Archive for October, 2013

Diet Changes That Might Cut Breast Cancer Risk

While diet alone cannot completely prevent breast cancer, it can reduce the risk of breast cancer.  According U.S. News the following foods are recommended to reduce the risk of getting breast cancer.


A plant-based diet.  A recent study suggests that women who eat lots of fruit, veggies and legumes, and little red meat, salt and processed carbohydrates may lower their odds of developing estrogen-receptor negative breast cancer, which accounts for about a quarter of all breast cancers. And a study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology found that the likelihood of the cancer was 20 percent less when women followed such a diet.


Red, yellow and orange fruits and veggies. In December, researchers at Harvard Medical School said that women with higher levels of carotenoids, or nutrients found in fruits and veggies, have a lower risk of breast cancer, especially cancers that are more difficult to treat and have a poorer prognosis. Smart choices include carrots, sweet potatoes, spinach, kale, red peppers and winter squash. The study was published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.


Walnuts. Consuming walnuts slowed the development and growth of breast cancer tumors in mice, according to a study published in 2011 in Nutrition and Cancer. Study author Elaine Hardman, a professor at Marshall University’s Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine, looked at the effect of a diet containing the human equivalent of 2 ounces of walnuts a day (25 to 30 walnut halves). After 34 days, mice that ate walnuts had less than half the rate of breast cancer as a control group on the same diet minus the walnuts. The number and size of tumors also were significantly smaller for the walnut group. The study authors speculate that walnuts’ anti-inflammatory properties are the reason.


Cutting back on alcohol. Even a moderate amount of alcohol is “clearly linked” to an increased risk of breast cancer, according to the American Cancer Society. Compared with non-drinkers, women who have two to five drinks a day are at least 50 percent likelier to develop the disease. If you have to drink, stick to a glass of wine (5 ounces), a shot of liquor (1.5 ounces) or a bottle of beer (12 ounces) a day.


Cabbage and sauerkraut. Researchers at Michigan State University found that people who ate raw or lightly cooked cabbage and sauerkraut at least three times a week were 72 percent less likely to develop breast cancer than those who had it twice or less. High levels of glucosinolates – compounds found in cabbage – may be responsible.


Vitamin D. Multiple studies, including one published in March in Cancer Causes and Control, have linked higher vitamin D levels with a lower risk of breast cancer. In one study, women with high vitamin D intake were up to 50 percent less likely to develop the disease. In another, Canadian researchers found that women who spent time outdoors or got lots of vitamin D from their diet or a supplement were 25 to 45 percent less likely to develop breast cancer. “Vitamin D is a subject under intense research,” Collins says. “And it does appear to play a role.” Some of the best vitamin D sources include milk, cereal, cod, tuna, shrimp and salmon.


Peaches and plums. Researchers at Texas A&M University found that peaches and plums contain antioxidants that kill breast cancer cells while leaving normal cells unharmed. The positive effect is likely caused by chlorogenic and neocholorogenic acid, both found in particularly high levels in both fruits. Findings were published in the Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry in 2010.


Fiber. Getting more fiber could lower breast cancer risk, according to a study published in July in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Researchers found that for every 10 grams of added fiber daily – about half a cup to one cup of beans, depending on type – breast cancer risk decreased by 7 percent. The findings are based on 10 studies involving more than 710,000 people over 7 to 18 years. Other high-fiber foods include vegetables, whole grains and lentils.


Avoiding high-fat dairy foods. A study of nearly 2,000 breast cancer survivors found that those who averaged as little as one serving a day of high-fat dairy foods had a 49 percent higher risk of dying from breast cancer than those who ate little or no high-fat dairy. The research was published in March in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. High-fat dairy includes whole milk, cream and anything made with them, such as cheese and ice cream.




UK Government Threatens To Stop Funding Hospitals That Refuse To Force Vaccinate Staff

UK Government Threatens To Stop Funding Hospitals That Refuse To Force Vaccinate Staff

The UK government has set aside five hundred million pounds for the next two years to help struggling A&E departments in UK hospitals to deal with the added pressure during the winter months. The financial boost comes with one condition, if the staff partake in yearly flu jabs. Is this really fair? For hospital staff choosing to opt out of the flu vaccine, should the whole hospital, staff and its patients be punished? How could the UK government refuse this financial benefit if they already have the money available to help out? Potentially risking the health of more people. Regardless of whether you think vaccinations and beneficial or not, this decision seems to be very controversial, and possibly unethical.


To be exact, hospitals will need to convince seventy five percent of their staff to vaccinate during the 2014/2015 season. The Milton Keynes Hospital in the UK has just over forty percent of the over two thousand staff involved with direct patient care that were given the flu shot last season. Across the entire country, only forty five percent of front-line staff were vaccinated. Clearly, those who oppose the shot, including medical workers, are in the majority, and for good reason. What’s worse is that these vaccinations could possibly be GMO based vaccines, given the fact that the FDA recently approved the very first ones expected on the market in 2014.


A lot of information has surfaced over the past few years that has led people all over the world to refuse vaccinations. There is so much that it can be hard deciding where to begin. Not long ago, doctors from the University of British Colombia revealed that Government experts have known about the dangers associated with vaccinations for over 30 years (0)(4). These documents are elaborated on here.  There have also been hundreds of studies conducted that look into vaccine ingredients and their potential harmful effects on the human body. As far as the benefits of vaccines, they are usually pushed by corporate media who is even harder to trust.


We are bombarded with the same corporate media that owns all of the major vaccine manufactures and most medical research. It’s not always a bad idea to research something for yourself, instead of handing our information over constantly to an external source. Studies with regards to the potential harmful effects of vaccinations are worldwide, illustrating neurological adverse events following vaccination (5). There is evidence on both sides of vaccine safety, and while some vaccinations might be effective, that does not mean that all of them are. Nobody can really deny the dangers associated with many of them.


Flu shots in particular don’t have the best track record. A study published in the journal Vaccine found that flu vaccines can cause a measurable increase in inflammation in pregnant women (1), this in turn can lead to multiple health consequences. Another study published in the Journal of Pediatrics (2) found that 85 percent of newborn infants experienced abnormal elevations of CRP when given multiple vaccines and up to 70 percent in those given a single vaccine. CRP is a protein found in the blood, a rise in this protein is a response to inflammation. Overall, 16 percent of infants were reported to experience vaccine-associated cardiorespiratory events within 48 hours of immunization.


More people are choosing to opt out of their yearly flu vaccination due to new information surfacing that shows they can be harmful to your health. Instances like children in Europe developing narcolepsy after the H1N1 pandemrix vaccine adds to decisions as well. Periodic infectious challenges are natures way of strengthening our immune system. With such a rigid vaccine schedule, our immune system becomes reliant and weak instead of strong and developed.
In 2009, Canadians actually increased the rate of medically attended pandemic H1N1 infection. Vaccines may actually decrease the resistance to viral infection via their immunosuppressive actions(3).


There is nothing wrong with presenting information on the other side of the coin, you should never be fearful of anything. If you do decide to vaccinate, be in your own knowing that the decision was right for you, not simply the recommendation of another. If you decide not to vaccinate, be in your own knowing of this decision as well. Your consciousness also plays a key role when it comes to health and remaining aware of that is an important step also. There is just a tidbit of information of vaccinations in this article, but I hope I’ve inspired you to further your research if concerned or interested.


Original Article Published at:

Original Author: Arjun Walia

Online Breast Milk Sharing? Beware

Online Breast Milk Sharing? Beware

I’ve always been taught in my women’s health studies classes that breast is best.  It is the babies first line of immune defense until they are able to develop their own.  I never considered how babies being raised by someone other than their biological mother would receive breast milk.  A recent article published by Nadia Kounang on CNN Health opened my eyes to the advancement of buying breast milk.  


Donated breast milk is “liquid gold at our house,” says Stacy Richards, 37. The liquid gold is for Simeon, Richards’ adopted 11-month-old son. He was born with Down syndrome and suffers from chronic lung disease. Richards believes “breast is best” but couldn’t breastfeed, so she turned to the next best thing.


Initially, she sought milk on community milk sharing sites, like “Eats on Feets,” and “Human Milk 4 Human Babies,” but didn’t feel comfortable getting milk from strangers. “We didn’t know who those women were. They didn’t have a safety net,” said Richards. Instead, she relied on trusted friends.


Richards had every right to worry, according to a new study published Monday in the journal Pediatrics. The study found milk bought off of the Internet through social media sites was more than twice as likely to be contaminated with infection-causing bacteria and three times more likely to contain salmonella than milk from the Human Milk Banking Association of North America (HMBNA). While only 5% of the HMBNA milk tested positive for herpes viruses, 21% of milk from the Internet contained bacteria and viruses.


HMBNA consists of 16 self-regulated, nonprofit milk banks across North America and has pre-screened donors. The milk banks further pasteurize the milk to ensure its safety.  But HMBNA milk isn’t always available to everyone. Babies that are the neediest, like preemies and those born with special conditions, receive priority, say Kim Updegrove, HMBNA president, “In 2012, our milk banks dispensed 2.5 million ounces of human milk. Three-quarters went to hospitals in every state in the country; the remaining quarter went to outpatients, largely babies from the NICU that were unable to tolerate formula.”


Authors of the study also found that 74% of the milk purchased from the Internet failed to meet HMBNA criteria before pasteurization.


This is of particular concern for pre-term babies, said Dr. Lisa Thebner, a pediatrician in New York City. “They are more vulnerable, their immune systems are more immature, and they can’t fight off infection like full-term babies,” said Thebner, who was not associated with the study.


Sarah Keim, lead author of the study and a researcher at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, was surprised by the differences between the 101 samples bought over the Internet and the 20 samples from the HMBNA banks. Shipping, or “the number of days it took to get there,” was a significant factor, she said.


In fact, the study found that each additional shipping day resulted in increased bacteria counts. About half of the samples arrived in two days, and 19% of the shipped milk didn’t have any sort of ice pack or cooling agent.


Emma Kwasnica, founder of Human Milk 4 Human Babies, said the study in itself was problematic, because most milk is donated without profit, at a local community level, and rarely is transported for several days to get to a recipient.


Kwasnica did agree that the study showed how “milk is expressed, stored, and transported is important.”


The American Academy of Pediatrics and the FDA both recommend against using breast milk directly from a donor or the Internet, because of the safety risks.


“The bottom line is, if you are going to get milk from an unknown source, you open that baggie of milk and you have to decide … given the consequences are pretty serious, I just don’t think it’s worth the risk,” said Keim. Instead, she recommended using milk from a bank, or donating to a bank, knowing that it undergoes additional safety measures.


“We recognize there’s a risk, but we felt the risk outweighed the benefits,” Richards said.


If you do consider milk sharing, the FDA says to make sure to:
– consult your pediatrician
– consider the risks
– do not use milk directly sourced from individuals or the Internet
– If you decide to milk share, only use a source that has been screened and take whatever precautions to ensure its safety.


Krokodil: The Flesh Eating Drug

Krokodil: The Flesh Eating Drug

This article was originally published by CNN and written by Jen Christensen.


(CNN) — A flesh-eating drug that turns people into zombie-like creatures seems to have made its way to the United States.

This extremely addictive injectable opioid is called krokodil (pronounced like crocodile) or desomorphine. It’s so named in part because users report black or green scaly skin as a side effect.


This weekend five people were hospitalized in the Chicago suburb of Joliet, Illinois, with symptoms similar to cases reported recently by health care providers in Arizona and Oklahoma.


Dr. Abhin Singla said he suspects a woman he treated this weekend was suffering from krokodil addiction. Singla is an internist and addiction specialist at Joliet’s Presence St. Joseph Medical Center. The patient lost significant portions of her legs, he said.


“It’s a zombie drug — it literally kills you from the inside out,” Singla said. “If you want way to die, this is a way to die.”


Krokodil causes serious damage to the veins and soft tissue infections, rapidly followed by gangrene and necrosis, according to a 2013 study (PDF).

The soft tissue damage happens around the injection site. The drug also seems to clump in the veins as it fails to dissolve completely in the blood. The clumps make their way to distant places in the body and start to damage tissue, said Dr. Robert Geller, medical director of the Georgia Poison Center.


Geller said he hopes the drug “doesn’t show its ugly face” in Georgia but said doctors across the country are aware of the drug.


So far there are no officially confirmed American cases of krokodil abuse. To have official confirmation, the Drug Enforcement Administration would need to have a sample of the drug that caused the problem.


A DEA fact sheet about the drug released this month said the National Forensic Laboratory Information System, the DEA database that collects scientifically verified data on drug items and cases, identified two exhibits submitted to these labs as desomorphine in 2004 but none since then.


“It’s not clear how widely used it is in the U.S.,” Geller said. FDA fights drug overdoses with new labels for prescription.


CNN affiliate KOCO-TV in Oklahoma City spoke with a woman who said her best friend from Duncan, Oklahoma, died after using krokodil last year. “The doctors say it ate him from the inside out,” Chelle Fancher told the TV station. “It wasn’t until the next day that they told us that it was krokodil.”But Mark Woodward, a spokesman for the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics, said krokodil was ruled out in the Duncan case through an autopsy. “We watched the reports carefully to see if it was here,” he said. “It was just a drug overdose, and nothing in the system consistent with krokodil.”


There have been many confirmed cases of krokodil abuse in Russia and Ukraine. An estimated 100,000 in Russia and around 20,000 people in Ukraine are estimated to have injected the drug in 2011, according to a study that ran in the International Journal of Drug Policy this year. Experts theorize the drug first spread across Russia and Ukraine when heroin became less available.


Krokodil is cheaper than heroin and can be easily cooked up in someone’s home much like meth.


People making krokodil combine the painkiller codeine with easily available chemicals. They can use iodine; strong alkalies such as Mr. Muscle, a kitchen and bathroom cleaner; hydrochloric acid; red phosphorous from matches; and/or organic solvents such as gasoline or paint thinner, according to the study.


Mortality rates are high among users, according to the study.


In Russia, users frequently are young people with relatively short drug histories, the study found. Medical help is often only sought after users are in the late stages of their addiction and end up with severe mutilations, rotting gums, bone infections, decayed structure of the jaw and facial bones, sores and ulcers on the forehead and skull as well as rotting ears, noses and lips and liver and kidney problems.


“This may be an inexpensive high compared to other drugs, according to its reputation, (but it) is more likely to cause withdrawal symptoms and be a real problem for users,” Geller said. “My advice is to would-be users, ‘Don’t.’ This is a risky way to try and get high.”


The short half-life of the drug means a user’s attention is narrowed to the “process of acquiring and preparing and administering the drug, leaving little time for matters other than avoiding withdrawal and chasing (the) high,” according to one medical study, hence its reputation for creating “zombies.”


Binges on the drug reportedly last over several days. During the binge, a user can show irrational behavior and experience sleep deprivation and exhaustion, memory loss and speech problems.


According to the Joliet hospital, the five people brought in who may have used krokodil said they thought they were buying heroin.


“I think it’s the tip of the iceberg; I think it’s going to get a lot worse before it gets better,” said Singla, the addiction specialist. “I think if it stays on the market long enough, you’re going to have people who are desperate addicts that can’t support their heroin habit but can utilize this drug, not really caring about the consequences, and get the same high for a third of the price.”

Multistate Outbreak of Multidrug-Resistant Salmonella Heidelberg Infections Linked to Foster Farms Brand Chicken

Multistate Outbreak of Multidrug-Resistant Salmonella Heidelberg Infections Linked to Foster Farms Brand Chicken

According to the CDC, On October 7, 2013, U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (USDA-FSIS) issued a Public Health Alert due to concerns that illness caused by Salmonella Heidelberg is associated with chicken products produced by Foster Farms at three facilities in California.


As of October 17, 2013, a total of 338 persons infected with seven outbreak strains of Salmonella Heidelberg have been reported from 20 states and Puerto Rico.


40% of ill persons have been hospitalized, and no deaths have been reported.


Most ill persons (75%) have been reported from California.


Epidemiologic, laboratory, and traceback investigations conducted by local, state, and federal officials indicate that consumption of Foster Farms brand chicken is the likely source of this outbreak of Salmonella Heidelberg infections.


On October 17, 2013, Costco’s El Camino Real store recalled an additional 14,093 units of rotisserie chicken products for which cross-contamination of the post-cooked ready-to-eat product was identified as a likely cause.


Consumers should not eat the recalled chicken products, and retailers and food service establishments should not serve them.


This investigation is ongoing. USDA-FSIS is prepared to take additional actions or expand the investigation based on new evidence.


The outbreak strains of Salmonella Heidelberg are resistant to several commonly prescribed antibiotics. This antibiotic resistance may be associated with an increased risk of hospitalization or possible treatment failure in infected individuals.


It is not unusual for raw poultry from any producer to have Salmonella bacteria. CDC and USDA-FSIS recommend consumers follow food safety tips to prevent Salmonella infection from raw poultry produced by Foster Farms or any other brand.



Check out this great article by Drew Canole over at  You may find some interesting foods on this list.  

The truth is that many common food items have been scientifically shown to increase cancer risk, and some of them substantially. Here are 10 of the most unhealthy, cancer-causing foods that you should never eat again:


1) Genetically-modified organisms (GMOs)

It goes without saying that GMOs have no legitimate place in any cancer-free diet, especially now that both GMOs and the chemicals used to grow them have been shown to cause rapid tumor growth. But GMOs are everywhere, including in most food derivatives made from conventional corn, soybeans, and canola. However, you can avoid them by sticking with certified organic, certified non-GMO verified, and locally-grown foods that are produced naturally without biotechnology.


2) Processed meats

Most processed meat products, including lunch meats, bacon, sausage, and hot dogs, contain chemical preservatives that make them appear fresh and appealing, but that can also cause cancer. Both sodium nitrite and sodium nitrate have been linked to significantly increasing the risk of colon and other forms of cancer, so be sure to choose only uncured meat products made without nitrates, and preferably from grass-fed sources.


3) Microwave popcorn

They might be convenient, but those bags of microwave popcorn are lined with chemicals that are linked to causing not only infertility but also liver, testicular, and pancreatic cancers. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recognizes the perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) in microwave popcorn bag linings as “likely” carcinogenic, and several independent studies have linked the chemical to causing tumors. Similarly, the diacetyl chemical used in the popcorn itself is linked to causing both lung damage and cancer.


4) Soda pop

Like processed meats, soda pop has been shown to cause cancer as well. Loaded with sugar, food chemicals, and colorings, soda pop acidifies the body and literally feeds cancer cells. Common soda pop chemicals like caramel color and its derivative 4-methylimidazole (4-MI) have also specifically been linked to causing cancer.


5) ‘Diet’ foods, beverages

Even worse than conventional sugar-sweetened soda pop, though, is “diet” soda pop and various other diet beverages and foods. A recent scientific review issued by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) of more than 20 separate research studies found that aspartame, one of the most common artificial sweeteners, causes a range of illnesses including birth defects and cancer. Sucralose (Splenda), saccharin and various other artificial sweeteners have also been linked to causing cancer.


6) Refined ‘white’ flours

Refined flour is a common ingredient in processed foods, but its excess carbohydrate content is a serious cause for concern. A study published in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Mile Markers, and Prevention found that regular consumption of refined carbohydrates was linked to a 220 percent increase in breast cancer among women. High-glycemic foods in general have also been shown to rapidly raise blood sugar levels in the body, which directly feeds cancer cell growth and spread.


7) Refined sugars

The same goes for refined sugars, which tend to rapidly spike insulin levels and feed the growth of cancer cells. Fructose-rich sweeteners like high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) are particularly offensive, as cancer cells have been shown to quickly and easily metabolize them in order to proliferate. And since cookies, cakes, pies, sodas, juices, sauces, cereals, and many other popular, mostly processed, food items are loaded with HFCS and other refined sugars, this helps explain why cancer rates are on the rise these days.


8) Conventional apples, grapes, and other ‘dirty’ fruits

Many people think they are eating healthy when they buy apples, grapes, or strawberries from the store. But unless these fruits are organic or verified to be pesticide-free, they could be a major cancer risk. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) found that up to 98 percent of all conventional produce, and particularly the type found on its “dirty” fruits list, is contaminated with cancer-causing pesticides.


9) Farmed salmon

Farmed salmon is another high-risk cancer food, according to Dr. David Carpenter, Director of the Institute for Health and the Environment at the University of Albany. According to his assessment, farmed salmon not only lacks vitamin D, but it is often contaminated with carcinogenic chemicals, PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls), flame retardants, pesticides, and antibiotics.


10) Hydrogenated oils

They are commonly used to preserve processed foods and keep them shelf-stable. But hydrogenated oils alter the structure and flexibility of cell membranes throughout the body, which can lead to a host of debilitating diseases such as cancer. Some manufacturers are phasing out the use of hydrogenated oils and replacing them with palm oil and other safer alternatives, but trans fats are still widely used in processed foods.





ALDI Confirms 30% – 100% Horsemeat in Processed Meats

This story first emerged in the UK earlier this year in February, but the horsemeat scandal started in mid-January when food inspectors in Ireland found horse meat in burgers stocked by several UK supermarkets – including Tesco, Iceland and Lidl. The Swedish company Findus withdrew its beef microwave meals from sale in the UK, France and Sweden. All of these supermarket chains removed Comigal supplied beef products from their shelves.


Last month, the international grocery store chain Aldi became the latest supermarket to confirm a horsemeat contamination in some of its processed meat products. ALDI is considered a top 25 food retailer.  Supermarket says it is angry with its French supplier Comigel after Aldi proceeded to test the products and the result was 30-100% traces of horsemeat specifically the frozen beef lasagna and the spaghetti Bolognese.


“This is completely unacceptable and like other affected companies, we feel angry and let down by our supplier. If the label says beef, our customers expect it to be beef. Suppliers are absolutely clear that they are required to meet our stringent specifications and that we do not tolerate any failure to do so,” said a spokesman for Aldi.


NBC News Reported the U.S. Department of Agriculture agency officials acknowledge privately that species testing for meat imported into the U.S. is performed typically only when there’s a reason to question a shipment.


It should also be noted that the United States Congress banned horse slaughtering in 2006, but the ban has since expired in 2011.  Recently, the Department of Agriculture has approved a horse slaughter facility in New Mexico and in Iowa.