Chemical-Soaked Industrial Food: Tough Questions, Real Answers

Why are chemicals so pervasive in industrial foods?

The increased usage of chemicals in food production means more money for agribusinesses. With each new protein or hormone, the agribusiness is able to patent and gain exclusive sales rights. There is more money to be made off of engineered foods than foods that grow and reproduce naturally. 

Don't these chemicals protect the crop from pests and create a more stable food system?

Though this is certainly a selling point from agribusinesses, the usage of pesticides, herbicides, and genetically engineered crops has not created a more stable food system. The long-term effects of these chemicals on humans have not been adequately studied. Additionally, the increasing crop homogenization and decrease in species diversification leaves us vulnerable to a pest, virus or bacteria that could wipe out an entire crop. Though the chemicals do prevent pests in the short-term, the long-term public health effects are much more detrimental.

How does chemical exposure in food consumption effect our children's bodies?

Since 70% of our immune system is located in our digestive tracts, the foods we eat along with the chemicals they contain significantly impact our health. As these foods travel down the intestines, they can corrode the “pipes” much in the same way that chemical toxins corrode plumbing. The damage inflicted can leave a child vulnerable to a long list of autoimmune disorders such as food allergies, asthma, and ADD/ADHD, among many others.

What can I do to help protect my family? 5 Steps Towards A More Secure Diet:

  1. Educate yourself and others about industrial food.
  2. Eat a healthy, unprocessed diet.
  3. Buy local, organic fruits and vegetables.
  4. Avoid meat and dairy products that have been treated with hormones or antibiotics.
  5. Get a food allergy test for family members that display signs and symptoms of an allergic reaction.

Detecting Food Allergies: What Every Parent Needs to Know

12 Signs and Symptoms of a Food Allergy

  1. hives
  2. itching
  3. rash (eczema)
  4. behavioral/temper changes
  5. swelling of the face, lips, tongue and/or eyes
  6. diarrhea
  7. vomiting
  8. cramps
  9. itching and tightness of throat
  10. difficulty breathing (asthma)
  11. wheezing
  12. in extreme cases, anaphylactic shock.

What is a food allergy?

A food allergy is an immune reaction to a protein usually found in food that the body perceives as a foreign invader.

Can Children Outgrow Food Allergies?

Some children may outgrow their food allergy, though evidence increasingly suggests that autoimmune disorders such as asthma, Crohn's disease, and ulcerative colitis, among others, may result.

What Can I do to Keep My Family Safe?

  1. Cut “frankenfoods”

Manufactured by agribusinesses with suspect synthetic proteins, preservatives and dyes, these processed foods are built with foreign additives that our bodies often reject, resulting in allergic reactions and many other health issues.

  1. Eat real food

Local, organic fruits, vegetables, meat and dairy products are usually the cleanest and safest nutrient sources. Support these alternatives by shopping at farmer's markets.

  1. Food Allergy Blood Test

Simple, reliable, and cost-effective, these food allergy tests can quickly detect up to 96 possible food allergens particular to any one person. If a loved one is displaying the signs and symptoms of a potential food allergy, this is the quickest and easiest detection method.

Support Children: Discover the Truth Behind our Nation's Agribusinesses

Wealthy Nation, Sick Citizens

Though the United States is one of the wealthiest countries, our citizens are not exempt from chronic health issues. How can a country with such an impressive list of accomplishments still struggle to maintain it's health? Most alarming for parents are mounting public health epidemics among children, such as Type II diabetes, obesity, and asthma. Our nation is increasingly burdened by healthcare costs and children suffering from chronic illness. The security of our families and our nation depends on building our strengths, not managing our weaknesses. We must demand our health back.

Frankenfoods: What Agribusiness Isn't Telling Us

Robyn O'Brien, a new champion of food reform, learned how powerful and insidious the industrial food complex truly is when her youngest daughter suffered an acute reaction to a food allergen. Desperate to help her child in any way she could, she armed herself with as much information as possible in order to uncover what could be causing such devastating health changes in her infant daughter. O'Brien was horrified to learn that our food system provides subsidies for genetically modified (GM) crops, or foods that have synthetic proteins genetically hardwired into their DNA. No clinical human trials have ever been published. Our children are ther test subjects, and our very own home is the laboratory.

Milk: It Doesn't Do Your Body Good

According to CNN and the Wall Street Journal, milk is the most common of all food allergens. This seems unsurprising when examined alongside the chemical make-over the dairy industry received 15 years ago. In 1994, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved a new synthetic growth hormone (alternately called recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH) or recombinant bovine somatropine (rBST)) to help cows produce more milk. Unfortunately, it also made the cows sick. Besides growing at a monstrous rate and falling under the weight of their own udders, dairy cows also developed ovarian cysts, skin disorders, and udder infections. To get a few more years out of a chronically ill cow's life, industrial dairy farmers feed the cows a steady diet of antibiotics, too.

Monsanto Bullies the FDA, dairies in Maine, and Fox News Investigative Reporters

With all these horrendous side effects, how did the FDA ever allow it to pass inspection? Apparently the effects of rBGH were never properly studied. The FDA relied solely on one study administered by Monsanto, the very company that produced the growth hormone in the first place. The study was never published. Instead of pushing for more analysis, the FDA accepted the results, stating that they showed no significant problems.

Cancer and dairy allergies are increasingly linked to rBGH, and the consumer public now demands answers. Monsanto, however, did and does not want to relinquish their grip on the dairy industry. Investigative journalists from a Fox News station in Tampa, Florida were fired for producing an unflattering story about the hormones after ensuing pressure from Monsanto.

Oakhurt Dairy, one of the largest dairy operations in Maine, was forced to change it's labels from “rGBH-free” to adding the statement “FDA States: No significant difference in milk from cows treated with artificial growth hormone.” It has even been proven that there is a so-called revolving door between Monsanto and the FDA. Many former Monsanto employees now work for the FDA, and vice versa. Who is working for the American public?

“How Many Cereal Bowls Have I Filled With This Milk?!”

Governments around the world no longer except meat or dairy products from the United States. They say these new proteins and hormones have yet to be proven safe. Our government, on the other hand, says they have yet to be proven dangerous. Robyn O'Brien, and many others, disagree with them.

Take A Stand for Your Family

Agriculture is greatly influenced by enormous corporations bent on squeezing every last cent out of the consuming public, even if it means putting families at risk. It is up to us to educate each other and take a stand against large corporations. The strength of our nation's children depends on it.

Dramatic Rise in Hospitalizations: Children with Food Allergies Dramatic Rise in Hospitalizations: Children with Food Allergies Dramatic Rise in Hospitalizations: Children with Food Allergies

A 265% Increase in the Past 10 Years

Since 1998, there has been a 265% increase in hospitalizations related to food allergies among children under 18, according to a 2008 CDC report. In ten short years, the number of children in grave danger due to consumption of a food allergen has nearly tripled. What is causing this unprecedented increase, and what is being done to prevent the unimaginable from happening to our nations' children?

A “Typical” Breakfast Sends a Child to the Emergency Room

Unfortunately, not much can be done. Robyn O'Brien, a former food analyst and mother of four, found this out the hard way. One morning over breakfast, her life changed forever. Her youngest daughter suffered an acute allergic reaction to her standard breakfast of Eggo waffles and was rushed to the hospital. Fortunately, O'Brien's daughter survived, but the mother's confidence in the nation's food system did not.

Over 3 Million Child Sufferers

To O'Brien's astonishment, she learned that an unbelievable 3 million children now suffer from food allergies. Unfortunately, these trends are not merely related to a general population increase. It is the very food we feed our families that is turning their immune systems against them.

3 Shocking Discoveries

In her search for answers, O'Brien made three surprising discoveries:

  1. Many food allergies are caused by synthetic proteins manufactured and inserted into our crops – proteins which were never tested for possible side effects.
  2. An allergic reaction to food is not only related to possible genetic predisposition, but an industry that willingly experiments on it's unsuspecting consumers.
  3. Our government's response to the food industry's frankenfoods is “safe until proven dangerous.”

How Many Children Sacrificed?

How many more children will be sent to the hospital before we realize the food is not safe? As more and more money is spent on disease management instead of economic growth, our international competitiveness dwindles.

Defending Our Nation's Children

Though never a foodie herself, Robyn O'Brien has become what many call “Erin Brokovich” of the healthy food movement. She recognizes that this is an issue that bridges the gap between progressive and conservative. Democrats, Republicans and independents alike all have children that they love and for whom they want the best. As an economist, she reminds us that we must ensure the future of our nation is in strong, healthy hands. 

Mounting Evidence, Lessons Ignored: The Hidden Truth Behind The Cause of Schizophrenia

World War II & Schizophrenia: What the Front Line Taught Us about Food Allergies

Many lessons are learned in times of war. Pacifism comes to mind first, but following closely behind, I would imagine, is how to feed, clothe and shelter a military unit in a foreign land. But, as quickly noted by some sharp-witted scientists, not all food is created equal. F. Curtis Dohan, M.D., investigated admissions to mental hospitals during WWII in five countries with wheat shortages and found a simultaneous and dramatic decrease in the admissions for schizophrenia. When compared to data collected in the United States where wheat consumption increased, admissions for schizophrenia skyrocketed. An association between schizophrenia and wheat, gluten, and Celiac Disease was duly noted in the record books, but medical professionals today are still slow to acknowledge it.

The 1970s: Food Allergies Cause Schizophrenic Symptoms in Most Cases

In the 1970s, even more scientific research supported the correlation between food allergies and schizophrenia. In the study, Psychiatric Syndromes Produced by Allergies: Ecologic Mental Illness by H. L. Newbold, M.D., William H. Philpott, M.D. and Marshall Mandell, M.D. (1973), “the finding of 92.2 % of reactions...in the schizophrenic group reveal[ed] such reactions” to wheat, corn and milk “to hold the position of being the immediate cause of symptoms in most cases.” (p. 92, emphasis added). It was also found that once these foods were removed from the schizophrenic's diet, they rapidly recovered and were able to function normally. Why did this not revolutionize the treatment of schizophrenics?

Today: Gluten Consistently Implicated in Schizophrenia, While Doctors Feign Ignorance

It is agreed among many scientists and medical professionals who study the effects of food allergies on human health that the correlation between gluten and schizophrenia exists. Not only is schizophrenia linked to gluten intolerance, but also diabetes, thyroid disease, purpura, anemia, rheumatoid arthritis, migraine headaches, lung disease, epilepsy, cerebellar ataxia, and even autism, to name a few. Despite data which consistently proves these trends, many medical professionals are either ignorant or in denial of the connection between food allergies and physical, mental and emotional illnesses. In the words of Newbold, Philpott and Mandell, “One cannot help wondering how many patients are receiving psychotherapy, chemotherapy, electroconvulsive therapy, and even cingulotomy surgery for conditions which are basically allergic in nature.” (91) How much longer people will continue to suffer in silence while the majority of the medical community turns their head?