Magic Beverage - Coffee, Part 2

Coffee consumption may reduce the risk of all-cause and cardiac mortality

BACKGROUND: Coffee consumption has been linked to various beneficial and detrimental health effects, but data on its relation with mortality are sparse. OBJECTIVE: To assess the association between coffee consumption and mortality from cardiovascular disease (CVD), cancer, and all causes during 18 years of follow-up in men and 24 years of follow-up in women. DESIGN: Sex-specific Cox proportional hazard models were used to investigate the association between coffee consumption and incidence of all-cause and disease-specific mortality in a prospective cohort study. SETTING: Health Professionals Follow-up Study and Nurses' Health Study. PARTICIPANTS: 41,736 men and 86,214 women with no history of CVD or cancer at baseline. MEASUREMENTS: Coffee consumption was assessed first in 1986 for men and in 1980 for women and then every 2 to 4 years through 2004. Investigators documented 6888 deaths (2049 due to CVD and 2491 due to cancer) among men and 11,095 deaths (2368 due to CVD and 5011 due to cancer) among women. RESULTS: After adjustment for age, smoking, and other CVD and cancer risk factors, the relative risks for all-cause mortality in men across categories of coffee consumption (<1 cup per month, 1 cup per month to 4 cups per week, 5 to 7 cups per week, 2 to 3 cups per day, 4 to 5 cups per day, and>or=6 cups per day) were 1.0, 1.07 (95% CI, 0.99 to 1.16), 1.02 (CI, 0.95 to 1.11), 0.97 (CI, 0.89 to 1.05), 0.93 (CI, 0.81 to 1.07), and 0.80 (CI, 0.62 to 1.04), respectively (P for trend = 0.008). For women, the relative risks were 1.0, 0.98 (CI, 0.91 to 1.05), 0.93 (CI, 0.87 to 0.98), 0.82 (CI, 0.77 to 0.87), 0.74 (CI, 0.68 to 0.81), and 0.83 (CI, 0.73 to 0.95), respectively (P for trend<0.001). This inverse association was mainly due to a moderately reduced risk for CVD mortality and was independent of caffeine intake. By contrast, coffee consumption was not statistically significantly associated with risk for cancer death after adjustment for potential confounders. Decaffeinated coffee consumption was associated with a small reduction in all-cause and CVD mortality. LIMITATION: Coffee consumption was estimated from self-report; thus, some measurement error is inevitable. CONCLUSION: Regular coffee consumption was not associated with an increased mortality rate in either men or women. The possibility of a modest benefit of coffee consumption on all-cause and CVD mortality needs to be further investigated.

Abstract Source: Ann Intern Med. 2008 Jun 17;148(12):904-14. PMID: 18559841

Consumption of coffee during pregnancy was associated with a higher risk of fetal death, especially losses occurring after 20 completed weeks of gestation

The authors conducted a cohort study within the Danish National Birth Cohort to determine whether coffee consumption during pregnancy is associated with late fetal death (spontaneous abortion and stillbirth). A total of 88,482 pregnant women recruited from March 1996 to November 2002 participated in a comprehensive interview on coffee consumption and potentially confounding factors in pregnancy. Information on pregnancy outcome was obtained from the National Hospital Discharge Register and medical records. The authors detected 1,102 fetal deaths. High levels of coffee consumption were associated with an increased risk of fetal death. Relative to nonconsumers of coffee, the adjusted hazard ratios for fetal death associated with coffee consumption of 1/2-3, 4-7, and>or =8 cups of coffee per day were 1.03 (95% confidence interval (CI): 0.89, 1.19), 1.33 (95% CI: 1.08, 1.63), and 1.59 (95% CI: 1.19, 2.13), respectively. Reverse causation due to unrecognized fetal demise may explain the association between coffee intake and risk of fetal death prior to 20 completed weeks' gestation but not the association with fetal loss following 20 completed weeks' gestation. Consumption of coffee during pregnancy was associated with a higher risk of fetal death, especially losses occurring after 20 completed weeks of gestation.

Abstract Source: Am J Epidemiol. 2005 Nov 15;162(10):983-90. Epub 2005 Oct 5. PMID: 16207803

Coffee consumption (decaffeinated and caffeinated) results in lowered organ weight and behavioral changes in offspring

Offspring of rats fed coffee during pregnancy had reduced body, liver, and brain weight at birth. By 30 days postnatally these animals had recovered in size but exhibited increased locomotion, decreased grooming time, and decreased time spent with a novel object. Offspring of dams fed decaffeinated coffee demonstrated reduced liver weight at birth and similar behavioral characteristics at 30 days of age.

Abstract Source: J Nutr. 1982 Apr ;112(4):829-32. PMID: 7069517

Drinking Coffee Kills Pain, Lifts Mood and Sharpens the Mind

New clinical research confirms why office work and coffee go so closely hand in hand. The new study published in the journal BMC Research Notes found that drinking coffee reduces the development of pain during computer work.

Study participants who had consumed coffee (1/2-1 cup) on average 1 hour and 18 minutes before performing a simulated computer office-work task found to provoke pain in the neck, shoulders, forearms and wrists, were found to have "attenuated pain development compared with the subjects who had abstained from coffee intake."

While the researchers attributed the observed effect to the caffeine content in coffee, we believe there is more going on here...

 In a previous post on coffee as both drug and medicine, we looked at the opiate-like properties of an oil-soluble component within both caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee called cafestrol which likely acts as a pain-killer. Because the average cup of coffee contains five times the amount required to produce an opioid effect (as measured by ED50), it would appear that the pain-killing effect in coffee is not just about the caffeine.

We don't, of course, delude ourselves into believing that caffeine isn't an important part of the equation. Caffeine has potent analgesic properties, but may not work as well when separated from the complex (and delightful!) chemistries contained within the fermented and roasted coffee bean.

Indeed, another recent coffee study, involving a total of 50,739 women (mean age, 63 years), found that caffeinated, but not decaffeinated coffee, significantly reduced depression risk. So, take out the caffeine, and the characteristic mood-lifting, anti-depressive properties of this beverage may fade into the background, or disappear.

Coffee also has unique nerve-supporting properties. It contains a compound called trigonelline which promotes neurite outgrowth in neurons. A neurite is any projection from the cell body of a neuron, such as axons and dendrites. Trignonelline's extension of these projections may compensate or rescue damaged neuronal networks, and explain why coffee has a truly therapeutic effect on brain health, and cognition-dependent tasks, e.g. computer work.

Coffee also has powerful antioxidant properties and genoprotective properties. This is important, as stress and environmental stressors, e.g. chemicals, may cause increased oxidative stress and even DNA damage, and this will translate into improved neurological health.

For additional research on coffee's health benefits, view our Coffee Research page which contains study abstracts on over 50 health conditions that may benefit from the responsible consumption of this herb.

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Magic Beverage - Coffee

Coffee is a brewed beverage with a distinct aroma and flavor prepared from the roasted seeds of the Coffea plant. The seeds are found in coffee "cherries", which grow on trees cultivated in over 70 countries, primarily in equatorial Latin America, Southeast Asia, South Asia and Africa. Green (unroasted) coffee is one of the most traded agricultural commodities in the world. Coffee is slightly acidic (5.0–5.1 pH) and can have a stimulating effect on humans because of its caffeine content. It is one of the most-consumed beverages in the world.

Wild coffee's energizing effect was likely first discovered in the northeast region of Ethiopia. Coffee cultivation first took place in southern Arabia; the earliest credible evidence of coffee drinking appears in the middle of the 15th century in the Sufi shrines of Yemen.

Scientific studies have examined the relationship between coffee consumption and an array of medical conditions. Findings have been contradictory as to whether coffee has any specific health benefits, and results are similarly conflicting regarding the potentially harmful effects of coffee consumption. Variations in findings can be at least partially resolved by considering the method of preparation.

   Scientific studies

Coffee use is associated with lower levels of fatty liver

The benefits of coffee on abnormal liver biochemistry, cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma have been reported, but there is a lack of satisfactory explanation. Thus, this study aims to investigate if coffee use has any relationship with bright liver, measured by ultrasound bright liver score (BLS), in patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), and which relationship, if any, is present with BMI and insulin resistance.

 METHODS: This study was performed on 245 patients, 137 with NAFLD and 108 controls. Coffee drinking was defined according to the absolute number of cups of coffee (only espresso coffee), and also graded as 1 (0 cups of coffee/day), 2 (1-2 cups of coffee/day) 3 (>/=3 cups of coffee/day). Insulin resistance was assessed by homoeostasis model-insulin resistance index (HOMA). RESULTS: Less fatty liver involvement is present in coffee vs. non-coffee drinkers. Odds ratios show that obesity, higher insulin resistance, lower HDL cholesterol, older age and arterial hypertension are associated with a greater risk of more severe BLS; to the contrary, coffee drinking is associated with less severe BLS. In the multiple logistic regression (MLR) model, number of cups of coffee, HOMA and BMI account for 35.8% of the variance to BLS. Coffee use is inversely associated with the degree of bright liver, along with insulin resistance and obesity, which, to the contrary, are directly associated with greater likelihood and severity of bright liver appearance. CONCLUSIONS: A possible opposite, if not antagonistic, role of coffee with regard to overweightness and insulin resistance, similar to that reported in hepatocarcinoma and cirrhosis, is envisaged in the natural history of NAFLD.

Abstract Source: Dig Dis Sci. 2010 Feb 18. Epub 2010 Feb 18. PMID: 20165979

Roasting coffee appears to produce unique compounds not found within coffee which have suppressive effects on UV and chemical mutagens

SOS-inducing activity of UV or chemical mutagens (AF-2, 4NQO and MNNG) was strongly suppressed by instant coffee in Salmonella typhimurium TA1535/pSK1002. As decaffeinated instant coffee showed a similarly strong suppressive effect, it would seem that caffeine, a known inhibitor of SOS responses, is not responsible for the effect observed. The suppression was also shown by freshly brewed coffee extracts. However, the suppression was absent in green coffee-bean extracts. These results suggest that coffee contains some substance(s) which, apart from caffeine, suppresses SOS-inducing activity of UV or chemical mutagens and that the suppressive substance(s) are produced by roasting coffee beans.

Abstract Source: Mutat Res. 1986 Oct ;175(2):47-50. PMID: 3093858

Coffee contains compounds which stimulate dopamine release

Coffee and caffeine are known to affect the limbic system, but data on the influence of coffee and coffee constituents on neurotransmitter release is limited. We investigated dopamine release and Ca(2+)-mobilization in pheochromocytoma cells (PC-12 cells) after stimulation with two lyophilized coffee beverages prepared from either Coffea arabica (AR) or Coffea canephora var. robusta (RB) beans and constituents thereof. Both coffee lyophilizates showed effects in dilutions between 1:100 and 1:10,000. To identify the active coffee compound, coffee constituents were tested in beverage and plasma representative concentrations. Caffeine, trigonelline, N-methylpyridinium, chlorogenic acid, catechol, pyrogallol and 5-hydroxytryptamides increased calcium signaling and dopamine release, although with different efficacies. While N-methylpyridinium stimulated the Ca(2+)-mobilization most potently (EC(200): 0.14±0.29μM), treatment of the cells with pyrogallol (EC(200): 48±14nM) or 5-hydroxytryptamides (EC(200): 10±3nM) lead to the most pronounced effect on dopamine release. In contrast, no effect was seen for the reconstituted biomimetic mixture. We therefore conclude that each of the coffee constituents tested stimulated the dopamine release in PC-12 cells. Since no effect was found for their biomimetic mixture, we hypothesize other coffee constituents being responsible for the dopamine release demonstrated for AR and RB coffee brews.

Abstract Source: Food Chem Toxicol. 2011 Oct 13. Epub 2011 Oct 13. PMID: 22019894

Coffee consumption may have a protective/restorative function on diabetic auditory neuropathy

Coffee is a widely consumed beverage and has recently received considerable attention for its possible beneficial effects. Auditory neuropathy is a hearing disorder characterized by an abnormal auditory brainstem response. This study examined the auditory neuropathy induced by diabetes and investigated the action of coffee, trigonelline, and caffeine to determine whether they improved diabetic auditory neuropathy in mice. Auditory brainstem responses, auditory middle latency responses, and otoacoustic emissions were evaluated to assess auditory neuropathy. Coffee or trigonelline ameliorated the hearing threshold shift and delayed latency of the auditory evoked potential in diabetic neuropathy. These findings demonstrate that diabetes can produce a mouse model of auditory neuropathy and that coffee consumption potentially facilitates recovery from diabetes-induced auditory neuropathy. Furthermore, the active constituent in coffee may be trigonelline.

Abstract Source: Neurosci Lett. 2008 Aug 29;441(3):302-6. Epub 2008 Jun 22. PMID: 18586072

Coffee's antidiabetic activity may be due in part to its ability to inhibit the reactivation of hyperglycemic glucorticoids, e.g. cortisol

Recent epidemiological studies demonstrated a beneficial effect of coffee consumption for the prevention of type 2 diabetes, however, the underlying mechanisms remained unknown. We demonstrate that coffee extract, corresponding to an Italian Espresso, inhibits recombinant and endogenous 11beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 1 (11beta-HSD1) activity. The inhibitory component is heat-stable with considerable polarity. Coffee extract blocked 11beta-HSD1-dependent cortisol formation, prevented the subsequent nuclear translocation of the glucocorticoid receptor and abolished glucocorticoid-induced expression of the key gluconeogenic enzyme phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase. We suggest that at least part of the anti-diabetic effects of coffee consumption is due to inhibition of 11beta-HSD1-dependent glucocorticoid reactivation.

Abstract Source: FEBS Lett. 2006 Jul 24;580(17):4081-5. Epub 2006 Jun 27. PMID: 16814782

Coffee appears to have a beneficial effect on pulmonary function, among non-smokers

Coffee contains polyphenolic antioxidants and caffeine, which may favorably affect pulmonary function. Therefore, the authors studied cross-sectional associations (1987-1989) between coffee intake and pulmonary function in the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities Study, a population-based cohort study (analytic sample = 10,658). They also conducted analyses stratified by smoking status, since smoking is a strong risk factor for respiratory disease and could influence the effects of caffeine and antioxidants. Self-reported coffee intake was categorized as rare/never,<7 cups/week, 1 cup/day, 2-3 cups/day, and>or=4 cups/day. Pulmonary function was characterized by the spirometric measures forced vital capacity (FVC) and forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV(1)). After adjustment for demographic factors, lifestyle characteristics, and dietary factors, pulmonary function values increased across increasing categories of coffee consumption in never and former smokers but not in current smokers. In never or former smokers who consumed>or=4 cups of coffee daily, FVC and FEV(1) were 2%-3% greater than in never or former smokers who rarely/never consumed coffee (P(trend) values: in never smokers, 0.04 for FVC and 0.07 for FEV(1); in former smokers,<0.001 for FVC and<0.001 for FEV(1)). These data show a possible beneficial effect of coffee (or a coffee ingredient) on pulmonary function, but it appears to be limited to nonsmokers.

Abstract Source: Int J Cancer. 2010 Oct 15;127(8):1758-68. PMID: 19372215

Coffee's chemopreventive properties may be due to induction of cellular defenses and alteration of phase 1 detoxification enzymes

Coffee consumption has been associated with a significant decrease in the risk of developing chronic diseases such as Parkinson disease, diabetes type-2 and several types of cancers (e.g. colon, liver). In the present study, a coffee-dependent induction of enzymes involved in xenobiotic detoxification processes was observed in rat liver and primary hepatocytes. In addition, coffee was found to induce the mRNA and protein expression of enzymes involved in cellular antioxidant defenses. These inductions were correlated with the activation of the Nrf2 transcription factor as shown using an ARE-reporter luciferase assay. The induction of detoxifying enzymes GSTs and AKR is compatible with a protection against both genotoxicity and cytotoxicity of aflatoxin B1 (AFB1). This hypothesis was confirmed in in vitro and ex vivo test systems, where coffee reduced both AFB1-DNA and protein adducts. Interestingly, coffee was also found to inhibit cytochrome CYP1A1/2, indicating that other mechanisms different from a stimulation of detoxification may also play a significant role in the chemoprotective effects of coffee. Further investigations in either human liver cell line and primary hepatocytes indicated that the chemoprotective effects of coffee against AFB1 genotoxicity are likely to be of relevance for humans. These data strongly suggest that coffee may protect against the adverse effects of AFB1. In addition, the coffee-mediated stimulation of the Nrf2-ARE pathway resulting in increased endogenous defense mechanisms against electrophilic but also oxidative insults further support that coffee may be associated with a protection against various types of chemical stresses.

Abstract Source: Food Chem Toxicol. 2008 Apr;46(4):1239-48. Epub 2007 Sep 26. PMID: 17976884

Coffee demonstrates antiviral activity against HSV-1

Both hot water extracts of coffee grinds and instant coffee solutions inhibited the multiplication of herpes simplex virus type 1, a representative enveloped DNA virus, when they were added to the culture medium of the virus-infected cells at a dose of one fifth the concentration suitable for drinking. The antiherpetic activity was independent of the suppliers (companies) of the coffee grinds and of the locations where the coffee beans were produced. Further characterization revealed that there are two different mechanisms, by which the coffee extracts exert inhibitory activities on the virus infection; (1) a direct inactivation of the infectivity of virus particle (i.e., a virucidal activity) and (2) the inhibition of progeny infectious virus formation at the late stage of viral multiplication in the infected cells. Caffeine, but not quinic acid and chlorogenic acid, inhibited the virus multiplication to some extent, but none of them showed the virucidal activity, suggesting that other component(s) in the coffee extracts must play a role in the observed antiviral activity. In addition, the coffee extracts inhibited the multiplication of poliovirus, a non-enveloped RNA virus, but showed no virucidal effect on this virus.

Abstract Source: Food Chem Toxicol. 2008 Jun;46(6):1919-24. Epub 2008 Jan 26. PMID: 18314244

The consumption of coffe increases the metabolic activity and/or numbers of the Bifidobacterium spp. population

The impact of a moderate consumption of an instant coffee on the general composition of the human intestinal bacterial population was assessed in this study. Sixteen (16) healthy adult volunteers consumed a daily dose of 3 cups of coffee during 3 weeks. Faecal samples were collected before and after the consumption of coffee, and the impact of the ingestion of the product on the intestinal bacteria as well as the quantification of specific bacterial groups was assessed using nucleic acid-based methods. Although faecal profiles of the dominant microbiota were not significantly affected after the consumption of the coffee (Dice's similarity index=92%, n=16), the population of Bifidobacterium spp. increased after the 3-week test period (P=0.02). Moreover, in some subjects, there was a specific increase in the metabolic activity of Bifidobacterium spp. Our results show that the consumption of the coffee preparation resulting from water co-extraction of green and roasted coffee beans produce an increase in the metabolic activity and/or numbers of the Bifidobacterium spp. population, a bacterial group of reputed beneficial effects, without major impact on the dominant microbiota.

Abstract Source: Int J Food Microbiol. 2009 Mar 31;130(2):117-21. Epub 2009 Jan 23. PMID: 19217682

The second part - here

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Scientist that discovered GMO health hazards immediately fired, team dismantled

Contrary to the belief of some in the scientific community, Dr Arpad Pusztai does not have horns or a malevolent cackle. Nor does he inhabit an imposing gothic mansion bought with the proceeds of guest appearances as an eco-hero. In fact, he lives in a modest semi in Aberdeen.

This elderly man is one of the most divisive figures in biology. Many blame him for tilting the balance in the PR battle over GM food towards public rejection. His research on GM potatoes - which came explosively into the public spotlight in a World in Action programme in August 1998 - has been dismissed as poorly done, muddled and even fabricated. Yet to anti-GM campaigners he is a hero - the scientist who stood up to the establishment and, as a result, had his career squashed at the behest of shadowy forces in the GM industry and the government.

"I think it did a lot of damage because ... the vast majority of people were somewhat neutral at the time," said Professor Chris Leaver, a plant scientist and strong supporter of GM at Oxford University. "I think the NGOs ... decided that they would make a play using him. I think he got hijacked and then he got out of his depth."

The affair finished off Pusztai's research career (although at the time he was already 69) and affected his health. His supporters were appalled by his treatment at the hands of the publicly funded Rowett Research Institute in Aberdeen, which he had served with distinction for most of his career. He was regarded as a world expert on plant lectins - defensive proteins that kill insects and other invaders - with over 300 scientific papers, including two in the prestigious journal Nature.

"I would have characterised [his treatment] as disgraceful. I don't see how any reputable scientist ... could be treated in this way," said Dr Stanley Ewen, a pathologist who was then at the University of Aberdeen and who worked with Pusztai.

Having said of GM food in 1998: "If I had the choice I would certainly not eat it", and that "I find it's very unfair to use our fellow citizens as guinea pigs", it's easy to imagine Pusztai was ideologically opposed to GM. But this is far from the truth, he tells me. "I'm strictly science-based ... It is not an ideology for me." Still, he confesses that his opposition to the technology has hardened over the years, and he still won't eat it. "Even now, I am not a campaigner. I have never belonged to any organisation campaigning for or against it."

                                            Arpad Pusztai

He felt he had a duty to speak out, "just to inject some caution into this business", he says. "Make no mistake, this is an irreversible technology. It is no good 50 years later to say: 'We should have known.'"

  Concerns aired

Pusztai clearly wanted his concerns to be aired publicly, but he does not come across as a man who relished or courted publicity. He was very happy, for example, that the institute's director, Philip James, shielded him from interview requests. "I was quite happy with this ... I am an academic scientist. I've never been exposed to this," he says, "I'm really not a very media person."

Pusztai says James, on the other hand, was anxious to exploit the media attention. "The director kept running around like a blue-arsed fly. This was a tremendous public relations business for him."

James even put in a complimentary phone call to Pusztai that August evening. "I telephoned Pusztai immediately after the broadcast to congratulate him on the modest way in which he had presented the evidence on the programme," says James, although he denies relishing the publicity. He says he had grave doubts about the interview going ahead in the first place.

By this stage, Pusztai was feeling extremely uncomfortable about what he was hearing on news bulletins about his own research. "I heard things that really disturbed me," he says. "My head was buzzing ... the whole thing was getting totally out of hand."

The results that Pusztai had hinted at in his interview were a comparison of rats fed ordinary potatoes and potatoes that had been genetically modified with a lectin from snowdrops. The rats on the GM diet grew less well and had immune problems even though the lectin itself caused no adverse effects at high concentrations. His conclusion was that the GM process had somehow made the potatoes less nutritious. The GM potatoes were not a commercial variety and were never intended for human consumption, but the lectin modification - which made them poisonous to insects - was an experimental model for other GM varieties.

But newspaper stories generated confusion over the nature of the genetic modification. These articles refer to potatoes modified with a lectin gene from jackbean that is poisonous to mammals. But no one can agree on where this came from. The misinformation was formalised in a press release issued by the Rowett. James says Pusztai approved it. Pusztai says he was not aware of it until it was published. Either way, the jackbean experiments that never were have proved extremely damaging to Pusztai. Even now, GM scientists dismiss Pusztai's work on the grounds of a supposed schoolboy error: of course the rats suffered, they say, they were being fed potatoes that were genetically modified to produce a poison.

The day after the World in Action programme, Pusztai's boss changed his mood from congratulation to condemnation. "My change in attitude was dramatic because I discovered that Pusztai ... had never conducted the studies which he had claimed," says James, an accusation that Pusztai strongly denies. He says he never claimed to have done the jackbean experiments. "He just simply wanted to put a real cap on it," says Pusztai. "The simplest way to do it was to suspend all research activities into this business." Pusztai's supporters claim that James came under pressure from Downing Street to put a lid on the affair.

   Suspended and silenced

James suspended Pusztai and used misconduct procedures to seize his data. Pusztai's rolling annual contract was not renewed and he was banned from speaking publicly. Pusztai says he wanted to publish his results but was concerned that James would veto any approach to an academic journal.

In 1998, if James had hoped that gagging Pusztai would make the affair go away he was wrong. Continued media speculation was doing considerable damage to public confidence in GM food and this prompted the Royal Society - the UK's premier scientific academy - to enter the fray.

Although none of Pusztai's results had yet been published, it set about reviewing the information that did exist - an internal report written by Pusztai, an audit of the data produced by the Rowett, and an independent statistical analysis carried out by Biomathematics and Statistics Scotland. The data was sent to six anonymous reviewers. The subsequent report savaged Pusztai's results, but he remains defiant.

The Royal Society putdown was predictable. The reviewers had placed a hotchpotch of lab reports and statistical analyses that were never intended for publication under intense scrutiny. "There was practically nothing in it but numbers," says Pusztai. He and Ewen point out that peer reviewers had praised the methodological details of the experiment when their application for a £1.6m research grant from the Scottish Office was given the go-ahead.

Some of the disputed data did eventually see the light of day in October 1999, when Ewen and Puztai published a paper in the prestigious medical journal the Lancet. Because of its controversial nature, the data paper was seen by six reviewers - three times the usual number. Five gave it the green light. The paper - which used data held by Ewen and so was not subject to veto by James - showed that rats fed on potatoes genetically modified with the snowdrop lectin had unusual changes to their gut tissue compared with rats fed on normal potatoes. It has been criticised on the grounds that the unmodified potatoes were not a fair control diet.

I put it to Pusztai that he is demanding a level of testing for GM food that is not applied to conventional plant breeding. Radiation and mutation-causing chemicals, for example, are standard techniques used to create new varieties, and both can create unexpected genetic changes. He bats this away. "Two negatives don't make a positive," he responds. "It doesn't mean that I agree with those techniques."

The difference with GM, he says, is that there is a political agenda at work. "Ninety-five per cent of GM is coming from America, so naturally it is in their interests to push it," he says, "I have no ideological grounds against Monsanto [the biotechnology company]. For me it's a scientific argument. They have not done a proper job [of testing], and they are just using their political and economic muscle to foist it on us."

Does he regret speaking publicly about his research prior to publication - generally regarded as a cardinal sin by scientists? "No," he says. "I was publicly funded and I thought the public had a right to know." He also rejects the notion that he would have achieved more by waiting until the science was in print. Since he went public, he estimates he has given between 150 and 200 lectures around the world. And in 2005 he was honoured with a whistleblower award from the Federation of German Scientists.

"Even our best scientific publications - I don't think they are read by more than 50 people," he says. "This had impact ... to my damage, but it had impact."

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High dietary antioxidants might cut the risk of pancreatic cancer

One in 12 instances of pancreatic cancer might be prevented, say researchers from the University of East Anglia.

An increased dietary intake of all of vitamins C, E and selenium could help cut the risk of developing pancreatic cancer by up to two thirds in those eating low amounts in their diet, suggests research published online in the journal Gut.

These nutrients are known as antioxidants and are present in several food types, including cereals, nuts, fruits and vegetables.


If the association turns out to be causal, one in 12 of these cancers might be prevented, suggest the researchers at the University of East Anglia’s Norwich Medical School, who are leading the Norfolk arm of the European Prospective Investigation of Cancer (EPIC) study.

Cancer of the pancreas kills more than a quarter of a million people every year around the world, and 7,500 people are diagnosed with the disease every year in the UK, where it is the six commonest cause of cancer death.

The disease has the worst prognosis of any cancer, with just three per cent of people surviving beyond five years. Genes, smoking, and type 2 diabetes are all risk factors, but diet is also thought to have a role, and may explain why rates vary so much from country to country, say the authors.

The researchers tracked the health of more than 23,500 40 to 74 year olds, who had entered the Norfolk arm of the EPIC study between 1993 and 1997.

Each participant filled in a comprehensive food diary, detailing the types and amount of every food they ate for seven days, as well as the methods they used to prepare it.

Each entry in the food diary was matched to one of 11,000 food items and the nutrient values calculated using a specially designed computer programme (DINER).

Foods rich in selenium may have different effects on the health of suplementata because of its completeness.

Forty nine people (55 per cent men) developed pancreatic cancer within 10 years of entering the study. This increased to 86 (44 per cent men) by 2010. On average, they survived six months after diagnosis.

The nutrient intakes of those diagnosed with the disease within 10 years of entering EPIC were compared with those of almost 4,000 healthy people to see if there were any differences.

The analysis showed that a weekly intake of selenium in the top 25 per cent of consumption roughly halved the risk of developing pancreatic cancer compared with an intake in the bottom 25 per cent.

And those whose vitamins C, E, and selenium intake was in the top 25 per cent of consumption were 67 per cent less likely to develop pancreatic cancer than those who were in the bottom 25 per cent.

If the link turns out to be causal that would add up to the prevention of more than one in 12 (eight per cent) of pancreatic cancers, calculate the authors.

Dr Andrew Hart, lead researcher in UEA’s Norwich Medical School, said: “Antioxidants may work by neutralising carcinogens in cigarette smoke and also blocking toxic free radicals formed from the by-products of metabolism. Other possible protective mechanisms include stimulating the immune system response.”

Other trials using antioxidant supplements have not produced such encouraging results, but this may be because food sources of these nutrients may behave differently from those found in supplements.

Dr Hart said: “If a causal association is confirmed by reporting consistent findings from other epidemiological studies, then population based dietary recommendations may help to prevent pancreatic cancer.”

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World in Serious Trouble on Food Front

In the early spring of 2012, U.S. farmers were on their way to planting some 96 million acres in corn, the most in 75 years. A warm early spring got the crop off to a great start. Analysts were predicting the largest corn harvest on record.

The U.S. is the leading producer and exporter of corn, the world’s feedgrain. At home, corn accounts for four-fifths of the U.S. grain harvest. Internationally, the U.S. corn crop exceeds China’s rice and wheat harvests combined. Among the big three grains—corn, wheat and rice—corn is now the leader, with production well above that of wheat and nearly double that of rice.

The corn plant is as sensitive as it is productive. Thirsty and fast-growing, it is vulnerable to both extreme heat and drought. At elevated temperatures, the corn plant, which is normally so productive, goes into thermal shock.

As spring turned into summer, the thermometer began to rise across the Corn Belt. In St. Louis, Missouri, in the southern Corn Belt, the temperature in late June and early July climbed to 100 degrees Fahrenheit or higher 10 days in a row. For the past several weeks, the Corn Belt has been blanketed with dehydrating heat.

Weekly drought maps published by the University of Nebraska show the drought-stricken area spreading across more and more of the country until, by mid-July, it engulfed virtually the entire Corn Belt. Soil moisture readings in the Corn Belt are now among the lowest ever recorded.

While temperature, rainfall and drought serve as indirect indicators of crop growing conditions, each week the U.S. Department of Agriculture releases a report on the actual state of the corn crop. This year the early reports were promising. On May 21, 77 percent of the U.S. corn crop was rated as good to excellent. The following week the share of the crop in this category dropped to 72 percent. Over the next eight weeks, it dropped to 26 percent, one of the lowest ratings on record. The other 74 percent is rated very poor to fair. And the crop is still deteriorating.

Over a span of weeks, we have seen how the more extreme weather events that come with climate change can affect food security. Since the beginning of June, corn prices have increased by nearly one half, reaching an all-time high on July 19.

Although the world was hoping for a good U.S. harvest to replenish dangerously low grain stocks, this is no longer in the cards. World carryover stocks of grain will fall further at the end of this crop year, making the food situation even more precarious. Food prices, already elevated, will follow the price of corn upward, quite possibly to record highs.

Not only is the current food situation deteriorating, but so is the global food system itself. We saw early signs of the unraveling in 2008 following an abrupt doubling of world grain prices. As world food prices climbed, exporting countries began restricting grain exports to keep their domestic food prices down. In response, governments of importing countries panicked. Some of them turned to buying or leasing land in other countries on which to produce food for themselves.

Welcome to the new geopolitics of food scarcity. As food supplies tighten, we are moving into a new food era, one in which it is every country for itself.

The world is in serious trouble on the food front. But there is little evidence that political leaders have yet grasped the magnitude of what is happening. The progress in reducing hunger in recent decades has been reversed. Unless we move quickly to adopt new population, energy and water policies, the goal of eradicating hunger will remain just that.

Time is running out. The world may be much closer to an unmanageable food shortage—replete with soaring food prices, spreading food unrest and ultimately political instability—than most people realize.

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Grapefruit Seed Extract - Not What You Think It Is!

   What is it?

Grapefruit Seed Extract or GSE is a synthetic combination of grapefruit pulp and chemicals. Yes, you read that correctly...chemicals. It is not all natural, much to my dismay.

   How is it made?

GSE is made by taking the pulp, not necessarily seeds, from grapefruit juice production and in a multi step industrial chemical process change the natural phenolic compounds into synthetic quaternary ammonium compounds. Added chemicals and heat are used in this process, chemicals you would never knowingly sign up to put into your body, especially if you are of the type to be searching out a natural, alternative remedy. 

   Some of the chemicals used in this process are:

ammonium chloride (Material Safety Data Sheet here)

benzethonium chloride (Material Safety Data Sheet here)

triclosan (Material Safety Data Sheet here)

methyl paraben (Environmental Working Group's information here)

According to a report from the Institute of Pharmacy, Ernst Moritz Arndt University, Greifswald, Germany:

“The antimicrobial efficacy as well as the content of preservative agents of six commercial grapefruit seed extracts were examined. Five of the six extracts showed a high growth-inhibiting activity against the test germs. In all of the antimicrobial active grapefruit seed extracts, the preservative benzethonium chloride was detected by thin layer chromatography. Additionally, three extracts contained the preserving substances triclosan and methyl paraben. In only one of the grapefruit seed extracts tested no preservative agent was found. However, with this extract as well as with several self-made extracts from seed and juiceless pulp of grapefruits (Citrus paradisi), no antimicrobial activity could be detected. Thus, it is concluded that the potent as well as nearly universal antimicrobial activity being attributed to grapefruit seed extract is merely due to the synthetic preservative agents contained within. Natural products with antimicrobial activity do not appear to be present.”

The USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) did a study following up that of the one mentioned above out of Germany and found:

“Confirming an earlier study by researchers in Germany we found that some commercial grapefruit seed extracts contain benzethonium chloride, a synthetic antimicrobial agent commonly used in cosmetics and only approved for topical use, at relatively high levels of 8%.”

Many of you may have expected a post about how wonderful GSE is, and the myriad of ailments it has been known to treat. Knowing what I do now, after researching, I cannot in good conscience recommend anyone use GSE. Unfortunately the word "natural" is not regulated by any agency, and thus can be used on any product. Lead is all natural, so is tar, but you wouldn't spray them in your mouth to treat a sore throat. It's unfortunate in many ways that what we as consumers are led to believe is truly a natural product is made by synthetic means, in a laboratory, using synthetic harmful chemicals, and this process is not being regulated. I do not personally hope for regulation, I hope for education. The FDA will not ever have my stamp of approval nor my trust. Only me.

The patent for making Grapefruit Seed Extract clearly states that Triclosan is added:

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Microwave Ovens - The Proven Dangers

In short, microwaves distort the moleclular structure of the foods. They destroy much of the nutrients and cause many other problems with the immune system over a period of time. If you love your family read this and take the extra couple of minutes to heat the food up the right way.

   Radiation Ovens

The Proven Dangers of Microwaves

Is it possible that millions of people are ignorantly sacrificing their health in exchange for the convenience of microwave ovens? Why did the Soviet Union ban the use of microwave ovens in 1976? Who invented microwave ovens, and why? The answers to these questions may shock you into throwing your microwave oven in the trash.

Over 90% of American homes have microwave ovens used for meal preparation. Because microwave ovens are so convenient and energy efficient, as compared to conventional ovens, very few homes or restaurants are without them. In general, people believe that whatever a microwave oven does to foods cooked in it doesn't have any negative effect on either the food or them. Of course, if microwave ovens were really harmful, our government would never allow them on the market, would they? Would they? Regardless of what has been "officially" released concerning microwave ovens, we have personally stopped using ours based on the research facts outlined in this article.

The purpose of this report is to show proof - evidence - that microwave cooking is not natural, nor healthy, and is far more dangerous to the human body than anyone could imagine. However, the microwave oven manufacturers, Washington City politics, and plain old human nature are suppressing the facts and evidence. Because of this, people are continuing to microwave their food - in blissful ignorance - without knowing the effects and danger of doing so.

   How do microwave ovens work?

Microwaves are a form of electromagnetic energy, like light waves or radio waves, and occupy a part of the electromagnetic spectrum of power, or energy. Microwaves are very short waves of electromagnetic energy that travel at the speed of light (186,282 miles per second). In our modern technological age, microwaves are used to relay long distance telephone signals, television programs, and computer information across the earth or to a satellite in space. But the microwave is most familiar to us as an energy source for cooking food.

Every microwave oven contains a magnetron, a tube in which electrons are affected by magnetic and electric fields in such a way as to produce micro wavelength radiation at about 2450 Mega Hertz (MHz) or 2.45 Giga Hertz (GHz). This microwave radiation interacts with the molecules in food. All wave energy changes polarity from positive to negative with each cycle of the wave. In microwaves, these polarity changes happen millions of times every second. Food molecules - especially the molecules of water - have a positive and negative end in the same way a magnet has a north and a south polarity.

In commercial models, the oven has a power input of about 1000 watts of alternating current. As these microwaves generated from the magnetron bombard the food, they cause the polar molecules to rotate at the same frequency millions of times a second. All this agitation creates molecular friction, which heats up the food. The friction also causes substantial damage to the surrounding molecules, often tearing them apart or forcefully deforming them. The scientific name for this deformation is "structural isomerism".

By comparison, microwaves from the sun are based on principles of pulsed direct current (DC) that don't create frictional heat; microwave ovens use alternating current (AC) creating frictional heat. A microwave oven produces a spiked wavelength of energy with all the power going into only one narrow frequency of the energy spectrum. Energy from the sun operates in a wide frequency spectrum.

Many terms are used in describing electromagnetic waves, such as wavelength, amplitude, cycle and frequency:
~ Wavelength determines the type of radiation, i.e. radio, X-ray, ultraviolet, visible, infrared, etc.
~ Amplitude determines the extent of movement measured from the starting point.
~ Cycle determines the unit of frequency, such as cycles per second, Hertz, Hz, or cycles/second.
~ Frequency determines the number of occurrences within a given time period (usually 1 second); The number of occurrences of a recurring process per unit of time, i.e. the number of repetitions of cycles per second.

   Radiation = spreading energy with electromagnetic waves

Radiation, as defined by physics terminology, is "the electromagnetic waves emitted by the atoms and molecules of a radioactive substance as a result of nuclear decay." Radiation causes ionization, which is what occurs when a neutral atom gains or loses electrons. In simpler terms, a microwave oven decays and changes the molecular structure of the food by the process of radiation. Had the manufacturers accurately called them "radiation ovens", it's doubtful they would have ever sold one, but that's exactly what a microwave oven is.

We've all been told that microwaving food is not the same as irradiating it (radiation "treatment"). The two processes are supposed to use completely different waves of energy and at different intensities. No FDA or officially released government studies have proven current microwaving usage to be harmful, but we all know that the validity of studies can be - and are sometimes deliberately - limiting. Many of these studies are later proven to be inaccurate. As consumers, we're supposed to have a certain degree of common sense to use in judgment.

Take the example of eggs and how they were "proven" to be so harmful to our health in the late 1960's. This brought about imitation egg products and big profits for the manufacturers, while egg farms went broke. Now, recent government sponsored studies are saying that eggs are not bad for us after all. So, whom should we believe and what criteria should we use to decide matters concerning our health? Since it's currently published that microwaves - purportedly - don't leak into the environment, when properly used and with approved design, the decision lies with each consumer as to whether or not you choose to eat food heated by a microwave oven or even purchase one in the first place.

   Motherly instincts are right

On a more humorous side, the "sixth sense" every mother has is impossible to argue with. Have you ever tried it? Children will never win against a mother's intuition. It's like trying to argue with the arm - appearing out of nowhere - that pinned you to the back of the seat when your mother slammed on the brakes.

Many of us come from a generation where mothers and grandmothers have distrusted the modern "inside out" cooking they claimed was "not suitable" for most foods. My mother refused to even try baking anything in a microwave. She also didn't like the way a cup of coffee tasted when heated in a microwave oven. I have to fully agree and can't argue either fact.

Her own common sense and instincts told her that there was no way microwave cooking could be natural nor make foods "taste they way they're supposed to". Reluctantly, even my mother succumbed to re-heating leftovers in a microwave due to her work schedule before she retired.

Many others feel the same way, but they're considered an "old fashioned" minority dating back to before the 1970's when microwaves first overwhelmed the market. Like most young adults at the time, as microwave ovens became commonplace, I chose to ignore my mother's intuitive wisdom and joined the majority who believed microwave cooking was far too convenient to ever believe anything could be wrong with it. Chalk one up for mom's perception, because even though she didn't know the scientific, technical, or health reasons why, she just knew that microwave ovens were not good based on how foods tasted when they were cooked in them. She didn't like the way the texture of the microwaved food changed either.

   Microwaves unsafe for baby's milk

A number of warnings have been made public, but have been barely noticed. For example, Young Families, the Minnesota Extension Service of the university of Minnesota, published the following in 1989:

"Although microwaves heat food quickly, they are not recommended for heating a baby's bottle. The bottle may seem cool to the touch, but the liquid inside may become extremely hot and could burn the baby's mouth and throat. Also, the buildup of steam in a closed container, such as a baby bottle, could cause it to explode. Heating the bottle in a microwave can cause slight changes in the milk. In infant formulas, there may be a loss of some vitamins. In expressed breast milk, some protective properties may be destroyed. Warming a bottle by holding it under tap water, or by setting it in a bowl of warm water, then testing it on your wrist before feeding may take a few minutes longer, but it is much safer."

Dr. Lita Lee of Hawaii reported in the December 9, 1989 Lancet:

"Microwaving baby formulas converted certain trans-amino acids into their synthetic cis-isomers. Synthetic isomers, whether cis-amino acids or trans-fatty acids, are not biologically active. Further, one of the amino acids, L-proline, was converted to its d-isomer, which is known to be neurotoxic (poisonous to the nervous system) and nephrotoxic (poisonous to the kidneys). It's bad enough that many babies are not nursed, but now they are given fake milk (baby formula) made even more toxic via microwaving."

   Microwaved blood kills patient

In 1991, there was a lawsuit in Oklahoma concerning the hospital use of a microwave oven to warm blood needed in a transfusion. The case involved a hip surgery patient, Norma Levitt, who died from a simple blood transfusion. It seems the nurse had warmed the blood in a microwave oven.

This tragedy makes it very apparent that there's much more to "heating" with microwaves than we've been led to believe. Blood for transfusions is routinely warmed, but not in microwave ovens. In the case of Mrs. Levitt, the microwaving altered the blood and it killed her.

It's very obvious that this form of microwave radiation "heating" does something to the substances it heats. It's also becoming quite apparent that people who process food in a microwave oven are also ingesting these "unknowns".

Because the body is electrochemical in nature, any force that disrupts or changes human electrochemical events will affect the physiology of the body. This is further described in Robert O. Becker's book, The Body Electric, and in Ellen Sugarman's book, Warning, the Electricity Around You May Be Hazardous to Your Health.

   Scientific evidence and facts

In Comparative Study of Food Prepared Conventionally and in the Microwave Oven, published by Raum & Zelt in 1992, at 3(2): 43, it states

"A basic hypothesis of natural medicine states that the introduction into the human body of molecules and energies, to which it is not accustomed, is much more likely to cause harm than good. Microwaved food contains both molecules and energies not present in food cooked in the way humans have been cooking food since the discovery of fire. Microwave energy from the sun and other stars is direct current based. Artificially produced microwaves, including those in ovens, are produced from alternating current and force a billion or more polarity reversals per second in every food molecule they hit. Production of unnatural molecules is inevitable. Naturally occurring amino acids have been observed to undergo isomeric changes (changes in shape morphing) as well as transformation into toxic forms, under the impact of microwaves produced in ovens.

One short-term study found significant and disturbing changes in the blood of individuals consuming microwaved milk and vegetables. Eight volunteers ate various combinations of the same foods cooked different ways. All foods that were processed through the microwave ovens caused changes in the blood of the volunteers. Hemoglobin levels decreased and over all white cell levels and cholesterol levels increased. Lymphocytes decreased.

Luminescent (light-emitting) bacteria were employed to detect energetic changes in the blood. Significant increases were found in the luminescence of these bacteria when exposed to blood serum obtained after the consumption of microwaved food."

   The Swiss clinical study

Dr. Hans ulrich Hertel, who is now retired, worked as a food scientist for many years with one of the major Swiss food companies that do business on a global scale. A few years ago, he was fired from his job for questioning certain processing procedures that denatured the food.

In 1991, he and a Lausanne university professor published a research paper indicating that food cooked in microwave ovens could pose a greater risk to health than food cooked by conventional means. An article also appeared in issue 19 of the Journal Franz Weber in which it was stated that the consumption of food cooked in microwave ovens had cancerous effects on the blood. The research paper itself followed the article. On the cover of the magazine there was a picture of the Grim Reaper holding a microwave oven in one of his hands.

Dr. Hertel was the first scientist to conceive and carry out a quality clinical study on the effects microwaved nutrients have on the blood and physiology of the human body. His small, but well controlled, study showed the degenerative force produced in microwave ovens and the food processed in them. The scientific conclusion showed that microwave cooking changed the nutrients in the food; and, changes took place in the participants' blood that could cause deterioration in the human system. Hertel's scientific study was done along with Dr. Bernard H. Blanc of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology and the university Institute for Biochemistry.

In intervals of two to five days, the volunteers in the study received one of the following food variants on an empty stomach: (1) raw milk; (2) the same milk conventionally cooked; (3) pasteurized milk; (4) the same raw milks cooked in a microwave oven; (5) raw vegetables from an organic farm; (6) the same vegetables cooked conventionally; (7) the same vegetables frozen and defrosted in a microwave oven; and (8) the same vegetables cooked in the microwave oven. Once the volunteers were isolated, blood samples were taken from every volunteer immediately before eating. Then, blood samples were taken at defined intervals after eating from the above milk or vegetable preparations.

Significant changes were discovered in the blood samples from the intervals following the foods cooked in the microwave oven. These changes included a decrease in all hemoglobin and cholesterol values, especially the ratio of HDL (good cholesterol) and LDL (bad cholesterol) values. Lymphocytes (white blood cells) showed a more distinct short-term decrease following the intake of microwaved food than after the intake of all the other variants. Each of these indicators pointed to degeneration.

Additionally, there was a highly significant association between the amount of microwave energy in the test foods and the luminous power of luminescent bacteria exposed to serum from test persons who ate that food.

This led Dr. Hertel to the conclusion that such technically derived energies may, indeed, be passed along to man inductively via eating microwaved food. According to Dr. Hertel, "Leukocytosis, which cannot be accounted for by normal daily deviations, is taken very seriously by hemotologists. Leukocytes are often signs of pathogenic effects on the living system, such as poisoning and cell damage. The increase of leukocytes with the microwaved foods were more pronounced than with all the other variants. It appears that these marked increases were caused entirely by ingesting the microwaved substances.

"This process is based on physical principles and has already been confirmed in the literature. The apparent additional energy exhibited by the luminescent bacteria was merely an extra confirmation. There is extensive scientific literature concerning the hazardous effects of direct microwave radiation on living systems. It is astonishing, therefore, to realize how little effort has been taken to replace this detrimental technique of microwaves with technology more in accordance with nature.

Technically produced microwaves are based on the principle of alternating current. Atoms, molecules, and cells hit by this hard electromagnetic radiation are forced to reverse polarity 1-100 billion times a second. There are no atoms, molecules or cells of any organic system able to withstand such a violent, destructive power for any extended period of time, not even in the low energy range of milliwatts.

Of all the natural substances -- which are polar -- the oxygen of water molecules reacts most sensitively. This is how microwave cooking heat is generated -- friction from this violence in water molecules. Structures of molecules are torn apart, molecules are forcefully deformed, called structural isomerism, and thus become impaired in quality. This is contrary to conventional heating of food where heat transfers convectionally from without to within. Cooking by microwaves begins within the cells and molecules where water is present and where the energy is transformed into frictional heat.

In addition to the violent frictional heat effects, called thermic effects, there are also athermic effects which have hardly ever been taken into account. These athermic effects are not presently measurable, but they can also deform the structures of molecules and have qualitative consequences. For example the weakening of cell membranes by microwaves is used in the field of gene altering technology. Because of the force involved, the cells are actually broken, thereby neutralizing the electrical potentials, the very life of the cells, between the outer and inner side of the cell membranes. Impaired cells become easy prey for viruses, fungi and other microorganisms. The natural repair mechanisms are suppressed and cells are forced to adapt to a state of energy emergency -- they switch from aerobic to anaerobic respiration. Instead of water and carbon dioxide, the cell poisons hydrogen peroxide and carbon monoxide are produced."

The same violent deformations that occur in our bodies, when we are directly exposed to radar or microwaves, also occur in the molecules of foods cooked in a microwave oven. This radiation results in the destruction and deformation of food molecules. Microwaving also creates new compounds, called radiolytic compounds, which are unknown fusions not found in nature. Radiolytic compounds are created by molecular decomposition - decay - as a direct result of radiation.

Microwave oven manufacturers insist that microwaved and irradiated foods do not have any significantly higher radiolytic compounds than do broiled, baked or other conventionally cooked foods. The scientific clinical evidence presented here has shown that this is simply a lie. In America, neither universities nor the federal government have conducted any tests concerning the effects on our bodies from eating microwaved foods. Isn't that a bit odd? They're more concerned with studies on what happens if the door on a microwave oven doesn't close properly. Once again, common sense tells us that their attention should be centered on what happens to food cooked inside a microwave oven. Since people ingest this altered food, shouldn't there be concern for how the same decayed molecules will affect our own human biological cell structure?

   Industry's action to hide the truth

As soon as Doctors Hertel and Blanc published their results, the authorities reacted. A powerful trade organization, the Swiss Association of Dealers for Electro-apparatuses for Households and Industry, known as FEA, struck swiftly in 1992. They forced the President of the Court of Seftigen, Canton of Bern, to issue a "gag order" against Drs. Hertel and Blanc. In March 1993, Dr. Hertel was convicted for "interfering with commerce" and prohibited from further publishing his results. However, Dr. Hertel stood his ground and fought this decision over the years.

Not long ago, this decision was reversed in a judgment delivered in Strasbourg, Austria, on August 25, 1998. The European Court of Human Rights held that there had been a violation of Hertel's rights in the 1993 decision. The European Court of Human Rights also ruled that the "gag order" issued by the Swiss court in 1992 against Dr. Hertel, prohibiting him from declaring that microwave ovens are dangerous to human health, was contrary to the right to freedom of expression. In addition, Switzerland was ordered to pay Dr. Hertel compensation.

   Ten Reasons to Throw out your Microwave Oven

From the conclusions of the Swiss, Russian and German scientific clinical studies, we can no longer ignore the microwave oven sitting in our kitchens. Based on this research, we will conclude this article with the following:
1. Continually eating food processed from a microwave oven causes long term - permanent - brain damage by "shorting out" electrical impulses in the brain [de-polarizing or de-magnetizing the brain tissue].
2. The human body cannot metabolize [break down] the unknown by-products created in microwaved food.
3. Male and female hormone production is shut down and/or altered by continually eating microwaved foods.
4. The effects of microwaved food by-products are residual [long term, permanent] within the human body.
5. Minerals, vitamins, and nutrients of all microwaved food is reduced or altered so that the human body gets little or no benefit, or the human body absorbs altered compounds that cannot be broken down.
6. The minerals in vegetables are altered into cancerous free radicals when cooked in microwave ovens.
7. Microwaved foods cause stomach and intestinal cancerous growths [tumors]. This may explain the rapidly increased rate of colon cancer in America.
8. The prolonged eating of microwaved foods causes cancerous cells to increase in human blood.
9. Continual ingestion of microwaved food causes immune system deficiencies through lymph gland and blood serum alterations.
10. Eating microwaved food causes loss of memory, concentration, emotional instability, and a decrease of intelligence.

Have you tossed out your microwave oven yet?

The use of artificial microwave transmissions for subliminal psychological control, a.k.a. "brainwashing", has also been proven. We're attempting to obtain copies of the 1970's Russian research documents and results written by Drs. Luria and Perov specifying their clinical experiments in this area.

Written by Anthony Wayne and Lawrence Newell

International common Law Copyright 2000

by The Christian Law Institute & Fellowship Assembly

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The Complete Guide to Fats and Oils

Choosing the right fats and oils in your food preparation has a dramatic impact on your health. There is much information and misinformation on what constitutes healthy fats. This chart simplifies the best choices of fats for cooking, fats that should not be heated, and which to avoid altogether.

It took our health community decades to recognize the dangers of trans fats in margarine and other butter replacements. And only recently are the anti-inflammatory and immune enhancing benefits of coconut oil, a saturated fat, being publicized. How long do we need to wait until “heart-healthy” vegetable oils are recognized for its inflammatory effects and as a major contributor to modern disease?

Do what healthy traditional societies free of disease have done for generations, eat fats from foods that nature provides, including the highly stable animal and tropical fats and avoid industrial, factory – made processed fats and oils.

   Fats and Oils 101

All fats and oils are made up of a combination of three main kinds of fatty acids; saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated linoleic (LA) or linolenic acid. These refer to the kind of structure these fatty acids have between their carbon and hydrogen atoms.

    Saturated Fatty Acids

The carbon chain in a saturated fatty acid are filled, or saturated, with hydrogen atoms.
This saturation creates a compact and highly stable structure that resist oxidation, even under high temperatures.
Saturated fatty acids are found in animal fats and tropical oils.

   Monounsaturated Fatty Acids

The carbon chain is missing two hydrogen atoms and has one (mono) double bond instead between two of its carbons – so it is not saturated (unsaturated) by hydrogen atoms.
Monounsaturated fatty acids are not densely packed and bends at the double bond – why these fats are liquid at room temperature and cannot be exposed to high heat like saturated fatty acids.
They are found in olive oil, avocados, and nuts.

   Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids (PUFAs)

The carbon chain is missing several hydrogen atoms and contain two or more (poly) double bonds.
PUFAs are highly unstable and sensitive to heat and light that can cause free radicals which harm your body.
They are found in corn, canola, soy, sunflower, safflower, rice bran, and grapeseed oils.

   Vegetable Oils and the Omega ratio

“Back in the MI (myocardial infarction) free days before 1920, the fats were butter and lard and I think that we would all benefit from the kind of diet that we had at a time when no one had ever heard the word corn oil.”
- Dr. Dudley White speaking at an American Heart Association fund raiser in 1956.

Vegetable oils may sound healthy but they are highly processed foods that require industrial processes to extract its oils. Part of the process involves using toxic chemicals like hexane and bleaching agents to help extract and deodorize these oils. Even organic expeller-pressed vegetable oils undergo tremendous processing and are exposed to heat and therefore oxidize easily resulting in a toxic food.

A crucial factor for good health is the proper ratio of omega 3 to omega 6 fatty acids in the diet. (Omega 3 fatty acids are triple unsaturated (3 double bonds) linolenic acid and omega – 6 is a double (2 double bonds) unsaturated linoleic acid). The exponential rise of vegetable oil consumption in our diets (found in all processed foods) and grain feeding of cattle and poultry has altered the ideal healthy omega 3 to omega 6 ratio.

The high omega – 6, polyunsaturated vegetable oils like corn, canola, soy, sunflower, safflower, rice bran, and grapeseed oils, increase inflammation in the body and are associated with;

~ cardiaovascular disease
 ~ diabetes
 ~ obesity
 ~ IBS
 ~ asthma
 ~ cancer
 ~ auto-immunity diseases
 ~ high blood pressure
 ~ infertility
 ~ weight gain
 ~ blood clots

These polyunsaturated vegetable oils – especially when heated – damage your cells, metabolic function, gene expression, and hormone functions. (Borage, evening primrose, and hemp oil are exceptions, though they are PUFAs they function as anti-inflammatories: are GLA Gamma-linolenic acid). This is why the addition of fish oils and cod liver oil supplements (omega – 3) are so popular in the natural health care industry.

Vegetable oils, if not organic, are likely derived from Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO’s), another important reason to avoid them. Read more about the health dangers of GMO’s and how to avoid them.

Note: It is possible to go the other extreme as well and become deficient in omega – 6 fats, though very uncommon. Read more about Omega – 6 Deficiency at the Agriculture Society website.

   What about Saturated Fats?

“The greatest scientific deception of this century, perhaps any century.”
- Geroge Mann, American scientist, criticizing the diet-heart hypothesis; the idea that high cholesterol foods cause heart disease.

The diet-heart hypothesis or lipid hypothesis first proposed by Ancel Keys surprisingly has little evidence to support it. Heart disease was rare in the early 1900′s when our diets were much higher in animal fats. The elevated triglycerides in the blood linked to heart disease do not come from dietary fats, but are produced in the liver from excess sugars from carbohydrates like refined sugars and white flour and from fructose. What is contributing to heart disease is the excess consumption of vegetable oils, hydrogenated fats, and refined sugars in our modern diet.

Essential Roles of Saturated Fatty Acids

~ enhance the immune system (needed by the white blood cells)
~ needed for strong bones (helps absorb calcium)
~ provide energy and structural integrity to the cells
~ protect the liver from alcohol and other toxins
~ healthy lungs (saturated fatty acids create the surfactant that and protect coat the lungs airspaces)
~ building blocks for hormones
~ assist in mineral absorption and
~ cardiovascular health
~ building blocks of a healthy brain and nervous system

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Margarine Vs. Butter

For many years people have debated the merits of guns versus butter as symbols of spending on military might or domestic comfort. Since 1869, another political debate has gone on, this one concerning the merits of margarine versus butter. In that year, a French food chemist succeeded in making a cheap substitute for the real thing, which had become scarce and expensive in the wake of a European cattle plague.

The word margarine came from the Greek for "pearl," because the original version was hard, white, and glossy. It also must have been less than appetizing, since it was made from beef fat, milk, and chopped sheep's stomachs and cows' udders, all treated with heat, lye, and pressure.

In its early years, margarine was a meat product which was dependent on the beef and dairy industries and whose main appeal was its low cost relative to butter. In this period, it was exclusively a food of the poor. In the early 1900s, food chemists discovered how to harden liquid oils by reacting them with hydrogen in the presence of metal catalysts and heat. Vegetable and fish oils then became raw materials for margarine, weakening its ties to the meat industry. Manufacturers bought up the cheapest oils they could find throughout the world, reduced them all to bland neutrality through chemical processing, and hardened them into margarine, which remained a food of the poor.

By the 1920s only vegetable oils went into the product, and over the next 30 years, busy food chemists using a host of chemical additives greatly improved the spreadability, appearance, and especially the flavor of margarine, always working toward the goal of greater resemblance to butter.

The improved margarine's appeal was still its lower cost, but now its sales increased enormously, seriously threatening the butter industry. The butter people responded with a bitter and dirty political fight to hamper sales of margarine, but in the end, they were to lose out because of an unforeseen change in consumer perceptions. In our lifetimes, people have come to see margarine not simply as a cheap substitute for butter, but as a healthy alternative to it, and this change has occurred particularly among the educated and affluent. For example, when I look in the refrigerators of fellow physicians, I find margarine instead of butter more often than not.

This new view of margarine, which North Americans now consume four times as much of as butter, developed along with an awareness of the role of saturated fat and cholesterol in producing atherosclerosis, the degenerative condition of arteries that predisposes us to heart attacks, strokes, and other circulatory diseases. Butterfat is the most saturated animal fat in the American diet, and butter contains a lot of cholesterol as well. As doctors became convinced of the dangers of saturated fat and cholesterol, they began to recommend margarine to patients, and the margarine industry capitalized on this development by emphasizing new formulations made exclusively from polyunsaturated vegetable oils, like safflower, corn, and soy. Producers also stressed that margarine contains no cholesterol. So it is that doctors, like other health-conscious Americans, tended to switch from butter to margarine. Many of these people will admit that they prefer the taste of butter but consider margarine better for them.

I do not share this view, and I predict that over the next decade, medical research will demonstrate clear health hazards of eating margarine.

In the first place, it is total fat in the diet that correlates with risk of premature death and disability from the major killing diseases in our society. If there is one undisputed fact that emerges from the confusion of modern nutritional research, it is that typical high-fat diets are killing us. Most people will live longer, feel better, and have less risk of early death from heart disease, stroke, and cancer if they keep their fat intake to well below 30 percent of calories in the diet, preferably in the range of 20 percent. This is much less than most Americans eat. One way to cut down on fat is to avoid both butter and margarine, especially as spreads for bread, and toppings for potatoes and other vegetables. It is easy to learn to like good bread without anything on it and to enjoy fresh vegetables plain or with low-fat sauces.

Second, although the danger to our hearts and arteries from saturated fat in the diet is clear, many people do not understand that the process of hardening vegetable oils by artificial hydrogenation creates saturated fat. In fact, the chemical term "saturation" refers to the percentage of carbon atoms in fats that are bonded fully with hydrogen atoms. The more saturated a fat, the higher the temperature at which it will liquefy.

When stored in the refrigerator, polyunsaturated vegetable oils remain clear and still pour easily. Saturated fats like beef suet, bacon grease, and butter become opaque and hard in the cold. No matter how unsaturated the oils are that go into margarine, they are made more saturated by the very process that turns them into a harder spread. Most brands of margarine do not disclose the percentage of saturated fat they contain, and even though they contain no cholesterol, they still stimulate your body to make cholesterol when you eat them. So the "heart-friendly" advantage of margarine over butter is not so great as advertised. Butter, unless it is certified as "organic," is likely to contain residues of drugs given to cows.

Butter may also contain residues of pesticides and other environmental toxins. All of these compounds tend to concentrate in fat, making high-fat dairy products more dangerous than lowfat or, especially, nonfat ones. Of course, butter is the ultimate high-fat dairy product. Margarine should be free of drugs, but depending on where its oils come from, it may contain pesticide residues and other toxins. It may also have dozens of chemical additives. So on this score, butter and margarine probably rate about the same.

The most significant area of comparison is the different chemical structures of the component fatty acids of the two. Butter is basically a natural product, and its fatty acids are structurally similar to the fatty acids in our bodies. The heat and chemicals used to transform vegetable oils into margarine change fatty acids into unnatural forms that may be most unhealthy to eat.

Unsaturated fatty acids have points of molecular strain, where carbon atoms are connected to each other by double or triple bonds instead of being fully occupied by hydrogen atoms. These strain points determine the three-dimensional configurations of molecules.

In nature, all of these molecules have a curved shape that allows them to fit neatly into the membranes that enclose all cells and many of the structures within them. Chemists call this natural shape the cis-configuration. Heat and harsh chemical treatment can cause unsaturated fatty acids to spring open into a different shape called the trans-configuration, which looks jointed instead of curved.

The body cannot incorporate trans-fatty acids into membranes, and if it tries to do so, deformed cellular structures may result. Eating trans-fatty acids in margarine, vegetable shortening, and partially hydrogenated vegetable oils probably increases cancer risks, promotes inflammation, and accelerates aging and degenerative changes in tissues. I am convinced enough of these possibilities to try to eliminate those fats from my diet.

Many people ask me whether I think it is better to eat butter or margarine. They should be asking whether it is worse to eat butter or margarine, because both are concentrated fats that contribute to the unhealthy excess of fat calories that most of us consume. I don't keep either of them in my house. But if I were forced to make a choice, I'd take the real thing in modest amounts, and I recommend that choice to you as well.

   By Dr. Andrew Weil

ANDREW WEIL teaches at the University of Arizona College of Medicine, has a private medical practice, and is the author of Natural Health, Natural Medicine (Houghton Mifflin, 1990) .

    Pass The Butter, Please!

--Author unknown, but good truthful information

Did you know that the hydrogenated fat they use in fast food restaurants in the deep-fat fryers was originally designed as candle wax? When it didn't work as planned, they looked for a new use for
it, and found it worked great for frying foods and never going bad.

Margarine was originally manufactured to fatten turkeys. When it killed the turkeys, the people who had put all the money into the research wanted a payback, so they put their heads together to figure out what to do with this product to get their money back.
It was a white substance with no food appeal, so they added the yellow coloring and sold it to people to use in place of butter. More recently, they have come out with some clever new flavorings.

the difference between margarine and butter?

Both have the same amount of calories. Butter is slightly higher in saturated fats, at 8 grams compared to 5 grams. Eating margarine can increase heart disease in women by 53% over eating the same amount of butter, according to a Harvard Medical School study.

Eating butter increases the absorption of many other nutrients in other foods. Butter has many nutritional benefits, where margarine has a only few, because they are added. Butter tastes much better than margarine, and it can enhance the flavors of other foods. Butter has been around for centuries, where margarine has been around for less than 100 years.

And now, for margarine, which...

~ Is very high in trans-fatty acids.
~ Triples the risk of coronary heart disease.
~ Increases total cholesterol and LDL (the bad cholesterol), and lowers HDL cholesterol (the good cholesterol).
~ Increases the risk of cancers up to fivefold.
~ Lowers the quality of breast milk.
~ Decreases the immune response.
~ Decreases the insulin response.

And here's the most disturbing fact...

Margarine is but ONE MOLECULE away from being PLASTIC. This fact alone is enough to make you want to avoid margarine for life, as well as anything else that is hydrogenated. (This means that hydrogen is added, changing the molecular structure of the substance.)

You can try this yourself:

Purchase a tub of margarine and leave it in your garage or a shaded area. Within a couple of days, you will note a couple of things:

No flies, not even those pesky fruit flies, will go near it. (That should tell you something.) It will not rot or smell differently, because it has NO nutritional value. Nothing will grow on it. Even tiny microorganisms will not a find a home to grow on. Why? Because margarine is nearly plastic.

Would you melt your Tupperware and spread that on your toast?

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