5G protest day
Golden rice approval
US obesity rates set to soar
Organic farming futureproofs soil
Roadmap to insect recovery
UK eating disorder hospital admissions rise
UK GP numbers crisis
Bayer/Monsanto calls in big guns
If you have concerns about the safety of 5G, you can join a global movement on Saturday 25th January 2020 to tell officials to ‘Stop 5G’. Citizens concerned about the impact of 5G and associated technologies on the health of people, the environment and the planet will come together as part of the first Global Day of Protest to oppose one of the largest ever uncontrolled experiments the world has seen to date. As part of the run up to the day, the 5G Space Appeal, containing over 3,300 pages of signatures, will be delivered to governments around the world. Join the protest and become a 5G Activist. It’s up to us, as individuals working together, to stand up and have our voices heard before it’s too late.
Golden rice receives approval
After years of seeking official approval, Golden Rice has finally been sanctioned by the Philippine government. The approval has come through despite concerns over the degradation of the vitamin A content during storage, price and GM health considerations. Rather than promoting biodiversity through the cultivation of a wide range of plant foods, this approval reinforces the use of large-scale monocultures that produce nutritionally inadequate foods. The much-hyped nutritional benefits of Golden Rice are unlikely to materialise leaving the health of those who most need it at continued risk, but company profits better off.
Obesity rates set to soar
A new study published in the New England Journal of Medicine projects nearly half of all US citizens will be obese by 2030. An epidemic that’s predicted to cost the US economy up to $50 billion per year to deal with its impact along with associated chronic diseases. Meanwhile in the UK NHS figures have revealed that half of UK adults over the age of 45 are at increased, high or very high risk of developing chronic disease due to the size of their waistlines. Over half of those aged 45 to 54, were found to have a waist size in excess of 34 inches. Prioritising health creation to prevent disease development has to be our number one healthcare focus for the 2020 decade.
Organic farming futureproofs soil health
Organic farming practices have lasting benefits for soil health, weed management, soil organisms and crop yields. Published in Agricultural Systems, this new study reinforces the benefits of organic farming for soil health over industrial farming practices that deplete soils of microorganisms and nutrients. We cannot create health without protecting the health of our soils. Soil is a critical component of most ecosystems and is vitally important to the health of plants and food chain beyond, including the humans who eat them.
Roadmap to insect recovery
A coalition of international scientists publishing in Nature has set out a global roadmap in an effort to reverse the global collapse of insect and arthropod populations ‘because insects are key to our own survival’. Essential for the health and wellbeing of both human food production systems and the environment, arthropod populations (which includes insects) have experienced dramatic and serious declines in recent years. The roadmap prioritises immediate ‘no-regret’ solutions, including taking aggressive steps to reduce climate change and a return to agroecological farming methods to reduce the use of synthetic pesticides. The roadmap also sets out mid-term and long-term actions.
UK hospital admissions for eating disorders rising
Figures from the UK’s NHS highlight a rise in hospital admissions for those suffering from eating disorders. Rising by 37% over the last two years, a quarter of those admitted were children under the age of 18, most commonly girls aged between 13-15. Increasing interest in ‘planet-friendly’ diets amongst young people has the potential to put them at risk of nutrient deficiencies, which can be a factor in the development of eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa.
UK GP numbers reach crisis point
New figures from the UK’s Trade Union Congress show the number of GPs in the UK has dropped to crisis levels despite continued government promises to increase numbers. The report highlights a drop of nearly 1,000 GPs since 2015 despite continued increases in demand as levels of chronic disease rise unabated. The North East region has seen the biggest percentage drop in GP numbers, whilst the South East has the highest number of vacancies. In our view, throwing more money into finding more doctors is not a solution. Instead, more needs to be done to educate and empower citizens to become willing participants in their own healthcare journey to reduce demand for GP appointments, as well as recognise that other healthcare professionals can also act as health guides.
Bayer calls in the big guns
Attempts to tell the truth about Bayer/Monsanto’s Roundup has taken a sinister turn as the US government steps into the arena over the Hardeman v Monsanto case to support Bayer/Monsanto efforts to overturn the original judgement. In a friend of the court brief, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Justice Department support Bayer’s argument that it couldn’t put a warning label on Roundup as such a claim would contradict the EPA’s stance that glyphosate doesn’t cause cancer. The move further reinforces how deeply embedded cronyism is between governments and big business, along with a complete lack of accountability and regard for the health of citizens harmed by such products.