Last week, we looked at a link between weed-killers and cancer in animals and humans.
And now, in a first for the country, California’s Environmental Protection Agency (Cal/EPA) plans to list glyphosate as being known to cause cancer.
Glyphosate is the active ingredient in Monsanto’s (MON) Roundup herbicide.
According to a “notice of intent” issued last week by California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA), the effort falls under California’s Proposition 65.
Under Prop 65, the state is required to publish a list of chemicals known to cause cancer, birth defects and/or other reproductive harm.
The use of Roundup has been an ongoing health concern/debate for a while. But this is the first time the government has stepped in with a verdict.
Make no mistake, this is a landmark verdict.
In the U.S. agriculture sector, Roundup is the most-used herbicide and the second-most-used in the home and garden market.
So much so that in a recent study done over a 12-year period, which focused on Mississippi’s highly fertile Delta agricultural region, Roundup was present in 75% of air and rainfall samples.
Farmers use glyphosate-based herbicides to control weeds. They spray it on these weeds in a diluted solution that is rapidly taken up by the plants. It works by blocking a metabolic pathway that is essential for the plant’s growth.
Glyphosate contamination is systemic, meaning it’s present in every cell of the plant, from root to tip. In other words, it’s not just an issue of topical contamination, as with many other agricultural chemicals sprayed on crops.
Conventional wisdom says you can thoroughly wash your produce to remove topical residues. But you simply cannot remove glyphosate from your produce. Neither can food and animal feed manufacturers who use glyphosate-based herbicides.
When you ingest glyphosate-treated foods, you’re probably getting more than you bargained for. They are suspected to have some pretty harmful effects on the body, including …
Nutritional deficiencies, as glyphosate immobilizes certain nutrients and alters the nutritional composition of the treated crop
Disruption of the biosynthesis of aromatic amino acids. (These are essential amino acids not produced in your body that must be supplied via your diet.)
Increased toxin exposure
Sulfate deficiency — impairment of sulfate transport and sulfur metabolism
Systemic toxicity — a side effect of extreme disruption of microbial function throughout your body; beneficial microbes in particular, allowing for overgrowth of pathogens
Enhancement of damaging effects of other food-borne chemical residues and environmental toxins as a result of glyphosate shutting down the function of detoxifying enzymes
Creation of ammonia (a byproduct created when certain microbes break down glyphosate), which can lead to brain inflammation associated with autism and Alzheimer’s disease
These types of harmful changes within the body can cause different diseases to develop over time, which initial studies done on glyphosate were not able to identify. (A top medical journal has recently called for more studies to be done.)
In the nearly 20 years of intensifying exposure, scientists have been documenting the health consequences of Roundup and glyphosate in our food, in the water we drink, in the air we breathe and where our children play.
In addition to different types of cancer, glyphosate has been attributed to other dangerous and life-threatening diseases such as autism, ADHD, birth defects, diabetes, heart disease, thyroid disease, liver disease, MS, Parkinson’s and others.
A recent (and alarming) list of 15 diseases linked to Monsanto’s Roundup was compiled by the health organization EcoWatch. You can find the list here.
What’s important to note is that California is only labeling glyphosate as a carcinogen, not banning it.
Other countries such as the Netherlands and France have banned Roundup, and Brazil will soon follow. This should serve as a warning for all other countries in the world.
Within the coming months and years, we should see an increased awareness of the health effects of herbicides like Roundup. It will be interesting to see if other states or even the federal government follow California’s initiative.
Monsanto’s massive presence in U.S. agriculture will likely result in a long battle between advocates of banning glyphosate and different state governments, particularly those states whose economies heavily rely on agriculture.
One thing is certain, though. Glyphosate-based Roundup is an issue that must be further researched and studied, as the potential long-term effects may be devastating and irreversible.
Happy and healthy investing,
Uncommon Wisdom Daily