Have you ever heard you are what you eat? Chances are you have. In today’s environment however it is more important than ever. Unfortunately, there are lots of GMOs, pesticides, pollutants everywhere and inhumane animal farming which creates bioamplification or biomagnification which means the toxins accumulate faster than the animal can get rid of them. So we are poisoning ourselves and killing our environment….
Sounds very gloomy right. Well there are action steps you can take. One is to avoid processed foods whenever possible. This can be done usually by walking around the four corners of the grocery store. And please keep in mind “natural” does not mean organic. Foods that begin with stickers that begin with 4 are conventionally grown (yes they are grown with pesticides) , stickers beginning with 8 mean GMO (stay away!!) and stickers beginning with 9 are organic. All meats and milk must be organic: however, I do know it costs more. I reduced the amount of meat I ate to keep the grocery costs the same and replaced it with more vegetables (score for my health!). Organic milk and meats also have higher antioxidants, iron, vitamin E and CLA (helps insulin resistance, fights cancer). I recommend grass fed beef and free-range pastured eggs. With regards to fish make sure it is wild caught and not farmed fish (bioaccumulation).
The highest pesticide fruits and vegetables are : apples, peaches, nectarines, grapes, strawberries, celery, spinach, sweet bell peppers, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, snap peas, potatoes, hot peppers, spinach, cherries and kale.
The lowest pesticide produce is avocadoes, sweet corn, pineapple, cabbage, sweet peas, onions, asparagus, mangos, papayas, kiwi, eggplant, mangos honey-do melon, grapefruit , cauliflower. However, corn is mostly GMO so I would buy this organic.
In fact, most soy, corn, sugar beets, canola oil, papaya, cotton, dairy are GMO. So please make sure the label states “100% Organic” not just organic (which can be 30% GMO). Make sure your labels state “100 % Organic, Non-GMO, GMO Free, Grass-fed” and if you can shop locally. Natural, cage-free, and other terms do not mean the same thing. Remember, Food Is Health!!
Other options to help reduce your pesticide exposure is to make your own round-up (1 gallon vinegar, 1 cup salt, 1 Tablespoon castile soap), make your own cleaning supplies (vinegar, water, optional essential oil), and do your fruit/vegetable wash (add 1 cup vinegar to los of water OR 1 teaspoon castile soap) . You let the vegetable/fruits soak for 10-15 minutes, rinse and let them dry.
This is not a full list but rather a way to get started. I will add another blog within a couple of weeks to include more ways to reduce exposure to pesticides, pollutants and GMOs. Below I have included more specific and scientific reasons as to why pesticides, GMO’s are so dangerous.
One example, Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBS), specifically PCB153 reduces telomerase activity and length. Senthikumar, et al., found that stem cells may be at risk of premature telomere shortening with potential adverse health effects. In other words, these pollutants can shorten lives, threaten vitality and even cause cancer. In addition, they can affect the immune system dysfunction: for example delayed immune response; decreased Epstein-Barr resistance (most people have resistance by 35), increased incidence of Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (cancer) and size decrease in the thymus gland. Reproductive effects such as decreased sperm count, low birth weight and decreased gestational age. Another effect is the neurobiological effects: children of mothers who worked in factories had lessened capacities to learn, loss of short-term memory, and visual recognition. Endocrine disruption may also occur as it has been found in the Netherlands and Japan that infants showed a decrease in thyroid hormones. Not to mention the dermal (skin), ocular (eye), elevated blood pressure, elevated cholesterol, and elevated serum trigylcerides.
Now to talk about Glycophosphate aka Glyophate aka Roundup which Monsanto created to destroy weeds. A Norwegian study (Bohn, Cuhra 2014) revealed that the current level is twice as much as what Monsanto deemed extreme in 1999. Very scary considering that Glyophate has been shown to cause infertility, cancers, Parkinson’s, birth defects, autism, obesity, Multiple Sclerosis, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, ALS, Depression, and many more. Monsanto contends that it is in fact safe due to the Shikimate pathway (biochemical pathway) which the human body does not have. But do you know what does? Bacteria. And in my former life as a microbiologist most bacterial are beneficial which is why probiotics are fantastic for your immune system. What happens is these bacteria fill a niche and protect against foreign invaders. Well, if there is nothing there to protect you, opportunistic infections come in and cause a breakdown in function, disease, or even death.
Cynthia Cooper, D.C.
- Zerbe, April (April 25, 2014) Extreme Levels of Roundup Detected in Food.
- Bohn, Thomas: Cuhra, Marek (April 2014) ‘Extreme Levels of Roundup are the norm in GMO soy.
- Mercola (April 2014) Gut-Wrenching New Studies Reveal the Insidious Effects of Glyphosate.
- XinX., Senthilkumar PK, Schnoor JL, Ludewig G (Feb 23 2016) Effects of PCB126 and PCB154 on telomerase activity and telomere length in undifferentiated and differentiated HL-60 cells. Environmental Sci. Pollut. Res. Int.
- Learn About Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs) epa.gov