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Thu, 29 Sep 2016
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End the toxic tyranny - billions against Bayer

© andnowuknow.com
Bayer and Monsanto finally agreed to say "I do" September 14, striking a $66-billion deal that Monsanto CEO Hugh Grant tried to sell as a move to improve "the lives of growers and people around the world."

Wall Street Journal reporter Jacob Bunge painted the news in a different light. Bunge implied that behind the Bayer-Monsanto buyout, a similar proposed merger between Dow and Dupont, and the recently approved ChemChina-Syngenta deal, runs the story of an industry in trouble.

"The dominance of genetically modified crops is under threat," wrote Bunge on Wednesday. Bunge interviewed a Ohio farmer Joe Logan who told him:
"The price we are paying for biotech seed now, we're not able to capture the returns," said Ohio farmer Joe Logan. This spring, Mr. Logan loaded up his planter with soybean seeds costing $85 a bag, nearly five times what he paid two decades ago. Next spring, he says, he plans to sow many of his corn and soybean fields with non-biotech seeds to save money.
With farmers giving up on biotech seeds, a global public wise to the destruction wrought by poisons like glyphosate (Monsanto) and neonicotinoids (Bayer), and a food industry increasingly under pressure to remove GMO ingredients, the Gene Giants figure all they need to do is get bigger - and more powerful - and they'll be able to use their clout to step up the bullying of farmers, governments, scientists and the media.

Comment: Monsanto-Bayer merger advances: 'Five-alarm threat to our food supply & to farmers around the world'


Document

EPA says Monsanto's herbicide glyphosate 'likely not carcinogenic'

© wattsupwiththat.com
Glyphosate, the key ingredient in Monsanto Co's Roundup herbicide, is not likely carcinogenic to humans, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said on Friday as it outlined its current position on the controversial chemical.

The EPA has been involved in a decades-long process to assess human and animal health risks, as well as ecological risks, of glyphosate. Various agencies around the world have offered conflicting opinions on whether glyphosate causes cancer.

The EPA's "proposed" position on glyphosate was outlined in a 227-page paper it published on the regulations.gov website, which the EPA manages.

After reviewing the available data, the paper states, "The strongest support is for 'not likely to be carcinogenic to humans' at doses relevant to human health risk assessment."

Comment: Talk about the fox guarding the hen house! The evidence keeps mounting, regulatory bodies like the EPA continue to warp science, distort the truth and keep consumers in the dark!


Biohazard

Kansas kids mysteriously ill...in the same town as the forthcoming DHS Bio-Safety lab

Manhattan, Kansas is in the news due to a mysterious illness sweeping through schools and making hundreds of children ill. Natural Blaze reports:
Symptoms include the necessity to go home due to stomach issues like nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. At first, officials thought it was norovirus (highly contagious stomach flu). Indeed, the media reports and officials were certain it was norovirus and a major outbreak had practically downed a Nevada school last year. However, as the sickness continues, this idea has been abandoned even though it spreads in a similar manner.

Additionally, some of the symptoms are not consistent among all the students. For instance, the middle and elementary students began contracting the sickness, but unlike the high schoolers, they are reporting fever as well. Last Friday, the high school principal issued a desperate plea for the sick students to provide stool samples to the health department.
As sorry as I feel for the children involved, this type of mystery illness is nothing to what may be waiting for them in the future due to the last reason that Manhattan, Kansas made headlines.

Wreath

Australia reschedules and legalizes marijuana for therapeutic use

Last week, the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), Australia's version of the FDA, announced formal plans to legalize medical marijuana throughout the country this November.

The TGA has recognized the medicinal use of some cannabinoids since 1984, yet Australia's National Drugs and Poisons Scheduling Committee (NDPSC) has kept cannabis a Schedule 9 controlled substance.

"The scheduling of cannabis and its extracts has been considered by the National Drugs and Poisons Scheduling Committee (NDPSC) on a number of occasions," the TGA states in a description of the scheduling history. "Currently, cannabis is a Schedule 9 substance, i.e., a prohibited substance which may be abused or misused and the manufacture, possession, sale or use of which is prohibited by law."

Australia has gone through a similar heart-wrenching legalization process as many other nations, driven by parents illegally treating their epileptic children with cannabis while citizens also openly participate in mass civil disobedience of recreational smoking events as depicted in the video report below.

Magnify

Bacterial cells vs. human cells in the body


Who’s living whom? Think you’re in charge? The bacterial-human cell ratio shows your human cells are greatly outnumbered by microbiome (bacterial) cells in your body.
The bacterial-human cell ratio in the body is quite astounding, if you didn't already know it. Did you realize that the amount of bacteria in your body vastly outnumber everything else?The bacterial-human cell ratio is estimated to be around 10:1! That means for every human cell in your body, there are roughly 10 bacterial cells. So who's living whom? Who's in charge? It's certainly not the human "you", because you only have one eleventh of the numbers (although human cells are far larger and heavier). The bacterial-human cell ratio reaffirms the importance of having a healthy bio-terrain (i.e. having the right balance of, and an abundance of, healthy bacteria in your body), which is what many alternative and holistic healing modalities teach. Ultimately, it also lends weight to the idea that it is your body's bio-terrain or inner environment that determines your state of health and immunity - not whether you are exposed to a particular bacterium or virus as is the prevailing view in Western Medicine.

Comment: The cutting edge of gut health and disease


Health

The gut-brain connection, mental illness, and disease

Psychobiotics, immunology, and the theory of all chronic disease.

We are never truly alone. On our skin, in our gums, and in our guts live 100 trillion organisms, altogether known as the microbiome. These beasties comprise 90% of the cells of our bodies, though these cells are so tiny in size that it appears our own human cells predominate. It is only recently that we have begun to study these organisms with any depth. Most of them live within the gut, and cannot be cultured, and only with the advent of advanced genetic testing have we been able to have a better understanding of the variety and numbers of microbes we're dealing with. They are Bacteria, Archaea, and even some eukariotic parasites, protozoans, and fungi.

What do they have to do with psychiatry? It turns out way more than we might have suspected. The gut and brain have a steady ability to communicate via the nervous system, hormones, and the immune system. Some of the microbiome can release neurotransmitters, just like our own neurons do, speaking to the brain in its own language via the vagus nerve.

To have a full understanding of how the whole gut-brain connection works, you need robust knowledge of endocrinology, immunology, pathology, and neurology, which is a bit beyond the scope of a blog article. However, to break it down to simplistic terms, here are the basic links:

Comment: For an update on this topic, read:

The cutting edge of gut health and disease
In both human and rodent studies, increasing obesity, insulin resistance, and fasting glucose levels correlate linearly with decreasing distance between gut bacteria and the cells lining the intestine. This invasion of bacteria on the front lines of the gut is called "bacterial encroachment," reminding us that our relationship with our microbiota is best characterized as "frenemies." Andrew Gewirtz leads a team at Penn that published the sobering paper in Nature last year, showing how modest amounts of emulsifying agents nearly universally found in processed food damaged the microbiome and intestinal cells, causing colitis in mice. He made the sensible recommendation to avoid processed food in favor of eating fresh, whole foods.

He's also been able to reverse some damaging effects of more processed, purified diets in mice by adding the fermentable fiber inulin to their chow. The inulin feeds the microbiota and makes them more diverse and robust. However, along the lines of the "frenemies" designation, immune compromised mice got sick when fed inulin, meaning we have to be careful about making recommendations for fiber blooming of our gut microbes. It may make sense to use multiple step treatments, eliminating pathogens with temporary low fermentable fiber diets and possibly antibiotics, then adding in more friendly probiotics, feeding them with fiber. These complex protocols have yet to be studied in a systematic way in humans and remain experimental.



Hearts

The cutting edge of gut health and disease

Probiotics and other microbiome manipulations have been touted as cures to everything from obesity to colitis to allergies and autism. Certainly the potential for these agents and methods are exciting, but what where is the line, now, between dangerous hype and the state of the art research being done?

The perfect way to answer that question was a symposium this past week at Harvard Medical School on gut health, microbiota, and probiotics, bringing together world experts in the field. Microbiota researchers in obesity and metabolism along with those studying effects of gut health and probiotics on the brain shared their work isolating mechanisms of action of the microbiota on these diverse physiologies.

Rob Knight, PhD, a key leader of the American Gut project, made the striking point that the cost of sequencing the microbiota for study has dropped 4-5 orders of magnitude in the last 11 years. While most of the speakers at this symposium are sponsored by large national grants and have dozens of researchers working with them, in a few years we may have many more teams working on translating what we know about the microbiota from animal research into clinical trials for humans. From his research establishing differences between gut bacteria in healthy and obese people, Knight figured out that most commercially available probiotics (which have the important FDA designation 'GRAS' or "generally recognized as safe) are likely not the right taxa to show robust results in humans. This means more work has to be done in safety testing for new strains before more significant progress can be made in human trials.

Comment: For more background information, read:


Bulb

An elementary school has kids meditate instead of punishing them and the results are profound

It was recently reported that Robert W. Coleman Elementary in West Baltimore will be taking a new and holistic approach to disciplining students. Instead of punishing them or sending them to the principal's office, administrators will now be sending children to "the mindful moment room" where they will be able to meditate and wind down.

The new policy has been in place for over a year, and in the time that the meditation room has been set up, there has actually been no suspensions throughout the entire year.

Comment: A great way to control stress, promote healing, detoxing and rejuvenation is through the Éiriú Eolas program.


Water

The woman who is allergic to water

Rachel's rare condition means that a bath is agony; even her own tears will scorch her face. How can the human body reject life's most basic necessity?

Rachel wakes up - and drinks a kind of poison that feels like a glass of stinging nettles. As it slips downs her throat, she can feel it blistering her skin, leaving a trail of red, itchy welts behind. Later that day, scorching drops of the stuff start falling from the sky. At the local leisure centre, she watches others splash around in a pool of the irritant. They seem unfazed, but the moment she dips her toe in, she's faced with burning pain.

No, this is not some bizarre alternate reality. This is the world of Rachel Warwick, who is allergic to water. It's a world where relaxing baths are the stuff of nightmares and snorkelling in tropical seas is as appealing as rubbing yourself with bleach. "Those things are my idea of hell," she says.

Rose

Sleep tight, don't let the bedbugs bite

Nothing is more exasperating than having your good night's sleep disturbed by bed bugs all over your bed. Bed bugs (Cimex lectularius) are small (but terrible) wingless insects that feed on the blood of warm-blooded animals, including humans.1

They are usually brown to reddish-brown, and are roughly the size of an apple seed, measuring 5 to 7 millimeters long. Their bodies, when not fed, are flat and oval-shaped, but become balloon-like and more elongated when nourished.2

While the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) notes that bed bugs aren't a medical or public health hazard because they don't spread disease, this doesn't mean you should take these insects lightly.

Aside from sleep loss, you can become susceptible to bed bug bites (red swollen bumps that are similar to mosquito bites) and frequent itchiness that could result in excessive scratching and secondary skin infections.3

Learn more about how bed bugs are affecting the U.S., the best ways to drive them away from your home and prevention techniques that you can practice.

Comment: See also: