Is the industrially produced food we eat making us sick because of a weed killer called Roundup and the gluten that comes from the GMO wheat designed to be resistant to it? Gluten sensitivity has become an epidemic of late and oftentimes gluten arthritis, or joint pain is the first sign of a problem with gluten. A recent article in a toxicology journal provides a possible explanation for why many of us may be developing gluten arthritis. This article was written by an MIT scientist previously featured on this blog for her take down of the multi-billion dollar Statin drug machine. There’s nothing like the powerful mind of an academic genius without industry ties to rock the industrial boat.
Celiac disease has an interesting history. It likely first developed after the last ice age in the fertile crescent of the Middle East with cultivation of grains. The major breakthrough for the modern understanding of CD was the observation that bread shortages during World War Ⅱ resulted in a dramatic decrease in death rate from celiac disease. The disease is defined by an attack mounted by the body on the small intestine and this problem is triggered by a protein component of wheat-gluten. Gluten intolerance is the next step down from full blown celiac disease and is thought to have many causes, but many people who have this sensitivity may also have a lack of the friendly gut bacteria that help to break down the wheat protein. Believe it or not, there are loads of friendly bacteria in our intestines that help us digest food. These good bacteria also act as part of the immune system and the food they eat helps us maintain our weight. So what does an industrial weed killer have to do with all of this?
I remember watching the movie Food, Inc. and being astounded that farmers routinely used Roundup on their crops. If you’ve bought this weed killer at the hardware store, it’s potent and nasty stuff-killing anything it touches in minutes to hours. In order to use this herbicide without killing the crops, Monsanto has developed GMO seeds for Soy and Corn that can withstand Roundup. When I first heard this, seeing how horrendous Roundup was from my use in the yard, I thought to myself, “this can’t be a good idea”. After all, just looking at the poor Dandelions I’ve sprayed with Roundup is an education in the scary potency of glycophosphate. Within minutes, these beautiful little weeds are turned into shriveled up and crooked mutations.
The active ingredient in Roundup is Glycophosphate. This chemical was just highlighted in a major article in a toxicology journal as there are curious associations between the use of Roundup and Celiac disease. It turns out that glycophosphate doesn’t only kill plants, it also kills the good gut bacteria that you depend on to maintain your immune system, weight, and help digest your food. The graph above is from the original article and it plots the new diagnoses of Celiac disease and the use of Roundup. The correlation between the two lines on the graph is a bit eerie.
One of the authors is Stephanie Seneff, an MIT scientist who is actually a specialist is the use of computers to understand complex or chaotic data (for example the fields of Natural Language Processing or Genetics). She wrote an excellent treatise on why Statin cholesterol drugs will likely be found to be the major cause of significant disease and serious side effects. This is something you would rarely hear out of many heavily Pharma funded academic medical doctors, as any physician who specialized in cardiac or cholesterol research who opposed that money machine wouldn’t last long. The same holds true for scientists involved in agriculture health issues, opposing the giant Monsanto corporation is ill advised. That’s why I’m becoming a big Dr. Seneff fan, she has the brains and mental brawn to plow into these very complex biologic subjects, but since she’s from a computer science background, she has none of the industry ties that could “tie” her hands and mind.
The upshot? Roundup is nasty stuff. When our government made the decision it was safe in humans, they didn’t consider that it might not be safe for the friendly bacteria on which we depend. In conclusion, stay away from GMO crops and eat organic!