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acts of kindness reduce risk of Alzheimer’s

December 20th, 2008

Second Opinion Health Alert

                December 19, 2008

          Can this act of kindness  reduce your risk of Alzheimer‘s by 89%?
          The incidence of Alzheimer’s disease is increasing rapidly.  There still
is no satisfactory treatment. Even alternatives have little impact.  So
prevention is absolutely vital. Now, what if I told you it’s possible to
reduce your risk of getting Alzheimer’s disease by 89%? Would you be
          This treatment doesn’t cost anything. But it does require  some effort on
your part. No, it’s not exercise — though exercise does help
considerably. The treatment is quite simple. All you have to do is serve
          Yep, that’s all there is to it. You see, There’s a lot of  research on
conscientiousness and longevity. Work going back into the early  1990s
strongly suggests a relationship. And now we’re seeing this research
applied to memory.
          In fact, this latest study shows that serving others not  only reduces
your risk of Alzheimer’s by a whopping 89%, but it also reduces  your risk
of mild cognitive decline, as well.
          This study followed 997 older Catholic nuns, priests, and  brothers
without dementia at the start of the study. The researchers evaluated  the
Catholics with a 12-item measure of conscientiousness. Then they followed
the participants for 12 years or until they died. The researchers
controlled  the subjects for other personality traits, activity patterns,
and vascular  conditions. Of course, they also controlled for age, sex,
and education.  Eighteen percent (176) of the patients developed
Alzheimer’s during the study.
          The authors found that those with the highest  conscientiousness scores
(90th percentile) had the lowest risk. And those with  the lowest scores
(10th percentile), had the highest risk.
          In those who died, the researchers did pathological  examinations of their
brains at autopsy. Conscientiousness had a measurable  modifying effect on
the development of neurofibrillary pathologic changes and  cerebral
infarction (stroke) before death. Neurofibrillary tangles are a
pathological hallmark of Alzheimer’s brains. This research strongly
suggests  that conscientiousness can markedly reduce very nasty anatomical
changes in  your brain while maintaining brain function.
          There are a lot of nutritional steps you can take to reduce  your risk of
dementia, but none of them can compare to these results. Does  serving
others really work this well? Consider Mother Teresa. She lived a very
productive life until she died at 87. Many people consider her one of the
most  conscientious people of all time.
          I know many seniors who volunteer their time in service  after they
retire. They seem happier, more active, and have a higher self  worth. I
also see many patients who are working well into their 80s with no
apparent decline at all. While my experience is observational only, I
strongly  believe there’s a significant benefit to your health when you
serve others.
          This research is a compelling reason to reach out to others  and help them
whenever possible. And now we know that serving others also  serves
ourselves. Many of us make a point of helping others during the  holidays.
That’s great. But this year, keep doing it throughout the year. It’s  a
great way to keep your brain healthy.
          Yours for better health and  medical freedom, 

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Eliant Campaign in Europe–please sign

December 17th, 2008


Dear friends,

Have you heard that anthroposophical medical rememdies,  biodynamic products, and Waldorf education, indeed, all the things out of anthropsophy that we love and hold dear are in danger, because the European Union does not recognize the validity of the products and services that are based on a spiritual view of the human being? Do you know that the EU is making laws that will make these products and services illegal? (For instance, the new EU guidelines mandate that ALL baby food must have synthetic vitamins added, even though the Demeter baby foods don’t need them because their own NATURAL vitamin content has been proven to be equivalent. And Hauschka sun screen will not longer be manufactured because it doesn’t have the particular CHEMICAL ingredients that the EU requires.) Just today we learned that now in Holland the anthroposophical medicines that are not classified as “homeopathic” are no longer legal.

The freedom of the consumer is being curtailed through these laws. And what happens in Europe could easily and predictably also happen here.

Our friends in Europe have been told that if they can gather 1,000,000 signatures (by Dec. 31, 2008), they will establish their identity as an interest/consumer group, and be guaranteed a positive review of their products under EU laws. Signatures gathered in North America will also be accepted, in the spirit of international commerce. We thus far have 630,000 signatures — a good start, but still less than 2/3 of the way there!

Therefore, PLEASE JOIN ME in supporting this movement, by going to the website listed below and signing this signature. AND PLEASE also forward this email — with my text if you like — to 3, or 5, or 10 of your friends this week, and urging them to get on board as well.  

Cynthia Hoven

Director, Eurythmy training program

Rudolf Steiner College

Dear supporters of the ELIANT campaign 



One alone does not help, but

rather whoever unites with

many others at the right time.



We’d like to thank you very warmly for your online signatures for the ELIANT campaign. We have now received over 630,000 signatures, which encourages us to ask you for a one-off Christmas gift to ELIANT: 

Would it be possible for you to send this email to 3 friends or acquaintances and ask them to sign online? If so, we could achieve one million signatures by Christmas! 

In this way you will be helping to secure legal safeguards in Europe for DEMETER quality baby and infant foods without artificial vitamin supplementation, freedom of choice in education and full and free availability of anthroposophic medicines! 

Your friends and acquaintances can sign online here: 

And >here< you can print out a signature list and send it out with your Christmas post

With very warm thanks 

and best wishes for Advent and Christmas 

for the ELIANT Alliance sponsor group


Christof Wiechert

Waldorf educationalist

Initial signatory of ELIANT Charter


Nikolai Fuchs

International Association

for biodynamic agriculture


Günther Schulz

International Federation of

of Anthroposophic Medical Associations / IVAA


Heike Sommer

ELIANT campaign 

press / publicity officer

Dr. jur. Jürgen Erdmenger

Institut anthroposophique Rudolf Steiner

Associate member 


Dr. med. Michaela Glöckler


for Anthroposophic Medicine


Thomas Göing

ELIANT campaign

Project manager


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Why the FDA doesn’t want to regulate tobacco

December 13th, 2008
NaturalNews) The U.S. Congress has just voted to categorize tobacco as a drug, handing the FDA regulatory authority to control the advertising, marketing and sales of cigarettes. This hilarious move, if approved by the Senate and signed by the President, would put the FDA in the position of approving the sale of a “drug” that the entire medical community openly admits kills millions of people. According to the CDC, tobacco kills 438,000 people each year in the United States alone (1). Now, thanks to the U.S. Congress, the FDA <>  could soon be the government office responsible for allowing these 438,000 deaths each year!

Think about it: Right now, FDA-approved drugs kill around 100,000 Americans a year, and that’s if you believe the conservative figures from the American Medical Association (the real numbers are at least double that). Add tobacco <>  deaths to that list, and you come to the startling realization that if tobacco is considered an FDA-approved “drug,” then FDA-approved drugs will kill well over half a million Americans each year! (538,000 fatalities a year due to FDA-approved drugs, using government statistics.)

That’s a level of fatalities that terrorists haven’t even come close to approaching.

Why the FDA doesn’t want to regulate tobacco

Obviously, the FDA does not want to find itself in this position, because if regulatory authority over tobacco is shoved onto the FDA, it would be forced to declare tobacco an unapproved, unsafe drug and ban its sale.

Why? Because there have been no clinical studies whatsoever supporting the use of tobacco as a medicine. And if it’s considered a drug, then the FDA must apply the same rules to tobacco that it applies to other substances. And there’s absolutely no way a series of clinical trials could show tobacco to be safe or effective at treating disease. (Unless, of course, Big Tobacco funds the studies, in which case cigarette smoke could be made to look like it CURES cancer <> , thanks to fraudulent science and corrupt researchers…)

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Fun Way to Feed People!

November 18th, 2008

Hi everyone,

I just learned about a new very fun website <>   , which was created by Harvard Univ. and the UN.  Here’s the deal:  you play a game and each answer you get correct donates 20 grains of rice to the UN World Food Program.  Each answer you get correct will lead you to a slightly harder question, incorrect to an easier question, and so on.  There are all kinds of categories from English vocabulary, lanugages, art, geography, math, science.  Spend just 10 minutes and you can feed someone for an entire day~~great way to ‘waste time’ isn’t it, and you increase your brain power while you do it.


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Gulf War Syndrom verified

November 18th, 2008




Report: 1-in-4 Gulf War veterans still suffer from toxin exposure


Now Hear This: Seattle’s Military Blog

militaryarmed servicesarmynavyair forcemarinesiraqafghanistanpentagonSeattle


Report: 1-in-4 Gulf War veterans still suffer from toxin exposure


Seventeen years after the decisive but relatively quick Persian Gulf War invasion of Iraq to liberate Kuwait, a landmark 450-page report released Monday by a federal panel of scientific experts and veterans concludes what many veterans already knew about Gulf War illness:


At least one-fourth of the nearly 700,000 military personnel who served in that war and its aftermath have complex but real health problems that the report now scientifically links to a poisonous stew to which they were exposed.


“Veterans of the 1990-1991 Gulf War had the distinction of serving their country in a military operation that was a tremendous success, achieved in short order. But many had the misfortune of developing lasting health consequences that were poorly understood and, for too long, denied or trivialized,” the report said.


The Congressionally-mandated report, titled “Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Veterans’ Illnesses” was handed over Monday to Secretary of Veterans Affairs James Peake at the department’s headquarters in the nation’s capital. The Boston University School of Public Health scientific staff assisted with research.


Anthony Hardie, national secretary and legislative chair for Veterans of Modern Warfare Inc., a non-profit veterans group representing those who served during and since the 1991 Persian Gulf War, said the report is “huge.”


“It really closes one of the darker chapters of the legacy of the Gulf War, and that is Gulf War illness,” Hardie said.


“The report clearly lays out that Gulf War illness was caused by unique exposures; it lays out clearly that Gulf war illness is not a stress-related or trauma condition, that is is not the same as in wars before or since. It is unique,” Hardie said by phone Monday.


According to the report, “The extensive body of scientific research now available consistently indicates that Gulf War illness is real, that it is the result of neurotoxic exposures during Gulf War deployment, and that few veterans have recovered or substantially improved with time.


“Scientific evidence leaves no question that Gulf War illness is a real condition with real causes and serious consequences for affected veterans. Research has also shown that his pattern of illness does not occur after every war and cannot be attributed to psychological stressors during the Gulf War,” the report says.


Gulf War veterans applaud the report, lamenting that it has been a long-time coming, noting the years in which fellow veterans suffered and died. 


Hardie said the report conjures “mixed feelings.”


On the one hand, “It is certainly a victory for Gulf War veterans. Gulf War veterans were right all along that their illnesses are related to unique exposures during the 1991 Gulf War. This is a government report based on science that clearly lays out the nature and scope and effects of Gulf War illness,” he said. 


On the other hand, “it is bittersweet in that two decades after the war’s end we still don’t have treatments for Gulf War illness; they are sporadic,” Hardie said. Some veterans illnesses remain unrecognized.


The long ordeal over Gulf War illness for veterans of the 1991 war parallels the long fight of Vietnam veterans over post-war illnesses linked to Agent Orange, a chemical defoliant, many veterans say. The report notes those difficulties.


“Some observers have suggested that these complexities pose too difficult a challenge, and that it is unlikely that the nature and causes of Gulf War illness can ever be known. On the contrary, the Committee has found that the extensive scientific research and other diverse sources of information related to the health of Gulf War veterans paint a cohesive picture that yields important answers to basic questions about both the nature and causes of Gulf War illness. These, in turn, provide direction for future research that is urgently needed to improve the health of Gulf War veterans,” the report says.


Many Gulf War veterans have voiced frustration that their problems were written off as stress-related. The report flatly says that “studies consistently indicate that Gulf War illness is not the result of combat or other stressors, and that Gulf War veterans have lower rates of posttraumatic stress disorder than veterans of other wars.” 


A variety of factors were examined, ranging from sychological stress, vaccines, oil fires, depleted uranium. nerve agents, infectious disease and many more. 


Two immediately jumped out at Hardie, pesticides and pyrodstigmine.


The latter, called simply “PB,” was a pill taken by at least half of all troops in the 1991 war for purported protection against nerve gas.


Troops in the current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan don’t have to take the pills, Hardie noted.


“That was one lesson we learned from the Gulf War. PB was not approved by the FDA, which gave a waiver to the Defense Department that waived the necessity for informed consent,” Hardie said.


The report says of pyridostigmine bromide (PB):



“Widespread use of PB as a protective measure in the event of nerve gas exposure was unique to the 1990-1991 Gulf War. Pyridostigmine bromide is one of only two exposures consistently identified by Gulf War epidemiologic studies to be significantly associated with Gulf War illness. About half of Gulf War personnel are believed to have taken PB tablets during deployment, with greatest use among ground troops and those in forward locations. Several studies have identified dose-response effects, indicating that veterans who took PB for longer periods of time have higher illness rates than veterans who took less PB. In addition, clinical studies have identified significant associations between PB use during the Gulf War and neurocognitive and neuroendocrine alterations identified many years after the war. Taken together, these diverse types and sources of evidence provide a consistent and persuasive case that use of PB during the Gulf War is causally associated with Gulf War illness.”



Depleted uranium, meanwhile, a much-considered potential source of illness over the years, was not likely a culprit in Gulf War illness, although the report leaves open a door by noting that DU very likely has effects of its own. 


“Exposure to depleted uranium munitions is not likely a primary cause of Gulf War illness. Questions remain about long-term health effects of higher dose exposures to DU, however, particularly in relation to other health outcomes,” the report said.


Committee members said the report offers a “blueprint” for the incoming Obama Administration to focus on Gulf War veterans. It also could help those from other countries, including troops allied with the U.S. during Desert Storm, who have reported similar health problems. 


“A renewed federal research commitment is needed,” the committee report says, “to achieve the critical objectives of improving the health of Gulf War veterans and preventing similar problems in future deployments. This is a national obligation, made especially urgent by the many years that Gulf War veterans have waited for answers and assistance.”





Posted by Mike Barber Mike Barber at November 17, 2008 3:53 p.m.

Categories: Army, Department of Veterans Affairs, Iraq, Marines, Veterans 





Posted by unregistered user at 11/17/08 5:48 p.m.


Why is it that so many soldiers and probably civilians can get exposed to such hazards at the whim of their own government and why are there so little accountability? Why must these people battle beaurocracy in the land they fought for to get recognition of the maladies they were left with? It is almost like a case of the enemy within. Governments must own up when there has been a stuff-up.

Report violation


Posted by unregistered user at 11/17/08 6:11 p.m.


To help servicemembers and Veterans with their immunity from bio-toxins one should insist that Veteran’s for Peace change the name and scope of their Agent Orange campaign. It deals extensively with reparations for Agent Orange in Vietnam but is insensitive to the continuing hazard of bio-terrorism by or against Veterans. With their documented weak grasp on arms control and non violence, in general, as well as their fearless registration with the armed forces, government and health care, Veterans are particularly vulnerable to use as soldiers of fortune against their own friends and families. Granted the Veteran conference goer who earned this scorn was a former lawyer who was up to his elbows in wills before he went insane, and now seems to have killed both his parents, much like all the other lawyers I know. Veterans must stop torturing their spouse and killing their spouse’s family. At least Veterans have succeeded in stopping the medical billing. They have also succeeded in laying down their arms. Perhaps this skill in disarmament can extend to the invisible biological and chemical weapons, used at home so much they are overlooked at the majority of “natural” deaths, because they are prohibited under international and national law.




November 17th, 2008




I  am an ER nurse and this is the best description of this event that I have ever  heard. Please read, pay attention, and send it on!


I  was aware that female heart attacks are different, but this is the best  description I’ve ever read.

Women  and heart attacks (Myocardial infarction). Did you know that women rarely have  the same dramatic symptoms that men have when experiencing heart attack ..

you  know, the sudden stabbing pain in the chest, the cold sweat, grabbing the  chest & dropping to the floor that we see in the movies. Here is the story  of one woman’s   experience  with a heart attack.

‘I  had a heart attack at about 10 :30 PM with NO prior exertion, NO prior  emotional trauma that one would suspect might have brought it on. I was  sitting all snugly & warm on a cold evening, with my purring cat in my  lap, reading an interesting story my friend had sent me, and actually  thinking, ‘A-A-h, this is the life, all cozy and warm in my soft, cushy Lazy  Boy with my feet propped up.

A  moment later, I felt that awful sensation of indigestion, when you’ve been in  a hurry and grabbed a bite of sandwich and washed it down with a dash of  water, and that hurried bite seems to feel like you’ve swallowed a golf ball  going down the esophagus in slow motion and it is most uncomfortable. You  realize you shouldn’t have gulped it down so fast and needed to chew it more  thoroughly and this time drink a glass of water to hasten its progress down to  the stomach. This was my initial sensation—the only trouble was   that  I hadn’t taken a bite of anything since about 5:00 p.m.

After  it seemed to subside, the next sensation was like little squeezing motions  that seemed to be racing up my SPINE   (hind-sight,  it was probably my aorta spasms), gaining speed as they continued racing up  and under my sternum (breast bone, where one presses rhythmically when  ministering CPR).

This  fascinating process continued on into my throat and branched out into both  jaws. ‘AHA!! NOW I stopped puzzling about what was happening — we all have  read and/or heard about pain in the jaws being one of the signals of an MI  happening, haven’t we? I said aloud to myself and the cat,   Dear  God, I think I’m having a heart attack!

I  lowered the foot rest dumping the cat from my lap, started to take a step and  fell on the floor instead. I thought to myself, If this is a heart attack, I  shouldn’t be walking into the next room where the phone is or anywhere else  … but, on the other hand, if I don’t, nobody will know that I need help, and  if I wait any longer I may not be able to get up in a moment.

I  pulled myself up with the arms of the chair, walked slowly into the next room  and dialed the Paramedics … I told her I thought I was having a heart attack  due to the pressure building under the sternum and radiating into my jaws. I  didn’t feel hysterical or afraid, just stating the facts. She said she   was  sending the Paramedics over immediately, asked if the front door was near to  me, and if so, to un-bolt the door and then lie down on the floor where they  could see me when they came in.

I  unlocked the door and then laid down on the floor as instructed and lost  consciousness, as I don’t remember the medics coming in, their examination,  lifting me onto a gurney or getting me into their ambulance, or hearing the  call they made to St. Jude ER on the way, but I did briefly awaken when we  arrived and saw that the radiologist was already there in his surgical blues  and cap, helping the medics pull my stretcher out of the ambulance. He was  bending over me asking questions (probably something like ‘Have you taken any  medications?’) but I couldn’t make my mind interpret what he was saying, or  form an answer, and nodded off again, not waking up until the Cardiologist and   partner had already threaded the teeny angiogram balloon up my femoral  artery into the aorta and into my   heart  where they installed 2 side by side stints to hold open my right coronary  artery.
‘I  know it sounds like all my thinking and actions at home must have taken at  least 20-30 minutes before calling the paramedics, but actually it took  perhaps 4-5 minutes before the call, and both the fire station and St. Jude  are only minutes away from my home, and my Cardiologist was already to go to  the OR in his scrubs and get going on restarting my heart (which had stopped  somewhere between my arrival and the procedure) and installing the stints.

‘Why  have I written all of this to you with so much detail? Because I want all of  you who are so important in my life to know what I learned first hand.’

1.  Be aware that something very different is happening in your body not the usual  men’s symptoms but inexplicable things happening (until my sternum and jaws  got into the act). It is said that many more women than men die of their first  (and last) MI because they didn’t know they were having one and commonly  mistake it as indigestion, take some Maalox or other anti-heartburn  preparation and go to bed, hoping they’ll feel better in the morning when they  wake up … which doesn’t happen. My female friends, your symptoms might not  be exactly like mine, so I advise you to call the Paramedics if ANYTHING is   unpleasantly  happening that you’ve not felt before.

It  is better to have a ‘false alarm’ visitation than to risk your life guessing  what it might be!

2.  Note that I said ‘Call the Paramedics.’ And if you can take an aspirin.  Ladies, TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE!   Do  NOT try to drive yourself to the ER – you are a hazard to others on the road.

Do  NOT have your panicked husband who will be speeding and looking anxiously at  what’s happening with you instead of the road.

Do  NOT call your doctor — he doesn’t know where you live and if it’s at night  you won’t reach him anyway, and if it’s daytime, his assistants (or answering  service) will tell you to call the Paramedics. He doesn’t carry the equipment  in his car that you need to be saved! The paramedics do, principally OXYGEN  that you need ASAP. Your Dr. will be notified later.

3.  Don’t assume it couldn’t be a heart attack because you have a normal  cholesterol count. Research has discovered that a   cholesterol  elevated reading is rarely the cause of an MI (unless it’s unbelievably high  and/or accompanied by high blood pressure). MIs are usually caused by  long-term stress and inflammation in the   body,  which dumps all sorts of deadly hormones into your system to sludge things up  in there.   Pain  in the jaw can wake you from a sound sleep.   Let’s  be careful and be aware. The more we know the better chance we could survive.

A  cardiologist says if everyone who gets this mail sends it to 10 people, you  can be sure that we’ll save at least one life.

**Please  be a true friend and send this article to all your friends (male & female)  you care about!**


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Ecuador to give legal rights to Gaia

October 22nd, 2008



Date: Sun, 12 Oct 2008 23:30:08 -0700

The Guardian, 24.9.08

The South American republic of Ecuador will next week consider what many countries in the world would say is unthinkable. People will be asked to vote on Sunday on a new constitution that would give Ecuador’s tropical forests, islands, rivers and air similar legal rights to those normally granted to humans

If they vote yes – and polls show that 56% are for and only 23% are against - then an already approved bill of rights for nature will be introduced, and new laws will change the legal status of nature from being simply property to being a right-bearing entity.

The proposed bill states: ‘Natural communities and ecosystems possess the unalienable right to exist, flourish and evolve within Ecuador. Those rights shall be self-executing, and it shall be the duty and right of all Ecuadorian governments, communities, and individuals to enforce those rights.’

More on, NewsCenter, 25.9.08

Ecuador’s proposed constitution includes an article that grants nature the right to ‘exist, persist, maintain and regenerate its vital cycles, structure, functions and its processes in evolution’ and will grant legal standing to any person to defend those rights in court.

The concept that nature itself can possess rights runs counter to the classical liberal theories of government that hold sway throughout much of the West, which view rights as possessed only by individual human beings. 

But Ecuador is not the first country to propose granting rights to nonhuman entities: Many countries, including the United States, have long held that corporations possess many of the same rights – such as the rights to free expression and to due process – that human beings have. 

And in June, Spain‘s parliament approved a measure to extend some human rights to nonhuman apes.

But, as an editorial in the Los Angeles Times observes, Ecuador’s extension of rights to nature may represent a larger shift in how humans view their place in the world:

No other country has gone as far as Ecuador in proposing to give trees their day in court, but it certainly is not alone in its recalibration of natural rights. 

Religious leaders, including the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Dalai Lama and the Archbishop of Constantinople, have declared that caring for the environment is a spiritual duty. 

And earlier this year, the Catholic Church updated its list of deadly sins to include polluting the environment.

Ecuador is codifying this shift in sensibility. In some ways, this makes sense for a country whose cultural identity is almost indistinguishable from its regional geography – the Galapagos, the Amazon, the Sierra.

How this new area of constitutional law will work, however, is another question. We aren’t ready to endorse such a step at home, or even abroad. But it’s intriguing. We’ll be watching Ecuador’s example.

More, including the five articles that acknowledge rights said to be possessed by nature, or “Pachamama”, the Goddess revered by Andean peoples whose name roughly translates as “Mother Earth,” at:

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Mercola: Evidence Against Soy

October 7th, 2008

The Evidence Against Soy

soy, dow chemical, dupont, myth, health food, fermentedDow Chemical and DuPont, the same corporations that brought misery and death to millions around the world through Agent Orange, are now the driving forces behind the promotion of soy as a food for humans. They are financing anti-meat and anti-milk campaigns aimed largely at those concerned about animal welfare and the environment, trying to convince them that imitations such as “soymilk” are not only healthier than the real thing, but better for the earth too.

There is no evidence that consuming soy products can improve health, reduce environmental degradation or slow global warming. In fact, the evidence suggests quite the opposite.

The studies below regarding the effects of soy on health are eye-opening, particularly the review by the American Heart Association — which no longer supports the health claims about soy endorsed by the U.S. government.

Overall risks and benefits of soy assessed

Latest review by American Heart Association

Soy inhibits iron absorption

Poor iron bioavailability

Poor calcium bioavailability

Calcium and zinc absorbed better from milk than from soy — even without phytates

Soy provides no benefits with respect to heart disease risk

Soy causes bladder cancer

Soy isoflavones during pregnancy increase breast cancer risk in female offspring

High levels of cadmium in soy formula

Soy linked to peanut allergy and increased risk for asthma

Whole milk vs. soy beverage — asthma risk

Persistent sexual arousal syndrome associated with increased soy intake

Genistein: Does it prevent or promote breast cancer?

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Depleted Uranium: A Crime Against Wisdom

October 7th, 2008

Depleted Uranium: A Crime Against Wisdom

Wed, 11/14/2007 – 17:10 — treeoflife


The Issue of Depleted Uranium (DU) is extraordinarily important. Though it represents a clear threat to the health of all humanity, and all life forms on planet Earth, it also represents a clear debasement and loss of any moral or ethical standards by the U.S. and by the rest of the world in allowing DU to be used in warfare. Scientists, medical professionals, war veterans, active duty personnel, international lawyers and the global human community are calling for an awareness of this crisis and simply to stop the use of Depleted Uranium, in order to preserve life on the planet.


It is a crisis that is clearly greater than even cancer or HIV/AIDS. It is contributing to an awesome increase in all types of cancers, birth defects, and disease in people and plant and wildlife all over the world.


According to Geophysisist Leuren Moret, the equivalent of atomic bombs released by the use of DU in Iraq in 2003 is 400,000 Hiroshima bombs. We need to be clear that these DU particles have a half-life of 4.5 billion years. In other words, its effects will not blow away in a few years.


DU does not mean it is not radioactive. Depleted Uranium is 60% as radioactive as pure U-238 and it is 99.3% pure U-238, .7% U-235.


Upon impact, there is a tremendous amount of heat – up to 5,000 degrees Fahrenheit – which creates ceramic Depleted Uranium Oxide particles (DUO) which are small enough to be inhaled into the lungs, and light enough to travel in the upper levels of our atmosphere.


This is a global issue. The DU has been given to a variety of national armies, and it needs to be addressed on an international level. It is not about right or wrong in a limited sense. It is not even a political question. It is a question of common sense. As Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “We can have a future of nonviolence, or a future of nonexistence.” Depleted Uranium, as we will see in a moment, is a future that can take us into nonexistence.


In 1991, an estimated 375 tons of Depleted Uranium were dumped on Iraq, and approximately 2200 tons were dumped in the war in 2003. According to geiger counter readings in four different sites, the radiation levels were between one and two thousand times higher than normal background radiation. Millions of Iraqis have been affected. Of the 697,000 American troops that were there in 1991, about half of them have since reported serious medical problems and significant increases in birth defects in their newborn children. For perspective, in Vietnam, about 10% of veterans reported problems, and in WWII about 3% reported, and now we are looking at 50%. About 1/3rd of the Iraq vets – 230,000 people – are on Veterans Administration (VA) Disability. That is a huge increase over previous wars.


What we are looking at is something beyond the imagination. DU has been blamed on the health level for the effects of the Gulf War Syndrome, including chronic muscle and joint pain, fatigue, and memory loss among at least 200,000 soldiers. Cancer in Iraq, according to a UN Subcommission, seems to have increased between 7 and 10 times, and deformities, or congenital defects between 4 and 6 times expected levels of the norm.  A United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority report said up to 500,000 people would die before the end of the century due to radioactive debris left behind in the desert. The use of Depleted Uranium has lead to birth defects in the children of our veterans, and it is believed to be a cause of anophtalmos, meaning babies born without eyes. The usual rate for this is one in fifty million births. In Baghdad, they had eight cases in just two years.


A study of 251 Gulf War Veterans from Mississippi conducted by the Veterans Administration showed that 67% of veterans had children with severe illnesses, missing eyes, blood infections, respiratory problems, and fused fingers. This is very significant data. Their babies were born after the war – they were deemed to have severe defects. The newborns had missing: brains, arms, eyes, organs. . . they had blood diseases. The Gulf War Veterans came back with DU in their clothing, bodies, and semen. These were people who had “normal” babies before they went over there – now they are running 67% birth defects. The DU is in their semen, and when they have intercourse they are infecting their mates, as well.


There is a tremendous amount of research throughout the world. It took us 30 years to prove that lung cancers were related to smoking, we seem to have the same kind of denial going on with the use of DU. The Army is in a difficult place because DU is an incredible weapon – it is a superior weapon for destroying an enemy’s tanks and society. DU is the most devastating weapon we have. Unfortunately, it is another form of nuclear warfare. According to Dr. Caldell from Australia, Leuren Moret, a Geoscientist who works almost around the clock educating citizens about this issue, has one of the best bio-physics and humanitarian understanding of the issue. She is talking about the genetic future of humanity, which is at risk from the use of DU. She points out that vast regions around the world, as well as in our atmosphere are contaminated with DU. She makes the point that within four days, DU is already in the United States, carried by the winds and dust storms from the Sahara Desert, coming across in the hurricanes, dropping more intensively in Florida, Texas, and the East Coast of the US, but impacts the entire planet. Moret is an expert in atmospheric dust. These dust storms are millions of square miles and transport millions of tons of sand dust around the world.


There is a creeping awareness that something ANTI-HUMAN AND POWERFULLY DELETERIOUS TO ALL LIFE ON THE PLANET is going on. Even the World Health Organization in 2003 said that they expect the global cancer rates to increase 50% by the year 2020. The infant mortality, which began to go down when they had a nuclear test ban in 1963, is now rising around the world. This is an indicator of radioactive pollution.


Our Veterans are particularly affected by Depleted Uranium. The use of DU in Iraq is not a isolated issue. The UN used it in the Balkans; it is a problem in Afghanistan, Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, as well. These are the kinds of things that the reports are bringing back, though much of this information has been suppressed. If you were in a Bradley Fighting Vehicle, you might be coming home with rectal cancer from sitting on DU ammunition boxes. The young women are reporting problems with endometriosis, which is the lining of the uterus not functioning right; 18-19 year olds are coming back from the Middle East with uterine cancer. . . the problem is that they are not being diagnosed, so this information is not showing up in the official military records. There is a group of 20 soldiers that fought from Kuwait to Baghdad in 2003 all fighting on the ground – eight of them now have malignancies – a very high figure for people in their 20s and 30s. The mental state is also affected. DU Oxides, created at high temperatures, are insoluble and 100 times smaller than a white blood cell. The soldiers breathe in these particles through the nose into the olfactory and these particles go to the brain, affecting cognitive and other levels of brain function. There is significant supporting research on this, but for our purposes here we are trying to keep this simple, but there is a particular physiology that is being affected. It damages the mood control mechanism in the brain.


The effect on the brain was studied by the World Health Organization (WHO), and they published a survey in the Journal of the American Medical Association (AMA) which was very interesting. They could see the variation on the effect of mental functioning. In Japan it was 8.8 percent; in Nigeria, 4.7 percent; Ukraine (where they had Chernobyl) 20.4 percent; Spain 9.2 percent; Italy 8.2 percent; France (where there is 75 percent reliance on nuclear power) 18.4 percent; Mexico 12.2%; the United States 26.2 percent – the highest. We have to remember that we have done a lot of nuclear testing in the U.S. and we are paying the price.


We are looking at a threat to the whole world population, that includes all living systems: the plants, the animals, the bacteria. . . everything is being affected. It is in the air, the water, and the soil. It comes across not only in hurricanes, but in what we call the stratosphere—such as where the spacecraft go. DU has been found on the surface of spacecraft. So it’s a little bit different than the upper atmosphere. We can call it the lower-orbital space. It is coming across very high up and then comes down in the rains.


In the U.S., water and milk have 15 times the amount of DU that vegetables do. Animals concentrate the DU in their cells at 30 times the level of their environment. It is imperative that we consider whether we want to consume flesh food in the light of this reality.


Depleted Uranium is used by a variety of countries – about 17 at this point. These countries are CURRENTLY using/stockpiling DU weaponry: U.S., Great Britain, France, Russia, Sweden, Taiwan, Thailand, Korea, Bahrain, Israel, Jordan, Egypt, Pakistan, Japan, Thailand, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, Greece, Turkey, and Kuwait. So it is not a small thing. Helen Caldicott has said, “Never in my wildest dreams did I think that the U.S. would be donating nuclear shells to poison it own soldiers and surrounding several civilian populations with radioactivity.”


In 1996 the UN passed a resolution specifically about DU, that DU weapons are Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD). They are illegal under all international laws and treaties, and the European Parliament in 2001 passed a resolution against DU, and that resolution was actually the result of the use of DU by NATO in Bosnia. NATO and peace personnel had much higher rates of leukemia as a result.


At this moment, the countries of Yugoslavia, Iraq, and Afghanistan are radiologically/radioactively uninhabitable due to the military application of these nuclear weapons. The amount of birth defects in Iraq has distinctly increased, based on data from a variety of studies by Iraqi physicians. What we are dealing with is a high level denial, even though we are getting very powerful data, particularly from Iraq. In Bastra, after Gulf War I, there was maybe one baby a week born with birth defects, now it is 10-12 a day.  There have been International Conferences where they have reported their data, such as the World Uranium Weapons Conference at the University of Hamburg, Germany in October, 2003. After Gulf War I, the frequency of cancer cases increased five-fold, with lung, leukemia, breast, skin, lymphoma, and liver cancer cases being the biggest. Solid tumors were more frequent. Before the War the prevalence of cancer diseases in decreasing order was:


    * Lung

    * Lymphoma

    * Larynx

    * Leukemia

    * Breast


After Gulf War I by 1998 the order became:


    * Lung

    * Lymphoma

    * Breast

    * Larynx

    * Skin

    * Leukemia


But there was a sharp increase in most types of cancers. Lung was a five-fold increase and now we are looking at possibly a six-fold increase in the U.S. this year (2006). Lymphoma is four-fold, breast was six-fold, larynx was four-fold, and skin was an eleven-fold increase in cancer. Among the less common cancers the incidence was sharper: uterine cancer ten-fold; colon six-fold; hypernephroma (kidney) seven-fold; malignant myeloma (bone cancer), sixteen-fold; liver, eleven-fold; ovary, sixteen-fold; perinatal tumor twenty times greater. These are horrendous statistics.


The results clearly show a change in the pattern of different types of cancer as well as the increasing cancer rates. What we need to also understand is that these rates come on very specifically, such as four years later you have an increase in leukemia which is typical of what you would see with radiation exposure. You have an increase in still births, congenital abnormalities, and infertility. The still births increased 190%. Congenital abnormalities 520%; infertility 570%. The same kind of results are being reported in Bosnia.


If we look further, basically a planetary problem we start to look at some other studies that are going on. In Iraq, looking at some of the epidemiologies of the Iraq doctors, what we are seeing is basically an incredible ten-fold average increase in all cancers, including:


    * Lymphatic

    * Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma

    * Hodgkin’s


In Italy, the Italian/Kosovo Study showed that although the normal risk for leukemia is 1.5 deaths per 100,000, that according to the Royal Society the ­Italian/Portuguese Peacekeepers had up to 42 leukemia deaths per 100,000 – a significant increase from 1.5. This is what got people so upset in Europe over the use of Depleted Uranium, and why the European community has voted against the use of DU weaponry.


In 1997-98 the Balkan medias reported a dramatic increase of leukemia and other cancer development within the population of Srpska as well as an increase in malformations.


So again, not just Iraq, but in the Balkans we are having this kind of thing. Cows in this region showed reduced and bloody milk production, and in other cows their production stopped completely. In several cases, calves had malformations – born without skin, missing claws and tongues – similar levels of defects to what we are seeing in the human population all over the world.


The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs reports that DU has an effect on the shape of chromosomes in terms of increase of [sister-chromated exchange].


People from all over the world have expressed concern. The Gulf War Syndrome is a result of a kind of political non-thinking as Henry Kissenger put it succinctly: “Military men are just dumb. Stupid animals to be used as pawns in foreign policy.” Kissenger’s position is one of total moral bankruptcy.


This is what we are facing. The Gulf War Syndrome includes chronic fatigue, headache, rashes, joint pain, muscle pain nerve damage, neurological damage, kidney damage, cardiovascular disease, thyroid disease, multiple cancers, autoimmune deficiencies, fevers and night sweats,  fluid build-up, sleep disturbances, abnormal births and birth defects, menstrual problems, reduced IQ, confusion, memory loss, blood in stools, Epstein-Barr Syndrome, genetic alternations, sinus diseases, loss of smell, unusual hair loss, chemical sensitivities, asthma, and vision problems – just to name a small portion.


This is very, very serious, and we need to look deeply and investigate: why are people doing it, and is this even legal, using the perspective of International Law and the international legal community.


The biggest concern when we look at the Depleted uranium issue – and the use of atomic energy in general is that this affects every single living thing on the planet. The genome for the entire planet for all humanity – potentially for all time – is being affected by DU. We are still arguing about whether or not nuclear radioactivity causes a problem. There was a study done in the U.S. that if you are within 100 miles of a nuclear plant – and we have 110 nuclear plants in the US (the most of any country in the world) – they found, according to the Center for Disease Control on Breast Cancer Deaths between 1985 and 1989, that anyone within 100 miles of a nuclear plants is where two-thirds of all breast cancer deaths occurred in the U.S. DU is adding insult to that injury.


Other high-radiation places that we should be concerned about are Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico; the Idaho Nuclear Engineering Lab in Idaho; and Hanford in Washington State, where Plutonium is used. Some people feel they have contaminated the entire Columbia River Watershed – almost the entire state of Washington.


So the immediate effects of this exposure is a metallic taste in the mouth. Our soldiers are experiencing: muscle aches, loss of energy, incontinence, destruction of the neuromuscular system. As the Uranium decays it turns into other radioactive isotopes. Teeth start to fall apart because the Uranium competes with calcium. It is an extraordinary problem and they say there is no treatment, but I think there is. And for certain there is prevention. Stop using DU. Let us look at the problem a little bit more, and take a look at what needs to happen.


On a psycho-spiritual level the cause of the problem is EGO. Ego takes us into the very darkest regions of the causes of war, which we can call greed, profit, racism, religious injustice, ethnocentrism, etc. But now we have taken things to a new level, because we are at this point finding that the EGO has become a planetary parasite that threatens to kill and destroy a whole world. Fortunately, some are working at the International level to fight this planetary parasite. One is Karen Parker.


Work by Karen Parker in the U.S. perhaps most clearly elucidates the illegality of Depleted uranium. Many attorneys all over the world have done excellent work on this issue, but her approach is explicit. Parker states, “The use of DU would necessarily constitute grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions and other violations of humanitarian armed conflict.” The presentation of the 1996 Session of the UN Commission on Human Rights (The Commission at the August 1996 Session of the UN Subcommittee on the Prevention, Discrimination, and Protection of Minorities,” now renamed as the UN Subcommission on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights, focused on the US DU weaponry of the first Gulf War.


As it unfolds, we have to address why these weapons are illegal. According to Karen Parker, A weapon is made illegal two ways:


(1) by adoption of a specific treaty banning it; and (2) because it may not be used without violating the existing law and customs of war. A weapon made illegal only because there is a specific treaty banning it is only illegal for countries that ratify such a treaty. A weapon that is illegal by operation of existing law is illegal for all countries. This is true even if there is also a treaty on this weapon and a country has not ratified that treaty. As there is no specific treaty banning depleted uranium weapons, its illegality must be established the second way.


The laws and customs of war (humanitarian law) includes all treaties governing military operations, weapons and protection of victims of war as well as all customary international law on these subjects. In other words, in evaluating whether a particular weapon is legal or illegal when there is not a specific treaty, the whole of humanitarian law must be consulted.


There are four rules derived from the whole of humanitarian law regarding weapons:

(1) Weapons may only be used in the legal field of battle, defined as legal military targets of the enemy in the war. Weapons may not have an adverse effect off the legal field of battle. (The “territorial” test).

(2) Weapons can only be used for the duration of an armed conflict. A weapon that is used or continues to act after the war is over violates this criterion. (The “temporal” test).

(3) Weapons may not be unduly inhumane. (The “humaneness” test). The Hague Conventions of 1899 and 1907 use the terms “unnecessary suffering” and ”superfluous injury” for this concept.

(4) Weapons may not have an unduly negative effect on the natural environment. (The “environmental” test).


DU weaponry fails all four tests. (1) It cannot be “contained” to legal fields of battle and thus fails the territorial test. Instead the DU is airborn far a-field of legal targets to illegal (civilian) targets: hospitals, schools, civilian dwellings and even neighboring countries with which the user is not at war. (2) It cannot be “turned off” when the war is over. Instead, DU weaponry continues to act after hostilities are over and thus fail the temporal test. Even with rigorous clean-up of war zones, the air-born particles have a half life of billions of years and have potential to keep killing and injuring former combatants and noncombatants long after the war is over. (3) It is inhumane and thus fails the humaneness test. DU weaponry is inhumane because of how it can kill—by cancer, kidney disease, etc.—and long after the hostilities are over when the killing must stop. DU is inhumane because it can cause birth (genetic) defects such as cranial facial anomalies, missing limbs, grossly deformed and non-viable infants and the like. It effects children who may never be a military target and who are born after the war is over. The tetragenic nature of DU weapons and the possible burdening of the gene pool of future generations raise the possibility that the use of DU weaponry is genocide. (4) It cannot be used without unduly damaging the natural environment and thus fails the environment test. Damage to the natural environment includes contamination of water and agricultural land necessary for the subsistence of the civilian population far beyond the lifetime of that population. Clean up is an inexact science and, in any case, extremely expensive—far beyond the ability of a poor country to pay for.


One of the more useful provisions of treaty-based humanitarian law is the “Martens Clause” to the Hague Convention of 1907 that is repeated in subsequent humanitarian law treaties. The Marten’s Clause provides that in situations where there is not a specific treaty provision (which is the case with DU), the international community is nonetheless bound by “the rules of the principles of the law of nations, as they result from the usages established among civilized peoples, from the laws of humanity and the dictates of the public conscience.” There is a huge anti-DU international effort from a wide array of groups representing every facet of civil society. The existence of the anti-DU network is legally relevant to the finding that DU is illegal, and buttresses arguments that use of DU weaponry is a war crime or crime against humanity and may play a decisive role in stopping proliferation of these weapons.


What has happened to our civilization? Have we lost contact with the meaning of life, or what is means to be a human being? Have we lost contact with the basic laws of human interaction. Are we willing to take responsibility to turn this around? Do we want to turn this situation from a lose-lose situation to an inspiration to shift world consciousness so that we are not destroying the planet?


We do have some ways to do this. I hope in time, depending on funding, we should be able to start certain programs to clean up the environment of radioactivity. Such things are available and will be discussed when we put them into action. In the meantime we have discussed some preventatives. One of the simplest and least expensive is Natural Cellular Defense (NCD), used in Chernobyl. In over 40 people examined at the Tree of Life Rejuvenation Center , 39 of the 40 had DU in brain, breast and liver, and in one week in our detox fasting spiritual program, 99 percent of the participants were DU-free. But this will not solve the root cause of the problem, which is the ego that leads us to crimes against wisdom as it manifests in use of DU in war and use of radiological and nuclear weapons. Depleted Uranium is a Nuclear Weapon.


Below is a series of some organizations that you can contact to raise the consciousness and bring this to a reality. The work must be done at the governmental level, including national and international at the UN. This letter is to strongly encourage you, as people who care more than just about your personal health – but for the soul of the planet – to take action.


Peace be with you, and the whole living planet.



This is a draft by former United Nations Attorney General Ramsey Clark: “An International Appeal to Ban the Use of Depleted Uranium Weapons”:


“Depleted Uranium Weapons are an unacceptable threat to life, a violation of International Law, and an assault on human dignity. To safeguard the future of humanity, we call for an unconditional International Ban forbidding: research, manufacture, testing, transportation, possession, and use of DU for military purposes. In addition, we call for the immediate isolation and containment of all DU weapons and wastes, through classification of DU as a radioactive and hazardous substance, the cleanup of existing DU contaminated areas, comprehensive efforts to prevent human exposure, and medical care for those who have been exposed.”


This is an eloquent and very clear statement of what must happen. It has the moral, physical, and spiritual aspects that reinstate our dignity as human beings and as a part of the intelligent cosmos and expression of God at its highest level.



The International Action Center: Depleted Uranium Education Project


Action Guide:


The Traprock Peace Center

World Uranium Weapons Conference Website:

Action Guide:

103A Keets Road

Deerfield, MA 01342

(413) 773-7427


Military Toxics Project

The mission of the Military Toxics Project is to unite activists, organizations, and communities in the struggle against military pollution, to assure it’s clean up, to limit the transport of hazardous materials, and to advance the development and implementation of preventative solutions to the toxic and radioactive pollution caused by military activities.  The MTP mission is based on mutual respect and justice for all peoples, free from any form of discrimination or bias.


The purpose of the Military Toxics Project is to provide information, education, networking and organizing resources. MTP serves as a bridge and facilitator for organizations concerned with military pollution issues. MTP fosters a relationship of mutual respect and support with its members, networks, and collegiate campaigns around the country. MTP works to assist local communities, not for them but with them. MTP activities focus on both service and organizing efforts. MTP helps member organizations and networks to project their individual voices nationally and internationally.


MTP has been organizing around depleted uranium issues since 1993, when it formed the Depleted Uranium Citizens Network and released “Uranium Battlefields at Home and Abroad”, a report by network members Rural Alliance for Military Accountability, Citizen Alert, and Progressive Alliance for Community Empowerment. MTP organized the first international conference on DU munitions, which brought together community activists, military veterans, and technical experts opposed to the use of depleted uranium weapons. MTP has produced a variety of other reports and fact sheets on DU, supported scientific research into the health effects of DU, and founded an email discussion list about DU that serves over 150 activists in two dozen countries. MTP is a founding member of the International Coalition to Ban Uranium Weapons, and continues to support local organizing around DU and network local organizations who want to work together to oppose DU on the national and international levels.


Please visit


Contact:       MTP

P.O. Box 558

Lewiston, ME 04243

(207) 783-5091


Researched and Edited by Tree of Life Vegan/Live Food Nutrition Masters Graduate David Rainoshek ( For more on the Masters Program in Vegan and Live Food Nutrition, and all Educational Programs at the Tree of Life Rejuvenation Center, visit


For full documentation of this conference:


Source: The Trojan Horses of Nuclear War,


The Tree of Life Rejuvenation Center can be found online:


    * Education


©2008 Tree of Life Rejuvenation Center Patagonia, AZ tel: 866-394-2520


Tree of Life Rejuvenation Center

Leading the world in fasting, detoxification, spirituality and health education: CALL US: 866 394 2520


Dangers of Aspartame

October 6th, 2008

Subject: FW: Must see on Aspartame  

This is a rather long video but well done and WELL worth watching! Eye opening to realize the power of money to buy off FDA investigators. Monsanto money. Big business that is killing people and they don’t care, as long as their money keeps rolling in!

On the other hand, these same money grubbing bastards harrass those who try to get stevia (a harmless sweetener) on the market.

If you know anyone dringing Diet Coke or using anything with aspartame, you will want to forward them this video.

Subject: Aspartame by Dragonfly guest/writer, Bill Stubble (2003)

Hello….here’s the aspartame story:

Bill Strubbe about 4200 words

3977 Docs Ranch Rd slides available

Occidental, CA 95465


Killing Me Sweetly. . . . How Safe is Aspartame?

Evelyn Blakes downhill spiral began in 1994 when her son Jack moved in to model her home. Since both were overweight he suggested they diet together. They switched to diet sodas in the summer heat, and began using Equal as a sugar substitute.

“After about four months I began feeling nervous and uneasy,” Evelyn recalls. “My heart was beating so irregular I wondered if I was having a heart attack. My nurse friend suggested I have tests done, which I put off. Then one night I woke with this very strange feeling, as if I was in a zombie state. I felt as if my tongue was swelling, my teeth clinched tight.”

She began to shiver, and by the time shed reached her sons room her body shook uncontrollably and she couldnt talk. The frightening incident subsided after about 20 minutes and they decided against an emergency room visit. Soon afterwards EKG and blood work was done: all normal. “Not making any connection, we continued on our diet and used Equal in everything — coffee, breads, cereal, salad  and the seizures got worse.”

Though millions of people sip diet sodas, ingest yogurt lite and sugarless Jello, and stir Nutrasweet into their coffee without noticeable side effect, Evelyn Blakes ordeal is only one of thousands of alleged “aspartame poisoning” complaints registered over the last two decades. By the Federal Food and Drug Administrations (FDA) own admission 73% of all food complaints are aspartame related, most commonly headaches, memory loss, depression, heart palpitations, and vision problems. Numerous others adamantly believe their prolonged use of aspartame is the root cause behind permanent nerve damage, brain lesions and tumors, and even untimely deaths of family members.

“Since many consumers may never make the connection between their maladies and aspartame intake, conceivably those complaints are only the tip of the iceberg,” said Betty Martini, who heads Mission Possible International, which attempts to educate the public about aspartame.

Industry and FDA spokespersons point out that these accounts are “merely anecdotal,” “coincidental,” and “unscientific,” but the shear volume of accusations in itself continues to raise questions about aspartames approval process; the questionable independence of industry-funded research; the ethics of the revolving door relationships between FDA officials and industry; and a call for the reexamination of this chemical that is now found in grocery stores, on kitchen shelves, and in childrens lunch boxes.

Nutrasweet  along with Equal, Spoonful, Indulge, Equal-Measure, etc.  are brand names for aspartame, discovered by accident in 1965 when a chemist, James Schlatter, of G.D. Searle was testing an anti-ulcer drug: he happened to lick his hand and the rest is history. Originally approved for use in dry foods in July 1974, aspartame was put on hold several months later due to objections filed by neuroscience researchers and consumer attorneys.

When ingested NutraSweet breaks down into aspartic acid, a chemical found in the brain; phenylalanine, an amino acid; and methanol (wood alcohol) that is converted to formaldehyde, which in high levels can cause damage and blindness. Monsanto and the FDA argue that methanol is present in such small amount that it poses no health risks, and is broken down and harmlessly passed from the body. They also insist that except for people with the rare disease, phenylketonuria, aspartame is safe.

Dr. Russell L. Blaylock, Professor of Neurosurgery at the Medical University of Mississippi, explains in his book, Excitotoxins: The Taste that Kills (Health Press, 1994) that though aspartate (and glutamate in the chemically related substance MSG) are neurotransmitters normally found in the brain and spinal cord, when aspartate reaches certain levels  as when someone daily consumes a dozen diet sodas or aspartame packets in their coffee  it causes the death of brain neurons.

The risk to infants, children, and pregnant women are higher because the blood/brain barrier, which normally protects the brain, is not fully developed during infancy and childhood. Dr. Blaylock, and numerous other doctors and researchers, believe that long-term exposure to excitotoxins may play a part in diseases such as early onset Alzheimer’s (now reaching epidemic proportions in the USA), Parkinson’s (Michael Fox, former spokesperson for Diet Pepsi who reputedly drank lots of it, now has Parkinsons at such an early age), Lupus, brain lesions, brain tumors, epilepsy, memory loss, multiple sclerosis, and some hearing problems.

Dr. John Olney, a neuroscientist at Washington University Medical Center in St. Louis, who has demonstrated the harmful effects of excitotoxins in animals and testified before Congress, believes that both glutamate and aspartate damage areas of the brain controlling endocrine functions leading to obesity. Olney posits that the 30% increase in obesity in America in the past decade might be related to the increase use of aspartame

In the late 1970s, after the questionable early aspartame safety tests, the Universities Associated for Education in Pathology (UAREP) carried out an extensive audit. “While there were a few inaccuracies (in the original safety tests) there was nothing convincing to keep aspartame off the market,” insists David Hattan, Ph.D., acting director of FDA’s Division of Health Effects Evaluation. “The large body of animal and clinical research carried out in a controlled environment convinces me that aspartame is safe.”

But a number of his colleagues disagreed. During a Congressional investigation in 1985 to scrutinize G.D. Searle’s aspartame safety tests, Dr. Jacqueline Verrett, a former FDA toxicologist, and FDA task force member testified that the tests were a “disaster” and should have been “thrown out.” She believed the studies left many unanswered questions about possible birth defects and aspartames safety. Dr. Marvin Legator, Professor of Environmental Toxicology at the University of Texas, characterized them as “scientifically irresponsible and disgraceful” and “I’ve never seen anything as bad as Searle’s.”
    Because of FDA budget limitations its standard procedure for the bulk of initial safety tests to be financed, designed, and carried out by the company with a vested interest in the product. The potential for skewed results is called into question when 74 out of 74 of industry-sponsored articles attested to aspartame’s safety, while 84 out of 91 of the non-industry sponsored articles identified problems with the chemical.
“Ill admit that theres validity to these concerns, but its not unusual for industry to fund studies because theyre expensive and who else will?” counters a spokeswoman at Merisant Co. (G.D. Searle, the original makers of Nutrasweet, was bought by Monsanto in the 1980s. This past year, Monsanto sold Nutrasweet to J.W. Childs, and divested itself of Equal, which is now Merisant Co.) “The studies must follow very specific guidelines and protocols, and have independent reviewers. Its a disservice to the fine scientists involved whose reputations are besmirched by aspartame detractors.”

And whats to keep adverse industry test results from disappearing altogether? According to a newly come forward reliable source (who chose to remain unnamed but has signed a sworn affidavit), G.D Searle in the early 1980s conducted aspartame research in five communities in Central and South America, the groups were told they were ingesting a papaya extract. (Monsantos PR department denies that this research was ever undertaken). By the end of these 18-month studies, the source recalls from translating the reports from Spanish into English that many subjects experienced grand mal seizures, damage to the central nervous system causing muscular and neural instability, hemorrhaging, brain tumors, and radical alterations in behavior.

“When I finished the project, I was told to destroy all my records and copies. If the report of those studies had reached the FDA, there is no way they could have approved aspartame,” the source said. “Imagine my surprise when I found out soon after that aspartame is being consumed en masse! I urged my family and everyone I knew not to use anything containing aspartame because as I called it it would make their brains into mush…”
    The late Dr. M. Adrian Gross, former senior FDA toxicologist, stated in his testimony before Congress, “Beyond a shadow of a doubt, aspartame triggers brain tumors” and “therefore, by allowing aspartame to be placed on the market, the FDA has violated the Delaney Amendment,” which makes it illegal to allow any residues of cancer causing chemicals in foods. His last words to the Congress were: “And if the FDA itself elects to violate the law, who is left to protect the health of the public?”
      The cancer causing agent referred to above is  diketopiperazine, or DKP. James Bowen, M.D. wrote “As it (DKP) breaks down, aspartame creates, and with the intact aspartame molecule you have the two greatest brain tumor
carcinogens discovered by science thus far responsible for the massive brain tumor epidemic we now witness.” In the studies, some of the rats developed pituitary adenomas, astrocytoma, and glioblastoma, a rapidly spreading brain tumor.
So concerned was G.D. Searle about the toxic DKP that its mentioned several times in an early 1970 internal memo distributed by Herbert Helling: “My prime concern at this time is with the production of the DKP and our lack of complete toxicological data on DKP if SC-18362 (aspartames chemical code) went (broke-down) out completely to DKP. We then must consider how much DKP could be formed from the time the system is converted to a wet system to the time of consumption allowing for maximum likely abuse.”

Helling goes on to advise his colleagues: “At this meeting, the basic philosophy of our approach to Food and Drug should be to try to get them to say yes. and to rank the things that we are going to ask for so that we are putting first those questions that we are likely to get yes to, even if we have to throw some in that have no significance to us other than putting them into a yes-saying habit. It would also help if we can get them to get the people involved to do us any sort of favor as this would also help bring them into a subconscious spirit of participation.”
 ”Sounds like the tobacco fraud all over again. But this time, it’s the drug industry, and it’s big,” said Attorney Ed Johnson. “When the class actions (lawsuits) hit, and they will, I predict that theyll rival the tobacco litigation we have seen in the past few years.”
When Johnson, former U.S. Department of Justice Attorney, who for the last 10 years has served as President & CEO of one of the larger lawfirms in San Antonio, saw an expose in December l996 on “60 Minutes” pointing out the alarming and significant rise in brain tumors in the United States is in direct proportion to the rise in the use of aspartame, he never touched the substance again.
   But the damage was already done. Diagnosed with a pituitary adenoma, he underwent two life-threatening surgeries to remove the tumor — which he believes was caused by his heavy ingestion of Diet Coke and Nutrasweet over two decades — and daily radiation therapy for two months. This year at the age of 55, Attorney Johnson, had to retire from practicing law due to the inability to input or retain memory data.
 ”These past couple years I began researching the dangers and symptoms of aspartame,” Attorney Johnson said, “and I have personally found an increasing number of people who have had brain tumors and brain surgeries.”
tests in the U.S.A continued until July 18, 1981 when FDA Commissioner Dr. Arthur Hull Hayes, Jr. disregarded Section 409(c)(3) of the Food Drug and Cosmetic Act (21 U.S.C. 348) — which states that a food additive should not be approved if tests are inconclusive, overruling six of the nine scientists on two agency review panels who felt the studies of brain tumor in rats had been inadequate. Applying an “acceptable daily intake” (ADI), the FDA approved the chemical for use in dry goods, and then raised the ADI in 1983 to enable aspartame in beverages despite the consensus of the National Soft Drink Association that aspartame was too unstable for such use.
In subsequent years, $30 million to $40 million annually was blitzed into advertising by Nutrasweet Co. alone, and ads  featuring the likes of Bill Cosby, Rachel Welch, Joe Montana, and Geraldine Ferraro — by diet soft drink manufacturers and other companies employing the chemical, pushed that figure past $100 million a year, quickly making Nutrasweet a household word.

Soon after, complaints to the FDA began rolling in: headaches, dizziness, anxiety, depression, memory loss, joint pain, vomiting, heart palpitations, slurred speech, seizures, brain tumors, comas, and even deaths attributed to aspartame.

The FDA took “some of these early reports quite seriously” and Monsanto performed follow-up studies. But, according to the principals of science “if test results cannot be reproduced in a controlled setting then you cannot preclude other factors that might have caused seizure expressions,” explains Hattan, who declares he has consumed copious amounts of aspartame with no ill effects. “I think that many of the symptoms attributed to aspartame are actually caused by something else in the individuals environment”

Evelyn seizures got worse, racking her body on a regular basis, sometimes twice a day. She recalls entering into a “zombie stare… looking but not seeing” where she felt as if her body “was attached to an electrical current,” her heart racing. After an episode, she went limp and unable to move

More EKG, EEG, and blood work tests followed, but the doctor could only determine low blood pressure and a slight thyroid problem and sent her home with the appropriate pills. Meanwhile, her hair started falling out by “the handful.” Temporary relief finally arrived when she visited her brother in Georgia where she skipped her diet using Equal  and for three weeks had no attacks or seizures and began to recover.

When she returned home, there was the Equal and the nightmare revved up again. “I thought it might be stress from the remodeling, and other duties I was losing weight, my memory was getting so bad I couldnt remember where I was going when I got into my car. My eyesight suddenly got worse. I was afraid of being alone, never knowing when the next seizure would hit! The doctors could find nothing wrong with me.”

Within several years of aspartame deluging the market a number of FDA and government officials left their posts and took jobs closely linked to the food, beverage, and Nutrasweet industries. While this revolving door between industry and government is not unusual. Shortly after pushing aspartames approval, Dr. Arthur Hull Hayes left the FDA under a shadow of improprieties and became a consultant  at $1000 a day — with Burston-Marsteller, G.D. Searle’s public relations firm. For two decades Hayes has refused to speak with the press.

Wayne Pines, Hayes former top spokesman, previously had joined the firm. In July 1986, Anthony Brunetti, a FDA consumer product officer who drafted the 1983 notice approving Nutrasweets use in soft drinks, joined the Soft Drink Association as a science advisor.
 Documents released by former Sen. Howard Metzenbaum (D.,Ohio) disclosed that in the late 1970s Samuel Skinner and William Conlon, two senior Justice Department prosecutors investigating criminal allegations against G. D.Searle & Co. for falsifying Nutrasweet safety test results, later joined the law firm of Sidley & Austin, which represented G.D. Searle during the lengthy criminal investigation. Mr. Skinner, who knew of the deadline, delayed pursuing prosecution thus placing G.D. Searle beyond the statute of limitations. He subsequently defected to Sidley & Austin in July 1977.
 ”The aspartame manufacturer has a a lot of political influence, and when the FDA Director refused to allow aspartame on the market, he was replaced by one who would, and did,” said Attorney Ed Johnson, former Assistant U.S. Attorney under William S. Sessions (who went on to become the head of the FBI).
“Though its against ethics laws for an FDA official to sit in on any action regarding a firm with which a they had any prior relationship,” explained former FDA investigator, Arthur Evangelista, “there is nothing to stop federal officials from being influenced with promises of a position in a firm they are meant to be regulating.”

Evangelista believes that influence pedaling is rife throughout the FDA, both directly and indirectly, via government PAC monies influencing politicians, which in turn use their influence on regulatory agencies. He recounts an incident where he recommended that two agricultural inspectors in Texas be criminally charged for abuse of power and cover-up. “My FDA supervisor requested the charges be toned down and then sat on the report. Later, I found him at the computer not only re-writing the endorsement of prosecution, but also part of my investigative notes and the report itself!” Evangelista said. “He placed the final version on my desk for signature, and with an accompanying note, requesting I “destroy all previous copies”.

As the revolving door continues to spin, the potential for conflict of interest within the government agency comes into question. In 1999, Dr. Virginia Weldon, Vice President for Public Policy at Monsanto (the parent corporation of Nutrasweet), was considered for the FDAs commissioner post. On June 14, 1999 retiring FDA Commissioner Michael Friedman became the Senior Vice President for Clinical Affairs at G.D Searle & Co.s drug unit. How can the FDA effectively safeguard the public’s health while being influenced from the corporations they are meant to regulate?

A case in point directly related to aspartame is that of stevia, a natural sweetener derived from a plant Stevia rebaudiana Bertoni consumed for centuries by indigenous tribes in Paraguay and Brazil. The leaves of the “honey plant”, which spreads like mint and grow to about three feet, are 30 times sweeter than sugar. In its processed powdered form its 300 times more potent.

In the 1980s, stevia was gaining popularity in the United States. Several companies, including Lipton and Celestial Seasonings, employed it as a flavoring agent. Rather than treating stevia as a natural plant with a long history of safe use — theoretically exempt from the stringent research that a chemical/drug such as aspartame must endure, the FDA began confiscating commercial stevia stocks.

“They came in like we were holding dangerous contraband,” recalls Lynda Sadler, President of Traditional Medicinals in Sonoma County, California. “They embargoed our finished and raw product. We were right in the middle of tea season and we suffered the loss of sales and inventory, not to mention warehouse space that took four years to clear out.”

Sadler was not alone. “In 1991, FDA marshals unexpectedly arrived at my warehouse and announced they were seizing my inventory of stevia teas,” recalls Oscar Rodes, president of Stevita (formerly Steviasweet: forced by the FDA to change their name because it contained the word “sweet”). “Since I did not have time to consult an attorney, they took all my inventory, and when I asked what they would do with the teas, they replied that they were going to burn it.”

Seven years later Rodes was told by the FDA that he must eliminate the word “sweet” from all advertising material including Stevitas web page. He reluctantly agreed to do so, but he refused their request to stop selling books with stevia recipes. “As a result, the FDA seized all our inventory. Finally in desperation, in early May 1998, I notified the FDA that Id stop selling the books in order to have my inventory released,” Rodes recalls. “To my surprise, I received a fax informing that they were sending inspectors to witness the destruction of the books. That was not my deal with them.” The FDA agents arrived to burn the books, found themselves confronted by local TV station camera ready to roll, and they backed off.”

These extreme actions prompted Sadler and others to form the Stevia Committee of the American Herbal Products Association, and to enter petitions with the FDA to prove stevias safety. “Five years and $500,000 later,” adds Sadler, “we could see that no matter what level of science or evidence was presented, it made no difference. The FDA was not going to treat stevia fairly.”

Despite extensive testing of stevia in Japan in the 1970s with no noted side effects — stevia constitutes almost 50% of Japans “artificial” sweetener market, and a dozen other Asian countries approved stevia — the FDA still refuses to “file” submitted petitions citing more than 900 articles and research chronicling stevia’s safe use.

Referring to two controversial and never duplicated studies conducted by Purdue University biochemist Joseph Kuc in 1968, and another published in a Brazilian pharmacological journal in 1988, Linda Goosens, an FDA official for 30 years, said, “Studies have shown that stevia possibly has some deleterious effects (decreased fertility in mice), and until someone comes forth with a study of stevia’s proof of safety as a food additive it will stay on the (FDA’s) shelf.”

Those in the herbal products market contend that because the stevia plant itself cannot be patented, Nutraweet, out to protect its aspartame interests in the nearly one billion dollar artificial sweetener industry, secretly pressured FDA officials to harass stevia users and ultimately to ban it. The former vice President of Public Affairs for Nutrasweet, Richard Nelson, in an article in Self Magazine (June 1997) dismissed it as “one of those urban myths.”

But Nelson’s denial is flatly contradicted by Jim May, owner of Wisdom of the Ancients herbal products in Arizona. “In 1984 the FDA in Phoenix said to me that theres nothing wrong with using stevia as long as they didnt get any complaints,” May recalls. “Later, I was called into the office, and the agent apologized and said that the Washington office demanded that we stop using stevia and he added that it was NutraSweet that tipped them off.”

“Stevia has been banned by the FDA simply because it has not been deemed safe,” said the spokeswoman at Merisant Co., “and it has nothing to do with Nutrasweet.”

“Before we allow any substance into the food supply,” said Hattan at the FDA, “we have rigorous series of tests that must be performed and they (the proponents of stevia) back off because there is no patent for stevia and it cannot enjoy any commercial exclusivity.”

This year, bolstered by opinions from toxicologist Ryan Huxtable of the University of Arizona in Tucson, and Douglas Kinghorn, professor of pharmacognosy at the University of Illinois at Chicago  both who previously publicly supported FDA approval of stevia — the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) issued a statement that “although there is no evidence of harm to people, laboratory studies (in rats) of stevia have found potential cancer and reproductive-health problems” and “Until those concerns are disproven, stevia should not be used by manufacturers in soft drinks, candy, or other foods.”

The FDA was forced through a legal loophole in 1995 to rescind its 1991 import ban against stevia leaves, extracts, and steviosides and allow it to be sold as a dietary supplement. Though consumers still won’t find stevia on packaged food labels as a food additive, its sold among the vitamins or cosmetic products in most health food stores, though theyre not allowed to mention stevias most remarkable quality: its sweetness.

“I am diabetic and alive today due to diet, exercise, and stevia. It doesn’t effect my blood sugar except perhaps to reduce it, and I no longer have to use insulin,” said Larry Hagman, J.R. of Dallas fame. “I use stevia all the time and give it away with recommendations of where to get it I would never use aspartame again knowing how dangerous it is.”

For two decades the aspartame controversy continues to simmer, leaving respectable organizations with opposing verdicts. The American Diabetics, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Medical Association, and the Epilepsy Institute (though it is a matter of record that several of these organization have received donations from Nutrasweet Co.) endorse aspartame as safe. But hundreds of airlines pilots reporting adverse effects from aspartame, including grand mal seizures while in the cockpit, resulted in a dozen aviation publications, including Navy Physiology, Planes & Pilot, Canadian General Aviation News, and Flying Safety, warning pilots not to consume aspartame before or while flying.

“I am not denying these peoples symptoms,” says Hattan at the FDA, “but it is entirely possible that when patients stopped using aspartame they might also coincidentally have had remission of their symptoms.”

Both the FDAs and Nutrasweets categorical dismissal of the thousands of aspartame consumer complaints as coincidental, anecdotal or unscientific has not diminished the convictions of thousands of unpaid volunteers at Aspartame Victims and Their Friends; the Aspartame Toxicity Center (; an Aspartame Detoxification Center in Atlanta, Georgia run by Dr. Paula Rhodes; and chapters in dozens of countries of Operation Mission Possible ( ) compiling aspartame related articles and personal accounts.

As of 1987, the last year that Nutrasweet publicized records, Americans consumed about 17,100,000 pounds of aspartame, with the number estimated to now have topped 25 million pounds. The chemical additive is now sold in dozens of other countries, with aspartame poisoning complaints now being fielded from around the world.
    ”I feel cheated by the government that would allow a poison like this to contaminate our society and our children,” said Gary Fuller, whose doctor agrees that the seizures Gary experienced could have been induced by the 2-3 packets of NutraSweet in coffee, diet sodas, and aspartame-laced flavored waters he consumed daily. “I think the FDA should take another closer and independent look at this poison in our food supply.”
Evelyn decided to try eliminating one by one all the foods was eating, but the seizures continued. “When I finally eliminated Equal, I never had any more attacks or I seizures! Since I stopped Equal on September 13, 1997 my health has slowly improved: My eyesight and memory returned, my hair quit falling out, my blood pressure is good. My heart continues with an irregular beat, which my Cardiologist says only a pacemaker can correct.”

In the fall of 1997, after Evelyn had eliminated aspartame from her life, she called her son, who had moved back to Georgia, to tell him of her recovery. “He told me he had real bad headaches, had arthritis in his hands, down his neck into his back and was not able to work. He was on the verge of bankruptcy and was depressed. He told me later that he was considering suicide As we spoke he was drinking a diet coke and said that he drank several a day. I told him to dump the diet sodas, quit using Equal” Jack followed his mothers advice and within weeks he was back to work.

“Because of Equal my life for four years was one living hell,” Evelyn said. “Can’t someone do something about this unregulated chemically engineered drug called Equal/Aspartame that has affected thousands?”


Mission Possible International

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Bill Strubbe is a California based free-lance writer who confesses to having once been addicted to SweetTarts.