Yes to Life's new cancer care guide, high fat/low carb diet evidence ignored, Glyphosate decision postponed, Ghanaian women defend seeds, Turkish mandatory vaccination illegal, Malaria drug concerns, UK fracking approval, Romanian smart meter rollout.
Yes to Life’s resourceful new book: The Cancer Revolution
A richly resourceful goldmine of information for those whose lives have been touched by cancer has just been released in the form of a new book: “The Cancer Revolution”, from UK’s integrative cancer care charity Yes to Life. The the new guide to “Integrative Medicine, —the future of cancer care” provides information on integrating complementary and conventional medicine. The book is written by Patricia Peat, with 37 expert contributors including our very own Dr Robert Verkerk. Robin Daly, the founder of Yes to Life, says the book “represents the fruition of a long-held dream to pull together the best information on the broadest range of approaches to cancer”. Yes to Life want the book to “act as a catalyst for individuals to empower themselves, and to become part of a revolution that promises to change the experience of cancer treatment completely”. That revolution is Integrative Medicine, which is “the broadest possible approach to treatment, one that leaves no stone unturned”. In the new handbook, “Patricia Peat has assembled a world-class team of experts to offer practical information on nutrition, lifestyle, conventional medicine and a range of cutting-edge treatments, as well as helpful guidance for navigating through cancer and beyond”.
Low fat lobby fail to recognise world-class studies
The UK National Obesity Forum recently published a report, calling for a more evidence-based approach to government eating guidelines and health. It’s causing something of a backlash among those who advocate the low fat/ high carbohydrate diet. But an article by medical journalist Jane Feinmann, featured on Jerome Burne’s HealthInsightUK, reveals a disturbing trend behind this: “She has found that around 50 high quality studies reporting strong evidence for the benefit of a low carb diet were absent from the list of trials considered by nutritional scientific committees in both the USA and the UK”. Feinmann reports on the work of expert whistleblower Nina Teicholz, published in the BMJ , which analysed the expert report behind the Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA's) latest 2015 update. She claims that they “fail to reflect much of the relevant scientific literature in its review of topics”. Teicholz has been subsequently attacked for her revelations. Feinmann also highlights the incomplete evidence base from which the UK Eatwell Plate was designed. It’s all contained in the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) report, which ignored world-class studies showing the benefit of high fat low carb diet.
EC Glyphosate decision postponed again
The European Commission’s revised proposal for re-approval of glyphosate has, “Failed to secure the required majority of EU governments’ support”. Glyphosate is the active ingredient in Monsanto’s controversial Roundup herbicides. It was proposed that re-approval for use in Europe should extend for 9 years, instead of the usual 15, but with some restrictions. This is the second time the decision has been postponed, “following disagreement among representatives of EU governments”. It was also reported that, “If no agreement is reached by the end of June, the license will expire and glyphosate will have to be withdrawn from use in the EU within 6 months”. As we urged previously, it is still beneficial to email your MEPs and Tweet the European Commissioner with your comments and concerns.
Ghanaian women resist ‘Monsanto Law’
Ghana’s women are defending their farming traditions from a proposed bill that threatens their ability to “save and exchange seeds after each growing season”. The age-old practice “ensures that small scale farmers have seeds to sow the following year”. The traditional practice of “keeping seeds and sharing seeds is essential for sustainable livelihoods as well as ensuring communities have access to nutritious and culturally relevant food”. But it is under threat by a proposed bill that has been dubbed the ‘Monsanto Law’, which aims to remove control of the seed by farmers, and transfer it into the hands of corporations, as well as open the door to GM crops. Behind this agenda is the New Alliance, made up of the Gates Foundation and British aid funds. However, civil society groups, rural women networks, unions, faith groups and farmers organisations are actively fighting to protect the rights to their own seeds and the freedom to protect their way of life. The people of Ghana are saying No.
Turkish mandatory vaccination illegal
The top administrative court in Turkey, the Supreme Court of Appeals has ruled against mandatory vaccination. They reportedly said, “the program would lead to violation of individual rights”. The same court reportedly later, “ruled in favor of parents who did not want their kids to be vaccinated”. The report added, “the current immunization program could not continue as it lacked a valid legal framework”. Last December, the court said “the existing law did not permit authorities to act against parents' wishes”. The Turkish government “requires that a newborn be given 16 different types of vaccination in its first 24 months”, and local health centres “track vaccination progress and alert parents when their child's shots are due”. Parents have been ‘technically’ able to refuse 14 of these, but, depending on reasons for refusal, were risking prosecution for negligence when they did so.
Controversial malaria drug concerns
In the UK, a Defence Select Committee has reported on an investigation into the use of the Malaria drug, Larium, by British troops. They concluded that it should be considered as “a drug of last resort”. In dispensing the drug to “large numbers of troops about to be deployed”, severe side-effect warnings highlighted by the manufacturer have been ignored. Roche has laid down “stringent conditions which must be met if it is to be prescribed safely”. The committee believes that the drug “with its significant risk profile”, is incompatible with “the duties required of military personnel on operations”. “Strong anecdotal evidence” suggests many service personnel “have been adversely affected by the use of Larium”.
New UK fracking approval
For the first time “since a ban was lifted in 2012”, A UK fracking application has been approved in North Yorkshire. A shale development company now has the go-ahead to “hydraulically fracture an existing well near the village of Kirby Misperton”. The decision has left campaign groups and environmentalists bitterly disappointed. Friends of the Earth's Yorkshire and Humber campaigner Simon Bowens called it "an absolute travesty" and said, “The risks to people’s health and the environment are unacceptable and we will fight on“. UK residents can sign the Friends of the Earth petition.
Romanian smart meter rollout
The go-ahead has been given in Romania for another 110,000 smart meters to be installed as “part of a pilot program” being rolled out by the local subsidiary of the Italian utility company Enel. 30,000 were rolled out last year, and the company has plans to “install similar meters for all of its 2.7 millions clients in Romania, in a move designed to pave the way for smart cities and infrastructure”. In January we raised further awareness about the ongoing global smart meter rollout, the dangers, and what action you can take. If you feel strongly about having a smart meter installed in your own, please take a moment to write to your energy company and say no. You can still exercise your voluntary right to say no to having a smart meter installed. Given the ramping up of advertising on British TV, the roll out is imminent.