The Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides will help you to determine the which fruits and vegetables have the most pesticides residues and are the most important to buy organic. By avoiding the most contaminated fruits and vegetables and eating the least contaminated you can lower your pesticide intake substantially.
The Dirty Dozen (Buy these organic where possible):
3. Sweet bell peppers
6. Nectarines – imported
11. Blueberries – domestic
Plus: Green beans, Kale/Greens – May contain residues of special concern
The Clean 15 (Lowest is pesticides, ok to buy not organic when):
2. Sweet Corn
6. Sweet Peas
11. Cantaloupe – domestic
12. Sweet Potatoes
Sunday, March 10, 2013 by: Hesh Goldstein
(NaturalNews) For years I have gone into food stores and read labels only to not know what half the ingredients were. I got to thinking, that maybe I'm not alone when it comes to knowing what the rest of them are. So, I've put together what might be a one-stop shopping guide to understanding what's in your food.
This is also known as acesulfame K or ace K. Commercially, it is marketed as Sweet One and Sunett. It is nothing more that a calorie-free, chemical, artificial sweetener that is used in over 5,000 products worldwide. You will find it in chewing gum, diet drinks, and light fruit drinks and used as a sugar replacement in desserts and baked goods because of its heat stability. It is 200 times sweeter than sugar and despite no testing done to determine its safety for human consumption, the Fraud and Drug Administration has not required testing despite knowing that this crap can cause cancer in animals. Oh yeah, it is not metabolized or stored in the body.
The basic use of food acids are to enhance flavors and act as preservatives, to increase shelf life, and antioxidants to somehow provide some sort of artificial protection. The common food acids include vinegar, citric acid from citrus fruits, tartaric acid from grapes, and malic acid from apples. These are the safe ones. But
ADIPIC ACID, used in the production of nylon, is what the food industry uses in gelatin containing products, bottled drinks, and powdered fruit concentrates. It also has a low pH making food decay to take a bit longer.
CITRIC ACID, which we find in citrus fruits, is not what we find in food manufacturing. Basically this comes from corn (hello GMO), and it brings out the flavors of the other ingredients and provides a "tanginess" to otherwise boring foods. Did I forget to say that it greatly extends shelf life? Indeed it does!
MALIC ACID, is a good one as it comes from apples and used by the food industry to provide a tart or sour flavor to foods. Malic acid in combination with magnesium can help in alleviating fibromyalgia.
This is a natural yellow/red plant extract used to dye foods, textiles, and body care products. Primarily it is used as a red food coloring in cereals, preserved meats (otherwise they would be in their natural moldy grey color), cheeses, and sweets. Annatto has an incredible distinction - it is the only natural color known to cause as many adverse effects as artificial colors and is used because Annatto sounds better that Artificial. Adverse effects? How about reactions to skin, gastrointestinal, respiratory, and central nervous systems?
ANTIOXIDANTS (food grade):
These slow the oxidation of fats, oils, colorings, and flavorings. They are better known as:
BHT and BHA, which are only used to prevent oxidation, slow rancidity and yes, extend shelf life. You can find BHT and BHA in cereals, instant potatoes, frozen dinners, baked goods, chewing gum, beer, and some fruit drinks. The bad news: they affect the central nervous system, cause behavioral problems in kids, and BHT can convert hormones and contraceptives into carcinogens.
ARTIFICIAL BUTTER FLAVOR:
Do not touch it with a ten-foot pole! This creation contains more than one hundred chemicals. You can find this in popcorn, as have the factory workers for microwave popcorn that experienced an inflammatory lung disease, or "Popcorn Worker's Lung Disease", from the exposure to the diacetyl contained therein. Diacetyl is also hidden in ice cream, candy and baked goods as "artificial flavor". Included also is a chemical named acetoin, which is an aroma carrier used in flavor preparations. It is also another culprit in the Popcorn disease.
These are basically from petroleum products and the Fraud and Drug Administration has "approved" the following bearing the letters FD&C (Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic):
FD&C Blue # 1 - Brilliant Blue FCF -A blue shade found in beverages, candy and baked goods. Hello cancer!
FD&C Blue # 2 - Indigotine - A dark blue shade found in pet food, beverages and candy. Yes, same as above!
FD&C Green # 3 - Fast Green FCF, E143 - A bluish green that is rarely used. Same!
FD&C Red # 3 - Erythrosine - High doses caused cancer in lab animals.
FD&C Red # 40 - Allura Red, E129 - Produces allergy-like reactions, cancer, and hyper-activity in kids.
FD&C Yellow # 5 - Tartrazine - A yellow shade found in soft drinks, energy drinks, cotton candy, flavored chips, cereals, cake mixes, pastries, sports drinks, and other convenience foods. Skin rash, skin allergies, asthma, runny nose, and hyperactivity in kids.
FD&C Yellow # 6 - Sunset yellow, E 110 - An orange shade found in DayQuill capsules, Extra strength Tylenol, fortune cookies, red sauces, chips, and yellow, orange, and red food products. It is linked to allergies, nausea, nasal congestion, and hyperactivity in kids.
This is a cheap way for a food pimp to make a flavorless, bland food taste yummy. Guess what? The Fraud and Drug Administration does not require labeling as long as the product has the "Generally Recognized As Safe" label for the ingredients. Bear in mind that lots can be hidden under the word "flavor". Just to let you know, the flavor "Vanillin", which is the synthetic version of Vanilla, is made from petroleum and benzene, a known carcinogen.
An artificial sweetener composed of 50 percent phenylalanine, 40 percent aspartic acid, and 10 percent methanol and converts to formaldehyde at 84 degrees (the body's temperature is 98.6). If you wish to become brain dead or experience headaches, dizziness, behavioral changes, convulsions, diarrhea, memory loss, itching, hives, and weight gain (yes, you read that right), knock yourself out.
Antimicrobial preservatives used in food and drink to maintain flavor and extend shelf life. Linked to allergic reactions and cancer.
BROWN RICE SYRUP:
It's a salt and used as an anti-caking agent, binder, emulsifier, filler, and foaming agent. It's used in supplements and store bought MSM pills or powders, making it worthless. No food testing has been done.
Basically, this is chalk and is used as a coagulant.
A red color that comes from crushed up red beetles. In other words, bug juice.
A vegetable wax that comes from a tree in Brazil used to coat candy, frosting, gum, and as a coating for floors and cars.
AKA caseinate, calcium caseinate, ammonia caseinate, magnesium caseinate, potassium caseinate, and sodium caseinate. It is the principal protein in milk.
Crapola! This "stuff" uses hydroxide to neutralize the acids in the cocoa, giving it a smoother and less bitter taste but causing the cocoa to lose up tom 90 percent of its antioxidants.
In food manufacturing, this is refined, bleached, deodorized, and useless. Do not confuse it with organic virgin cold-pressed coconut oil, which is highly beneficial to health.
AKA shellac. It's the waste product of the Lac beetle in India, Myanmar, and Thailand used as a clear coating to protect candy quality. If you like eating beetle doo-doo, go for it.
AKA high-fructose-corn-syrup. It is a GMO, has no nutritional value, and allows you to gain weight easily.
Comes for sugar and GMO corn. Having the same formula as glucose, the word dextrose is used because the pimps believe that people will choose dextrose over glucose. It is nothing more than refined sugar that you do not need.
EDTA (ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid)
A chelating agent that is toxic to cells, potentially carcinogenic, an organic pollutant, collects in ground water and can carry heavy metals back into the drinking water. It is added to canned foods to trap metal impurities. Yum!
These enable foods with fat and water to stay mixed together to give a more "appealing" look and consistent texture. The most commonly used is lecithin.
We all know the importance of fiber for a healthy bowel function. There are, however, fibers that are so heavily processed that you need to avoid them like the plague.
ALGINATE has chelating properties, comes from algae and seaweed, and moves toxins out of the body. It is used in processed foods to present a "creamy" texture. Also in cereal bars, ice cream, salad dressings, cheese spreads, and frozen dinners. Propylene glycol alginate, chemically modified, thickens soda and salad dressings and stabilizes the foam in beer.
CELLULOSE comes from the indigestible part of plants and is used to thicken, prevent caking, emulsify, and gel foods.
METHYLCELLULOSE is chemically produced with the same stuff used to make Drano. If you see this on a label, run away.
Comes from animal's hooves and connective tissue of animals and fish. Gumdrops are pure gelatin. Ugh!
Mostly from natural sources like seeds, tree sap, and seaweed. Some good; some bad.
CARRAGEENAN is carcinogenic when used as food grade (in foods).
LOCUST BEAN GUM comes from carob beans. A good one.
GUM ARABIC/ GUM ACACIA is good in foods and good in paints, glues, and textiles.
GUAR GUM is another one that okay.
XANTHAN GUM basically comes from corn and is likely a GMO.
Comes from chicory root and acts as a probiotic in the gut. While it binds, it removes cholesterol, fat and dangerous hormones.
Comes from milk. Caucasians, except for Scandinavians, are 75, percent lactose intolerant, Asians are 85 percent lactose intolerant, and blacks are 95 percent lactose intolerant. If you experience cramping, bloating, gas, diarrhea or a runny nose and congestion after consuming milk products, you are lactose intolerant or allergic to all the antibiotics and growth hormones contained within the usual cooked to death and. devoid of all nutrients, dairy products.
For the most part it comes from corn and is likely a GMO. In Europe, where Monsanto has been kicked out of, it comes mostly from barley and wheat
Anything modified, hydrolyzed, textured, autolyzed, protein isolates, yeast extract, and torula yeast are the most commonly used. Go to your search engine and put in MSG euphemisms and you will get a list that will blow your mind.
NITRATES and NITRITES:
Found in cured, processed, and fast food meats. They cause cancer.
An additive to make low-fat or fat free foods. Causes diarrhea, abdominal cramps, gas and interferes with the absorption of health-protective, fat-soluble vitamins and antioxidants.
Choose palm fruit oil over palm oil. Palm oil is loaded with saturated fat. If it says "modified" palm oil, take a hike. It is the highest in saturated fat and not any better than the partially hydrogenated trans fats they are used to replace, which in of itself promotes heart disease by increasing the amount of "bad" LDL cholesterol and decreasing the amount of "good" HDL cholesterol. It is by far the worst of the worst.
A good guy coming from fruits, vegetables and legumes to thicken products.
Considering it comes from combining corn sugar, a GMO, with sorbitol, the GMO part is enough to turn me off. It is usually added to products containing unhealthy products and can result in diarrhea.
PGPR (polyglycerol polyricinolate):
An emulsifier and "el Cheepo" replacement for cocoa butter in chocolate bars made from castor oil. Allegedly, it is safe. Not for me it isn't!
Comes from GMO corn oil, crappy palm oil, and petroleum and leads to harmful reproductive health, organ toxicity, and cancer.
An emulsifier used in creams and lotions and is linked, as well, to cancer as well as nervous system and reproductive toxicity and can cause anaphylactic reactions.
This "goodie" has the distinction of being banned in just about every country in the world except the U.S. It makes you wonder if Monsanto has something to do with it. It's used in breads and has shown to cause renal cancer in rats.
PRESERVATIVES (propionates, propyl gallate, propylene glycol. Propylene glycol monosteatate):
Feet don't fail me know! The only thing good about them is you can avoid them. If you don't - hello migraines, gastrointestinal problems, toxicity to the central nervous system, kidneys, blood system, heart, yeast infections, and vaginal infections.
SOY LECITHIN AND OIL:
If it don't say organic, "give 'er a miss, mate!" Non-organic means GMO.
A great herb as an alternative to sugar. I like the drops.
Dehydrated sugarcane juice.
An artificial sweetener made from chlorine and just as toxic as aspartame. Why couldn't they just leave in the swimming pool?
SUGAR ALCOHOLS (erythritol, lacitol, mannitol, sorbitol, xylitol):
All okay except that lacitol comes from milk products, in case you are lactose intolerant. Xylitol is poisonous to dogs, so be careful where you keep it.
Sulfites destroy vitamin B1 and folic acid. They also contribute to headaches, irritable bowel syndrome, behavioral problems, skin rashes, and asthma. AVOID!
TBHQ (tertiary butylhydoquinone):
A petroleum based, synthetic, food-grade antioxidant used to preserve unsaturated vegetable oils, animal fats, frozen fish, and some chocolate. It is also used in perfume, varnish, lacquer, and resins. It is associated with nausea, vomiting, and ringing in the ears.
TITANIUM DIOXIDE (E171)
Used as an artificial color to make foods white, especially dairy products, skin-care products, toothpaste, sunscreen, paper, paint, and more. Symptoms can be skin rash, muscle pain, and fatigue.
Well, there you go. Maybe I didn't get everything but I sure got enough for you to make an informed choice. And if by chance, it's already in your system how do you get rid of it? The oxygen released by the organic sulfur crystals works miracles.
About the author:
I have been doing a weekly radio show in Honolulu since 1981 called "Health Talk". In 2007 I was "forced" to get a Masters degree in Nutrition because of all the doctors that would call in asking for my credentials. They do not call in anymore. Going to www.healthtalkhawaii.com enables you, among other things, to listen to the shows. I am an activist. In addition to espousing an organic vegan diet for optimum health, I am strongly opposed to GMOs, vaccines, processed foods, MSG, aspartame, fluoridation and everything else that the pimps (Big Pharma, Monsanto and the large food companies) and the hookers (the doctors, the government agencies, the public health officials, and the mainstream media) thrust upon us, the tricks.
After being vaccinated with the DTP vaccine as a child I developed asthma. After taking the organic sulfur crystals (they are harvested from the pine trees in Louisiana) in November of 2008 for 10 days my asthma reversed and has not come back over 4 years later, 18 cases, so far, of autism have been reversed, as has cancer, Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease, osteoarthritis, joint pain, astigmatism, gum disease, increased sexual activity, heavy metal and radiation elimination, parasite elimination, free radicals elimination, faster athletic recovery time, increased blood circulation, reduced inflammation, resistance to getting the flu, reduction of wrinkles, allergy reduction, reduced PMS and monthly period pain, nausea, migraines and so much more. And it's only possible because of the oxygen it releases that floods the cells of the body. The sulfur, as proven by the University of Southampton in England, enables the body to produce vitamin B12 and the essential amino acids. You can find out more about this incredible nutrient also on my website - www.healthtalkhawaii.com - Products and Services. There is also an organic, 70%, cold processed dark chocolate out there that contains sulfur based zeolite, which removes radiation and heavy metals. You can find out more by reading the article "A Dark Chocolate To Die For" on my website under Articles, or by going to www.mywaiora.com/701848.
I am 73. I have been a vegetarian since 1975 years and a vegan since 1990. I have no illnesses and take no meds. I play basketball 2 hours a week, am in 2 softball leagues, racewalk, body surf, do stand-up paddling, do weight workouts and teach women's self defense classes based upon 25 years of Wing Chun training.
My firm belief - if it had a face and a mother or if man made it, don't eat it.
Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/039409_food_additives_ingredients_labels.html#ixzz2N9vvgB00
By Dr. Mercola
Coconut oil has been a dietary and beauty staple for millennia. It’s a powerful destroyer of all kinds of microbes, from viruses to bacteria to protozoa, many of which can be harmful, and provides your body with high-quality fat that is critical for optimal health.
Around 50 percent of the fat in coconut oil is lauric acid, which is rarely found in nature. In fact, coconut oil contains the most lauric acid of any substance on Earth.
Your body converts lauric acid into monolaurin, a monoglyceride that can actually destroy lipid-coated viruses such as HIV and herpes, influenza, measles, gram-negative bacteria, and protozoa such as giardia lamblia.
This is undoubtedly part of what makes it so medicinally useful—both when taken internally and applied externally.
Coconut oil is comprised of medium chain fatty acids (MCFAs) that are easily digested and readily cross cell membranes. MCFAs are immediately converted by your liver into energy rather than being stored as fat. This is in part why I recommend coconut oil as an ideal replacement for non-vegetable carbohydrates.
Coconut oil is easy on your digestive system and does not produce an insulin spike in your bloodstream, so for a quick energy boost, you could simply eat a spoonful of coconut oil, or add it to your food. In the video above, I also share my recipe for a scrumptious yet healthful chocolate treat, courtesy of the healthy fat from coconut oil.
To get more coconut oil into your diet, you can add it to your tea or coffee, in lieu of a sweetener. It will also help improve absorption of fat-soluble vitamins, so taking a spoonful of coconut oil along with your daily vitamins may help boost their effectiveness.
Coconut oil is ideal for all sorts of cooking and baking, as it can withstand higher temperatures without being damaged like many other oils (olive oil, for example, should not be used for cooking for this reason).
Furthermore, coconut oil does not go rancid, which is a huge boon when you’re making homemade concoctions. Coconut oil that has been kept at room temperature for a year has been tested for rancidity, and showed no evidence of it. Since you would expect the small percentage of unsaturated oils naturally contained in coconut oil to become rancid, it seems that the other (saturated) oils have a powerful antioxidant effect.
General Health Benefits of Coconut Oil
In all, coconut oil offers a truly impressive array of health benefits when included in your daily diet. In addition to its antimicrobial properties, coconut oil is beneficial for:Promoting heart health Supporting proper thyroid function
Promoting healthy brain function Strengthening your immune system
Providing an excellent “fuel” for your body and supporting a strong metabolism that can aid in weight loss Maintaining healthy and youthful looking skin
While coconut oil is an ideal food for fostering health and beauty from the inside out, it also has a staggering number of other uses, from topical beauty applications to first aid treatments, to general household cleaning.1, 2 Once you’re done reading through this article, you’ll probably be inspired to stock up for all eventualities!
Coconut Oil Can Replace Dozens of Beauty and Personal Care Products
One of the best personal care products you'll ever find may be sitting in your kitchen cupboard right now. The video above, featuring HolisticHabits3 blogger and coconut oil aficionado Sarah, recounts many of its beauty uses. The second video includes a recipe making your own coconut oil-based deodorant. A previous article by Delicious Obsessions4 also lists no less than 122 creative uses for this household staple, including 21 DIY coconut oil skin care recipes.5 For example, coconut oil can be used to replace the following personal care and beauty products.Makeup remover: Swipe on with a moist cotton ball. Wipe off with clean cotton ball or wet washcloth.
Facial cleanser: Massage a dollop of coconut oil onto face and neck. Wash off with wet washcloth and pat dry.
Body scrub: Mix equal parts coconut oil with organic cane sugar in a glass jar. Use the scrub on dry skin prior to your shower or bath.
Facial scrub: Instead of sugar, mix coconut oil with baking soda, or oatmeal with a dash of cinnamon, for a gentle facial scrub.
Shaving lotion: Apply a thin layer of coconut oil on area to be shaved, and shave as usual. The lauric acid in the coconut oil will also serve as an antiseptic for cuts that result from shaving.
Face and body moisturizer: You can use it either by itself, or add your favorite essential oil. (Make sure you’re using a high quality essential oil that is safe for topical application.) The featured article6 also suggests whipping the coconut oil with an electric mixer to produce a fluffy moisturizer that stays soft and spreadable even in cooler temperatures.
When applied topically, coconut oil helps to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles by helping to keep your connective tissues strong and supple, and aids in exfoliating the outer layer of dead skin cells, making your skin smoother.
Eye cream: Apply a thin layer of coconut oil around your eyes to soften wrinkles and counteract thinning, sagging skin.
Cuticle cream: Simply rub a small amount of coconut oil around your cuticles to soften dry areas.
Deodorant: Applying a small amount of coconut oil directly onto your armpits can help keep odors at bay, courtesy of the oil’s antibacterial properties. If you prefer, you can add a small amount of baking soda, or make a homemade deodorant using coconut oil, baking soda and arrow root powder. For directions, see the second video above. DeliciousObsessions.com also lists additional deodorant recipes using coconut oil as the base.7
Bath soak: Adding coconut oil to your bath can help moisturize dry itchy skin (Make sure to scrub your tub afterward to prevent slipping!). Make sure the water is warmer than 76 degrees Fahrenheit though, otherwise the oil will turn to a solid.
Soap: Coconut oil is one of the base ingredients in many homemade soap recipes, such as this one by NourishingJoy.com8
Lip balm: You can either apply a small amount of coconut oil, as is, or make your own lip balm using coconut oil as one of the base ingredients. You can find all sorts of recipes online, but here’s one by The Liberated Kitchen.9
Toothpaste: Mixed with baking soda, coconut oil can replace your regular toothpaste. The baking soda will gently cleanse while the coconut oil’s antibacterial action may help keep harmful bacteria in check. For recipes using essential oils to spruce up your toothpaste, see DeliciousObsessions.com.10
Insect repellent: Mixing coconut oil with high-quality essential oils may help keep biting insects at bay when applied to exposed skin. Effective choices include: peppermint, lemon balm, rosemary, tea tree oil, neem, citronella (Java Citronella), geraniol, catnip oil (according to one study,11 catnip oil is 10 times more effective than DEET), and/or clear vanilla extract
Hair’s Best Friend
Coconut oil is also known for its hair benefits.12 Most women seem to prefer using it as a pre-shampoo conditioner. Simply massage the coconut oil onto dry hair and leave on for about an hour or longer. You could even leave it on overnight. Just wear a shower cap to protect your pillow. Then, wash and style as usual.
When applied in this manner, the coconut oil inhibits the penetration of water into the hair strands, which would otherwise cause the cuticle, or surface of the hair shaft, to rise, making it prone to damage and breakage. Furthermore, when applied as a pre-wash treatment, a small amount of the coconut oil is able to penetrate deeper into the hair shaft during the wash, when the hair fiber swells slightly.
This can also explain why so many rave about the oil's ability to prevent "the frizzies" in humid weather—this is another feature of its hydrophobic activity. More porous types of hair may find coconut oil particularly beneficial, such as African and chemically treated hair, as well as those suffering with any type of scalp problems, including dandruff.
Oral Health Benefits
As mentioned above, coconut oil mixed with baking soda makes for very simple and inexpensive, yet effective, toothpaste. It’s also a great alternative if you want a fluoride-free toothpaste but don’t want to spend the extra money, since they tend to cost more than most regular, fluoridated toothpaste brands.
Another oral health technique where I believe coconut oil can be quite beneficial is oil pulling. This technique has significantly reduced my plaque buildup, allowing me to go longer between visits to the dental hygienist. (Adding fermented vegetables to my diet has been another game-changer in my oral health.)
Oil pulling is a practice dating back thousands of years, having originated with Ayurvedic medicine. When oil pulling is combined with the antimicrobial power of coconut oil, I believe it can be a very powerful health tool. Sesame oil is traditionally recommended, but it has relatively high concentration of omega-6 oils. Therefore, I believe coconut oil is far superior, and, in my mind, it tastes better. But from a mechanical and biophysical perspective, it is likely that both work.
Oil pulling involves rinsing your mouth with the oil, much like you would with a mouthwash. The oil is “worked” around your mouth by pushing, pulling, and drawing it through your teeth for a period of 15 minutes. If you are obsessive like me and want even better results, you can go for 30-45 minutes. This process allows the oil to “pull out” bacteria, viruses, fungi and other debris. The best time is in the morning before eating breakfast, but it can be done at any time. I try to do it twice a day if my schedule allows. When done, spit out the oil and rinse your mouth with water. Avoid swallowing the oil as it will be loaded with bacteria and whatever potential toxins and debris it has pulled out.
When done correctly, oil pulling has a significant cleansing, detoxifying and healing affect, not only for your mouth and sinuses but for the rest of your body as well. Candida and Streptococcus are common residents in your mouth, and these germs and their toxic waste products can contribute to plaque accumulation and tooth decay, in addition to secondary infections and chronic inflammation throughout your body. Oil pulling may help lessen the overall toxic burden on your immune system by preventing the spread of these organisms from your mouth to the rest of your body, by way of your bloodstream.
Coconut Oil to the Rescue
Besides its usefulness in the kitchen and bathroom, coconut oil deserves a place in your medicine cabinet as well—again courtesy of its antimicrobial and anti-viral activity. For example, coconut oil may be helpful in the treatment of: Ear infections: Place a couple of drops into each ear canal. If the coconut oil has solidified, you can easily liquefy it by placing a small amount in a shot glass or other small container and placing it into a cup of hot water Skin rashes and irritations, including chicken pox and shingles: Simply apply a small amount to the affected area
Fungal and/or yeast infections, such as athlete’s foot and ringworm. For fungal infections, you can mix in a small amount of oregano oil or tea tree oil Bug bites and bee stings
Cold sores: mix in a small amount of oregano oil, and apply at the first signs Frequent nosebleeds may be improved by regularly applying a small amount to the inside of your nostrils
Thrush Hemorrhoids and piles: You may add a small amount of lavender essential oil for added healing power
Vaginal dryness Perineal massage:13 Expectant mothers can use it to massage the perineum daily, starting about a month or so before your due date, to help reduce your chances of tearing and/or the need for an episiotomy
Coconut Oil—More Effective Than Permethrin for Head Lice
According to research published in the European Journal of Pediatrics,14 a combination of coconut oil and anise was found to be nearly twice as effective as the commonly prescribed permethrin lotion for the treatment of head lice. According to the authors:
“We designed a randomized, controlled, parallel group trial involving 100 participants with active head louse infestation to investigate the activity of a coconut and anise spray and to see whether permethrin lotion is still effective, using two applications of product 9 days apart. The spray was significantly more successful (41/50, 82.0%) cures compared with permethrin (21/50, 42.0%...). Per-protocol success was 83.3% and 44.7%, respectively. Thirty-three people reported irritant reactions following alcohol contact with excoriated skin. We concluded that, although permethrin lotion is still effective for some people, the coconut and anise spray can be a significantly more effective alternative treatment.” [Emphasis mine]
Isn’t it wonderful to see how nature provides us with so many effective solutions to so many of our ills? And does so in a way that is oftentimes more effective than our chemical drug concoctions! Another anecdotal Hawaiian head lice treatment15 is to first soak your hair in vinegar and leave it in to dry (don’t rinse). Next, coat your hair with coconut oil over night. I’d recommend sleeping with a shower cap to protect your bedding. The following day, the nits reportedly comb out easily.
14 Surprising Uses for Coconut Oil Around the House
Last but not least, coconut oil can be used for a number of household tasks otherwise relegated to more costly, and potentially toxic, alternatives. Following are 14 creative yet practical uses for this fantastic oil:1. Clean, condition and sanitize your wooden cutting board. Use whenever the wood starts to look dry.
2. Use when making compost tea16 for your garden to reduce foam.
3. Use as a metal polish. Make sure to test a small area first.
4. Moisturize and soften leather goods as you would using other leather conditioners.
5. Season your cast iron pots and pans17 using coconut oil in lieu of lard or corn oil.
6. Lubricate squeaky hinges and sticky mechanisms with coconut oil instead of WD-40.
7. Clean and condition wooden furniture in lieu of furniture polish. Make sure to test a small area first.
8. Lubricate your guitar strings.
9. Clean soap scum from your shower using a small dollop of coconut oil on a damp cloth. Spray the area with white vinegar and wipe dry with a lint-free cloth.
10. Clean your hands and paint brushes with coconut oil after using oil-based paints, in lieu of mineral spirits.
11. Clean and condition the inside of your car by adding a small amount to a soft lint-free cloth. Rub in and wipe off excess.
12. Clean and sanitize your mouth guard by applying a thin layer of coconut oil. Leave the coconut oil on when not in use. Rinse before using.
13. Cleanse and add a glossy finish to indoor plants by wiping the leaves with a small amount of coconut oil on a lint-free cloth.
14. Remove chewing gum from virtually any area, including carpets and hair.
A Guide to Your Bowel Movements
The quality of your bowel movements is nature's way of telling you the level of health you are experiencing. Just as you need to monitor what goes in your mouth, stool investigation will give you valuable information regarding your highway to health, the digestive tract.
Your digestive tract is the assembly line for the food you eat. Your bowel movements can give you a clear picture daily as to whether the most important process of health is functioning properly.
Learning what to look for in your bowel movements can prevent future illness and suffering. We have been taught to feel embarrassed about talking or even thinking about our bowel movements. Do not let this get in the way of your vibrant health.
The large intestine is the sewer system of your body. Mismanagement will only cause the digestive tract to become a cesspool. How does the rest of the body become toxic? The answer is mismanagement of the large intestine. You reabsorb your own toxic waste.
There is a reason for the large intestine to be the first organ developed in the fetus. It is the most important and influential organ of the body. Without proper sanitation, life cannot exist.
The best signs that your sewer system is not functioning properly are: bad breath, smelly stool, and you require the use of deodorant.
What indicates a good bowel movement is, firstly, that the stool floats. Floating stools are both a blessing and a curse. They can float because they are so full of bubbles and gas that they are abnormal. On the other hand, they float because they have too much fat in them, or they can float because they are high in fiber, which is the kind we want.
We want stools that do not mark the toilet bowel. We want them to hang together and not be pebbles, non-putrefactive, have no undigested food particles, a large volume, a wiping clean, and most important: a sense of complete evacuation. Wiping clean should only take a few pieces of toilet paper – not a roll. It is amazing how often people do NOT have this sense of complete evacuation. We want one or more bowel movements every day.
Many people tell me they have 3-5 bowel movements/day believing this is the ideal for everyone. It MAY be the ideal for you since, in a perfect world, if you eat a meal, having a healthy bowel movement 15-20 minutes tells us your peristaltic action is working just fine. Nursing babies do this routinely. Unfortunately, it may also indicate a bowel condition such as irritable bowel, colitis, or the presence of a filmy covering of mucoid plague on the colon walls. Have you had 3-5 bowel movements/day since childhood or did this start in adulthood? If it started in adulthood, was it after a large cleanse, colonics, or high enemas or did it simply evolve? Do you have VAT (visceral adipose tissue) which is belly fat or are you thin? Each of these questions indicates different issues within the colon.
HOW TO TELL IF ONE HAS A GOOD STOOL:
*Is it soft, firm? (you want it to be firm enough to be fully formed as a tube)
*Color – is it light brown, medium?
*Is it free from foul smell and odors?
*Does it float (due to fiber content) or float, then sink (also okay)?
*Do you have to strain or wait for it to evacuate? (neither is good)
*Does elimination take place 15-20 minutes after a meal?
*Is it 5 inches long? (This is assuming you have three/day for a total of 15”/day)
*Is it 1 to 1-1/2 inches in diameter?
*Is it banana shaped?
*Bright red blood means that the blood is from the anus. It could be from an internal hemorrhoid or from a fistula or other rectal problem.
*Dark red blood has come from farther up in the digestive system – could mean ulcers, or colitis in the splenic flexure area.
*Blackish-red blood indicates ulceration and bleeding around the hepatic flexure.
*Blood totally black in color could be from the stomach.
*High protein diets with mostly meat produce a dark colored stool. Spinach and other vegetables containing chlorophyll can stain stools green; dark colored food such as blackberries or cherries will stain the stool a darker color.
*Yellow or orange stool indicates insufficient bile and is mixed with intestinal contents, or a sign of jaundice or liver disease. Carrot juice can also make stools turn orange color.
*A reddish wine colored stool can be caused from eating beets.
*Iron medication or anemia could cause slate grey or blackish stool.
*Excess protein stool is black.
*Very dark, olive blue stool may indicate a diet too rich in protein and fat – too much putrefaction within the bowel.
*Dark, hard, offensive smelling stool may indicate very severe bleeding high in the intestinal region. It may come from an ulcer in the stomach, duodenum, colitis, or Crohn's Disease.
*Grey or chicken soup-like stool can indicate liver or gall bladder trouble.
*A hard, black stool means constipation.
*Flat and thin-like stool indicates an obstruction in the lower part of the bowel or spastic colitis (usually around the splenic flexure of sigmoid area).
*A stool with many small bubbles (bead-like) shows fermentative conditions.
*A slick, slimy stool could be caused from jaundice.
A normal stool has no odor. If it is offensive smelling, then a lot of putrefaction and rotting has occurred and there is a digestive problem, which could include constipation or improper food combining. Bacteria, both dead and alive, usually constitute a quarter to half of the dried feces. Stools should normally be soft yet firm enough to stay in a tube shape, a medium brown color, and should float or float, then sink.
September 30, 2007, Updated August 3, 2009
By Susan M. Callahan, Associate Editor and Featured Columnist
What do heart disease and a paper cut have in common? The answer
Is that both are injuries and, surprisingly, the body’s response to each
Of these injuries is fundamentally the same. Both injuries create
Inflammation. Almost everyone knows what inflammation looks like
When it occurs on the skin--- you get a cut, it gets infected, the skin
Becomes swollen with pus. Or you ram your knee into the end of the
Coffee table, and the knee swells up. How does inflammation connect
To diseases such as heart disease, diabetes and stroke?
Inside the body, when certain injuries occur, the same process of
Inflammation occurs. Your arteries, for example, become inflamed if they are injured. How are they injured? Arteries can become “cut”, injured in fact, when
They are nicked . Injuries to arteries occur when jagged molecules
Called “free radicals” ram into them, much like out of control race cars
Crashing against the walls of a speedway. Reduce the number of free
Radicals, reduce injury. It turns out that free radicals are released
Whenever we eat foods high in unsaturated fat or sugar. Eat a fried
Chicken dinner cooked in lard or butter, and your arteries literally
Spasm for hours. Or eat a piece of cheesecake and the arteries spasm
From the beating they take from the bombardment of free radicals
Against their walls. By the way, free radicals are also the elements
Which age you, in the same way as the free radicals in air age an
Apple, turning it brown. Once nicked, the body’s response is to patch up the nicks using cholesterol, the body’s equivalent of spackling compound. There are
two types of spackle. Good spackle is soft and smooth—that is the so-
Called good cholesterol, HDL. Bad spackle is small, and rough—the
So-called bad cholesterol, LDL. If your blood has enough good
Spackle in it, when the arteries are cut, the chances are the body will
Send good spackle. If the spackle is smooth, the cut is repaired
Smoothly. If the spackle is rough, the cut is not repaired smoothly and
Jagged edges ---plaque---form. As a result, when the river of blood
Flows past the repair, part of the jagged messy plaque job can break
Off. The plaque can travel down the river of blood to your heart and cause an attack. Or it can travel to your brain and cause a stroke.
That’s the bad news.
The good news is that you can reduce or even eliminate free radicals
With nutrition and exercise. Vegetables, especially the colorful green,
Red and yellow ones, are some of the most effective foods that
Neutralize free radicals. Also, omega 3 fatty acids found in fatty fish
Such as salmon and sardines and nuts like walnuts can lower Inflammation in the body. These foods lower inflammation throughout the body, wherever it occurs.The anti-inflammatory action of vegetables and fish may be one reason studies have found that eating salmon and oily fish retards the
Progression of dementia, heart disease and may even aid the body in fighting cancer.
You're just getting started. Understand how certain foods can help to Heal your body and improve your overall health: Foods That Reduce
Blood Pressure / Foods That Lower Your Blood Sugar /Foods That
Shrink Your Waist / Swollen Ankles -Causes and Cures
By Dr. Mercola
Americans are slowly waking up to the sad fact that much of the food sold in the US is far inferior to the same foods sold in other nations. In fact, many of the foods you eat are BANNED in other countries.
Here, I’ll review 10 American foods that are banned elsewhere, which were featured in a recent MSN article.1
Seeing how the overall health of Americans is so much lower than other industrialized countries, you can’t help but wonder whether toxic foods such as these might play a role in our skyrocketing disease rates.
#1: Farm-Raised Salmon
If you want to maximize health benefits from fish, you want to steer clear of farmed fish, particularly farmed salmon fed dangerous chemicals. Wild salmon gets its bright pinkish-red color from natural carotenoids in their diet. Farmed salmon, on the other hand, are raised on a wholly unnatural diet of grains (including genetically engineered varieties), plus a concoction of antibiotics and other drugs and chemicals not shown to be safe for humans.
This diet leaves the fish with unappetizing grayish flesh so to compensate, they’re fed synthetic astaxanthin made from petrochemicals, which has not been approved for human consumption and has well known toxicities. According to the featured article, some studies suggest it can potentially damage your eyesight. More details are available in yesterday’s article.
Where it's banned: Australia and New Zealand
How can you tell whether a salmon is wild or farm-raised? The flesh of wild sockeye salmon is bright red, courtesy of its natural astaxanthin content. It’s also very lean, so the fat marks, those white stripes you see in the meat, are very thin. If the fish is pale pink with wide fat marks, the salmon is farmed.
Avoid Atlantic salmon, as typically salmon labeled "Atlantic Salmon" currently comes from fish farms. The two designations you want to look for are: “Alaskan salmon,” and “sockeye salmon,” as Alaskan sockeye is not allowed to be farmed. Please realize that the vast majority of all salmon sold in restaurants is farm raised.
So canned salmon labeled "Alaskan Salmon" is a good bet, and if you find sockeye salmon, it's bound to be wild. Again, you can tell sockeye salmon from other salmon by its color; its flesh is bright red opposed to pink, courtesy of its superior astaxanthin content. Sockeye salmon actually has one of the highest concentrations of astaxanthin of any food.
#2: Genetically Engineered Papaya
Most Hawaiian papaya is now genetically engineered to be resistant to ringspot virus. Mounting research now shows that animals fed genetically engineered foods, such as corn and soy, suffer a wide range of maladies, including intestinal damage, multiple-organ damage, massive tumors, birth defects, premature death, and near complete sterility by the third generation of offspring. Unfortunately, the gigantic human lab experiment is only about 10 years old, so we are likely decades away from tabulating the human casualties.
Where it's banned: The European Union
Unfortunately, it’s clear that the US government is not in a position to make reasonable and responsible decisions related to genetically engineered foods at this point, when you consider the fact that the Obama administration has placed former Monsanto attorney and Vice President, Michael Taylor, in charge of US food safety, and serious conflicts of interest even reign supreme within the US Supreme Court! That’s right. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas is also a former Monsanto attorney, but refuses to acknowledge any conflict of interest.
#3: Ractopamine-Tainted Meat
The beta agonist drug ractopamine (a repartitioning agent that increases protein synthesis) was recruited for livestock use when researchers found that the drug, used in asthma, made mice more muscular. This reduces the overall fat content of the meat. Ractopamine is currently used in about 45 percent of US pigs, 30 percent of ration-fed cattle, and an unknown percentage of turkeys are pumped full of this drug in the days leading up to slaughter. Up to 20 percent of ractopamine remains in the meat you buy from the supermarket, according to veterinarian Michael W. Fox.
Since 1998, more than 1,700 people have been "poisoned" from eating pigs fed the drug, and ractopamine is banned from use in food animals in no less than 160 different countries due to its harmful health effects! Effective February 11, 2013, Russia issued a ban on US meat imports, slated to last until the US agrees to certify that the meat is ractopamine-free. At present, the US does not even test for the presence of this drug in meats sold. In animals, ractopamine is linked to reductions in reproductive function, increase of mastitis in dairy herds, and increased death and disability. It’s also known to affect the human cardiovascular system, and is thought to be responsible for hyperactivity, and may cause chromosomal abnormalities and behavioral changes.
Where it's banned: 160 countries across Europe, Russia, mainland China and Republic of China (Taiwan)
#4: Flame Retardant Drinks
If you live in the US and drink Mountain Dew and some other citrus-flavored sodas and sports drinks, then you are also getting a dose of a synthetic chemical called brominated vegetable oil (BVO), which was originally patented by chemical companies as a flame retardant.
BVO has been shown to bioaccumulate in human tissue and breast milk, and animal studies have found it causes reproductive and behavioral problems in large doses. Bromine is a central nervous system depressant, and a common endocrine disruptor. It’s part of the halide family, a group of elements that includes fluorine, chlorine and iodine. When ingested, bromine competes for the same receptors that are used to capture iodine. This can lead to iodine deficiency, which can have a very detrimental impact on your health. Bromine toxicity can manifest as skin rashes, acne, loss of appetite, fatigue, and cardiac arrhythmias. According to the featured article:
"The FDA has flip-flopped on BVO's safety originally classifying it as 'generally recognized as safe' but reversing that call now defining it as an 'interim food additive' a category reserved for possibly questionable substances used in food."
Where it's banned: Europe and Japan
#5: Processed Foods Containing Artificial Food Colors and Dyes
More than 3,000 food additives -- preservatives, flavorings, colors and other ingredients -- are added to US foods, including infant foods and foods targeted to young children. Meanwhile, many of these are banned in other countries, based on research showing toxicity and hazardous health effects, especially with respect to adverse effects on children’s behavior. For example, as reported in the featured article:
“Boxed Mac & Cheese, cheddar flavored crackers, Jell-O and many kids' cereals contain red 40, yellow 5, yellow 6 and/or blue 2, the most popularly-used dyes in the United States. Research has shown this rainbow of additives can cause behavioral problems as well as cancer, birth defects and other health problems in laboratory animals. Red 40 and yellow 6 are also suspected of causing an allergy-like hypersensitivity reaction in children. The Center for Science in the Public Interest reports that some dyes are also "contaminated with known carcinogens.”
In countries where these food colors and dyes are banned, food companies like Kraft employ natural colorants instead, such as paprika extract, beetroot, and annatto. The food blogger and activist Vani Hari, better known as “Food Babe,” recently launched a Change.org petition2 asking Kraft to remove artificial dyes from American Mac & Cheese to protect American children from the well-known dangers of these dyes.
Where it's banned: Norway and Austria. In 2009, the British government advised companies to stop using food dyes by the end of that year. The European Union also requires a warning notice on most foods containing dyes.
#6: Arsenic-Laced Chicken
Arsenic-based drugs are approved for use in animal feed in the US because they make animals grow quicker and make the meat appear pinker (i.e. "fresher"). The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has stated these products are safe because they contain organic arsenic, which is less toxic than the other inorganic form, which is a known carcinogen.
The problem is, scientific reports surfaced stating that the organic arsenic could transform into inorganic arsenic, which has been found in elevated levels in supermarket chickens. The inorganic arsenic also contaminates manure where it can eventually migrate into drinking water and may also be causing heightened arsenic levels in US rice.
In 2011, Pfizer announced it would voluntarily stop marketing its arsenic-based feed additive Roxarsone, but there are still several others on the market. Several environmental groups have filed a lawsuit against the FDA calling for their removal from the market. In the European Union, meanwhile, arsenic-based compounds have never been approved as safe for animal feed.
Where it's banned: The European Union
#7: Bread with Potassium Bromate
You might not be aware of this, but nearly every time you eat bread in a restaurant or consume a hamburger or hotdog bun you are consuming bromide, as it is commonly used in flours. 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.
Bromated flour is “enriched” with potassium bromate. Commercial baking companies claim it makes the dough more elastic and better able to stand up to bread hooks. However, Pepperidge Farm and other successful companies manage to use only unbromated flour without any of these so-called “structural problems.” Studies have linked potassium bromate to kidney and nervous system damage, thyroid problems, gastrointestinal discomfort, and cancer. The International Agency for Research on Cancer classifies potassium bromate as a possible carcinogen.
Where it's banned: Canada, China and the EU
Olestra, aka Olean, created by Procter & Gamble, is a calorie- and cholesterol-free fat substitute used in fat-free snacks like chips and French fries. Three years ago, Time Magazine3 named it one of the worst 50 inventions ever, but that hasn’t stopped food companies from using it to satisfy people’s mistaken belief that a fat-free snack is a healthier snack. According to the featured article:
“Not only did a 2011 study from Purdue University conclude rats fed potato chips made with Olean gained weight, there have been several reports of adverse intestinal reactions to the fake fat including diarrhea, cramps and leaky bowels. And because it interferes with the absorption of fat soluble vitamins such as A, D, E and K, the FDA requires these vitamins be added to any product made with Olean or olestra.”
Where it's banned: The UK and Canada
#9: Preservatives BHA and BHT
BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole) and BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene) are commonly used preservatives that can be found in breakfast cereal, nut mixes, chewing gum, butter spread, meat, dehydrated potatoes, and beer, just to name a few. BHA is known to cause cancer in rats, and may be a cancer-causing agent in humans as well. In fact, according to the US Department of Health and Human Services, National Toxicology Program's 2011 Report on Carcinogens, BHA "is reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen.” It may also trigger allergic reactions and hyperactivity, while BHT can cause organ system toxicity.
Where it's banned: The UK doesn't allow BHA in infant foods. BHA and BHT are also banned in parts of the European Union and Japan.
#10: Milk and Dairy Products Laced with rBGH
Recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH) is the largest selling dairy animal drug in America. RBGH is a synthetic version of natural bovine somatotropin (BST), a hormone produced in cows' pituitary glands. Monsanto developed the recombinant version from genetically engineered E. coli bacteria and markets it under the brand name "Posilac."
It’s injected into cows to increase milk production, but it is banned in at least 30 other nations because of its dangers to human health, which include an increased risk for colorectal, prostate, and breast cancer by promoting conversion of normal tissue cells into cancerous ones. Non-organic dairy farms frequently have rBGH-injected cows that suffer at least 16 different adverse health conditions, including very high rates of mastitis that contaminate milk with pus and antibiotics.
"According to the American Cancer Society, the increased use of antibiotics to treat this type of rBGH-induced inflammation 'does promote the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, but the extent to which these are transmitted to humans is unclear,'" the featured article states.
Many have tried to inform the public of the risks of using this hormone in dairy cows, but their attempts have been met with overwhelming opposition by the powerful dairy and pharmaceutical industries, and their government liaisons. In 1997, two Fox-affiliate investigative journalists, Jane Akre and Steve Wilson, attempted to air a program exposing the truth about the dangers of rBGH. Lawyers for Monsanto, a major advertiser with the Florida network, sent letters promising "dire consequences" if the story aired.
Despite decades of evidence about the dangers of rBGH, the FDA still maintains it's safe for human consumption and ignores scientific evidence to the contrary. In 1999, the United Nations Safety Agency ruled unanimously not to endorse or set safety standards for rBGH milk, which has effectively resulted in an international ban on US milk.4 The Cancer Prevention Coalition, trying for years to get the use of rBGH by the dairy industry banned, resubmitted a petition to FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg, MD, in January 2010.5 Although the FDA stubbornly sticks to its position that milk from rBGH-treated cows is no different than milk from untreated cows, this is just plain false and is not supported by science. The only way to avoid rBGH is to look for products labeled as “rBGH-free” or “No rBGH.”
Where it's banned: Australia, New Zealand, Israel, EU and Canada
Take Control of Your Health with REAL Food
There are many other examples where the US federal regulatory agencies have sold out to industry at the expense of your health, while other countries have chosen to embrace the precautionary principle in order to protect their citizens. If you want to avoid these questionable foods and other potentially harmful ingredients permitted in the US food supply, then ditching processed foods entirely is your best option. About 90 percent of the money Americans spend on food is spent on processed foods, so there is massive room for improvement in this area for most people.
Next, you’ll want to swap out your regular meat sources to organic, grass-fed/pasture-raised versions of beef and poultry. The same goes for dairy products and animal by-products such as eggs.
Swapping your processed-food diet for one that focuses on fresh whole foods is a necessity if you value your health. For a step-by-step guide to make this a reality in your own life, whether you live in the US or elsewhere, simply follow the advice in my optimized nutrition plan, starting with the beginner plan first.
by Melissa Breyer
How many ways can you use salt? According to the Salt Institute, about 14,000! I can’t think of another more versatile mineral. The use of salt to preserve food was one of the early cornerstones of civilization (preservation lessened the dependence on seasonal food, and provided sustenance for traveling over long distances). However, salt was very difficult to obtain. With modern production methods, nowadays salt is the most common and readily available nonmetallic mineral in the world; in fact, the supply of salt is inexhaustible.
Since at least medieval times salt (sodium chloride) has been used for cleaning–and ensuing generations have continued to rely on it for all kinds of nifty tricks around the house. (these were the days before toxic chemicals promised the convenience of an easy fix!) So with its non-toxic friendliness and top-dog status as an endlessly abundant resource, let’s jump on the granny bandwagon and swap out some non-toxic solutions for ample, innocuous and inexpensive salt.
But first, let my inner science geek pipe in for just a second (although if I eat dinner with you, I promise not to ask you to please pass the sodium chloride). There is a whole class of chemical compounds called “salts,” but the salt we’re talking about is good old sodium chloride–an ionic compound with the formula NaCl. Sodium chloride is the salt most responsible for the salinity of the oceans and of the extracellular fluid of many multicellular organisms (which is why it is vital for us), and the major ingredient in edible salt.
There are a number of forms of salt produced for consumption (and by default, housekeeping!): unrefined salt (such as sea salt), refined salt (table salt), and iodized salt. The best salts for consumption are the most unrefined salts like sea salt and himalayan salt which are the highest in organic minerals. But for cleaning purposes you can use any type of salt. In case you're wondering Epsom salt is an entirely different animal: magnesium sulfate to be exact (which is a salt that I consider to be, essentially, miraculous).
Okay, lab coat off, Hints-from-Heloise hat on. Here are just a few of the many ways you can put salt to good use in your home:
Salt works as an effective yet gentle scouring agent. Salt also serves as a catalyst for other ingredients, such as vinegar, to boost cleaning and deodorizing action. For a basic soft scrub, make a paste with lots of salt, baking soda and dish soap and use on appliances, enamel, porcelain, etc.
Clean sink drains. Pour salt mixed with hot water down the kitchen sink regularly to deodorize and keep grease from building up.
Remove water rings. Gently rub a thin paste of salt and vegetable oil on the white marks caused by beverage glasses and hot dishes, on wooden tables.
Clean greasy pans. Cast-iron skillets can be cleaned with a good sprinkling of salt and paper towels.
Clean stained cups. Mix salt with a dab of dish soap to make a soft scrub for stubborn coffee and tea stains.
Clean refrigerators. A mix of salt and soda water can be used to wipe out and deodorize the inside of your refrigerator, a nice way to keep chemical-y cleaners away from your food.
Clean brass or copper. Mix equal parts of salt, flour and vinegar to make a paste, and rub the paste on the metal. After letting it sit for an hour, clean with a soft cloth or brush and buff with a dry cloth.
Clean rust. Mix salt and cream of tartar with just enough water to make a paste. Rub on rust, let dry, brush off and buff with a dry, soft cloth. You can also use the same method with a mix of salt and lemon.
Clean a glass coffee pot. Every diner waitress’ favorite tip: add salt and ice cubes to a coffee pot, swirl around vigorously, and rinse. The salt scours the bottom, and the ice helps to agitate it more for a better scrub.
Attack wine spills. If your tipsy aunt tips her wine on the cotton or linen tablecloth, blot up as much as possible and immediately cover the wine with a pile of salt, which will help pull the remaining wine away from the fiber. After dinner, soak the tablecloth in cold water for thirty minutes before laundering. (Also works on clothing.)
Quell oversudsing. Since of course we are all very careful in how much detergent we use in our laundry, we never have too many suds. But if…you can eliminate excess suds with a sprinkle of salt.
Dry clothes in the winter. Use salt in the final laundry rinse to prevent clothes from freezing if you use an outdoor clothes line in the winter.
Brighten colors. Wash colored curtains or washable fiber rugs in a saltwater solution to brighten the colors. Brighten faded rugs and carpets by rubbing them briskly with a cloth that has been dipped in a strong saltwater solution and wrung out.
Remove perspiration stains. Add four tablespoons of salt to one quart of hot water and sponge the fabric with the solution until stains fade.
Remove blood stains. Soak the stained cloth in cold saltwater, then launder in warm, soapy water and boil after the wash. (Use only on cotton, linen or other natural fibers that can take high heat.)
Tackle mildew or rust stains. Moisten stained spots with a mixture of lemon juice and salt, then spread the item in the sun for bleaching–then rinse and dry.
Clean a gunky iron bottom. Sprinkle a little salt on a piece of paper and run the hot iron over it to remove rough, sticky spots.
Set color. Salt is used commonly in the textile industry, but works at home too. If a dye isn’t colorfast, soak the garment for an hour in 1/2 gallon of water to which you’ve added 1/2 cup vinegar and 1/2 cup salt, then rinse. If rinse water has any color in it, repeat. Use only on single-colored fabric or madras. If the item is multicolored, dry-clean it to avoid running all of the colors together.
Around The House
Deter ants. Sprinkle salt at doorways, window sills and anywhere else ants sneak into your house. Ants don’t like to walk on salt.
Extinguish grease fires. Keep a box of salt near your stove and oven, and if a grease fire flares up, douse the flames with salt. (Never use water on grease fires; it will splatter the burning grease.) When salt is applied to fire, it acts like a heat sink and dissipates the heat from the fire–it also forms an oxygen-excluding crust to smother the fire.
Drip-proof candles. If you soak new candles in a strong salt solution for a few hours, then dry them well, they will not drip as much when you burn them.
Keep cut flowers fresh. A dash of salt added to the water in a flower vase will keep cut flowers fresh longer. (You can also try an aspirin or a dash of sugar for the same effect.)
Arrange artificial flowers. Artificial flowers can be held in place by pouring salt into the vase, adding a little cold water and then arranging the flowers. The salt becomes solid as it dries and holds the flowers in place.
Make play dough. Use 1 cup flour, 1/2 cup salt, 1 cup water, 2 tablespoons oil and 2 tablespoons cream of tartar. Stir together flour, cream of tartar, salt and oil, and slowly add water. Cook over medium heat stirring frequently until dough becomes stiff. Spread onto wax paper and let cool. Knead the dough with your hands until it reaches a good play dough consistency. (Read about juice dyes here.)
Repair walls. To fill nail holes, fix chips or other small dings in white sheetrock or plaster walls, mix 2 tablespoons salt and 2 tablespoons cornstarch, then add enough water (about 5 teaspoons) to make a thick paste. Use the paste to fill the holes.
Deter patio weeds. If weeds or grass grow between bricks or blocks in your patio, sidewalk or driveway, carefully spread salt between the cracks, then sprinkle with water or wait for rain to wet it down.
Kill poison ivy. Mix three pounds of salt with a gallon of soapy water (use a gentle dish soap) and apply to leaves and stems with a sprayer, avoiding any plant life that you want to keep.
De-ice sidewalks and driveways. One of the oldest tricks in the book! Lightly sprinkle rock salt on walks and driveways to keep snow and ice from bonding to the pavement and allow for easier shoveling/scraping. But don’t overdo it; use the salt sensibly to avoid damage to plants and paws.
Tame a wild barbeque. Toss a bit of salt on flames from food dripping in barbecue grills to reduce the flames and calm the smoke without cooling the coals (like water does).
Extend toothbrush life. Soak toothbrushes in salt water before your first use; they’ll last longer
Clean teeth. Use one part fine salt to two parts baking soda–dip your toothbrush in the mix and brush as usual. You can also use the same mix dissolved in water for orthodontic appliances.
Rinse your mouth. Mix equal parts salt and baking soda in water for a fresh and deodorizing mouth rinse.
Ease mouth problems. For cankers, abscesses and other mouth sores, rinse your mouth with a weak solution of warm salt water several times a day.
Relieve bee sting pain. Ouch? Immediately dampen area and pack on a small pile of salt to reduce pain and swelling. More bee-sting tips here.
Treat mosquito bites. A saltwater soak can do wonders for that special mosquito-bite itch–a poultice of salt mixed with olive oil can help too.
Treat poison ivy. Same method as for treating mosquito bites. (Salt doesn’t seem to distinguish between itches.)
Have an exfoliating massage. After bathing and while still wet give yourself a massage with dry salt. It freshens skin and boosts circulation.
Ease throat pain. Mix salt and warm water, gargle to relieve a sore throat.
By Dr. Mercola
October is breast cancer awareness month and an ideal time to learn all you can about the steps you can take to prevent the most common cancer affecting women in the developed world.
The information that follows will be much different from what is often spouted from anti-cancer organizations like the American Cancer Society (ACS), as -- unlike ACS -- I have no financial ties to both makers of mammography equipment and cancer drugs.
My advice for cancer prevention is much more straightforward, involving simple lifestyle strategies that virtually everyone has the power to make.
All you need to become empowered to make these cancer-preventive changes is knowledge, and that is what I seek to give you by the time you finish reading this comment … I suggest you not only learn this information for your own benefit, but also share it with other women in your life as well.
Using the Wrong Antiperspirant May Influence Your Breast Cancer Risk
Putting on antiperspirant is a routine part of most people's day, and you may not think much about it. But here's why you should: if you use one containing aluminum, you could be increasing your risk of breast cancer.
Antiperspirants work by clogging, closing, or blocking the pores that release sweat under your arms -- with the active ingredient being aluminum. Not only does this block one of your body's routes for detoxification (releasing toxins via your underarm sweat), but it raises concerns about where these metals are going once you roll them (or spray them) on.
Research, including one study published this year in the Journal of Applied Toxicology, has shown that the aluminum is not only absorbed by your body, but is deposited in your breast tissue and even can be found in nipple aspirate fluid a fluid present in the breast duct tree that mirrors the microenvironment in your breast. Researchers determined that the mean level of aluminum in nipple aspirate fluid was significantly higher in breast cancer-affected women compared to healthy women, which may suggest a role for raised levels of aluminum as a biomarker for identification of women at higher risk of developing breast cancer.
Cancer-Causing Aluminum From Antiperspirant May Collect in Your Breasts
In a 2007 study published in the Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry, researchers tested breast samples from 17 breast-cancer patients who had undergone mastectomies. The women who used antiperspirants had deposits of aluminum in their outer breast tissue. Concentrations of aluminum were higher in the tissue closest to the underarm than in the central breast.
Why is this a glaring red flag?
Aluminum is not normally found in the human body, so this study was a pretty clear sign that the metal was being absorbed from antiperspirant sprays and roll-ons. Please note that aluminum is typically only found in antiperspirants. If you are using a deodorant-only product it is unlikely to contain aluminum but might contain other chemicals that could be a concern.
Aluminum salts can account for 25 percent of the volume of some antiperspirants, and a review of the common sources of aluminum exposure for humans found that antiperspirant use can significantly increase the amount of aluminum absorbed by your body. According to the review, after a single underarm application of antiperspirant, about .012 percent of the aluminum may be absorbed.
This may not sound like much until you multiply it by one or more times a day for a lifetime, which adds up to massive exposure to aluminum -- a poison that is not supposed to be in your body, and may be more toxic than mercury. Aluminum salts can mimic the hormone estrogen, and chemicals that imitate that hormone are known to increase breast cancer risk. Animal studies have also found that aluminum can cause cancer. Aside from vaccinations, your antiperspirant may be your largest source of exposure to this poisonous metal!
You Need to be Careful with Natural Deodorants, Too
There are many brands of chemical-free, aluminum-free deodorants on the market, and many of these are safe alternatives. And as a general rule, deodorants tend to be less problematic than antiperspirants, as they work by neutralizing the smell of your sweat and by antiseptic action against bacteria, rather than by preventing sweating. As such, some deodorants do not contain any aluminum, but you've got to be careful about this. While many claim to be aluminum-free, they are referring to aluminum chlorohydrate, aluminum chloride, aluminum hydroxybromide or aluminum zirconium, which are the types most commonly used in antiperspirants and deodorants.
"Crystal" deodorant stones, which are a popular natural deodorant alternative often used by health-conscious shoppers looking to avoid aluminum, often claim to be aluminum-free, but some actually contain a different type of compound known as an alum, the most common form being potassium alum, also known as potassium aluminum sulfate.
Potassium Alum or Ammonium Alum are natural mineral salts made up of molecules that are too large to be absorbed by your skin. They form a protective layer on your skin that inhibits the growth of odor-causing bacteria. These deodorants are recommended by many cancer treatment centers, but while this may be a better alternative to most antiperspirants and deodorants on the market, it is not completely aluminum-free.
So be sure, when choosing a natural deodorant alternative, that it truly is made of toxin-free ingredients. Aluminum is just one of them -- you can find other chemical toxins to avoid in your personal care products here. Alternatively, just use plain soap and water. This is what I use, typically in the morning and after I exercise.
Additionally, last year I found an ever more effective strategy and that is to expose your armpits to sunshine. Essentially you tan your armpits. The UVB rays in the sunlight are highly effective germicidal agents and sterilize your armpits in addition to raising your levels of vitamin D sulfate to healthy levels.
Do Bras Cause Breast Cancer?
You might be surprised to hear this, but wearing certain types of bras might not be in your best interest. In fact, if you're in the habit of wearing the most popular styles, you may be setting yourself up for some potentially serious health problems. This includes:
Many physicians and researchers agree that wearing a tight-fitting bra can cut off lymph drainage, which may contribute to the development of breast cancer because your body will be less able to excrete all the toxins you’re exposed to on a daily basis. Aluminum from antiperspirants is one potentially dangerous source of toxins that can accumulate if your lymph drainage is impaired.
You can avoid some of the improper drainage issues if you wear a bra that is properly fitted, so I suggest you make an appointment with a bra-fitting specialist to help you get the proper fit.
Nearly all underwire bras contain metal underwires coated with plastic. It is the metal that could be problematic for your long-term health.
In his 1975 article, Chinese Lessons For Modern Chiropractors, Dr. George Goodheart – known as “the father of Applied Kinesiology” -- explained what he calls the "Antenna Effect." Essentially, he discovered that by taping a small metal ball over an acupuncture point, you could achieve longer-term stimulation to that point in question. This discovery led to what are now known as AcuAids -- small magnetic patches that are used by thousands of doctors across the world.
However, just like a small metal ball, any metal constantly applied to any given energy channel or point on your body can have the same stimulating effect. Over time, the continued stimulation can cause a subsequent decrease in function of important neuro-lymphatic reflex points located below your breasts.
In addition, the metal wire may act as an antenna attracting electromagnetic fields, which may also increase your risk of breast cancer. Fortunately, you can easily remove the piece of metal wire and replace it with a plastic rod of comparable size, which will provide the support but not simulate the antenna effect.
Wearing a Bra in General…
There are few solid studies on bra wearing and breast cancer, but one of the most compelling was completed by medical anthropologists Sydney Singer and Soma Grismaijer -- authors of Dressed to Kill: The Link Between Breast Cancer and Bras. The study of over 4,000 women found that women who do not wear bras have a much lower risk of breast cancer:
Their findings included:
Women who wore their bras 24 hours per day had a 3 out of 4 chance of developing breast cancer
Women who wore bras more than 12 hour per day, but not to bed, had a 1 out of 7 risk
Women who wore their bras less than 12 hours per day had a 1 out of 52 risk
Women who wore bras rarely or never had a 1 out of 168 chance of getting breast cancer
When comparing women who wore their bras 24 hours a day with those who did not wear bras at all, there was a 125-fold difference in risk. Based on the results of this study, the link between bras and breast cancer is about three times greater than the link between cigarette smoking and cancer.
Although this study did not control for other risk factors, which could have skewed their results, other studies have found similar compelling links. For example, a group of Japanese researchers found that wearing a girdle or bra can lower your levels of melatonin by 60 percent. The hormone melatonin is intimately involved with the regulation of your sleep cycles, and numerous studies have shown that melatonin has anti-cancer activities.
Setting the Record Straight About Mammograms
I wouldn't be doing my job if I discussed breast cancer without addressing mammograms -- but this isn't because I want to remind you to get yours. On the contrary, I don't recommend mammograms, despite what you may hear from other medical sources. There are a few major reasons for this:
There is no solid evidence that mammograms save lives. In fact, research demonstrates that adding an annual mammogram to a careful physical examination of the breasts does not improve breast cancer survival rates over getting the examination alone. This is ESPECIALLY true for women under 50 with no breast cancer risk factors as even conventional experts advise this.
A mammogram uses ionizing radiation at a relatively high dose, which in and of itself can contribute to the development of breast cancer. Mammograms expose your body to radiation that can be 1,000 times greater than that from a chest x-ray, which we know poses a cancer risk. In fact, research in the journal Radiology, reported that annual mammography screening of 100,000 women from age 40-55, and biennial screening after that to age 74, would cause 86 radiation-induced cancers, including 11 fatalities and 136 life years lost.
Mammograms carry a first-time false positive rate of up to 6 percent. False positives can lead to expensive repeat screenings, exposing you to even more radiation, and may result in unnecessary invasive procedures including biopsies, unnecessary surgery, radiation, chemotherapy and devastating false diagnoses.
So why does the American Cancer Society advise women age 40 and older to have a screening mammogram every year, and continue to do so for as long as they are in good health, even despite updated guidelines set forth by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, which state that women in their 40s should NOT get routine mammograms for early detection of breast cancer?
ACS' role in the promotion of mammography is far from altruistic, as they have numerous ties to the mammography industry itself:
Five radiologists have served as presidents of ACS
ACS commonly promotes the interests of mammogram machine and film manufacturers, including Siemens, DuPont, General Electric, Eastman Kodak and Piker
The close ties help explain why ACS commonly runs advertisements urging women to get mammograms, even going so far in one ad as to promise that early detection leads to a cure "nearly 100 percent of the time." But mammograms do not prevent nor cure breast cancer any more than an x-ray of your arm prevents you from breaking it or helping a broken bone heal!
I do recommend breast cancer screening, however, just not mammography.
What Can you do to Prevent Breast Cancer?
Aside from skin cancer, breast cancer is the most common cancer among U.S. women, and one in eight will develop it during her lifetime. Cancer rates are climbing uncontrollably, and costs are quickly becoming unsustainable, a panel of 37 experts recently reported in The Lancet Oncology.
Unfortunately, while the American Cancer Society widely encourages women to get mammograms, they do not do nearly enough to spread the word about the many ways women can help prevent breast cancer in the first place.
Along with the tips already mentioned above regarding deodorant and bras, a healthy diet, regular physical exercise, and an effective way to manage your emotional health are the cornerstones of just about any cancer prevention program, including breast cancer.
The following lifestyle strategies will also help to further lower your risk:
Radically reduce your sugar/fructose intake. Normalizing your insulin levels by avoiding sugar and fructose is one of the most powerful physical actions you can take to lower your risk of cancer. Unfortunately, very few oncologists appreciate or apply this knowledge today. The Cancer Centers of America is one of the few exceptions, where strict dietary measures are included in their cancer treatment program. Fructose is especially dangerous, as research shows it actually speeds up cancer growth.
Optimize your vitamin D level. Ideally it should be over 50 ng/ml, but levels from 60-80 ng/ml will radically reduce your cancer risk. Safe sun exposure is the most effective way to increase your levels, followed by safe tanning beds and then oral vitamin D3 supplementation as a last resort if no other option is available.
Maintain a healthy body weight. This will come naturally when you begin eating right for your nutritional type and exercising using high-intensity burst-type activities like Peak Fitness. It’s important to lose excess weight because estrogen, a hormone produced in fat tissue, may trigger breast cancer.
Get plenty of high quality animal-based omega-3 fats, such as those from krill oil. Omega-3 deficiency is a common underlying factor for cancer.
Avoid drinking alcohol, or limit your drinks to one a day for women.
Breastfeed exclusively for up to six months. Research shows this will reduce your breast cancer risk.
Watch out for excessive iron levels. This is actually very common once women stop menstruating. The extra iron actually works as a powerful oxidant, increasing free radicals and raising your risk of cancer. So if you are a post-menopausal woman or have breast cancer you will certainly want to have your Ferritin level drawn. Ferritin is the iron transport protein and should not be above 80. If it is elevated you can simply donate your blood to reduce it.
November 27, 2009 by
I’m sure that most of you, like me, grew up eating boxed breakfast cereals.
Actually up until a year or so ago, I still was. While I had graduated from the frosted cereals and the ones with marshmallows, to the ‘whole grain’ or ‘healthy’ cereals, I still didn’t realize how how unhealthy they could be.
As I started to eat more whole foods, I started thinking about my cereals more and more. Especially the ones I was giving to my young son. It seemed so normal to feed him cheerios as breakfast and snacks. They’re touted as a great first finger food, and I was just doing what most mothers before me had done.
And I realize that food manufacturers have been putting more nutrition into the cereals, and in fact, a lot of them aren’t as bad as they used to be, at least where sugar is concerned. So why talk about it at all? Well, let me share an excerpt from the Weston A Price Foundation:
Dry breakfast cereals are produced by a process called extrusion. Cereal makers first create a slurry of the grains and then put them in a machine called an extruder. The grains are forced out of a little hole at high temperature and pressure. Depending on the shape of the hole, the grains are made into little o’s, flakes, animal shapes, or shreds (as in Shredded Wheat or Triscuits), or they are puffed (as in puffed rice). A blade slices off each little flake or shape, which is then carried past a nozzle and sprayed with a coating of oil and sugar to seal off the cereal from the ravages of milk and to give it crunch.
In his book Fighting the Food Giants, Paul Stitt tells us that the extrusion process used for these cereals destroys most of the nutrients in the grains. It destroys the fatty acids; it even destroys the chemical vitamins that are added at the end. The amino acids are rendered very toxic by this process. The amino acid lysine, a crucial nutrient, is especially denatured by extrusion. This is how all the boxed cereals are made, even the ones sold in the health food stores. They are all made in the same way and mostly in the same factories. All dry cereals that come in boxes are extruded cereals.
Let me also share just a couple unpublished studies with you. I first learned about these in the book Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon, and hard evidence is difficult to come by, so I think of these studies as more ‘stories’ since I can’t give you hard data. I would love to see this done again, especially with cereal as it’s made today (and not 50+ years ago!)
The first contained 4 sets of rats.
Another unpublished experiment was done at U of M in the 1960′s with 18 rats. They were split into 3 groups.
Now get this – all of the rats eating the corn flakes died before the rats eating the box. And supposedly their behavior changed dramatically to the point of going insane and then into convulsions. So does the cardboard box really have more nutrients in it, or is the cereal really that bad?
Besides the fact that boxed cereals have improperly prepared grains, or are made with refined grains (white flours), comes the fact that they have added refined sugar in them as well. On average, cereals that are most aggressively advertised to kids (think toys, cartoons, etc.) had 1/3 of their weight devoted to sugar. Another sad average is the fact that most Americans consume about 175 pounds of sugar each year when our total shouldn’t be much over 5 pounds. A study was even done in 2005 that showed on average 2-3 year old were consuming about 14 teaspoons of added sugar a days while 4 and 5 year old were consuming an extra 17 teaspoons.
Here’s even more statistics recently released from Consumer Reports:
So what are you to eat in the morning?
If it seems odd to not have cereal in the house, you’re not alone. I’m betting a very large percentage of homes have at least one box in their house right now. Not mine. I cut out cereal over a year ago and never even think of buying it anymore. Not only is it healthier to eat fresh, whole foods for breakfast, it’s cheaper! I used to go through a box a week by myself and if I fed my toddler the same and my hubby, we’d probably be more along the lines of 2-3 boxes. At full price that’s at least $8 – $12 a week on boxed cereal.
Instead of pouring a bowl each morning, you do need to think outside the box. It might take a few more minutes of prep, but once you get used to it, it’ll seem normal.
Donielle is an amateur herbalist and natural momma to two littles (with another babe in heaven) after dealing with being less than fertile. She has a passion for nourishing nutrition, natural living, and spreading the word on how food truly affects our health.
(I am not a doctor and don\'t pretend to be one. Use everything you read only to inspire you to do your own research and be an advocate for your own health.) Please read my disclaimer in full.
By Dr. Mercola
Now, as you know, I am not a big fan of using prescription drugs for just about any reason. I don't take them, nor do my parents who are 77 and 83. However, I realize that many reading this are in a transition phase or simply unwilling to get off of them at this time.
The information in this article can save you enormous amounts of money if you are throwing away your medications because you are following the inaccurately listed expirations dates on the prescription bottle.
Prescription drugs typically have an expiration date of one to five years, and if you're like most people, you would probably think twice before taking a medication past its expiration date. Medication turnover based on stated expiration dates also costs the medical industry, such as hospitals, pharmacies, and the US military, billions of dollars.
According to a new study,1 prescription drugs can actually remain sufficiently potent well past their expiration date, as long as it's unopened. (It's important to remember that drugs need to be stored properly, as humidity, temperature and exposure to light can affect the drug's shelf life.)
Prescription Drugs Still Viable Up to 40 Years Past Their Expiration Date, Study Finds
The researchers analyzed eight prescription drugs that expired between 28 and 40 years ago, and found that most were just as potent as when they were made.
The drugs included 14 active ingredients, including aspirin, codeine and hydrocodone, and in 86 percent of the cases, there was still at least 90 percent of the active ingredient left in the drug, which is within the limits allowed by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Any given batch of a drug may contain anywhere between 90-110 percent of the amount of the active ingredient stated on the label.
As reported by CNN Health:2
"It's impossible to say from the study results alone whether the eight drugs would be effective if used today, but 'there's no reason to think that they're not,' says Lee Cantrell, the lead author of the study... Two of the tested ingredients, aspirin and amphetamine, consistently fell below the 90 percent threshold, as did one sample of the painkiller phenacetin...
'All [the expiration date] means from the manufacturers' standpoint is that they're willing to guarantee the potency and efficacy for the drug for that long,' he says. 'It has nothing to do with the actual shelf life.'
The fact that expiration dates appear to be somewhat arbitrary may mean that consumers and pharmacies alike are throwing away perfectly good medicine. And this has important implications for drug shortages and especially health care costs, the researchers say.
'We're spending billions and billions on medications and medication turnover,' Cantrell says. 'If a drug has expired, you've got to throw it away, it goes into a landfill, and you have to get a new prescription. This could potentially have a significant impact on cost.'
Although consistently taking depleted prescription drugs could certainly cause complications, expired drugs are generally safe. In the medical literature there is only one example of an expired drug that became toxic, and that was an isolated incident, says Cantrell, the director of the San Diego division of the California Poison Control System."
This supports previous findings by the US military, which found that 90 percent of the drugs tested were potent far past their original expiration date, at least one drug was still good after 15 years. There are exceptions of course. Nitroglycerin, insulin and liquid antibiotics are three drugs that do NOT tend to keep well past their expiration date.
According to a report by The Wall Street Journal from 2000:
"...Francis Flaherty says he has concluded that expiration dates put on by manufacturers typically have no bearing on whether a drug is usable for longer. Mr. Flaherty notes that a drug maker is required to prove only that a drug is still good on whatever expiration date the company chooses to set. The expiration date doesn't mean, or even suggest, that the drug will stop being effective after that, nor that it will become harmful.
'Manufacturers put expiration dates on for marketing, rather than scientific, reasons,' says Mr. Flaherty, a pharmacist at the FDA until his retirement last year. 'It's not profitable for them to have products on a shelf for 10 years. They want turnover.'"
Cantrell again suggests expiration dating of drugs might need to be reevaluated, and it sounds like a good idea to me. The pharmaceutical industry can easily bilk extra money out of the medical system by stating a drug will expire after one year, when in fact it can safely last several years – perhaps several decades! Overall, it's a massive waste of money, but what's worse, unnecessary medication turnover also contributes to water contamination, which is becoming an increasingly troublesome concern.
You're Probably Drinking Someone Else's Drugs...
The federal government advises throwing most unused or expired medications into the trash rather than flushing them down the toilet, but water testing across the US shows that no matter how the drugs are disposed, they have a tendency to end up in water. For example, a 2008 Associated Press investigation found that the drinking water of at least 51 million Americans contained minute concentrations of a multitude of drugs:3
Philadelphia tested positive for 56 pharmaceuticals or byproducts in treated drinking water, including medicines for pain, infection, high cholesterol, asthma, epilepsy, mental illness and heart problems. The city's watersheds tested positive for 63 different medications or byproducts
Southern California drinking water had detectable levels of anti-epileptic and anti-anxiety medications
A metabolized angina medicine and the mood-stabilizing carbamazepine was found in drinking water in Northern New Jersey, and
San Francisco's drinking water was found to be laced with a sex hormone
Flushing expired medications down the toilet is not the only way these drugs enter the water supplies. When you take a drug, you also eliminate a fraction of it and/or its byproducts through your urine. Drugs have also been detected in the water at landfills, confirming suspicions that pharmaceuticals thrown into household trash still end up in our water supplies. Water that drains through landfills, known as leach rate, eventually ends up in rivers. And although not all states source drinking water from rivers, many do.
In addition to the chlorine, fluoride and disinfection byproducts (DBPs) this is yet another powerful reason to avoid drinking tap water unless it is filtered.
The federal government does not require water treatment plants to test for drugs, and there are no safety limits for drugs in water. Making matters worse, standard water treatment does NOT filter out drugs. It's also important to realize that bottled water is oftentimes nothing more than tap water, which may or may not have received additional treatment, and bottlers typically do not screen for pharmaceuticals in the water either. Many home filtration systems are similarly untested in terms of their ability to filter out drugs. According to a comprehensive survey of U.S. drinking water,4 10 of the most frequently detected toxic pharmaceuticals overall were:
Atenolol, a beta-blocker used to treat cardiovascular disease Meprobamate, a tranquilizer used in psychiatric treatment
Atrazine, an organic herbicide banned in the European Union which has been implicated in the decline of fish stocks and in changes in animal behavior
Naproxen, a painkiller and anti-inflammatory linked to increases in asthma incidence
Carbamazepine, a mood-stabilizing drug used to treat bipolar disorder
Phenytoin, an anticonvulsant used to treat epilepsy
Estrone, an estrogen hormone secreted by the ovaries and blamed for
causing gender changes in fish
Sulfamethoxazole, an antibiotic
Gemfibrozil, an anti-cholesterol drug TCEP, a reducing agent used in molecular biology
Water Quality Matters!
Contamination surveys such as those by the US Geological Survey (USGS)5, 6 can help us realize just how intimately connected we are with our environment, and how everything we do (and don't do) impacts that environment and boomerangs right back at us... We literally live in a sea of chemicals these days, and it is certainly not doing your health any good.
Trace amounts of more than 150 different human and veterinary medicines have been detected in environments.
According to the USGS, 80 percent of the streams in the US, along with nearly 25 percent of the nation's groundwater is contaminated with a variety of pharmaceuticals. The drug industry, while admitting that pharmaceuticals are clearly contaminating water supplies, maintains that the levels are too low to cause any harm. Yet, it's known that drugs in waterways can harm fish and other aquatic species, and laboratory studies show human cells do not grow normally when exposed to even trace amounts of certain drugs.
Other potential concerns include:
Some people are now exposed to traces of multiple drugs at one time, in addition to other harmful metals and chemicals in their water. Subsequently, people may be exposed to combinations of drugs that should not be combined
Many drugs in the water supply are known to have dangerous side effects when taken in normal prescription doses
Drugs that were only intended for external application will now be ingested and vice versa
Some individuals are allergic to drugs found in the water supply
Pregnant women are also being exposed to drugs that could potentially harm an unborn child
Besides the health risk to humans, drug-tainted water also has an ecological impact, contributing to mass bird die-offs and promoting antibiotic-resistant pathogens. A previous article in Environment3607 describes just how devastating pharmaceutical contamination of the environment can be:
"The popular anti-inflammatory and arthritis drug, diclofenac... is used in both human and veterinary medicine. In India, farmers started dosing their cows and oxen with the drug in the early 1990s to relieve inflammation that could impair the animals' ability to provide milk or pull plows. Soon, about 10 percent of India's livestock harbored some 300 micrograms of diclofenac in their livers.
When they died, their carcasses were sent to special dumps and picked clean by flocks of vultures. It was an efficient system, for unlike feral dogs and plague-infested rats, South Asia's abundant vulture population – estimated at more than 60 million in the early 1990s – carried no human pathogens and was resistant to livestock diseases such as anthrax. But vultures who fed on the treated carcasses accrued a dose of diclofenac of around 100 micrograms per kilogram. A person with arthritis would need 10 times that amount to feel an effect, but it was enough to devastate the vultures.
Between 2000 and 2007, the South Asian vulture population declined by 40 percent every year; today , 95 percent of India's Gyps vultures and 90 percent of Pakistan's are dead, due primarily to the diclofenac that scientists have found lurking in their tissues.
South Asian and British scientists who experimentally exposed captive vultures to diclofenac-dosed buffalo found that the birds went into renal failure – scientists still don't know why – and died within days of exposure. As the vulture population has declined, the feral dog population has boomed, and the Indian government's attempt to control the rabies they carry has started to flounder."
Safer Ways to Dispose of Unused Drugs
In response to what has become an obvious problem, some states have introduced "take-back" programs, which are, not surprisingly, being opposed by the drug industries. You can learn more about local efforts on takebacknetwork.com.8 To give you an idea of just how many drugs are discarded, the fourth DEA-led National Prescription Drug Take-Back initiative9, 10 held this past summer collected a staggering 276 tons of unwanted or expired medications! The four annual events have, in total, collected over 774 tons of drugs, which might otherwise have been flushed down the toilet or discarded into landfills, or been otherwise misused.
The FDA released new guidelines last year for "safely" disposing of drugs:11
Follow any specific disposal instructions on the drug label or patient information that accompanies the medication. Do not flush prescription drugs down the toilet unless this information specifically instructs you to do so. [I would recommend never flushing ANY drug down the toilet, to protect your community's water quality]
Take advantage of community drug take-back programs that allow the public to bring unused drugs to a central location for proper disposal. Call your city or county government's household trash and recycling service (see blue pages in phone book) to see if a take-back program is available in your community. The Drug Enforcement Administration, working with state and local law enforcement agencies, is sponsoring National Prescription Drug Take Back Days throughout the United States.
If no instructions are given on the drug label and no take-back program is available in your area, throw the drugs in the household trash, but first:
Take them out of their original containers and mix them with an undesirable substance, such as used coffee grounds or kitty litter. The medication will be less appealing to children and pets, and unrecognizable to people who may intentionally go through your trash.
Put them in a sealable bag, empty can, or other container to prevent the medication from leaking or breaking out of a garbage bag.
Remove and destroy any prescription labels before throwing away the containers.
In some states, pharmacies can take back medications. When in doubt, you should ask your pharmacist for advice. Most are very well trained and educated professionals who will be glad to assist you in this area
Of course, some of these suggestions merely move the environmental peril from one place to another – such as diluting medicines in water and mixing them in garbage that eventually ends up in a landfill near you anyway. The best way to reduce environmental drug pollution is also the simplest and most obvious – Take Control of Your Health by cutting down the number of drugs you take in the first place.
Of course, to curb the pollution problem drug use will also have to be greatly reduced among livestock and other animals in our food supply, so do your part by supporting organic agriculture, in which animals are not permitted to be treated with antibiotics and other drugs.
Also remember when you are drinking tap water you are consuming drugs that your community has been using in addition to chlorine and fluoride and disinfection by products. This is a very powerful reason to avoid drinking tap water unless it is filtered.
By Dr. Mercola
More than 3,000 food additives -- preservatives, flavorings, colors and other ingredients -- are added to foods in the United States.
While each of these substances are legal to use in the US, whether or not they are safe for long-term consumption -- by themselves or in combination -- is a different story altogether. Many have been deemed too harmful to use in other countries.
When you consider that about 90 percent of the money Americans spend on food goes toward processed foods loaded with these additives, it’s no wonder most people are carrying a hefty toxic load that can wreak havoc on their health.
A list of ingredients that are banned across the globe but still allowed for use in America recently made the news. The list is featured in the new book, Rich Food, Poor Food, authored by nutritionist Mira Calton and her husband Jayson.
The banned ingredients include various food dyes, the fat substitute Olestra, brominated vegetable oil, potassium bromate (aka brominanted flour), Azodicarbonamide, BHA, BHT, rBGH, rBST, and arsenic.
Seeing that the overall health of Americans is so much lower than other industrialized countries, you can’t help but wonder whether toxic ingredients such as these might play a role in our unhealthy conditions.
Meanwhile, Russia has announced that it plans to extend a ban on U.S. beef, pork and turkey imports coming into effect this month, due to the feed additive ractopamine in the meats. Ractopamine is a growth stimulant banned in several countries, including Russia.
Processed Foods Depend on Additives
When foods are processed, not only are valuable nutrients lost and fibers removed, but the textures and natural variation and flavors are also lost. After processing, what's left behind is a bland, uninteresting "pseudo-food" that most people wouldn’t want to eat.
So at this point, food manufacturers must add back in the nutrients, flavor, color and texture to processed foods in order to make them palatable, and this is why they become loaded with food additives.
Most commonly, additives are included to slow spoilage, prevent fats and oils from going rancid, prevent fruits from turning brown, fortify or enrich the food with synthetic vitamins and minerals to replace the natural ones that were lost during processing, and improve taste, texture and appearance. When reading product packages, here are some of the most common food additives1 to watch out for:
Preservatives: sodium benzoate, sodium nitrite, potassium sorbate, BHA, BHT, TBHQ
Sweeteners and artificial sweeteners: fructose, high fructose corn syrup, aspartame, sucralose, acesulfame potassium (acesulfame-K)
Artificial colors: FD&C Blue Nos. 1 and 2, FD&C Green No. 3, FD&C Red Nos. 3 and 40, FD&C Yellow Nos. 5 and 6, Orange B, Citrus Red No. 2
Flavor enhancers: monosodium glutamate (MSG), hydrolyzed soy protein, autolyzed yeast extract
What’s With the Double-Standards?
The food industry has already formulated safer, better products for other countries, in which these and other harmful ingredients are banned. So why do they insist on selling inferior versions in America? For clear examples, take a look at a recent article on 100DaysOfRealFood.com.3 In it, Vani Hari shows the ingredient labels of several common foods sold in the US and the UK, such as Betty Crocker’s Red Velvet cake mix, McDonald’s French fries, and Pizza Hut’s garlic cheese bread. Amazingly, while these foods can be created using a bare minimum of additives in the UK (and sometimes none), in the US, they’re absolutely LOADED with chemicals.
“The food industry does not want us to pay attention to the ingredients nor do they care about the negative effects from eating them. They certainly don’t care about the astronomical medical bills that are a direct result of us eating the inferior food they are creating,” Vani Hari writes.
“...We as a collective nation must stop this trajectory of sickness and rising health care costs, by understanding the ingredients we are putting into our bodies. We must challenge the U.S. food industry to discontinue the use of banned ingredients that are not allowed elsewhere in the world. We deserve to have the same quality food without potential toxins.”
Russia Issues Long-Term Ban on US Meat
In related “questionable food” news, Russia recently banned US meat supplies after discovering it contains ractopamine—a beta agonist drug that increases protein synthesis, thereby making the animal more muscular. This reduces the fat content of the meat. As reported by Pravda,4 Russia is the fourth largest importer of US meats, purchasing about $500 million-worth of beef and pork annually.
Effective February 11, Russia will no longer allow US meat imports, stating the ban “is likely to last for a long time.”5 All meat suppliers wishing to sell their meat and meat products to Russia must certify their meat as ractopamine-free—a condition the US has so far refused to comply with.
The drug is banned for use in 160 countries, including China and Russia, but allowed in 24 countries, including Canada and the United States. While the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) considers ractopamine safe and doesn’t test for it, Russia’s chief health inspector, Gennady Onishchenko, claims there are “serious questions” about the safety of the drug. He previously told the New York Times:6
“For instance, use of ractopamine is accompanied by a reduction in body mass, suppression of reproductive function, increase of mastitis in dairy herds, which leads to a steep decline in the quality and safety of milk.”
Ractopamine is also known to affect the human cardiovascular system, and may cause food poisoning, according to Pravda.7 It’s also thought to be responsible for hyperactivity, muscle breakdown, and can increase death and disability in livestock. While other drugs require a clearance period of around two weeks to help ensure the compounds are flushed from the meat prior to slaughter (and therefore reduce residues leftover for human consumption), there is no clearance period for ractopamine.
In fact, livestock growers intentionally use the drug in the last days before slaughter in order to increase its effectiveness. According to veterinarian Michael W. Fox, as much as 20 percent of ractopamine remains in the meat you buy from the supermarket. Despite potential health risks, the drug is used in 45 percent of US pigs, 30 percent of ration-fed cattle, and an unknown percentage of turkeys.
What’s the Simplest Way to Avoid Harmful Food Additives?
Ditch processed foods entirely. (If you live in Europe you may have more options than Americans, as you may be able to find some processed foods that do not contain any synthetic additives.) About 90 percent of the money Americans spend on food is spent on processed foods, so there is massive room for improvement in this area for most people.
Swapping your processed food diet for one that focuses on fresh whole foods may seem like a radical idea, but it's a necessity if you value your health. And when you put the history of food into perspective, it's actually the processed foods that are "radical" and "new." People have thrived on vegetables, meats, eggs, fruits and other whole foods for centuries, while processed foods were only recently invented.
If you want to eat healthy, I suggest you follow the 1950s (and before) model and spend quality time in the kitchen preparing high-quality meals for yourself and your family. If you rely on processed inexpensive foods, you exchange convenience for long-term health problems and mounting medical bills. For a step-by-step guide to make this a reality in your own life, simply follow the advice in my optimized nutrition plan along with these seven steps to wean yourself off processed foods.
When it comes to staying healthy, avoiding processed foods and replacing them with fresh, whole foods is the "secret" you've been looking for. Additionally, the more steps your food goes through before it reaches your plate, the greater your chances of contamination becomes. If you are able to get your food locally, you eliminate numerous routes that could expose your food to contamination with disease-causing pathogens.
Friday, March 15, 2013 by: PF Louis
(NaturalNews) Apple cider vinegar (ACV) is gaining popularity as a beneficial contributor to good health that could and should be used daily. However, distilled ACV won't do anything for your health. There are a few good brands available. Bragg's is the most well known brand, but there are others.
Here's what to look for on ACV labels: Organic, raw or unpasteurized, unfiltered, and containing the "mother." The mother in ACV is noticeable as a cloudiness or cobweb appearance throughout the liquid and usually with sediment collected at the bottom of the bottle.
The mother is a visible collection of nutrients, enzymes, and beneficial bacteria resulting from the dual fermentation process that is not spoiled by pasteurization. Pasteurized foods are dead foods. Raw, organic ACV is a live food with many benefits. Don't settle for any other type of ACV.
You may want to use raw, organic ACV on salads. But if you prefer the flavors of other vinegars for garnishing, adding approximately one tablespoon full of raw, organic ACV mixed into a half-cup of pure water is recommended by many as a tonic before meals to enhance digestion.
Since some of the mother lies at the bottom of the bottle, it's wise to shake the bottle well before pouring. That same tonic can be used at other times for other health conditions or maladies
Seven reasons to use organic raw ACV
(1) A September 2007 Japanese study abstract "Generation of antitumor active neutral medium-sized alpha-glycan in apple vinegar fermentation" reported anti-tumor activity in mice. Here's an excerpt from that study:
We studied the biological functions of apple vinegar produced from crushed apples, and found that the constituent neutral medium-sized alpha-glycan (NMalphaG) acts as an antitumor agent against experimental mouse tumors.
(2) Organic, raw ACV can help prevent or eliminate bladder and urinary tract infections.
(3) ACV helps break down fats so they can be used for energy instead of being stored as either unsightly subcutaneous or dangerously unhealthy visceral fat. Some weight loss diets incorporate ACV.
(4) Due to its acetic acid content, ACV helps reduce glucose level spikes with high glycemic starchy foods. It's been shown to improve stability among among those predisposed to Type II diabetes with insulin resistance or sensitivity.
An Arizona State University study "Vinegar Improves Insulin Sensitivity to a High-Carbohydrate Meal in Subjects With Insulin Resistance or Type II diabetes" was published in the January 2004 issue of Diabetes Care.
The researchers concluded: "Further investigations to examine the efficacy of vinegar as an antidiabetic therapy are warranted."
(5) A double strength dose of the ACV tonic described above is suitable for replacing toxic heartburn medications after meals.
(6) Raw, organic ACV helps maintain an alkaline pH. Similar to lemons and limes that are considered acidic, ACV works the pH buffer system into a more alkaline pH.
You can make a sipping drink with ACV for alkalizing. Mix a pint of pure water with two tablespoons of organic, raw ACV and some local raw honey. Sip throughout the day, but don't forget to shake it up before each small drink to keep the mother awake.
(7) The malic acid in ACV has anti-fungal and anti-microbial properties. So that mealtime tonic will can prevent food poisoning or parasite invasion. Protect yourself with organic, raw ACV with you when you eat in third world or developing countries.
Besides enzymes and malic and acetic acids, ACV contains significant amounts of pectin, potassium, calcium, and ash, which gives ACV its alkalizing properties.
Organic, raw apple cider vinegar is sold in all health food stores. It's a little pricier than distilled vinegars, but very worthwhile to have and use often.
You may find more reasons than the seven listed here in the sources below.
Sources for this article include:
Friday, March 15, 2013 by: Mike Bundrant
(NaturalNews) New scientific evidence of the Golden Rule goes beyond the usual assumptions and suggests that if you treat others with disdain, you not only suffer, but activate the same neurology as physical pain.
Richard Ryan, co-author of a new University of Rochester study says, "This study shows that when people bend to pressure to exclude others, they also pay a steep personal cost. Their distress is different from the person excluded, but no less intense."
"Although there are no visible scars, ostracism has been shown to activate the same neural pathways as physical pain," says Ryan. But complying with instructions to exclude others was equally disheartening, the data shows, albeit for different reasons.
Something in our makeup intuitively understands our connectedness and suffers when others suffer
Spiritual sages over time have been clear about this. Modern science validates it. Case closed. Maximize your happiness by treating others how you'd like to be treated.
Why doesn't this simple truth translate into world peace? For that matter, I often wonder why it doesn't translate into greater peace within the walls of my own home. Somehow, the Golden Rule is not making its way, nearly enough, into practical life.
I can think of two reasons why. They both have to do with research that explains why we are so willing to inflict pain.
Yale University research demonstrates people are disturbingly willing to inflict pain on others
Yale University psychologist Stanley Milgram demonstrated that people are disturbingly willing to inflict pain on others when instructed by an authority figure. In his classic research conducted in the wake of Nazi war crime trials, 65% of participants were willing to deliver 450 volts of electric shock to innocent victims who were obviously screaming in pain and objecting to the whole experiment. The participants were told that the shock there were delivering was beyond dangerous, but "ominous."
Why were people willing to inflict such torture? Because they were instructed to do so by the researcher. They were told, "It is absolutely essential that you continue. You must go on."
Before the study, researchers predicted that only 3% of participants would be willing to go all the way and really fry people. Not so; 65% were willing, even though they clearly showed signs of concern and needed to double check that it was "ok" to keep up the torture.
This study is not without controversy, as most people are not comfortable with the idea that people are so willing to hurt each other, but the results stand. When those in power give orders, people tend to follow. If the power structure is destructive, most people still obey.
Psychic masochism: the hard-to-believe, unconscious motivation to chuck the Golden Rule
We still haven't dealt with the fact that if breaking the Golden Rule causes the perpetrator pain, why would anyone ignore it just to obey an authority figure? Further, how is it that individuals in the power structure are so willing to destroy, especially when they would be happier if they respected their fellow human beings? In short, why isn't the Golden Rule the ultimate authority?
At this point it is obvious that something is distorted. The Golden Rule makes us happy. Breaking it causes everyone pain. Ignoring it consistently causes mass contention, war, death and a host of ills for our planet, way of life and the sustainability of our existence. We ignore the Golden Rule anyway. You must see the masochism - not sexual deviance - but readiness to inflict harm upon ourselves.
The answer lies in the work of the Edmund Bergler, psychiatry's lost hero. Dr. Bergler should be a household name, yet his vast work - 25 books and 273 papers published in major medical journals - has been deleted from modern mental health.
Why? This is a story waiting to be told. If Dr. Bergler's work had not been suppressed, mental health would be very different today. Psychiatry would not focus on medicating us, but on our multi-level blindness to why we inflict pain upon ourselves.
Dr. Bergler's basic premise is this: long ago, you learned to take unconscious satisfaction in pain, misery and all manner of emotional angst. He called it psychic masochism - the basic human neurosis. It's been referred to over the years as the "pleasure in displeasure" pattern.
Overwhelmed with infantile fury over the deprivation that all babies must endure (compared to the womb) even when your parents were conscientious, you developed a tolerance for suffering. Rather than suffer in agony, you made the suffering pleasurable. And, you became attached to it. You are still willing to experience suffering; even seek it out. If this were not the case, you wouldn't suffer 90% of the emotional angst you suffer - it is self-inflicted, albeit unconsciously.
According to Bergler, this is simply how we have evolved and are far from beyond it. The pleasure-in-displeasure pattern is universal. If you think people are not attached to suffering, just look around. Many don't know who they would be without their fear, guilt, shame, humiliation, anxiety, rejection or other brand of emotional pain. For many, some form of emotional angst is actually their baseline state of being. How is this not an attachment to suffering?
A Berglerian would say, then, that we are willing to ignore the Golden Rule to our own detriment because we find unconscious pleasure in emotional pain. We seek it out like a old, comfortable shoe.
Bergler stated that psychic masochism, the willingness to hurt ourselves emotionally and take strange satisfaction in it, is an indestructible force unless we consciously intervene. This is why self-sabotage is so commonplace. This is also why good psychotherapy works.
Of course, our massive psychological defenses keep us blind to all of the above. We have a hard enough time admitting common anger is our own responsibility and not caused by someone else. Admitting that we actually enjoy the wreckage is unimaginable.
About the author:
Watch the free video The AHA! Process: An End to Self-Sabotage and discover the lost keys to personal transformation and emotional well-being that have been suppressed by mainstream mental health for decades.
Friday, April 12, 2013 by: Jonathan Benson, staff writer
(NaturalNews) As you may recall, the Associated Press (AP) released the results of a groundbreaking investigation it conducted back in 2008 concerning the presence of pharmaceutical drugs in the water supply. In this report, it was revealed that at least 41 million Americans are exposed daily to tap water containing trace amounts of antibiotics, sleeping pills, and even sex hormones. Now, a new report by TheFix.com brings to light the presence of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs, in the water supply, and the genetic havoc they may potentially be wreaking on human health.
If you are an avid NaturalNews reader, you have probably already seen some of our many reports on the dangers of SSRIs. Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, under his pseudonym Amethios, actually released a music video back in 2012 entitled "S.S.R.Lies" that tackles the issue of SSRIs, and how these potent drugs can severely alter mood and even induce suicidal or homicidal tendencies in those that take them. You can view the music video in the link below this article.
But it now appears that many Americans do not even have a choice whether or not to willingly take SSRIs anymore, as the toxic chemicals are being quietly piped through water taps unseen. Though they are in far lower doses than what comes from the pharmacy, and in heavier dilution, these trace amounts of SSRIs can add up, especially when consumed perpetually over long periods of time. And since they are also accompanied by many other types of pharmaceutical drugs, their effects on the environment and humans are largely unknown.
"There's a good chance that if you live in an urban area, your tap water is laced with tiny amounts of antidepressants (mostly SSRIs like Prozac and Effexor), benzodiazepines (like Klonopin, used to reduce symptoms of substance withdrawal) and anti-convulsants (like Topomax, used to treat addiction to alcohol, nicotine, food and even cocaine and crystal meth)," writes Matt Harvey. "Whether or not this psychoactive waste has any effect on the human nervous system remains unclear, but when such pharmaceuticals are introduced into the ecosystem, the fallout for other species is demonstrable -- and potentially dire."
Exposure to SSRIs found to damage DNA, induce neurological damage
A 1999 paper published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives revealed that a steady stream of pharmaceuticals continuously makes its way back into water supplies due to inadequate filtration techniques. Pharmaceutical substances are often smaller than the filtration devices used at municipal water treatment plants to carry out solid waste, which means unknown levels of such substances make it right back into your water glass if you drink tap water.
Beyond this, Harvey cites the fact that studies have linked SSRI exposure to genetic defects and other health problems. Minnows subjected to tap water spiked with a combination of SSRIs and anti-convulsants at the University of Idaho, for instance, exhibited 324 genetic alterations associated with neurological disorders like autism -- and these small fish were only exposed to the tainted water for a mere 18 days!
"Studies have shown that regular doses of SSRIs can sometimes damage human DNA, most notably in sperm," adds Harvey. "The minnows offer evidence that even trace amounts of SSRIs can infiltrate DNA."
So what can we all do to avoid this unwelcome pharmaceutical exposure? The first thing would be to install a whole-house water filtration system capable of capturing and removing drug particulates, especially if you live in an area served by a municipal water source. You can also contact your local water treatment facility and request information about its filtration methods, and whether or not they capture drug traces.
Sources for this article include:
Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/039894_anti-depressants_tap_water_SSRIs.html#ixzz2QGyTM1VG
The statement "everything causes cancer" has become a popular hyperbole, and one that some people use as rhetorical fodder to excuse their own dietary and lifestyle failures, particularly as they pertain to cancer risk. But the truth of the matter is that many common food items have, indeed, been scientifically shown to increase cancer risk, and some of them substantially. Here are 10 of the most unhealthy, cancer-causing foods that you should never eat again:
1) Genetically-modified organisms (GMOs).
It goes without saying that GMOs have no legitimate place in any cancer-free diet, especially now that both GMOs and the chemicals used to grow them have been shown to cause rapid tumor growth. But GMOs are everywhere, including in most food derivatives made from conventional corn, soybeans, and canola. However, you can avoid them by sticking with certified organic, certified non-GMO verified, and locally-grown foods that are produced naturally without biotechnology.
2) Processed meats.
Most processed meat products, including lunch meats, bacon, sausage, and hot dogs, contain chemical preservatives that make them appear fresh and appealing, but that can also cause cancer. Both sodium nitrite and sodium nitrate have been linked to significantly increasing the risk of colon and other forms of cancer, so be sure to choose only uncured meat products made without nitrates, and preferably from grass-fed sources (http://www.organicconsumers.org/foodsafety/processedmeat050305.cfm).
3) Microwave popcorn.
They might be convenient, but those bags of microwave popcorn are lined with chemicals that are linked to causing not only infertility but also liver, testicular, and pancreatic cancers. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recognizes the perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) in microwave popcorn bag linings as "likely" carcinogenic, and several independent studies have linked the chemical to causing tumors. Similarly, the diacetyl chemical used in the popcorn itself is linked to causing both lung damage and cancer (http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/QAA400701/Microwave-Popcorn-Threat.html).
4) Soda pop.
Like processed meats, soda pop has been shown to cause cancer as well. Loaded with sugar, food chemicals, and colorings, soda pop acidifies the body and literally feeds cancer cells. Common soda pop chemicals like caramel color and its derivative 4-methylimidazole (4-MI) have also specifically been linked to causing cancer (http://www.naturalnews.com/031383_caramel_coloring_cola.html).
5) 'Diet' foods, beverages.
Even worse than conventional sugar-sweetened soda pop, though, is "diet" soda pop and various other diet beverages and foods. A recent scientific review issued by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) of more than 20 separate research studies found that aspartame, one of the most common artificial sweeteners, causes a range of illnesses including birth defects and cancer. Sucralose (Splenda), saccharin and various other artificial sweeteners have also been linked to causing cancer (http://www.dailymail.co.uk).
6) Refined 'white' flours. Refined flour is a common ingredient in processed foods, but its excess carbohydrate content is a serious cause for concern. A study published in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Mile Markers, and Prevention found that regular consumption of refined carbohydrates was linked to a 220 percent increase in breast cancer among women. High-glycemic foods in general have also been shown to rapidly raise blood sugar levels in the body, which directly feeds cancer cell growth and spread (http://www.naturalnews.com/001812_cancer_prevention.html).
6) Refined 'white' flours.
Refined flour is a common ingredient in processed foods, but its excess carbohydrate content is a serious cause for concern. A study published in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Mile Markers, and Prevention found that regular consumption of refined carbohydrates was linked to a 220 percent increase in breast cancer among women. High-glycemic foods in general have also been shown to rapidly raise blood sugar levels in the body, which directly feeds cancer cell growth and spread (http://www.naturalnews.com/001812_cancer_prevention.html).
7) Refined sugars.
The same goes for refined sugars, which tend to rapidly spike insulin levels and feed the growth of cancer cells. Fructose-rich sweeteners like high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) are particularly offensive, as cancer cells have been shown to quickly and easily metabolize them in order to proliferate. And since cookies, cakes, pies, sodas, juices, sauces, cereals, and many other popular, mostly processed, food items are loaded with HFCS and other refined sugars, this helps explain why cancer rates are on the rise these days (http://www.naturalnews.com/038071_cancer_sugar_sweets.html).
8) Conventional apples, grapes, and other 'dirty' fruits.
Many people think they are eating healthy when they buy apples, grapes, or strawberries from the store. But unless these fruits are organic or verified to be pesticide-free, they could be a major cancer risk. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) found that up to 98 percent of all conventional produce, and particularly the type found on its "dirty" fruits list, is contaminated with cancer-causing pesticides (http://www.ewg.org/foodnews/list/).
9) Farmed salmon.
Farmed salmon is another high-risk cancer food, according to Dr. David Carpenter, Director of the Institute for Health and the Environment at the University of Albany. According to his assessment, farmed salmon not only lacks vitamin D, but it is often contaminated with carcinogenic chemicals, PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls), flame retardants, pesticides, and antibiotics (http://www.albany.edu/ihe/salmonstudy/pressrelease.html).
10) Hydrogenated oils.
They are commonly used to preserve processed foods and keep them shelf-stable. But hydrogenated oils alter the structure and flexibility of cell membranes throughout the body, which can lead to a host of debilitating diseases such as cancer. Some manufacturers are phasing out the use of hydrogenated oils and replacing them with palm oil and other safer alternatives, but trans fats are still widely used in processed foods (http://www.naturalnews.com/010095_hydrogenated_oils_unhealthy.html).
Sources for this article include: