When you eat a salad or a piece of fresh fruit, you likely think to yourself that this food is going to keep you healthy, right? What if we told you that eating these healthy fruits and vegetables might increase the likelihood that you could develop an unwanted, health condition or disease? We aren’t just referring to the widely known dangerous health implications of toxic herbicides and pesticides. No, there is an additional, even more menacing danger we want you to be aware of that is rarely discussed.
THE PUBLICIZED DANGERS OF HERBICIDES & PESTICIDES
The danger of consuming pesticide and herbicide residue is a big issue that many people think about when purchasing produce for their families. So, how dangerous are these sprays? According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), “laboratory studies show that pesticides can cause health problems, such as birth defects, nerve damage, cancer, and other effects that might occur over a long period of time. However, these effects depend on how toxic the pesticide is and how much of it is consumed . . . Infants and children may be especially sensitive to health risks posed by pesticides for several reasons: their internal organs are still developing and maturing, [and] in relation to their body weight, infants and children eat and drink more than adults, possibly increasing their exposure to pesticides in food and water . . . Pesticides may harm a developing child by blocking the absorption of important food nutrients necessary for normal healthy growth. Another way pesticides may cause harm is if a child’s excretory system is not fully developed, the body may not fully remove pesticides. Also, there are ‘critical periods’ in human development when exposure to a toxin can permanently alter the way an individual’s biological system operates.” (1)
So, according to the EPA, pesticides are a concern for adults who are exposed over a long period of time, as well as for children, who are vulnerable to even short-term exposure. In fact, three long-term cohort studies now suggest that certain chemical pesticides can interfere with brain development in young children. (2) It seems, regardless of age, that toxic pest reducing and weed-killing sprays should be avoided. One of the most dangerous and most prevalent of such product is called glyphosate and to learn more about glyphosate you must first understand a little bit about GMOs.
A FOCUS ON GLYPHOSATE – IT ALL STARTS WITH GMOs
The genetic modification of organisms (creating GMOs) takes place in a laboratory and involves artificially inserting genes from bacteria, viruses, insects, animals, or even humans into the DNA of food crops or animals in order to improve their resistance to pests, make them heartier to survive changes in weather, increase yield, and reduce maturation time. GMOs are a controversial topic for many reasons, but what is not often talked about is the danger of consuming these foods as it relates to micronutrient deficiency.
Current statistics show that GMOs are found in more than 80 percent of packaged foods in the United States. (3) While it may be hard to imagine how that is possible, when you think about the fact that 94 percent of all soy, 90 percent of canola, 88 percent of corn, 100 percent of sugar beets, 80 percent of Hawaiian papaya, and 25,000 acres of zucchini and crookneck squash are grown using GMO seeds, it’s actually surprising that there is still 20 percent of foods that don’t contain GMOs.(4) So, how do GMOs contribute to the micronutrient deficiency pandemic?
Some GMO crops have been genetically engineered not to die when sprayed with an herbicide called glyphosate, better known as Roundup. You may have heard of it. That is why these GMO crops are often referred to as “Roundup Ready.” Disturbingly, according to the US Department of the Interior, “Glyphosate is currently the world’s best selling herbicide, used in more than 90 countries and on more than 150 crops.” While the toxic effects of glyphosate have been well documented, the 3 distinct ways that it robs you of the essential micronutrients you need to maintain your health is far less reported.
THREE RARELY REVEALED REASONS THAT GLYPHOSATE IS KILLING YOUR CHANCES FOR GOOD HEALTH
It is a proven fact that when an individual becomes deficient in any specific micronutrient (vitamin, mineral, amino acid, or essential fatty acid) the body is unable to perform the functions that are reliant on this micronutrient being available. Just like how your computer won’t function when the battery is empty, or how your car can’t run with oil or gas, your body requires all of the essential micronutrients to be present when needed.
Would it surprise you to learn that glyphosate makes it far less likely that you will be able to achieve the state of micronutrient sufficiency where your body has all these key nutrients available? There are 3 key ways by which glyphosate destroys your likelihood of absorbing key nutrients.
- Starving The Source
- Utilizing Your Available Micronutrients
- Inhibiting Future Micronutrient Absorption
GLYPHOSATE STARVES THE SOURCE
Where do you get all of your essential micronutrients? From the food you ingest, right? And your food…where does it get its’ micronutrients? From the soil, right? Well, at least that is how it is supposed to work. But, the invention of Roundup ready glyphosate had literally killed not only the weeds, but it has also killed your chance of getting the proper amount of micronutrients you need to maintain basic health.
The way glyphosate works is it actually kills weeds by latching onto, or chelating to, the essential minerals they need to live, thus starving them of these micronutrients. The problem is that it does the same thing to the Roundup Ready crops themselves, causing these crops to contain fewer essential micronutrients. Then these micronutrient-depleted crops, in turn, do the same thing to both the animals and humans who eat them.
Here is what Don Huber, PhD, a GMO expert and emeritus professor of plant pathology at Purdue University, had to say on the subject:
“I have been doing research on glyphosate for 20 years. . . . Glyphosate kills weeds by tying up essential nutrients needed to keep plant defenses active. . . . Micronutrients such as manganese, copper, potassium, iron, magnesium, calcium, and zinc are essential to human health. All of them can be reduced in availability by glyphosate; mineral nutrients are less in glyphosate treated plants. We are seeing a reduction in nutrient quality (in food crops). . . . The [Roundup Ready] gene will reduce micronutrient efficiency up to 50 percent for zinc and manganese. . . . If we continue to abuse the use of glyphosate, it’s just a matter of time before we see more serious negative ramifications.”(5)
In addition to these crops being starved of minerals, glyphosate sprayed crops are also starved of the amino acids tryptophan, tyrosine, methionine and selenomethionine (6). Tryptophan for example is required for the production of serotonin, an important neurotransmitter linked to happiness and well-being. Researchers are now blaming glyphosate for low serotonin levels, which have been linked to suicide, depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and other ailments. Additionally, research also links the lack of the essential amino acid tryptophan with high LDL cholesterol, commonly referred to as bad cholesterol. (7) Can you see how this rarely discussed aspect of glyphosate can have a very negative effect on your ability to become sufficient in essential micronutrients?
GLYPHOSATE UTILIZES YOUR AVAILABLE MICRONUTRIENTS
As we stated earlier, it is well documented that glyphosate is unsafe from a toxic perspective. Laboratory and epidemiological studies confirm that Roundup poses serious health hazards, including endocrine (hormone) disruption, DNA damage, birth defects, neurological disorders, and cancer. Yes, even cancer. A 2015 study published in the Lancet Oncology performed by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) declared that glyphosate is a “probable human carcinogen.” Some of these detrimental effects were found at “realistic” low levels, like those found as residues on food, on feed crops, and in contaminated water. This suggests that people who eat foods made from GMO crops could be ingesting potentially dangerous levels of Roundup residues. Glyphosate has been detected in the air, in rain, in groundwater, in people’s urine, and even circulating in women’s blood. And this is of particular concern, since glyphosate can cross the placental barrier and potentially harm an unborn fetus.
So, how does this increased toxic load affect you from a micronutrient standpoint? Your body only has two ways of handling this toxic load: Either the toxins wreak havoc in your body—causing thyroid issues, neurological damage, or even cancer—or, preferably, you have enough essential micronutrients around for natural detoxification to occur. As it turns out, micronutrients work as the body’s natural detoxifiers, affecting both the absorption and excretion of these toxic contaminants. This means that in order for your body to flush the toxic load from pesticides and herbicides such as glyphosate it has to use your ingested micronutrients— stealing the vitamins and minerals that you need to possibly perform other necessary bodily functions.
All of the antioxidants (vitamins A, C, E, and alpha-lipoic acid) as well as magnesium, selenium, and zinc are depleted in this attempt to reduce toxins. Zinc is actually an important immune strengthener and tissue healer and is necessary for the functioning of many detoxifying enzymes, thus helping to protect the cells from pollutant toxins. So, by forcing your body to utilize your available micronutrients at a greater rate in order to detox glyphosate and other pesticides, these toxins deplete your micronutrients and greatly reduce your body’s ability to function at optimal levels.
Glyphosate Inhibits Future Micronutrient Absorption
The third and final way that glyphosate robs you of essential micronutrients is by destroying your ability to absorb the micronutrients that are in your food. In this example your gut gets a devastating 1 – 2 punch from the glyphosate sprayed GMO produce as well as the glyphosate residue found on these crops, each severely limiting your ability to reach a state of micronutrient sufficiency. Here, our gut gets a devastating 1 – 2 punch.
First, to understand how GMOs (the first punch) inhibit your ability to absorb micronutrients you must first understand what lectins are. Lectins are a plant’s natural self-defense mechanism. While lectins are good for plants, naturally protecting them from insects or any other creature that wants to eat them, they are not good for humans to ingest. This is because lectins are super sticky, causing them to bind to your intestinal tract (causing leaky gut), and because we require a clear intestinal tract to properly absorb vitamins and minerals, and lectins inhibit this ability, they are actually categorized as anti-nutrients and should be avoided.
Well, when scientists want to create GMO crops that are heartier than their natural non-GMO versions that can withstand more glyphosate and fend off more pests, guess what they do? Yep, you guessed it. Scientists splice in lectins in order to enhance the GMO produce’s “natural” pest and fungal resistance, thus increasing the gut irritating effects. (8) So, GMO fruits, vegetables and grains have greater amounts of the anti-nutrient lectin which will bind to your intestinal walls and act like a chisel, forcing apart the cells, causing leaky gut and lowering the odds that you will be able to properly absorb the micronutrients in the food that you have eaten.
And now for the second punch to the gut…the glyphosate itself. Glyphosate acts as a potent bacteria-killer in the gut, wiping out delicate beneficial microflora that help protect us from disease. While the “good guys” in your digestive tract, protective microorganisms such as bacillus and lactobacillus, are destroyed, the harmful pathogens like Clostridium botulinum, Salmonella, and E. coli are able to survive glyphosate in the gut. Some of the destroyed “good guys” are actually responsible for the manufacturing of B12 and other B vitamins in the gut. Additionally, the beneficial bacteria in the human intestine produce about 75% of the vitamin K the body absorbs each day. Without these beneficial bacteria these essential micronutrients will need to be supplemented. The destruction of healthy bacteria in your gut, along with your newly compromised protective gut lining creates an environment that is not conducive to the proper creation or absorption of your micronutrients.
WHAT CAN YOU DO?
Ok, so you get the point, and you are likely thinking to yourself right now what, if anything, can be done to protect yourself from the health conditions and diseases caused by micronutrient deficiency? Well, the good news is there are four simple steps that you can take right now that will greatly reduce your chances of both ingesting GMOs and glyphosate as well as all but insure your sufficiency in the essential micronutrients you need to experience extraordinary health.
- Choose organic foods. Glyphosate and other chemical herbicides and pesticides are banned for use in organic agriculture. Instead, organic farmers focus on natural ways to build healthy soil and support the growth of micronutrient rich plants. To find local sustainable farmers, go to LocalHarvest.org.
- Pass on processed foods. About 80 percent of the processed foods found in most grocery stores contain the glyphosate-laden, GMO ingredients corn, soy, or canola. By passing on processed foods in general and eating more whole foods (or choosing organic processed foods) you can greatly reduce your exposure to these micronutrient-depleting ingredients.
- Fight for GMO labeling. The fact is we are all in this thing called life together. Since nearly all GMOs, current and ones in the development pipeline, are engineered to tolerate glyphosate, labeling GMOs can help everyone avoid these micronutrient depleting “Franken Foods.”
- Last, but not least – drink nutreince daily. The best way to make sure your body has all the essential micronutrients it needs to keep you healthy and naturally detoxify your body is to eat an organic whole food diet and supplement with a well formulated, easy to absorb multivitamin like nutreince. While a multivitamin is a supplement to, and not a substitute for a healthy diet, drinking nutreince twice a day (AM & PM) is like protecting yourself with daily health insurance that will help you to achieve and maintain the state of micronutrient sufficiency you need to live an extraordinary life.
To learn more about our patented multivitamin watch our 3 free videos on proper vitamin and mineral absorption here: ABCsofSupplementation.com
- non-gmoreport.com/articles/may10/consequenceso_widespread_glyphosate_use .php.
- Samsel A, Seneff S. Glyphosate, pathways to modern diseases II: Celiac sprue and gluten intolerance. Interdisciplinary Toxicology. 2013;6(4):159-184. doi:10.2478/intox-2013-002