If you are interested in your health, the health of those you love and the health of the Planet, join me here. Our health is affected by our environment, our political and economic systems and our relationship to everything around us. We are interconnected with everyone on the planet. If we purchase items that cause harm to others across the world, our health is impacted. If we hold on to anger at others, if we keep dangerous secrets inside us and withhold love, we damage our health. This blog will deal with our food supply, our health care system, our environment as well as the economic and political factors that are affecting our well being. I will blog about books, including the ones I am writing, movies, articles and links to sites that can help us all stay healthy in mind, body and spirit. Now a toast, Here's To your HealthAsk me anything
New Leaks Into Pacific at Japan Nuclear Plant
August 7, 2013, New York Times
Tons of contaminated groundwater from the stricken Fukushima nuclear plant have overwhelmed an underground barrier and are emptying daily into the Pacific, creating what a top regulator has called a crisis. The water contains strontium and cesium, as well as tritium. The plant was already struggling to store hundreds of thousands of tons of contaminated water that flowed through the buildings housing three reactors where [three] meltdowns occurred in 2011. But the contamination in this new groundwater problem is from different sources, Tepco said. The company has admitted that it failed to respond quickly enough to the latest groundwater contamination, saying it was preoccupied with more pressing issues like cooling the damaged reactors. “Tepco appears overwhelmed in dealing with what is a very serious problem,” said Akio Yamamoto, a professor of nuclear engineering at Nagoya University, who serves as outside expert for the Nuclear Regulation Authority, Japan’s nuclear watchdog. Critics contend that the plant has emitted far more radioactive materials than it is saying, based in part on levels of contaminants discovered in the harbor, which are well above safe levels in some places. The contamination appears to be spreading, with tests last month by Tepco showing high levels of tritium and other radioactive elements like strontium starting at other locations near the two other crippled reactors.
Note: Declaring the situation an “emergency”, the Japanese government has stepped in to take over control of the response from Tepco. For more on this, click here. For a National Geographic article on what you need to know about the radioactive contamination of the Pacific Ocean by the Fukushima disaster, click here. It reports that scientists have estimated that contaminated seawater could reach the West Coast of the United States in five years or less. For more on the environmental devastation of nuclear power, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sourcesavailable here.
On a South African farm growing GM corn, reports indicated that as many as 1-2 workers died each month while eating the corn as the main staple of their diet—three times a day. Many of the 50–60 workers fell ill—with flu-like symptoms, headaches, and inflammatory disorders—forcing the farm to employ 20% more people to make up for the sick days.
When the farmer switched to non-GM corn as a desperate attempt to counteract severe animal disorders, the health of both the animals and the workers improved dramatically. When he ran out of non-GM corn and had to use GM corn, the health problems reemerged—until the farmer secured non-GM corn once again.
According to a former Monsanto scientist, when his colleagues discovered that GM corn damaged the health of rats, they hid the evidence by rewriting the study. He was especially concerned that if the rats got sick eating a relatively small percentage of corn in their diet (e.g. up to 33% for 90 days), what does that mean for native Southern Africans who eat corn as the vast majority of their calories every day.
Your generosity allows us to educate and together WE are changing lives. With your contribution today we can create translations of the movie Genetic Roulette–The Gamble of Our Lives and distribute free copies to leaders, the media and for public showings.
Let’s see, rats and mice get cancer, diabetes, heart disease, have premature births and become infertile when fed genetically modified food but that doesn’t prove anything? I guess we need human experiments - oh, but we have been doing that for 20 years and we have the most expensive health care in the world and some of the worst health statistics including a premature birth rate that matches African countries. Do you think there might be a connection?????
With my husband in a post heart surgery unit, I found that they were shooting insulin into him because his blood sugar was a little high. They were giving him juice and frozen rasberry ice with sugar, HFCS, corn syrup and dyes. Do you think that might be the reason? Got that stopped, blood sugar went down, off of insulin and a positive response from dietician, food service and the cardiac doctor, who said he would support a letter to the administration. No one else has complained at the patient level. Start complaining folks!
Don’t let $35 Million Kill GMO Labeling in California!
The polls so far in California have been running strongly in favor of the YES on 37 campaign – but could $35 million in ads change that?
Years ago, GMO right-to-know forces enjoyed a similar lead in an Oregon Ballot Initiate, but were defeated by a massive barrage of TV ads by Monsanto and corporate agribusiness.
Could $35 million of ads, flooding the California airwaves, mean the end of GMO labeling in California, too?
Thanks to the overwhelming response from organic consumers like you, the OCA and OCF have donated more than $1 million to the California Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act. Thank you to all of you – from all over the country – who have stood with us in this fight.
For those who haven’t joined in yet, now is the time. Early voting has already started, and in less than five weeks it will all be over. Please help us win this historic, grassroots-driven GMO labeling initiative by making a donation today. And please pass this message along to everyone you know who cares about food safety. Thank you!
DONATE TO THE ORGANIC CONSUMERS ASSOCIATION (tax-deductible, helps support our public education work against GMOs and chemical food, and our work on behalf of organic standards, fair trade and sustainable farming)
DONATE TO THE ORGANIC CONSUMERS FUND(non-tax-deductible, but necessary for our legislative efforts in California and other states)
Study linking GM maize to cancer must be taken seriously by regulators
September 28, 2012, The Guardian (One of the UK’s leading newspapers)
For seven years [Professor Gilles-Eric Séralini, professor of molecular biology at Caen university in France] and his team have questioned the safety standards applied to varieties of GM maize and tried to re-analyse industry-funded studies presented to governments. Last week, Seralini brought the whole scientific and corporate establishment crashing down on his head. In a peer-reviewed US journal, Food and Chemical Toxicology, he reported the results of a €3.2m study. Fed a diet of Monsanto’s Roundup-tolerant GM maize NK603 for two years, or exposed to Roundup over the same period, rats developed higher levels of cancers and died earlier than controls. But barely had the paper surfaced than it was attracting heavyweight academic criticism. Commentators variously claimed the study to be “biased”, “poorly performed”, “bogus”, “fraudulent”, “sub-standard”, “sloppy agenda-based science”, “inadequate” and “unsatisfactory”. Séralini and his scientists were labelled “crafty activists” and “anti-science”. It was a triumph for the scientific and corporate establishment which has used similar tactics to crush other scientists like Arpad Pusztai of the Rowett Institute in Scotland, who was sacked after his research suggested GM potatoes damaged the stomach lining and immune system of rats, and David Quist and Ignacio Chapela, who studied the flow of genes from illegally planted GM maize to Mexican wild maize.
Note: For a powerful summary of the risks to health from GMO foods including the story of the above-mentioned Arpad Pusztai, click here. For deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources on GMOs, click here. For a powerful 13-minute video revealing the disturbing results of the first long-term scientific study on GMOs showing how they greatly increased cancer incidence in rats, click here.
Big Pharma Medicaid Fraud Penalties at Record High
Major pharmaceutical companies undeterred as profits continue to rise
Settlements between pharmaceutical companies and state and federal governments over cases of Medicaid fraud are at an all time high, with financial penalties for major drug companies on the rise, according to a new report by Public Citizen. However, as Public Citizen urged Thursday, much still needs to be done in order to curb big pharma malpractice, as major profits still largely outweigh the costs of legal penalties, making it difficult to deter future violations.
The charges against major pharmaceutical companies accused of defrauding their Medicaid programs, include overcharging health programs, largely in the form of drug pricing fraud, as well as unlawful promotion of ‘off-label’ drugs (promoting drugs for unapproved uses).
2012 has already broken the record for financial penalties and court settlements against the pharmaceutical industry, with $6.6 billion recovered by mid-July.
The big pharma corporations associated with the largest penalties include GlaxoSmithKline, Johnson & Johnson and Abbott. These companies were responsible for two-thirds of the financial penalties paid out to the federal and state governments over the course of the study period. GlaxoSmithKline topped the list with $3.1 billion in settlements.
“It should come as no surprise that states facing Medicaid budget shortfalls are finally deciding to root out fraud that likely has cost their taxpayers billions of dollars over the years,” said Dr. Sammy Almashat, a researcher with Public Citizen’s Health Research Group and the study’s author. “What this new report unequivocally shows is that those states that have chosen to hold the pharmaceutical industry accountable have largely seen their enforcement efforts pay for themselves.”
Since 1991, pharmaceutical companies have paid out $30 billion in settlements to the federal government and states.
However, according to Public Citizen, the penalties still pale in comparison to the companies’ profits, which also continue to sky rocket, making it difficult to actually discourage future violations.
The seemingly undeterred pharmaceutical industry remains the biggest defrauder of the federal government.
"The fact that the fraud has continued unabated means that new legislation and more felony charges against drug company executives who oversee this fraudulent activity are urgently needed," urged Public Citizen on Thursday.