Today, saying that soda is bad for kids is a relatively acceptable statement. Most people, in general, understand that soda drinks simply aren’t good for us. Soda producers know this as well seeing they’ve reacted creating “diet” versions of their core products which typically end up as worse, more dangerous, versions of their original counterparts. Coca-Cola is notorious for their advertisement campaigns that paint a completely opposite story, typically a world uniting narrative featuring the thin and healthy.
Unfortunately, soda is making everyone fat. And now Coca-Cola, in desperation, is trying to change the persona of their prized sodas.
A new write up by investigative journalist, Paul Thacker, alleges that Coca-Cola paid off journalist in order to influence them. Essentially, Coca-Cola was hoping to downplay the sugar and obesity connection. The documents were obtained under Freedom of Information laws. Thacker even claims Coca-Cola paid off journalism conferences. 4
Industry money was used to covertly influence journalists with the message that exercise is a bigger problem than sugar consumption in the obesity epidemic, documents obtained under freedom of information laws show. The documents detail how Coca-Cola funded journalism conferences at a US university in an attempt to create favourable press coverage of sugar sweetened drinks. When challenged about funding of the series of conferences, the academics involved weren’t forthcoming about industry involvement.
Thacker goes on to note that products such as Coca-Cola notoriously relate their sugar-laden drinks to a sport so that they can make it seem that it is OK to drink their sodas so long as people exercise.
As Yoni Freedhoff, assistant professor of medicine at the University of Ottawa, told The BMJ, “For Coca-Cola the ‘energy balance’ message has been a crucial one to cultivate, as its underlying inference is that, even for soda drinkers, obesity is more a consequence of inactivity than it is of regularly drinking liquid candy.”
Making the connection to paid off journalist following through with their good press coverage…
The six figure bill for funding these journalism conferences was more than repaid in favourable press coverage, say critics. Documented evidence of the industry’s covert influence on the media is rare. In 2004, researchers examined secret documents made public during tobacco litigation. Attempting to derail the effect of the US Environmental Protection Agency’s 1993 report on secondhand smoke, the tobacco industry successfully placed stories in major print publications about the report’s “scientific weakness” to help “build considerable reasonable doubt . . . particularly among consumers,” the researchers wrote.1 They concluded that even journalists can fall victim to well orchestrated public relations efforts, regardless of the quality of the science used in these PR exercises.
The article goes on to cite a number of examples. Coca-Cola “donated $1m to the University of Colorado, home institution of the Global Energy Balance Network’s president, James Hill, a professor of pediatrics.” Another baffling example was CNN. “A CNN reporter attended the 2014 journalism conference and later contributed to a story that argued that obesity’s cause could be a lack of exercise, not the consumption of sugary soft drinks.”
“Critics told The BMJ that Coca-Cola’s $37,000 support for that particular conference and the resulting story was a better bargain than an advertisement placed on CNN’s website.”
Some months after the event, Hill emailed a Coca-Cola executive and described the conference as a “home run,” adding, “The journalists told us this was an amazing event and they generated a lot of stories.” Hill continued, “You basically supported the meeting this year . . . I think we can get many more sponsors involved next year.”
Journalist Kristin Jones called the entire scam out, but was told it was no big deal. The Foundations President, Bob Meyers, essentially fired off Jones’ complaints to professors at the University of Colorado.
“The funding for this came from our general educational grant resources.” Months later, Peters emailed Coca-Cola executives a report on the 2014 journalism conference, thanking them for the “educational grant that supported this work.”
“I feel like I was lied to,” Jones told The BMJ. Jones no longer works as a journalist but said that she would not have attended the conference had she known of Coca-Cola’s funding.
I think it is fairly obvious to most of our readers that the western diet has ruined our communal health. Fast food, sodas, deserts and sedentary lifestyles have led us down a path that has increased obesity and degenerative disease. The FDA is a highly lobbied government organization that might be considered a wing of the big food industry, so we can’t depend on them to put our best interest forth.
However, we can look into anecdotal evidence to help us better understand what dietary changes we might need to make in order to improve our health.
The world’s healthiest population has been found in a forest in Bolivia. A tribe called Tsimane show hardly any indications of clogged up arteries even into very old age. A BBC.com has profiled them. What’s incredible is that these people lack pharmaceutical influences (more on that below).
“It’s an incredible population” with radically different diets and ways of living, said the researchers.
Tsimane is pronounced, “chee-may-nay”. And there are around 16,000 of them living today.
Here is what researchers have found they consume:
17% is from wild pig, capybara, tapir. 7% catfish and piranha. And the rest is starches such as sweet potatoes and rice. Yes, these people eat carbs. Lots of carbs, in fact. They also consume a lot of nuts.
Michael Gurven, a professor of anthropology at University of California, Santa Barbara, told the BBC: “It is much lower than in every other population where data exists.
“The closest were Japanese women, but it’s still a different ballpark altogether.”
So what else can we decipher from these people? They don’t have pharma. What’s most absurd in all of this is that we have modern medicine. People don’t die from broken legs anymore if you live in New Jersey. So why then is our general health so poor? If pharmaceuticals and vaccines are supposed to be saving us, why are we so morbidly unfit in comparison to tribes which have access to very little modern medicine? It isn’t as if these tribal people take antidepressants or vaccinate. Yet their health numbers are much better than ours.
Is the pharmaceutical industry battling our modern lifestyles, or are they playing into the hands of it as a way to profit? If we can solve depression through diet, why isn’t that being pushed over antidepressants? The same article about the Tsimane reports that they are very happy. I can’t imagine having to hunt for food and rely on rain for drinking water is without stress.
There is no doubt that modern medicine has improved things such as child birth and injuries. But what it hasn’t done is improve degenerative disease. What about cancer? Heart attacks? The simplicity in the solve is obvious when you look at these people living in a forest in Bolivia. They just aren’t exposing themselves to big food and big pharma agendas.
The pharmaceutical industry isn’t responsible for our lack of exercise. But they market and appeal to our chinks in our human armor. And they poison us with this drug so that we have to take that drug; and the cycle continues.
The solutions are easy and simple: Stop poisoning your body when you don’t have to. Eat better. Meditate and do yoga rather than take antidepressants. Eat nuts over candy bars and forget the weight watchers.
Spinach is one of the most well-known superfoods in the world. The leafy green vegetable is a staple of a healthy diet for many. Well now it seems, spinach is even more powerful than we thought. Scientists have now figured out a way to use spinach to build a human heart.
A study, published this month by the journal Biomaterials, shows us that spinach can be used to build a vascular system. Essentially, tissue engineering has long been the obstacle when it comes to building an organ such as a human heart. Now it seems spinach has helped to clear that obstacle. And that could be huge for medical science.
“The main limiting factor for tissue engineering … is the lack of a vascular network,” says study co-author Joshua Gershlak, a graduate student at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) in Massachusetts, in a video (below) describing the study. “Without that vascular network, you get a lot of tissue death.”
“Cellulose is biocompatible [and] has been used in a wide variety of regenerative medicine applications, such as cartilage tissue engineering, bone tissue engineering, and wound healing,” the authors write in their paper.
Eventually, people who have had heart attacks may well be able to get their tissues replaced using this science. Following heart attacks, tissues are usually damaged and this creates problems for returning the person to health.
“We have a lot more work to do, but so far this is very promising,” study co-author Glenn Gaudette, also of WPI, says in a press statement. “Adapting abundant plants that farmers have been cultivating for thousands of years for use in tissue engineering could solve a host of problems limiting the field.”
If you have children, one of the first memories you likely have of your baby is the nurses taking the infant away to “wash” or “bathe” them. Washing children immediately after they’ve entered the world is almost a hospital tradition at this point. And for many parents, the visual of a baby with a waxy, frothy coating, justifies the act.
Our new beautiful baby is, well, dirty. Right?
“It’s important to remember that babies aren’t born dirty,” explains Dr. Ira Jaffe to Woman’s Day, a board certified maternal fetal medicine OBGYN doctor in NYC. “The way they’re designed to come out is how they should come out.”
What’s covering our babies isn’t a filthy slime, rather, a substance called vernix caseosa and its a healthy idea to leave it on for a day.
A 2004 study by ACOG’s Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology shows that vernix caseosa is really just another layer of protective skin. It’s largely a part of the baby’s new and evolving immune system. It guards against bacteria and fungus. Pneumonia and meningitis are two illnesses that the coating protects against. We go to great lengths to vaccinate babies, but for decades we’ve been stripping them of their greatest natural immune component.
In the absence of chorioamnionitis, vernix and amniotic fluid contain an organized pool of antimicrobial peptides with a defined spectrum of bioactivity against common bacterial and fungal pathogens.
Women who give birth are exhausted, stressed and ripe to be influenced by hospital mantra. But now people are advocating for changes in hospital procedures as a way to clean up the process (pun intended).
“Nothing is better for a baby than laying against a mother’s skin,” said Dr. Jaffe.
All too often, this isn’t the case; instead, the baby is whisked away for baths and immediate umbilical cord cuttings and Vitamin K shots. The mothers are often reduced to laying alone in recovery beds while fathers watch their baby get a shot and a bath through a small window frame. A mother’s chest contributes to keeping her baby’s body temperature a healthy warm. Mom’s chest can even cool the baby down when needed. In other words, the mother is the baby’s temperature regulator immediately following birth.
The Department of Health has even changed its tune over the matter.
The Department of Health in conjunction with the World Health Association has set-forth a protocol for newborns, and in the section regarding thorough immediate drying of thebaby (0-3 minutes after birth), it says “Do not wipe off vernix,” and “Do not bathe the newborn.”
But yet, hospitals around the country continue to act without logic and reason.
SACRAMENTO – Glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup® and many other weed killers, is being added to California’s Proposition 65 list of chemicals known to cause cancer, the California Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) announced today.
The effective date of the listing will depend on the outcome of a request for a stay in the Fresno County Superior Court case Monsanto v OEHHA. The lawsuit challenged OEHHA’s ability to list the chemical. The trial court ruled in OEHHA’s favor, but Monsanto is appealing the decision and asking the Court of Appeal to issue a stay that would block the listing while the appeal is pending. OEHHA is opposing Monsanto’s request.
Proposition 65 is a right-to-know law that California voters approved in 1986. It requires the state to maintain a list of chemicals known to cause cancer, birth defects or other reproductive harm. Proposition 65 does not ban or restrict the use of listed chemicals. Instead, it requires businesses to provide warnings prior to causing a significant exposure to a listed chemical. It also prohibits discharges of the chemical into sources of drinking water.
The requirement to provide warnings takes effect one year after a chemical is added to the list. Warnings must be clear and reasonable and can be provided in a variety of ways, including on product labels or on signs near where the exposure can occur.
OEHHA is also proposing a regulatory “safe-harbor” level for glyphosate of 1100 micrograms per day, which means that exposures below that level are not considered a significant risk and would not require a warning. The proposal begins a 45-day public comment period that will end on May 22.
The safe-harbor level helps businesses determine when a warning is required. Once the warning requirement takes effect, businesses with 10 or more employees who cause exposures above the safe harbor level may need to provide warnings. It is not known at this time which products and exposures would exceed the safe-harbor level and require warnings.
Glyphosate is being added to the list because it was identified by the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) as causing cancer in animals. Proposition 65 requires that certain chemicals identified as carcinogens by IARC under the California Labor Code must be added to the list.
OEHHA is the lead agency for implementation of Proposition 65 and has established a website that provides information for Californians about their exposures to toxic chemicals from the products they buy and the places they go. The website – www.p65warnings.ca.gov (link is external) – is a central part of OEHHA’s efforts to update and improve the implementation of Proposition 65. The office also maintains and updates the Proposition 65 list of chemicals that cause cancer or reproductive effects.
In addition, OEHHA is the primary state entity for the assessment of risks posed by chemical contaminants in the environment. Its mission is to protect and enhance public health and the environment by scientific evaluation of risks posed by hazardous substances.
Contact: Sam Delson
(916) 324-0955 (O)
(916) 764-0955 (C)
At 22-months Jackson was diagnosed on the autistic spectrum. Doctors told his parents there was no hope of recovery. Over 2 years Mark Hyman, MD addressed his gut inflammation, mercury toxicity, and nutritional imbalances. Today, Jackson’s is a normally functioning little boy who loves baseball and playing with friends.
The question is, can a better understanding of the gut and brain connection be a window into the cure for autism? Do the chemicals produced in the gut affect or cause autism?
Many people have been critical of Dr. Hyman’s video, but it doesn’t dissolve the real question and science at play.
In an article on Autism Speaks, researcher Dae-Wook Kang elaborates:
“Most gut bacteria are beneficial, aiding food digestion, producing vitamins, and protecting against harmful bacteria,” says Dae-Wook Kang of the Biodesign Institute of Arizona State University, an author on the new study. “If left unchecked, however, harmful bacteria can excrete dangerous metabolites or disturb a balance in metabolites that can affect the gut and the rest of the body, including the brain.”
There has been other research suggesting similar gut and autism connections. Research has shown that autistic kids have a different gut bacteria makeup.
In 2014, Kang and his team compared the bacterial waste products in stool samples from 23 children with autism. They compared these to samples from 21 typically developing children.
Overall, they found that children with autism had significantly different concentrations of seven of the fifty chemical compounds they detected.
“Most of the seven metabolites could play a role in the brain as neurotransmitters or controlling neurotransmitter biosynthesis,” Kang says. “We suspect that gut microbes may alter levels of neurotransmitter-related metabolites, affecting gut-to-brain communication and/or altering brain function.”
Research has also shown that abnormal and less diverse communities of gut bacteria exist in children with autism.
Does this mean we will find a cure? It seems the biggest obstacle in finding a cure exists at the pharmaceutical level where cures aren’t profitable. But maybe at some point, private funding makes headway. Autism Speaks started an initiative here.
It has been proposed that both antibiotics and vaccines alter gut bacteria. Could this be a window into the reality of the cause? The greater question is, will we ever really know?
Many people turn to tea as a healthier option. In many cases, people are avoiding coffee or sodas and are persuaded by others that tea is a less harmful caffeine infusion. But many of our most popular brands of teas are laden with pesticides and even fluoride. Less expensive teas are often the corrupted versions.
The core issue is that many tea leafs are sprayed with pesticides so that the tea leaf producer doesn’t experience losses. Often, those tea leafs simply aren’t washed before they are placed in tea bags. Once bagged, your options to wash it yourself have greatly dwindled. Pesticides have been linked to carcinogenic toxins.
Additionally, fluoride has been found to be present in these non-organic versions of tea as well. The tea leafs are exposed to the ground and soil, which is often where the fluoride originates from.
A list of compromised tea companies was disclosed by Canadian research team. Those teas were Signal, Tetley, King Cole, Lipton, Uncle Lee’s Legends of China, Twinnings.
Uncle Lee’s Legends of China contained 20 different types of pesticides.
White tea is made of younger tea leaves, making their exposure to environmental toxins much less than other teas that have aged more in the soil and air. Buying the tea leaves, rather than prebagged, is always helpful. Obviously, you want to go organic. You want to avoid added flavors (your tea shouldn’t need a flavor added unnaturally). Teas you purchase at restaurants is likely not a good source.
But all’s not bad when it comes to tea, so long as you know the facts and how to approach your tea experience. Teas can be incredibly beneficial to your health. For one, many teas, most notably green tea, contain an amino acid called L-Theanine. L-Theanine helps to take the edge off the caffeine. It is one fo the world’s most powerful mood enhancers. You can take it as a supplement directly (here’s L-Theanine on Amazon). Of, just drink green tea and get your fill. This is why green tea has a less edgy, harsh effect than coffee.
Tea is full of antioxidants. Antioxidants fight free radicals from wreaking havoc on the body. Because of this, tea may help in the fight against many degenerative diseases, including cancer. Tea has also been said to boost the immune system. I drink green tea daily. Coffee is simply too harsh and causes me anxiety and insomnia (even when I only drink it in the mornings). It is also an easy way to get fluids into your body. Green teas contain the highest amounts of polyphenols, and the main type, catechin, which is said to be a pretty good nutrient for weight loss. This also means protecting the cells from damage. And THIS can mean less effects of aging in the human body.
There are also compounds in green tea which improve brain function. The caffeine mixed with the L-Theanine vastly improves people’s focus. L-Theanine increases the activity of the inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA. It also pumps up your alpha waves, making your sleep pretty amazing (and sometimes weird). You can drink green tea, or purchase Sun Theanine (the only pure form of L-Theanine outside of green tea). It really is a game changer. I’d never go back to coffee, though some people say they take L-Theanine simply so they can have a better experience on coffee. I’m so used to green tea, I couldn’t imagine going back to coffee, though.
So all is not lost when it comes to drinking tea, you just need to be wise in your approach. Proceed with caution by knowing the facts about tea and you should be able to experience some powerful health benefits. The good news is that tea is very convenient and easy to make for yourself. You aren’t dependent on stores or cafes for it. You can make it in the safe, toxin-free confines of your own home.
Monsanto is embroiled in a bitter lawsuit with farmers, among many, who claim that their exposure to Roundup’s glyphosate chemical caused their non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. During a court proceeding, it came to light that Monsanto potentially authored their own studies and simply had scientists sign the studies. The studies were centered around whether or not to include glyphosate as a carcinogen. According to Monsanto ghostwriters, glyphosate should not be considered a cause of cancer.
Essentially, a PR piece was accepted by the EPA as a standard, reliable study. No joke.
Among the documents unsealed Tuesday was a February 2015 internal e-mail exchange at the company about how to contain costs for a research paper. The plaintiff lawyers cited it to support their claim that the EPA report is unreliable, unlike a report by an international agency that classified glyphosate as a probable carcinogen.
Monsanto Loses Bid to Keep Glyphosate Off List of Carcinogens
“A less expensive/more palatable approach” is to rely on experts only for some areas of contention, while “we ghost-write the Exposure Tox & Genetox sections,” one Monsanto employee wrote to another. “…but we would be keeping the cost down by us doing the writing and they would just edit & sign their names so to speak,” according to the e-mail, which goes to on say that’s how Monsanto handled the 2000 study.
The case is In re: Roundup Products Liability Litigation, MDL 2741, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California (San Francisco). According to Monsanto writers, their company is doing great and everyone adores them. Not really, but maybe so….
When I first told my friends I had been oil pulling, they looked at me as if I were crazy. “What’s oil pulling?” they’d say. “Is this another silly alternative health quackery thing?” You sort of have to expect that when you tell people you swish coconut oil in your mouth for 20 minutes a day.
But as time has went on, some friends (mostly with desperate dental issues) have tried it and now praise it. One of my friends had a case of bad receding gums, his Dentist told him that in 6 months, he needed a follow-up and likely he’d need further processing to resolve the matter. My friend instead asked me how to oil pull. He told me he’d try it and that the truth would reside in what the Dentist, who would not be told of the pulling, would have to say. Six months later, the Dentist told him his gums were all better. And my friend has pulled ever since.
So before I get to how oil pulling helped me, some of you might be wondering what the heck oil pulling is? That’s fair enough, folks.
Oil pulling means you swish oil in your mouth for 20 minutes a day (typically first thing in the morning and typically people use cold pressed coconut oil). I put a teaspoon of coconut oil into my mouth. I swish it around the mouth and “pull” it by sucking it between teeth. I spit it out after 20 minutes (in the garbage, coconut oil can clog your drain). I then rinse my mouth with warm water. And then, well, I brush my teeth and the day begins. The purest will say it MUST be done in the morning, but I’ve never found that to be true. I do it at night sometimes as well and get wonderful results.
So what has doing this amounted to in terms of life improvements for me? Here’s a short, prioritized list.
I began to sleep better.
This was the most immediate effect. The day I started oil pulling, I noticed that I fell into a deep sleep at night. It took a week or so before I related my new found nightly deep slumbers to be related to oil pulling. I’m not here to tell you this will work for you, but I am here to say that it worked for me and it has worked this way for many others. I actually found myself having issues getting up in the morning I was sleeping so deeply, but once I was up, I was good to go: I was revived feeling. As someone commonly prone to restless nights, this unexpected benefit turned into my number one reason for oil pulling.
Plaque fell off my teeth.
I mean this in the literal sense of the description. After about 4 days, I began to notice when I’d spit the oil out that fragments were coming out as well. At first I didn’t realize what they were, but then it became clear. So I ended up getting a dental pick and prodding around, I found that plaque was falling off with relative ease. The oil pulling softens it up and it just unattached from the teeth. Having this happen caused my mouth (and piece of mind) to feel a whole lot better.
My bleeding gums stopped bleeding.
This was becoming a big issue for me. I went to the Dentist a lot over the matter. My gums hurt. Whenever I brushed my teeth, they bled (and hurt). It was tough to even floss due to the pain. I began brushing probably more than I should have. When I started oil pulling, I noticed that some parts of my mouth would bleed almost randomly, without instigation, during the middle of the day or night. At first I was concerned, but others called this a “side effect,” so I kept at it. After about two weeks, I not longer had bleeding gums or pain in my gums.
I felt more energized.
Maybe it was the better sleep, not sure, but I felt a lot more energized after oil pulling. Some say it helps balance blood sugar, which would definitely explain the effect, but I really can’t prove that as the reasoning. All I can say is that the effect was noticeable and defined.
My mouth felt way cleaner.
Brushing never caused my mouth to feel this good. Oil pulling feels like the high-powered car wash spraying every crevice while brushing feels like the bucket of soap and water with a hand-towel. Oil pulling gives your mouth this crazy ultra-clean feeling. I still brush, but I admit, if I had to choose between brushing or pulling, I’d choose pulling.
I broke out, got a flu (yeah, side effects, let’s talk about that).
The good with the bad? Yeah, things happen. I summed it up to a side effect. I got a flu about week into things and noticed acne in places I never have had acne. Could have been anything, of course, but it does seem odd that it happened right when I began oil pulling. Many claim it to be a side effect which happens in the beginning.
But side effect aside, I highly recommend everyone try oil pulling. I really consider it alternative health magic. And it doesn’t cost hardly a thing!
It USED to be found at Costco, but I’m not sure why I never see it anymore. I also use Whole Foods. Here’s the tricky part, I make sure I use “Cold Pressed.” I’ve found that general grocery stores only carry expeller pressed. That means the coconut oil was exposed to heat. Whole Foods tends to have solid variety. Also, Trader Joes coconut oil is cold pressed and they only carry one brand, so you can’t go wrong. I like that one above because it’s so large. You go through it fast if you oil pull and cook with it.
Yes, you can use other oils. Traditionally, sesame oil was used. I didn’t prefer it, but I do use it in a pinch. Most of them are toasted or expeller pressed. Coconut oil seemed to have an almost magical effect.
The PLU code is what stores use to scan items for pricing at the register. It is also a way to file products. And further than that, it is a great way to figure out if you are buying organic produce or GMO produce.
Here’s how it works:
1. A four-digit code beginning with a 3 or a 4 means the produce is probably conventionally grown. The last digits of the code represent the kind of the fruit or vegetable you are buying. For example, bananas are always labeled with the code of 4011.
2. If there are five numbers, and the first is “8?, then the product is genetically modified. The label on genetically modified banana (GE-genetically engineered of GMO) would contain the numbers 84011.
3. A five-digit number that starts with a 9 means the item is organic. Organic bananas are labeled with 94011.
More and more fruits and vegetables are going the way of Monsanto. With the United States propping the massive GMO company up, the sky is the limit for them. We must be more vigilant when it comes to finding local growers who haven’t already been bullied into switching over to GMO. Our children’s futures depend on it.
The more we understand labels, the healthier we can opt to feed ourselves and our families. Details matter. Knowledge is key. Big Food is constantly fighting honest labeling legislation and for good reason: they stand to lose a lot. The more educated the masses become regarding their food’s ingredients, the more likely it is that people will opt to buy healthier, non-GMO versions. Big Food prefers to keep everyone in the dark so they can continue to funnel the masses down unhealthy roads.
Learn to read labels and sign petitions that support fair labeling practices. Stay aware and stay involved in your community. Maybe one day reading a label won’t be as complicated as the above illustration and video make it out to be.