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Fri, 30 Sep 2016
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Health & Wellness


Big Pharma ghostwriting has a new name but same problems

© hobvias sudoneighm, Flickr
Consultant explains how 'Editorial Assistance' is used to hide ghostwriting practices

A new paper, published in the British Medical Journal, explains how the pharmaceutical industry has publicly denounced ghostwriting while still finding ways to engage in the practice. The author, Alastair Matheson, who worked as a consultant in pharmaceutical marketing and medical communications for 18 years, argues that the focus on ghostwriting has obscured the many other practices used to turn medical publications into marketing tools for industry, and describes medicine's complicity in this process.
"The roots of misattribution lie not in commercial calculation alone but the customs, standards, and self-interest of medicine and its publishing practices. Ghostwriting is merely one part of an entrenched culture of misattribution that serves the interests of commercial and academic stakeholders alike," writes Matheson.

Comment: Drug Company Used Ghost Writers to Author Work Bylined by Academics, Documents Show

Also read the confessions of a 'ghostwriter'
Ethical concerns about medical ghostwriting have been directed primarily at "guest" authors and the pharmaceutical companies that pay them. One voice that is largely missing is that of the ghostwriters themselves who, after all, create the documents that are in the ethical and legal crosshairs. Without them, one could argue, there can be no fraud, because it is they who create the fraudulent product.

For almost 11 years, I worked as a medical writer, creating a variety of pieces including the occasional ghostwritten article. For the most part, I never saw the finished paper, nor did I care to. This article describes what I did, why I did it, why I stopped doing it, and what I think might be done about the problem of fraud in authorship.


Tyson foods 'voluntarily' recalls chicken nuggets due to presence of 'hard, white plastic'

© Tyson foods
You may want to check those chicken nuggets in your freezer before feeding them to your kids. Tyson Foods is voluntarily recalling more than 130,000 pounds of the pre-cooked breaded delights, because they may contain hard plastic.

The US Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced the recall of five-pound bags of Tyson Fully Cooked Panko Chicken Nuggets that were sold at Costco stores nationwide and 20 pound cases of bulk Spare Time brand cooked nuggets sold to a single wholesaler in Pennsylvania.

The Arkansas-based Tyson issued the recall after "a small number of consumers" told the company they had"found small pieces of hard, white plastic in the nuggets." The plastic ranged in size from 21mm in length and 6.5mm in diameter.

Comment: More horrifying things about the chicken you eat:


Even at low dilutions Manuka honey inhibits the activity and growth of bacterial biofilms

Even low dilutions of Manuka honey can curb the activity and growth of bacterial biofilms -- the thin but resilient layer of microbes that build up on, and stick to, any surface including plastic, according to new research from the University of Southampton.

The findings, published online in the Journal of Clinical Pathology, raise the prospect of the honey's potential use in patients fitted with medical devices, such as urinary catheters, which carry a high infection risk.

Around 100 million urinary catheters, used to drain the bladder of urine, are sold worldwide every year. Up to one in four hospital inpatients may have to use a catheter. However, long-term use is associated with frequent complications, such as inflammation and infection.

The use of honey as a health remedy dates back centuries, and among other things, recent research suggests that it may have antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. Manuka honey is a monofloral honey produced in Australia and New Zealand from the nectar of the manuka tree.

Comment: In recent years a growing body of research is starting to support the thousands of years of folk medicine's use of Manuka honey. Among the many benefits, it has been found effective in healing intestinal inflammation and pain, balancing the digestive system; improving wound healing and helping cure gingivitis and periodontal disease.


The 13 tentacles of the Big Pharma octopus

This is a preview to the Era of Wisdom documentary "Toddlers on Adderall: History of "Big Pharma" and the Major Players," to be released December 28, 2016.

Written and directed by Cassius Kamarampi, narrated by Josh Mur. Music by Cassius Kamarampi. (Link to image credits and sources)

Transcript (video below):

In our society, we often correlate legality with safety. We use household products, spray pesticides, and religiously consume drugs such as ritalin, adderall, oxycontin, and prozac.

We consume all of this, but how many know who made the drugs, and where the corporations came from? Who produces the chemicals we trust on a daily basis?


Modern day witch hunts: The Inquisitorial roots of the war on natural medicine

In case you're not aware, there is a not-entirely-covert war being waged by mainstream medicine (ably funded by Big Pharma) against all forms of natural medicine. Anything that non-toxically and non-invasively stimulates or capitalises on the body's own programmed and innate healing mechanisms is not to be tolerated. Not only is it not to be tolerated, but it is to be attacked as viciously and as (in)humanly as possible, demonized, and crushed forever more.

Have you ever wondered just how far back this antipathy and irrational fear and loathing extends?

Some of you might point to the Rockefeller family and the incredible job they have done in destroying the reputations of all forms of natural medicine, as well as crushing all competitors using every (despicable) method possible. You'd be right, of course, in acknowledging their role, however, the ancient mental programs - "legacy programs" - that inhabit such imbalanced people and lead them to act in such tyrannical and violent ways are much older than David Rockefeller. He merely inherited them from a bygone age.

How much older are we talking?


WHO report: Over 90% of the world's population breathes bad air

© Fred Dufour
A woman wearing a face mask during a yellow alert for air pollution in Beijing on March 18, 2016
Nine out of 10 people globally are breathing poor quality air, the World Health Organization said Tuesday, calling for dramatic action against pollution that is blamed for more than six million deaths a year.

New data in a report from the UN's global health body 'is enough to make all of us extremely concerned,' Maria Neira, the head of the WHO's department of public health and environment, told reporters.

The problem is most acute in cities, but air in rural areas is worse than many think, WHO experts said.

Poorer countries have much dirtier air than the developed world, according to the report, but pollution 'affects practically all countries in the world and all parts of society', Neira said in a statement.

'It is a public health emergency,' she said.

'Fast action to tackle air pollution can't come soon enough,' she added, urging governments to cut the number of vehicles on the road, improve waste management and promote clean cooking fuel.

Tuesday's report was based on data collected from more than 3,000 sites across the globe.

Nine out of 10 people globally are breathing poor quality air, the World Health Organization said Tuesday, calling for dramatic action.



CDC adds more vaccines to childhood immunization schedule

Up, up and away!

This pretty much describes the CDC Childhood Immunization Schedule since 1950.

On February 1, 2016, the insanity continued as the CDC hiked the childhood immunization schedule even further by adding another 3 vaccinations and lowering the age for the first HPV jab (Gardasil) to 9 years old. The total is now an outrageous 74 doses (53 injections) by age 17, an increase of 24X since 1950.

Have our children become pin cushions of profit for the drug companies? Here's the breakdown. You decide.
  • In 1950, there were 3 childhood vaccines typically given when a child entered school.
  • In 1983, there were 10 recommended vaccines by the age of 6 years old (24 doses, 7 injections, 4 oral doses for polio).
  • In 2010, the CDC vax schedule totaled 68 doses with more than half given by the time a child was only a year and a half old.
  • In 2016, the schedule has increased to 74 doses by age 17 with 53 injections and 3 oral doses of rotavirus.


Ozone therapy is powerful medicine

This little-known therapy is being used by 40,000 physicians and dentists in more than 50 countries for everything from herniated disks to endodontic infections to Lyme disease, with no virtually adverse effects.

Until the turn of the century, ozone therapy has remained somewhat of a "best kept medical secret" in North America. This is a shame because it can be a safe, cost effective and powerful boost to your health, providing relief from a variety of painful and disabling illnesses.

The widespread medical use of ozone first appeared in Germany in the early 1950s and has been used extensively across Europe ever since. During World War I, it was used to treat infected wounds, but ozone was subsequently swept under the rug by the pharmaceutical industry in their push toward antibiotics. With growing numbers of bacteria now becoming resistant to antibiotics, we now have an urgent need for anti-infectives that will kill these superbugs before they can kill us.

Because of ozone's remarkable antiseptic power, its most common technological application is water purification. As a disinfectant, ozone is 1,000 times more powerful than chlorine, which is why more than 600 US cities use it in water treatment facilities.


Deadly sugar alternative: California to consider listing aspartame as a substance known to cause cancer

While the sale of soda, and notably diet soda, has continued to plummet over the past 30 years,1 artificial sweeteners are also found in over 6,000 different processed food products.2 It appears sales of soda products have reached an all-time low in response to consumers' demand for healthier alternatives.

Sales figures demonstrate bottled water is poised to overtake soda as the largest beverage category.3 The switch from soda, packed with more chemicals than just aspartame, to bottled water as a drink of choice, is heartening.

However, it's important to remember that other products on your grocery store shelves also contain zero- or low-calorie high-intensity sweeteners to tempt your palate.

According to the Drug Information and Side Effects Database, aspartame can be found in a variety of different products from chewing gum and frozen desserts to condiments, ice tea and vegetable drinks.4 A wide range of over-the-counter (OTC) and prescription drugs also contain aspartame.5

So, as you are reducing the number of carbonated drinks for you and your family, also remember to read the labels on your chewing gum, yogurts, cold and frozen desserts, children's vitamins and other pharmaceutical products for aspartame or brand names like NutraSweet or Equal.

Comment: For more information on this highly toxic poison that the food industry and the FDA still claim to be safe, see:


Artificial sweetener's sketchy science hits a sour note

Study casts doubt on artificial sweeteners' health claims

University of Sydney researchers have confirmed widespread bias in industry-funded research into artificial sweeteners, which is potentially misleading millions by overstating their health benefits.

In the same week that the sugar industry came under fire for influencing the integrity of scientific research, this new comprehensive review of artificial sweetener studies reveals that reviews funded by artificial sweetener companies were nearly 17 times more likely to have favourable results.

The review, published in the latest edition of PLOS ONE journal, analyzed 31 studies into artificial sweeteners between 1978 and 2014. The reviews considered both the potentially beneficial effects of artificial sweeteners, such as weight loss, as well as harmful effects like diabetes.

Comment: Surprised?! Artificial Sweeteners are Continually Found to be Unsafe and Toxic: