Friday, February 29, 2008
Government Concedes Vaccine-Autism Case in Federal Court - Now What?
By David Kirby
Posted February 25, 2008 | 12:42 PM (EST)
After years of insisting there is no evidence to link vaccines with the onset of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), the US government has quietly conceded a vaccine-autism case in the Court of Federal Claims.
The unprecedented concession was filed on November 9, and sealed to protect the plaintiff's identify. It was obtained through individuals unrelated to the case.
The claim, one of 4,900 autism cases currently pending in Federal "Vaccine Court," was conceded by US Assistant Attorney General Peter Keisler and other Justice Department officials, on behalf of the Department of Health and Human Services, the "defendant" in all Vaccine Court cases.
The child's claim against the government -- that mercury-containing vaccines were the cause of her autism -- was supposed to be one of three "test cases" for the thimerosal-autism theory currently under consideration by a three-member panel of Special Masters, the presiding justices in Federal Claims Court.
Keisler wrote that medical personnel at the HHS Division of Vaccine Injury Compensation (DVIC) had reviewed the case and "concluded that compensation is appropriate."
The doctors conceded that the child was healthy and developing normally until her 18-month well-baby visit, when she received vaccinations against nine different diseases all at once (two contained thimerosal).
Days later, the girl began spiraling downward into a cascade of illnesses and setbacks that, within months, presented as symptoms of autism, including: No response to verbal direction; loss of language skills; no eye contact; loss of "relatedness;" insomnia; incessant screaming; arching; and "watching the florescent lights repeatedly during examination."
Seven months after vaccination, the patient was diagnosed by Dr. Andrew Zimmerman, a leading neurologist at the Kennedy Krieger Children's Hospital Neurology Clinic, with "regressive encephalopathy (brain disease) with features consistent with autistic spectrum disorder, following normal development." The girl also met the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders (DSM-IV) official criteria for autism.
In its written concession, the government said the child had a pre-existing mitochondrial disorder that was "aggravated" by her shots, and which ultimately resulted in an ASD diagnosis.
"The vaccinations received on July 19, 2000, significantly aggravated an underlying mitochondrial disorder," the concession says, "which predisposed her to deficits in cellular energy metabolism, and manifested as a regressive encephalopathy with features of ASD."
To read the rest of Mr. Kirby's piece and to post your comments, please visit
Thursday, February 28, 2008
BBC. Sounds reasonble to do exercises that are "fun"--you're likely to stick with it, studies show...:
"The NHS has some new advice for people struggling to schedule a fitness routine into their daily lives - a workout between the sheets.
According to the NHS Direct website, 'sexercise' can lower the risk of heart attacks and helps people live longer.
Endorphins released during orgasm stimulate immune system cells, which also helps target illnesses like cancer, as well as wrinkles, it states.
Sexual health experts said such claims could not be scientifically proven.
'It's good to see the NHS are promoting sexual wellbeing,' Dr Melissa Sayer told the Guardian newspaper.
'Yes, there is evidence that sex has benefits for mental wellbeing, but to say there is a link with reduced risk of heart disease and cancer is taking the argument too far.'
NHS Direct, however, told the paper the content was 'backed by science and clinical evidence' and 'isn't just a bit of fun'."
read more here.
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
I got this off a journalists' siste:
Hormone Therapy Increases Frequency of Abnormal Mammograms, Breast Biopsies
Combined hormone therapy appears to increase the risk that women will have abnormal mammograms and breast biopsies and may decrease the effectiveness of both methods for detecting breast cancer, according to a report in the February 25 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals. (Embargo expired on 25-Feb-2008 at 16:00 ET)
Archives of Internal Medicine
—American Medical Association (AMA)
Monday, February 25, 2008
Here's an interesting article from the New York Times Business section that gives you a little insight on how most perfumes ARE just synthetic chemicals. And remember that musk, synthetic or not, may interfere with hormones.
Remember, what you put on your skin gets into your blood. How do you think "the patch" works?
Ahhh, the Seductive Fragrance of Molecules Under Patent
Its scent is reminiscent of a mixture of a just-picked apple and a rose in its prime. But to the Takasago International Corporation, which manufactures this synthetic material, it smells even sweeter.
Last year, that chemical, with the trade name Thesaron, became an essential ingredient in a new perfume, Silver Shadow Altitude, released by Davidoff, a brand owned by Coty. Playing a role in one of the most successful international fragrance trade names — Davidoff has had a scent on the top five perfume best-seller list for the last 20 years — means that molecule is highly profitable for Takasago.
Similarly, the scent makers — Symrise of Holzminden, Germany; Givaudan of Geneva; International Flavors and Fragrances of New York; and Takasago of Tokyo — spend billions on research to find new smell molecules, patent them and sell them. The innovative scents of these “captives,” as the patented molecules are known, are crucial to enticing consumers to buy the 600 or so new perfumes introduced every year and appealing to buyers of other fragrant products like soaps and air fresheners.
Captives have other virtues as well. Jean Jacques, Takasago perfumer, put Thesaron in Altitude, for example, because it solved three problems: Thesaron has the fruity/rosy note of a very expensive class of molecules called rose ketones, but it costs far less and can be used in unlimited amounts (rose ketones are restricted because they set off allergic reactions at high doses)....One example is a molecule that stays firmly on fabric, perfect for scenting laundry detergents. “That’s a specific attribute we like to see,” he said....One recent successful Takasago captive is l-muscone. A musk, l-muscone has been known for years, but no one could come up with a way to make it economically until Takasago did. It then patented not the molecule but the synthesis pathways to produce it.
L-muscone is still expensive (“It’s a luxury material,” Mr. Warr said, “costing high four figures per pound”), and it has no trade name yet because Takasago does not sell it to anyone else. It’s a “nature identical” — identical to the molecule found naturally in a gland in the musk deer — but Takasago produces only the synthetic version.
Andrea Lupo, a perfumer at Takasago, put l-muscone in the perfume Intimately Night for David and Victoria Beckham and Coty, their licensee.
read more here.Use our info:
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
This is interesting. We used to love our 1986 Jetta, not only for its 30something mpg for also because it felt very safe, as in very manueverable. My SUV driving contingent in the family used to make fun of us. We're just sad the car diedo n the side of 95 with almost 200K miles!
We drive a Volvo compact, nowhere near the great gas mileage, but it's been very safe (e.g., when we were rearended by a pickup truck driver)
Laura Schewel is an analyst with MOVE - The Transportation Innovation Group and Noah Buhayar is a fellow at Rocky Mountain Institute.
Many consumers believe that the goals of a "safer car" and a "more fuel-efficient car" are at loggerheads, and that any increase in gas mileage will lead directly to increased fatalities.
This misconception is based in large part on a common assumption: The heavier the car, the safer it must be. Collectively, Americans have bought into this idea. The mass of the average personal vehicle in the U.S. has gone up 29% since 1987.
While that idea that more steel equals more protection seems intuitive, it turns out to be false. In fact, the best scientific research shows that automotive safety has nothing to do with vehicle weight, but everything to do with vehicle size and design.
Safety for you and your family
Heavier cars are not safer in a collision. Why? Cars are not simple, solid objects that collide like billiard balls on a table; they have crush zones and structural features designed to absorb impact.
The more crush zone available (the longer or wider the car) and the better the structural design, the safer the occupants will be in a crash.
These examples from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, an independent, nonprofit organization that compiles fatality statistics, illustrate the point:
- Drivers in a Dodge Neon or Chevrolet Cavalier (2,400 and 2,700 pounds, respectively) are twice as likely to die in their vehicles as drivers of Volkswagen Jettas or Honda Civics (2,300 and 2,700 pounds), due to the superior crash design and safety features of the Jetta and Civic.
- Drivers of a Toyota 4Runner (the safest SUV) are 25 times less likely to die in their vehicles than those who drive Chevrolet Blazers -- the least-safe SUV and the least-safe personal vehicle -- again due to superior design. (Statistics cover model years 1995-1999.)
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
Also, watch the movie King Corn if you want to understand (graphically) why, when you feed cows corn instead of what they're supposed to eat--grass--makes them SICK.
P.S. I love how the Ag. Dept says it's "probably safe" because the meat's been eaten already. WTF??? How's that going to protect you from whatever disease the sick cow was carrying??
From the New York Times:
A California meat company on Sunday issued the largest beef recall in history, 143 million pounds, some of which was used in school lunch programs, Department of Agriculture officials announced.
The recall by the Westland/Hallmark Meat Company, based in Chino, Calif., comes after a widening animal-abuse scandal that started after the Humane Society of the United States distributed an undercover video on Jan. 30 that showed workers kicking sick cows and using forklifts to force them to walk.
The video raised questions about the safety of the meat, because cows that cannot walk, called downer cows, pose an added risk of diseases including mad cow disease. The federal government has banned downer cows from the food supply.
Agriculture officials said there was little health risk from the recalled meat because the animals had already passed pre-slaughter inspection and much of the meat had already been eaten. In addition, the officials noted that while mad cow disease was extremely rare, the brains and spinal cords from the animals — the area most likely to harbor the disease — would not have entered the human food chain.
“The great majority has probably been consumed,” said Dr. Richard Raymond, the Agriculture Department’s under secretary for food safety.
The video was embarrassing for the Department of Agriculture, as inspectors are supposed to be monitoring slaughterhouses for abuse. It surfaced after a year of increasing concerns about the safety of the meat supply amid a sharp increase in the number of recalls tied to a particularly deadly form of the E. coli pathogen.
There were 21 recalls of beef related to the potentially deadly strain of E. coli last year, compared with eight in 2006 and five in 2005. No one is quite sure what caused the increase, though theories include the cyclical nature of pathogens and changes in cattle-feeding practices caused by the ethanol boom.
Use our info USERNAME: GreenFertility
Monday, February 18, 2008
I'm posting this from Mike Adams the Health Ranger because I feel I've kind of noticed the same thing. At least, I remember the kids at Columbine were coming off Paxil or something like that. Scary stuff.
Here's a link to PBS' Frontline (and they're questioning whether PBS still deserves funding???) on the overprescription of psychotropic drugs to VERY young children and the permanent harm it can do: The Medicated Child.
Dear NaturalNews / NewsTarget readers,
Due to widespread misreporting of the Illinois shooting incident by the mainstream media (MSM), I'm issuing a weekend e-mail alert that tells the truth about the link between psychiatric drugs and every school shooting that has taken place in the United States in the last decade. Here's the first section from the article posted today:
(NaturalNews) It comes as no surprise to anyone who's been following school shootings all the way back to the Colombine High massacre in Colorado: Every young, male shooter that has gone on a killing spree in the United States also has a history of treatment with psychotropic drugs -- typically SSRI antidepressants. These shootings have three things in common: 1) The shooters are young males. 2) The shooters exhibit a mind-numbed disconnect with reality. 3) The shooters have a history of taking psychiatric drugs.
This latest shooting by 27-year-old Stephen Kazmierczak shares the same three factors. Stephen was considered a "normal, undistressed person," according to press reports. He was considered "an outstanding student" and even received a Dean's Award for outstanding work in sociology. So what happened to Stephen's brain that caused him to snap and open fire on students in a college classroom?
Psych meds make good people do bad things
Psychiatric drugs, of course, are well known to cause extremely violent thoughts and behavior in young males. This is actually acknowledged by the FDA and is found in the black-box warnings printed on the packaging for such drugs. In Europe, the prescribing of many such drugs to children and teens is actually illegal. But in the United States, where psychiatric medications have become the "new medicine" for American youth, nobody seems to pay attention to the simple fact that every school shooting we've seen in the last decade has been committed by a young male with a history of treatment with these dangerous mind-altering chemicals...
- Mike Adams, the Health Ranger
Thursday, February 14, 2008
Nectar of Life sent me their HAPPY PLACE dark roast, and wow it was so strong I use about 6 beans and I'm done. Their coffee is fair trade, organic, and kosher, and the taste was fantastic. They are serious about their roasting (from the website):
Co-Founder and Master Roaster, Martin F. Jennings III, graduated with High Honors from the University of California, Davis with a degree in Viticulture and Enology. Martin went on to make fine wines in both California and Washington State. His love of coffee and organic products brought him to a point where he knew that there must be a way to roast organic coffees to have the same full-bodied flavors as the world's finest non-organic gourmet coffees. With his experience in chemistry, and sensory (flavor) science Martin left the wine industry to pursue roasting the finest organic coffees of the world. The result is the Nectar of Life®.
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
Could it possibly be that both are right?
When I wrote the article for Natural Health on fermented foods, I noticed that most cultures eat soy as a fermented product (tempeh, miso, in Korea, doenchang). It appears fermentation helps predigest the soy and also neutralize all sorts of things that are bad for your thyroid, etc. And, not surprisingly, it's the weirdly processed soy (e.g., your soy baloney) that's the worst for you. Make sense? So now that the US is overproducing soy and pushing it on everyone...well...you see where I'm going. Put it this way, eating unfermented soy or taking soy supplements might not be the healthiest thing to do, especially if you have thyroid disease and/or are trying to get pregnant.
From Natural News:
Perhaps the most disturbing of soy's ill effects on health has to do with its phytoestrogens, which can mimic the effects of the female hormone, oestrogen. These phytoestrogens have been found to have adverse effects on various human tissues, and drinking only two glasses of soy milk daily for one month has enough of the chemical to alter a woman's menstrual cycle.
Soy is particularly problematic for infants and it would be very wise to avoid giving them soy-derived products, since it has been estimated that infants who are exclusively fed soy formula receive the equivalent of five birth control pills worth of oestrogen every day. Check out (www.westonaprice.org) to find some alarming research and statistics on what can go wrong when infants and children are regularly fed soy formula.
In order to derive some benefit from soy, consuming only fermented soy products - such as organic miso (mugi barley and genmai miso are the best), organic tempeh, soy sauce or tamari and natto - is the way to do it. This is because the phytic acid, which is inherent in soy beans, has been neutralized in the process of fermentation. Consuming fermented soy is very beneficial in recolonizing the friendly bacteria in the large intestine, which neutralizes the 'unfriendly' bacteria and allows for greater general assimilation of foods and nutrients.
Another common fallacy is that soy foods couldn't possibly have a downside because Asian cultures eat large quantities of soy every day and consequently remain free of most western diseases. In reality, the people of China, Japan and other Asian countries eat very little soy. The soy industry's own figures show that soy consumption in China, Indonesia, Korea, Japan and Taiwan ranges from 10 to 90 grams per day. That is grams of soy food, not grams of soy protein alone. Compare this with a cup of tofu (250 grams) or soy milk (240 grams). Many Americans and Australians today would be consuming a cup of tofu and a couple of glasses of soy milk every day. They might also add veggie burgers to this, thinking they are getting their much needed protein intake. Infants on soy formula are probably the most disadvantaged, as that is their main source of nutrition and they ingest large amounts of soy relative to their body weight. Often the side effects are not noticed but, as they are growing up, runny noses, frequent colds, irritability, severe sugar cravings and food intolerance develop.
The summary below outlines the adverse effects of unfermented soy products:
* Trypsin inhibitors in soy interfere with protein digestion and may cause pancreatic disorders. In test animals soy containing trypsin inhibitors caused stunted growth.
* Soy phytoestrogens disrupt endocrine function and have the potential to cause infertility and to promote breast cancer in adult women.
* Soy phytoestrogens are potent anti-thyroid agents that cause hypothyroidism and may cause thyroid cancer. In infants, consumption of soy formula has been linked to autoimmune thyroid disease.
Vitamin B12 analogs in soy are not absorbed and actually increase the body's requirement for B12.
Soy foods increase the body's requirement for vitamin D.
* Fragile proteins are denatured during high temperature processing to make soy protein isolate and textured vegetable protein.
* Free glutamic acid or MSG, a potent neurotoxin, is formed during soy food processing and additional amounts are added to many soy foods.
* Soy foods contain high levels of aluminum which is toxic to the nervous system and the kidneys.
--Teya Skae M.A., B.A.,Dip Health Sciences, Dip Clinical Nutrition
read more here.
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
"Infants and toddlers exposed to baby lotions, shampoos and powders carry high concentrations of hormone-altering chemicals in their bodies that might have reproductive effects, according to a new scientific study of babies born in Los Angeles and two other U.S. cities. The research, to be published today in the medical journal Pediatrics, found that as the use of baby care products rose, so did the concentration of phthalates, which are used in many fragrances. The lead scientist in the study, Dr. Sheela Sathyanarayana of the University of Washington's Department of Pediatrics, said the findings suggested that many baby care products contain a variety of phthalates that enter children's bodies through their skin.
Manufacturers do not list phthalates as ingredients on labels, so it is unknown which products contain them. The researchers at the University of Washington and the University of Rochester stressed that the potential effects on babies were uncertain. But previous animal and human research suggests that early exposure to some phthalates could reduce testosterone and alter reproductive organs, particularly in males." Marla Cone reports for the Los Angeles Times Feb. 4, 2008.
This item courtesy of Society of Environmental Journalist’s “EJ Today” : www.sej.org
Monday, February 11, 2008
NEW YORK - Spending hours on a cell phone each day may affect the quality of a man’s sperm, preliminary research suggests.
In a study of 361 men seen at their infertility clinic, researchers at the Cleveland Clinic found an association between the patients’ cell phone use and their sperm quality.
On average, the more hours the men spent on their cell phones each day, the lower their sperm count and the greater their percentage of abnormal sperm.
Read more here
Friday, February 08, 2008
(p.s. there's an article in the NYT about how the vigorous man shown sculling [rowing] in the river thanks to the benefits of Lipitor isn't even Dr. Jarvik himself! Apparently he hates the outdoors...)
** according to the ABC news, it was 1.35 million (via the blog Pharmalot).
AP DataStreamAAA - Jan. 08, 2008
WASHINGTON_House Democrats are investigating whether consumers are being misled by advertisements for Lipitor, featuring the world-renowned inventor of an artificial heart.
In the ads, which began their heavy rotation in 2006, Dr. Robert Jarvik talks about the benefits of Pfizer's cholesterol-lowering drug, the world's best-selling medication.
Michigan Reps. John Dingell and Bart Stupak sent a letter to Pfizer Monday, questioning Jarvik's credibility.
"In the ads, Dr. Jarvik appears to be giving medical advice, but apparently, he has never obtained a license to practice or prescribe medicine," the lawmakers state. A spokesman for Dingell on Monday could not confirm whether Jarvik is certified to practice medicine, but cited media reports that he never took an internship or practiced medicine.
Jarvik could not be reached by phone Monday evening.
According to the Web site of his company, Jarvik holds a degree in engineering from New York University and a medical degree from the University of Utah.
After earning a medical degree, physicians must complete a series of tests to earn certification to practice medicine.
Pfizer spokesman Chris Loder said Jarvik's presence in the advertisements is meant to educate consumers on the importance heart health.
read more here.
Thursday, February 07, 2008
From the AP:
NEW YORK -died of an accidental overdose of prescription drugs that included painkillers, sleeping pills and anti-anxiety medication, the medical examiner said Wednesday.
died as the result of acute intoxication by the combined effects of oxycodone, hydrocodone, diazepam, temazepam, alprazolam and doxylamine," medical examiner's spokeswoman Ellen Borakove said in a statement.
The drugs are the generic names for the OxyContin painkiller, the anti-anxiety drug Valium, Xanax, an anti-anxiety drug, and the sleep aids Restoril and Unisom. Hydrocodone is another name for ibuprofen.
Wednesday, February 06, 2008
Newswise — Children of women who undergo an extremely stressful event—such as the death of a close relative—during the first trimester of pregnancy appear more likely to develop schizophrenia, according to a report in the February issue of Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.
“The common conception that a mother’s psychological state can influence her unborn baby is to some extent substantiated by the literature,” the authors write as background information in the article. “Severe life events during pregnancy are consistently associated with an elevated risk of low birth weight and prematurity.” Schizophrenia, a disabling condition associated with abnormal brain structure and function, is increasingly believed to begin in early brain development. Environmental factors, including those occurring during pregnancy, and susceptibility genes may interact to influence risk.
Ali S. Khashan, M.Sc., of the University of Manchester, England, and colleagues used data from 1.38 million Danish births occurring between 1973 and 1995. Women were linked to close family members using a national registry, and the same registry was used to determine if any of these relatives died or received a diagnosis of cancer, heart attack or stroke during each mother’s pregnancy. Their children were followed from the 10th birthday through June 30, 2005 or until they died, moved out of the country, or developed schizophrenia.
During the study period, mothers of 21,987 children were exposed to the death of a relative during pregnancy, 14,206 were exposed to a relatives’ serious illness during pregnancy and 7,331 of the offspring developed schizophrenia. The risk of schizophrenia and related disorders was approximately 67 percent greater among the offspring of women who were exposed to the death of a relative during the first trimester. However, death of a relative up to six months before or any other time during pregnancy was not related to risk for schizophrenia in the child, nor was exposure to serious illness in a relative. The association between a family death and risk of schizophrenia appeared to be significant only for individuals without a family history (parents, grandparents or siblings) of mental illness.
“Risk associated with exposure to a well-defined, objective stressful event confined to the first trimester of pregnancy suggests a number of possible mechanisms,” the authors write. Chemicals released by the mother’s brain in response to stress may have an effect on the fetus’ developing brain. These effects may be strongest in early pregnancy, when protective barriers between the mother and fetus are not fully constructed.
(Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2008;65:146-152. Available pre-embargo to the media at www.jamamedia.org.)
Editor’s Note: This study was funded by Tommy’s the Baby Charity and the Stanley Medical Research Institute. Please see the article for additional information, including other authors, author contributions and affiliations, financial disclosures, funding and support, etc.
Tuesday, February 05, 2008
Newswise — Eating fish is not the only way of increasing the omega-3s in our diet, as "The Queen of Fats: Why Omega-3s were removed from our diet
Newswise — Eating fish is not the only way of increasing the omega-3s in our diet, as "The Queen of Fats: Why Omega-3s were removed from our diet and what we can do to replace them," by science writer Susan Allport shows.
Many of the foods we eat every day, including eggs and bacon, used to be full of these essential nutrients -- when the animals they came from were eating grass, insects, and other green foods. Omega-3s originate in the green leaves of plants (not fish, as many people believe), and they accumulate in animals that eat those leaves, including fish.
Now that our livestock eat mostly seeds and grains, our foods are full of a second family of polyunsaturated fats, omega-6s which are much more prevalent in those parts of plants. This second family of polyunsaturated fats is also essential for health, but it competes with omega-3s for positions in cell membranes and affects cells in different ways. Fats in this family are not as dynamic, or speedy, as omega-3s. They also produce cell messengers called prostaglandins that are far more inflammatory and far more likely to cause thrombosis or blood clotting. As our reliance on seeds and seed oils has increased since the turn of the last century, so has the incidence of heart disease and other inflammatory disorders.
It may not be practical for us to eat only grass-fed meats and eggs. But it’s also not possible for us to catch, or raise, enough fish to correct this problem. We can, however, increase our omega-3s by eating small amounts of fish and grass-fed animals and using vegetable oils with a healthier balance of omega-6s to omega-3s. The Queen of Fats (University of California Press), out in paperback February, 2008 and described as a “must read” by physicians and nutritionists, explains the reasoning behind these simple steps and tells the compelling history of the omega-3 research.
Monday, February 04, 2008
put in his/her crop and you reap in the rewards (farm fresh food). Now's the time to join.
We have been members of Ledge End's CSA for years. Nice peeps, organic, they even tested the soil for heavy metals at our request. Besides meeting the meat, it's also nice to know where your veggies come from.
A little about Ledge Ends Produce
Ledge Ends Produce is located at the historic Briggs Boesch Farm in East Greenwich RI. This property was purchased by the East Greenwich Land Trust in 2001 in an effort to preserve a tresured natural and historic resource. Our farm is committed to growing high quality fresh vegetables and small fruits without the use of synthetic pesticides or fertilizers. The main market for the farm is our 200 member Community Supported Agricuture Program. Throughout the season the farm is host to several worshops with culinary, agricultural and natural themes. The farm is always open to the public for walks on the trails or through the fields.More info here.