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Make a list and check it twice: “Dirty Dozen” list of fruits and vegetables CONTAMINATED with pesticide residue

AvocadoA healthy diet contains lots of fresh fruits and vegetables. However, certain types of produce can also be bad for you. It’s not the produce themselves that are bad, but some fruits and vegetables may contain traces of harmful pesticides that are linked to harmful side effects.

Each year, the Environmental Working Group(EWG) publishes a list made up of the “Dirty Dozen.” This list ranks the pesticide contamination of popular fruits and vegetables. Both the Dirty Dozen and the Clean Fifteen lists are based on results of over 40,900 samples of produce tested by the U.S.Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

All the samples are tested for pesticides after they have been prepared to be eaten, which means the produce is first carefully washed and peeled (when applicable). After the produce has been prepared, results indicate that many of the fruits and vegetables still contain pesticide residues.

Dirty Dozen (2019)

Below is EWG’s 2019 Dirty Dozen:

  1. Strawberries
  2. Spinach
  3. Kale
  4. Nectarines
  5. Apples
  6. Grapes
  7. Peaches
  8. Cherries
  9. Pears
  10. Tomatoes
  11. Celery
  12. Potatoes

For the past four years, strawberries remained in the top spot for the Dirty Dozen. The list is similar to last year’s results, with the exception of kale, which made the top 12 for the first time in 10 years. (Related: Pesticide chemicals found in 70% of fresh produce sold in U.S. grocery stores… are you eating poison?)

But according to Jaclyn London, a registered dietitian and Good Housekeeping’s nutrition director, you can still eat the fruits and vegetables included in this list if you buy organic produce that is free from genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and pesticide residue.

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Clean Fifteen (2019)

The EWG also published the “Clean Fifteen,” a list that includes 15 of fruits and vegetables “from conventional growers that generally had less residue in the group’s tests.”

  1. Avocados
  2. Sweet corn
  3. Pineapples
  4. Frozen sweet peas
  5. Onions
  6. Papayas
  7. Eggplants
  8. Asparagus
  9. Kiwis
  10. Cabbages
  11. Cauliflower
  12. Cantaloupes
  13. Broccoli
  14. Mushrooms
  15. Honeydew melons

London notes that there are two important factors to consider when it comes to produce.

  • Try to eat more. If you want to be healthier, eat more organic fruits and vegetables. Snack on apples or eat a salad for lunch daily. Whenever you skip a fast food meal, you’re one step closer to improving your overall well-being.
  • Think about whole foods vs. fresh foods. Whole refers to the best form in which to eat fiber-filled fruit and vegetables, such as fruit instead of fruit juice or vegetables instead of veggie chips. Choosing whole foods will also help you reduce your intake of added sugar, saturated fat, and sodium. This may also include frozen and canned produce.

How to avoid pesticide residues in food

Pesticides don’t just keep insects from destroying crops. They are also linked to negative side effects such as cancer and Parkinson’s disease.

Aside from buying organic produce, there are several ways to avoid buying food laced with pesticides.

Always wash fruits and vegetables before eating them.

Washing produce, even if you grew it in your garden, helps get rid of dust, dirt, or chemical residues. Either rub the fruits and vegetables clean with your fingers or to use a special cleaning brush to get rid of all the residue and bacteria.

Don’t rinse produce with soap.

Don’t use detergents or special soaps to wash produce, unless you’re using soap made of natural and organic materials. Dish soap has harmful compounds that can easily penetrate the skin of fruits and vegetables, which may end up doing more harm than pesticides.

Grow your own produce.

Not everyone can cultivate their own garden, but this the best way to ensure that you are eating pesticide-free produce.

Purchase organic fruits and vegetables. 

To limit your overall exposure to pesticides, commit to buying only organic fruits and vegetables. Organic produce costs a bit more than commercially sprayed fruits and vegetables, but the added cost is worth it if you wish to stay healthy.

Take note of the fruits and vegetables included in both lists and buy organic produce to limit your exposure to pesticides and other harmful chemicals.

Sources include:

GoodHousekeeping.com

EWG.com

BestPlants.com

Originally posted: https://www.naturalnews.com/2019-04-15-dirty-dozen-list-fruits-and-vegetables-contaminated-with-pesticide-residue.html

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A peek behind the (toxic) curtain: Here’s why glyphosate is sprayed on food crops before harvest

glyphosateNow that two juries have named Monsanto’s top weedkiller, Roundup, as a “substantial factor” in causing cancer in at least two people, concerns about current farming practices are on the rise. The food industry has a dirty little secret they’ve been hiding for many years: Farmers sometimes use Roundup for off-label purposes — and by doing so, they are putting public health at risk. Shocking research published by Environmental Sciences Europe describes the ways in which many grain farmers now use Roundup to expedite the harvesting process — and how they contaminate their crops in the process.

Given the groundbreaking court cases we’ve seen taken up against Monsanto and their toxic herbicide in the last year, the fact that farmers are spraying crops with Roundup a week before harvest is highly alarming. Research from the Environmental Working Group (EWG) has shown that a striking majority of cereals, snack bars and other grain-based foods are tainted with glyphosate residue. Many of these foods are positioned as snack options for children — but they’re more poison than they are healthy.

Glyphosate and harvest season

Glyphosate use has been on the rise since the 1970s, but most of the 1.6 billion kilograms used on crops has been sprayed within the last 10 years. Research published in 2016 by Charles M. Benbrook shows that there have been many disturbing changes in glyphosate usage since it first hit the market over forty years ago. He writes that “no pesticide has come remotely close to such intensive and widespread use,” — a fact that is most unsettling, given the grievous health effects glyphosate formulations are now known to cause.

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Waking Times reports that research led by Benbrook indicates the practice of using glyphosate to dry out, or “desiccate,” wheat crops first began in 1980’s Scotland.

Via the Waking Times:

Farmers there often had trouble getting wheat and barley to dry evenly so they can start harvesting. So they came up with the idea to kill the crop (with glyphosate) one to two weeks before harvest to accelerate the drying down of the grain.

Benbrook’s 2016 paper notes that the practice of using glyphosate as a desiccant first started gaining popularity in the United States in the mid-2000s. So much glyphosate is applied to our crops, regulatory agencies have drastically altered tolerance levels to accommodate increases in herbicide spraying.

Benbrook writes:

Because such applications occur within days of harvest, they result in much higher residues in the harvested foodstuffs [42]. To cover such residues, Monsanto and other glyphosate registrants have requested, and generally been granted, substantial increases in glyphosate tolerance levels in several crops, as well as in the animal forages derived from such crops.

In the EU, the expected increases in glyphosate residues from expanded spraying practices were so large that many countries have banned “harvest aid” herbicide applications. In the U.S., they simply raised the threshold.

Glyphosate is dangerous

In the last year, two people have taken Monsanto to court over allegations that glyphosate — the star ingredient of Roundup — causes cancer. And in both cases, the jury has decided in favor of the plaintiffs, concluding that the herbicide was a “substantial factor” in their illnesses.

The World Health Organization has named glyphosate as a probable carcinogen — and there is a mountain of independent science which clearly demonstrates the potential risk it poses to human health.

More, scientists are now admitting that it is impossible for them (or pesticide manufacturers) to truly predict the effects their products will have in real life. There is little to no data on what happens when pesticides interact with each other, for example — even though almost all conventionally grown crops will contain traces of more than one chemical. Across the board, safety testing on pesticides is woefully lacking.

Glyphosate isn’t just a nuisance, it’s a major health hazard. Learn more about the dangers of agrichemicals at Pesticides.news.

Sources for this article include:

WakingTimes.com

SpringerOpen.com

NBCNews.com

Originally posted: https://www.naturalnews.com/2019-04-07-heres-why-glyphosate-is-sprayed-on-food-crops.html
Author:  

Latest FDA Pesticide Monitoring Report reveals that nearly 50% of food samples contain pesticide “residues”

RoundUpThe Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Annual Pesticide Report for 2016 found pesticide “residues” in nearly 50 percent of the samples that the agency targeted across the United States and abroad. Six percent of the samples “violated” tolerable pesticide residue amounts.

The FDA tests for over 700 different pesticides and industrial compounds in both domestic and imported food products and agricultural commodities. The agency targets products that are most likely to contain pesticide residues, especially in imported goods. For 2016, the FDA tested 7,413 samples, which included 6,946 human foods and 467 animal foods. There were no pesticide residues detected at all in 52.9 percent of the domestic samples. While 99 percent of the domestic products complied with pesticide tolerance levels, 90 percent of human import foods did not. Almost half of the samples contained pesticide residues (47.1 %) and over 400 of the samples violated tolerable pesticide residue amounts established by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Who makes up the pesticide tolerance levels and why do they vary from one food to the next?

According to the EPA’s Code of Federal Regulations, tolerances are expressed in terms of parts by weight of the pesticide chemical per one million parts by weight of the raw agricultural commodity. The FDA’s “Pesticide Analytical Manual” details the analytical methods that are used to determine whether raw agricultural commodities are in compliance with the established tolerances. The question is: How are pesticide tolerance levels configured?

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If the toxicology of a specific pesticide has been firmly established, then why is there such great disparity in the allowable tolerance residue from one commodity to the next? For example, in section 180.364, the tolerance level for glyphosate in asparagus is .5 parts per million (ppm). The tolerance level for glyphosate in carrots is ten times greater (5ppm). The tolerance residue level for barley is even more lenient (30ppm). For corn, the EPA tolerates 100ppm glyphosate, and for animal feed, the tolerance level is 800 times greater than asparagus (400ppm). How are the tolerance levels established in the first place? Are these tolerance levels adjusted per crop just to accommodate the demand for pesticide use? Why is .5ppm the tolerance level in one food but suddenly this same pesticide is safe at a concentration 800 times that level in another commodity? If the dose makes the poison, why is there such variance in allowable residue levels from one crop to the next?

Glyphosate is pervasive in corn and soybean samples, but no samples exceeded “tolerance residue” levels

In the 274 corn sample analyzed, 173 tested positive for glyphosate residues, but none of the measurements surpassed the EPA’s tolerance level for the herbicide. Out of the 267 soybeans samples, 178 tested positive for glyphosate residues, but there were no violations. The good news: There was no glyphosate residue detected in milk and egg samples. For a full list of pesticides detected, check out page 36-37 of the FDA’s Annual Pesticide Report. The findings from the report include:

The domestic violations occurred primarily in vegetables (3%), where mis-application, over-application and pesticide cross contamination occurs. Domestic grains were generally cleaner than imported grains. Out of 70 honey samples, only one sample was “violative.” All the other animal-derived ingredients were within tolerable levels, including venison, rabbit, elk, bison, milk, and eggs. Out of 177 whole grain and seed samples, two were “violative.” One soybean sample contained 2,4D pesticide greater than the tolerable level.

Imported food samples were more likely to violate the tolerable residue levels (9.8%) compared to domestic samples (.9%). Most of the foreign violations occurred in grains (19.7%) followed by vegetables (10.1%) and fruits (6.5%). There were no violations for dairy/eggs and minimal violations in fish (.7%). The import commodities of greatest concern include rice, with a violation rate of 29.7%. The greatest offenders were prickle pears, onions, leeks, papaya, mushrooms, cashews, spinach, and wheat gluten.

Still, the most important question remains: How are tolerance levels established for each pesticide and why do the levels vary from one food to the next? Also, what are the toxicological effects of intermixing pesticides? And finally, how does human DNA interact with these chemical residues over time, due to repeated exposure?

For more on environmental and human health protection, visit EPA.News.

Sources include:

ScientificAmerican.com

FDA.gov

GovInfo.gov

Originally posted: https://www.naturalnews.com/2019-04-01-fda-pesticide-monitoring-report-food-samples-pesticides.html
Author: 

Pesticide Exposure Changes Bees’ Genes

pesticideBy Olivia Rosane

A new study has found that exposure to certain pesticides can alter bees’ genes, leading researchers to call for tougher regulations on the widely-used chemicals.

The study, published Wednesday in Molecular Ecology, looked at the impact of two neonicotinoid pesticides on bumblebee populations and found that they impacted genes involved in a variety of important biological processes.

“Governments had approved what they thought were ‘safe’ levels but pesticides intoxicate many pollinators, reducing their dexterity and cognition and ultimately survival,” lead study author Dr. Yannick Wurm of Queen Mary’s School of Biological and Chemical Sciences said in a press release. “This is a major risk because pollinators are declining worldwide yet are essential for maintaining the stability of the ecosystem and for pollinating crops.”

Previous studies had looked at the impact of neonicotinoids on the behaviors of bees, showing that exposure impaired their ability to forage and develop colonies. But this study, conducted by researchers at Queen Mary University of London and Imperial College London, focused on how those impacts occur on the molecular level.

“Our work reveals that neurotoxic pesticides not only directly target the cells of the nervous system, but also indirectly affect the normal activity of the exposed organism’s genes,” study author Dr. Richard Gill of the Department of Life Sciences at Imperial College London said in a press release.

The researchers studied the impact of realistic concentrations of two neonicotinoids on bumblebees: clothianidin and imidacloprid. They found that clothianidin had a stronger effect and that queens and workers were impacted differently. Clothianidin exposure altered the activity levels of 55 worker genes, making 31 more active and the rest less active.

“This could indicate that their bodies are reorienting resources to try to detoxify, which the researchers suspect is what some of the genes are doing. For other genes, the changes could represent the intermediate effects of intoxication that lead to affected behavior,” the Queen Mary press release explained.

For queens, 17 genes saw their activity levels altered, with 16 becoming more active.

While neonicotinoids were banned in the EU in 2018, they are still widely used elsewhere.

The researchers thought that the study mechanism could be used to assess the specific impact of pesticides on other pollinators.

“We examined the effects of two pesticides on one species of bumblebee. But hundreds of pesticides are authorised, and their effects are likely to substantially differ across the 200,000 pollinating insect species which also include other bees, wasps, flies, moths, and butterflies,” first study author Dr. Joe Colgan of Queen Mary University said.

The study comes about a month after another study warned that insect populations around the world are in grave danger, and the widespread use of pesticides is one of the main reasons why.

Environmentally-Caused Disease Crisis? Pesticide Damage to DNA Found ‘Programmed’ Into Future…

Epigenetics shows how pesticide damage to DNA can be “programmed” into future generations.

ecowatch.com

This article was sourced from Waking Times

Biologists: Pesticide regulations designed to protect bees are failing

pesticidesBees, like many of the world’s insects, are in crisis, and their numbers are dwindling at an alarming rate. At the same time, the world’s population – and its reliance on insect-pollinated crops – continues to grow at an equally alarming pace. The bees might be in crisis right now, but pretty soon it will be humans who are in really serious trouble.

While the world’s governments have started to wake up to the dangers pesticides pose to honeybees, a series of studies by the University of Guelph, published in the journal Environmental Entomology recently, warns that these measures are not enough. They also warn that other species of bees, including bumblebees and solitary bees, are at least as important as the honeybee when it comes to the pollination of food, and yet these species have, for the most part, been virtually ignored in terms of pesticide risk assessment measures. (Related: As global insect population plunges toward total ecological collapse, the corporate-run media still censors the truth about GMOs and pesticides.)

Protecting wild pollinators “more important now than ever before”

The studies were based on a group of workshops held in Canada in 2017, which were attended by 40 bee researchers from a variety of educational institutes, as well as representatives of regulatory agencies and agrochemical companies.

Science Daily reported that the research confirmed that habitat loss, pathogens and widespread pesticide use continue to have a dire impact on insect populations worldwide. And this is true, not just of honeybees, but of all bees as well as many other types of insects.

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“There is evidence that our dependency on insect-pollinated crops is increasing and will continue to do so as the global population rises,” study co-author Professor Nigel Raine told Science Daily. “With growing demands for crop pollination outstripping increases in honeybee stocks, protecting wild pollinators is more important now than ever before. Honeybees alone simply cannot deliver the crop pollination services we need.”

While governments have focused their efforts on protecting honeybees, Raine warns that wild bees are even more important to food pollination than farmed bees. Very few studies have focused exclusively on the effects of pesticides on adult and larval wild bees when they are exposed to these chemicals through their food sources or the soil they live in.

The scientists involved in the latest research are particularly concerned about the effects of pesticides on bumblebees. Bumblebee queens, for example, have a different life cycle to honeybee queens, and this makes them experience more contact with pesticides in the course of their lifespans.

“That’s a critical difference because the loss of a single bumblebee queen translates into the loss of the colony that she would have produced. It’s one queen, but it’s a whole colony at risk,” noted Angela Gradish, one of the study’s lead authors.

Both honeybees and bumblebees forage on many different types of flowering plants. The bumblebee is at greater risk of pesticide exposure, however, because it is larger and carries more pollen around between plants. It also forages when there is less light and when weather is cooler, which is not typical of honeybees.

The massive bee and insect crisis gets far less coverage in the mainstream media than the unsubstantiated theory of global warming. In the meantime, while the problem is largely ignored, pollinators continue to die off at an alarming rate. Governments around the globe need to step in quickly and take decisive steps to halt the use of pesticides in conventional farming. If they do not, the future of our own species will begin to look as bleak as that of the world’s insects.

Learn more at Pesticides.news.

Sources include:

ScienceDaily.com

NaturalNews.com

Originally posted: https://www.naturalnews.com/2019-02-25-biologists-pesticide-regulations-designed-to-protect-bees-are-failing.html

Author: 

Study shows Mexican marigold can be used as a natural herbicide

marigoldChemical herbicides often cause more harm than good, especially since they can pollute farm soil and water sources. These substances can also be harmful to the health of the people who handle them. To address this concern, a team of researchers conducted a study to determine if Mexican marigolds (Tagetes erecta L.) can be used to create a natural alternative to chemical herbicides.

The study was published in the journal Industrial Crops and Products.

Mexican marigold essential oil as a pre- and post-emergent herbicide

Various studies have analyzed plant-derived substances like essential oils, which are some of the most effective natural alternatives to chemical herbicides. Plant-derived substances are often safe to use, making them a popular choice when it comes to eco-friendly options to harmful chemical solutions. (Related: Scientists working to understand the defensive properties of lavender oil, hoping to develop natural pesticides.)

In the study, researchers analyzed the chemical composition of essential oil extracted from Mexican marigolds. They tested the herbicidal activities of the essential oil, which was used as a pre-and post-emergent herbicide on cockspur grass (Echinochloa cruss-galli).

The researchers extracted essential oil from Mexican marigolds, and the final product was analyzed using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry to determine its chemical composition. Based on the test results, the oil contained relatively high amounts of monoterpenes like:

  • Piperitone (17.12 percent)
  • Piperitenone (10.46 percent)
  • Ocimene (8.59 percent)

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The essential oil also contained sesquiterpenoids, such as neophytadiene (16.18 percent) and caryophyllene (11.10 percent).

Before testing, the researchers formulated the essential oil as an emulsifiable concentrate (EC-EO) for herbicidal applications. The team also used Petri dish bioassay for EC-EO concentrations to verify the seed germination and seedling growth of the cockspur grass. The bioassay results showed that the EC-EO successfully prevented the germination and growth of cockspur grass seeds through the inhibition of alpha-amylase activity.

The researchers also assessed the post-emergence application of EC-EOs by applying the concentrate to 21-day-old cockspur grass plants. After the plants were exposed to the concentrate, their leaves dried out and wilted.

Applying greater concentrations of the Mexican marigold essential oil could reduce the chlorophyll a, b, and carotenoid content of the cockspur grass. The researchers believe that this means EC-EO can be used to stop photosynthetic metabolism. They added that the concentrate reduced membrane integrity and increased thiobarbituric acid reactive substances in the grass.

Based on the findings, researchers concluded that the phytotoxic compounds in Mexican marigolds could potentially be used to develop safe and effective natural herbicides for weed control.

Fast facts on Mexican marigolds

The Mexican marigold is also called the African marigold, Aztec marigold, Big marigold, or American marigold.

  • The flowering plant belongs to the family Asteraceae.
  • The Mexican marigold can produce orange or yellow blossoms during early summer, early fall, late summer, late spring, and mid-summer.
  • The plant can grow up to 1 m tall (three feet and three inches) by 0.4 m (one foot and four inches) at a medium rate.
  • The Mexican marigold, which flowers in July, is a hermaphrodite species, which means it has both male and female organs. It is pollinated by insects.
  • The plant will thrive in well-drained soil, and it can grow in heavy clay soil. The Mexican marigold can’t grow in the shade, and it prefers dry or moist soil.
  • Grown in cultivated beds, the petals of some varieties of the plant produce a yellow dye that can be used as a saffron substitute for coloring and flavoring foods.

Browse other articles about research findings on natural alternatives to herbicides at GreenLivingNews.com.

Sources include:

Science.news

ScienceDirect.com

PFAF.org

Originally published: https://www.naturalnews.com/2019-01-17-mexican-marigold-as-a-natural-herbicide.html
Author: 

Switch to an organic diet and reduce your pesticide intake by as much as 90%

organic dietIf you’re still on the fence on whether you should be eating organic food, researchers from Australia have you covered: In a study, they found that switching to an organic diet can reduce the body’s pesticide levels by as much as 90 percent.

The study, led by RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia, revealed that people who adopted an organic diet have seen a significant drop in pesticide exposure a week in their diet. In the study, researchers took urine samples from participants who were fed both an organic and a non-organic diet and looked for the presence of dialkyl phosphates, a class of compounds the body produces as it tries to break down organophosphate pesticides.

Organophosphate pesticides are widely used in commercial agriculture to control pests in fruits and vegetables, but they can also be found in flea and tick collars, shampoos, and powders for pets; treatments for head lice; and, no pest strips and pest control products for gardens. Despite its widespread usage, direct exposure to these pesticides carry severe health risks, especially for pregnant women. In addition, earlier studies have found that ingesting fruits and vegetables that have residual amounts of pesticides like organophosphates can lead to diminished IQs in children, as well as other dietary risks. Other studies have shown that children with high levels of residual pesticides in their bodies are more likely to have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, known as ADHD.

Pesticides have also been linked to certain types of cancer, with multiple studies identifying both direct and residual exposures as a risk factor for environmentally induced cancer. In particular, organophosphate pesticides can increase the risk of breast cancer, where it can be transferred to babies through breast milk.

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Unfortunately, much of the fruits are vegetables lined up in stores are riddled in pesticides. In its latest Dirty Dozen report, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) found conventionally grown strawberries to have the highest levels of pesticide residues, compared to other fruits and vegetables. (Related: Strawberries are the most pesticide-ridden crop you can eat.)

Other offenders include spinach, which contains the neurotoxic insecticide permethrin; peaches, where the EWG found four pesticide residues, on average; and, grapes, which tested positive residues in 96 percent of its samples.

Going organic without breaking the bank

One of the common misconceptions with organic food is that it’s more expensive than its conventionally grown counterparts. In reality, it takes a few simple tips to transition into an organic diet without having to spend more. (h/t to WholeLifestyleNutrition.com.)

  • Go to your local farmers markets. People looking to switch to an organic diet need not look any further than their local market: It’s grown locally, and those who are concerned with how the crops were tended can directly ask the farmers themselves.
  • Buy in bulk. You’re bound to get a better discount when you buy more.
  • Get produce that are in season. Organic fruits and vegetables are cheaper when they’re in season. For instance, organic strawberries are just under $4 a pound in the spring — a far cry from their $8 a pound price tag during the winter months.
  • Don’t be afraid to compare prices. Exploring the market is a great way to learn which shops have better deals than others.
  • Plan ahead. Create a meal plan based on in-season produce to save up on cost.
  • Grow your own. Planting and growing your own organic food can help you save money in the long run.
  • Preserve foods that are in season. Freezing and canning are just some of the ways to preserve fruits and vegetables, especially for the winter.
  • Transition gradually. For most people, it takes time to switch to an organic diet — and that’s all right. It’s best to start with foods that have the highest amounts of pesticide residues (read the EWG’s Dirty Dozen Report here), then move to those that have lower amounts of pesticide residue.

Learn more about the many benefits of organic foods by following Organics.news today.

Sources include:

REAL.video

LinkingHub.Elsevier.com

BioMonitoring.ca.gov [PDF]

ScienceNews.org

BeyondPesticides.org

TheEpochTimes.com

WholeLifestyleNutrition.com

EWG.org

Originally posted: https://www.naturalnews.com/2018-10-08-switch-to-an-organic-diet-and-reduce-your-pesticide-intake.html
Author: 

Glyphosate is Clearly Carcinogenic – and Monsanto Hid The Evidence

carcinogenicBy Dr. Joseph Mercola

Lead Trial Counsel Reveals Evidence That Led to Historic Win Against Monsanto

Last month, a jury ruled in favor of plaintiff Dewayne Johnson1,2,3,4,5 in a truly historic case against Monsanto. Mr. Johnson — the first of over 8,000 cases pending against the infamous chemical company which has since been bought by Bayer AG6,7 — claimed Monsanto’s Roundup caused his Non-Hodgkin lymphoma. According to the landmark ruling, Monsanto “acted with malice or oppression” and was responsible for “negligent failure” by not warning consumers about the carcinogenicity of this pernicious weed killer. Monsanto has been ordered to pay $289 million in damages to Johnson.

In The Highwire video featured below, medical journalist Del Bigtree takes a deep dive into this groundbreaking win, revealing evidence presented to the jury — email correspondence and corporate documents that created a comprehensive narrative of corporate malfeasance and collusion with U.S. regulatory agencies — ultimately leading the jury to give Johnson a quarter of a billion dollars in damages.

Summary of Monsanto’s Battle to Squash Evidence of Carcinogenicity

The beginning of the end for Monsanto really began in 2015, when the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), the cancer research arm of the World Health Organization (WHO) and the “gold standard” in carcinogenicity research, reclassified glyphosate as a “probable human carcinogen.”8,9

This determination was based on evidence showing the popular weed killer can cause Non-Hodgkin lymphoma and lung cancer in humans, along with “convincing evidence” it can cause cancer in animals. In response, Monsanto launched an all-out attack on IARC and its researchers, and even lobbied to strip IARC of its U.S. funding.

Then, in January 2017, the American Chemistry Council, of which Monsanto is a member, went on to form a front group called Campaign for Accuracy in Public Health Research,10 the express purpose of which is to discredit the IARC and seek to reform the IARC Monographs Program, which evaluates and determines the carcinogenicity of chemicals.11 As reported by the Union of Concerned Scientists on July 11, 2018:12

“A rider [was added to] the House version of the HHS [Department of Health and Human Services] appropriations bill that would prevent the National Institutes of Health from lending any financial support to IARC unless it agrees to push for reforms at IARC that have been called for by [industry ally U.S. Rep.] Lamar Smith and the House Science Committee at the bequest of the chemical industry.”

Monsanto Fought — and Lost — Proposition 65 Cancer Warning Label

Following the IARC’s determination that glyphosate is probably carcinogenic to humans in 2015, California’s Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) announced it intended to list glyphosate as a chemical known to cause cancer under Proposition 65, which requires consumer products with potential cancer-causing ingredients to bear warning labels.

Monsanto filed formal comments with OEHHA saying the plan to list glyphosate as a carcinogen should be withdrawn. When OEHHA refused to cave, Monsanto sued OEHHA in January 2016 to stop the glyphosate/cancer classification. OEHHA filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit and a Fresno, California, superior court judge ruled on their behalf in February 2017.

Alas, Monsanto continued filing legal appeals to block the cancer warning from being implemented. In its latest attempt, Monsanto tried to have a provision of the law removed that allows the OEHHA from taking scientific findings from outside experts — such as the IARC — into consideration.

Mere days after Johnson’s verdict, Monsanto lost against California yet again. As reported by Sustainable Pulse:13

“This decision leaves in place lower court decisions upholding a provision of the voter-approved initiative that allows outside expert scientific findings to be considered when adding chemicals to the public list of carcinogens … ‘Monsanto doesn’t have the right to decide which scientific experts are permitted to inform the public about cancer-causing chemicals.

By refusing to consider this case, the Supreme Court has allowed Proposition 65 to keep working the way voters intended when the initiative was passed in 1986,’ said Avinash Kar, senior attorney with the Natural Resources Defense Council.”

This is another piece of good news, as this means California will be able to require Roundup and other glyphosate-containing products to bear a cancer warning label, and since companies rarely want to go through the extra work of making different product labels for different states, this likely means all Americans will finally be informed of the fact that Roundup is carcinogenic.

Evidence Shows EPA Colluded With Monsanto to Hide Evidence of Carcinogenicity

Throughout its legal battles, Monsanto has relied heavily on evidence by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) which, despite IARC findings, has continued to maintain that glyphosate is probably not carcinogenic to humans.

However, internal documents obtained during the discovery process of Johnson’s case revealed the EPA colluded with Monsanto to protect the company’s interests — actually manipulating and preventing key investigations into glyphosate’s cancer-causing potential. You can review key documents from this case on the U.S. Right to Know website.14

A 2017 Spiegel article15 also delves into some of this damning evidence, which includes correspondence that clearly reveals Monsanto knew Roundup had safety problems, and in more ways than one:

“The Monsanto researchers also behaved irresponsibly when it comes to the question of Roundup’s absorption into the body,” Spiegel writes. “In their own animal experiments back in 2002, the company’s experts discovered that ‘between 5 and 10 percent’ of the substance penetrated the skin of rats.

The rate was much higher than expected and the result had the potential to ‘blow’ the ‘Roundup risk evaluations,’ reads one email. As a consequence, the author of the email wrote: ‘We decided thus to STOP the study.’ Laboratory animals also absorbed more Roundup ingredients through the digestive tract than had been hoped for.

Above all, the Monsanto papers show that the experts were very aware of a fact that is often lost in the public debate: In addition to glyphosate, herbicides like Roundup contain other dangerous chemicals that are necessary to enable the active ingredient to penetrate hard plant walls, among other things. These ingredients are often more harmful than the active ingredient on its own.”

Summary of Johnson’s Case

In the video featured below, Del Bigtree interviews Baum Hedlund attorney Brent Wisner, lead trial counsel for Johnson and thousands of other plaintiffs who believe their Non-Hodgkin lymphoma — a type of cancer that starts in your white blood cells (lymphocytes), which are part of your immune system — was caused by Roundup exposure.

More than 500 of these cases are currently pending in a multidistrict litigation (MDL) with the U.S. District Court in San Francisco.16 While the MDL procedure is similar to a class-action suit in that it consolidates pretrial proceedings, each case will get its own jury trial, and the outcomes will vary depending on the strength of the evidence in any given case.

Johnson’s lawsuit was filed in state court rather than through an MDL and was granted an expedited trial due to the fact that he’s nearing death.17,18,19 In California, if the plaintiff dies, no punitive damages can be awarded, so Johnson agreed to be the first one to take Monsanto on.

Johnson, a 46-year-old husband and father of two, sprayed an estimated 150 gallons of Roundup 20 to 40 times per year while working as a groundskeeper for the Benicia school district in California, from 2012 through late 2015.20

Johnson was diagnosed with a rare and deadly form of Non-Hodgkin lymphoma called mycosis fungoides in August 2014. He told his doctor the rash he’d developed that summer would worsen after exposure to the herbicide. His lawsuit, filed in 2016 after he became too ill to work, accused Monsanto of hiding the health hazards of Roundup.

His court case, presided by Superior Court Judge Suzanne Ramos Bolanos, began June 18, 2018, and ended August 10 with a ruling in his favor.21 As mentioned, the jury awarded Johnson $289 million in damages — an amount that effectively wipes out Monsanto’s reserve fund for environmental and litigation liability, which according to Bloomberg22 totaled $277 million as of August 2018.

Robert F. Kennedy Jr. on Monsanto’s Corporate Culture and Toxic Legacy

Wisner is also joined by co-counsel Robert F. Kennedy Jr., who has been an environmental lawyer for 30 years, who commented on Monsanto’s “antidemocratic and antihumanistic” corporate ways, saying:

“We really were up against an industry that has employed all of the techniques pioneered by the tobacco industry.

Over 60 years, Big Tobacco killed 1 out of every 5 of its customers who used its products as directed, was able to avoid any kind of regulatory interference, because it pioneered these techniques of ghostwriting science, compromising science, corrupting public officials, capturing the agencies that are supposed to protect Americans from pollution, and Monsanto really was part of the group that pioneered those techniques — and also of using ad hominem attacks.

Monsanto is the same company that was making DDT and masterminded and orchestrated the attack on Rachael Carson … [they] tried to personally destroy her, as she died of cancer. On agent orange, it led the fight to deny rights and deny compensation to tens of thousands of American veterans who had been exposed in Vietnam to this terrible chemical.

I’ve been suing one of Monsanto’s chemicals for 35 years, PCBs, which Monsanto is the only producer of. It contaminated the Hudson River. In more recent years, I’ve brought a series of lawsuits against Monsanto because of the PCBs put into caulking in American schools. Half the schools built between 1950 and 1977 have calking in their windows filled with PCBs.

Monsanto knew PCB was carcinogenic and an endocrine disruptor and children should never be exposed to it. And it knew PCB was about to be heavily regulated if it got banned. So, it ordered all of its sales forces to … [get rid of it by selling] it for caulking for schools. This is the mentality of a very corrupt corporate culture.”

Trial Counsels Discuss the Evidence Against Monsanto

As noted by Kennedy, until now, Monsanto has had a reputation of being untouchable. Wisner finally broke the magic spell with his phenomenal ability to create a comprehensive narrative, showing exactly how Monsanto has been able to get away with murder, and producing the evidence needed to support that narrative.

As mentioned, Wisner was able to show corporate correspondence and documents that clearly discussed Monsanto’s inability to prove Roundup is noncarcinogenic. In fact, Monsanto toxicologist Donna Farmer, Ph.D., who in 2016 appeared on the TV show “The Doctors” defending the safety of Roundup, years earlier had written an email stating:

“The terms glyphosate and Roundup cannot be used interchangeably, nor can you use “Roundup” for all glyphosate-based herbicides anymore. For example, you cannot say that Roundup is not a carcinogen … we have not done the necessary testing on the formulation to make that statement.”

Indeed, as Wisner notes, Roundup is not just glyphosate. It also contains a number of surfactants to solubilize it and other chemicals, and the synergistic action between all of these chemicals has actually been shown to be far more toxic than glyphosate alone.

This was recently confirmed in tests23 conducted by the U.S. National Toxicology Program (NTP). According to the NTP’s summary of the results, glyphosate formulations significantly alter the viability of human cells by disrupting the functionality of cell membranes. In layman’s terms, Roundup kills human cells.

Recent research24,25 by the highly respected Ramazzini Institute in Italy also reveals daily ingestion of glyphosate at the acceptable daily dietary exposure level set by the EPA alters sexual development in rats, produces changes in the intestinal microbiome, and exhibits genotoxic effects.

Wisner made every effort to get Farmer to testify. Not only did she evade being served, when they were finally able to catch her, Monsanto “fought tooth and nail” to prevent her from taking the stand. They ultimately won, and Wisner was not able to get her to testify. Still, email correspondence to and from Farmer was revealing enough.

Success Became Monsanto’s Downfall

According to Kennedy and Wisner, the extreme success of Roundup is ultimately what became its downfall. Roundup is now the most widely used agricultural chemical in the history of the world, and its sheer pervasiveness led to increased scientific investigation. With that increased scrutiny by independent researchers, more and more evidence of harm was published.

Secondly, in 2005 Monsanto started recommending the off-label use of Roundup as a desiccant on non-GMO grains. Essentially, by spraying Roundup on the grain right before harvest, it dries the grain, making it easier to harvest and allows the farmer greater profits, as they’re penalized when grain contains moisture. The greater the moisture content of the grain at sale, the lower the price they get.

As a result of this successful campaign, farmers began spraying Roundup directly on food preharvest, whereas previously it was primarily used as weed control. This is why we’re now finding glyphosate in just about everything — it’s been found in every processed food tested, in air samples, rain samples, municipal water supplies, soil samples, breast milk and urine.

Related reading: Toxic Weed Killer Glyphosate Found in Most Foods Sold in the U.S.

According to Bigtree, two recent studies even revealed the presence of glyphosate in several vaccines, including the pneumococcal, Tdap, hepatitis B (which is injected on the day of birth), influenza and MMR. The MMR vaccine had the highest amounts at 0.8 parts of glyphosate per billion.

Ironically, one of Farmer’s talking points during her appearance on “The Doctors” was that IARC was looking at the effects of injected glyphosate, which is not how it’s used. Yet now we’re finding vaccines are contaminated with glyphosate, and is in fact injected directly into the bodies of young children.

Related reading: Monsanto Strikes Again — Tests Confirm Most Vaccines Contain Glyphosate Herbicide

Kennedy notes the majority of glyphosate used since its inception has actually been used in the last five years alone. And, as contamination has been detected, concern about its safety has been increasingly strengthened. These factors are ultimately what allowed Wisner to present such a compelling case against Monsanto.

Public Health Impact of Roundup is Likely to be Enormous

Continue reading….

This Is Why Glyphosate Is Sprayed On Crops Right Before Harvest

glyphosateMost people do not realize how much pesticide is actually sprayed on the food they ingest before it makes its way to their plate. While you might not realize that pesticides are sprayed all over many crops just before harvest, it is something you need to make yourself aware of.

Glyphosate is sprayed all over all kinds of crops before harvest, and as you may know, is the main ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup. Roundup is easily the world’s most well known and well-used weed killer. It is used on things like wheat, oats, and so forth. Glyphosate is not something we should be using at all, yet it is sprayed all over the things we eat, why is this?

Glyphosate is listed as a possible carcinogen and can cause a whole host of health issues for us all. There is a growing body of research against it and it has been linked with far more things than you could ever imagine. Not only does it cause damage to your DNA, it also causes birth defects.

Now, glyphosate is sprayed on crops because it allows the farmers to begin harvesting sooner. It speeds up the drying process and also keeps it drying evenly. There has been a huge increase in the use of glyphosate in the past ten years. This growing as things like GMO corn and so forth are expanding rapidly. Through killing their crops with glyphosate farmers are able to accelerate things.

This application is known as the pre-harvest roundup and is carried out on many both conventional and industrial farms. It is something we’ve been doing since around the 1980s and it’s not dying off anytime soon. This is known as desiccation.

While this does put less strain on equipment and make things go over a little easier and more quickly for the farmers, when it comes to the consumer’s things are a bit fishy. Considering several countries in the EU have banned glyphosate altogether, should we really be eating food that is sprayed with it?

What do you think about all of this? Do you think it is something we should be doing or do you think it’s a dangerous corner to cut for convenience? Feel free to check out the video below for more information on glyphosate.

Originally posted: https://awarenessact.com/this-is-why-glyphosate-is-sprayed-on-crops-right-before-harvest/

Poisoning Our Children: The Parent’s Guide to the Myths of Safe Pesticides

By Dr. Joseph Mercola

In a clear conflict of interest, chemical industry regulators make decisions on the safety of poisons in our food and environment based on data provided by the company selling the toxin. And while there is no safety testing done specifically for children, studies show there is no level of pesticide exposure that is actually safe for them, either.

In the U.S., there are about 80,000 registered chemicals. Of these, only a few hundred are actually tested for safety, and even that testing is considered inadequate by most toxicologists. Part of the problem is that most chemicals are tested in isolation. In real world application, however, most chemicals are combined with others, and the few studies done on synergetic effects reveal even nontoxic chemicals can become toxic when mixed together.

While there are many sources of chemical exposure, our food is a significant one, as most conventionally farmed foods are sprayed with pesticides. The chemical industry would have you believe pesticide residues on food is of no major concern.

Others vehemently disagree. To help parents sort out truth from myth, André Leu, former president of International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM) and current international director of Regeneration International, wrote “Poisoning Our Children: The Parent’s Guide to the Myths of Safe Pesticides.”

In 2014, I interviewed him about his first book, “The Myths of Safe Pesticides,” which reveals the vacuum of scientific evidence for the safety of pesticides. As noted by Leu, the safety of pesticides is “based on data-free assumptions.”

“When I was researching data, I realized there’s absolutely no scientific evidence at all about the safety of pesticides and other chemicals for our children. Yet, we have hundreds of scientific studies showing the damage that the smallest amount of pesticides can do. The fact is the science shows there’s absolutely no safe level of these chemicals for children. I think it’s very important for parents to learn about it and be aware of what the science says.”

How Chemical Industry Manipulates Data to Suppress Concerns

A key argument in his book is that the agricultural industry and global chemical industry have manipulated the system to control and suppress safety concerns. The process is called “regulatory capture.” This is where the industry actually captures the regulators, and the regulators now work for the industry instead of working for the public. A number of toxic industries have used the same playbook to achieve this aim, including the tobaccoasbestos, lead and pesticide industries.

Part and parcel of this process is the revolving door between government and industry, where regulators are given high-paying jobs in the industry, and industry executives get hired as senior managers in regulatory agencies such as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), where they start approving the products of their former company. “That is really a form of corruption,” Leu says, “But we see this everywhere around the world. In every country I look at, the regulators are owned by the industry.”

The tobacco industry really perfected the regulatory capture strategy, and other industries have boldly followed in its footsteps. Take lead, for example. It’s now widely acknowledged that lead is a toxin that causes brain damage and lowers IQ. This recognition was largely the result of the tireless efforts of Clair Patterson, Ph.D., a geochemist who took on the oil companies, exposed the fraud being committed and pushed to get lead removed from gasoline. You can read more about this in “The Heroes Who Sunk Lead.”

It’s a classic example of how dangerous chemicals and metals can get introduced into the environment, primarily as the result of benefiting some large corporate infrastructure. It’s also an inspiring example of how a single individual can change the whole system and protect millions from unnecessary harm.

Toxic Limits Based on Assumptions

Aside from regulatory capture, another strategy used by the chemical industry is to manipulate the legal limits for the toxin in question. This is crucial, because if you rig the game so that the limit is higher than it should be, the industry can contaminate the environment without taking a financial hit or having to make any changes to the product or sales strategy.

Part of manipulating the safety limits involve suppressing independent data that raise red flags. “There are lots of independent scientists and researchers. They publish in scientific journals. This is regarded as the gold standard in research. But this evidence gets suppressed,” Leu says.

Instead, regulators take into account primarily studies submitted by the corporations themselves, and most of these studies are confidential, so the public — as well as other scientists and researchers — cannot access them. So, regulators make decisions on the safety of poisons in our food and environment based on data provided by the company selling the toxin, and no outsider can review that evidence.

“To me, that’s another sign of corruption,” Leu says. “If these were good studies, why are they frightened of a transparent and open system? Why don’t they publish them and allow independent scientists to peer review them if that’s the gold standard of science?”

The myth here, the general perception, is that we have objective federal regulatory agencies that do independent testing to validate the safety of the chemicals they permit. But that’s not the case at all. The regulatory agencies rarely do any independent testing. Instead, they make assumptions about safety and toxicity limits based on the confidential testing done by the chemical manufacturer.

There’s No Safe Limit for Any Pesticide for Children

As noted by Leu, when access to corporate studies are gained through freedom of information requests or legal discovery, most turn out to be of poor quality. “Most of them actually show a whole range of diseases and risks,” Leu says, leading many independent scientists to conclude the chemical in question is harmful and should be either severely restricted or banned altogether. Having extensively reviewed the science on pesticides, Leu believes the greatest threat is the hazard these chemicals pose for our children.

“There’s no specific testing done for children,” he says. “There’s absolutely no published scientific evidence to show any level of safety. On the other hand, studies show there is no lower level that is safe for children.

Children, when we talk about the unborn, the newborn and grown children up to puberty, they do not have the detoxification enzymes in their livers that we have as adults. Particularly for young children, that means they have no way of detoxifying even the smallest amount of a pesticide or a chemical.

The evidence shows that even small amounts, when children are exposed in the womb, through breastfeeding or at a young age, it severely affects the way they develop. It affects the nervous system, the hormone system and the reproductive system.

When you look at the science, there are so many areas that can be negatively affected by these small amounts. Unfortunately, a lot of these effects last a lifetime. And also, we know some are intergenerational. Those children’s grandchildren will be affected.”

Clinical Signs and Symptoms of Harm

Clinical signs and symptoms of pesticide exposure include malignancies and tumors. “If you look at the World Health Organization’s (WHO) figures on children’s cancers, they are skyrocketing, and we have good evidence linking back to small amounts of pesticides in food,” Leu says. Hormone disruption is another critical side effect.

Chemicals in really tiny amounts, parts per trillion, have an effect on fetal development, and can affect a child all through puberty and beyond. One part per trillion is the equivalent of one drop in three Olympic-sized swimming pools of water.

“These parts per trillion are significant in the normal development of a child, because at different times the hormones tell genes to come on and develop different parts of the body, like the reproductive system, arms, legs, eyes and the brain. If these signals are disrupted by chemicals that mimic hormones, that upsets this whole normal growth pattern. It’s called a programming event. It can affect them for the rest of their lives …

There’s one very good study done by Warren Porter and colleagues at the University of Wisconsin Madison, where they looked at the normal contamination of pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers in the drinking water in the Midwest. They found it caused severe development problems in baby rats and, of course, issues like thyroid problems, which is one of the master glands.

Another really important issue is the normal development of the nervous system. We know that many of these chemicals, such as glyphosate, actually stop the normal development of nerves in children, and the brain contains the greatest concentration of nerves …

The evidence shows diseases like attention-deficit hyperactive disorder, the autism spectrum of disorders, the bipolar schizophrenia spectrum — as well as anger management and a whole range of behavioral problems seen in children — go back to these very small quantities of pesticides in our food, air and water.”

Your Tap Water Likely Contains Dozens of Pesticides

Just how concerned do you need to be about these exposures? I recently conducted extensive toxicology testing on my tap water where I live in Florida. It was an eye-opening experience.

The results reveal more than 50 different chemicals in my water, ranging from 3 to 11 parts per trillion, including atacor, atrazine, lindane, chlordane, endrin, heptachlor, epoxide, simazine, toxifin, 2,4-D, dalapron, dinazeb, pentachlorophenol, carbofuran and oxymel. I also have 4,200 parts per trillion of glyphosate in my water, which is an insane amount, especially when you consider I use this water for my organic garden.

Every time I watered my garden, I was dousing my organic fruits and vegetables with glyphosate and a whole host of other pesticides Since then, I’ve added my whole-house water filtration system to the water for my plants. Indoors, I have a reverse osmosis system for my drinking water on top of that.

But what about everyone else in my community? What about families with young children, who use no filtration at all? Odds are you live in a community where pesticides are found in your water supply as well. I would strongly encourage you to get a water quality report from your local water authority, and take steps to purify your water before drinking, cooking and bathing in it, especially if you have young ones in the house.

Organic Matter in Your Soil Helps Prevent Pesticide Contamination

The good news is that the higher the quality of your soil, the better the soil can trap and break down pesticides, preventing them from contaminating your food. The key is to have high amounts of organic matter in your soil, which is one of the benefits of organic and biodynamic farming — it builds organic matter. Leu, who has done toxicology testing on regenerative and organic farm soils, says:

“Soil organic matter … sort of works like a buffer. It traps these chemicals. While these chemicals are in the environment, they actually get trapped in the organic matter. When we test [organic food] products, we find that the vast majority of them are actually free of these chemicals. We have good data on that. We also know that in these good agricultural systems, where we have good levels of organic matter, we have various soil microbes … [that] actually degrade the poisons.”

According to Leu, once you have about 3 percent or more carbon-based organic matter in your soil, with humus being the most important, pesticide contamination in your irrigation water becomes less of a concern as the microbes are now able to degrade the toxins.

Positive changes are often seen once you hit 1.5 percent. While this doesn’t sound like much, most agricultural soils around the world today have less than 1 percent organic matter. In many places, it’s as low as 0.5 to 0.6 percent, thanks to the overuse of agricultural chemicals, especially nitrogen fertilizers, which kill microbes and degrade the soil over time.

“Pesticides are synthetic organic molecules. They will bond to the organic matter and stay there. The plants take up nutrients through a process called ion exchange, and can actively select what they need.

They’re not passive. In conventional industrial agriculture, where they are force-fed water-soluble fertilizers, [plants] have no choice as to what they take up. Many of these fertilizers have lead, cadmium and heavy metals, and they’re soluble. When you water with those, [plants] take up these heavy metals.

In an organic system, it’s the other way around. The toxins bond with the organic matter, and the plants actively select which molecules they need, so they can avoid these toxins. That’s when we find, when we do the testing, there’s a huge difference.

Even if they’re growing in the same region, there’s a huge difference in the amount of toxins in organic food compared to conventional. The largest study … a meta-analysis of something like 300 comparison studies between organic and conventional, found organic food always has significantly lower levels of these toxins and heavy metals.”

Synergistic Effects Are Completely Ignored

Even if there were limited danger from a given chemical, no one — no organization or agency — is looking at the synergistic effects of combining two or more chemicals, which is how we’re actually exposed to them.

Rarely, if ever, do we come in contact with a chemical in isolation. In the normal production of any agricultural product, any crop, there are multiple approved pesticides that can be used, such as herbicides, fungicides and insecticides. Within a normal crop cycle, most of them are used, which is why foods frequently test positive for not just one but several different pesticides.

To that, we also have to add all the different cocktails of chemicals found in our homes, such as cleaning products, personal care items, plasticizers and fire retardant chemicals found in a wide variety of materials, just to name a few. There’s absolutely no scientific evidence to show that these combinations are safe. Independent testing, however, has revealed that combinations of chemicals have synergistic effects that increase their potency or ability to cause harm.

“When we talk about synergisms, where instead of an additive effect, where one plus one equals two, in synergism, one plus one can cause three or four. We have examples where one and one can equal more than 1,000 in toxicity. The effects are multiplied,” Leu explains.

“This is a huge issue because not one regulatory agency in the world is doing anything about it. Regulatory agencies, like the U.S. EPA and the European Food Safety Agency (EFSA) are tasked by their governments to take this into account. They’re supposed to have been doing this for the last 20 years, and not one has done anything whatsoever.”

How to Protect Your Family From Pesticide Exposure

Two common-sense strategies to minimize your exposure to pesticides is to grow and buy organically produced foods. You don’t need pesticides for your garden. There are many safe alternatives for when pests and plant diseases strike, and solutions can be found both in books and online.

“Go back to the way food is supposed to be, which is fresh and local, whenever possible. Cook real food,” Leu advises. “Avoid processed food, which not only is denatured in terms of the nutrient value, it’s got all these different additives that we also know are toxic.

Once again, there’s no science to show that they’re safe, but we’re learning more and more about the dangers of all these food additives. Just go back to eating good, fresh and healthy food. It’s going to make a huge difference to your children and to yourself as well.”

Also remember that change always comes from people, not from governments. “You have to make this change yourself,” he says. “It’s simple to make. If enough of us are making this change, we’ll actually change agriculture because the retailers and farmers will be forced to change production to meet the market. Buying organic food, buying local food, going to CSAs, is actually a very powerful political and change act. Your dollars will do more to change the system than probably anything else.”

So, remember, vote with your pocketbook, and encourage others to do it as well. The more people who are involved, the stronger the incentive is for industry to change their destructive and toxic practices.

“I’ve been involved in this for 45 years. The best organic regenerative systems are actually higher-yielding than industrial agriculture. It’s a myth to say that all organic is low-yielding. We now have good science on how we can grow nutrient-dense, healthy food, and get higher yields per acre than the industrial systems.

In fact, the industrial systems are running down the environment so quickly — and producing toxic food — that this world will not survive if we continue to go down that agricultural path.

The only way we’re going to survive is by going over to regenerative systems that we know are good for the environment, increase biodiversity, increase the health of regions, and make sure that we don’t have all these poisons going into our water supply, air and our food … [Organic food] helps protect us against degenerative diseases, against toxins. Really, it’s a win, win, win.”

Recommended articles by Dr. Joseph Mercola:

About the author:

Born and raised in the inner city of Chicago, IL, Dr. Joseph Mercola is an osteopathic physician trained in both traditional and natural medicine. Board-certified in family medicine, Dr. Mercola served as the chairman of the family medicine department at St. Alexius Medical Center for five years, and in 2012 was granted fellowship status by the American College of Nutrition (ACN).

While in practice in the late 80s, Dr. Mercola realized the drugs he was prescribing to chronically ill patients were not working. By the early 90s, he began exploring the world of natural medicine, and soon changed the way he practiced medicine.

In 1997 Dr. Mercola founded Mercola.com, which is now routinely among the top 10 health sites on the internet. His passion is to transform the traditional medical paradigm in the United States. “The existing medical establishment is responsible for killing and permanently injuring millions of Americans… You want practical health solutions without the hype, and that’s what I offer.”

Visit Mercola.com for more information, or read Dr. Mercola’s full bio and resumé here.

Originally posted on: https://wakeup-world.com/2018/07/24/poisoning-our-children-the-parents-guide-to-the-myths-of-safe-pesticides/