Category: Natural Health


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Daily International News

Study: Processed Meat Raises Colorectal Cancer Risk

Jessica Berman

Many studies have shown that eating too much red meat is bad for your health; but, a new study has found that eating processed meat significantly increases the risk of colorectal cancer in some people.Eating five or more servings per week of processed meat more than doubles the risk of colorectal cancer in people who have certain variants of a specific gene, according to Jane Figueiredo of the University of Southern California’s Keck School of Medicine.  Colorectal cancer is a leading form of cancer disease and death worldwide.

The findings are based on a meta-analysis of 10 earlier studies involving 18,000 people in the United States, Canada, Australia and Europe, which looked at the health effects of eating meats that contain nitrates as preservatives.

“It’s anything that is cured, dried, smoked, cooked [or] packaged.  And so the most common items around the countries we were studying would include bacon, ham, hot dogs, sausages, pate, cold cuts,” said Figueiredo.

The scientists compared the blood samples of some 9,000 people with colorectal cancer to 9,000 people without the disease, looking at one particular region of the genome.  Colorectal cancer is a complex illness with some 30 genetic variations tied to an increased risk of developing it.

The researchers found the people with two of the genetic variants that were the focus of the study, and who ate processed meats almost every day, had the highest risk for colorectal cancer.

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This Is Your Brain On Aspartame

This Is Your Brain On Aspartame

Controversy continues to rage over the artificial sweetener aspartame.  Since it was first approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1981, aspartame has made its way into more than 6,000 food items.

 

The FDA claims aspartame is safe but has set an acceptable daily intake of no more than 50 mg per kilogram of body weight.  In other words, an adult weighing 165 pounds should consume no more than 3,750 mg of aspartame a day.  A can of diet soda typically contains about 180 mg of the chemical.  That means the FDA’s “safe” limit equates to about 21 cans of diet soda per day.

But is any level of aspartame really safe?

For decades researchers have claimed aspartame is responsible for headache, memory loss, mood changes, and depression.  Consumer complaints back them up.  Over 75% of adverse reactions to food additives reported to the FDA concern aspartame. Reported problems include headaches, migraines, vision problems, tinnitus, depression, joint pain, insomnia, heart palpitations, and muscle spasms.

Recently researchers from the University of North Dakota wanted to test the safe limits of aspartame over a short period of time.  They found that at just one half of the FDA’s “safe” acceptable daily intake, aspartame caused serious neurobehavioral changes including cognitive impairment, irritable moods, and depression.[i]

 

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Kitchen Cutting Boards Harbor Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria

A new study published in the Journal Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology found that kitchen cutting boards can become contaminated with antibiotic-resistant bacteria from raw meat. Researchers at the University Hospital in Basel, Switzerland looked at 154 cutting boards before they were washed from the hospital and 44 from private homes after they were used to prepare pork, beef, veal, lamb, game, or fish. In addition, kitchen gloves worn during meat preparation were tested.

Cutting BoardThe scientists discovered that 6.5% of the hospital cutting boards and 3.5% of the household cutting boards used to prepare poultry tested positive for “multidrug-resistant E. coli bacteria.” None of the boards used for meat other than poultry dated positive. Fifty percent of the gloves were contaminated with multidrug-resistant E. coli.

 

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Food Poisoning Bulletin

Hepatitis A Exposure at Restaurant in Nyack, NY

Seems like it’s the season for hepatitis A. A confirmed case of acute hepatitis A has been identified in a food handler at the La Fontana restaurant in Nyack, New York. Anyone who ate there between March 19 and April 1, 2014 may have been exposed to hepatitis A.

Hepatitis A Virus

 

The County of Rockland Department of Health is recommending that everyone who ate at the restaurant on March 29, March 30, or April 1, 2014 receive a vaccination. The vaccination is about 80% to 90% effective. The Rockland County Department of Health is offering free vaccines to patrons and employees of the restaurant on Sunday, April 13, 2014 from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm and Monday, April 14, 2014 from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm at the Rockland County Fire Training Center at 35 Firemens Memorial Drive in Pomona.

 

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NY eatery patrons possibly exposed to hepatitis

April 12

The Associated Press

— Health officials say a waiter at a popular Rockland County restaurant may have exposed hundreds of patrons to hepatitis A.

The Journal News reports (http://lohud.us/1hqzs4V ) that the waiter may have exposed customers at La Fontana in Nyack to the disease between March 19 and April 1.

People who ate at the restaurant March 29 through April 1 can get a free hepatitis vaccine Saturday through Monday at the Rockland Fire Training Center in Ramapo.

 

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La Fontana waiter may have exposed hundreds of patrons to hepatitis A, health officials say

Health officials say a waiter at a popular Rockland County restaurant may have exposed hundreds of patrons to hepatitis A.

The Journal News reports that the waiter may have exposed customers at La Fontana in Nyack to the disease between March 19 and April 1.

People who ate at the restaurant March 29 through April 1 can get a free hepatitis vaccine Saturday through Monday at the Rockland Fire Training Center in Ramapo.

 

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Consumer alert: GMO labeling to be outlawed by ‘Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act’ introduced today in Congress

 

GMO

Thursday, April 10, 2014
by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger
Editor of NaturalNews.com (See all articles…)

 

(NaturalNews) A proposed new federal law just introduced by Rep. G.K. Butterfield (a Democrat) and Rep. Mike Pompeo (a Republican) would outlaw state-enacted GMO labeling laws. The new law, ridiculously called the Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act, is actually an last-ditch, desperate effort by the biotech industry and the GMA to forever bury the truth about GMOs so that consumers don’t know they’re eating poison.

According to mainstream media reports (1), the bill would require the FDA to mandate GMO labeling only if those foods “are found to be unsafe or materially different from foods produced without biotech ingredients.”

Because the FDA and USDA have already decided, against all scientific evidence, that GMOs are “safe” and “not materially different” from other foods, this requirement is nothing but sheer sleight of hand and a pandering to idiocy. In truth, this new bill, if passed into law, would allow food companies to permanently and insidiously hide GMOs in all their products forever, nullifying the numerous state-based GMO labeling laws which are on the verge of passing.

The Environmental Working Group calls this proposed new law the “DARK Act” (Denying Americans the Right to Know), saying:

After two states have passed GE labeling bills and more than 30 others are poised to consider similar labeling bills and ballot initiatives, the food and biotech industry have goat-roped some members of Congress into introducing legislation to block state GE labeling laws.

Push for GMOs run by criminally-minded organizations

GMOs have already been restricted or banned in over 60 countries (2), and Americans are very close to achieving victory in state-based GMO labeling campaigns. The very idea that American consumers might find out they’ve been eating GMO poisons in most of their favorite foods is so horrifying to the biotech industry (and the processed food front groups) that its enforcers are now seeking this “nuclear option” to legally deceive consumers about GMOs with the complicity of the FDA.

 

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U.S. bill seeks to block mandatory GMO food labeling by states

April 9 Wed Apr 9, 2014 12:46pm EDT

(Reuters) – A Republican congressman from Kansas introduced legislation on Wednesday that would nullify efforts in multiple states to require labeling of genetically modified foods

The bill, dubbed the “Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act” was drafted by U.S. Rep. Mike Pompeo from Kansas, and is aimed at overriding bills in roughly two dozen states that would require foods made with genetically engineered crops to be labeled as such.

The bill specifically prohibits any mandatory labeling of foods developed using bioengineering.

“We’ve got a number of states that are attempting to put together a patchwork quilt of food labeling requirements with respect to genetic modification of foods,” said Pompeo. “That makes it enormously difficult to operate a food system. Some of the campaigns in some of these states aren’t really to inform consumers but rather aimed at scaring them. What this bill attempts to do is set a standard.”

Consumer groups have been arguing for labeling because of questions they have both about the safety for human health and the environmental impacts of genetically modified foods, also called GMOs.

Ballot measures in California in 2012 and last year in Washington state narrowly lost after GMO crop developers, including Monsanto Co., and members of the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) poured millions into campaigns to defeat the measures.

The companies say the crops are safe and cite many scientific studies back those claims. Pompeo on Wednesday reiterated those claims, stating GMOS are safe and “equally healthy” and no labeling is needed.

“It has to date made food safer and more abundant,” said Pompeo. “It has been an enormous boon to all of humanity.”

But there are also many scientific studies showing links to human and animal health problems, and many indicating environmental damage related to GMO crops.

 

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Congress considers blocking GMO food labeling

Published time: April 09, 2014 20:10
Edited time: April 10, 2014 11:01
AFP Photo / Robyn Beck

AFP Photo / Robyn Beck

A new bill introduced in Congress looks to ban states from implementing their own labeling laws when it comes to food containing genetically engineered ingredients.

According to Reuters, US Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.) introduced the legislation on Wednesday, which is intended to head off bills in about 24 states that would require companies to inform customers when their food is produced using genetically modified organisms (GMOs). Titled the “Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act,” the proposal would forbid states from enacting such proposals.

“We’ve got a number of states that are attempting to put together a patchwork quilt of food labeling requirements with respect to genetic modification of foods,” Pompeo told Reuters. “That makes it enormously difficult to operate a food system. Some of the campaigns in some of these states aren’t really to inform consumers but rather aimed at scaring them. What this bill attempts to do is set a standard.”

Supporters of GMO labeling argue that modified ingredients pose a threat to human health, and that as a result they should be clearly labeled in the marketplace so that consumers can make informed decisions. In addition to health concerns, they also point to the negative environmental consequences that could arise from widespread GMO use, since millions of acres of farmland and weeds are developing resistances to the pesticides used.

Opponents, however, point to their own studies, showing that GMO crops are safe and therefore do not need to be labeled differently than other products.

 

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Food Poisoning Bulletin

British Airways Warning Passengers of Possible Listeria Exposure

Flying Food Group, an airline catering company, is warning passengers who ate an appetizer meal served on British Airways flights that they may have been exposed to Listeria monocytogenes bacteria. The meals were served on British Airways flights 0204, 0206, and 208 on March 19, 2014. The 41 appetizer meals were prepared at the corporation’s facility in Miami.

FPBAirplanecabinListeriosis, the illness caused by the Listeria monocytogenes bacteria, takes up to 70 days to manifest. Anyone who ate the Char Grilled Asparagus and Grapefruit Appetizer meal served on those flights on that date should monitor themselves for the symptoms of listeriosis food poisoning for the next 70 days

 

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Published time: April 04, 2014 04:00

(AFP Photo / Dieter Nagl)

(AFP Photo / Dieter Nagl)

Rep. Mike Pompeo will introduce legislation backed by powerful trade groups to prevent states from passing laws requiring the labeling of genetically-modified foods, according to reports. The bill is linked to biotech giant Monsanto and Koch Industries.

Pompeo will offer the bill in the US House before Congress leaves for Easter recess later this month, The Hill newspaper reported, citing industry sources. Politico also reported on the impending proposal. Pompeo’s office would not comment on the congressman’s intentions for a labeling restriction.

The bill includes a “prohibition against mandatory labeling,” according to The Hill, echoing powerful interest groups that have already declared war against such “right to know” labeling laws around the nation.

It was revealed in recent months that powerful farming and biotechnology interest groups like Monsanto were joining forces – under the name ‘Coalition for Safe Affordable Food‘ – to push a federal voluntary labeling standard for food made with genetically-modified organisms (GMOs) in an effort to stem the tide of state legislation seeking to mandate labeling.

In recent years, voters in states such as California and Washington have narrowly defeated ballot initiatives proposing mandatory GMO labeling, though not without dragging members of the new Coalition into expensive campaigns to defeat the measures. Many other states are now considering their own proposals to label GMO food.

A top member of the Coalition – the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA), a major food industry lobbying group – raised and spent the bulk of the overall $22 million that opponents of labeling sank into defeating Washington State’s ballot initiative on GMO labeling last year. That total number was three times the amount that proponents of labeling spent in the state. GMA was joined in its effort by allies such as biotech giants Monsanto, Bayer, and DuPont.

The Coalition said in February that it would seek to empower the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) “to establish federal standards for companies that want to voluntarily label their product for the absence-of or presence-of GMO food ingredients.” In addition, the Coalition proposes the FDA mandate labels for GMO food or ingredients that the agency deems a “health, safety or nutrition issue,” though no consumables currently fall in such a category.

“The legislation we’re proposing would preclude state legislation that conflicts with the federal standards,” GMA president Pamela Bailey said of the Coalition’s aim, The Hill reported.

 

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Food Poisoning Bulletin

Oklahoma E. Coli Outbreak Investigated

Dr. Lauri Smithee, Acute Disease Service Director of the Oklahoma State Department of Health, spoke to Food Poisoning Bulletin and confirmed that an E. coli outbreak is associated with the Oklahoma Youth Expo held at the Oklahoma state fairgrounds in March 2014. Twelve people are sick, in various stages of confirmation. Four people have been confirmed ill with E. coli infections through lab tests.

Cow State Fair

Two children are sick with hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) and are hospitalized. One is two years old; the other is eight.

The investigation is still broad. Initial cases were reported following a livestock show, but more recent patients said they have had animal contact, but not at that particular show. Right now investigators are concentrating on case control studies and PFGE matches to see if contact with livestock was the cause of the illnesses, or if food or something else made people sick.

 

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     News 9

 

OK State Dept. Of Health Investigates E. coli Outbreak

Posted: Apr 03, 2014 5:55 PM CST Updated: Apr 03, 2014 5:55 PM CST

By Michael Konopasek, News 9 – bio | email
One of the patients, Connor Sneary, is fighting hard at OU Children's Hospital, according to family friends.
One of the patients, Connor Sneary, is fighting hard at OU Children’s Hospital, according to family friends.

OKLAHOMA CITY –

State health officials in Oklahoma are investigating a spike in a deadly strain of E. coli. At least a dozen people, who have attended agricultural events around the state, were hospitalized as of late Thursday, according to the Oklahoma State Department of Health.

Health professionals say they are still in the early stages of their investigation. As of late Thursday, officials had not located a source. One of the patients, Connor Sneary, is fighting hard at OU Children’s Hospital, according to family friends.

“He’s still in ICU in critical condition,” said friend Tina Baker who has been in contact with Connor’s mother.

Connor has a form of E. coli that the family believes may have been contracted at an agricultural event at the Oklahoma State Fair Grounds. Investigators say that is a possibility.

“It does appear to be clustered in groups of people that have attended various agricultural events,” said state health official Lauri Smithee, Ph.D.

 

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The Ottawa County Department of Public Health is investigating a gastrointestinal illness outbreak associated with the Wild Chef Japanese Steakhouse Grill and Bar in Holland Township, Michigan, according to WWMT.com. The restaurant closed voluntarily on Tuesday, April 1, 2014 after a number of customers reported becoming ill.

Hibachi

More than 100 cases are associated with the restaurant. Public health officials are investigating, and waiting for lab results to pinpoint what is causing the illness and if a particular food is responsible. Symptoms reported included nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, cramps, and fever.

 

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  Daily Herald Tribune

Local science project finds high levels of radiation in seaweed

By Elizabeth McSheffrey, Grande Prairie Daily Herald-Tribune

Grade 10 Composite High School student Bronwyn Delacruz shows off her Geiger Counter, a handheld detector that measures ionizing radiation in certain food products.  Elizabeth McSheffrey/Daily Herald-Tribune<br /><br />
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Grade 10 Composite High School student Bronwyn Delacruz shows off her Geiger Counter, a handheld detector that measures ionizing radiation in certain food products. Elizabeth McSheffrey/Daily Herald-Tribune

When Bronwyn Delacruz started testing seaweed in her living room last August, she made an incredible discovery: Something unexpected may be lurking in Canadian waters.

The Composite High School Grade 10 student has found disconcerting radiation levels in seaweed products from local grocery stores and is concerned for the health of families who may be consuming them.

Her research on the subject recently earned gold at the regional Canada-Wide Science Fair in Peace River, garnering her a spot at the national competition in Ontario this May.

“I think any dose of radiation can be harmful,” she explained. “Any dose can cause negative health effects, no matter how small it may be.”

Delacruz tested more than 300 individual seaweed samples, with 15 brands exported from New Brunswick, British Columbia, California, Washington, China and Japan.

Each was purchased in an Alberta grocery store, and evaluated for radiation levels using a Geiger counter.

“I just wanted to see if it was contaminated and I did find radioactive contamination in it,” she said. “I’m kind of concerned that this is landing in our grocery stores and that if you aren’t measuring it, you could just be eating this and bringing home to your family.”

Radioactivity is measured in becquerels (Bq), and 0.5 Bq per square centimetre is widely considered an actionable level of contamination.

Delacruz said one Bq is equivalent to 1,450 counts over a 10-minute period, and many of her samples tested well over this amount.

“Kelp was higher than what washttp://www.dailyheraldtribune.com/ considered dangerous,” she explained. “Some of them came up to 1,700, 1,800 (counts).”

The student’s research delves further than surface measurements however, and speculates a cause for the unusual counts.

In March 2011, Japan was devastated by a massive earthquake and tsunami that led to the meltdown of two Fukushima nuclear power plants.

Delacruz believes the current has carried dangerous radiation from Japan’s east coast to Canada’s portion of the Pacific Ocean.

From April 2011 to October 2012, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) tested more than 250 samples of imported foods from Japan, including fish and seafood, processed product, grain, fruit and vegetables.

None of the samples posed a health risk to consumers, it said, based on a Health Canada action level of 1,000 Bq/kg.

 

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Japan Nuclear Crisis: Information for Canadians Regarding Imported and Domestic Food

Following the March 11 earthquake in Japan, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) took several measures to assess and protect the Canadian food supply from potential effects of Japan’s nuclear crisis. In coordination with the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) and other government and international partners, the CFIA implemented enhanced import controls, which did not allow food and animal feed products from affected areas in Japan to enter Canada without acceptable documentation or test results verifying their safety.

The CFIA also launched a sampling and testing strategy to monitor radiation levels of imported food from Japan, domestic milk and domestic fish off the coast of British Columbia. More than 200 food samples were tested and all were found to be below Health Canada’s actionable levels for radioactivity. As such, enhanced import controls have been lifted and no additional testing is planned.

Japan

British Columbia

Nevertheless, the CFIA continues to monitor events in Japan and assess any potential impacts on Canada’s food supply. Canadian officials continue to collect and assess intelligence from Japanese officials, Canada’s mission abroad and international authorities. Domestically, atmospheric monitoring continues and Health Canada continues to regularly monitor for radionuclides in food sold in Canada through its Total Diet Study. This would include imports from Japan. As well, Japanese controls on the sale of contaminated product remain intact.

Additional Information

Date modified:
2014-02-25

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