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Tuesday, April 9, 2013


Toxic Consumption: Big Pharma Putting Pharmaceuticals in Water

Posted: 09 Apr 2013 02:08 AM PDT
The United States is a consumption monster when it comes to prescription drugs. And while we are beginning to see their effects on our health and our wallets, we often don’t consider their effects on the environment and the world around us. What’s more, we don’t even know how present these drugs truly are, especially when considering how big pharma has been putting pharmaceuticals in water across the nation for years.

Pharmaceuticals in Water Thanks to Big Pharma

In 2002, federal scientists discovered that such pharmaceutical drugs are being dumped into the sewer systems and potentially finding their ways back into the drinking water.

According to MSNBC, the presence of pharmaceuticals in water at sewage treatment plants downstream from drug manufacturing facilities are much higher than the levels at plants where there are no drug makers upstream. These drugs include opiates, tranquilizers, and barbiturates, among many other active pharmaceutical ingredients.

Pharmaceutical companies are quick to say their wastewater doesn’t pollute the water systems around them, but this analysis would suggest that (like in many other situations), they aren’t being completely honest.

One drug was detected in levels “hundreds of times higher than the level at which federal regulators can order a review of a drug’s environmental impact.” That drug was the muscle relaxer metaxalone.

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Posted: 09 Apr 2013 02:08 AM PDT
New data released by Japan's Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare (MHLW) shows once again that the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster is far from over. Despite a complete media blackout on the current situation, levels of Cesium-137 (Cs-137) and Cesium-134 (Cs-134) found in produce and rice crackers located roughly 225 miles away from Fukushima are high enough to cause residents to exceed the annual radiation exposure limit in just a few months, or even weeks.

According to, which posts up-to-date information about the Fukushima disaster, rice crackers and tangerines produced in the Shizuoka prefecture are testing high for both Cs-137 and Cs-134. Rice crackers, according to the data sheet, tested at 3.7 Becquerels per kilogram (Bq/Kg) of Cs-137, while tangerines tested at 1.46 Bq/Kg of Cs-134 and 3.14 Bq/Kg of Cs-137.

The Shizuoka prefecture is located about 80 miles southwest of Tokyo, which is highly concerning as it is actually farther away from Fukushima than Tokyo. This suggest that potentially deadly levels of radiation are still affecting large population centers across Japan, including those that are not even in close proximity to the Fukushima plant.

It is generally regarded that adult radiation workers should be exposed to no more than 50 millisieverts (mSv) of radiation per year in order to avoid serious health consequences. For children, this number is far lower, probably somewhere around 10 mSv, with this being on the high end. But the average adult and child eating these tainted foods at their current radiation levels will not only reach but exceed the safe maximum in just a few weeks.
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Posted: 09 Apr 2013 02:08 AM PDT
It’s not surprising that processed foods are designed to foster addictive behavior — robbing us of our health, serenity and hard-earned cash. Sugar, fat, salt and artificial flavors are manipulated in such a way that after one taste, consumers just cannot help themselves and a vicious cycle begins. Not only ingredients, but texture, shape and ‘mouth feel’ are all heavily researched and refined to create a highly pleasurable experience as well.

Even though the average American does not view junk food as an addiction, researchers have discovered unhealthy food can actually seize the brain in the same way nicotine, cocaine and other drugs do — leaving us at the mercy of cravings and binges.

Processed food – The devil is in the details

Picture for a moment two pieces of chocolate. Both have identical ingredients and are processed in the same manner except for one crucial difference: shape. One is square and the other round. The commercial food industry is betting the latter will be the chocolate of choice — hooking more repeat customers while selling a higher volume. Incredibly, the size and shape of chocolate is big business. For three years, Nestle studied the “detection mechanisms in the oral cavity” and “improving melt-in-mouth quality while simultaneously reserving enough space in the mouth for the aroma to enrich the sensorial experience,” according to their press release. In a nutshell, the round shape will bring greater pleasure and higher consumption rates while increasing corporate profits. And Nestle is just one instance. In the highly competitive field of processed and fast food, neuroscience has entered the scene to help create the most addictive, lucrative and sought-after junk food.
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Posted: 09 Apr 2013 02:07 AM PDT
After all the trouble you go through to avoid chemically sprayed foods and toxins in tap and bottled water, now you hear that what you’re wearing may actually be helping to make you sick. But could this really be true? Are clothes toxic?

Toxic chemicals are used excessively for processing garment fibers and also for manufacturing clothes. Asian and third world countries manufacture most textiles and clothes, and their industrial pollution and workplace chemical safeguard standards are usually lacking or ignored. This is a bit concerning as clothing clings to our largest organ – the skin.

Chemical Clothing: How the Garment Industry is Harming You and the Environment

After clothes are made, they are often covered with formaldehyde to keep them from wrinkling or becoming mildewed during shipping. Several severe allergic reactions to formaldehyde have been reported, and investigations have discovered up to 900 times the recommended safe level of formaldehyde in clothing shipped to brand name clothiers from factories in China and Southeast Asia.

These synthetic materials are produced with toxic chemicals, and while they may not produce immediate reactions for most, the long term accumulation of these toxins added to our polluted air, water, and food can cause numerous health ailments, including cancer. Clothing that doesn’t require ironing or is labeled wrinkle free may even contain perfluorinated chemical (PFC) used to make Teflon – this chemical is known to cause health issues.
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Posted: 09 Apr 2013 02:07 AM PDT
Parents in Marion County, Oregon lost their battle in court Wednesday to choose whether or not their eight children would be vaccinated after losing custody to the state last year.

A ruling from The Oregon Court of Appeals said that the parents did not have the right to exempt their children from forced vaccinations after child welfare workers and the Oregon Department of Human Services fought to obtain a court order demanding the children receive multiple vaccinations last year.

The court also decided that since the state had custody of the children, it had the right to make all their medical decisions without the parents' consent. Although the children are living with relatives, they are considered wards of the state.

The parents, who say vaccinations are against their religious beliefs, had their children removed for undisclosed reasons last year after the state claimed concerns over their welfare. Despite the ruling, it appears the children have yet to be vaccinated while the parents have the option of appealing the ruling to Oregon's Supreme Court.

Given the fact that children now receive as many as 26 shots by two years of age as compared to the 1960's number of 4 shots, parents choosing not to vaccinate in Oregon alone now accounts for 5.8% of kindergartners according to the Center for Disease Control.

Several studies includng a recent independent German study from 2011 also found that vaccinated children had at least 2 to 5 times as many disorders and diseases as compared unvaccinated children.
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Posted: 09 Apr 2013 02:07 AM PDT
Slaughter Demands Strong Federal Response

Rochester, NY – Today, Congresswoman Louise Slaughter (NY-25), the only microbiologist in Congress, reacted to a new study that conclusively identified transmission of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) from livestock to humans. Currently, MRSA kills more Americans each year than HIV/AIDS.

The groundbreaking study was conducted by genetics researchers who analyzed the genomes of MRSA bacteria from patients and their farm animals, and found the samples to be genetically identical. Published on Tuesday in EMBO Molecular Medicine, the study confirms animal-to-human transmission of MRSA.

In reaction, Slaughter sent a letter to Dr. Margaret Hamburg, the Commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration today calling for immediate action to reduce the use of antibiotics in livestock. Read the text of the letter by clicking here.

In sending the letter, Slaughter said, “This study ends any debate. The extreme overuse of antibiotics in livestock is endangering human health.” Slaughter continued, “For decades, the United States Food and Drug Administration has failed to act in the face of a growing threat. These findings make it clearer than ever that their failure is endangering human life. Starting today, the FDA must take strong federal action to reduce antibiotic use in livestock and protect human health.”

To view the text of the legislation, click here.

Currently, 80 percent of all antibiotics sold in the United States are sold for agricultural use. Most often, these antibiotics are distributed at sub-therapeutic levels to healthy animals as a way to compensate for crowded and unsanitary living conditions or to promote growth. Any effort to stop the growth of antibiotic-resistant bacteria must address the overuse of antibiotics in food-animals.
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