Natural Cures Not Medicine: 08/29/13

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US Government Once Again Hiring Monsanto Employees

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Following in the footsteps of other Monsanto bigwigs going through the government’s revolving door, the seed company has again supplied a staff member for a position of authority in one of the very agencies that are allegedly present to protect the public from unsafe farming practices.  The Iowa Department of Agriculture has hired Mike Naig to serve as the deputy secretary.
Agriculture Secretary Bill Northey announced he has hired former Monsanto lobbyist Mike Naig as deputy secretary.
Naig was manager of state and local government affairs for Monsanto, the nation’s largest seed-corn company and a farm-chemical giant.
Naig will start Sept. 4.
“Mike will be a tremendous asset to the department and I’m glad he agreed to join our team,” Northey said in a statement. “His background and experience make him a natural fit for the department.”
…Naig will help manage the ag department, especially on personnel and budget issues. (source)
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Next Up in the GMO Line: Apples

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Emboldened by the U.S. government’s repeated willingness to unleash genetically modified food on its citizens, biotech companies have big plans for our future.
Image: Wikimedia commons

A Canadian biotech company called Okanagan Specialty Fruits developed a GM apple currently under review by the FDA. This would be one of the first genetically modified fruits on store shelves in the U.S. The “Arctic Apple” would not turn brown after being sliced or bitten into.

It seems almost funny, considering that people have never seemed to have a problem with this bit of browning during the apple’s thousands of years in cultivated existence.

Of course, the company touts all sorts of benefits the FrankenApple would provide. It would allow sliced apples to be sold in bags for convenient school lunches (it’s for the kids!), and restaurants could abandon the need to use preservatives to keep their fruit salads fresh (what about all the other fruits in there?).
Apple growers are worried because the introduction of a GMO fruit would force them to implement costly measures to protect against cross-contamination and would decrease sales to foreign markets where GMO labeling and restrictions exist.

Perhaps even scarier than a GM apple is the almost certain prospect of Monsanto’s next herbicide-resistant crop. Monsanto must be very assured of government approval, because they’ve already planted the stuff at
“Ground-Breaker” demonstration plots in North and South Dakota for farm media.

The new GM crop is a soybean resistant to dicamba, a more toxic and more volatile herbicide than RoundUp. This development is causing extreme concern among farmers and concerned citizens due to the high volatility of dicamba during spraying. It is known to drift for miles, even 100 miles in one case where it damaged 15,000 acres of cotton and pomegranate orchard.

Monsanto has said they are working on a new formulation of dicamba that isn’t as volatile. Needless to say, folks aren’t buying the reassurances. Monsanto also issued guidelines for cleaning dicamba sprayer tanks that are so onerous and time-consuming it is hard to believe people will be able to follow them adequately.
Considering the astronomical rise in RoundUp sales after the RoundUp Ready system was introduced during the 1990s, Monsanto can look forward to huge profits as it sells another patented life form to dependent farmers along with patented chemicals.

And we can look forward to millions of acres of farmland being drenched in a more toxic and volatile herbicide, creating runoff into aquatic ecosystems and damaging crops and vegetable gardens of the unfortunate people who live nearby.

Let’s not forget that the industrial agriculture demand for another herbicide-resistant crop is due to the fact that weeds have developed resistance to RoundUp, the key component of Monsanto’s first foray into GMO herbicide resistance.

Monsanto creates the problem, then genetically engineers a solution to it, all the while making farmers dependent on their products. And when weeds develop resistance to dicamba, we can be assured that Monsanto is working on the next “solution.”

by Justin Gardener


These 5 Foods May Cause Health Problems Similar to Wheat

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Image: Raw For Beauty
While eliminating wheat from your diet is an excellent and necessary step for improving health, it may not be alone sufficient, especially in those with serious health challenges.

According to a series of articles on the website Green Med Info, there are other foods in the Western diet that have properties similar to wheat, because they contain “chitin binding lectins”, which are similar to wheat lectin (WGA).

Chitins are long polymers of n-acetyl-glucosamine, the primary binding target of wheat lectin. Wheat lectin and chitin-binding lectin are therefore functionally identical. Chitin-binding lectin containing foods include:


Additionally, sprouted grains, which are typically considered to be healthful fare can also be problematic for a couple of different reasons. Not only do sprouted whole wheat contain the highest amounts of wheat lectin, SPROUTED GRAINS ALSO CONTAIN BENZOXAZINOIDS (BAS)—a surprisingly toxic component!

Even a modest reduction in consumption of these types of carbohydrate-rich foods may promote loss of deep belly fat. This could help reduce the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, stroke and coronary artery disease, as excess visceral fat (intra-abdominal fat) raises the risk of these diseases.

According to Eurekalert:
“… [S]ubjects who consumed [a] moderately carb-restricted diet had 11 percent less deep abdominal fat than those who ate the standard diet … [S]ubjects on both diets lost weight. However, the moderately carb-restricted diet promoted a 4 percent greater loss of total bod
Non-Wheat Grains May Be Just as Bad as Wheat…

If you have celiac disease (gluten intolerance), it’s absolutely imperative to avoid all kinds of gluten—primarily wheat. But did you know that other non-wheat grains, and even some vegetables, such as tomato, may be problematic as well? Yes, there are a number of other foods with very similar properties to wheat! The following foods contain “chitin binding lectins”, which are similar to wheat lectin (WGA):


“Chitins” are long polymers of n-acetyl-glucosamine, the primary binding target of wheat lectin. Wheat lectin and “chitin-binding lectin” are therefore functionally identical. This is probably news to most people, and could be an important tidbit for anyone struggling with celiac disease, or any other gastrointestinal issues.

Be Careful if You Have Insulin Resistance

About 85 percent of the people in the population have insulin resistance, and eating any grains, even healthy organic unprocessed ones can be a problem. How do you know if you have insulin resistance?
There are two ways.

You can measure your fasting insulin level. It should be under 3. It is relatively inexpensive and I believe most people should have it done The higher it is, the worse your insulin resistance. If you want to forgo the hassle of a blood test then you can use clinical conditions as a gauge. If you have any of the following four conditions you most likely have insulin resistance

High blood pressure
High cholesterol

I have explained this information for many years, but now we have new scientific research documenting that grains have other problems that are appear to be unrelated to insulin resistance, and I will review them below.

Sprouted Grains—Perhaps Not as Healthful as You’ve Been Told

The sprouts of grains such as wheat, maize, and rye are increasingly being consumed as health foods, and are also used for the production of dietary supplements. However, sprouted wheat actually contains the highest amounts of wheat lectin (WGA)—which is responsible for many of wheat’s ill health effects! And that’s not all. These sprouts (wheat, maize and rye) also contain benzoxazinoids (BAs). Benzoxazinoids are part of the plants’ defense system against pests, and are actually toxic components…

A STUDY FROM 2007, PUBLISHED IN THE JOURNAL CANCER LETTERS, investigated the mutagenic activities of the two most abundant BA’s in these sprouted grains. Both types of BA were found be mutagens, meaning capable of altering genetic material, and both were also found to be aneugenic, meaning they affect cell division and lead to aneuploidy, an incorrect number of chromosomes.

“This is an interesting observation as it is assumed that aneuploidy is a key event in cancer induction and at present no other aneugenic plant-derived substances of dietary relevance are known,” THE AUTHORS WROTE.

Now, I think it may be risky to claim that sprouted grains are outright toxic when ingested. That’s probably not exactly the case. There may be mitigating factors involved, as there often are when you’re dealing with a whole food.

Bread Consumption and Cancer 

That said, bread (grain) consumption in general has been shown to increase your risk of cancer… For example, AN ITALIAN STUDY PUBLISHED IN 2007 found “a significant direct trend in risk” between bread consumption and renal cell carcinoma. Compared to those with the lowest consumption, those with the highest bread consumption nearly doubled their risk of this type of kidney cancer.

Pasta and rice consumption increased the risk by almost 30 percent.
Although that study didn’t specify the disease mechanism at play, it’s a well-known fact that excessive grain consumption leads to insulin resistance—sooner or later—and that insulin resistance is the primary underlying factor of most chronic disease, including cancer. My feeling is that you start to dramatically increase your risk for cancer once your fasting blood sugar rises above 100. The higher your blood sugar level, the higher your risk of cancer. As for your insulin; your fasting insulin level should, ideally, be below 3, as mentioned earlier.

Aside from cancer, all those daily bowls of cereal and sandwiches also amount to an increased risk of type 2 diabetes and heart disease. A STUDY PUBLISHED JUST LAST YEAR found that women who eat a lot of foods high in blood sugar-spiking carbohydrates, such as white bread and rice, double their risk of heart disease.

This is because, when you eat more carbohydrates than your body can use, the excess energy is converted to unhealthy fats by your liver which push YOUR CHOLESTEROL RATIOS in the wrong direction. This process occurs to help your body maintain blood sugar control in the short-term, however it will likely increase triglyceride concentrations, which in turn increases your risk of cardiovascular disease. It’s unfortunate that so many physicians are still clueless about insulin’s influence on cancer and heart disease, but that doesn’t mean you have to be!

read more here: MERCOLA.COM

Source: Raw For Beauty

3 Ounces of This Food a Day May Be Harming Your Brain

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By Dr. Mercola

Eating wheat may not be beneficial to your health. Among many other reasons, each grain contains about one microgram of Wheat Germ Agglutinin (WGA). Even in small quantities, WGA can have profoundly adverse effects. It may be pro-inflammatory, immunotoxic, cardiotoxic … and neurotoxic.
Image: Raw For Beauty

According to an article on Green Med Info:
“WGA can pass through the blood brain barrier (BBB) through a process called ‘adsorptive endocytosis’ … WGA may attach to the protective coating on the nerves known as the myelin sheathand is capable of inhibiting nerve growth factor which is important for the growth, maintenance, and survival of certain target neurons. WGA binds to N-Acetylglucosamine which is believed to function as an atypical neurotransmitter functioning in nocioceptive (pain) pathways.”

Most people believe that grains are a wholesome part of a healthy diet, particularly whole grains, such as whole wheat. Whole grains are also one of the relatively few foods that are allowed to make health claims on their labels, relating whole grains with a reduced risk of heart disease and certain cancers.

Unfortunately, there’s a large body of evidence indicating that whole grains, and whole wheat in particular (yes even organic), can contribute to significant health problems—both physical and mental. This evidence, however, has not registered with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), or the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)—the first two of which developed the dietary guideline to consumer three or more ounces of whole grain products per day.

When you begin to review the evidence stacked up against whole grains, it becomes rather self-evident that our reliance on wheat and other grains may be one of the primary culprits for the poor health of so many.
Here, my primary focus will be on the mental health impacts of wheat, but for even more information about why wheat isn’t the health food you’ve been lead to believe, please review the two articles referenced above, and the long list of related studies.

The Side Effects of Wheat Consumption—It’s Not Just about Celiac Disease

Many of you may be familiar with Celiac Disease (CD), a gastrointestinal disorder characterized by intolerance to wheat gluten. According to statistics from the University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center, an average of one out of every 133 otherwise healthy people in the United States suffers from CD. However, an estimated 20-30 percent of the world’s population may carry the genetic susceptibility to celiac disease—and the way to avoid turning these genes ‘on’ is by avoiding gluten.
When you consider that undiagnosed CD is associated with a nearly four-fold increased risk of premature death, the seriousness of this food sensitivity becomes quite evident. The primary disease mechanism at play is chronic inflammation, and chronic inflammatory and degenerative conditions are endemic to grain-consuming populations.

However, other rampant health afflictions include depression, ADD/ADHD, and Alzheimer’s disease, just to name a few. As it turns out, excessive wheat consumption may play a significant role here as well. In fact, there’s evidence suggesting that gluten sensitivity may be at the root of many neurological and psychiatric conditions.

The Toxic Effects of Wheat Germ Agglutinin (WGA)

Wheat contains high amounts of wheat germ agglutinin (WGA); a glycoprotein classified as a lectin, which is largely responsible for many of wheat’s ill effects. Other grains high in lectins include rice, spelt, and rye.
Interestingly enough, the highest amounts of WGA is found in whole wheat, including its sprouted form, which is touted as being the most healthful form of all…  Aside from high amounts of WGA, wheat also contains a number of other potentially health-harming components, including:

Gliadin (an alcohol soluble protein component

Gliadomorpin (exorphins, or group of opioid peptides that form during digestion of the gluten protein)

Enzyme inhibitors

The traditional ways of addressing many of these anti-nutrients is by sprouting, fermenting and cooking. However, lectins are designed to withstand degradation through a wide range of pH and temperatures. WGA lectin is particularly tough because it’s actually formed by the same disulfide bonds that give strength and resilience to vulcanized rubber and human hair.

Furthermore, because lectins are so small, and hard to digest, they tend to bioaccumulate in your body, where they can interfere with biological processes. WGA is particularly troublesome in this regard. Studies indicate it has a number of health-harming characteristics and activities:

read more at MERCOLA.COM



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