CAM and Primary Care Conference, Vitamin B12, improved eating guidelines, vaccines, fluoride, botanical health claim, and plea to ban glyphosate
Robert Verkerk PhD to speak at Balen’s CAM and Primary Care Conference
Dr Rob Verkerk will be a guest speaker at the upcoming “CAM and Primary Care” conference held at the NEC in Birmingham on 11th May 2015. Organised by specialist insurance brokers Balens, who provide insurance to a variety of the UK’s CAM practitioners, this year’s conference will focus on the “latest research into the effectiveness and benefits of CAM and how that can fit in with Primary Care in the UK today”. Also speaking at the conference will be some of the “UK’s leading lights in the current field of CAM research”. Dr Verkerk’s key presentation will center on what steps practitioners can take to help ensure that patient choice in healthcare continues. He is also helping to facilitate the Balen’s Forum for UK Associations on 10th May, with the central tenet being cross organisation support into the research and effectiveness of CAM.
B12 campaigner Sally Pacholok to address upcoming UK Conference
Having held a similar conference in the US, the UK’s long-awaited vitamin B12 deficiency awareness conference is being held at Loughborough University on 16th May. The conference, entitled “B12 Deficiency and Thyroid Disease”, and organised by Tracey Witty of UK campaign group ‘B12 Deficiency’, is setting about “linking nutrition, genetics and data”. The conference will feature renowned US Vitamin B12 campaigner Sally Pacholok, author of “Could it be B12?”, and about whom a recent award-winning feature film has now been made. Additional keynote speakers include Umahro Cadogan, adjunct Professor of Nutrition, presenting on genetic polymorphisms and the role of B12 and folate in methylation, Dr Malcolm Kendrick, author of “The Great Cholesterol Con”, and Lorraine Cleaver, an expert patient.
Support improved eating guidelines!
As the UK’s obesity trend shows no signs of slowing down with many of the top-down measures failing miserably, on the other side of the world, South African Sport Science Professor, Tim Noakes, faces a hearing. Noakes is well known for his activism on improving eating guidelines and his book the “Real Meal Revolution”, which has improved the health, and body composition, of many. However, on 4th June 2015 Prof Noakes faces charges of disgraceful conduct on social media for advising a mother on Twitter to wean her baby onto a LCHF (Low Carb High Fat) diet. His tweet responded to a mother asking what she should feed her child and suggested she wean it onto a low carbohydrate, moderate protein, nutrient-dense food. The Association for Dietetics in South Africa (ADSA) then reported this to the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA). The swift response of an Avaaz petition to sign and share demonstrates the groundswell of support for Noakes and his campaign worldwide.
Robert Kennedy Junior makes the case against SB277 and mandated vaccines
Our sister organisation, ANH-USA, recently published an article about California’s Bill 277, and other similar bills across the US, that are threatening to eliminate vaccine exemptions. Emotions are running high in the wake of these bills. Robert Kennedy Junior, whose April speech on the California Capitol steps is still very much in the media, puts the case against mandated vaccines very eloquently. He said that according to federal studies, the mission of the US Centers for disease Control and Prevention (CDC) was “to serve the mercantile interests of the vaccine industry”. He concluded “All of the barriers that are meant to protect our children, government, the lawyers, the regulatory agency and the press —the checks and balances in our democratic system that are supposed to stand between corporate power and our little children, have been removed and there’s only one barrier left, and that’s the parents and we need to keep them in the equation”. Concerned US citizens may take action through ANH-USA’s urgent, multi-state Action Alerts.
New ‘independent’ vaccine fact check organisation will “monitor truthful reporting”
A new organisation called ‘Vaccine Fact Check’ was launched in March 2015. In response to what it describes as “a near-total blackout on any articles questioning the safety of vaccines” that have been circulated by the media for several years, it will “monitor the mainstream media and hold it accountable for false or misleading statements”. Vaccine Fact Check “will not take sides on the science in the vaccine debate. We take no issue with either proponents or skeptics who wish to forcefully argue their positions, whether as opinion or analysis”. A Danish TV documentary on Gardasil produced by Denmark’s TV2 has recently gained the organisation’s approval for being ‘balanced’. The documentary examines “an apparent cover-up by the Danish Health Authority, which both refused to acknowledge the potential harm to once active girls following their inoculation with Gardasil, and also refused to provide them with medical treatment that could alleviate their condition”.
The fight for fluoride-free drinking water
After years of sorting through and responding to 19,000 public comments, the US government announced on Monday that it will lower the recommended amount of fluoride added to drinking water. This is the first time this will have happened in more than 50 years and will benefit the 75% of Americans that currently get fluoridated water. In the UK, Fluoride Free Bedford, have produced a new 50-minute documentary called Toxic Tap Water depicting Bedford citizens’ fight to keep fluoride out of the borough’s water supplies. Producer and director, Anna Bragga, says, “Toxic Tap Water goes to the heart of Bedford’s battle against water fluoridation, bringing vivid sounds and imagery of the campaign into private living rooms for the first time. Although a low budget film, Toxic Tap Water packs a punch due to the emotive nature of the subject and the passion and commitment of campaigners.” Co-ordinator and spokesperson for Fluordie Free Bedford, Cynthia Bagchi, says, “I hope the film will help activists and awaken those who are asleep, unaware of the tsunami approaching – the push for water fluoridation.”
Natural alternative to statins in the firing line again
Monacolin K, an active compound naturally present in red yeast rice, is in the firing line again in Europe. Last year the French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety (ANSES) raised safety concerns with regard to it’s associated health claims. Apparently the call has been taken up by other Member States that wish the European Commission to consider warning statements alongside the authorised cholesterol-lowering health claims for red yeast rice. Monacolin K is chemically identical to cholesterol-lowering statin drugs so has been hailed as a natural, food alternative to a medication that carries the risk of serious side effects. ANSES’ warning stated that, “The Agency considers that use of this kind of food supplement containing monacolins may expose consumers to a health risk – especially individuals who are particularly susceptible due to genetic predispositions, pathologies, ongoing treatments etc. ANSES therefore recommends seeking medical advice before taking these products.” This statement followed 25 cases of illness linked to red yeast rice between 2009 and 2013. Discussions have been had with Member States in 2015, but the EC said it is too early to give further details on the nature of the statements given that a timeline could not yet be set.
30,000 doctors ask that glyphosate be banned
More than 30,000 Argentinian doctors and health professionals are asking that Monsanto’s glyphosate be banned. The doctors are part of FESPROSA, Argentina’s Union of medical professionals, and have made the plea following the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) declaration that Monsanto’s best-selling herbicide, Round Up, is “likely carcinogenic”. The union explains, “In our country glyphosate is applied on more than 28 million hectares. Each year, the soil is sprayed with more than 320 million litres, which means that 13 million people are at risk of being affected, according to the Physicians Network of Sprayed Peoples (RMPF). Soy is not the only crop addicted to glyphosate: the herbicide is also used for transgenic maize and other crops. Where glyphosate falls, only GMOs can grow. Everything else dies.” They also mention Andrés Carrasco, the researcher vilified for having discovered the adverse effects of glyphosate, who died a year ago, but has now been vindicated by the WHO’s declaration.