The top 12 fresh produce items with the most chemical pesticides

Saturday, August 25, 2012 by: John McKiernan

(NaturalNews) With all of the different pesticides used to grow fruits and vegetables today you may wonder if it’s safe to eat any non-organic produce at all. The answer is yes, you should still be eating five servings of fruits and vegetables every day, whether they are all organic or not. Of course organic produce is better, but for many people the price difference is too great so they stick to regular produce, which is understandable.

A diet rich in fruits and vegetables outweighs the negative consequences of pesticide exposure. With that being said, there are some fruits and vegetables that are low in toxic pesticides and others that are much higher. If you can only afford to buy some organic produce this guide will help you shop wisely, so that you can avoid as much toxic residue as possible while still conserving your money.

The dirty dozen

The EWG (environmental working group) cleverly calls the 12 fruits and vegetables listed below the “dirty dozen” due to their high levels of pesticides, when compared to other produce. If possible, purchase the following organic produce.

1. Apples
2. Celery
3. Strawberries
4. Peaches
5. Spinach
6. Nectarines
7. Grapes
8. Sweet bell peppers
9. Potatoes
10. Blueberries
11. Lettuce
12. Kale/collard greens

The clean 15

This next group of 15 produce are known by the EWG as the “clean 15”. They are the lowest in toxic pesticides, so if you’re going to buy non-organic produce, these would be the ones to buy.

1. Onions
2. Sweet corn
3. Pineapples
4. Avocado
5. Asparagus
6. Sweet peas
7. Mangoes
8. Eggplant
9. Cantaloupe
10. Kiwi
11. Cabbage
12. Watermelon
13. Sweet potatoes
14. Grapefruit
15. Mushrooms

Consuming foods from the clean 15 will lower your pesticide exposure a whopping 92% when compared with the dirty dozen. By choosing five fruits and vegetables a day from the clean 15 list you’ll consume fewer than two pesticides per day, whereas consuming five fruits and vegetables a day from the dirty dozen will cause you to ingest as many as 14 different pesticides every day.

What is this information based on?

This information is based on an analysis of 51,000 tests for pesticides conducted from 2001-2009 by the USDA and the FDA on 53 popular fruits and vegetables. The produce in the tests were rinsed and peeled so that they would simulate the conditions in which they are normally consumed.

How bad are pesticides?

We don’t have enough data on long-term pesticide exposure on humans, but it is likely that Americans are polluted with far more pesticides than current studies report. Not surprisingly, pesticide manufacturers and the companies that use the pesticides claim there is no link between pesticide exposure and health risks. It’s this type of outlandish claim that should make Americans question exactly how dangerous pesticides are and the possible long-term health effects of them. Pesticides are designed to kill living organisms. With that in mind we should all make an effort to purchase, at least the more toxic produce, in the organic section.

Sources for this article include:

http://www.ewg.org/foodnews/list/
http://eartheasy.com/eat_pesticides_produce.htm
http://abcnews.go.com

About the author:
John Mckiernan is a health and fitness writer. He is the owner of Supplement Helper where he writes supplement reviews and more. He also manages CNA Info, a small blog aimed at answering questions for anyone interested in CNA work.

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How to avoid deceptively ‘healthy’ junk foods while shopping

Saturday, August 25, 2012 by: Jonathan Benson, staff writer
 
(NaturalNews) An increasing number of “junk” food items are now being repacked and rebranded as health food items, with claims that they contain things like added vitamins and minerals, or no trans-fats. But oftentimes such items are still just junk foods with deceptive labels, and consumers need to be aware of this when browsing the grocery store aisles in search of foods that are truly healthy for them and their families.Just because a box of sugar-filled, artificial color-laden cereal, for instance, says it is an “excellent source of fiber” or “made from 100 percent whole grains” does not necessarily mean that the product is healthy. Even if the cereal has been enriched with “eight vitamins and mineral,” it more than likely was so highly processed in the first place that the manufacturer had to go back and add in synthetic nutrients just to make the product edible.

Most added vitamins and minerals are synthetic, do not absorb well in the body

Cereals, crackers, chips, cookies, juices, fruit snacks, and many other junk foods marketed primarily towards children often bear labeling that claims they are rich in certain vitamins, or that they contribute to a healthy and balanced diet. But what many parents do not realize is that the added nutrients in such products are typically synthetic, which means they are not easily absorbed by the body.

Refined flour-based products are almost always fortified with synthetic vitamins and minerals, for example, because these nutrients have been fully stripped out during processing. But the type of vitamins and minerals that are added back in have been concocted in a lab rather than in nature, and tend to provide little or no benefits when consumed.

Many so-called healthy brands are also guilty of this deception, as they, too, fortify their flour-based snack products with vitamins and minerals that would have been naturally present had heavy processing not been a part of the production process. This is typically the case with crackers and breakfast cereals, most of which undergo intense processing and cooking protocols.

A good way to tell whether or not a food product has been synthetically fortified with vitamins and minerals is to look for them spelled out individually in the ingredients list. If you see these additives listed out, there is a pretty good chance that the product has been highly processed and is nutritionally inadequate, requiring the addition of at least some nutrients back into the product.

Autolyzed yeast extract, GMOs, and soy

Another additive to watch out for is autolyzed yeast extract, which is basically just another name for the brain damaging chemical monosodium glutamate, or MSG. Flavored snack chips, crackers, meats, food bars, and many other items that appear healthy often contain it, despite the fact that, just like MSG, autolyzed yeast extract can cause headaches, reproductive problems, endocrine disruption, nervous system disorders, and other harm. (http://www.naturalnews.com/020426.html)

The same goes for hidden ingredients of genetically-modified (GM) origin such as soybean and canola oils. Many of the so-called healthy products sold at health food grocers like Whole Foods Market , for instance, contain canola oil, a highly toxic oil that studies are now showing actually promotes heart disease and disease-causing inflammation in the body.

Soy ingredients, which are often found in many “health” foods as well, are also problematic. Besides being of GM origin unless otherwise specified, soy ingredients can seriously alter hormone levels in the body, and many soy derivatives are created using a highly toxic solvent chemical known as hexane. (http://www.naturalnews.com/026303_soy_protein_hexane.html)

Medical patients who follow strict GMO-free diets experience dramatic health recovery

(NaturalNews) In their quest to achieve better health, many patients with chronic illness are finding that genetically-modified organisms (GMOs) are one of the primary culprits responsible for exasperating and even causing their persistent conditions. And patients who see doctors that understand nutrition are also discovering that eliminating GMOs from their diets is effectively reversing and even curing these illnesses, without the need for pharmaceutical drugs.

In a thorough analysis recently published in Vitality Magazine, Jeffrey Smith, Executive Director of the Institute for Responsible Technology (IRT), explains how doctors who prescribe their ill patients GMO-free diets are witnessing dramatic recoveries in their patients, many in as little as just a few days of eating only clean, natural foods. Patients who were told they would have to take pills every day for the rest of their lives are now experiencing full recovery simply by avoiding GMOs.

“I tell my patients to avoid genetically-modified foods because in my experience, with those foods there is more allergies and asthma,” says Dr. Emily Lindner, an internist with 27 years of medical experience and practice in internal medicine. Dr. Lindner has seen dramatic improvements in many of her patients with chronic illness who adhere to strict, GMO-free diets.

“When I change people from a GMO diet to a GMO-free diet, I see results instantaneously in people who have foggy thinking and people who have gut symptoms like bloating, gas, irritation. In terms of allergies, it might take two to five days (to see relief). In terms of depression, it starts to lift almost instantaneously. It takes from a day, to certainly within two weeks.”

Smith outlines several documented cases in which patients with bowel conditions, cramps, cold hands and feet, allergies, congestion, migraine headaches, asthma, and various other conditions have essentially been healed as a result of going GMO-free. This is the same diet the American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM) recommended back in 2009 when it called for an indefinite moratorium on GMOs. (http://www.naturalnews.com/028245_GM_food_side_effects.html)

You can read Smith’s entire report here: http://vitalitymagazine.com

The connection between GMOs, inflammation, and autism

Interestingly enough, science continues to show that GMOs trigger an inflammatory response throughout the body, which is the foundation upon which chronic illness arises. Dr. Martha Grout from the Arizona Center for Advanced Medicine in Scottsdale is one of many progressive doctors who recognizes that the body essentially rejects GMOs and their foreign DNA as a poison.

Animal studies in which GMOs have been proven to elicit clear behavioral, neurological, and psychological changes can also be transposed to humans. After giving a talk back in 2011 about the harm caused by GMOs, for instance, Dr. Don Huber, Ph.D., a professor emeritus at Purdue University in Indiana, was approached by a doctor who explained that he had been observing the exact same detrimental side effects in his autistic patients. (http://www.responsibletechnology.org/autism)

Numerous animal studies verify that GMOs induce erratic behavior, including a tendency towards hyperactivity. At the same time, GMOs also tear up the digestive tract and lead to chronic bowel symptoms. Both of these conditions are common amongst children that have been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders, and many doctors are convinced that GMOs are a major cause of autism symptoms.

Lacing the food supply with GMOs and not labeling them as such is not only causing widespread illness, but it is also illegally depriving individuals of their lawful right to informed consent. GMOs are not the same as natural food, and have repeatedly been shown to cause serious and long-term health problems — and individuals have a right to know whether or not the foods they buy contain GMOs.

Be sure to check out IRT’s Non-GMO Shopping Guide for tips on how to avoid buying and inadvertently consuming GMOs: http://www.nongmoshoppingguide.com/

Also, consider joining the Label It Yourself initiative to proactively raise awareness about the presence of GMOs throughout the food supply: http://labelityourself.org/

Sources for this article include:

http://vitalitymagazine.com

http://www.responsibletechnology.org/10-Reasons-to-Avoid-GMOs

Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/036861_GMO-free_diet_disease_recovery_medical_patients.html#ixzz24HwRZRZy

Cooking oils 101 – Choosing the best oils for your health

(NaturalNews) Contrary to popular belief, not all fat is bad for your health. Many fats, in fact, actually promote healthy weight maintenance and a well-functioning cardiovascular and nervous system, among many other benefits. But with so much misinformation out there about the nature of fats and oils, it can be difficult for many people to make sense of the issue, to the detriment of their own health.

To help simplify the matter, here are some helpful tips for choosing the best edible oils for your health:

Coconut oil. Perhaps the most misunderstood — and also one of the healthiest — oils you can consume, coconut oil is an amazingly-versatile, nutrient-dense superfood that is the richest known source of medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs), which aid in the proper digestion and assimilation of fats, as well as boost energy levels. Coconut oil is also rich in healthy saturated fats and antioxidants, and has been found to promote brain health, boost immunity, and strengthen thyroid function.

Since it has a high smoke point and is incredibly shelf stable, coconut oil is great for both cooking and eating raw. Many people regularly eat unrefined, extra virgin coconut oil by the spoonful, as it is a powerful antifungal, antibacterial, and antiviral food that is rich in disease-fighting lauric acid. Coconut is also a powerful energy booster, as it quickly penetrates cells and provides rapid nourishment. (http://www.naturalnews.com/coconut_oil.html)

Red palm oil. This one is a bit more controversial, as palm plantations are said to be slowly overtaking the natural habitats of orangutans and other animals. But when cultivated responsibly, red palm oil is an excellent, shelf-stable oil that is rich in tocotrienols (vitamin E) and carotenes (vitamin A). Similar to coconut oil, red palm oil has a high smoke point, does not require hydrogenation to remain stable, and is completely free of trans fatty acids, which makes it an excellent option for cooking and baking.

Red palm oil is pretty much the only oil that has a perfect balance of both tocopherols and tocotrienols, which together encompass the gamut of vitamin E’s many unique forms. Red palm oil also contains nearly 13 times more vitamin A-producing carotenes than carrots, which make it one of the richest plant sources of this important nutrient. (http://www.tropicaltraditions.com/red_palm_oil.htm)

Avocado oil. A relatively underrated fat, avocado oil is gaining popularity as a powerful, free radical-fighting “super-oil” that protects cellular mitochondria from destruction. Rich in phytonutrients, avocado oil does not easily oxidize, which makes it preferable to sunflower, safflower, canola, soybean, corn, and peanut oils, which are often recommended in many mainstream health circles as being healthy. (http://www.naturalnews.com)

The antioxidants found in avocado oil have a unique ability to effectively enter cell mitochondria and shield cells against disease-causing oxidation. Many fruits and vegetables that are rich in antioxidants lack this ability, at least to the same degree. Avocado oil is also a powerful weapon against heart disease and aging. (http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk)

Macadamia nut oil. The average American consumes far more omega-6 fatty acids than omega-3 fatty acids, which is a major contributor to chronic inflammation and disease. But macadamia nut oil is uniquely low in omega-6s compared to other nut oils, while also being relatively high in omega-3s. Macadamia nut oil is said to contain an ideal 1:1 ratio of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids, which makes it one of the healthiest nut oils you can consume.

Macadamia nut oil is also rich in oleic acid, an omega-9 fatty acid that contains its own unique cancer-fighting and heart-protecting properties. With a rich, sweet, buttery flavor, as well as a high smoke point, macadamia nut oil is both a delicious salad topper, and a tasty frying and sauteing oil. (http://primaltoad.com/macadamias/)

Olive oil. Nearly everybody knows about the health benefits of olive oil, as it is one of the most highly acclaimed, heart-healthy oils being talked about today. And when it is truly fresh and authentic, extra virgin olive oil really is everything the health industry claims and more, especially when consumed alongside other healthy oils like coconut and avocado.

A staple of the so-called Mediterranean diet, olive oil is rich in monounsaturated fats and high-density lipoproteins (HDL), which help reduce levels of cholesterol in the blood. Its various vitamins, nutrients, and antioxidants effectively guard against heart disease; promote healthy digestion; ease the symptoms of ulcers and gastritis; and prevent gallstone formation, among other benefits. (http://www.globalhealingcenter.com)

Sesame oil. Popular in Asian cooking, sesame oil has a pungent flavor that makes it a favorite in many foods. And the great news is that it is also beneficial to health, having been shown to lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of heart disease. Sesame oil is also rich in iron, calcium, and magnesium, the latter of which is known for its incredible calming effect.

Also rich in polyunsaturated fats, sesame oil helps contribute to proper fat absorption; cognitive acuity; healthy skin; a lowered risk of heart disease; and strong teeth and bones. Sesame oil also helps fight diabetes, reduce high blood pressure, prevent gingivitis and dental plaque, protect against kidney damage, and fight depression. (http://www.greenmedinfo.com)

Other beneficial oils worth checking out include almond oil, pumpkin seed oil, flax seed oil, grape seed oil, walnut oil, hemp oil, and ghee, also known as clarified butter. On the other hand, corn, soy, cottonseed, canola, sunflower, safflower and various other “vegetable” oils are all damaging to health and should be avoided.

Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/036858_cooking_oils_health_red_palm_oil.html#ixzz24Hr3316Q

Use these tips to detox after exposure to aerial or ground sprayed pesticides

Wednesday, August 22, 2012 by: Tony Isaacs

 
(NaturalNews) If you live in an area which is being blanketed with aerial or ground spraying of pesticides for mosquitoes, it is virtually impossible to completely avoid exposure. However, there is plenty you can do to help get the pesticides out of your body and offset their effects.

Tips for eliminating pesticides from the body

Most toxins are eliminated in bile via the liver. In addition to commercial cleansing products, a wide variety of foods, supplements and healthy practices can help flush and eliminate pesticides and other toxins from the liver, gall bladder, colon, kidneys and blood:

* Glutathione is the body’s natural detoxifier which enables the liver to remove toxins from the body. N-Acetyl Cysteine helps the body produce glutathione. Likewise, coffee enemas increase glutathione production and also help keep the bile ducts open.

* One “must have” item is milk thistle, which is wonderful for overall liver health as well as a great detoxifier. For more liver health recommendations, see:

http://www.naturalnews.com/031243_liver_health.html

* Essiac Tea is a great overall cleanser which is noted for its cancer-fighting abilities. One of the pesticides commonly employed for ground spraying, permethrin, is considered by the EPA as “likely to be carcinogenic to humans” if consumed.

* About one quarter of the toxins in your body are eliminated through the skin. Saunas and hot baths help sweat toxins out. To see how to use a healing and detoxing bath at home:

http://www.naturalnews.com/033373_mineral_baths_health.html

* Clay baths are extremely effective for pulling all kinds of toxins out of the body. The best clay for detoxification is calcium montmorillonite.

* Pantethine is an often overlooked supplement which can be essential opening up roadblocks pesticides create which prevent the body from being able to absorb, use or deploy sufficient amounts of natural detox items.

* Activated Charcoal is safe to consume and very potent. Take 20-30 grams a day in divided doses mixed with water for one to two weeks.

* Citrus pectin is one of the most powerful detoxifying substances to be found and, though it eliminates toxic metals, it doesn’t deplete your body of zinc, calcium or magnesium.

* Be sure to eat plenty of alkaline foods such as fruits and vegetables. Alkaline bodies are better able to flush toxins.

* Fiber helps your liver flush out toxins by transporting them out of your digestive system. Eat two to three servings of fiber-rich foods daily. Dietary sources of fiber include whole grain breads and cereals, flax seed, barley, beans and fresh or dried prunes.

* Toxins tend to collect in the fat around tissues like your liver. Grapefruit contains a flavonoid called naringenin that reprograms your liver to melt excess fat, instead of storing it.

* Garlic boosts the ability of your white blood cells to fight the effects of toxins.

* Lemons and asparagus have proven abilities to reduce pesticide levels.

* Eggs help remove toxins and also increase energy levels.

* Vitamin C is essential for our ability to neutralize the effects of toxins.

* Magnesium is essential for over 300 body processes.

* Selenium is important for the production of an enzyme that helps to detoxify your body.

* Dandelion root stimulates bile production and acts as a diuretic for excess water.

* Used by Native Americans for centuries, sarsaparilla is a great tasting tea and an effective blood detoxifier.

* Burdock Root increases urine and perspiration.

* 10-12 glasses of clean water daily helps flush toxins from your body.

* Skin brushing reduces the fatigue caused by pesticide exposure. It also helps the lymph drainage system flush toxins from your system.

* Exercise 30 minutes to one hour daily to bring more oxygen-rich blood to your kidneys and liver, allowing them to eliminate toxins more effectively.

Sources included:

http://www.firehow.com
http://citybugs.tamu.edu/2012/08/14/faqs-about-aerial-spraying/
http://www.proliberty.com/observer/20080201.htm
http://www.alsearsmd.com/six-steps-to-a-pure-and-clean-body/
http://kojoreport.com

Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/036902_aerial_spraying_chemical_exposure_detox.html#ixzz24HbEqqle

5 Foods That Boost Your Memory

 

 

Amy Jamieson-Petonic, RD, of Cleveland Clinic shares five foods that harbor nutrients proven to better your brain health.

Worried about losing your memory? Help may be as close as your kitchen. Here are some foods you can add to your daily diet that have been shown to improve cognition:

Blueberries: Berries contain anthocyanin, an antioxidant pigment that increases your ability to remember things. One three-month research study showed improved learning recall in older adults who drank blueberry juice to improved learning recall.

Almonds: Almonds are an excellent brain food because they contain a protein component that boosts production of a nerve chemical shown to enhance memory.

Dark chocolate: Varieties of dark chocolate that are comprised of at least 70-percent cocoa contain flavanols that increase blood flow to the brain.

Extra-virgin olive oil: This type of olive oil contains a chemical called hydroxytyrosol that tends to increase messages to the brain and improves your memory.

Green tea: You’ve probably heard about its antioxidant power, but green tea has also been shown to help reboot your memory

Obesity Does Not Protect Diabetics

Gabe Mirkin, M.D.
        This week, a study showed that people who have normal
weight at the time of their diagnosis of diabetes are twice as
likely to die over the next 10 to 30 years as those who are
overweight at the time of diagnosis (Journal of the American
Medical Association. August 8, 2012).  THIS DOES NOT MEAN THAT
OBESITY PROTECTS DIABETICS FROM DEATH.  It means that if you are
thin when you develop diabetes, you have a type of diabetes that
is more likely to kill you.
THE MOST COMMON CAUSE OF DIABETES:  Type II diabetes is most
commonly caused by inability of your cells to respond to insulin. 
When blood sugar levels rise too high, your pancreas releases
large amounts of insulin.  Insulin then attaches on insulin
receptors, special hooks on the outer membranes of cells.  Then it
drives sugar into cells. ANYTHING THAT PREVENTS INSULIN FROM
ATTACHING TO ITS RECEPTORS CAN CAUSE DIABETES.  If insulin cannot
attach to its receptors, it cannot drive sugar into cells. This
causes blood sugar levels to rise too high, and sugar attaches to
the outer membranes of cells.  Sugar attached to cell membranes is
eventually converted to sorbitol which destroys the cells.  This
cell destruction is what causes all of the known side effects of
diabetes.  FULL FAT CELLS BLOCK INSULIN RECEPTORS.  Fat inside
cells prevents insulin from attaching to its receptors, so having
extra fat in your body causes diabetes.
STORING FAT PRIMARILY IN YOUR BELLY IS A SIGN OF DIABETES. 
Insulin causes fat to be stored in the belly, so almost all people
with big bellies and small buttocks have high insulin levels
because their cells cannot respond to insulin, and the pancreas
responds by producing excessive amounts of insulin.  Most people
who store a lot of fat in their bellies and have small buttocks
already have diabetes or are pre-diabetic.
LACK OF MUSCLES CAN CAUSE DIABETES:  Muscles help to prevent
blood sugar levels from rising too high and damaging the cells in
your body.  Resting muscles are inactive and draw no sugar from
the bloodstream.  On the other hand, contracting muscles actively
remove sugar from the bloodstream and don’t even need insulin to
do this.
WHY ARE PEOPLE WHO ARE FAT WHEN THEY ARE DIAGNOSED EASY TO
CURE?  Virtually all people who are fat when they develop diabetes
can cure their diabetes by losing weight.   When they empty their
muscle, liver and fat cells of fat, these cells can once again
respond to insulin.  Blood sugar levels drop and the person is no
longer diabetic.
WHY ARE PEOPLE WHO ARE NOT FAT WHEN THEY ARE DIAGNOSED WITH
DIABETES MORE DIFFICULT TO CURE?  More than 90 percent of
diabetics are overweight. Thin people who develop diabetes do not
have full fat cells.  They are diabetic because:
* Their pancreas does not make enough insulin.  We have drugs to
make the pancreas put out more insulin, but we do not have drugs
to permanently make the pancreas produce normal amounts of
insulin.
* Their muscles are so small that they do not remove sugar from
the bloodstream adequately.  Lifting weights would help, but
growing large muscles is beyond the motivation of most people with
small muscles. It takes a lot of consistent painful resistance
exercise to grow larger muscles.
* They may have other hormone abnormalities that are far more
difficult to treat.
WHAT SHOULD YOU DO IF YOU ARE DIAGNOSED WITH DIABETES,
STORE FAT PRIMARILY IN YOUR BELLY, HAVE VERY SMALL BUTTOCKS,
HAVE A FASTING BLOOD SUGAR LEVEL ABOVE 100, OR HAVE AN HBA1C
ABOVE 5.7?   
* Immediately try to lose fat by eating less and exercising more 
* Start a supervised exercise program and try to exercise every
day 
* Start a supervised weight lifting program to grow larger muscles
* Avoid all sugared drinks except when you exercise
* Avoid all sugar-added foods
* Avoid red meat (saturated fat from animals blocks insulin
receptors)
* Eat large amounts of vegetables and fruits
* Get your blood levels of hydroxy-vitamin D above 75 nmol/L