Sunday, November 24, 2002

I don't know about you, but I am getting pretty sick and darn tired of what I'm going to call "organic scamming." It seems to grow worse with every passing week. The deeper that you look, the wider the scamming turns out to be. Why don't you hear about this organic scamming more frequently? Think about the following idea for a momemt.

As a personal experiment, take a look at the advertisements in the magazines that you look to for "health" information. What kinds of products are being advertised? Do you see large, full-page ads for small body care companies in all of these magazines every month? No, you won't see this happening. Why not? Here's why: the advertising "space" for a one page ad, in just one magazine for just ONE isssue costs between $9000 to $20,000 and upwards, on average. (this figure does not include photographer and ad design costs) So, to run an ad in twelve issues of just one magazine, it would cost a company $108,000 to $240,000 dollars per magazine. If ads are run in ten different magazines in the course of one year, we're now talking about $2.4 million dollars in advertising costs from just one manufacturer. Who has this amount of capital in their advertising budget? Small, organic farms and body care producers don't have these kinds of funds available.

If a magazine has, say, 150 pages and 60% of those pages (90 pages) are advertising, we're now looking at revenues of approximately $1.6 million dollars per month and upwards of $20 million dollars per year. (It is important to note that, in the publishing world, "health" types of magazines are considered a "niche" market and their ad space costs can be, perhaps, half of what a mass-market's ad space might cost.) Make no mistake though, my friend, this is still big business.

If a publication is receiving these kinds of revenues, how likely is it, for example, that they are going to publish serious, investigative articles on detrimental health effects of synthetic chemicals that may be found in their advertiser's products? Not very likely at all, I'm afraid. Think about it, when was the last time that you saw information such as what you might find in our newsletter, Exposure, in any of your health magazines? Indeed. How likely is it that the magazines would want to report on truly unique and superior products (at the risk of offending their advertisers, making them look less healthy)? Some folks might not want to believe that this type of censorship goes on, but be assured, the advertisers, ultimately, with the very large threat of pulling their advertising dollars from the magazines, call the shots regarding what is revealed to the public. I have seen, and have in my possession, an ad in which one manufacturer and one publisher actually publicize their alliance! Boy! Who owns whom? It's all one big blur.

So, in response to the gross lack of information NOT being made available by the established, mainstream media, here is our newsletter of truths for your review. For your information, this newsletter is totally self-funded. We do not accept advertising funding from outside corporations. Gee, do you think you'll see any reporting of our work in those healthy publications?

A few weeks ago we reported that the USDA had conducted a scientific study on grapefruit seed (also called citrus seed extract) extracts (GSE) (synthetic quaternary ammonium compounds) and determined that the majority of extracts that they studied had high levels of the chemical BENZETHONIUM CHLORIDE. read the USDA summary on grapefruit seed extracts. Now, we'd like to present you with more reports from around globe on the chemical benzethonium chloride. (For our original postings on GSE use your browser's "find" command to search for other entries of "grapefruit seed extract" further down on this page)

The Scientific Committee on Cosmetic Products and Non-food Products (SCCNFP) stated in their final report for the European Union on Benzethonium chloride, dated 27 February 2002, that "The data provided in the submitted dossier does not support the requested use of Benzethonium chloride as a preservative in leave-on (body care) products." Here are a few other excerpts from various tests conducted in the SCCNFP study: 1) "The high-dose produced growth depression, increased irritability, respiratory signs in the parents and decreased viability and body weight of pups at birth." 2) "In a teratogenicity study...the high-dose group showed decreased maternal body weight and an increased number of smaller pups. An increased incidence of skeletal variants occurred in all treated groups."

The National Toxicology Program of the National Institutes of Health reported that "benzethonium chloride is used as an antiinfective, in veterinary medicine as a topical antiseptic, and as a cationic detergent. Cationic detergents are used agriculturally in herbicides and in antiseptics, spermicides, astringents, germicides, disinfectants, and preservatives. Hypersensitivity reactions have been reported in twelve of forty-two individuals treated with a topical preparation containing benzethonium chloride"

The Swiss Toxicological Information Centre of Basle, Switzerland reports that "Benzethonium chloride is a disinfectant (quaternary ammonium compound, cationic detergent) contained mainly in cleansing agents but also in locally active medications (against sore throat, spermicides). Cationic detergents are more toxic than other detergents. Toxicity of concentrated solutions (more than 5-10%) is based upon their caustic action and upon their systemic toxic effects. Symptoms after dermal application of a concentrated solution are irritation, dermatitis, and bullous lesions. Contamination of the eye may lead from mild discomfort to corneal lesions depending on the concentration. Oral application of concentrated solutions leads to caustic burns of the oral and esophageal mucosa, nausea, emesis, abdominal pain, diarrhea, pulmonary edema, hypotension, metabolic acidosis, and depression of the central nervous system (sleepiness to coma), seizures, and death. Grapefruit seed extracts containing benzethonium chloride in concentrations of 7-11% represent a major health risk if larger amounts of a concentrated solution are ingested (i.e. by mouthful). Exposure of the skin or the eye may cause toxic symptoms. The Swiss Toxicological Information Centre discourages consumers from administration of these extracts unless it is known which of them are containing benzethonium chloride and what the concentrations are."

One manufacturer of grapefruit seed extract, GSE, has stated that its extract contains compounds similar to the toxic benzethonium chloride and that their compounds can be mistaken for the toxic compounds. However you choose to look at the situation, grapefruit seed extract IS still, undisputably, a synthetic compound, and it is NOT approved for organic foods and, because it is distributed by several different companies to, perhaps, hundreds of manufacturers, how do you know what is in the grapefruit seed extract that is in so many of your "natural" and "organic" body care products?

Why question the safety of ingredients in body care products that you rub on your skin? Scientists at Stanford University reported in 1999 that they found that they could deliver an effective dose of a vaccine in a shower with one shampooing. How so? Through the hair follicles! The vaccine in the study was absorbed into the body through the hair follicles on unshaven, unbroken skin. Dr. Stephen Johnston, director of the Center for Biomedical Inventions at the University of Texas said "This work (at Stanford) says that we've been administering vaccines in the wrong place. Soaking it into the skin is a lot simpler (and less painful)."

If you can absorb an effective dose of a vaccine simply by having it come into contact with your skin, how much of the toxic synthetics in your body and hair care products are you absorbing through your skin--feeding to your organs and brain every day? How can you be the healthiest that you can be if your body is constantly being bombarded by a wide array of man-made petro and oleochemicals and their processing residues?

When there is big business and big money to be made, you must look at "health" claims and claims of "naturalness" and "organic" with a magnifying glass and the bigger the magnifying glass, the better. It's for your own good--you have to watch out for yourself. So, if you feel that you can't control the air outside your home, don't fret about it too much. According to the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), your biggest toxic air pollution exposure comes from the air in your own home, and we now know that your other major exposures are from the products that you use to clean your body and your home. These are the simple decisions that you make every day, decisions about the things in your personal environment. Remember, you can control what you rub on and put in your body. Are synthetic chemicals worth the risk to you? Is it really worth the potential compromise to your future health and longevity to save a few dollars today when you buy synthetic body care products? I don't think that compromising one's health is a good idea, do you?

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