Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Vitamins, Genetic Food, Health

Boycott Kellogg's For Using Genetically Modified Sugar in its Cereal Products
Wednesday, April 29, 2009 by: David Gutierrez
(NaturalNews) The Organic Consumers Association (OCA) has called for a boycott of the Kellogg Company, also known as Kellogg's, after the company refused to sign a pledge refusing to use genetically modified sugar in its cereal products.
Sugar from genetically modified sugar beets hit the U.S. market for the first time this year, making the beets the first genetically engineered crop to enter the U.S. food stream since the widespread introduction of modified corn and soy in the 1990s. The sugar has been modified by the Monsanto Corporation to be resistant to the company's signature herbicide, Roundup.
"These GE sugar beets do not provide any environmental, nutritional or food quality benefits whatsoever," the OCA said. "They are created by Monsanto to withstand massive doses of herbicides and keep farmers on a never ending pesticide treadmill that is bad news for rural communities, the environment and consumers. The bottom line is that there are numerous options to GE sugar beets."
More than 73 food producers and retailers have signed a pledge not to use genetically modified sugar in their products. When asked by the OCA to make such a pledge, however, Kellogg's said it had no intention of doing so. While the company will make sure not to use modified sugar in any of its European products -- the European Union has not approved sugar from the beets for human consumption -- Kellogg's insists that U.S. consumers do not care if their food is genetically modified.
"However, poll after poll have demonstrated that Americans want GE foods labeled and restricted," the OCA said.
The OCA said that it decided to launch a Kellogg's boycott only after the company refused to heed more than 15,000 letters asking the company not to use the modified beet sugar. In addition, the company clearly has the logistical ability to avoid genetically modified sugar, since it is already doing so for its European products.
Take care of your body. It's the only place you have to live. - Jim Rohn

Nutricide - Criminalizing Natural Health, Vitamins, and Herbs:

Codex Alimentarius - The Sinister Truth Behind Operation Cure-All. (From an original article by Ruth James): http://www.natural-health-information-centre.com/codex-alimentarius.html Instead of focusing on food safety, Codex is using its power to promote worldwide restrictions on vitamins and food supplements, severely limiting their availability and dosages. It appears our government (as well as al others) is being manipulated one way or another to serve the goals of the UN, the World Health Organization and the World Trade Organization. Food control equals people control -- and population control. Is this beginning to sound like world government and one-world order? Could this be the real goal behind Codex Alimentarius?

A new breed of genetically modified crops could provide cheap drugs and vaccines for the developing world. There's only one problem, writes Guardian environment correspondent David Adam, what if they get into the food chain? http://freeinternetpress.com/story.php?sid=11558 Conventional drug manufacturers have shown little interest in pharming technology. With a few exceptions, the big companies do not smell big profits in the vulnerable people or regions of the world that would benefit most. Monsanto, the agrochemical giant behind many GM food crops, closed down its pharming efforts in 2003.
Watch Video
The World According to Monsanto - A documentary that Americans won't ever see. - 109 min
The Mystery in Your Milk by Jane Akre & Steve Wilson: http://www.mercola.com/2001/may/26/mystery_milk.htm The report that Monsanto and Fox TV didn't want you to see. Jane Akre and Steve Wilson, a respected reporting team at WTTV, a Fox Network Station in Tampa, Florida, were fired from their jobs after refusing to broadcast what they knew and documented to be false and distorted information about Monsanto's bovine growth hormone (BGH) -- a genetically engineered product that has been linked to the proliferation of breast, prostate, and colon cancer cells in humans.

Drug giants accused of ignoring fake medicines that kill millions by Saeed Shah: http://news.independent.co.uk/world/africa/article2444464.ece The world's major drug companies have been accused of turning a blind eye to the multibillion-dollar trade in fake medicine that has resulted in an explosion of child malaria deaths in developing countries. Governments have not tackled the problem and pharmaceutical companies are burying the issue, afraid that any publicity given to their medicines being faked will lead to a fall in the sale of the genuine product, according to a documentary.

Well-funded criminals attack NewsTarget, health freedom groups with covert disruption campaigns: http://www.newstarget.com/021788.html Top health freedom consumer advocacy groups in the United States are being clandestinely targeted by organized disruption campaigns and "black PR" efforts. The apparent purpose of these campaigns is to discredit, disrupt and censor their natural health and health freedom political and educational efforts.

FDA attempting to regulate supplements, herbs and juices as "drugs": http://www.newstarget.com/021789.html This move by the FDA is designed to once and for all destroy the 1994 DSHEA law that has made supplements "legal" while eliminating nutritional supplements and natural medicine from the United States, ensuring monopoly profits and control by drug companies and the FDA. It is the latest action item by the FDA / Big Pharma conspiracy that will not stop until health freedom has been abolished, drug companies rule the nation, and every citizen is diagnosied with a fictitious disease and drugged up on monopoly-priced pharmaceuticals.
Which Vitamin Will Improve Your Life Expectancy the Most?Dr. Mercola September 29 2007
Vitamin D supplements may lower your risk of dying from any cause, according to a new European study.
Researchers from the European Institute of Oncology in Milan, Italy, and the International Agency for Research on Cancer in Lyon, France, reviewed 18 trials of more than 57,000 people.
The trials involved doses of vitamin D ranging from 300 international units (IUs) to 2,000 IUs. The average dose was 528 IUs.After a period of six years, the data showed that people who took vitamin D supplements had a 7 percent lower risk of death compared to people who did not take the supplements.
Further, according to the nine trials that collected blood samples, people who took vitamin D supplements had a 1.4- to 5.2-fold higher level of vitamin D in their blood than those who did not.
Because vitamin D can reduce the proliferation of cells, which occurs in cancer, the researchers believe their finding could lead to new drugs to fight cancer and other illnesses.
Vitamin D also helps your body to uptake calcium for bone health.
The researchers recommend taking between 400 IUs and 600 IUs of vitamin D daily. Your skin can also produce its own vitamin D by getting moderate sun exposure each day.
Archives of Internal Medicine September 10, 2007;167:1730-1737
Forbes.com September 10, 2007
Dr. Mercola's Comments:
Vitamin D is much more important to your health than you may think. As this new study found, it appears to reduce your risk of death from all causes. What many people hear, though, is simply that vitamin D can prevent rickets and is good for your bones. But it has so much more impact than that.Diseases that vitamin D is known to positively influence include:
Heart Disease
Diabetes and Inflammatory Bowel Disease
Rheumatoid Arthritis
Multiple Sclerosis
You may have also read the ground breaking study I posted in August that found 600,000 cases of cancer could be prevented EVERY year just by increasing your levels of vitamin D.Even beyond cancer, the researchers pointed out that increasing levels of vitamin D3 could prevent diseases that claim nearly 1 million lives throughout the world each year!The Best Way to Get Vitamin DThis is an important study as it is one of the first ones that seems to confirm a benefit on mortality with supplements rather than sun exposure. I still firmly believe, though, that the best way to raise your vitamin D level is NOT with supplements, but by exposure to sunshine on your bare skin. However, getting sun exposure is not always practical, especially if you live in the Chicago area like I do. During the winter, or during other times of the year when sun exposure is not a possibility for you, then supplementation is an option.If you decide to supplement your diet with vitamin D, there are two crucial things to know:
It IS possible to overdose on oral vitamin D supplements (there’s very little risk of overdosing on vitamin D from the sun, however), so you need to have your blood levels of vitamin D measured regularly.
Only vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol), the type of vitamin D found naturally in foods like eggs, organ meats, animal fat, cod liver oil, and fish, is appropriate for supplementation. Do NOT use the highly inferior vitamin D2.
What’s an Optimal Vitamin D Level?The OPTIMAL value of vitamin D that you’re looking for is 45-52 ng/ml (115-128 nmol/l).You can find out what your levels are by asking your doctor for a blood test called a 25(OH)D, also called 25-hydroxyvitamin D. (Please note, there are two types of vitamin D tests, and this one is the one you want.)Again, if you are taking vitamin D supplements, you should have your levels tested regularly to make sure you don’t overdose.The topic of vitamin D, and its immense beneficial impact on health, is something that’s interested me for years, and there’s so much information that I want to share with you that I wrote a book on the topic called Dark Deception.Dark Deception explores the topic of vitamin D in detail, and exposes why the conventional wisdom on the subject, which encourages you to stay out of the sun, is dead wrong.Related Links:
The Secret Benefits of Vitamin D
BEWARE of Most Prescription Vitamin D Supplements!
More Evidence Vitamin D Beats the Flu
FDA proposes approval process for genetically modified animals
The regulations would treat genetically engineered creatures like drugs. Critics suggest environmental concerns aren't being given proper weight. By Karen Kaplan and Thomas H. Maugh II, Los Angeles Times Staff Writers
September 19, 2008
The Food and Drug Administration on Thursday opened the way for a bevy of genetically engineered salmon, cows and other animals to leap from the laboratory to the marketplace, unveiling an approval process that would treat the modified creatures like drugs.
The guidelines for the first time make explicit the regulatory hoops companies would have to jump through to sell engineered salmon that grow twice as fast as wild fish; pigs with high levels of healthy omega-3 fatty acids in their meat; or goats that produce beneficial proteins, such as insulin, in their milk."It's about time the federal government has acknowledged that these animals are on its doorstep and need to be regulated to ensure their safety," said Greg Jaffe, biotechnology director at the Center for Science in the Public Interest in Washington.
Many experts, however, say the proposed regulations may not go far enough to protect the public. In particular, they argue that the approval process would be highly secretive to guard the commercial interests of the companies involved, and that the new rules do not place sufficient weight on the potential environmental effect of what many consider to be Frankenstein animals.
Animals can't be treated exactly like drugs, said Jaydee Hanson, a policy analyst at the Center for Food Safety in Washington. "Drugs don't go out and breed with each other. When a drug gets loose, you figure you can control it. When a bull gets loose, it would be harder to corral."
The animals are genetically modified for a variety of purposes.
Some are designed to be more disease-resistant, such as the cow that is not susceptible to mad cow disease. Others are more nutritious or grow faster, enhancing profits.
Researchers are considering modified animals as sources of organs for human transplants. Another idea involves so-called biopharm animals, which would be used to produce drugs such as insulin."There are very compelling and real benefits for humans and animals" from genetic engineering, said William Flynn of the FDA's Center for Veterinary Medicine. "But we must show that they are safe before they enter the marketplace."The new regulations do not cover cloned animals, most pets or research animals. The FDA has already determined that clones -- genetic replicas -- are safe. Pets and research animals are unlikely to enter the food chain.
Only one genetically engineered animal is now being sold in the United States, the glow-in-the-dark zebra fish for aquariums. The FDA approved it because it is not eaten and its need for warm water effectively precludes its escape into the wild. The first product likely to be sold under the new rules is a genetically engineered Atlantic salmon produced by Aqua Bounty Technologies Inc. of Waltham, Mass. Inserted genes from two other fish allow it to reach full size in 18 months rather than the normal 30. Aqua Bounty, along with other biotechnology companies, has been pushing the FDA to establish guidelines and hopes to win approval next year.
Technically, it is not the modified animals but the added DNA segments that are considered drugs. Realistically, however, the only way to regulate the property-changing DNA is to regulate the animal, said Eric Flamm, a policy advisor at the agency.
That regulation will require demonstration that the modified animal itself is healthy and that a food or drug produced from it is safe for human use. The new rules do not envision feeding the products to humans in the equivalent of clinical trials for drugs.
Once an animal product has been approved, its labeling may or may not reflect its origin, the FDA said. If the composition of meat or other food has been changed, such as by increasing its content of omega-3 fats, that will be put on its label. But if the animal simply grows faster or is more environmentally friendly without changes in composition, no mention of its genetically engineered origin is considered necessary. The lack of labeling concerns consumer advocacy groups. Jean Halloran, director of food policy initiatives at Consumers Union, called it "incomprehensible."
"Consumers have the right to know if the ham, bacon or pork chops they are buying . . . have been engineered with mouse genes," she said.
Of Mice, Men and In-Between Scientists Debate Blending Of Human, Animal Forms
By Rick Weiss, Washington Post Staff Writer Saturday, November 20, 2004; Page A01
In Minnesota, pigs are being born with human blood in their veins.
In Nevada, there are sheep whose livers and hearts are largely human.
In California, mice peer from their cages with human brain cells firing inside their skulls.
These are not outcasts from "The Island of Dr. Moreau," the 1896 novel by H.G. Wells in which a rogue doctor develops creatures that are part animal and part human. They are real creations of real scientists, stretching the boundaries of stem cell research.
Biologists call these hybrid animals chimeras, after the mythical Greek creature with a lion's head, a goat's body and a serpent's tail. They are the products of experiments in which human stem cells were added to developing animal fetuses.
Chimeras are allowing scientists to watch, for the first time, how nascent human cells and organs mature and interact -- not in the cold isolation of laboratory dishes but inside the bodies of living creatures. Some are already revealing deep secrets of human biology and pointing the way toward new medical treatments.
But with no federal guidelines in place, an awkward question hovers above the work: How human must a chimera be before more stringent research rules should kick in?
The National Academy of Sciences, which advises the federal government, has been studying the issue and hopes to make recommendations by February. Yet the range of opinions it has received so far suggests that reaching consensus may be difficult.
During one recent meeting, scientists disagreed on such basic issues as whether it would be unethical for a human embryo to begin its development in an animal's womb, and whether a mouse would be better or worse off with a brain made of human neurons.
"This is an area where we really need to come to a reasonable consensus," said James Battey, chairman of the National Institutes of Health's Stem Cell Task Force. "We need to establish some kind of guidelines as to what the scientific community ought to do and ought not to do."
Beyond Twins and Moms Chimeras (ki-MER-ahs) -- meaning mixtures of two or more individuals in a single body -- are not inherently unnatural. Most twins carry at least a few cells from the sibling with whom they shared a womb, and most mothers carry in their blood at least a few cells from each child they have born.
Recipients of organ transplants are also chimeras, as are the many people whose defective heart valves have been replaced with those from pigs or cows. And scientists for years have added human genes to bacteria and even to farm animals -- feats of genetic engineering that allow those critters to make human proteins such as insulin for use as medicines.
"Chimeras are not as strange and alien as at first blush they seem," said Henry Greely, a law professor and ethicist at Stanford University who has reviewed proposals to create human-mouse chimeras there.
But chimerism becomes a more sensitive topic when it involves growing entire human organs inside animals. And it becomes especially sensitive when it deals in brain cells, the building blocks of the organ credited with making humans human.
In experiments like those, Greely told the academy last month, "there is a nontrivial risk of conferring some significant aspects of humanity" on the animal.
Greely and his colleagues did not conclude that such experiments should never be done. Indeed, he and many other philosophers have been wrestling with the question of why so many people believe it is wrong to breach the species barrier.
Does the repugnance reflect an understanding of an important natural law? Or is it just another cultural bias, like the once widespread rejection of interracial marriage?
Many turn to the Bible's repeated invocation that animals should multiply "after their kind" as evidence that such experiments are wrong. Others, however, have concluded that the core problem is not necessarily the creation of chimeras but rather the way they are likely to be treated.
Imagine, said Robert Streiffer, a professor of philosophy and bioethics at the University of Wisconsin, a human-chimpanzee chimera endowed with speech and an enhanced potential to learn -- what some have called a "humanzee."
"There's a knee-jerk reaction that enhancing the moral status of an animal is bad," Streiffer said. "But if you did it, and you gave it the protections it deserves, how could the animal complain?"
Unfortunately, said Harvard political philosopher Michael J. Sandel, speaking last fall at a meeting of the President's Council on Bioethics, such protections are unlikely.
"Chances are we would make them perform menial jobs or dangerous jobs," Sandel said. "That would be an objection."
A Research Breakthrough The potential power of chimeras as research tools became clear about a decade ago in a series of dramatic experiments by Evan Balaban, now at McGill University in Montreal. Balaban took small sections of brain from developing quails and transplanted them into the developing brains of chickens.
The resulting chickens exhibited vocal trills and head bobs unique to quails, proving that the transplanted parts of the brain contained the neural circuitry for quail calls. It also offered astonishing proof that complex behaviors could be transferred across species.
No one has proposed similar experiments between, say, humans and apes. But the discovery of human embryonic stem cells in 1998 allowed researchers to envision related experiments that might reveal a lot about how embryos grow.
The cells, found in 5-day-old human embryos, multiply prolifically and -- unlike adult cells -- have the potential to turn into any of the body's 200 or so cell types.
Scientists hope to cultivate them in laboratory dishes and grow replacement tissues for patients. But with those applications years away, the cells are gaining in popularity for basic research.
The most radical experiment, still not conducted, would be to inject human stem cells into an animal embryo and then transfer that chimeric embryo into an animal's womb. Scientists suspect the proliferating human cells would spread throughout the animal embryo as it matured into a fetus and integrate themselves into every organ.
Such "humanized" animals could have countless uses. They would almost certainly provide better ways to test a new drug's efficacy and toxicity, for example, than the ordinary mice typically used today.
But few scientists are eager to do that experiment. The risk, they say, is that some human cells will find their way to the developing testes or ovaries, where they might grow into human sperm and eggs. If two such chimeras -- say, mice -- were to mate, a human embryo might form, trapped in a mouse.
Not everyone agrees that this would be a terrible result.
"What would be so dreadful?" asked Ann McLaren, a renowned developmental biologist at the University of Cambridge in England. After all, she said, no human embryo could develop successfully in a mouse womb. It would simply die, she told the academy. No harm done.
But others disagree -- if only out of fear of a public backlash.
"Certainly you'd get a negative response from people to have a human embryo trying to grow in the wrong place," said Cynthia B. Cohen, a senior research fellow at Georgetown University's Kennedy Institute of Ethics and a member of Canada's Stem Cell Oversight Committee, which supported a ban on such experiments there.
How Human? But what about experiments in which scientists add human stem cells not to an animal embryo but to an animal fetus, which has already made its eggs and sperm? Then the only question is how human a creature one dares to make.
In one ongoing set of experiments, Jeffrey L. Platt at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., has created human-pig chimeras by adding human-blood-forming stem cells to pig fetuses. The resulting pigs have both pig and human blood in their vessels. And it's not just pig blood cells being swept along with human blood cells; some of the cells themselves have merged, creating hybrids.
It is important to have learned that human and pig cells can fuse, Platt said, because he and others have been considering transplanting modified pig organs into people and have been wondering if that might pose a risk of pig viruses getting into patient's cells. Now scientists know the risk is real, he said, because the viruses may gain access when the two cells fuse.
In other experiments led by Esmail Zanjani, chairman of animal biotechnology at the University of Nevada at Reno, scientists have been adding human stem cells to sheep fetuses. The team now has sheep whose livers are up to 80 percent human -- and make all the compounds human livers make.
Zanjani's goal is to make the humanized livers available to people who need transplants. The sheep portions will be rejected by the immune system, he predicted, while the human part will take root.
"I don't see why anyone would raise objections to our work," Zanjani said in an interview.
Immunity Advantages Perhaps the most ambitious efforts to make use of chimeras come from Irving Weissman, director of Stanford University's Institute of Cancer/Stem Cell Biology and Medicine. Weissman helped make the first mouse with a nearly complete human immune system -- an animal that has proved invaluable for tests of new drugs against the AIDS virus, which does not infect conventional mice.
More recently his team injected human neural stem cells into mouse fetuses, creating mice whose brains are about 1 percent human. By dissecting the mice at various stages, the researchers were able to see how the added brain cells moved about as they multiplied and made connections with mouse cells.
Already, he said, they have learned things they "never would have learned had there been a bioethical ban."
Now he wants to add human brain stem cells that have the defects that cause Parkinson's disease, Lou Gehrig's disease and other brain ailments -- and study how those cells make connections.
Scientists suspect that these diseases, though they manifest themselves in adulthood, begin when something goes wrong early in development. If those errors can be found, researchers would have a much better chance of designing useful drugs, Weissman said. And those drugs could be tested in the chimeras in ways not possible in patients.
Now Weissman says he is thinking about making chimeric mice whose brains are 100 percent human. He proposes keeping tabs on the mice as they develop. If the brains look as if they are taking on a distinctly human architecture -- a development that could hint at a glimmer of humanness -- they could be killed, he said. If they look as if they are organizing themselves in a mouse brain architecture, they could be used for research.
So far this is just a "thought experiment," Weissman said, but he asked the university's ethics group for an opinion anyway.
"Everyone said the mice would be useful," he said. "But no one was sure if it should be done."