 3 — Pride and the Politics of Vaccines
Ghost in the Machine, Part 4 — The War on Supplements, Essential Oils and Homeopathy
Ghost in the Machine, Part 5 — Lies, Denial, Deceit and Manipulative ‘Research’

A feature common to both the vaccine industry and the biotech industry is the use of legislation to preempt your rights and force you to use their products whether you want to or not, and without regard for the health consequences.

In recent years, I’ve written extensively about the vaccine industry’s attempts to mandate vaccines and eliminate personal belief exemptions across the U.S. In some cases, they’ve succeeded. In others, they’ve lost, but efforts to strip every American of their right to informed consent and medical freedom is ongoing.

The chemical technology industry is following the same agenda. One of the latest infringements on your rights is a provision in the Farm Bill that would block local governments from regulating pesticide use. The U.S. House committee approved the draft back in April. As noted by Jay Feldman, executive director of Beyond Pesticides:20

“This is really a backdoor attempt to interfere with state governments and local governments. I think the trend is for local governments to engage on this issue. This would undermine that.”

Monsanto Ghostwriting Shill Attempts to Tie USRTK to Russian Troll Efforts

A common corporate tactic is to use “third-party experts” to bring the industry’s message to the public under the cloak of independent opinion or expertise (No. 4, “Testimonial”). The idea is that academic types are far more credible than industry employees when it comes to defending the industry’s position.

A well-known spokesperson for the GMO industry is Henry Miller, who was thoroughly outed as a Monsanto shill during the 2012 Proposition 37 GMO labeling campaign in California. A “No on 37” advertisement had to be pulled off the air because Miller was fraudulently identified as being part of the Stanford University faculty.

Last year, Miller was outed yet again — this time as a ghostwriter for Monsanto. Forbes fired Miller when it became clear he had submitted ghostwritten material. On a relevant side note, Senapathy has cowritten articles with Miller, which is why some of her Forbes articles ended up being deleted as well,21 and the foreword for her book “Fear Babe” was written by Folta, a University of Florida professor who hid his financial ties to Monsanto.

The Freedom of Information Act Request (FOIA) discovery against Monsanto was led by U.S. Right to Know (USRTK). Proving he’s still working on Monsanto’s behalf, Miller penned a two-part article22,23 for Investor’s Business Daily this past summer, in which he tries — quite unsuccessfully — to tie USRTK to the alleged Russian GMO disinformation campaign.

The fact that they’re still turning to Miller is probably a sign of just how desperate Monsanto (now Bayer) has become. Other discovery documents obtained by USRTK included email correspondence revealing Monsanto has been quite desperate for a number of years already.

In an email dated February 26, 2015, Daniel Goldstein, senior science lead of medical sciences and outreach for Monsanto, tells Monsanto’s food safety scientific affairs lead, John Vicini, Ph.D.:24

Daniel Goldstein email

In this email, Goldstein admits two pearls: First, the list of supporters willing to do their dirty work is short — which is why we keep seeing the same names pop up in pro-GMO propaganda pieces — and ACSH is a most valuable front group for the biotech industry.

Another Undercover Ambassador for GMO Industry Wants You to Think the Russians Are Responsible for ‘Anti-Vaccine Myths’

So, who else wants you to think that “the Russians did it”? Mark Lynas, a long-term shill for the GMO industry, just published: “Opinion: Russian Campaign to Spread Anti-Vaccine Myths Part of a Wider War on Science and Truth”25 on the Alliance for Science website.

As the other examples cited above, Lynas — normally a pro-GMO advocate — is now cross-linking GMOs and vaccines, closely mimicking the core message of Senapathy’s article, which is that “Many anti-GMO groups and anti-vaxxers are closely linked.”

Again, what we’re seeing is a crossover or merging of the GMO and vaccine industries in terms of messaging and propaganda angles. Rather than fighting public doubt separately, the shills for these industries are now putting out a single joint message that anyone who doubts the science presented by either of them is an anti-science nut job.

The take-home message here is that these tactics are nothing but a PR ploy. Yes, they’re trying to make you feel like an outsider, an outcast. They’re trying to make you feel ashamed of your “ignorance,” or worse, as if you’ve fallen for false propaganda propagated by evil Russians in an effort to divide and conquer.

But all you really need to do is look for the hallmarks of astroturfing, and you’ll quickly see through their ruse. You are not wrong for questioning flawed and biased science. You are not ignorant for questioning whether vaccines and GMOs might be unsafe when there’s a clear lack of evidence to support safety claims.

You are not a danger to the public for looking at the evidence and making your own decisions about whether or not you want your family to receive a particular vaccine or eat a certain food. Your inquiries and thought processes are only dangerous to the industries in question which, by the way, are willing to go to just about any lengths to hide the dangers of their products in order to maintain their profits. Stand your ground. It’s solid.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2018/09/18/gmo-and-vaccine-partnerships.aspx

The Worst of Both Worlds — Genetically Engineered Goats to Produce New Vaccine

By Dr. Mercola

Goats are being genetically engineered to become “pharm animals” that carry vaccines in their milk.

Current experiments being conducted by researchers from Texas A&M are geared toward producing an “edible” malaria vaccine, with the ultimate goal being that children drinking the milk will become vaccinated in the process.

While claiming that bioengineered animals could be “life-savers” for people in third-world countries, the researchers ignore the glaring issue that such biotechnology often produces unknown, and unintended, health consequences that prove tragic for individuals and the environment.

Vaccines in Your Milk?

Transmogrifying farm animals into “pharm” animals to act as living and breathing pharmaceutical factories is not new.

In 2009, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the first drug produced by livestock that had been bioengineered to express a human gene.

In that case, the protein was extracted from the milk of genetically engineered (GE) goats.

In the latest instance, researchers introduced DNA coding for the malaria parasite into the goat genome linked to milk production.

The DNA is supposed to “switch on” only in the mammary gland when the goat produces milk.

As we’ve seen in the past with genetically modified plants, genetically engineered vaccine-producing animals might enter the food supply unexpectedly — exposing unintended recipients to the vaccine. Or the animals might escape and breed with others, passing these bioengineered genes on with unpredictable consequences. Even the technology itself is risky at best, because when animals are exposed to foreign DNA, literally anything can happen.

Take, for instance, milk from cows treated with a synthetic, genetically engineered growth hormone called rBGH. rBGH milk differs from natural milk nutritionally, pharmacologically, immunologically, and hormonally, and along with causing health problems in the cows, it is linked to cancer in humans. What does ingesting the DNA from the malaria parasite in your milk cause? No one knows.

Vaccine Makers See Dollar Signs When They See Third-World Countries

Malaria is caused by a parasite of the species Plasmodium, which is spread from person to person by infected mosquitoes. Every year, it results in about 1 million deaths, the majority of which are in third-world countries. We are certainly in need of a solution, and while it sounds good in theory that a child could be protected from malaria just by drinking a glass of milk, remember that vaccines often weaken and confuse children’s immune systems, which ultimately increases their susceptibility to the very infectious diseases vaccines are designed to prevent.

The most vulnerable of the world’s children are those in the poorest countries where death and disease is often a result of malnutrition, and where children are often battling some sort of infection 200 days out of the year. Vaccines can be devastating to these already immunosuppressed children, as well as to adults.

However, emerging vaccine markets like third-world countries will soon outgrow developed markets by hundreds of billions of dollars. Emerging markets are areas of the world that are beginning to show promise as a profitable venture for many products, including vaccines. And emerging markets – primarily in developing countries in Southeast and Central Asia, and Africa – have been on vaccine makers’ radar for quite some time.

Giving Immune-Compromised Children Vaccines May Create Illness, Not Cure It

One reason that vaccine makers are interested in these parts of the world is that that’s where most of the world’s deaths from major infectious diseases occur. The only problem has been that, until recently, making vaccines for undeveloped countries with no money to pay for them, was not exactly a profitable goal for vaccine makers.

Concerned that developed countries would have little or no resources for addressing serious infectious diseases if vaccine makers continued their pull-out, the World Health Organization and the G8 – the top developed countries in the world – responded with a plan for inducing vaccine companies to stay in the business.

That plan was called Advance Market Commitments (AMCs). Under AMCs, developed countries make legal, binding agreements to purchase vaccines that are needed in low-income countries. The purchase guarantees a bottom line for the manufacturers. In return, the manufacturers promise to sell those vaccines at reduced prices in the countries where they are most needed.

Unfortunately, legally binding, advance market commitments to purchase vaccines that are mostly needed in third world countries could backfire on developed countries that don’t need – or want – certain vaccines. Malaria is one of the top neglected diseases that world health leaders want to address with AMCs, so the GM vaccine-producing goat milk might already be on their radar.

The ability to resist diseases like malaria requires a strong immune system, and for that, you require good nutrition, clean drinking water, and sanitation. If we want to help people in other countries to lower their malaria rates, it would be wise to focus on these basics first. In order to eradicate infectious disease from a nation, you have to first address compromised immune systems. If you hit immune suppressed children with a potent, adjuvant-loaded vaccine, you’re far more likely to create new disease, not eradicate it.

It’s similar to the corporations seeking to plant genetically modified golden rice in the developing world to purportedly alleviate vitamin A deficiency. What people in the developing world need to receive ample dietary vitamin A are the basics like access to a diverse range of nutritious foods — including animal products like eggs, cheese and meat and vegetables such as dark leafy greens and sweet potatoes. This is the type of diet that is attained from biodiverse farming — the opposite of what will occur if golden rice is planted on a large scale. So in the end it appears the golden rice will do little to improve vitamin A levels in the poor — and may actually make vitamin A deficiency worse.

Fertility Problems, DNA Damage Among the Serious Health Problems Linked to GM Foods

The vaccine-producing GM goats are a double-edged sword because while no one knows for sure what consuming GM vaccine-containing milk will do to humans, there’s very convincing evidence that genetically modified foods spell nothing but trouble for your health.

In one review of genetically modified organisms (GMO) — an analysis of 19 animal studies — it was revealed that nearly 10 percent of blood, urine, organ and other parameters tested were significantly influenced by GMOs, with the liver and kidneys faring the worst.

In the only human feeding study ever published on genetically modified foods, seven volunteers ate Roundup-ready soybeans. These are soybeans that have herbicide-resistant genes inserted into them in order to survive being sprayed with otherwise deadly doses of Roundup herbicide. In three of the seven volunteers, the gene inserted into the soy transferred into the DNA of their intestinal bacteria, and continued to function long after they stopped eating the GM soy!

So, exposing children in third world countries to these potential risks needs to be carefully considered before a malaria vaccine is distributed in GM milk especially when there are other innovative ways of fighting malaria available. In addition, Jeffrey Smith, founder of the Institute for Responsible Technology, has documented at least 65 serious health risks from GM products of all kinds. Among them:

  • Offspring of rats fed GM soy showed a five-fold increase in mortality, lower birth weights, and the inability to reproduce
  • Male mice fed GM soy had damaged young sperm cells
  • The embryo offspring of GM soy-fed mice had altered DNA functioning
  • Several US farmers reported sterility or fertility problems among pigs and cows fed on GM corn varieties
  • Investigators in India have documented fertility problems, abortions, premature births, and other serious health issues, including deaths, among buffaloes fed GM cottonseed products

Why We MUST Insist on Mandatory Labeling of GM Foods

Mandatory labeling may be the only way to stop the proliferation of GM foods in the US because while GM seeds are banned in several European countries, in the U.S., certain states are actually passing legislation that protects the use of GM seeds and allows for unabated expansion! At present, no less than 14 states have passed such legislation. Michigan’s Senate Bill 7771, if passed, would make that 15. The Michigan bill would prevent anti-GMO laws, and would remove “any authority local governments may have to adopt and enforce ordinances that prohibit or regulate the labeling, sale, storage, transportation, distribution, use, or planting of agricultural, vegetable, flower or forest tree seeds.”

While legislation like this sounds like crazy nonsense to most people, such bills are essentially bought and paid for through the millions of dollars Monsanto and other biotech companies spend lobbying the US government each year. In the first quarter of 2011 alone, Monsanto spent $1.4 million on lobbying the federal government — a drop from a year earlier, when they spent $2.5 million during the same quarter.

Their efforts of persuasion are also made infinitely easier by the fact that an ever growing list of former Monsanto employees are now in positions of power within the federal government.

Monsanto Employees in Federal Government

Proof Positive that GMO Labeling WILL Change the Food Industry

Many don’t fully appreciate the strategy of seeking to have genetically engineered foods labeled in California. The belief is that large companies would refuse to have dual labeling; one for California and another for the rest of the country. It would be very expensive and a logistical nightmare. So rather than have two labels, they would simply not carry the product, especially if the new label would be the equivalent of a skull and crossbones. This is why we are so committed to this initiative as victory here will likely eliminate genetically engineered foods from the US.

Powerful confirmation of this belief occurred in early 2012 when both Coca-Cola Company and PepsiCo Inc. chose to alter one of their soda ingredients as a result of California’s labeling requirements for carcinogens2:

“Coca-Cola Co. and PepsiCo Inc. are changing the way they make the caramel coloring used in their sodas as a result of a California law that mandates drinks containing a certain level of carcinogens bear a cancer warning label. The companies said the changes will be expanded nationally to streamline their manufacturing processes. They’ve already been made for drinks sold in California.”

This is a PERFECT example of the national impact a California GMO labeling mandate can, and no doubt WILL, have. While California is the only state requiring the label to state that the product contains the offending ingredient, these companies are switching their formula for the entire US market, rather than have two different labels. According to USA Today:

“A representative for Coca-Cola, Diana Garza Ciarlante, said the company directed its caramel suppliers to modify their manufacturing processes to reduce the levels of the chemical 4-methylimidazole, which can be formed during the cooking process and as a result may be found in trace amounts in many foods. “While we believe that there is no public health risk that justifies any such change, we did ask our caramel suppliers to take this step so that our products would not be subject to the requirement of a scientifically unfounded warning,” Garza-Giarlante said in an email.”

Learn More about Genetically Modified (GM) Foods

Due to lack of labeling, many Americans are still unfamiliar with what GM foods are. We have a plan to change that, and I urge you to participate and to continue learning more about GM foods and helping your friends and family do the same.

To start, please print out and use the Non-GMO Shopping Guide, created by the Institute for Responsible Technology. Share it with your friends and family, and post it to your social networks. You can also download a free iPhone application, available in the iTunes store. You can find it by searching for ShopNoGMO in the applications.

Your BEST strategy, however, is to simply buy USDA 100% Organic products whenever possible, (as these do not permit GM ingredients) or buy whole fresh produce and meat from local farmers. The majority of the GMO’s you’re exposed to are via processed foods, so by cooking from scratch with whole foods, you can be sure you’re not inadvertently consuming something laced with GM ingredients. When you do purchase processed food, avoid products containing anything related to corn or soy that are not 100 percent organic, as any foods containing these two non-organic ingredients are virtually guaranteed to contain genetically engineered ingredients, as well as toxic herbicide residues.

To learn more about GM foods, I highly recommend the following films and lectures:


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/03/20/genetically-engineered-goats-produce-vaccine.aspx

Another Way to Kill Small U.S. Farmers: Seize Their Bank Accounts on Phony Charges

By Dr. Mercola

In its latest move against small farmers who dare to operate outside the umbrella of CAFOs (confined animal feeding operations) and Monsanto-dominated crops, the U.S. government has seized $70,000 from a small dairy farmer in Maryland. The feds did this under the “Bank Secrecy Act,” which requires that paperwork be filled out for any cash deposit in excess of $10,000.

The farmers, Randy Sowers and his wife Karen, made deposits totaling more than $295,000 from May 2011 to February 2012, but each transaction was less than $10,000.

Now they are being accused of “structuring,” a violation of federal currency reporting requirements, as the feds are accusing them of deliberately depositing money in increments of less than $10,000 in an attempt to evade Currency Transaction Reporting requirements.

Government Seizes $70,000 On What Grounds?

The dairy farmer’s “crime” stems from his weekly sales at local farmers’ markets. The sales averaged about the same amount each week and, dutifully, the Sowers deposited them. They’d reportedly never even heard of the Bank Secrecy Act or “structuring,” but that was of no interest to the feds—the consistency of the amount the Sowers deposited, always less than $10,000, raised red flags to the feds, who claimed that this was indicative of a crime.

The government promptly seized about $70,000 from the bank account, then issued a warrant for the seizures. As reported by Food Freedom News:1

“The Dept. of Justice has since sued to keep $63,000 of the Sowers’ money, though they committed no crime other than maintaining their privacy. Without funds, they will be unable to make purchases for the spring planting. When a similar action was taken against Taylor’s Produce Stand last year, the feds seized $90,000, dropped the charges, and kept $45,000 of Taylor’s money.

Knowing that most farms operate on a very thin margin, such abuse of power wipes out a family’s income, and for a bonus, the feds enhance the monopoly power of Monsanto, Big Dairy and their supply chain.… Former Maryland assistant U.S. attorney Steven Levin told the paper [City Paper], “The emphasis is on basically seizing money, whether it is legally or illegally earned. It can lead to financial ruin for business owners, and there’s a potential for abuse here by the government.””

The raid on the Sowers was conducted by an agency created in 2009 to go after money-laundering criminals. The agency started out with a bang by seizing $1.2 billion from a real money launderer, but it appears that what it’s interested in now is making criminals out of small business persons, including small farmers.

Why Are Family Farms Under Attack?

 

 

If they’re not seizing bank accounts, it seems the government will find other ways to attack small farmers. A family farm in rural Michigan—and possibly others—may be shut down by a new state law that designates certain breeds of hogs as a threat to neighboring hog breeders and croplands.

Basically, the fight is over the definition of feral hogs vs. domestic hogs. The dictionary definition of “feral” refers to an animal running wild. But Michigan authorities have taken it a step further and extended the definition to include enclosed private hunting preserves and small farms that house what authorities call an “invasive species” of hogs.

There is no genetic test to determine whether the species on these farms are truly invasive, so authorities are basing their cases against these farmers solely on visual observations. The Michigan Department of Natural Resources (MDNR) uses this vague description to describe the prohibited hogs, and makes it clear that this does notapply to the domestic hogs raised on CAFOs:2

“Wild boar, wild hog, wild swine, feral pig, feral hog, feral swine, Old world swine, razorback, eurasian wild boar, Russian wild boar (Sus scrofa Linnaeus). This subsection does not and is not intended to affect sus domestica involved in domestic hog production.”

Other descriptions supplied by the MDNR include such a wide variety of characteristics that virtually any pig other than the familiar pink domestic breed raised on CAFOs could potentially be deemed “feral”:

  • Erect or folded/floppy ear structure
  • Straight or curly tail
  • Solid black, wild/grizzled, solid red/brown, black and white spotted, or black and red/brown spotted coat colorations
  • “Other characteristics” not currently known to the MDNR

Interestingly, the Big Pork industry has been planning this anti-feral pig campaign for years, and even bragged about it in a 2010 newsletter.3 It was the same newsletter where they declared a win against the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) in Ohio, where HSUS was seeking legislation to end the practice of sow gestation stalls (cages so small the sow can’t turn around or move).

What this means for residents of Michigan is that soon they will be unable to purchase sustainably and humanely grown meat from the Mangalitsa “wooly” hogs raised on Baker’s Green Acres farm. This particular breed is being raised by only a handful of small farms across the country; whereas more than 2 million pigs are slaughtered each week in the United States, only about 50 of them are Mangalitsas (which have been called the “it” pig by the New York Times, as several high-end restaurants and specialty markets have featured the rich, naturally raised meat4).

But, of course, this issue is about much more than pasture-raised pork from a heritage breed … it’s about your ability, your right, to purchase and consume pure, unadulterated food – a right that continues to be threated for those living in the United States.

FDA Also Threatens Your Right to Food Choice …

Another glaring example of government going out of its way to prohibit your access to pure, unprocessed food is the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) war against raw milk. When the Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund (FTCLDF) filed a lawsuit against the FDA over their raw milk ban, stating that banning raw milk in interstate commerce is unconstitutional, the FDA rebutted with the following extremely concerning and outrageous statements:

  • “There is no absolute right to consume or feed children any particular food.”
  • “There is no ‘deeply rooted’ historical tradition of unfettered access to foods of all kinds.”
  • “Plaintiffs’ assertion of a ‘fundamental right to their own bodily and physical health, which includes what foods they do and do not choose to consume for themselves and their families’ is similarly unavailing because plaintiffs do not have a fundamental right to obtain any food they wish.”
  • FDA’s brief goes on to state that “even if such a right did exist, it would not render FDA’s regulations unconstitutional because prohibiting the interstate sale and distribution of unpasteurized milk promotes bodily and physical health.”
  • “There is no fundamental right to freedom of contract.”

Since when did the FDA have authority to tell you what you can and cannot eat and feed your children? Apparently they believe they’ve had it all along. If you go by these assertions, it means the FDA has the authority to prohibit any food of their choosing and make it a crime for you to seek it out. If, one day, the FDA deems tomatoes, broccoli or cashews capable of causing you harm (which is just as ludicrous as their assertions that raw milk is harmful), they could therefore enact such a ban and legally enforce it.

What this means is that freedom of food choice is a myth if you live in the United States, and this simply is not acceptable. No one, and certainly not any government agency, should be able to restrict your access to pure, unadulterated food, but the dairy industry and other industrial farmers that depend on CAFOs employ powerful lobbyists will stop at nothing to persuade government to remove the small farmers from the market entirely. The truth is, if enough people start demanding naturally, sustainably and humanely raised meat, dairy and produce, the giant farming monopolies that currently dominate the market would not be able to compete.

Their businesses depend on pesticides, CAFOs, genetically modified seeds, growth hormones and the like … so when they see all-natural creameries like the one operated by Randy Sowers and his wife Karen, or natural farms like Bakers Green Acres gaining loyal and growing customer bases, they get nervous – and they get the government involved in any way they can.

Please Support Your Local Small Farms

The healthiest food choices are nearly always those that come from responsible, high-quality, sustainable sources.

This is why I encourage you to support the small family farms in your area. This includes not only visiting the farm directly, if you have one nearby, but also taking part in farmer’s markets and community-supported agriculture programs. Now that summer is almost here in the United States, fresh produce and other wonderful whole foods are available in abundance. Not only is the food so much tastier and healthier when you get it from sustainable, non-CAFO sources, but there is something about shopping for fresh foods in an open-air, social environment that just feels right. An artificially lit, dreary supermarket — home to virtually every CAFO food made — just can’t compete.

If you want to experience some of these benefits first-hand, here are some great resources to obtain wholesome food that supports not only you but also the environment:

  1. Alternative Farming Systems Information Center, Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)
  2. Farmers’ Markets — A national listing of farmers’ markets
  3. Local Harvest — This Web site will help you find farmers’ markets, family farms, and other sources of sustainably grown food in your area where you can buy produce, grass-fed meats, and many other goodies.
  4. Eat Well Guide: Wholesome Food from Healthy Animals — The Eat Well Guide is a free online directory of sustainably raised meat, poultry, dairy, and eggs from farms, stores, restaurants, inns, and hotels, and online outlets in the United States and Canada.
  5. Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture(CISA) — CISA is dedicated to sustaining agriculture and promoting the products of small farms.
  6. FoodRoutes — The FoodRoutes “Find Good Food” map can help you connect with local farmers to find the freshest, tastiest food possible. On their interactive map, you can find a listing for local farmers, CSA’s, and markets near you.

Finally, for more information on the ongoing attacks against small family farms in the United States consider watching Farmageddon: The Unseen War on American Family Farms, a documentary by Kristin Canty. But I warn you … the injustices it contains may just make your blood boil.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/05/15/raw-milk-farmers-on-money-laundering-crimes.aspx

How Eggs Have Become a Disaster

Omega-3 fats are essential polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs). Your body uses these fats for a variety of functions, such as blood clotting, brain and eye health, digestion and muscle activity.1,2,3

Humans evolved on a diet of omega-6 to omega 3 fats in a ratio of close to 1-to-1.4 However, in the past several decades, the ratio in the stand Western diet measured between 15-to-1 and 16.7-to-1 in 20065 and 10 years later measured at 20-to-1 or greater.6 This shift began during the Industrial Revolution when people began eating foods rich in vegetable oils and cereal grains were fed to livestock, raising the levels of omega-6 fats in meat.7

Omega-3 fats can be broken down into three main categories — alpha linoleic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA).8 ALA is a precursor to EPA and DHA, but it can only be converted in amounts less than 5%.9 DHA and EPA are long-chain omega-3 fats.

You must get each form of omega-3 fat from foods or dietary supplements. ALA is plant-based and found mostly in flaxseed, walnuts, chia seeds and hemp seeds.10 Bioavailable DHA and EPA are found in fish and other marine-based foods.11

There is mounting research that drives home the importance of animal-based omega-3 fats for heart health.12 Deficiency can leave you vulnerable to chronic disease and may increase your risk of poor outcomes in COVID-19.

As I mentioned, the objective is to bring your ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids as close to 1-to-1 as possible. Many foods have omega-3 fats, but the ratio of omega-6 to omega 3 is high, so foods other than marine-based fish cannot effectively raise your omega-3 levels.

Omega 3-to-6 Levels in Conventional Eggs Have Plummeted

Farmers used to harvest their eggs from chickens that were free ranging and allowed to forage for their food. For the most part, consumers today have the option of buying four different types of eggs at the grocery store.13,14 They are:

  • Conventional — These eggs are produced by cage-raised or cage-free chickens that are grain-fed. Cage-free means the chickens are not in cages, but still are packed into a large room with little space.
  • Organic — Hens that produce certified organic eggs receive organic feed and are not treated with hormones. The certification does not necessarily mean they are allowed to forage.
  • Pastured or free-range Hens have some access to the outdoors where they may also have access to their natural food such as plants and insects. The pasture-raised claim15 can be made if there is just a small, bare dirt area, and the free-range claim16 can be made if there is a door that the farm could at some point open. This designation does not indicate what the hens are fed.
  • Omega-3 enriched — The hens are raised like conventional chickens and the feed is supplemented with an omega-3 source like flax seeds.

Analysis and comparison of fatty acid composition in conventionally raised and outdoor chickens allowed to forage for insects and plants is vastly different.17One study published by Cambridge University18 analyzed the difference in the eggs of hens allowed to forage for insects and plants against those fed a commercial diet and kept in cages.

The researchers controlled for the differences in chicken breeds by using sister hens and splitting them into groups. The hens were fed over six weeks before the eggs were analyzed. The researchers split the hens allowed to forage into three groups where one group had access to alfalfa, the second to red-and-white clover and the third to a mix of cool-season grasses.

At the end of the study, they found the concentrations of fatty acids and vitamin A did not differ in the three pastured groups, but those that foraged on grass had 23% more vitamin E then those that foraged on clover.

When they compared the eggs from the caged hens against the pastured eggs they found the hens allowed to forage had “twice as much vitamin E and long-chain omega-3 fats, 2.5-fold more total omega-3 fatty acids, and less than half the ratio of omega-6:omega-3 fatty acids.”19

A later study20 also demonstrated that hens allowed to forage outdoors laid eggs with vitamin D content that was up to four times higher than those who were kept indoors. They compared vitamin D content from the hens exposed to sunlight against free-range eggs purchased at the supermarket and found those from the grocer had relatively low vitamin D content.

Consequences of the Dramatic Shift in Omega Fats

Scientific evidence shows that there have been significant consequences as humans began to eat a diet rich in omega-6 fats and low in omega-3s. The majority of omega-6 fats used to come from nuts and seeds. However current intake comes from processed foods and oxidized vegetable oils.21

This imbalance in omega fats is one route to inflammatory disease, including heart disease, diabetes and cancer. One primary source of omega-6 fats in the American diet is soybean oil, which accounts for 60% of all vegetable oils found in processed foods, salad dressings, snacks and margarine.22

Researchers have linked diets high in soybean oil with Type 2 diabetes and obesity.23 Both of these health conditions are associated with heart disease, impaired cognition, neuropathy and early death.

In recent years it has become increasingly clear that one of the most damaging components in the modern diet is processed vegetable oils, including soybean oil. The biological damage they cause may be even worse than that triggered by refined sugar and high-fructose corn syrup, researchers say.24

The reason is because the oils trigger mitochondrial dysfunction that drives disease processes and several studies25,26,27 have provided scientific evidence of this. The good news is that replacing dangerous oils with healthy saturated fats can go a long way towards boosting your health and reducing your risk of chronic disease.

Unfortunately, many health authority authorities insist that omega-6 rich oils like soybean, corn and canola oil are healthier than saturated animal fats such as pasture-raised butter and lard. This myth has been a tough one to dismantle, despite the evidence against it. To learn more about how processed vegetable oils can harm your health see, “The Case Against Processed Vegetable Oils.”

Many Benefits of Balancing Omega-3 and Omega-6 Ratio

There are significant benefits to balancing your omega-6 and omega-3 ratio. For example, research28 published in 2018 confirmed omega-3 fat can reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease, coronary heart disease and all-cause mortality. Participants with an omega-3 index in the highest quintile had a total mortality 34% lower than those in the lowest quintile, and a 39% lower risk for cardiovascular disease.

As detailed in “More Data Support Heart Healthy Benefits of Omega-3s,” research has found fish oil consumption lowered the risk of all-cause mortality by 13% and cardiovascular mortality by 16%.

DHA is crucial for your brain health. Without enough, your nerve cells become stiff and more prone to inflammation as omega-3 fats are substituted with omega-6. Nerve cells that are rigid and inflamed have lower levels of proper neurotransmission and cells become compromised.29

Low levels of DHA have been linked to memory loss and Alzheimer’s disease,30and some studies suggest degenerative brain diseases may potentially be reversible with sufficient DHA.31,32 Other health benefits include:

Reducing inflammation — This can be helpful for those suffering with rheumatoid arthritis by reducing stiffness and pain.33 Women who suffer from menstrual pain may also experience milder symptoms.34,35
Optimizing muscle building and bone strength — Omega-3 fats help your body build healthy muscle mass, including people suffering from cancer who may experience cachexia.36 Omega-3 fats can also help improve your bone strength by improving the utilization of calcium in your body. This may lead to a reduction in the development of osteoporosis.37,38
Improving metabolic syndrome39 and insulin resistance.40
Improving mental health and behavior — Demonstrated benefits have been shown for children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), including reduced aggression, hyperactivity,41 impulsivity,42 oppositional behavior43 and restlessness.44 Omega-3 is associated with lowered risk for other neurological/cognitive dysfunction as well, including: memory loss, brain aging, learning disorders and ADHD,45 autism and dyslexia.46
Protecting your vision — DHA is a major structural element in your eye and brain.47 Low levels of DHA may increase your risk for age related macular degeneration.48
Reducing your risk of kidney disease49 and colon cancer.50

Importance of Omega-3 Testing

Like with most other biomarkers, it’s impossible to know your omega-3 fatty acid index without testing. The omega-3 index provides the most accurate measurement in the body and should ideally be above 8%.51 The test measures the amount of omega-3 in the red blood cells as a reflection of how much is found in the rest of the body.

Basically, the test measures the average of your intake based on the lifespan of a red blood cell over 120 days. This means it is not influenced by recent meals, but rather an average of the past months. Researchers have used it as an index to analyze data, including that of the Framingham study52 and the Women’s Health Initiative.53

Maintaining a level in the range that is associated with low risk can reduce your potential chance of heart disease. An index below 4% has a high risk of heart disease, those with an index from 4% to 8% have an intermediate risk and those with an index greater than 8% have the lowest risk for coronary heart disease.54

Another study55 used randomized control trial results to assess the effects of supplementation on telomere length and oxidative stress. The data suggested that telomere length increases with a decreasing ratio of omega-6 to omega-3. The researchers concluded that even over a short time, a change in the ratio has an impact on cell aging, inflammation and oxidative stress.

Safely Raise Your Omega-3 Intake

If you discover you need more omega-3 after getting tested, consider the different ways you can raise your level without adding toxins. Strategies include reducing or eliminating processed foods as they are high in omega-6 fats and switching to foods that have a lower ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fats, such as locally raised, outdoor eggs. These are also great sources of omega-3:

Fish — Small, cold-water fatty fish such as mackerel, anchovies and sardines are excellent sources that have a low risk of hazardous contamination. Wild-caught Alaskan salmon is also low in mercury and other environmental toxins.

Unfortunately, much of the fish supply is heavily polluted with industrial waste, so it is extremely important to be selective, choosing fish high in healthy fats and low in contaminants, such as those mentioned above.

Krill oil — Krill oil is my preferred choice as a supplement because it has the indispensable animal-based DHA and EPA your body needs, and in a form that’s less prone to oxidation.

With the help of phospholipids, the nutrients in krill oil are carried directly to your cell membranes where they are more readily absorbed. Additionally, they may cross your blood-brain barrier to reach important brain structures.

While the following sources may be tempting because they are readily available and cost less than the ones mentioned above, I strongly advise avoiding:

Farmed salmon — It contains about half the omega-3 levels of wild salmon, is often given antibiotics to treat bacterial infections, and fed a genetically engineered diet of corn and soy products and feed that also may contain or contaminated with pesticides and chicken feathers, poultry litter, genetically modified yeast, chicken fat and dyes.56

Large carnivorous fish — Marlin, swordfish and tuna (including canned tuna), for example, tend to contain some of the highest concentrations of mercury,57 a known neurotoxin.58

Fish oil — While fish oil may appear to be a convenient and relatively inexpensive way to increase your intake of omega-3 fats, it typically delivers insufficient antioxidant support. It is also highly prone to oxidation,59 leading to the formation of harmful free radicals.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2021/07/28/how-eggs-have-become-a-disaster.aspx

Statins Double Risk of Dementia, Are Linked to COVID Deaths

The use of statin cholesterol-lowering medications has been on the rise for decades1 and they are among the most widely used drugs in the world. In the U.S., close to 50% of U.S. adults over 75 years old take a statin2 to lower their cholesterol in the misguided hope of preventing heart disease, heart attacks and stroke.

Not only is there strong evidence suggesting that statins are a colossal waste of money, but their use may also harm your brain health — more than doubling your risk of dementia in some cases.3

The benefit must clearly outweigh the risk when it comes to any drug treatment, but this is rarely the case with statins, which do not protect against cardiovascular disease and are linked to a number of health conditions4,5including dementia, diabetes6 and even increased risk of death from COVID-19.7

Statins Doubled Risk of Developing Dementia

Statins’ effects on cognitive performance have previously been called into question, since lower levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol are linked to a higher risk of dementia.8 The featured study, published in The Journal of Nuclear Medicine,9 involved people with mild cognitive impairment and looked into the effects of two types of statins: hydrophilic and lipophilic.

Hydrophilic statins, which include pravastatin (Pravachol) and rosuvastatin (Crestor), dissolve more readily in water, while lipophilic statins, such as atorvastatin (Lipitor), simvastatin (Zocor), Fluvastatin (Lescol), and lovastatin (Altoprev), dissolve more readily in fats.10 Lipophilic statins can easily enter cells11 and be distributed throughout your body, whereas hydrophilic statins focus on the liver.12

According to study author Prasanna Padmanabham of the University of California, Los Angeles, “There have been many conflicting studies on the effects of statin drugs on cognition. While some claim that statins protect users against dementia, others assert that they accelerate the development of dementia. Our study aimed to clarify the relationship between statin use and subject’s long-term cognitive trajectory.”13

Subjects were divided into groups based on cognitive status, cholesterol levels and type of statin used, and followed for eight years. Those with early mild cognitive impairment and low to moderate cholesterol levels at the start of the study who used lipophilic statins had more than double the risk of dementia compared to those who did not use statins.14

Further, this group also had significant decline in metabolism of the brain’s posterior cingulate cortex, which is the brain region that declines most significantly in early Alzheimer’s disease.15

Your Brain Needs Cholesterol

About 25% to 30% of your body’s total cholesterol is found in your brain, where it is an essential part of neurons. In your brain, cholesterol helps develop and maintain the plasticity and function of your neurons,16 and data from the Shanghai Aging Study revealed that high levels of LDL cholesterol are inversely associated with dementia in those aged 50 years and over.

“High level of LDL-C may be considered as a potential protective factor against cognition decline,” the researchers noted.17 They compiled a number of mechanisms on why lower cholesterol may be damaging for brain health, including the fact that lower cholesterol is linked with higher mortality in the elderly and may occur alongside malnutrition and chronic diseases, including cancer. As it specifically relates to brain health, however, they suggested:18

  • Decreasing cholesterol levels in the elderly may be associated with cerebral atrophy, which occurs with dementia
  • High LDL cholesterol may be beneficial by reducing neurons’ impairments or helping repair injured neurons
  • Acceleration of neurodegeneration has occurred when neurons were short on cellular cholesterol or cholesterol supply
  • Cholesterol plays an important role in the synthesis, transportation and metabolism of steroid hormones and lipid-soluble vitamins, and both of these are important to synaptic integrity and neurotransmission

Lower cholesterol levels were also associated with worse cognitive function among South Korean study participants aged 65 and over, and were considered to be a “state marker for AD [Alzheimer’s disease].”19

A U.S. study of more than 4,300 Medicare recipients aged 65 and over also revealed that higher levels of total cholesterol were associated with a decreased risk of Alzheimer’s disease, even after adjusting for cardiovascular risk factors and other related variables.20

Statins Increase Death Risk From COVID-19

The risks to brain health are only one red flag tied to statins. A concerning link was also uncovered among statins, diabetes and an increased risk of severe disease from COVID-19.21 Among patients with Type 2 diabetes admitted to a hospital for COVID-19, those taking statins had significantly higher mortality rates from COVID-19 within seven days and 28 days compared to those not taking the drugs.

The researchers acknowledged those taking statins were older, more frequently male and often had more comorbidities, including high blood pressure, heart failure and complications of diabetes. However, despite the limitations, the researchers found enough evidence in the over 2,400 participants to conclude:22

“… our present results do not support the hypothesis of a protective role of routine statin use against COVID-19, at least not in hospitalized patients with T2DM (Type 2 diabetes mellitus).

Indeed, the potentially deleterious effects of routine statin treatment on COVID-19-related mortality demands further investigation and, as recently highlighted, only appropriately designed and powered randomized controlled trials will be able to properly address this important issue.”

Statins Double — or Triple — Diabetes Risk

A connection already exists between statins and diabetes, to the extent that people who take statins are more than twice as likely to be diagnosed with diabetes than those who do not, and those who take the drugs for longer than two years have more than triple the risk.23,24

“The fact that increased duration of statin use was associated with an increased risk of diabetes — something we call a dose-dependent relationship — makes us think that this is likely a causal relationship,” study author Victoria Zigmont, a graduate researcher in public health at The Ohio State University in Columbus, said in a news release.25

The data also indicated that individuals taking statin medications had a 6.5% increased risk of high blood sugar as measured by hemoglobin A1c value,26which is an average level of blood sugar measuring the past 60 to 90 days.

Researchers with the Erasmus Medical Center in The Netherlands also analyzed data from more than 9,500 patients, finding those who had ever used statins had a 38% higher risk of Type 2 diabetes, with the risk being higher in those with impaired glucose homeostasis and those who were overweight or obese.27

The researchers concluded, “Individuals using statins may be at higher risk for hyperglycemia, insulin resistance and eventually Type 2 diabetes. Rigorous preventive strategies such as glucose control and weight reduction in patients when initiating statin therapy might help minimize the risk of diabetes.”

But a far better strategy may be preventing insulin resistance in the first place, by avoiding statin drugs and eating a healthy diet. According to Dr. Aseem Malhotra, an interventional cardiologist consultant in London, U.K. — who has been attacked for being a “statin denier” after calling out the drugs’ side effects28 — and a colleague:29

“In young adults, preventing insulin resistance could prevent 42% of myocardial infarctions, a larger reduction than correcting hypertension (36 %), low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) (31 %), body mass index (BMI) (21 %) or LDL-C (16 %).30

It is plausible that the small benefits of statins in the prevention of CVD come from pleiotropic effects which are independent of LDL-lowering. The focus in primary prevention should therefore be on foods and food groups that have a proven benefit in reducing hard endpoints and mortality.”

The Statin Scam

Even as saturated fats and cholesterol have been vilified, and statin drugs have become among the most widely prescribed medications worldwide, heart disease remains a top killer.31 Today, statin drugs to reduce cholesterol levels are recommended for four broad patient populations:32

  1. Those who have already had a cardiovascular event
  2. Adults with diabetes
  3. Individuals with LDL cholesterol levels ≥190 mg/dL
  4. Individuals with an estimated 10-year cardiovascular risk ≥7.5% (based on an algorithm that uses your age, gender, blood pressure, total cholesterol, high density lipoproteins (HDL), race and history of diabetes to predict the likelihood you’ll experience a heart attack in the coming 10 years)

Despite statins being prescribed for these sizable groups, and “target” cholesterol levels being achieved, a systematic review of 35 randomized, controlled trials found that no additional benefits were gained. According to an analysis in BMJ Evidence-Based Medicine:33

“Recommending cholesterol lowering treatment based on estimated cardiovascular risk fails to identify many high-risk patients and may lead to unnecessary treatment of low-risk individuals. The negative results of numerous cholesterol lowering randomized controlled trials call into question the validity of using low density lipoprotein cholesterol as a surrogate target for the prevention of cardiovascular disease.”

Even in the case of recurrent cardiovascular events, despite the increase in statin use from 1999 to 2013, researchers writing in BMC Cardiovascular Disorders noted, “there was only a small decrease in the incidence of recurrent CVD, and this occurred mainly in older patients without statins prescribed.”34

Statins Won’t Protect Your Heart Health

Statins are effective at lowering cholesterol, but whether this is the panacea for helping you avoid heart disease and extend your lifespan is a topic of heated debate. Again in 2018, a scientific review presented substantial evidence that high LDL and total cholesterol are not an indication of heart disease risk, and that statin treatment is of doubtful benefit as a form of primary prevention for this reason.35

In short, these drugs have done nothing to derail the rising trend of heart disease, while putting users at increased risk of health conditions like diabetes, dementia and others, such as:

  • Cancer36
  • Cataracts37
  • Triple risk of coronary artery and aortic artery calcification38
  • Musculoskeletal disorders, including myalgia, muscle weakness, muscle cramps, rhabdomyolysis and autoimmune muscle disease39
  • Depression40

In the event you’re taking statins, be aware that they deplete your body of coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) and inhibit the synthesis of vitamin K2. The risks of CoQ10 depletion can be somewhat offset by taking a Coenzyme Q10 supplement or, if you’re over 40, its reduced form ubiquinol. But ultimately, if you’re looking to protect both your brain and heart health, avoiding statin drugs and instead optimizing your diet may be the answer.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2021/07/28/statins-double-risk-of-dementia.aspx

Antibiotics: This Commonly Used Drug Found to Promote Obesity

By Dr. Mercola

You may be aware, and possibly have experienced firsthand, that antibiotics can cause diarrhea.

This is because antibiotics, by design, disrupt the balance of good and bad bacteria in your gastrointestinal tract, often killing off both beneficial and harmful microorganisms without distinction.

It is through this same mechanism that antibiotics may also be causing you to pack on extra pounds.

In fact, Dr. Martin Blaser, a professor of microbiology at New York University Langone Medical Center, suggests that antibiotics may permanently alter your gut bacteria and interfere with important hunger hormones secreted by your stomach, leading to increased appetite and body mass index (BMI).

Antibiotics Lead to Increases in Body Fat and Hunger Hormones

Research by Dr. Blaser has shown that 18 months after antibiotics are used to eradicate H. pylori bacteria, there is a:

  • 6-fold increase in the release of ghrelin (the “hunger hormone”) after a meal
  • 20 percent increase in leptin levels (leptin is a hormone produced by fat tissue)
  • 5 percent increase in BMI

Levels of ghrelin should ordinarily fall after a meal to signal your brain that you’re full and ready to stop eating; an increase would therefore essentially tell your brain to continue eating, leading to weight gain. Further, the increase in leptin levels is concerning because overexposure to high levels of the hormone can lead to leptin resistance, which means your body is unable to properly hear leptin’s signals.

The way your body stores fat is a highly regulated process that is controlled, primarily, by leptin. If you gain excess weight, the additional fat produces extra leptin that should alert your brain that your body is storing too much fat and needs to burn off the excess.

To do this, signals are sent to your brain to stop being hungry and to stop eating. When you become leptin-resistant, your body can no longer hear these messages — so it remains hungry and stores more fat.

Interestingly, you can easily become leptin resistant by eating the typical American diet full of sugar (particularly fructose), refined grains and processed foods … which, like antibiotics, will upset the balance of bacteria in your gut.

Farmers Use Antibiotics to Fatten Up Livestock Quickly

About 70 percent of all the antibiotics produced are used in agriculture — not necessarily to fight disease, but rather to promote weight gain.

As stated by the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs:

“Continuous, low-dose administration of an antibiotic can increase the rate and efficiency of weight gain in healthy livestock. The presence of antibiotics likely changes the composition of the gut flora to favor growth. Debate is ongoing as to how gut flora are changed; change may simply be a reduction in numbers, a change in species composition or a combination of the two.

… Some antibiotics may also enhance feed consumption and growth by stimulating metabolic processes within the animal.”

Unfortunately, this practice is also contributing to the alarming spread of antibiotic-resistant disease. As it pertains to your weight, there’s ample reason to believe that this same phenomenon occurs in humans as well, figuratively turning Americans into fatted calves.

Your Gut Bacteria and Your Waistline Go Hand-in-Hand

Research by Dr. Blaser, for instance, found that mice fed antibiotics (in dosages similar to those given to children for throat or ear infections) had significant increases in body fat despite their diets remaining unchanged.

Multiple studies have actually shown that obese people have different intestinal bacteria than slim people, and that altering the microbial balance in your gut can influence your weight. Here are six such studies:

  1. When rats were given lactic acid bacteria while in utero through adulthood, they put on significantly less weight than other rats eating the same high-calorie diet. They also had lower levels of minor inflammation, which has been associated with obesity.
  2. Babies with high numbers of Bifidobacteria and low numbers of Staphylococcus aureus — which may cause low-grade inflammation in your body, contributing to obesity — appeared to be protected from excess weight gain. This may be one reason why breast-fed babies have a lower risk of obesity, as Bifidobacteria flourish in the guts of breast-fed babies.
  3. Two studies found that obese individuals had about 20 percent more of a family of bacteria known as Firmicutes, and almost 90 percent less of a bacteria called Bacteroidetes than lean people. Firmicutes help your body to extract calories from complex sugars and deposit those calories in fat. When these microbes were transplanted into normal-weight mice, those mice started to gain twice as much fat.
  4. Obese people were able to reduce their abdominal fat by nearly 5 percent, and their subcutaneous fat by over 3 percent, just be drinking a probiotic-rich fermented milk beverage for 12 weeks.
  5. Probiotics (good bacteria) have been found to benefit metabolic syndrome, which often goes hand-in-hand with obesity.
  6. Probiotics may also be beneficial in helping women lose weight after childbirth when taken from the first trimester through breastfeeding.

Healthy Gut Bacteria Cannot Coexist With Antibiotics

Antibiotics can save your life if you develop a serious bacterial infection, but it’s important that you resist the urge to ask your physician for a prescription for every ear, nose, or throat infection you come down with. Likewise for a cold or the flu. Antibiotics are useless against viral infections like these, and when used for this purpose will only harm your health by wiping out the good bacteria in your gut.

Antibiotic use has become so routine in the United States that one round of the drugs may seem like no big deal, but remember that using them drastically alters the makeup of bacteria in your gut, which will need to be rebuilt in order for you to stay in good health. Whenever you use an antibiotic, you’re also increasing your susceptibility to developing infections with resistance to that antibiotic — and you can become the carrier of this resistant bug and even spread it to others.

Ultimately the problem of antibiotic-overuse needs to be stemmed through public policy on a nationwide level, especially in the agricultural community, but I urge you to also take personal responsibility and evaluate your own use of antibiotics, and avoid taking them — or giving them to your children — unless absolutely necessary.

Remember that the foods you eat are also a major source of exposure to antibiotics, so to protect your gut bacteria you should buy primarily antibiotic-free, organically raised meat and produce. Keep in mind that conventionally farmed food is often grown in fertilizer derived from factory-farmed animal waste and human sewage, which may be a source of contamination with antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

The Recipe for Healthy Gut Bacteria

Your gut bacteria are vulnerable to your lifestyle. If you eat a lot of processed foods, for instance, your gut bacteria are going to be compromised because processed foods in general will destroy healthy microflora and feed bad bacteria and yeast.

In addition to antibiotics, your gut bacteria are also very sensitive to:

  • Chlorinated water
  • Antibacterial soap
  • Agricultural chemicals
  • Pollution

Because virtually all of us are exposed to these at least occasionally, ensuring your gut bacteria remain balanced should be considered an ongoing process, and consuming fermented foods is one of the best ways to do this.

One of the reasons why fermented foods are so beneficial is because they contain lactic acid bacteria — a type of beneficial gut bacteria that research shows can help you stay slim.

I have long stated that it’s generally a wise choice to “reseed” your body with good bacteria from time to time by taking a high-quality probiotic supplement or eating non-pasteurized, traditionally fermented foods such as:

  • Lassi (an Indian yoghurt drink, traditionally enjoyed before dinner)
  • Fermented  organic grass-fed raw milk, such as kefir
  • Various pickled fermentations of cabbage, turnips, eggplant, cucumbers, onions, squash and carrots
  • Natto (fermented soy)

If you do not eat fermented foods on a regular basis, a high-quality probiotic supplement can be incredibly useful to help maintain healthy gut bacteria when you stray from your healthy diet and consume excess grains or sugar, or if you have to take antibiotics.

Also please remember that it is vital to eliminate ALL sugars. They will sabotage any beneficial effects of the fermented foods, as they will act as nutrients for the pathogenic yeast, fungi and bacteria that are in your gut.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/11/24/antibiotics-promote-obesity.aspx

Media Blasts Oprah for Supporting Alternative Medicine

oprah, oprah winfrey, suzanne somers, cures, vaccines, hpv, bioidentical hormones, hormonesIn January of this year, Oprah Winfrey invited Suzanne Somers on her show to talk about health tips. The 62-year-old actress uses bio-identical estrogen cream and progesterone on her other arm two weeks a month.

According to Somers, the bio-identical hormones are identical to the ones created by the human body, unlike conventional hormones, which are made from mare’s urine.

The result has been a media firestorm condemning both Somers and Oprah, including the hit piece in Newsweek linked below. The authors of the piece, Weston Kosova and Pat Wingert, argue that bio-identical hormones are just as synthetic as conventional hormones — although they don’t much discuss the fact that conventional hormones are actually different from the 17-beta-estradiol made by your body, while the bio-identical hormones are 17-beta-estradiol itself.

The real reason for the attacks on bio-identical hormones?

As Somers points out, many doctors, scientists and media figures make a good deal of money off of the pharmaceutical industry.

And one thing you won’t see mentioned in the Newsweek article is the fact that Pat Wingert is the co-author of a pharmaceutically biased book on hormones and menopause, and that  Newsweek is heavily funded by pharmaceutical companies.

This resembles an incident a few years ago when the cattle industry actually sued Oprah Winfrey just for talking about Mad Cow Disease.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/06/18/media-blast-oprah-for-supporting-alternative-medicine.aspx

How Contraceptive Pill Influences Partner Choice

couple, attraction, choose mateThe contraceptive pill may disrupt women’s natural ability to choose a partner genetically dissimilar to themselves. This could result in difficulties when trying to conceive, an increased risk of miscarriage and long intervals between pregnancies. Passing on a lack of diverse genes to children could also weaken their immune systems.

Humans tend to be attracted to those with a dissimilar genetic make-up to themselves, maintaining genetic diversity, which is signaled by subtle odors. A research team analyzed how the contraceptive pill affects odor preferences, and found that the preferences of women who began using the contraceptive pill shifted towards men with genetically similar odors.

Not only could genetic similarity in couples lead to fertility problems, but it could ultimately lead to the breakdown of relationships when women stop using the contraceptive pill, as odor perception plays a significant role in maintaining attraction to partners, researchers said.
Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2008/08/26/how-contraceptive-pill-influences-partner-choice.aspx

Fibromyalgia Linked to Extensive Brain Inflammation

Fibromyalgia, characterized by chronic, widespread pain is an often-debilitating condition that primarily affects women. While as many as 10 million Americans have fibromyalgia, its cause remains a mystery.

Brain scans of fibromyalgia patients have offered hard evidence that the pain they experience is indeed real — mainly because their threshold for tolerating pain impulses is substantially lower than that of most individuals. But the mechanism causing this lowered pain threshold is still unknown.

Some experts, such as Dr. Frederick Wolfe, the director of the National Databank for Rheumatic Diseases and the lead author of the 1990 paper that first defined fibromyalgia’s diagnostic guidelines, believe fibromyalgia is mainly a physical response to mental and emotional stress.

But while stress and emotions may indeed play an important role, more recent research shows fibromyalgia patients tend to have severe inflammation in their body, including their nervous system and brain.

Signs and Symptoms of Fibromyalgia

Diagnosis can be a challenge, but the updated case definitions of fibromyalgia, issued in 2010 and later simplified in 2012, claim to correctly diagnose about 83 percent of cases.1 Originally, the condition was thought to be a peripheral musculoskeletal disease. Today, fibromyalgia has become increasingly recognized as a neurobiological problem causing central pain sensitization.

Unfortunately, there are currently no laboratory tests available for diagnosing fibromyalgia, so physicians primarily depend on patient histories, reported symptoms and physical exam findings. Classic symptoms of this condition include:

Pain — The key marker of fibromyalgia is pain, which is profound, widespread and chronic. Pain inside of your elbows and knees, collarbones and hips is indicative of fibromyalgia when it’s present on both sides.

People also frequently report pain all over their bodies — including in their muscles, ligaments and tendons — and the pain tends to vary in intensity. It has been described as deep muscular aching, stabbing, shooting, throbbing and twitching.

Neurological complaints add to the discomfort, such as numbness, tingling and burning. The severity of the pain and stiffness is often worse in the morning. Aggravating factors include cold/humid weather, nonrestorative sleep, fatigue, excessive physical activity, physical inactivity, anxiety and stress.

Cognitive impairment — So-called “fibro-fog” or foggy-headedness is a common complaint.

Fatigue — The fatigue of fibromyalgia is different from the fatigue that many people complain of in today’s busy world. It is more than being tired; it’s an all-encompassing exhaustion that interferes with even the simplest daily activities, often leaving the patient with a limited ability to function both mentally and physically for an extended period of time.

Sleep disruption — Another major part of the diagnostic criteria for this condition is some type of significant sleep disturbance. In fact, part of an effective treatment program is to make sure you’re sleeping better.

Medical researchers have documented specific and distinctive abnormalities in the Stage 4 deep sleep of fibromyalgia patients. During sleep, they are constantly interrupted by bursts of awake-like brain activity, limiting the amount of time they spend in deep sleep.

Other symptoms — Other common symptoms include irritable bowel and bladder, headaches and migraines, restless leg syndrome and periodic limb movements, impaired memory and concentration, skin sensitivities and rashes, dry eyes and mouth, anxiety, depression, ringing in the ears, dizziness, Raynaud’s Syndrome and impaired coordination.

Conventional treatment typically involves some form of pain medication, and perhaps psychotropic drugs like antidepressants. I don’t recommend either as they fail to address the cause of your problem. Many fibromyalgia sufferers also do not respond to conventional painkillers, which can set in motion a vicious circle of overmedicating on these dangerous drugs.

Brain Inflammation — Another Hallmark of Fibromyalgia

Using PET imaging, a recent investigation2 by researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital and Karolinska Institutet in Sweden revealed the presence of widespread brain inflammation in patients diagnosed with fibromyalgia.3,4

Earlier research5 conducted at Karolinska Institutet also discovered high concentrations of cytokines (inflammatory proteins) in the cerebrospinal fluid, suggesting fibromyalgia patients have inflammation in their nervous system as well.6

The team at Massachusetts General Hospital, meanwhile, has previously shown that neural inflammation, and glial cell (immune cells) activation specifically, plays a role in chronic back pain. Animal studies have also offered evidence for the hypothesis that glial cell activation can be a cause of chronic pain in general.7

Here, they found that when glial cells in the cerebral cortex were activated, the more aggressive the activation, the greater the fatigue experienced by the patient. As reported by Medical Life Sciences:8

“The current study first assessed fibromyalgia symptoms in patients using a questionnaire. A PET tracer was then used, that is, a radioactive marker which binds a specific protein called translocator protein (TSPO) that is expressed at levels much above the normal in activated glial cells, namely, astrocytes and microglia …

[G]lial activation was found to be present at significantly higher levels in multiple brain areas in patients who had fibromyalgia than in controls. Glial cell activation causes inflammatory chemicals to be released, which cause the pain pathways to be more sensitive to pain, and promote fatigue …

One area showing higher TSPO binding in direct proportion to the self-reported level of fatigue was the cingulate gyrus, an area of the brain linked to emotional processing. Previous research has reported that this area is inflamed in chronic fatigue syndrome.”

Brain Inflammation Linked to Loss of Brain Cells

In related news, German researchers investigating inflammation mechanisms in the brain have found that as mice get older and regulation of inflammatory responses become increasingly impaired, they start losing brain cells.9

Interestingly, the cannabinoid receptor type 1 (CB1), which produces the “high” in response to tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in marijuana, also helps regulate inflammatory reactions in your brain. In short, chronic brain inflammation is in part driven by the CB1 receptors’ failure to respond. To understand how this works, you need to know a little bit about how microglial cells work.

Microglial cells are specialized immune cells found in your central nervous system, including your spinal cord and brain. These immune cells respond to bacteria and are responsible for clearing out malfunctioning nerve cells. They also signal and recruit other immune cells when needed and trigger the inflammatory response when necessary.

Problems arise when the inflammatory response becomes dysregulated and overactive. In the brain, the inflammation can easily damage healthy brain tissue. The “brake signal” that instructs glial cells to stop their inflammatory activity is endocannabinoids, and the endocannabinoids work by binding to certain receptors, including CB1 and cannabinoid receptor type 2 (CB2).

Immune Cells Communicate and Influence Inflammatory Response Using Endocannabinoids

Curiously, microglial cells have virtually no CB1 and very few CB2 receptors, yet they still react to endocannabinoids. The present study was designed to investigate this puzzling riddle. As it turns out, there’s a type of neuron that does contain a large number of CB1 receptors, and it appears that it is the CB1 receptors on these specific neurons that control microglial cell activity.

In other words, it appears microglial cells do not communicate with nerve cells directly; rather, they release endocannabinoids, which then bind to CB1 receptors found in nearby neurons. These neurons in turn communicate directly with other nerve cells. So, the brain’s immune response is regulated in an indirect manner rather than a direct one.

Now, what happens with age is that your natural production of endocannabinoids decreases, which then leads to impaired immune response regulation and chronic inflammation. As noted by coauthor Dr. Andras Bilkei-Gorzo:10

“Since the neuronal CB1 receptors are no longer sufficiently activated, the glial cells are almost constantly in inflammatory mode. More regulatory neurons die as a result, so the immune response is less regulated and may become free-running.”

Earlier research11 by this same team found that THC can help restore cognitive function in older brains, and the current study also hints at THC-containing cannabis may have valuable neuroprotective benefits in older people by quelling brain inflammation and preventing loss of brain cells. As the study was done on mice, further research is needed to confirm that the same mechanisms apply to humans, but it’s compelling nonetheless.

Are You Living an Inflammatory Lifestyle?

Your diet can either promote or decrease inflammation. For example, foods that increase the inflammatory response in your body include:

  • Sugar, especially processed corn syrup
  • Synthetically produced trans fats
  • Processed vegetable and seed oils, high in oxidized omega-6 fat
  • Processed meats
  • Refined carbohydrates

Meanwhile, marine-based omega-3 fats have powerful anti-inflammatory effects, and are crucial for healthy brain function in general. Antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables are also important for controlling inflammation, as is optimizing your vitamin D to a level of 60 to 80 ng/mL, ideally through sensible sun exposure.

In addition to anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting properties, vitamin D receptors appear in a wide variety of brain tissue, and researchers believe optimal vitamin D levels may enhance important chemicals in your brain and protect brain cells by increasing the effectiveness of glial cells that help nurse damaged neurons back to health.

A number of ubiquitous chemicals have also been implicated in inflammation, so if you struggle with fibromyalgia you’d be wise to take a close look at your choice of foods, household and personal care products. As mentioned earlier, getting enough high-quality sleep is another key treatment component for fibromyalgia.

Ketogenic Diet Massively Decreases Brain Inflammation

Research12 published last year suggests ketogenic diets — which are high in healthy fats and low in net carbs — are a particularly powerful ally for suppressing brain inflammation, as ketones are powerful HDAC (histone deacetylase inhibitors) that suppress the primary NF-κB inflammatory pathway.

As explained by Medical Xpress,13 the defining moment of the study14 came when the team “identified a pivotal protein that links the diet to inflammatory genes, which, if blocked, could mirror the anti-inflammatory effects of ketogenic diets.”

A ketogenic diet changes the way your body uses energy, converting your body from burning carbohydrates for energy to burning fat as your primary source of fuel. When your body is able to burn fat, your liver creates ketones, which burn more efficiently than carbs, thus creating far less reactive oxygen species and secondary free radicals that can damage your cellular and mitochondrial cell membranes, proteins and DNA.

Animals (rats) used in this study were found to have reduced inflammation when the researchers used a molecule called 2-deoxyglucose (2DG) to block glucose metabolism and induce a ketogenic state, similar to what would occur if you followed a ketogenic diet. By doing this, inflammation was brought down to levels near those found in controls.

Suppressing Inflammation Improves Pain

Senior study author Dr. Raymond Swanson, a professor of neurology at UCSF and chief of the neurology service at the San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center, commented on the results, saying:

“I was most surprised by the magnitude of this effect, because I thought ketogenic diets might help just a little bit. But when we got these big effects with 2DG, I thought wow, there’s really something here.

The team further found that reduced glucose metabolism lowered a key barometer of energy metabolism — the NADH/NAD+ ratio — which in turn activated a protein called CtBP that acts to suppress activity of inflammatory genes.”

The study also pointed out that a ketogenic diet may relieve pain via several mechanisms, similar to the ways it’s known to help epilepsy.

“Like seizures, chronic pain is thought to involve increased excitability of neurons; for pain, this can involve peripheral and/or central neurons. Thus, there is some similarity of the underlying biology,” the authors stated, adding:

A major research focus should be on how metabolic interventions such as a ketogenic diet can ameliorate common, comorbid and difficult-to-treat conditions such as pain and inflammation.”15

Cyclical Ketosis for Optimal Health

Eating a ketogenic diet doesn’t have to be complicated or painful. My book “Fat for Fuel” presents a complete Mitochondrial Metabolic Therapy (MMT) program, complemented by an online course created in collaboration with nutritionist Miriam Kalamian, who specializes in nutritional ketosis.

The course, which consists of seven comprehensive lessons, teaches you the keys to fighting chronic disease and optimizing your health and longevity. In summary, the MMT diet is a cyclical ketogenic diet, high in healthy fats and fiber, low in net carbs with a moderate amount of protein.

The cyclical component is important, as long-term continuous ketosis has drawbacks that may actually undermine your health and longevity. One of the primary reasons to cycle in and out of ketosis is because the “metabolic magic” in the mitochondria actually occurs during the refeeding phase, not during the starvation phase.

Ideally, once you have established ketosis you cycle healthy carbs back in to about 100 to 150 grams on days when you do strength training. MMT has a number of really important health benefits, and may just be the U-turn you’ve been searching for if you’re struggling with a chronic health condition. You can learn more by following the hyperlinks provided in the text above.

Address Emotional Contributors

Since fibromyalgia is a chronic condition, it becomes emotionally challenging in addition to the physical challenges it imposes on your life. Having a game plan to deal with your emotional well-being is especially important if you suffer from any chronic disease.

If you have fibromyalgia, you might be able to trace it back to a triggering event, or you might not. Any traumatic experience has the potential to linger in your mind for a lifetime. You can have the perfect diet, the perfect exercise routine, and an ideal life; but if you have lingering unresolved emotional issues, you can still become very sick.

A tool that can help release this emotional sludge is the Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT). If you are a regular reader of my newsletter, this won’t be an unfamiliar term to you. EFT is a form of bioenergetic normalization. If you have fibromyalgia, this is something that is going to be extremely helpful. You can do this yourself, at home, and it takes just a few minutes to learn. For a demonstration, see the video above.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2018/10/18/fibromyalgia-brain-inflammation-link.aspx

Foods That Chronic Pain Sufferers Need to Avoid

chronic painChronic pain is a pervasive issue and fibromyalgia is a very common form. It is a chronic condition whose symptoms include muscle and tissue pain, fatigue, depression, and sleep disturbances.

Recent data suggests that central sensitization, in which neurons in your spinal cord become sensitized by inflammation or cell damage, may be involved in the way fibromyalgia sufferers process pain.

Certain chemicals in the foods you eat may trigger the release of neurotransmitters that heighten this sensitivity.

Although there have been only a handful of studies on diet and fibromyalgia, the following eating rules can’t hurt, and may help, when dealing with chronic pain.

Limit Sugar as Much as Possible. Increased insulin levels will typically dramatically worsen pain. So you will want to limit all sugars and this would typically include fresh fruit juices. Whole fresh fruit is the preferred method for consuming fruit products.

If you are overweight, have high blood pressure, high cholesterol or diabetes, you will also want to limit grains as much as possible as they are metabolized very similarly to sugars. This would also include organic unprocessed grains. Wheat and gluten grains are the top ones to avoid.

Eat fresh foods. Eating a diet of fresh foods, devoid of preservatives and additives, may ease symptoms triggered by coexisting conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

It’s also a good idea to buy organic food when possible, as it’s best to avoid pesticides and chemicals. However, fresh is best. So if you have to choose between local, fresh, non-organic and organic but wilting – go with fresh, and clean properly.

Avoid caffeine. Fibromyalgia is believed to be linked to an imbalance of brain chemicals that control mood, and it is often linked with inadequate sleep and fatigue. The temptation is to artificially and temporarily eliminate feelings of fatigue with stimulants like caffeine, but this approach does more harm than good in the long run. Though caffeine provides an initial boost of energy, it is no substitute for sleep, and is likely to keep you awake.

Try avoiding nightshade vegetables. Nightshade vegetables like tomatoes, potatoes, and eggplant may trigger arthritis and pain conditions in some people.

Be Careful with Your Fats. Animal based omega-3 fats like DHA and EPA have been touted as a heart-healthy food, and they may help with pain, as well. They can help reduce inflammation and improve brain function. At the same time, you want to eliminate all trans fat and fried foods, as these will promote inflammation.

Use yeast sparingly. Consuming yeast may also contribute to the growth of yeast fungus, which can contribute to pain.

Avoid pasteurized dairy. Many fibromyalgia sufferers have trouble digesting milk and dairy products. However, many find that raw dairy products, especially from grass fed organic sources, are well tolerated.

Cut down on carbs. About 90 percent of fibromyalgia patients have low adrenal functioning, which affects metabolism of carbohydrates and may lead to hypoglycemia.

Avoid aspartame. The artificial sweetener found in some diet sodas and many sugar-free sweets is part of a chemical group called excitotoxins, which activate neurons that can increase your sensitivity to pain.

Avoid additives. Food additives such as monosodium glutamate (MSG) often cause trouble for pain patients. MSG is an excitatory neurotransmitter that may stimulate pain receptors; glutamate levels in spinal fluid have been shown to correlate with pain levels in fibromyalgia patients.

Stay away from junk food. Limit or eliminate fast food, candy, and vending-machine products. In addition to contributing to weight gain and the development of unhealthy eating habits, these diet-wreckers may also irritate your muscles, disrupt your sleep, and compromise your immune system.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2010/01/19/foods-that-chronic-pain-sufferers-need-to-avoid.aspx

How to Avoid Being Fooled at the Supermarket

https://video.google.com/googleplayer.swf?docid=-5774892958354867332&hl=en&fs=trueHow and what you eat has radically changed over the past few decades with the all-consuming rise of the supermarket. But what price are you paying for this homogenized, cheap and convenient food? This video investigates how supermarkets have affected the food on your plate, and reveals the telltale signs that the food you buy may not have been grown in the way you think.
Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2008/12/25/how-to-avoid-being-fooled-at-the-supermarket.aspx

Proof That Fibromyalgia is Real

fibromyalgiaResearchers have detected abnormalities in the brains of people with fibromyalgia, a chronic condition whose symptoms include muscle pain and fatigue.

Some researchers have suggested that the pain of fibromyalgia is the result of depression, but the new study suggests otherwise. The abnormalities were independent of anxiety and depression levels.

Researchers evaluated 20 women diagnosed with fibromyalgia and 10 healthy women without the condition who served as a control group. The researchers performed brain imaging called single photon emission computed tomography, or SPECT.

The imaging showed that women with the syndrome had “brain perfusion” — blood flow abnormalities in their brains. The abnormalities were directly correlated with the severity of disease symptoms.

An increase in blood flow was found in the brain region known to discriminate pain intensity.
Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2008/11/22/proof-that-fibromyalgia-is-real.aspx

Are You Allergic to Wireless Internet?

cell phone dangers, wifi, wireless, internet, allergies, Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity Syndrome, EHS, multiple chemical sensitivity, MCSElectromagnetic Hypersensitivity Syndrome (EHS) is a condition in which people are highly sensitive to electromagnetic fields. In an area such as a wireless hotspot, they experience pain or other symptoms.

People with EHS experience a variety of symptoms including headache, fatigue, nausea, burning and itchy skin, and muscle aches. These symptoms are subjective and vary between individuals, which makes the condition difficult to study, and has left experts divided about the validity of such claims.

More than 30 studies have been conducted to determine what link the condition has to exposure to electromagnetic fields from sources such as radar dishes, mobile phone signals and, Wi-Fi hotspots.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2008/06/21/are-you-allergic-to-wireless-internet.aspx

Environmental Toxins Causing Early Puberty in Both Boys and Girls

By Dr. Mercola

Reaching puberty is a rite of passage that we’ve all been through, but children are now reaching it earlier than ever before, and while precocious puberty in girls has received most of the attention, we now know the trend applies to boys as well.

In the 19th century, the onset of menstruation in girls occurred around the age of 15. Now the average age of the first period is around 12. Some girls develop breasts as early as age seven1 .

According to a recent study in the journal Pediatrics2, boys are now beginning sexual development anywhere from six months to two years earlier than the medically accepted standard based on previous studies.

African-American boys were found to hit the onset of puberty the soonest, starting around the age of nine. Caucasian and Hispanic boys begin developing around the age of 10.

“The causes and public health implications of this apparent shift in US boys to a lower age of onset for the development of secondary sexual characteristics in US boys needs further exploration,” the authors write.

Indeed, while some may shrug off the trend of earlier maturation, it’s actually pretty significant, as it can affect both physical and psychological health in a number of ways, including raising the future risk for hormone-related cancers. Girls who enter puberty earlier are at an increased risk of breast cancer, for example, due to the early rise in estrogen.

The trend also raises serious questions about environmental factors spurring this development. Lead researcher Marcia Herman-Giddens told CNN Health3:

“The changes are too fast. Genetics take maybe hundreds, thousands of years. You have to look at something in the environment. That would include everything from (a lack of) exercise to junk food to TV to chemicals.”

Environmental Chemicals a Likely Factor

Scientists have brought forth a number of potential explanations for the rising rates of early puberty, but one that deserves special attention is environmental chemicals, and particularly xeno-estrogens, i.e. estrogen-mimicking chemicals. These compounds behave like steroid hormones and can alter the timing of puberty, and affect disease risk throughout life.

In adults, xeno-estrogens have been linked to decreased sperm quality, stimulation of mammary gland development in men, disrupted reproductive cycles and ovarian dysfunction, obesity, cancer and heart disease, among numerous other health problems.

We’re surrounded by hormone-disrupting chemicals these days, many of which are plasticizers. Bisphenol A (BPA) for example, is an industrial petrochemical that acts as a synthetic estrogen, and can be found plastics and tin can linings, in dental sealants, and on cash-register receipts. Three years ago, laboratory tests commissioned by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) detected BPA in the umbilical cord blood of 90 percent of newborn infants tested — along with more than 230 other chemicals!

In September 2010, Canada declared BPA a toxic substance, but to date no other country has followed suit, although BPA has been banned in baby bottles in Canada, Europe and the United States. Frustratingly, the US FDA has denied the request to ban BPA, however many American companies have voluntarily removed the chemical from their products, in response to consumer demand. So, if you check around, you can find a lot of BPA-free products.

However, buyer beware, as it recently came to light that some companies are simply replacing the offending BPA with another less known but equally toxic chemical called bisphenol-S (BPS)! Not only does BPS appear to have similar hormone-mimicking characteristics to BPA, but research suggests it is actually significantly less biodegradable, and more heat-stable and photo-resistant, than BPA.

10 Top Offenders that Can Disrupt Your Hormones

Beside BPA and BPS, other top offenders you should be aware of, and watch out for, include:

Phthalates, a group of industrial chemicals used to make plastics like polyvinyl chloride (PVC) more flexible and resilient. They’re also one of the most pervasive of the endocrine disrupters, found in everything from processed food packaging and shower curtains to detergents, toys and beauty products like nail polish, hair spray, shampoo, deodorants, and fragrances. Exposure to phthalates can lead to incomplete testicular descent in fetuses, reduced sperm counts, testicular atrophy or structural abnormality and inflammation in newborns. Fluoride, which is added to the majority of public water supplies in the United States. Research has shown that animals treated with fluoridehad lower levels of circulating melatonin, as reflected by reduced levels of melatonin metabolites in the animals’ urine. This reduced level of circulating melatonin was accompanied — as might be expected — by an earlier onset of puberty in the fluoride-treated female animals.
Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), a likely carcinogen found in grease- and water-resistant coatings and non-stick cookware. Methoxychlor and Vinclozin, an insecticide and a fungicide respectively, have been found to cause changes to male mice born for as many as four subsequent generations after the initial exposure.
Nonylphenol ethoxylates (NPEs). Known to be potent endocrine disrupters, these chemicals affect gene expression by turning on or off certain genes, and interfere with the way your glandular system works. Bovine growth hormones (rBGH) commonly added to commercial dairy have been implicated as a contributor to premature adolescence.
MSG, a food additive that’s been linked to reduced fertility. Non-fermented soy products, which are loaded with hormone-like substances.
DDE (a breakdown product of the pesticide DDT) PCBs

New Concern: Metalloestrogens

Recent research has also confirmed the existence of a previously unknown class of cancer-causing estrogen-mimicking compounds: “metalloestrogens.” The following metals, which are added to thousands of consumer products, including vaccines, have been identified as being capable of binding to cellular estrogen receptors and then mimicking the actions of physiological estrogens:4

Aluminum Antimony Arsenite Barium Cadmium Chromium Cobalt
Copper Lead Mercury Nickel Selenite Tin Vanadate

Tips to Reduce Exposure to Hormone-Disrupting Substances

While young girls and boys may show obvious signs of exposure to hormone-disrupting substances via early puberty, other signals are more insidious and may not show up until a disease is already present. You can cut back on your family’s exposure to these dangerous chemicals by following these 12 guidelines. Pregnant women and women who may become pregnant should pay particular attention to reducing their exposure as much as possible to protect the health of their unborn baby:

  1. Eat whole, preferably organic, produce and free-range, organic meats to reduce your exposure to added hormones, pesticides and fertilizers. Also avoid milk and other dairy products that contain the genetically engineered recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH or rBST)
  2. Eat mostly raw, fresh foods. Processed, prepackaged foods (of all kinds) are a major source of soy and chemicals such as BPA and phthalates.
  3. Store your food and beverages in glass rather than plastic, and avoid using plastic wrap and canned foods (which are often lined with BPA-containing liners).
  4. Use glass baby bottles and BPA-free sippy cups for your little ones.
  5. Make sure your baby’s toys are BPA-free, such as pacifiers, teething rings and anything your child may be prone to suck on.
  6. Only use natural cleaning products in your home to avoid phthalates.
  7. Switch over to natural brands of toiletries such as shampoo, toothpaste, antiperspirants and cosmetics. The Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep Database5 is a great resource for finding personal care products that are free of phthalates, parabens and other potentially dangerous chemicals.
  8. Avoid using artificial air fresheners, dryer sheets, fabric softeners or other synthetic fragrances.
  9. Replace your non-stick pots and pans with ceramic or glass cookware.
  10. When redoing your home, look for “green,” toxin-free alternatives in lieu of regular paint and vinyl floor coverings.
  11. Replace your vinyl shower curtain with one made of fabric.
  12. Avoid non-fermented soy, especially if you’re pregnant. Also, never use soy-based infant formula.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/12/19/precocious-puberty.aspx

Puberty Before Age 10: A New ‘Normal’?

By Dr. Mercola

Reaching puberty is a rite of passage that we’ve all been through, but children nowadays are reaching it earlier than ever before — a trend that has both health experts and parents alarmed.

Precocious puberty, which is the appearance of secondary sex characteristics like pubic hair or breast growth before age 8, or the onset of menarche before age 9, impacts at least 1 in 5,000 U.S. children, and the rate is on the rise.1

Even in the last three decades, children (particularly girls) are maturing at younger and younger ages (precocious puberty is 10 times more common in girls than in boys).

Puberty, Once the Norm at Age 15, Now Occurring in 7-, 8- and 9-Year-Olds

In the 19th century the onset of menstruation occurred around the age of 15. Now the average age of the first period, or menarche, is around 12. The time during and before puberty is one of rapid development and change, which is why even months matter when it comes to first menstruation. Before menstruation, girls will show beginning signs of development, such as breast “budding” and growth of pubic hair.

These signs are now becoming unsettlingly common among 7-, 8- and 9-year-old girls, to the extent that many health care providers, rather than labeling these children with a diagnosis that something is wrong, have simply changed the definition of what’s normal… but is it really “normal” for girls to mature at such a young age?

There are more questions than answers in the case of precocious puberty, but what is certain is that girls are developing earlier than they have even 10, 20 or 30 years ago.

One study in the journal Pediatrics revealed that by age 7, 10 percent of white girls, 23 percent of black girls, 15 percent of Hispanic girls and 2 percent of Asian girls had started developing breasts, with researchers noting:2

“The proportion of girls who had breast development at ages 7 and 8 years, particularly among white girls, is greater than that reported from studies of girls who were born 10 to 30 years earlier.”

Early puberty can set the stage for emotional and behavioral problems, and is linked to lower self-esteem, depression, eating disorders, alcohol use, earlier loss of virginity, more sexual partners and increased risk of sexually transmitted diseases. There is also evidence that suggests these girls are at increased risk of diabetes, heart disease and other cardiovascular diseases, as well as cancer, later in life.

Environmental Chemicals a Likely Factor

Scientists have brought forth a number of potential explanations for the rising rates of early puberty, but one that deserves special attention is environmental chemicals, and particularly estrogen-mimicking, “gender-bending” chemicals that easily leach out of the products that contain them, contaminating everything they touch, including food and beverages.

As the featured New York Times article reported:

” …animal studies show that the exposure to some environmental chemicals can cause bodies to mature early. Of particular concern are endocrine-disrupters, like “xeno-estrogens” or estrogen mimics. These compounds behave like steroid hormones and can alter puberty timing.

For obvious ethical reasons, scientists cannot perform controlled studies proving the direct impact of these chemicals on children, so researchers instead look for so-called “natural experiments,” one of which occurred in 1973 in Michigan, when cattle were accidentally fed grain contaminated with an estrogen-mimicking chemical, the flame retardant PBB.

The daughters born to the pregnant women who ate the PBB-laced meat and drank the PBB-laced milk started menstruating significantly earlier than their peers.”

This is an extreme case, but the truth is we are all part of a “secret experiment” of sorts, because hormone-disrupting chemicals are all around us. Bisphenol A (BPA), an industrial petrochemical that acts as a synthetic estrogen, is found in our plastics and our tin can linings, in dental sealants and on cash-register receipts. Laboratory tests commissioned by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) detected BPA in the umbilical cord blood of 90 percent of newborn infants tested — along with more than 230 other chemicals. As written in the New York Times:

“One concern, among parents and researchers, is the effect of simultaneous exposures to many estrogen-mimics, including the compound BPA, which is ubiquitous.”

No one knows what happens when a developing fetus or young child is exposed to hundreds of chemicals, many of which mimic your body’s natural hormones and can trigger major changes in your body even as an adult, let along during the most rapid and vulnerable periods of development (in utero and as a young child).

BPA is, unfortunately, but one example. Others include phthalates, a group of industrial chemicals used to make plastics like polyvinyl chloride (PVC) more flexible and resilient. They’re also one of the most pervasive of the endocrine disrupters, found in everything from processed food packaging and shower curtains to detergents, toys and beauty products like nail polish, hair spray, shampoo, deodorants, and fragrances.

Other environmental chemicals like PCBs and DDE (a breakdown product of the pesticide DDT) may also be associated with early sexual development in girls. Both DDE and PCBs are known to mimic, or interfere with, sex hormones.

Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), found in non-stick cookware, also falls into this dangerous category, as does fluoride, which is added to the majority of public water supplies in the United States. Research showed that animals treated with fluoride had lower levels of circulating melatonin, as reflected by reduced levels of melatonin metabolites in the animals’ urine. This reduced level of circulating melatonin was accompanied — as might be expected — by an earlier onset of puberty in the fluoride-treated female animals.

These Chemicals Also Increase Your Risk of Cancer and Heart Disease

If a chemical is capable of influencing the rate of your reproductive development, it stands to reason that it would be capable of influencing other hormone-sensitive growth processes as well, and this is indeed the case.

For instance, new research has detected the presence of paraben esters in 99 percent of breast cancer tissues sampled.3 Parabens are chemicals with estrogen-like properties, and estrogen is one of the hormones involved in not only puberty but also the development of breast cancer. They are widely used in household products such as:

Deodorants and antiperspirants Shampoos and conditioners Shaving gel Toothpaste
Lotions and sunscreens Make-up / cosmetics Pharmaceutical drugs Food additives

Recent research has also confirmed the existence of a previously unknown class of cancer-causing estrogen-mimicking compounds: metals. Yes, a broad range of metals have been shown to act as “metalloestrogens” with the potential to add to the estrogenic burden of the human body, thereby increasing the risk of breast cancer and also possibly early puberty. The following metals, which are added to thousands of consumer products, including vaccines, have been identified as being capable of binding to cellular estrogen receptors and then mimicking the actions of physiological estrogens:4

Aluminum Antimony Arsenite Barium Cadmium Chromium Cobalt
Copper Lead Mercury Nickel Selenite Tin Vanadate

Data from a long-running British health survey, meanwhile, has shown that if you have high levels of the chemical BPA in your urine, you may be at an increased risk of heart disease. Some of the greatest concern surrounds early-life, in utero exposure to BPA, which can lead to chromosomal errors in your developing fetus, causing spontaneous miscarriages and genetic damage. But evidence is also very strong showing these chemicals are influencing adults and children, too, and leading to decreased sperm quality, early puberty, stimulation of mammary gland development, disrupted reproductive cycles and ovarian dysfunction, obesity, cancer and heart disease, among numerous other health problems.

Avoiding Hormone-Disrupting Substances is Crucial for Children and Adults Alike

While young girls may show obvious signs of exposure to hormone-disrupting substances via early puberty, other signals are more insidious and may not show up until a disease is already present. Here are 11 measures you can implement right away to help protect yourself and your children from common toxic substances that could cause precocious puberty and other long-term health problems:

  1. As much as possible, buy and eat organic produce and free-range, organic meats to reduce your exposure to added hormones, pesticides and fertilizers. Also avoid milk and other dairy products that contain the genetically engineered recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH or rBST)
  2. Eat mostly raw, fresh foods. Processed, prepackaged foods (of all kinds) are a major source of soy and chemicals such as BPA and phthalates.
  3. Store your food and beverages in glass rather than plastic, and avoid using plastic wrap and canned foods (which are often lined with BPA-containing liners).
  4. Use glass baby bottles and BPA-free sippy cups for your little ones.
  5. Make sure your baby’s toys are BPA-free, such as pacifiers, teething rings and anything your child may be prone to suck on.
  6. Only use natural cleaning products in your home to avoid phthalates.
  7. Switch over to natural brands of toiletries such as shampoo, toothpaste, antiperspirants and cosmetics. The Environmental Working Group has a great safety guide to help you find personal care products that are free of phthalates, parabens and other potentially dangerous chemicals.
  8. Avoid using artificial air fresheners, dryer sheets, fabric softeners or other synthetic fragrances, many of which can also disrupt your hormone balance.
  9. Replace your non-stick pots and pans with ceramic or glass cookware.
  10. When redoing your home, look for “green,” toxin-free alternatives in lieu of regular paint and vinyl floor coverings.
  11. Replace your vinyl shower curtain with one made of fabric.
  12. Avoid non-fermented soy, especially if you’re pregnant and in infant formula.

Theo Colburn’s book Our Stolen Future is a great source for further investigation as it identifies the numerous ways in which environmental pollutants are disrupting human reproductive patterns. I believe it is one of the best resources on this topic and highly recommend it.

Vitamin D Also Linked to Early Puberty

It has been suggested that girls who live closer to the equator start puberty at a later age than girls who live in Northern regions. Since this indicates a potential connection with sun exposure, researchers decided to investigate whether vitamin D was, in fact, related. Upon measuring vitamin D levels in 242 girls aged 5-12, researchers from the University of Michigan School of Public Health found that those who were deficient were twice as likely to start menstruation during the study period as those with higher levels.5

Specifically, among the vitamin-D-deficient girls, 57 percent started their period during the study, compared to 23 percent with adequate vitamin D. However, researchers defined adequate vitamin D as ≥ 30 ng/mL, which is actually still a deficiency state! For optimal health, vitamin D levels should be a minimum of 50 ng/mL, which means the number of vitamin-D-deficient girls with early puberty was probably much higher than the study reported.

The earlier you enter puberty, the longer you’re exposed to elevated levels of the female hormone estrogen, which is a risk factor for certain cancers such as breast cancer. This has been the primary “link” between early puberty and cancer that has been explored, but it’s important to understand that vitamin D deficiency is also a major risk factor for cancer, heart disease and many other diseases. So it could be that some of the increased risks that come from early puberty are linked to low vitamin D levels.

What You Should Know About Obesity, Stress and Exercise

Obesity (which exposes girls to more estrogen because estrogen is both stored and produced in fat tissue) is another likely factor in early puberty. The New York Times reported:

“As Robert Lustig, a professor of clinical pediatrics at the University of California, San Francisco’s Benioff Children’s Hospital, explains, fatter girls have higher levels of the hormone leptin, which can lead to early puberty, which leads to higher estrogen levels, which leads to greater insulin resistance, causing girls to have yet more fat tissue, more leptin and more estrogen, the cycle feeding on itself, until their bodies physically mature.”

As for stress, this, too, has been linked to early puberty, with girls whose parents divorced when they were between 3- and 8-years-old significantly more likely to experience precocious puberty. “Evolutionary psychology offers a theory,” the New York Times reports. “A stressful childhood inclines a body toward early reproduction; if life is hard, best to mature young. But such theories are tough to prove.” Interestingly, in addition to avoiding environmental chemicals, obesity and stress, and optimizing your vitamin D, regular exercise appears to be one of the best known ways to help prevent early puberty.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/04/16/early-precocious-puberty.aspx

The Terrible Truth About Plastic You Never Knew

plasticAs plastic ages or is exposed to heat or stress, it can release trace amounts of some of its ingredients. Of particular concern are bisphenol-a (BPA), used to strengthen some plastics, and phthalates, used to soften others.

These chemicals are used in hundreds of household items; BPA is in everything from baby bottles to can linings, while phthalates are found in children‘s toys as well as vinyl shower curtains. They enter your body through the food, water and bits of dust you consume, or are simply absorbed through your skin.

BPA and phthalates are endocrine disrupters, which mimic hormones. Estrogen and other hormones in relatively tiny amounts can cause vast changes, so researchers worry that BPA and phthalates could do the same, especially in young children.

To cut down on your exposure, avoid plastic bottles and toys labeled with the numbers 3 or 7, which often contain BPA or phthalates, and canned foods, especially those with acidic contents like tomatoes. You should also avoid heating plastic in microwaves.
Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2008/07/31/the-terrible-truth-about-plastic-you-never-knew.aspx

Signs of COVID Injection Failure Mount

In recent weeks, a number of signs have emerged indicating the COVID-19 injections cannot put an end to COVID-19 outbreaks. In the July 15, 2021, video report above, Dr. John Campbell reviews data coming out of the U.K. On a side note, I do not agree with everything Campbell says in this video, such as promoting mask wearing, for example. It’s his data review that is of interest here.

As noted in the video, as of July 15, 87.5% of the adult population in the U.K. had received one dose of COVID-19 “vaccine” and 67.1% had received two. Yet symptomatic cases among partially and fully “vaccinated” are now suddenly on the rise, with an average of 15,537 new infections a day being detected, a 40% increase from the week before.

Meanwhile, the daily average of new symptomatic cases among unvaccinated is 17,588, down 22% from the week before. This suggests the wave among unvaccinated has peaked and that natural herd immunity has set in, while “vaccinated” individuals are becoming more prone to infection.

U.K. hospitals are confirming double-injected patients are part of the patient population being treated for active COVID infection, and two cities have issued public warnings to their residents, letting them know they may end up in the hospital even if they’ve been double-injected against COVID-19.

“There are currently 15 patients in hospital with COVID across the Trust; last month there were none,” The Yorkshire Post reported1 July 9, 2021. An undisclosed number of them had received two doses of COVID “vaccine.”

“The message I would like to share with you all is that some of their patients are double vaccinated,” Heather McNair, chief nurse at York and Scarborough Teaching Hospitals, told the Post.2

“This is a disease that can still affect you and still make you poorly when you are double vaccinated. We have got a ward at the moment full of COVID patients in our hospital and that is not going away anytime soon.”

While the number of hospitalized COVID patients doubled in a single week, the total number was still well below the number reported in January 2021 — a statistic Amanda Bloor, accountable officer for the NHS North Yorkshire Clinical Commissioning Group, takes as proof that the injection program is “having the anticipated impact around reducing the risk of death and reducing serious illness.”

COVID Surges in Countries with Highest Injection Rates

I wouldn’t be so quick to assume lower hospitalization rates in the middle of summer are a sign that the injections are having a positive impact. We also have data3 showing that countries with the highest COVID injection rates are also experiencing the greatest upsurges in cases, while countries with the lowest injection rates have the lowest caseloads. This trend “is worrying me quite a bit,” Dr. Robert Malone, inventor of the mRNA vaccine technology, said in a July 16, 2021, Tweet.4

daily new confirmed covid 19 cases per million people
share of people who received at least one dose of covid 19 vaccine

You can view more data in this thread, posted by Corona Realism.5 Cyprus, where more than 51% of residents have received the jab, now has the highest case count in the world. Interestingly, the outbreak on the British Navy ships — which I’ll cover further below — occurred shortly after a stopover in Cyprus.6

cyprus covid cases vs vaccinated population

Bhutan offers an interesting glimpse into the effects of mass COVID “vaccination”. They managed to get 64% of residents injected in just one week, starting March 27, 2021, and almost immediately, there was a rapid uptick in cases.

In the first graph below, you see the extraordinarily rapid injection rate in Bhutan, going from zero to 64% in a matter of days. In the second graph, you can see the effect on cases in the weeks that followed. They went from near-zero cases at the outset of the injection campaign, to a high of more than 400 cases per million in the weeks following.

share of people who received at least one dose vaccine
biweekly confirmed covid 19 cases per million people

Case Counts Lowest in Low-‘Vaxxed’ Nations

On the flipside, we see the lowest number of positive COVID tests congregated in nations that also have the lowest rates of COVID “vaccine” uptake. While it’s not a 100% clear-cut correlation, it is a trend, and we also have to remember that the PCR tests have issues that complicate any attempt at data analysis.

biweekly changed in confirmed covid 19 cases

The main problem is that if you run the PCR test at too-high a cycle threshold (CT), you end up with an inordinate number of false positives.7,8,9 The CT refers to the point in the test where a positive result is obtained. A CT of 35 or higher will give you a 97% false positive rate.10

For maximum accuracy, you’d have to use a CT of 17.11 It’s unclear what all these countries are using, but it’s unlikely they’re using a CT below 20 as a matter of routine. This means most case counts around the world will be falsely elevated.

This is particularly true for unvaccinated individuals in the U.S., as their tests are recommended to be run at a CT of 40, whereas patients that have received a COVID injection will have their COVID tests run at a CT below 28. This makes it appear as though the case rate is higher among the unvaccinated, when in reality it’s just an artifact from highly biased testing and few of these falsely positive “cases” are actually sick.

Looking at the hospitalization rate for confirmed COVID-19 in the U.S.,12 we see that the number of people sick enough to require medical attention is nowhere near what it was during the winter months of 2021, and since only 5.9% of American adults had been injected with two doses as of February 21, 2021,13 we can conclude that the injections did not cause this rapid decline in hospitalizations.

new admissions of patients with confirmed covid 19 united states

The best explanation for the decline in both cases and hospitalizations after the rollout of COVID shots is the emergence of natural herd immunity from previous infections.

In a July 12, 2021, STAT News article,14 Robert M. Kaplan, Professor Emeritus at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, calculated that by April 2021, the natural immunity rate was above 55% in 10 U.S. states, and in most of those same states, new infections were in rapid decline as early as the end of 2020, at a time when only a tiny fraction of the population had received their shots.

CDC Doesn’t Track All Breakthrough Cases

We must also remember that the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are artificially driving down case rates, hospitalization rates and death rates for “vaccinated” Americans by selectively tracking breakthrough cases. They only track and report breakthrough cases where the patient is hospitalized or dies.15 They do not count mild cases, even if they have a positive test result.

A number of media outlets have expressed concerns about this biased tracking and reporting. As noted in Harvard Health,16 the CDC’s strategy prevents us from ascertaining whether one injection is more or less effective than another. It can also hide manufacturing problems and prevent us from determining whether timing of the second dose might have a bearing on effectiveness, as well as a number of other things.

Business Insider17 pointed out that not tracking all breakthrough cases makes it more difficult to determine how dangerous the Delta variant really is. NPR expresses a similar view, stating that “Critics argue the strategy could miss important information that could leave the U.S. vulnerable, including early signs of new variants that are better at outsmarting the vaccines.”18

Even Complete ‘Vaccine’ Coverage Won’t Stop Infections

July 14, 2021, BBC News reported19 100 fully injected crewmembers had tested positive onboard the British Defense aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth. It’s unclear whether any of them actually have symptoms. According to British defense secretary Ben Wallace, mitigation efforts include mask wearing, social distancing and a track and trace system. He made no mention of actual treatment for acute infection.

Other warships are also reporting onboard outbreaks, although Wallace did not offer any details about them. The fleet is currently in the Indian Ocean and plans to continue the 28-week deployment, with Japan as their destination. BBC News said the queen and prime minister had been onboard the flagship shortly before it sailed.

This case offers a sobering view into the effectiveness of these gene modifying shots, as the HMS Queen Elizabeth now has a case rate of 1 in 1620 — the highest case rate recorded so far, that I know of. Yet 100% of the crew has been double-injected. This tells you that the vaccine-induced herd immunity narrative is a fairytale. These injections apparently cannot prevent COVID-19 even if 100% of a given population gets them!

Israeli Data Indicate Pfizer ‘Vaccine’ Failure

Data from Israel also offer a dismal view of COVID-19 injections. Israel used Pfizer’s mRNA injection exclusively, so this gives us a good idea of its effectiveness. Overall, it looks like an abysmal failure, as a majority of serious cases and deaths are now occurring among those injected with two doses. The following is a screenshot of graphs posted on Twitter.21

The red is unvaccinated, yellow refers to partially “vaccinated” and green fully “vaccinated” with two doses. The charts speak for themselves.

new hospitalizations
new severe covid 19 patients
deaths trend

Overall, it doesn’t appear as though COVID-19 gene modification injections have the ability to effectively eliminate COVID-19 outbreaks, and this makes sense, seeing how it’s mathematically impossible for them to do so.

The four available COVID shots in the U.S. provide an absolute risk reduction between just 0.7% and 1.3%.22,23 (Efficacy rates of 67% to 95% all refer to the relative risk reduction.) Meanwhile, the noninstitutionalized infection fatality ratio across age groups is a mere 0.26%.24 Since the absolute risk that needs to be overcome is lower than the absolute risk reduction these injections can provide, mass vaccination simply cannot have a favorable impact.

CDC Tries to Hide COVID Jab Death Toll

They can, however, cause unnecessary deaths among otherwise healthy individuals. Tragically, the CDC is doing everything it can to hide just how great that death toll is. In what appears to be a deliberate attempt at deception, the CDC “rolled back” its July 19, 2021, adverse events report to statistics from the previous week. I’ll explain. Take note of the specific dates and death totals in each of the following excerpts. The July 13 report reads as follows:25

“Reports of death after COVID-19 vaccination are rare. More than 334 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines were administered in the United States from December 14, 2020, through July 12, 2021. During this time, VAERS received 6,079 reports of death (0.0018%) among people who received a COVID-19 vaccine.”

The original July 19 report (saved on Wayback) initially read as follows:26

“Reports of death after COVID-19 vaccination are rare. More than 338 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines were administered in the United States from December 14, 2020, through July 19, 2021. During this time, VAERS received 12,313 reports of death (0.0036%) among people who received a COVID-19 vaccine.”

Please note, the death toll more than doubled in a single week. That original July 19 report was then changed to this. The date on the report is still July 19:27

“Reports of death after COVID-19 vaccination are rare. More than 334 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines were administered in the United States from December 14, 2020, through July 13, 2021. During this time, VAERS received 6,079 reports of death (0.0018%) among people who received a COVID-19 vaccine.”

At a time when accuracy and transparency is of such critical importance for informed consent, it’s beyond shocking to see the CDC engage in this kind of deception. Yet here we are. We’re now living in a world where crucial public health data is being manipulated at every turn. For this reason, looking at larger trends such as those reviewed above may offer a more dependable picture of what the real-world consequences of these shots are.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2021/07/27/covid-vaccine-failure.aspx

Delta Variant: Natural Immunity 700% Better Than the Vaccine

A recurring theme being broadcast by public health officials and the media is that vaccine-induced immunity is superior to that of natural immunity, but preliminary data from Israel — a country with more than 60% of its population vaccinated against COVID-191 — is showing otherwise.

Data presented to the Israeli Health Ministry July 13, 2021,2 revealed that, of the more than 7,700 COVID-19 cases reported since May 2021, only 72 occurred in people who had previously had COVID-19 — a rate of less than 1%. In contrast, more than 3,000 cases — or approximately 40% — occurred in people who had received a COVID-19 vaccine. As reported by Israeli National News:

“With a total of 835,792 Israelis known to have recovered from the virus, the 72 instances of reinfection amount to 0.0086% of people who were already infected with COVID.

By contrast, Israelis who were vaccinated were 6.72 times more likely to get infected after the shot than after natural infection, with over 3,000 of the 5,193,499, or 0.0578%, of Israelis who were vaccinated getting infected in the latest wave.”

In other words, those who were vaccinated were nearly 700% more likely to develop COVID-19 than those who had natural immunity from a prior infection — and this is largely in response to the Delta variant, which has led to increasing infections in Israel.3

Rate of COVID Reinfection: 0.27%

It’s extremely rare to get reinfected by COVID-19 after you’ve already had the disease and recovered. How rare? Researchers from Ireland conducted a systematic review including 615,777 people who had recovered from COVID-19, with a maximum duration of follow-up of more than 10 months.4

“Reinfection was an uncommon event,” they noted, “… with no study reporting an increase in the risk of reinfection over time.” The absolute reinfection rate ranged from 0% to 1.1%, while the median reinfection rate was just 0.27%.5,6,7

Another study revealed similarly reassuring results. It followed 43,044 SARS-CoV-2 antibody-positive people for up to 35 weeks, and only 0.7% were reinfected. When genome sequencing was applied to estimate population-level risk of reinfection, the risk was estimated at 0.1%.8

Again, there was no indication of waning immunity over seven months of follow-up, with the researchers concluding, “Reinfection is rare. Natural infection appears to elicit strong protection against reinfection with an efficacy >90% for at least seven months.”9

Another study from Israel also had researchers questioning “the need to vaccinate previously-infected individuals,” after their analysis showed similar risks of reinfection among those with vaccine-induced or natural immunity. Specifically, vaccination had an overall estimated efficacy of preventing reinfection of 92.8%, compared to 94.8% for natural immunity acquired via prior infection.10

Why Natural Immunity Is Superior

Speaking with journalist Daniel Horowitz, pathologist Dr. Ryan Cole explained that natural immunity produces broad immunity that can’t be matched by vaccination:11

“A natural infection induces hundreds upon hundreds of antibodies against all proteins of the virus, including the envelope, the membrane, the nucleocapsid, and the spike. Dozens upon dozens of these antibodies neutralize the virus when encountered again.

Additionally, because of the immune system exposure to these numerous proteins (epitomes), our T cells mount a robust memory, as well. Our T cells are the ‘marines’ of the immune system and the first line of defense against pathogens. T cell memory to those infected with SARSCOV1 is at 17 years and running still.”

In 2020 it was reported that people who had recovered from SARS-CoV — a virus that is genetically closely related to SARS-CoV-2 and belongs to the same viral species — maintained significant levels of neutralizing antibodies at least 17 years after initial infection.12 This also suggests that long-term natural immunity against SARS-CoV-2 should be expected.13

With vaccination, however, Israeli14 data suggest that those who were vaccinated early on, in January 2021, are becoming susceptible to the virus, suggesting its efficacy may wane after about six months.

This sentiment was echoed by Pfizer’s head of medical research and development, Mikael Dolsten, who said “after six months, there may be risk of infection with the expected decline of antibodies.” Pfizer is seeking emergency use authorization for a third booster dose of its COVID-19 vaccine in the U.S.15

According to Cole, part of the reason for waning vaccine-induced immunity is because “we mount an antibody response to only the spike and its constituent proteins” and “as the virus preferentially mutates at the spike, these proteins are shaped differently and antibodies can no longer ‘lock and key’ bind to these new shapes.”16

Natural COVID Immunity May Last a Lifetime

It was initially suggested that natural COVID-19 immunity may be short-lived. This was based on early data on SARS-CoV-2, which found that antibody titers declined rapidly in the first months after recovery from COVID-19. According to a team of researchers from the Washington University School of Medicine, however, if you’ve had COVID-19 — even a mild case — you’re likely to be immune for life, as is the case with recovery from many infectious agents.17

According to senior author of the study Ali Ellebedy, Ph.D., an associate professor of pathology and immunology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, “It’s normal for antibody levels to go down after acute infection, but they don’t go down to zero; they plateau.”18

The researchers found a biphasic pattern of antibody concentrations against SARS-CoV-2, in which high antibody concentrations were found in the acute immune response that occurred at the time of initial infection. The antibodies declined in the first months after infection, as should be expected, then leveled off to about 10% to 20% of the maximum concentration detected.

When a new infection occurs, cells called plasmablasts provide antibodies, but when the virus is cleared, longer lasting memory B cells move in to monitor blood for signs of reinfection.19 Bone marrow plasma cells (BMPCs) also exist in bones, acting as “persistent and essential sources of protective antibodies.”20Ellebedy even said the protection provided by naturally acquired immunity is likely to continue “indefinitely”:21

“These [BMPC] cells are not dividing. They are quiescent, just sitting in the bone marrow and secreting antibodies. They have been doing that ever since the infection resolved, and they will continue doing that indefinitely.”

In another explanation of why antibody levels drop after initial infection — but it’s not an indication of waning immunity — Cole told Horowitz:22

“Yes, our antibody levels drop over time, however, scientifically, the memory B cells that make antibodies have been proven to be present in our lymph nodes and bone marrow. They are primed and ready to produce a broad array of antibodies upon viral pre-exposure.

It would be physiologically, energetically impossible to maintain high antibody levels to all the pathogens we are constantly exposed to, and we would look like the ‘swollen Stay-Puft marshmallow man’ of lymph nodes, constantly, if the immune system were required to do that.”

Why Are Natural Immunity, Early Treatment Protocols Censored?

Dr. Peter McCullough is an internist, cardiologist, epidemiologist and full professor of medicine at Texas A&M College of Medicine in Dallas. He also has a master’s degree in public health and is known for being one of the top five most-published medical researchers in the U.S. and is the editor of two medical journals.

In our recent interview, he discussed the importance of early treatment for COVID-19, and the potential motivations behind the suppression of safe and effective treatments. He also told Horowitz, “[T]here has never been a confirmed second [COVID-19] infection beyond 90 days with similar or worse cardinal symptoms and confirmed PCR/Antigen/Sequencing test.”23

In August 2020, McCullough’s landmark paper “Pathophysiological Basis and Rationale for Early Outpatient Treatment of SARS-CoV-2 Infection” was published online in the American Journal of Medicine.24 The follow-up paper, titled “Multifaceted Highly Targeted Sequential Multidrug Treatment of Early Ambulatory High-Risk SARS-CoV-2 Infection (COVID-19),” was published in Reviews in Cardiovascular Medicine in December 2020.25

While early treatment options were available when the pandemic began, patients were simply told to stay home and do nothing, until the infection had progressed to the point where they were having trouble breathing. Once at the hospital, COVID patients were routinely placed on mechanical ventilation — a practice that was quickly discovered to be lethal.

But McCullough has been an outspoken advocate for early treatment for COVID, as have other pioneering doctors like those behind the MATH+ protocol. He believes the end goal in suppressing early treatment was to secure the rollout of a mass vaccination campaign.

Indeed, effective treatments like ivermectin — a broad-spectrum antiparasitic that also has anti-inflammatory activity — have shown remarkable success in preventing and treating COVID-19,26 but they continue to be ignored in favor of more expensive, and less effective, treatments and mass experimental vaccination.27

At this point, however, with effective treatments available, the documented high survival rate of COVID-1928 and knowledge that if you’ve had COVID-19, you’re already likely immune to further infection, the rationale for getting vaccinated is faltering. Even the Delta variant has a very low 0.2% case fatality rate in the U.K., which drops to 0.03% in those under 50.29

Natural Infection Will ‘Burn Out All Variants’

If you choose to get a COVID-19 vaccine, you’re participating in an unprecedented experiment with an unapproved gene therapy, of which the benefits may not outweigh the risks, especially if you’ve already had COVID-19 and are already likely immune.

As noted by Horowitz, “Natural infection is the only phenomena that will ultimately burn out all variants, and the entire focus should be on getting seniors and other vulnerable people early treatment the minute they feel symptoms and even a prophylactic regimen of ivermectin … when appropriate.”30

Meanwhile, McCullough pointed out that by getting vaccinated, you’re setting yourself up for a very narrow immunity — much unlike the broad naturally acquired immunity — that could be easily overwhelmed by a more virulent virus. As he said in our interview that I previously mentioned:

“What I know based on the literature right now is there could be a risk given the narrow spectrum of immunologic coverage … There could be such a narrow immunity that more virulent strain could overwhelm it …

The most recent variant is the Delta variant. That’s the weakest of all the variants and the most easily treatable. But if someone, let’s say a nefarious entity created a more virulent virus, it could easily be designed to scoot past a very narrow immunity that hundreds of millions, if not billions of people, will be keyed to with narrow immunity.”


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2021/07/27/covid-19-delta-variant-natural-immunity.aspx

Why Do You Continue to Eat When You’re Full?

cheeseburger, overeat

The premise that hunger makes food look more appealing is a widely held belief.

Prior research studies have suggested that the hunger hormone ghrelin, which your body produces when it’s hungry, might act in your brain to trigger this behavior.

New studies suggest that ghrelin might also work in your brain to make you keep eating “pleasurable” foods when you’re already full.

Scientists previously have linked increased levels of ghrelin to intensifying the rewarding or pleasurable feelings that can be obtained from cocaine or alcohol.

Researchers observed how long mice would continue to poke their noses into a hole in order to receive a pellet of high-fat food. Animals that didn’t receive ghrelin gave up much sooner than the ones that did receive ghrelin.

Humans and mice share the same type of brain-cell connections and hormones, as well as similar architectures in the “pleasure centers” of the brain.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2010/01/16/why-do-people-continue-to-eat-when-they-are-full.aspx

President Biden Demands Mercola Be Banned from Social Media

In a July 16, 2021, White House press briefing,1 press secretary Jen Psaki admitted the Biden Administration is violating the First Amendment by alerting social media companies to posts and accounts it believes is peddling “misinformation” about COVID injections. When asked by a reporter to expound on how this flagging works, Psaki said:

“Well, I would say first, it shouldn’t come as any surprise that we’re in regular touch with social media platforms — just like we’re in regular touch with all of you and your media outlets — about areas where we have concern, information that might be useful, information that may or may not be interesting to your viewers …

So we are regularly making sure social media platforms are aware of the latest narratives dangerous to public health that we and many other Americans seeing … And we work to engage with them to better understand the enforcement of social media platform policies.

So let me give you an example, just to illustrate it a little bit. The false narrative that remains active out there about COVID-19 vaccines causing infertility … which has been disproven time and time again.

This is troubling, but a persistent narrative that we and many have seen, and we want to know that the social media platforms are taking steps to address it. That is inaccurate, false information … And that is an example of the kind of information that we are flagging or raising …

So a couple of the steps that … could be constructive for the public health of the country are providing for Facebook or other platforms to measure and publicly share the impact of misinformation on their platform and the audience it’s reaching … with all of you to create robust enforcement strategies that bridge their properties and provide transparency about rules.

You shouldn’t be banned from one platform and not others if you — for providing misinformation out there.”

In her July 15, 2021, press briefing,2 Psaki cited “The Disinformation Dozen” report3 by the Center for Countering Digital Hate (CCDH), which claims 65% of anti-vaccine content on Facebook and Twitter comes from 12 individuals, including yours truly.

According to Facebook, they have removed 18 million posts with “COVID misinformation,” and connected more than 2 billion users to “reliable information,” meaning state-sanctioned information. The Biden administration is not satisfied with these already staggering numbers and thinks more must be done. Specifically, as Psaki mentions, they want the “disinformation dozen” banned from all available social media platforms.

Psaki Disinforms Public About Vaccine Approval Status

In that same July 16 press briefing, Psaki also referred to the COVID shots as “approved,” and having “gone through the gold standard of the FDA approval process.”4 She said:

“The public has a right to know … And we’re dealing with a life-or-death issue here, and so everybody has a role to play in making sure there’s accurate information … It’s clear there are more [steps] that can be taken …

On the foreign government piece … the State Department’s Global Engagement Center has found that Russia and China have promoted their own vaccines through messaging that undermines Western origin vaccine development programs. So, you know, that is more than just competition about vaccines.

The risk and impact there is that this type of information magnifies, you know, the risk of potential side effects associated with Western vaccines. This is what they’re — what the information — some of this misinformation is doing — and misleads the public by falsely alleging that mRNA vaccines are untested and, thus, risky, even though many of them are approved and have gone through the gold standard of the FDA approval process.”

This is verifiably false. All currently available COVID injections are authorized for emergency use only. They are not licensed or approved. At present, the emergency use authorization applies to adults and children as young as 12.5Those two terms, “authorized for emergency use” and “approved for use,” are not interchangeable.

Biden Administration Launches Illegal Attack on Free Speech

One wonders whether the admission that they’re flagging posts and accounts they don’t like so that social media companies can remove them is an attempt at normalizing illegal government overreach. It comes across that way.

But let’s be clear. This kind of corporate-government collusion to censor free speech violates the U.S. Constitution and is illegal. As noted by Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas in an April 5, 2021, ruling6 in which he weighed in on the ability of social media giants to control free speech:

“The government cannot accomplish through threats of adverse government action what the Constitution prohibits it from doing directly … Under this doctrine, plaintiffs might have colorable claims against a digital platform if it took adverse action against them in response to government threats.”

Even if the Biden administration is not threatening social media companies with adverse action if they refuse to censor at the government’s whim, the government cannot use private companies to do something on its behalf that it is not legally allowed to do on its own.

Put another way, it is illegal for government officials to pressure private companies into censoring free speech on their behalf or at their request, since they as government officials do not themselves have the right to infringe on free speech.

The same goes for attorneys general that have publicly called for social media companies to ban posts and deplatform accounts,7 as well as the surgeon general, Dr. Vivek Murthy, who recently stated that an “epidemic of misinformation and disinformation” is putting people’s lives at risk.8,9 He too has illegally called for “technology and social media companies to address the way misinformation and disinformation spread on their platforms.”

To that end, he even released his own 22-page report,10 which advises addressing “misinformation super-spreaders” and using educational institutions, from elementary school settings through college, as well as private funders, to “monitor and address” false and misleading information. The Rockefeller Foundation wasted no time in responding by announcing $13.5 million in new funding to help with the effort.

Again, these government officials have the right to their own opinion. But they do not have the right to censor other people’s opinion and/or information, least of all published research. And since they do not have the Constitutional right to censor Americans, they also cannot ask private companies to do it for them.

Government officials are also breaking several laws by incentivizing Americans into participating in medical experimentation, and collaborating with private companies to require personnel to participate in medical experimentation. It’s truly remarkable what’s happening, and the fact that so many laws are blatantly broken in an effort to get a needle in every arm suggests something other than public health interest is at play.

Why Is Truth About Natural Immunity Banned?

I’m still on Twitter, and in recent times, the only post deleted was one in which I indicated that naturally-infected people developed robust and long-lasting immunity, and that health officials need to be honest and admit that this immunity is very powerful.11

To my post, I had attached a paper12 published in the peer-review journal Nature. However, Twitter does censor me in a different sort of way by posting a detailed warning to users who click on any links to Mercola.com that I post on Twitter that visiting my site “may be unsafe” — which is completely false.

Recovered COVID patients have robust immunity even if their symptoms were mild and subsequent antibody count is low, because latent antibody-producing cells called memory B cells for SARS-CoV-2 still exist in their bone marrow. This was shown in another Nature study.13,14 When they encounter the SARS-CoV-2 virus again, those memory cells start churning out new antibodies, which will raise the level again to eliminate the virus.

The National Institutes of Health’s website15 even declares that recovery from COVID-19 provides “lasting immunity,” and that the immune systems of more than 95% of people who recovered from COVID-19 had “at least 3 out of 5 immune-system components that could recognize SARS-CoV-2 up to eight months post-infection.” This research was funded in part by the NIAID, and published in the journal Science.16

Clearly, the naturally-acquired immunity narrative poses a significant threat to the mass injection campaign. The information poses no threat to public health. Quite the contrary. The more people know about this, the less fearful they will feel. If they are the ones who recovered, they will know they now have good protection. If the former COVID patient is a family member or friend, they can be at ease with those people, knowing they pose no infection risk.

If it were really about keeping people safe from infection, natural immunity would be accepted and people would be encouraged to look at studies showing most places on earth have already achieved natural immunity. But when it comes to SARS-CoV-2, they insist even those who already have natural immunity should get a COVID shot. Why? They’re already immune! And there’s no added benefit to getting a COVID injection if you have antibodies.

Researchers at Cleveland Clinic looked at this issue, concluding that people who had tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 at least 42 days prior to vaccination reaped no additional protection from the jabs, over and above their natural immunity.17,18

Zero Benefit and All Risk for Recovered COVID Patients

Meanwhile, the COVID injection may trigger an adverse immune response in those who have already been infected with the virus, putting them at significantly increased risk of injury and death.19 As explained by Dr. Hooman Noorchashm, a cardiac surgeon and patient advocate:20

“Viral antigens persist in the tissues of the naturally infected for months. When the vaccine is used too early after a natural infection, or worse during an active infection, the vaccine force activates a powerful immune response that attacks the tissues where the natural viral antigens are persisting. This, I suggest, is the cause of the high level of adverse events and, likely deaths, we are seeing in the recently infected following vaccination.”

In early March 2021, researchers at King’s College confirmed the validity of Noorchashm’s concerns. They found people who have already had COVID-19 are three times more likely to experience vaccine side effects than those who have not been exposed to the virus, and this appears true for both mRNA and DNA versions of the vaccine.21

Using data from the Kings College ZOE app, which has logged more than 700,000 vaccinations, 35.7% of those given the Pfizer injection who had previously been infected reported side effects, compared to just 12.2% of those not previously infected.

Looking at the AstraZeneca vaccine, 52.7% of previously infected had side effects, compared to 31.9% of those who had not been previously infected. Despite these documented risks, the FDA continues to recommend the COVID shot for those with natural immunity.

Vaccination Versus Natural Immunity

Public Health England has published data showing only 44 of 6,614 previously infected persons tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 infection a second time.22 Of those 44, only 15 developed symptoms, so it’s quite possible the remainder were simply false positives.

Either way, the risk of reinfection after recovering from a bout of COVID-19 seems rare, and the risk of reinfection is far lower than the risk of infection faced by those who are fully “vaccinated.” As reported by Israel National News, July 13, 2021:23

“Coronavirus patients who recovered from the virus were far less likely to become infected during the latest wave of the pandemic than people who were vaccinated against COVID …

Health Ministry data on the wave of COVID outbreaks which began this May show that Israelis with immunity from natural infection were far less likely to become infected again in comparison to Israelis who only had immunity via vaccination.

More than 7,700 new cases of the virus have been detected during the most recent wave starting in May, but just 72 of the confirmed cases were reported in people who were known to have been infected previously — that is, less than 1% of the new cases. Roughly 40% of new cases — or more than 3,000 patients — involved people who had been infected despite being vaccinated.

With a total of 835,792 Israelis known to have recovered from the virus, the 72 instances of reinfection amount to 0.0086% of people who were already infected with COVID.

By contrast, Israelis who were vaccinated were 6.72 times more likely to get infected after the shot than after natural infection, with over 3,000 of the 5,193,499, or 0.0578%, of Israelis who were vaccinated getting infected in the latest wave.”

Impossible for COVID Jabs to Have Favorable Impact

In a world of differing opinions and eternally evolving science, who can claim rights to the truth? The White House press secretary seems to think the Biden administration should have dibs on the truth, while in the same breath disinforming the public by referring to the COVID shots as FDA approved with “gold standard” safety studies behind them.

Health agencies and their officials also disinform the public every time they claim vaccine-induced immunity is better than natural immunity, as this runs counter to everything we’ve ever learned about virology. It may be accurate for some diseases, but it certainly cannot be said for COVID-19. There’s far more data suggesting the COVID jab is an unnecessary risk that provides negligible benefit.

Remember, healthy adults under 50, teens and children have a less than 1% chance of hospitalization and death from COVID-19, so they don’t have a medical need for this experimental injection. The overall noninstitutionalized infection fatality ratio is a mere 0.26%. Below 40 years of age, it’s 0.01%.24Those odds simply do not make a strong argument for mass injection with an experimental gene modification tool.

What’s more, data show the absolute risk reduction for all four COVID injections is between 0.7% and 1.3%.25,26 (Efficacy rates of 67% to 95% all refer to the relative risk reduction.) Since the absolute risk that needs to be overcome is lower than the benefit that these injections can provide, mass vaccination simply cannot have a favorable impact on the population. It’s mathematically impossible.

So, while government, public health leadership and pro-vaccine advocates insist we must follow the science, they themselves are doing anything but. For a year and a half, they’ve insisted pandemic measures like lockdowns, mask wearingand gene modification injections are the only way forward, despite mountains of evidence against each and every one of those strategies.

So, it’s not about science. If it were, they’d produce studies that overwhelmingly refute the counternarrative and prove demonstrable benefits. But they don’t. Instead, they unleash personal attacks and smear campaigns to discourage people from listening to anything that doesn’t come out of their propaganda machine.

Biden Administration Wants to Monitor Your Private Texts

The Biden Administration has now gone so far as to propose SMS carriers fact check private text messages to make sure Americans don’t share inconvenient facts to friends and family.

Ironically, White House spokesperson Kevin Munoz told Politico that this move was part of the administration’s “steadfast commitment to keep politics out of the vaccination efforts.”27 Backlash was swift, from legislators and private individuals alike, but time will tell whether it was enough to make the White House reconsider.28

It’s also not about public health, because if it were, they’d accept natural immunity, and they wouldn’t be breaking the law at every turn. No, it’s all about getting a needle in every arm — science, logic and common sense be damned. The question is why.

Many of my articles over the past year have detailed evidence pointing to this mass injection campaign being a tool to usher in a new world order of surveillance, worldwide poverty and the complete removal of medical and personal freedoms.

The Biden administration’s call to censor — through public utilities and private companies — anyone who shares information about risks and the lack of benefit of these COVID injections is clearly part of that agenda, and must be rejected on ethical, legal and Constitutional grounds.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2021/07/26/biden-demands-mercola-be-banned-from-social-media.aspx

Weekly Health Quiz: Vaccines, Viruses and Silicon Valley

1 Which of the following types of vaccines are currently in the pipeline?

  • Reverse transcriptase vaccines designed to permanently alter DNA of animals that harbor pathogens that can mutate and threaten human health
  • Transmissible vaccines for humans
  • mRNA influenza vaccines for humans and transmissible vaccines for animals
    Several different mRNA seasonal influenza vaccines have already entered into human trials. Researchers are also working on transmissible vaccines to control viral reservoirs in animals. Learn more.
  • Plant-based vaccines for animals and humans

2 What drives and speeds up mutations in viruses?

  • Being unvaccinated
  • Having no previous immunity
  • Nothing can affect the natural mutations of viruses
  • Evolutionary pressure in the form of vaccines
    Just as antibiotics breed resistance in bacteria, vaccines put evolutionary pressure on viruses to speed up mutations and create more virulent and dangerous variants. Learn more.

3 Using antibiotics unnecessarily could harm your immune system via your:

  • Mitochondria, which are off-site targets of certain antibiotics and play a role in antibacterial and antiviral immune responses
    Your mitochondria are responsible for cellular energy production and also play a role in antibacterial and antiviral immune responses — and they’re an off-site target of certain antibiotics, which are known to inhibit mitochondrial activity, DNA synthesis and biogenesis. Learn more.
  • Blood-brain barrier
  • Mucosal membranes
  • Skin cells

4 If Silicon Valley gets its way, the future of medicine will be based on:

  • Mind-body-spirit connections
  • Transhumanism, gene editing and artificial intelligence
    Silicon Valley has been pushing to transform the health care system into a system based on telemedicine and personalized care through the use of artificial intelligence (AI). Google is heavily involved in this movement. Learn more.
  • Bioelectric medicine akin to acupuncture
  • Food as medicine

5 Which of the following statements is true?

  • The CDC does not hold any patents
  • The CDC holds patents relating to life-saving medications only, as they must be price-controlled
  • Dr. Anthony Fauci funded research at University of North Carolina Chapel Hill to create an infectious replication-defective coronavirus specifically targeted for human lung cells
    Hundreds of patents show SARS-CoV-2 is a manmade virus that has been tinkered with for decades. Much of the research was funded by NIAID under the direction of Dr. Anthony Fauci. In 1999, Fauci funded research at University of North Carolina Chapel Hill to create “an infectious replication-defective coronavirus” specifically targeted for human lung epithelium. This appears to be the virus that became known as SARS. Learn more.
  • Dr. Anthony Fauci is the director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

6 What is the leading cause of death among child-bearing women worldwide?

  • Childbirth
  • COVID-19
  • Lack of vaccinations
  • HIV/AIDS
    The leading cause of death among child-bearing women in the world is HIV/AIDS. Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), which primarily affects women, is basically AIDS without the HIV. It’s an immune dysfunction, and can be traced back to contaminated vaccines and blood products that have been used for decades. Learn more.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2021/07/26/week-192-health-quiz.aspx

Could Fermented Foods Help Your Arthritis?

Recent research1 has shown that fermented foods not only can improve gut microbiome diversity, but lower the inflammatory response in your body that affects conditions like rheumatoid arthritis (RA). While I was still in active practice, I was passionate about treating people with RA.

In fact, I treated over 3,000 people with this disease, 80% to 85% of whom experienced significant recovery, if not remission. One of the hallmark symptoms of RA is pain in the proximal joints of the hands or feet.

These are the joints that are closer to the palm of your hand as opposed to joints further out in your fingers. RA is also often symmetrical, which means it affects the same joints in both hands or both feet. The condition is far less common than osteoarthritis.

In joints that are affected by RA, the lining becomes inflamed from an autoimmune and inflammatory response that literally causes your body’s own immune system to attack itself.2 This can trigger chronic pain, loss of balance and deformities.

Unlike osteoarthritis, which damages the cartilage between the bones in your joints,3 RA can also affect other tissues outside of the joints, such as the eyes, heart and lungs.4 Many people with RA experience fatigue, low-grade fever and symptoms that vary from day to day.

In a search of health care claim databases5 from 2004 to 2014, researchers found the prevalence of RA in the U.S. population ranged from 0.41 to 0.54%. This varied substantially in each year and by gender and age. However, the data also revealed that the rate appeared to increase during that period, which affected a conservative estimate of up to 1.36 million adults by 2014.

A later study in 20196 indicated there has been a global rise in prevalence and incidence of RA. At the regional level, it appeared to be highest in the high-income areas of North America, the Caribbean and Western Europe.

The lowest rates were found in Western sub-Saharan Africa, southeast Asia and Oceania. The most recent, 2021 study7 offers an insight into reducing the inflammatory response and, potentially, the damage caused by RA.

Fermented Foods Lower Levels of Inflammatory Proteins

Researchers from Stanford Medicine published their data in the journal Cell,8 in which they evaluated 19 inflammatory protein biomarkers from 36 healthy adults who were randomly assigned to eating either fermented or high-fiber foods over a 10-week intervention period.9 Both diets have shown an ability to impact gut microbiome in past scientific study.

In this clinical trial, researchers sought to evaluate how two microbiota-targeted diet interventions could modulate the gut microbiome.10 They found the gut microbiome and immune system effects on the participants were different.11The scientists measured stool and blood samples collected during a three-week period before the intervention diet started, during the intervention and during a four-week period after the diet ended.

The data revealed that eating foods like kefir, fermented cottage cheese, vegetable brine drinks, kombucha tea and kimchi in other fermented vegetables increase the overall microbial diversity in a dose-dependent manner.12 The primary outcome of the study was a cytokine response score, which remained unchanged.13

However, the data also showed that a high fermented food diet increased microbial community diversity and decreased inflammatory markers,14particularly interleukin-615 that has been linked to conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, chronic stress and Type 2 diabetes.16

In contrast to the reduction of inflammatory markers in a group eating fermented foods, those eating a high-fiber diet that consisted of legumes, seeds, whole grains, fruits, nuts and vegetables showed no change in inflammatory markers or microbial diversity. Erica Sonnenburg Ph.D., was on the research team and said in a press release:17

“We expected high fiber to have a more universally beneficial effect and increase microbiota diversity. The data suggest that increased fiber intake alone over a short time period is insufficient to increase microbiota diversity.

It is possible that a longer intervention would have allowed for the microbiota to adequately adapt to the increase in fiber consumption. Alternatively, the deliberate introduction of fiber-consuming microbes may be required to increase the microbiota’s capacity to break down the carbohydrates.”

The researchers concluded that fermented foods could be a valuable strategy to counteract a decreasing microbial diversity and increasing inflammatory response that is ubiquitous in Western Society.18

Additionally, another of the researchers postulated that other means of targeting the gut microbiome may include probiotics, prebiotics and dietary interventions that could affect bacterial health, and therefore your immune health.19

Fermentation Creates Healthy Bioavailable End Products

Historically, the primary reason for fermenting foods was to preserve it. Over time, many cultures incorporated these foods into their daily diet and were shared with the world. For example, Japanese natto, Korean kimchi and German sauerkraut are popular in many areas outside the respective places of origin.20

The process is controlled by microorganisms and the type of food being fermented. There’s a growing consensus that the fermentation process has nutritional benefits by transforming the food and forming bioavailable end products, including an increase in density of vitamins.21,22

When you consumer fermented foods, live cultures give you the primary benefits. Unfortunately, fermented foods in the grocery store don’t usually contain live cultures. Instead, before packaging, they may be baked, pasteurized, filtered or smoked. During the fermentation process, biologically active peptides are formed. In one paper published in Nutrients, the authors wrote:23

“Fermentation was found to increase antioxidant activity of milks, cereals, fruit and vegetables, meat and fish. Anti-hypertensive peptides are detected in fermented milk and cereals. Changes in vitamin content are mainly observed in fermented milk and fruits.

Fermented milk and fruit juice were found to have probiotic activity. Other effects such as anti-diabetic properties, FODMAP [fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols] reduction, and changes in fatty acid profile are peculiar of specific food categories.”

According to authors of a paper published in Clinical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition,24 the bacteria in fermented foods produce peptides have multiple health benefits. The authors say:

“Among these peptides, conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), which have shown the ability to lower blood pressure, exopolysaccharides exhibit prebiotic properties, bacteriocins show anti-microbial effects, sphingolipids have anti-carcinogenic and anti-microbial properties, and bioactive peptides exhibit anti-oxidant, anti-microbial, opioid antagonist, anti-allergenic, and blood pressure lowering effects …

As a result, fermented foods provide many health benefits such as antioxidant, anti-microbial, anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory, anti-diabetic and anti-atherosclerotic activity.”

Gut Bacteria Affect Mental Health and Depression

Scientific evidence has demonstrated that your gut microbiome plays a leading role in your mental health. Researchers have found there is a bidirectional communication between your gut microbiome and your central nervous system.25 It’s called the gut-brain axis and mounting evidence has demonstrated that dysbiosis is associated with triggering mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression.

Some have coined the term “psychobiome” to describe the crucial connection between your gut bacteria and how you think, feel and act.26 A small start-up lab in Cambridge, Massachusetts, is researching human stool samples with a focus on brain drugs.

As Science Magazine reports, the small company hopes to capitalize on the mounting scientific evidence from animal studies and epidemiological studies that your gut microbiome is linked to health conditions such as anxiety, Alzheimer’s disease and autism.

As of 2020, the company had developed “one of the world’s largest collections of human gut microbes” over a short five years. When talking to reporters from Science, the company CEO said the initial targets were depression, insomnia and visceral pain conditions that are typical of irritable bowel syndrome.27

Two types of gut bacteria, in particular Coprococcus and Dialister bacteria, have been shown to be “consistently depleted” in individuals diagnosed with clinical depression. According to the authors of a study published in the April 2019 issue of Nature Microbiology:28

“Surveying a large microbiome population cohort (Flemish Gut Flora Project, n = 1,054) with validation in independent data sets, we studied how microbiome features correlate with host quality of life and depression.

Butyrate-producing Faecalibacterium and Coprococcus bacteria were consistently associated with higher quality of life indicators. Together with Dialister, Coprococcus spp. were also depleted in depression, even after correcting for the confounding effects of antidepressants.”

Other studies have also identified microbial profiles associated with better or worse mental health conditions. For example, a 2016 research study29 found the relative abundance of Actinobacteria was higher and Bacteroidetes was lower in depressed individuals compared to healthy controls.

Another study30 in 2015 found patients diagnosed with major depressive disorder had higher amounts of Bacteroidetes, Proteobacteria and Actinobacteria, and lower amounts of Firmicutes than healthy controls.

Kimchi Is a Fermented Food That Can Help You Get Vitamin K2

One of the benefits from the fermenting process is that it can improve the nutritional value of a particular food. For example, kimchi has antioxidant properties associated with lipid-lowering cardiovascular benefits, antimicrobial action, immune system activity and anti-atherogenic activity.31

Fermented plants also provide high concentrations of vitamin K2.32 Vitamin K is a fat-soluble vitamin that is an important element for your heart health. In fact, results from the Rotterdam study33 published in 2004 looked at causes of diseases in the elderly, and determined that those who had consumed the highest amount of vitamin K2 were less likely to experience severe calcification in their arteries and die from heart disease.

K2 is also important for bone health and osteoporosis prevention. However, vitamin K doesn’t store well in your body, so it’s depleted quickly if you don’t get it regularly from your food. But what kinds of foods are the best ones to get the vitamin K2 you need? One thing the Rotterdam study made clear was there is a difference between vitamin K1 and K2 content in foods.

While K1 was found to be present in high amounts in green leafy vegetables such as spinach, kale, broccoli and cabbage, K2 was only present in high amounts in fermented foods. K2, or menaquinone, is produced by bacteria in your gut and can be found in some animal products, a few plants34 such as spinach, radish leaves and spring onions, and fermented foods, particularly kimchi and cheeses.

Although natto is a soy product that is also high in K2, I don’t promote soy products because most of the soy sold and eaten in the West is genetically modified and grown with highly toxic herbicides.

Tips to Making Fermented Food at Home

If you have RA or other chronic ailments that are rooted in inflammation, your diet is an important first step to facilitate healing. In “Rheumatoid Arthritis Medication Implicated in Death of Popular Musician — How Natural Treatment Options May Help You Avoid the Same Fate,” I outline many of the recommendations that I used for patients who had RA when I was in practice. Among those recommendations is eating fermented foods.

It’s becoming more popular to eat fermented foods at home, yet preparing them has largely become a lost art. Probiotic rich foods, like fermented vegetables and homemade yogurt, will boost the population of beneficial bacteria, which then reduces potentially pathogenic colonies.

Since many of the yogurts sold in grocery store shelves are fruit flavored and sweetened with sugar, they don’t help promote an overall healthy gut flora. To make yogurt at home you only need a high-quality starter culture and raw, grass-fed milk. You’ll find simple step-by-step instructions in “Benefits of Homemade Yogurt Versus Commercial.”

One of the few soy products that I recommend is natto, if you can obtain the soybeans organically grown. Natto is a fermented soy you can easily make at home. The fermentation process removes the disadvantages of eating raw or cooked soy, so you’re left with a dish that’s filled with probiotics and nutrients. If you haven’t tried natto before, I urge you to give this “Fresh, Homemade Natto Recipe” a try.

You can also experiment with fermenting just about any vegetable. Some of the more popular are cucumbers (pickles) and cabbage (sauerkraut). Once you have the basic method down it’s not difficult. In the video below, Julie and I review how to do this. As I discuss in “Tips for Fermenting at Home,” there are several steps that you can do to make the whole process a little easier.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2021/07/26/fermented-foods-can-help-with-arthritis.aspx

Mass Death of Birds and Fish: Is There a Cover Up?

Dead FishPuzzled by the mass deaths of birds and fish in Alabama? It’s also happening elsewhere, across the Eastern and Southern U.S. and around the world — Gizmodo has a handy map of all the U.S. events.

The Activist Post offers some theories. Before you read them, however, bear in mind what Yahoo News has to say about the subject:

“… [M]ass die-offs happen all the time and usually are unrelated … Federal records show they happen on average every other day somewhere in North America. Usually, we don’t notice them and don’t try to link them to each other …

And there have been much larger die-offs than the 3,000 blackbirds in Arkansas. Twice in the summer of 1996, more than 100,000 ducks died of botulism in Canada.”

Here are the theories listed by the Activist Post:

Mainstream Explanations: These have included lightning, hail, mid-air collision, power lines, and New Year fireworks for the birds, and a disease for the fish. But this seems like a heck of a coincidence, and where are the roasted birds from a lightning strike?

Meteor showers: During this period of intense seasonal meteor shower, some people reported hearing sonic booms in the area that might have been an indication of a local shock wave.

New Madrid Fault Line: Could it be related to the recent earthquake activity along a fault line that runs along the mid-eastern section of the U.S.? Could it have dispersed pollutants into the water and atmosphere?

Government testing: Only certain species have been affected, but within the entire region. And some reports have indicated that the organs of the birds were liquefied — could this implicate species-specific bio-weapons?

GMOs: There are other die-offs are happening across other species, such as bees and bats. Some think they could be poisoned by genetically modified plants.

Geoengineering: Could spraying in the area have caused this?

HAARP: Both birds and fish navigate in highly coordinated ways. Could the HAARP array off in Alaska have short-circuited their navigation systems? Or is it the result of electromagnetic pollution for other human devices?

Scalar Weapons: Some wonder if the cause is directed energy beam weapons deployed via satellite.

Project Blue Beam: Another theory is a sound generator weapon.

Geomagnetic and other Earth changes: The magnetic pole is moving. Add to this a dwindling magnetosphere and falling oxygen levels, plus an increase in sun activity and magnetic storms.

Update: A Wisconsin lab has apparently determined that the birds, at least, died of blunt force trauma.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/01/25/the-10-leading-theories-for-dead-birds-and-fish.aspx

Breast Cancer Rates Fell When Regular Hormone Therapy Decreased

breast cancer awareness ribbonBreast cancer rates dropped by half in tandem with the discontinuation of hormone replacement therapy, according to a study published online in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. The study was reported in the Telegraph in the United Kingdom.

The Telegraph said:

“Dr Prithwish De, of the Canadian Cancer Society, and colleagues, found that use of HRT dropped from 12.7 per cent in 2002 to 4.9 per cent in 2004.

During the same period breast cancer rates dropped by 9.6 per cent even though the same number of women were having mammography tests.

Between 2004 and 2006 use of HRT remained stable at around five per cent of women aged 50 to 59 but breast cancer rates began to increase again.

Dr De wrote: ‘The results support the hypothesised link between the use of hormone replacement therapy and invasive breast cancer incidence and indicate that the sharp decline in breast cancer incidence in 2002 is likely explained by the concurrent decline in the use of hormone replacement therapy among Canadian women.’”

The study’s authors said these numbers support existing evidence of the link between HRT and breast cancer.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2010/10/21/breast-cancer-rates-fell-when-regular-hormone-therapy-decreased.aspx

Leptin: This Hormone Makes Counting Calories Irrelevant

By Ron Rosedale, M.D.

healthy diet, leptinIt is amazing how the little twists and turns of researchers can have such a profound impact on what we generally come to realize as “scientific truth.” Let me share a recent fascinating example of how this impacted one of the most powerful hormones in your body.

The Ob mouse is a strain of mouse that has a genetic mutation that makes it obese and unhealthy. It has been used for many years as a model of obesity to do research on, though the reason that it was obese had eluded scientists.

This changed when, in 1994, Jeffrey Friedman discovered that this mouse lacked a previously unknown hormone called leptin, and when it was injected with leptin it became thin, vibrant, and very healthy within weeks. This made headlines around the world, “the cure for obesity found” and pharmaceutical companies started tripping over themselves with trillion dollar signs in their eyes to be the first to genetically manufacture leptin on a large-scale.

This did not last long. When people were tested for leptin, it was found that, unlike the Ob mouse, they did not lack leptin; on the contrary almost all overweight and obese people have excess leptin.

These people were leptin resistant and giving extra leptin did little good.

The financial disappointment was extreme and scientists working for pharmaceutical companies said that leptin wasn’t important anymore since they could not find a drug to control it, and therefore the industry couldn’t make money on it. To make big money in medicine one needs a patent and this generally means remedies which are not commonly or easily available — that are not natural.

This illustrates two extremely unfortunate principles in modern medicine; only those therapies that will make lots of money (generally for the pharmaceutical industry or hospitals), ever get pursued and then taught to physicians (since most of medical education after medical school takes place by drug reps), and these therapies, almost by definition, will be unnatural.

This inhibition of extremely important knowledge is not only unfortunate, it is deadly, and is exemplified by how few people, including doctors, know anything about leptin, though I would consider it to be the most important chemical in your body that will determine your health and lifespan.

Two Hormones that are Vital for Optimal Health

Each and every one of us is a combination of lives within lives. We are made up of trillions of individual living cells that each must maintain itself. Even more significantly, the cells must communicate and interact with each other to form a republic of cells that we call our individual self.

Our health and life depends on how accurately instructions are conveyed to our cells so that they can act in harmony. It is the communication among the individual cells that will determine our health and our life.

The communication takes place by hormones. Arguably therefore, the most important molecules in your body that ultimately will decide your health and life are hormones.

Many would say that genes and chromosomes are the most important molecules, however once born your genes pretty much just sit there; hormones tell them what to do. Certainly, the most important message that our cells receive is how and what to do with energy, and therefore life cannot take place without that.

The two most important hormones that deliver messages about energy and metabolism are insulin and leptin.

Metabolism can roughly be defined as the chemistry that turns food into life, and therefore insulin and leptin are critical to health and disease. Both insulin and leptin work together to control the quality of your metabolism (and, to a significant extent, the rate of metabolism).

Insulin works mostly at the individual cell level, telling the vast majority of cells whether to burn or store fat or sugar and whether to utilize that energy for maintenance and repair or reproduction. This is extremely important as we shall see, for on an individual cell level turning on maintenance and repair equates to increased longevity, and turning up cellular reproduction can increase your risk of cancer.

Leptin, on the other hand, controls the energy storage and utilization of the entire republic of cells allowing the body to communicate with the brain about how much energy (fat) the republic has stored, and whether it needs more, or should burn some off, and whether it is an advantageous time nutritionally-speaking for the republic –you– to reproduce or not.

What Exactly is Leptin?

Leptin is a very powerful and influential hormone produced by fat cells that has totally changed the way that science (real science, outside of medicine) looks at fat, nutrition, and metabolism in general.

Prior to leptins discovery, fat was viewed as strictly an ugly energy storage depot that most everyone was trying to get rid of. After it was discovered that fat produced the hormone leptin (and subsequently it was discovered that fat produced other very significant hormones), fat became an endocrine organ like the ovaries, pancreas and pituitary, influencing the rest of the body and, in particular, the brain.

Leptin, as far  as science currently knows, is the most powerful regulator that tells your brain what to do about life’s two main biological goals: eating and reproduction. Your fat, by way of leptin, tells your brain whether you should be hungry, eat and make more fat, whether you should reproduce and make babies, or (partly by controlling insulin) whether to “hunker down” and work overtime to maintain and repair yourself.

I believe I could now make a very convincing and scientifically accurate statement that that rather than your brain being in control of the rest of your body, your brain is, in fact, subservient to your fat — and leptin.

In short, leptin is the way that your fat stores speak to your brain to let your brain know how much energy is available and, very importantly, what to do with it. Therefore, leptin may be “on top of the food chain in metabolic importance and relevance to disease.

How Leptin Regulates Your Weight

It has been known for many years that fat stores are highly regulated. It appeared that when one tried to lose weight the body would try to gain it back. This commonly results in “yo-yo” dieting and in scientific circles one talks about the “set point” of weight. It has long been theorized that there must be a hormone that determines this.

Science points now to leptin as being that hormone.

In our ancestral history, it was advantageous to store some fat to call upon during times of famine. However, it was equally disadvantageous to be too fat. For most of our evolutionary history, it was necessary to run, to obtain prey and perhaps most importantly, to avoid being prey. If a lion was chasing a group of people it would most likely catch and eliminate from the gene pool the slowest runner and the one who could not make it up the tree — the fattest one.

Thus, fat storage had to be highly regulated and this is done, as is any regulation, through hormones, the most significant being leptin.

If a person is getting too fat, the extra fat produces more leptin which is supposed to tell the brain that there is too much fat stored, more should not be stored, and the excess should be burned.

Signals are therefore sent to an area of the brain in the hypothalamus (the arcuate nucleus) to stop being hungry, to stop eating, to stop storing fat and to start burning some extra fat off.

Controlling hunger is a major (though not the only) way that leptin controls energy storage. Hunger is a very powerful, ancient, and deep-seated drive that, if stimulated long enough, will make you eat and store more energy. Asking somebody to not eat, to voluntarily restrict calories even though they are hungry, is asking the near impossible. The only way to eat less in the long-term is to not be hungry, and the only way to do this is to control the hormones that regulate hunger, the primary one being leptin.

How Leptin Resistance Leads to Disease

More recently, it has been found that leptin not only changes brain chemistry, but can also rewire the very important areas of the brain that control hunger and metabolism. I’m not aware of any other chemical in the body that has been shown to accomplish this “mind bending” event.

This has really caught the attention of the scientific community. Further studies have now shown that leptin, or more correctly the inability of the body to properly hear leptins signals, in other words leptin resistance, plays significant if not primary roles in heart disease, obesity, diabetes, osteoporosis, autoimmune diseases, reproductive disorders, and perhaps the rate of aging itself.

It helps to control the brain areas that regulate thyroid levels and the sympathetic nervous system which also has huge impacts on blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, osteoporosis and aging. Leptin’s stimulatory effect on the sympathetic nervous system also helps determine the adrenal stress response including cortisol levels.

Leptin May Be Even More Critical Than Insulin

The importance of insulin in health and disease is becoming well-known. Aside from its obvious role in diabetes, it plays a very significant role in hypertension, cardiovascular disease, and cancer.

I was one of the first to speak publicly to doctors about insulin’s critical role in health well over a decade ago (see the transcribed talk Insulin and its Metabolic Effects) and I am even more convinced now.

However leptin may even supersede insulin in importance, for new research is revealing that in the long run glucose and therefore insulin levels may be largely determined by leptin.

It had been previously believed that the insulin sensitivity of muscle and fat tissues were the most important factor in determining whether one would become diabetic or not. Elegant new studies are showing that the brain and liver are most important in regulating a person’s blood sugar levels especially in type 2 or insulin resistant diabetes.

It should be noted again that leptin plays a vital role in regulating your brains hypothalamic activity which in turn regulates much of a person’s autonomic functions; those functions that you don’t necessarily think about but which determines much of your life (and health) such as body temperature, heart rate, hunger, the stress response, fat burning or storage, reproductive behavior, and newly discovered roles in bone growth and blood sugar levels.

Another very recent study reveals leptin’s importance in directly regulating how much sugar that the liver manufactures via gluconeogenesis.

Many chronic diseases are now linked to excess inflammation such as heart disease and diabetes. High leptin levels are very pro-inflammatory, and leptin also helps to mediate the manufacture of other very potent inflammatory chemicals from fat cells that also play a significant role in the progression of heart disease and diabetes. It has long been known that obesity greatly increased risk for many chronic diseases including heart disease and diabetes, but no one really knew why.

Leptin appears to be the missing link.

Could Leptin Also Affect  How Fast You Age?

Leptin will not only determine how much fat you have, but also where that fat is put. When you are leptin resistant you put that fat mostly in your belly, your viscera, causing the so-called “apple shape” that is linked to much disease. Some of that fat permeates the liver, impeding the liver’s ability to listen to insulin, and further hastening diabetes.

 

Leptin plays a far more important role in your health than, for instance, cholesterol, yet how many doctors measure leptin levels in their patients, know their own level, even know that it can be easily measured, or even what it would mean?

Leptin appears to play a significant role in obesity, heart disease, osteoporosis, autoimmune diseases, inflammatory diseases and cancer. These are the so-called chronic diseases of aging.

Could it perhaps affect the rate of aging itself?

The Biology of Aging

Scientists who study the biology of aging are beginning to look at that question. There are two endeavors, two drives that life has been programmed, since its inception, to succeed at and to succumb to. These are to eat and to reproduce.

If every one of our ancestors had not succeeded in eating and reproducing we would not be here, and this paper would be moot. All of your morphological characteristics from your hair to your toenails are designed to help you succeed at those two activities. That is what nature wants us to do. Nature’s purpose is not necessarily to have you live a long and healthy life, but to perpetuate the instructions, the genes that tell how to perpetuate life.

Even so-called “paleolithic” diets, though undoubtedly far better than what is generally eaten today, were not necessarily designed by nature to help us live a long and healthy life but, at best, to maximize reproduction. Nature appears to not care much about what happens to us after we have had a sufficient chance to reproduce. That is why we die.

But there are clues as to how to live a long and healthy life. And that brings us once again to fat–and leptin.

It takes energy to make babies; lots of it. Energy was and always will be a coveted commodity. Nature, and evolution, hates wasting it. It makes no sense to try and make babies when it appears that there’s not enough energy available to successfully accomplish that goal.

Instead, it seems that virtually all living forms can switch gears and direct energy away from reproduction and towards mechanism that will allow it to “hunker down” for the long haul and thus be able to reproduce at a future more nutritionally opportune time. In other words nature will then let you live longer to accomplish its primary directive of reproduction.

It does this by up regulating maintenance and repair genes that increase production of intracellular antioxidant systems, heat shock proteins (that help maintain protein shape), and DNA repair enzymes. This is what happens when you restrict calories (without starvation) in animals, and that has been shown convincingly for 70 years to greatly extend the life span of many dozens of species. Thus, there is a powerful link between reproduction, energy stores, and longevity.

Genetic studies in simple organisms have shown that that link is at least partially mediated by insulin (which in simple organisms also functions as a growth hormone), and that when insulin signals are kept low, indicating scarce energy availability, maximal lifespan can be extended— a lot; several hundred percent in worms and flies.

Glucose is an ancient fuel used even before there was oxygen in the atmosphere, for life can burn glucose without oxygen; it is an anaerobic fuel. The use of fat as fuel came later, after life in the form of plants soaked the earth in oxygen, for you cannot burn fat without oxygen.

The primary source of energy stores in people by far is fat, as many unfortunately are all too aware of. The primary signal that indicates how much fat is stored is leptin, and it is also leptin that allows for reproduction, or not.

It has long been known that women with very little body fat, such as marathon runners, stop ovulating. There is not enough leptin being produced to permit it. Paradoxically, the first pharmaceutical use of leptin was recently approved to give to skinny women to allow them to reproduce.

Leptin’s Role in Improving Your Metabolism

Leptin also is instrumental in regulating body temperature, partly by controlling the rate of metabolism via its regulation of the thyroid.

 

Metabolic rate and temperature has long been connected with longevity. Almost all mechanisms that extend lifespan in many different organisms result in lower temperature. Flowers are refrigerated at the florist to extend their lifespan. Restricting calories in animals also results in lower temperature, reduced thyroid levels, and longer life.

 

It should be noted that reduced thyroid levels in this case are not synonymous with hypothyroidism. Here, the body is choosing to lower thyroid hormones because the increased efficiency of energy use and hormonal signaling (including perhaps thyroid) is allowing this to happen.

Anything will dissolve faster in hot water than cold water. Extra heat will dissolve, disrupt and disorganize. This is not what I try to do to make someone healthy. It is commonly advised to “increase metabolism” and increase “thermogenesis” for health and weight loss.

Yet how many of you would put a brand of gasoline in your car that advertised that it would make your engine run hotter? What would that do to the life of your car? It is not an increase in metabolism that I am after; it is improved metabolic quality.

That will be determined at the quality of your leptin signaling.

If it is poor, if you are insulin and leptin resistant, your metabolism is unhealthy and high in what I call “metabolic friction”. If you then increase its rate you will likely accelerate your demise. To increase the quality of your metabolism you must be able to properly listen to insulin and especially to leptin.

If your fasting blood serum level of leptin is elevated you are likely leptin resistant and you will not be healthy unless you correct it.

How Do You Become Leptin Resistant?

This is the subject of much research. I believe people become leptin-resistant by the same general mechanism that people become insulin-resistant; by overexposure to high levels of the hormone.

High blood glucose levels cause repeated surges in insulin, and this causes one’s cells to become “insulin-resistant which leads to further high levels of insulin and diabetes. It is much the same as being in a smelly room for a period of time. Soon, you stop being able to smell it, because the signal no longer gets through.

I believe the same happens with leptin. It has been shown that as sugar gets metabolized in fat cells, fat releases surges in leptin, and I believe that those surges result in leptin-resistance just as it results in insulin-resistance.

The only known way to reestablish proper leptin (and insulin) signaling is to prevent those surges, and the only known way to do that is via diet and supplements.

As such, these can have a more profound effect on your health than any other known modality of medical treatment.

When leptin signaling is restored, your brain can finally hear the message that perhaps should have been delivered decades ago; high leptin levels can now scream to your brain that you have too much fat and that you better start burning some off for your life is in danger.

Your brain will finally allow you access into your pantry that you have been storing your fat in. Your cells will be fed the food from that fat and they will be satisfied. They will not know whether that food came from your belly fat or from your mouth; nor will they care. They will be receiving energy that they need and will not have to ask for more. You will not be hungry.

This also makes counting calories irrelevant, for the calories that you put into your mouth today are not necessarily what your cells will be eating; that will be determined primarily by leptin. Whether or not you put food into your mouth, your cells will be eating, and if they cannot eat fat they must eat sugar.

Since little sugar is stored, that sugar will be had by making you crave it, or by turning the protein in your muscle and bone into sugar. This contributes in a major way to weakness and osteoporosis. Whether or not this lean tissue wasting happens is determined by your capacity, or incapacity, to burn fat, and that is determined by your ability to listen to leptin.

A strategic diet that emphasizes good fats and avoids blood sugar spikes coupled with targeted supplements (as recommended in my Rosedale Diet and Dr. Mercola’s Take Control of Your Health), will enhance insulin and leptin sensitivity so that you can once again hear their music, allowing your life to be the symphony it was meant to be.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/06/20/this-hormone-makes-counting-calories-irrelevant.aspx

Mouse Studies Confirm the Key to Longevity

Mice lacking the insulin receptor substrate are more resistant to aging than normal mice, according to University College London researchers.

The finding further confirms the link between insulin signaling pathways and aging, and may have implications on aging in humans.

In the study, mice were engineered to lack either insulin receptor substrate IRS-1 or IRS-2, both proteins that are activated by the hormone insulin, which regulates glucose and fat metabolism. Compared with normal mice, the mice lacking IRS-1 had:

 

  • A 20 percent increase in their average lifespan (30 percent for female mice)
  • Better health as they aged

In contrast, mice lacking IRS-2 had shorter lives than normal mice, and developed signs of obesity and type 2 diabetes.

 

Sources:

 


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2007/11/13/mouse-studies-confirm-the-key-to-longevity.aspx

Parabens: The Hidden Danger in Lotions and Sunscreens

Many consumers have long known their favorite lotions and sunscreens contained parabens, or synthetic chemicals used as preservatives. But with more and more products being touted as “paraben-free,” many are now wondering, “What, exactly, are parabens, and are they dangerous?”

Parabens, which inhibit the growth of bacteria, yeast, and molds, have been used in personal-care products like shampoos, conditioners, deodorants, and sunscreens for years, allowing these products to survive for months, or years, during shipping and on store shelves.

Studies have now shown that parabens mimic the activity of the hormone estrogen, which is associated with certain forms of breast cancer.

Organic Consumers Association September 4, 2007

 


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2007/09/25/the-hidden-danger-in-lotions-and-sunscreens.aspx

How the Plague of Corruption Is Killing Mankind

In this interview, Judy Mikovits, Ph.D., Frank Ruscetti, Ph.D., and Kent Heckenlively, a lawyer and science teacher, discuss “Ending Plague: A Scholar’s Obligation in an Age of Corruption,” which they co-wrote.

This is the third book in a trilogy that began with “Plague: One Scientist’s Intrepid Search for the Truth About Human Retroviruses and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS), Autism, and Other Diseases” and “Plague of Corruption: Restoring Faith in the Promise of Science.”

The first two were co-written by Mikovits and Heckenlively. The inspiration for the third book came from Ruscetti, who has been Mikovits’ mentor and professional collaborator for 38 years. As indicated in the subtitle, we won’t be able to end these plagues of scientific and academic corruption unless or until scholars and scientists honor their professional obligations and responsibilities.

“That’s the point of the book, and we wouldn’t have this mess if people like Tony [Anthony] Fauci and Bob [Robert] Gallo didn’t get away with this thin playbook for things like Ebola, Zika and the autism epidemic, all the way back to HIV/AIDS,” Mikovits says.

Selling Out Public Health for Profit

“Plague” and “Plague of Corruption” detail the scientific discoveries made by Mikovits and Ruscetti, which include the scandalous findings that the blood supply and vaccines are tainted with disease-causing retroviruses, and the U.S. government has been hiding it for decades. The books read like fast-paced thrillers and offer a view into the halls of scientific inquiry, to which few people ever are privy.

Book No. 3, “Ending Plague,” is primarily Ruscetti’s story. By 1983, when Ruscetti hired Mikovits as a lab tech at Fort Detrick, he’d recently discovered T cell growth factor, later renamed interleukin 2. He’d also discovered the first disease-causing human retrovirus, called human T-lymphotropic virus (HTLV-11) or human T cell leukemia virus, back in 1980. The book starts with Ruscetti’s story and perspective.

“The motivation for writing the book is not something new,” Ruscetti says, “and unless we change the fortunes of every man, it’s just going to get worse. [During] the AIDS epidemic, we were at an impasse. What most people don’t realize is that it shouldn’t have been at an impasse then, because if you look at the rest of the world, the No. 1 cause of death among women of child bearing age is HIV.2

That’s a rather extraordinary statement. The leading cause of death among child-bearing women in the world is HIV/AIDS, but do you ever hear anything about that?3 If not, why do you think that is? In short, health agencies have done a terrible job over the last several decades, selling out public health for profit. As noted by Heckenlively:

“Public health has not been serving us well for the past 40 or 50 years. What I think is really extraordinary about Frank’s story is he really details how science has gone wrong. We like to think of science as this democracy of experts: top people in their field discussing how the science should move forward. But public health is not like that.

Starting in the 1970s with Nixon’s war on cancer, which accelerated under Reagan, these ‘czars’ of science were created. Tony Fauci is one of them. And then they demoted the other scientists to be like serfs. We don’t really have that many ‘government scientists.’ We have a lot of scientists under contract with the federal government, and this has really set up a system where people like Tony Fauci essentially control public health.

I think if people understood that the system itself is set up so that relatively few people are in charge, then all of this makes more sense. So, when they talk about in the media ‘science is deciding this,’ ‘science is deciding that,’ it’s really not.

It’s just a relatively small handful of people, almost like a holy bureau of science, and that’s what we’re attacking. What we’re trying to do is, we’re trying to move science back to its original roots in which everybody who is qualified has a voice and can contribute to the discussion.”

Too Much Power in Too Few Hands

Fauci has been the head of the National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) since 1984. In the 37 years since, he’s been responsible for doling out research funding that amounts to nearly $1 trillion. Who has received those taxpayer dollars? Primarily those who are aligned with the drug industry. It’s become an incestuous relationship that revolves around the creation of profit, while the public receives virtually no benefit.

In fact, in many cases, public health has suffered tremendously, and people have no concept of what has happened, or how their ill health is the outgrowth of corrupted policies and conflicts of interest. Heckenlively says:

“The comparison I make is that Fauci has been head of National Institute for Allergy and infectious Diseases longer than J. Edgar Hoover was head of the FBI. [Editor’s note: Actually, Hoover was head of the FBI for 48 years, from 1924 to 19724] Whether you’re right, left or middle, nobody believes that anybody should hold that kind of power for that long.

In fact, having that kind of power in and of itself is a really bad idea. I think [Fauci] really is a terrible person because not only has he been in charge of this system, he helped design this system. We need to get rid of Fauci and keep the next Fauci from taking power.”

Importantly, Fauci and Big Pharma not only control the funding of research, they also control what gets published and what’s buried. Fauci is the reason you’ve not heard about HIV/AIDS being a leading cause of death among women of childbearing age, worldwide. This statistic is censored, just like facts about COVID-19 treatment and COVID shots are censored.

As explained by Mikovits, chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), which primarily affects women, is basically AIDS without the HIV. It’s an immune dysfunction, and it can be traced back to contaminated vaccines, biologics and blood supply that have been used for decades.

As detailed in “Plague,” Fauci was a key figure in covering up the true cause of AIDS, which was incorrectly blamed on homosexuals and drug addicts. By fraudulently changing the definition of the disease and denying the presence of exogenous viruses, so-called xenotropic murine leukemia virus-related viruses or XMRVs, they prevented women from getting correct care. Mikovits explains:

“The definition was ‘Only HIV can cause AIDS,’ and we’re looking at the same thing right now. There never was a SARS-CoV-2 monkey virus in hundreds of millions of people. They’re being transmitted through the [COVID] vaccine, and through recombinants it can happen in only two weeks.”

SARS-CoV-2 Is a Cloned Monkey Virus

New York-based physician Dr. Andy Kaufman claims the SARS-CoV-2 virus has never been identified. According to Mikovits, he is dead-wrong. SARS-CoV-2 is a cloned monkey virus, manufactured in the Vero monkey kidney cell line and isolated only from that cell line, not from humans with COVID, she says.

The original bat coronavirus was grown in a Vero monkey kidney cell line known to be contaminated with retroviruses and coronaviruses that easily recombine every time the vaccines are manufactured in 100-liter productions.

Mikovits conducted experiments on bat tissue Ebola cultures in the same line of cells in the mid ‘90s, trying to understand how these viruses cause disease. What she discovered was that it’s not the infection that kills. It’s the inflammatory side effects and the dysregulation of the innate immune response that end up being lethal, and the virus causes this in part by shutting down the interferon pathways. Heckenlively explains:

“What Judy is saying is that when you mix these viruses in different cultures, you will get genetic sequences from the culture cells. The thing that our books really talk about is how dangerous this common practice is — taking, for example, a human virus that you isolate, and then grow it in animal cultures.

What a lot of people don’t realize is that viruses are not like other living organisms. They’re very promiscuous in their swapping of genetic codes. In April or May of 2020, [people said] ‘This bat virus seems to have some HIV spike proteins and sequence.’ How is it that you got monkey sequences in a bat virus?

Our contention is that this common practice of growing viruses in different animal cultures, including human cultures, is creating these Frankenstein viruses which will have genetic sequences from the mediums in which they’re grown …

The belief in the ‘80s was that the HIV virus is hiding out in the T cells, which made absolutely no sense. It is true that as the disease progresses, the T cells would absolutely be taken out. That was an indicator of the infection, but what Judy and Frank were saying is that the HIV virus can’t be hiding out in the T cells, especially because you got the development of AIDS dementia, and the T cells, are not [found] in the brain.

Judy’s seminal work with Frank was finding the actual reservoir in which the HIV virus lived, which was the mono site macrophages. If I understand Andy Kaufman’s claims, I think he’s throwing out the baby with the bath water. Judy is showing how the virus cause damage and how the establishment is wrong, and how some of these alternative people are missing part of the argument as well.”

SARS-CoV-2 Was Spread by Injection

Mikovits makes a number of shocking assertions in this interview. Among them, that SARS-CoV-2 was spread through the regular use of vaccines that had been contaminated with the SARS-CoV-2 virus because of manufacturing practices.

The monkey kidney cell lines that were used to manufacture many vaccines were contaminated with bat coronavirus and shipped around the world. Those vaccines were then injected into humans, called transfection. Their cells then began replicating what we now understand as the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

“They absolutely isolated a SARS-CoV-2 virus,” Mikovits says. “But there is not definitive-anything showing [that it] satisfies either Koch’s postulates or Hill criteria, which we did with the XMRVs, meaning the virus, in my opinion, is still a monkey virus that was spread via injection.”

In other words, while there is a virus named SARS-CoV-2, no one has proven that this viral isolate actually ever transmitted between humans or causes COVID-19. Her assertion is that SARS-CoV-2 is a monkey virus that is an artifact of culturing a bat coronavirus in Vero monkey kidney cell cultures that, for years, have been contaminated with XMRVs.

To prove SARS-CoV-2 causes COVID-19, you have to extract the virus from a person who has COVID-19, and infect another person with that virus. If the exposed individual gets COVID-19, then the virus would be the causative factor.

We know most individuals have been exposed to people with COVID-19, yet they do not develop COVID-19. This suggests that SARS-Co-V-2 is not the sole causative factor.

How the COVID Shots Produce Variants

Mikovits also believes the COVID jabs add to the pandemic by producing variants through a process called transfection. When a clone of an infectious viral sequence is injected in a synthetic viral particle called a lipid nanoparticle, it is not an infectious transmissible virus particle. Instead, the host cells’ machinery starts replicating the inoculated sequences or expressing the spike proteins.

In the case of the COVID jabs, your cells are producing the spike protein of the virus only, which is actually the pathogenic part of the virus. The spike protein is what’s causing the disease. Put another way, COVID-19 is not a viral infection. It’s caused by a metabolic toxin, namely the spike protein. This viral particle, in and of itself, functions like a synthetic virus.

The spike protein is synthetic because the mRNA injected has been genetically modified. The mRNA is not infectious or transmissible, but when injected, your body starts to make this synthetic spike protein that operates like a virus, and can be transmitted to other people. Heckenlively explains:

“Virologists say you need a complete virus to do harm. What Judy has [found] is that defective viruses can cause harm as well. If you think of a virus as a code, like a computer program, if you have a couple bad lines of code, that can still cause problems in your computer as well.

What Judy is saying is that viruses are dangerous in ways that are not fully appreciated by science. You don’t have to have a complete virus in order to do harm. You can do sequences of the virus that they would call defective or garbage pieces, and it can still cause enormous harm, because those parts of the virus, such as the envelope, are affecting the function of your immune system.”

According to Mikovits, 8% of the human genome consists of endogenous viruses that include retroviral envelopes that are critical to the regulation of our innate immune responses, our critical type 1 interferon. Some perform very important functions, including regulatory roles.

However, you cannot express animal or other human endogenous viruses without risking recombinants and new viruses. Hence, when vaccines are contaminated with animal retroviruses, you risk creating brand new viruses that can cause all sorts of harm.

What Is the Hidden Agenda?

In summary, Mikovits and Ruscetti’s work demonstrates an important principle, which is that viruses do not travel alone. They travel in groups, and while one may affect one part of the immune system, another type will produce other immune responses. The end result is what we diagnose as the acquired immune dysfunction or deficiency.

For example, HIV alone does not cause AIDS. To develop AIDS, you need multiple environmental toxins like glyphosate, aluminum or a coinfection of HIV and XMRVs. Again, XMRVs are found in vaccines that have been grown in animal tissue.

The XMRVs cripple your innate immune system, including your natural killer (NK) cells. This then allows the HIV to take out your adaptive immune system, the T and B cells, resulting in disease progression and if left untreated, death. In CFS, the primary coinfection is that of XMRVs and herpes viruses.

Mikovits is convinced that what is now being called “long-haul COVID” is the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein activating and recombining with XMRVs — introduced via vaccinations — and the HIV virus. She also believes those who are most susceptible to dying from the COVID shots are those who are already coinfected with XMRV, HIV, Borrelia, Babesia and other pathogens commonly acquired from contaminated vaccines.

What this all means, then, is that in order to protect yourself against the disease, you cannot focus on protecting yourself against a single virus. The answer is to make sure your immune system is strong enough to take on whatever it encounters. Absolutely never get another inoculation of any vaccines until all of the appropriate testing is done and the contaminants removed, as they should have been decades ago.

That’s why the pandemic measures have been so detrimental. Mask wearing, sheltering indoors and staying in a state of perpetual fear all dampen your immune function. The question is, why did those in charge make sure they did everything to lower our immune defenses?

“For me personally, it is the best evidence that this was not simply a series of mistakes by those in charge,”Heckenlively says. “There had to be some other agenda. I’m trained as an attorney. I have people lie to me all the time. I’m always questioning people and I look at what’s done. Can I prove it? No, but it seems like an amazing pattern of mistakes to just be the result of stupidity or politics.”

Profiling COVID-19

What do we know about the people who have died from COVID-19? We know they’re elderly. We know that they have 2.6 comorbidities. What Mikovits, Ruscetti and Heckenlively are saying is that for the past 60 years, we’ve been injecting animal viruses into human beings, and the assertion made in “Plague of Corruption” is that this practice has caused many of these chronic diseases in people.

This reality has been covered up, however, which is why many are now hearing about this for the very first time. Along comes SARS-CoV-2, triggering terrible immune system reactions in those who are already infected with these animal viruses.

The coinfections are ultimately what’s killing them. Essentially, SARS-CoV-2 is acting like the executioner of people who are already sick with chronic diseases caused by animal retroviruses, other pathogens and toxins introduced through vaccinations.

Add to this the COVID shots. These injections make your cells produce a synthetic spike protein (a synthetic virus envelope) that has pathological effects. The reason why the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein is so dangerous is because it contains the envelope proteins of three of the most harmful viruses: the HIV family, the XMRV family and the SARS family of viruses.

All of them are now rolled into one, and the instructions to produce this synthetic pathogen are now being injected into hundreds of millions of people. What can go wrong? As explained by Mikovits, the XMRVs and HIV were incorporated by growing the SARS-CoV-2 virus in the Vero E6 cell line.

Related to HIV is the simian immune deficiency virus (SIV), and it too is found in the Vero monkey cell line, part of the endogenous viral genome of monkeys. SIV and HIV have overlapping envelope proteins, so they produce the same inflammatory immune response.

Ending Plague

“Ending Plague” goes deep into the history of all this and provides a framework for understanding how something so devastating and disruptive could happen now, in 2021. The basis of this has a lot to do with the actions of Fauci and Robert Gallo, Ph.D. Fauci, for example, was responsible for discrediting all AIDS treatments other than AZT — the drug that he sponsored.

He kept insisting that more randomized controlled trials were needed, yet he held the purse strings and refused to fund the very studies he claimed were required to prove these other treatments. AZT meanwhile, cost $5 to make and was sold for $10,000 per dose. AZT wound up killing some 330,000 people due to its toxicity.

The very same pattern is playing out today with COVID-19, and Fauci is again playing a lead role. Is that really a coincidence? He’s been warning against the use of hydroxychloroquine and ivermectin, and he’s downplayed the importance of vitamin D sufficiency and any number of other things. According to Fauci, the COVID “vaccine” is the only way forward, and now we’re seeing thousands of people around the world dying within weeks of their injections.

In “Ending Plague,” the three coauthors review how we can reform public health to get us out of this mess, once and for all. “I think that the scholar’s obligation in an age of corruption is to tell the truth and make the world a better place,” Heckenlively says, adding:

“These books that I helped Judy, Frank and others put together, these are really stories of defectors from science. In them we see the destruction of the old order and the creation of something new and wonderful.

We’re not just saying things are terrible. We are talking about how to bring about change. That’s why it’s so important that people buy these books because, I hate to say it, sales are power for people like Judy, Frank and me, to continue our message.”


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2021/07/25/plague-of-corruption.aspx

80 Percent of Schools are Applying Pesticides

More than 80 percent of schools in America use toxic pesticides as a preventative measure, whether it‘s needed or not.

Mark Lame, an entomologist and professor at Indiana University‘s School of Public and Environmental Affairs, believes this is an entirely unnecessary practice that carries more risks than benefits to students and faculty.

The most widely used pesticides are, in fact, nerve poisons. They cause uncontrolled nerve firing, and disrupt the delicate hormone systems.

The link between pesticide exposure and health problems in children is already well established. Research has connected these endocrine-disrupting pesticides to health problems such as ADHD, autism, and infertility — all of which are on the rise.

Professor Lame says pest problems are better managed through an integrated approach — by preventing the conditions that attract pests into school facilities in the first place.

Lame serves as a consultant for schools around the country, helping them reduce the toxic load by implementing his Integrated Pest Management (IPM) process.

Science Daily July 21, 2007


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2007/08/16/80-percent-of-schools-are-applying-pesticides.aspx

Study Found Toxin from GM Crops is Showing up in Human Blood

Genetically Modified CropsA new study is causing fresh doubts about the safety of genetically modified crops. The research found Bt toxin, which is present in many GM crops, in human blood.

Bt toxin makes crops toxic to pests, but it has been claimed that the toxin poses no danger to the environment and human health; the argument was that the protein breaks down in the human gut. But the presence of the toxin in human blood shows that this does not happen.

India Today reports:

“Scientists … have detected the insecticidal protein …  circulating in the blood of pregnant as well as non-pregnant women. They have also detected the toxin in fetal blood, implying it could pass on to the next generation.”


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/05/31/study-found-toxin-from-gm-crops-is-showing-up-in-human-blood.aspx

Is Alzheimer’s a Form of Diabetes?

More evidence has been uncovered that Alzheimer’s disease may actually be a third form of diabetes, according to researchers from Northwestern University.

Insulin and insulin receptors in your brain are crucial for learning and memory, and it’s known that these components are lower in people with Alzheimer’s disease. In your brain, insulin binds to an insulin receptor at a synapse, which triggers a mechanism that allows nerve cells to survive and memories to form.

The Northwestern University researchers have found that a toxic protein in the brain of Alzheimer’s patients — called ADDL for “amyloid ß-derived diffusible ligand” — removes insulin receptors from nerve cells, and renders those neurons insulin resistant.

The findings suggest that ADDLs accumulate at the beginning of Alzheimer’s disease and thereby block memory function.

The process is currently thought to be reversible.

The researchers speculated that drugs used to treat type 2 diabetes, which also causes insulin resistance, may “supercede currently available Alzheimer’s drugs.”

The FASEB Journal August 24, 2007

Physorg.com September 26, 2007


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2007/10/16/is-alzheimer-s-a-form-of-diabetes.aspx

Patents Prove SARS-CoV-2 Is a Manufactured Virus

In a January 2021 lecture, Jonathan Latham, Ph.D., introduced the term “the pandemic virus industrial complex,” to describe the academic, military and commercial complexes that are driving the pandemic agenda and obscuring facts that indicate SARS-CoV-2 is a manmade virus.

In the video above, David E. Martin, Ph.D., introduces shocking evidence that SARS-CoV-2 is indeed a manmade bioweapon, and has been in the works for decades. Much of this research was funded by none other than the National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) under the direction of Dr. Anthony Fauci.

Pandemic virus industrial complex indeed! You do not want to miss this bombshell interview, conducted by Reiner Fuellmich,1 founding member of the German Corona Extra-Parliamentary Inquiry Committee2,3(Außerparlamentarischer Corona Untersuchungsausschuss or ACU4). A transcript5 is available if you prefer to read it.

SARS-CoV-2 Is Not a Novel Coronavirus at All

Martin has been in the business of tracking patent applications and approvals since 1998. His company, M-Cam International Innovation Risk Management, is the world’s largest underwriter of intangible assets used in finance in 168 countries. M-Cam has also monitored biological and chemical weapons treaty violations on behalf of the U.S. government, following the anthrax scare in September 2001.

According to Martin, there are more than 4,000 patents relating to the SARS coronavirus. His company has also done a comprehensive review of the financing of research involving the manipulation of coronaviruses that gave rise to SARS as a subclade of the beta coronavirus family.

In his testimony to ACU, he reviews some of the most pertinent patents, showing SARS-CoV-2 is not a novel coronavirus at all but, rather, a manmade virus that has been in the works for decades.

A comprehensive list of 120 patents relating to SARS-CoV-2-associated features can be found here.6 The features patented are referenced in two key scientific papers, “A Novel Bat Coronavirus Reveals Natural Insertions at the S1/S2 2 Cleavage Site of the Spike Protein and a Possible Recombinant 3 Origin of HCoV-19,” and “The Proximal Origin of SARS-CoV-2.”

On that list, we see numerous patents detailing manipulation of the polybasic cleavage site for SARS-CoV, the spike protein, as well as ACE2 binding, all three of which are supposed to be unique features of SARS-CoV-2. As explained by Martin:

“We took the reported gene sequence, which was reportedly isolated as a novel virus, indicated as such by the ICTV, the International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses of the World Health Organization. We took the actual genetic sequences that were reportedly novel and reviewed those against the patent records that were available as of the spring of 2020.

And what we found, as you’ll see in this report, are over 120 patented pieces of evidence, to suggest that the declaration of a ‘novel coronavirus’ was actually entirely a fallacy.

There was no novel coronavirus. There are countless, very subtle modifications of coronavirus sequences that have been uploaded, but there was no single identified ‘novel coronavirus’ at all.

As a matter of fact, we found records in the patent records, of sequences attributed to novelty, going to patents that were sought as early as 1999. So not only was this not a novel anything … it’s not been novel for over two decades.”

Spike Protein Vaccine for Coronavirus Patented 22 Years Ago

Up until 1999, coronavirus patents were all in the veterinary sciences. The first coronavirus vaccine to use the S spike protein was patented by Pfizer in January 2000 (Patent No. 6372224). It was a spike protein virus vaccine for canine coronavirus. You can look up the actual patents for yourself on the United States Patent and Trademark Office’s website,7 if you like.

“Ralph Baric’s work on … rabbit cardiomyopathy … and then canine coronavirus in Pfizer’s work, to identify how to develop S spike protein vaccine target candidates, [give] rise to the obvious evidence that …

… neither the coronavirus concept of a vaccine, nor the principle of the coronavirus itself, as a pathogen of interest with respect to the spike proteins behavior, is anything novel at all. As a matter of fact, it’s 22 years old based on patent filings,” Martin says.

From HIV Vaccine Development to COVID-19

According to Martin, Fauci and the NIAID “found the malleability of coronavirus to be a potential candidate for HIV vaccines,” and in 1999, Fauci funded research at University of North Carolina Chapel Hill (where Baric has a lab) to create “an infectious replication-defective coronavirus” specifically targeted for human lung epithelium.

The patent for that replication-defective coronavirus that attacks human lung cells was filed April 19, 2002 (Patent No. 7279327). “In other words, we made SARS,” Martin says. Or perhaps more accurately, Fauci and UNC did. Several months after that patent filing, the SARS outbreak in Asia occurred.

“That patent, issued as U.S. Patent 7279327 … clearly lays out in very specific gene sequencing, the fact that we knew that the ACE receptor, the ACE2 binding domain, the S-1 spike protein, and other elements of what we have come to know as this scourge pathogen, was not only engineered, but could be synthetically modified in the laboratory using nothing more than gene sequencing technologies.

Taking computer code and turning it into a pathogen, or an intermediate of the pathogen, and that technology was funded exclusively, in the early days, as a means by which we could harness coronavirus as a vector to distribute HIV vaccine.”

Coronavirus — A Biological Weapon Candidate Since 2001?

As mentioned, Martin has monitored biological and chemical treaty violations since 2001, following the anthrax attacks. Throughout the fall of 2001, an “enormous number” of bacterial and viral pathogens were patented through the National Institutes of Health, the NIAID, the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID) and their international collaborators.

“Our concern was that coronavirus was being seen as not only a potential manipulatable agent for potential use as a vaccine vector, but it was also very clearly being considered as a biological weapon candidate,” Martin says.

Before the SARS outbreak in China, Martin reported these concerns publicly. “So, you can imagine how disappointed I am to be sitting here … having 20 years earlier pointed that there was a problem looming on the horizon with respect to coronavirus,” he says.

CDC Holds Patents on SARS Coronavirus

In April 2003, after the SARS outbreak in China had occurred, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention tried to file a patent for the entire gene sequence for the SARS coronavirus (Patent No. 7220852). This is a violation of 35 U.S. Code Section 101, which states you cannot patent a naturally-occurring substance.

That CDC patent also had several derivative patents associated with it, including U.S. patent 46592703P and U.S. patent 7776521. These two patents cover the gene sequence of SARS coronavirus and the means for detecting it using RT PCR testing.

Together, these patents are highly problematic, because if you own both, then “you have a cunning advantage to being able to control 100% of the provenance of not only the virus itself, but also its detection, meaning you have entire scientific and message control,” Martin explains.

The CDC tried to justify the patent by saying they were being sought in order to ensure that everyone would be free to research coronaviruses. However, that is a lie, Martin says. The U.S. patent office rejected the patent on the gene sequence as unpatentable because it was 99.9% identical to a coronavirus that was already in the public domain.

The CDC paid an appeal fine in 2006 and again in 2007. They also paid an additional fee to keep the application private. In the end, the CDC overrode the patent examiner’s rejection and secured the patent in 2007.

“Last time I checked, if you’re trying to make information available for the public research, you would not pay a fee to keep the information private,” Martin says. According to Martin, the gene sequence filed by the CDC in 2003, 2005 and 2006 is 89% to 99% identical to the sequence identified as SARS-CoV-2.

Sequoia Pharmaceuticals

April 28, 2003 — three days after the CDC filed its patent for the SARS coronavirus — Sequoia Pharmaceuticals filed a patent on an antiviral agent for the treatment and control of infectious coronavirus (Patent No. 7151163). So, the CDC files a patent on SARS coronavirus, and three days later there’s a treatment?

This strongly suggests there was a working relationship behind the scenes. Sequoia Pharmaceuticals, founded in 2002, develops antiviral therapeutics with a special focus on drug-resistant viruses.8 Its lead investors include the Wellcome Trust.

But there’s yet another problem with Sequoia’s 2003 filing for an antiviral agent. It was actually issued and published before the CDC patent on SARS coronavirus had been granted, which didn’t happen until 2007, and the CDC had paid to keep the application private.

“So, the degree to which the information could have been known by any means other than insider information between those parties is zero,” Martin says. “It is not physically possible for you to patent a thing that treats a thing that had not been published, because CDC had paid to keep it secret.

This, my friends, is the definition of criminal conspiracy, racketeering and collusion. This is not a theory, this is evidence. You cannot have information in the future, and form a treatment for a thing that did not exist. It is a RICO case …

And the RICO pattern, which was established in April of 2003 for the first coronavirus, was played out to exactly the same schedule when we see SARS COV-2 show up, when we have Moderna getting the spike protein sequence by phone from the vaccine research center at NIAID, prior to the definition of the novel subclade. How do you treat a thing, before you actually have the thing?”

Sanofi Holds Patents to Novel Feature of SARS-CoV-2

The next bombshell revelation occurred on June 5, 2008, when Ablynx, now a part of Sanofi, filed a series of patents detailing what we’ve been told are novel features of SARS-CoV-2, namely the polybasic cleavage site, the spike protein and the ACE2 receptor binding domain. The first of those patents, U.S. Patent No. 9193780, was issued November 24, 2015.

Between 2016 and 2019, a series of patents were issued to Ablynx and Sanofi covering the RNA strands and the subcomponents of the gene strands.

Between 2008 and 2017, a series of patents were also filed by a long list of players, including Crucell, Rubeus Therapeutics, Children’s Medical Corporation, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität in München, Protein Science Corporation, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, University of Iowa, University of Hong Kong and the Chinese National Human Genome Center in Shanghai.

This series of patents detail ever single attribute that is supposed to be unique to SARS-CoV-2, according to the paper, “A Novel Bat Coronavirus Reveals Natural Insertions at the S1/S2 2 Cleavage Site of the Spike Protein and a Possible Recombinant 3 Origin of HCoV-19.”

This paper has routinely been used to identify the so-called novel coronavirus that is SARS-CoV-2. Yet there are 73 patents, issued between 2008 and 2019, that describe the very elements that are said to be unique to SARS-CoV-2. Patents have been filed for SARS-CoV-2’s polybasic cleavage site, the ACE2 receptor binding domain, and the spike protein.

“So, there was no ‘outbreak’ of SARS, because we had engineered all of the elements of that,” Martin says. And by 2016, when Baric published a paper warning that SARS coronavirus was “poised for human emergence,” the virus in question had already been patented for commercial exploitation 73 times!

The Pandemic Virus Industrial Complex Is Swimming in Profit

Baric is one of the few people who has profited significantly from this pandemic, which he appears to have been part of creating. Another is Fauci. The same drug companies that hold patents on not-so-novel SARS-CoV-2 features are also raking in profits from their COVID shots.

In 2015, Dr. Peter Daszak, head of the EcoHealth Alliance that funneled research dollars from the NIAID to the Wuhan Institute of Virology for coronavirus research, who has promoted the official narrative that SARS-CoV-2 has a natural origin, stated:9

“We need to increase public understanding of the need for medical countermeasures such as a pan-coronavirus vaccine. A key driver is the media and the economics will follow the hype. We need to use that hype to our advantage, to get to the real issues. Investors will respond if they see profit at the end of the process.”

Sounds an awful lot like what we’re facing right now, doesn’t it? At the end of the day, this pandemic has primarily been about profit and the shifting of wealth, from the lower- and middle-classes to the already ultra-wealthy. This is a war on the public, waged using biological weapons and information warfare, with the ultimate goal of “resetting” life and commerce as we know it.

Intentional Weaponization of Spike Protein

Martin says:

“There wasn’t a lab leak. This was an intentional bio-weaponization of spike proteins to inject into people, to get them addicted to a pan-coronavirus vaccine. This has nothing to do with a pathogen that was released, and every study that’s ever been launched to try to verify a lab leak, is a red herring.

[There are] 73 patents on everything clinically novel — 73, all issued before 2019. And I’m going to give you the biggest bombshell of all to prove that this was actually not a release of anything, because Patent No. 7279327, the patent on the recombinant nature of that ‘lung-targeting’ coronavirus, was transferred mysteriously from the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill to the National Institutes of Health in 2018.

Now, here’s the problem with that. Under the Bayh-Dole Act, the U.S. government already has what’s called a march-in right provision. That means if the U.S. government has paid for research, they are entitled to benefit from that research at their demand or at their whim.

So, explain why, in 2017 and 2018, suddenly the National Institutes of Health have to take ownership of the patent that they already had rights to, held by the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. And how did they need to file a Certificate of Correction to make sure that it was legally enforceable, because there was a typographical error in the grant reference in the first filing?

They needed to make sure that not only did they get it right, but they needed to make sure every typographical error that was contained in the patent was correct on THE SINGLE PATENT REQUIRED, to develop the Vaccine Research Institute’s mandate, which was shared between the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill and Moderna in November of 2019, when UNC Chapel Hill, NIAID and Moderna began the sequencing of a spike protein vaccine — a month before an outbreak ever happened.”

‘New Normal’ Coined by Merck at 2004 Bioterrorism Conference

The more we learn, the grimmer it gets. Clearly, plans for our current-day predicament were laid well over a decade ago. According to Martin, the slogan “The New Normal” was coined by Merck during a January 6, 2004, conference called “SARS and Bioterrorism, Emerging Infectious Diseases, Antimicrobial Therapeutics, and Immune Modulators.”

This term has now become a branded campaign adopted by the World Health Organization, the Global Preparedness Monitoring Board and the rest of the pandemic virus industrial complex.

Incidentally, Fauci is on the board of directors of the Global Preparedness Monitoring Board, as is Dr. Chris Elias, president of the Global Development Program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and George Fu Gao, Ph.D., director-general of the Chinese CDC and a Chinese communist party member.10

It’s a long interview, but it does not disappoint. I urge you to take the time to listen to it, as Martin really lays out the timeline of when and how this pandemic virus came to be. He’s also published a 205-page paper11 detailing Fauci’s involvement that you can download from archive.org.

It now seems clearer than ever that everything we’re experiencing was planned and executed with a profit motive in mind. Armed with this new knowledge, I urge you once again to reclaim your life, your freedom and independence, and resist this manufactured notion of a “new normal.” A new normal will surely be established if we persist, but it will be the converse of what the pandemic virus industrial complex is hoping for.

We will resurrect medicine and science from the induced coma these fields are currently in, and usher in a new era of medical freedom, personal liberty, responsible and transparent government, fiscal stability and health care that actually promotes health rather than slow death. It may take a while, but together, we can do it. To get there, keep sharing information such as that provided by Martin in this mind-blowing interview in any way you can. In the end, truth will prevail. Believe it.


Source: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2021/07/24/patents-prove-sars-cov-2-is-a-manufactured-virus.aspx

Vitamin B12 Deficiency Symptoms

A significant portion of Americans have some type of vitamin deficiency, one of which is vitamin B12.1 Vitamin B12 (cobalamin) is a water-soluble vitamin, which is vital for optimal health. Unfortunately, many of the symptoms of deficiency mimic other health conditions and so it is often considered last in a variety of health issues.

There are four known forms of the vitamin2 including methylcobalamin and 5-deoxyadenosylcobalamin, which are metabolically active. Two other forms, hydroxocobalamin and cyanocobalamin, become biologically active after they are converted.

Vitamin B12 is an essential vitamin, which means your body cannot make it. Instead, you must consume an average of 2.4 micrograms each day from food or supplements.3 While it’s found in a wide variety of animal foods,4 some experts estimate that 3.2% of people over age 50 are deficient in vitamin B12, and another possible 20% have a borderline deficiency5 and others estimate that up to 43% of older adults may be deficient.6

Although it affects a significant number of people, particularly the elderly and those in developing countries, it is one of the most overlooked conditions.7Vitamin B12 plays a vital role in many functions throughout your body. For example, it is important to create blood cells and keep nerve cells healthy.

Vitamin B12 also helps prevent megaloblastic anemia.8 The vitamin is necessary for cardiovascular and cognitive health, and it helps to produce hemoglobin, improve nerve strength and regulate homocysteine levels.9,10,11

Homocysteine is an amino acid produced by the body, which in large amounts can increase the risk of heart attack and stroke. One function of vitamin B12 is to help break down homocysteine in your blood.12 What symptoms might be a warning that you or a loved one may have a vitamin B12 deficiency?

Symptoms of Vitamin B12 Deficiency Are Not Diagnostic

The most common cause of megaloblastic anemia is a deficiency in vitamin B12.13 In this condition the bone marrow produces large and immature red blood cells, which leads to fatigue, lightheadedness and skin pallor. Other symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency include:14,15,16,17

Shortness of breath Dizziness Difficulty breathing
Loss of appetite Tingling or numbness in the hands or feet Balance or gait problems
Loss of vision Mental confusion Memory loss
Depression Insomnia Panic attacks
Weight loss Infertility Dementia
Mouth or tongue soreness Swollen or inflamed tongue Difficulty reasoning
Joint pain Paranoia and delusions Incontinence
Constipation Headache Heart palpitations (Feeling like your heart is pounding or racing)

Infants who are deficient present with failure to thrive, megaloblastic anemia and delayed development.18 Permanent damage to the nervous system can occur, so identifying deficiency in people who don’t first present with megaloblastic anemia is crucial, so it is treated as soon as possible.

Although an experienced health care provider may recognize symptoms and theorize that you have a deficiency, testing is required to confirm the condition. Certain groups of people are at greater risk of developing a vitamin B12 deficiency than others. These groups of people have difficulty absorbing vitamin B12 from the food they eat, or they don’t get enough in their diet.19

To absorb the vitamin your body goes through a two-step process. First, hydrochloric acid in your stomach separates the vitamin from protein in the food source. Next, vitamin B12 attaches with a protein your stomach makes — called intrinsic factor — so it can be absorbed into the body.

In certain conditions, even people taking supplements cannot absorb the vitamin since they don’t make enough intrinsic factor to bind with the vitamin so it can be absorbed. You may have a higher risk of developing a vitamin B12 deficiency if you are/have:20,21

An older adult — Age increases the potential you don’t make enough hydrochloric acid.
A regular coffee drinker — One study22 found those who drank four or more cups of coffee daily had lower plasma concentrations of circulating vitamin B concentrations.
A regular alcohol drinker — The effect of regular alcohol consumption was measured in healthy, well-nourished, postmenopausal women,23 which demonstrated lower levels of vitamin B12, potentially since vitamin B12 is stored in the liver.