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Mon, 02 May 2016
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Health & Wellness


Processed food packaging messes with your hormones

A new study shows common plastic packaging steeps food in industrial chemicals.

As if it weren't already enough of a headache to find non-toxic, safe and healthy food to eat, a recent study published in the journal Environmental Health Perspective reveals that the packaging used to contain certain food products can impact your hormones. Researchers for the study found that people who eat more fast food have significantly increased rates of phthalates—industrial chemicals used to make plastics—in their systems. The study authors attribute the trend to those chemicals seeping from plastic packaging into foods.

Comment: For a more in depth look at the toxic chemicals found in food packaging and their affects on human health read the following articles:

Life Preserver

Silence is much more important to our brains than we think

In 2011, the Finish Tourist Board ran a campaign that used silence as a marketing 'product'. They sort to entice people to visit Finland and experience the beauty of this silent land. They released a series of photographs of single figures in the nature and used the slogan "Silence, Please". A tag line was added by Simon Anholt, an international country branding consultant, "No talking, but action."
Eva Kiviranta the manager of the social media for VisitFinland.com said: "We decided, instead of saying that it's really empty and really quiet and nobody is talking about anything here, let's embrace it and make it a good thing".
Finland may be on to something very big. You could be seeing the very beginnings of using silence as a selling point as silence may be becoming more and more attractive. As the world around becomes increasingly loud and cluttered you may find yourself seeking out the reprieve that silent places and silence have to offer. This may be a wise move as studies are showing that silence is much more important to your brains than you might think.

Comment: Silence: Why it is so good for your brain

Top Secret

Big Pharma is keeping important information about antidepressants from you

Pharmaceutical companies systematically suppress pertinent data showing the increased risk of suicide and aggression in young patients taking antidepressants, a scientific analysis has demonstrated. Researchers analyzed 70 studies assessing the safety and efficacy of the drugs, concluding that "in children and adolescents the risk of suicidality and aggression doubled" — but information of this nature has often been misrepresented and buried in the appendices of studies.

Though the study was released in January and received a moderate degree of media attention, coverage of the findings tended to highlight the increase in aggression while glossing over the calculated role of pharmaceutical companies and the FDA in suppressing data and supporting faulty science. Some articles acknowledged the poor quality of tests the researchers examined. Others made a point to highlight widespread misreporting, but most stopped short of recognizing the duplicitous nature of the pharmaceutical giants and the FDA, whose willful complicity and consistent flouting of scientific research are central to the concerns raised in the January study.

Comment: Deadly pharma drugs and organised crime: Pushing children into suicide with happy pills


Selenium: An essential mineral that helps the immune system prevent chronic and infectious disease

Selenium is an essential mineral found in varying concentrations in soil. It's found in foods such as Brazil nuts, sunflower seeds and garlic, but the amount in any given food depends on the selenium content of the soil in which it was grown.

Selenium is also found in water and so also occurs in varying quantities in seafood, but despite its relatively common appearance in foods, many people are lacking this important mineral.

It's estimated that 0.5 to 1 billion people worldwide suffer from selenium deficiency while even more consume less selenium than is necessary to provide protection against cancer and severe infectious diseases.1

A Little Bit of Selenium Goes a Long Way Toward Protecting Your Health

Your body has only a small requirement for selenium. The minimum daily recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for this mineral is 55 micrograms (mcg) for adults, and this is one nutrient where you don't want too much.

While small amounts provide important benefits, taking too much (for instance, 400 mcg daily) has potentially been linked to an increased risk of diabetes.2 That being said, unless you're taking a supplement, it's difficult to "overdose" on selenium that's naturally occurring in foods.

Comment: Further reading:


Dangerously high levels of lead found in children's toy jewelry kits

The top U.S. consumer product safety regulator is reviewing whether to recall widely sold toy jewelry-making kits after a New York state probe determined that the products contain dangerously high levels of lead.

Elliot Kaye, who chairs the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, said on Friday that he is examining the safety of Cra-Z-Art kits after New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman called on several big retailers to pull them from store shelves.

The attorney general said sets that his office tested included wristbands with lead levels as high as 980 parts per million, far exceeding the 100-part federal limit for children's products.

He said he sent letters to Amazon.com Inc, Sears Holdings Corp's Kmart, Target Corp, Toys "R" Us, Wal-Mart Stores Inc and other retailers, demanding that they stop selling and recall the sets, which his office said were made in China.

Comment: Buyer beware - this is not the first time that toxic metals have been found in jewelry marketed to children.

Life Preserver

Lifting weights can make you live longer

Older adults who strength trained at least twice a week had 46 percent lower odds of death for any reason than those who did not, according to a survey of 30,000 people.

Many studies have previously found that older adults who are physically active have better quality of life and a lower risk of mortality. Regular exercise is associated with prevention of early death, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and some cancers.

But while the health rewards of physical activity and aerobic exercise are well established, less data have been collected on strength training, perhaps because strength-training guidelines are newer than recommendations for aerobic activity.

Although the American College of Sports Medicine first issued aerobic exercise guidelines decades ago, it was not until 2007 that the organization and the American Heart Association released a joint guideline recommending that all adults strength train at least twice a week.
"This doesn't mean that strength training wasn't a part of what people had been doing for a long time as exercise, but it wasn't until recently that it was solidified in this way as a recommendation,"
says Jennifer L. Kraschnewski, assistant professor of medicine and public health sciences at the Penn State College of Medicine.



What is the miracle mineral for brain, body and spirit? Iodine

When most people think about iodine, they tend to think it's only good for the thyroid. But it's not just the thyroid that is hungry for this mineral! Iodine is also concentrated in the salivary glands, the lining of the stomach and the small intestine, the breasts and ovaries, the eyes, and the part of the brain where cerebro-spinal fluid is produced.

Deficiency of iodine in any tissue can cause problems with that area of the body and weakens the immune system. Some symptoms of iodine deficiency are brain fog, nodules in the skin like are common with arthritis, fibrosis and fibroids, fibromyalgia, and chronic fatigue.

Dr. David Brownstein's book Iodine: Why You Need It, Why You Can't Live Without It is perhaps one of the best's books on iodine. In his book, he explains how iodine can kill fungi, bacteria, viruses and how it removes fluoride and enables the body to detox heavy metals— even the toxic metals (e.g., mercury, cadmium) that other detox methods can't remove.

Comment: See also: Iodine - Suppressed knowledge that can change your life


Gene editing: European Union folds under US pressure to exempt 'New GMOs'

The EU Commission has caved in to US pressure in TTIP trade talks by deciding to consider organisms modified by new 'gene editing' techniques as non-GM - in violation of the EU's own laws. The move could make the 'new GMOs' exempt from labeling and from health and environmental testing.

The European Commission has shelved a legal opinion confirming that a new breed of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) must undergo rigorous safety testing and labelling.

This paradoxical decision - in effect saying that organisms whose genes have been altered using certain novel technologies are not, in fact, genetically modified - follows intense lobbying by the US government.

Comment: Read more about the frightening implications of 'gene editing'
The US Food and Drug Administration approved the nation's first genetically modified animal in 2015 - GMO salmon - and scientists can't wait to add more to the batch. Head of development biology at the University of Edinburgh's Roslin Institute, Professor Bruce Whitelaw has produced swine fever-resistant pigs through a new gene-editing technique. Yeah, he wants to see them also approved by the FDA. [1]

Whitelaw says that much more work is required to refine what he calls a 'precise' process.
"It's a swap of sequence. It's a .00000001 percent change, which is a tiny portion," he adds. "The technology has allowed us to add in and create very precise breeding."
Though these are the claims of many in the biotech industry, gene-editing and other 'cutting-edge' genetic modification techniques don't always work out as they plan. With GM plants bred to resist pests in the field, the industry inadvertently (some argue purposefully) created super bugs, requiring more and more toxic chemicals to be sprayed.

When you consider how long our genes have developed under natural conditions, scientists are really amateurs, hacking away at the genome. Then there are the ethical considerations. One researcher has even proposed modifying the elephant genome to produce a cold-adapted replica of the long-extinct woolly mammoth. [2]


Common heartburn medicines significantly increase risk of severe kidney disease

People taking common heartburn medications known as proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) are at increased risk of new and severe kidney disease, according to a U.S. study.

Among hundreds of thousands of patients in Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) databases, new users of PPIs without kidney disease were 30 percent more likely to develop chronic kidney disease over the course of five years. Their risk of kidney failure was doubled.

PPIs like Nexium and Prevacid are prescribed to treat ulcers, heartburn and acid reflux and are some of the most effective forms of treatment available, the study authors write in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

These drugs are generally viewed as safe and may be overprescribed and continued for long periods without being necessary, they note.

"We suggest judicious use of PPI, and that use be limited to when it is medically necessary and to the shortest duration possible," said senior author Dr. Ziyad Al-Aly, associate chief of staff for research and education at the VA Saint Louis Health Care System.

Comment: These drugs should be avoided like the plague as they are associated with a wide variety of negative health outcomes, including dementia, increased risk of heart attacks, bone fractures and increased risk of infections.


China is in the midst of a vaccine scandal but if it wasn't for the lame-stream media America would be too

A vaccine scandal has erupted in China.

Time Magazine reports ("China Vaccine Scandal Prompts Angry Backlash From Parents and Doctors," 3/22/2016):

"Furious parents and health care professionals in China are demanding to know how almost $90 million of improperly stored and potentially fatal vaccines were distributed across some two-thirds of the country over the past five years, in the latest public-health scandal to raise serious questions over the efficacy of the Chinese Communist Party's rule.

"According to state media, a mother and daughter from eastern China's Shandong province have been caught peddling 25 kinds of unrefrigerated vaccines — including for polio, mumps, rabies, hepatitis B, encephalitis and meningococcal diseases — to medical facilities across 24 Chinese provinces since 2010.

Comment: Refrigerated or fresh, contaminated with serratia or not -- no vaccine has been proven safe and effective.