Food as Medicine
The biggest issue that we should be facing today as a society is nutrition and yet the food industry does not consider health, and the health industry does not consider food.
Meanwhile society is getting fatter and sicker from the food supply while agribusiness is getting richer providing low quality food for ‘whatever the market will bear’ and in the process creating a new population to be exploited by the medical profession/pharmaceutic industry, which coincidentally increases business for the chemical industry which is controlling both. The same chemical industry that, it would seem, is being run by the same NAZI’s who fled Germany after WWIl.
It was not only Bayer, who is now taking over Monsanto, that had its senior personnel charged and convicted of war crimes for assisting the Nazi’s in building and operating the death camps in Germany, but the IG Farber Cartel consisting of Bayer, BASF and Hoechst as well as other German chemical companies executives that began to ‘migrate’ to the US after WWll as part of ‘Operation Paperclip’. Several years later 24 IG Farber executives were convicted at the Nuremburg War Crime Tribunal of mass murder and slavery among other crimes. In less than 7 years all were released and from 1950 to 1980 all three (Bayer, BASF and Hoechst Corp) had convicted mass murderers as Chairman of the Board. Currently all are sending millions (billions?) to Washington to influence the FDA.
The only White House Conference on Nutrition ever held was in 1969. At that time school lunch programs, child nutrition and nutrition education were improved, and WIC (Women, Infant and Children) programs were established to provide greater access to food assistance, but since that time much has changed and these programs have been hijacked by big business which provides the cheapest mass produced food with no consideration of the nutritional content or toxic byproducts in the food.
Poor nutrition may be the leading cause of deaths and disabilities in this country yet it has not even been discussed in the current election along with immigration, health care, education, foreign policy, etc. Candidates at all levels of government should be made aware of the potential impact of this issue and encouraged to take stands on the issues on the side of the American people and not the industrial criminals (polluters) with ‘big pockets’. Unfortunately it would seem that the majority of politicians are ‘in the pocket’ of the industrial polluters. While genetic modification may be defended for some reasons, when the genetic modifications are specifically to make the plants tolerant of toxic herbicides that will reside in the structure of the plant and be absorbed along with the nutrients and clearly having a detrimental effect on the health of the population that consumes these plants, there is no defense. Some countries have had the wisdom to ban these practices despite the pressure of ‘big business’. Other countries see the folly of their ways as farmers commit suicide on a massive scale (often by eating these herbicides!) after falling victim to Monsanto’s practices. In the good old USA Monsanto owns the CDC and FDA (1, 2) as well as the politicians that write the laws, to the detriment of the people. If this policy is not banned outright, at the very least consumers have a right to know what is in their food and medicine and what it is doing to their health.
Not only is our food supply effecting our health, but also the health of the planet, causing 90% of tropical deforestation, draining 70% of our water supply, straining our oceans and causing as much green house emissions as all the worlds transportation (cars, trucks, buses, plains, trains and ships) combined.
All of of this contributing to the problem of pollution rather than working toward solving it. If the problem of soil pollution is solved, and our oceans ‘cleaned up’, our oceans alone could create enough food to feed the planet without turning ‘good land’ into ‘toxic wastelands’, otherwise known as factory farms. The planet itself is being turned into a dumping ground for toxic chemicals. This needs to not only be stopped, but turned around so that we at least begin cleaning it up.
We spend $3 trillion dollars per year on ‘healthcare’, five times more than all our military spending’s This could be drastically reduced by addressing nutrition in our health care system. Changing ‘access’ to health care, drug development and personalized medicine will not reduce the billions of dollars spent on healthcare to treat preventable or curable diseases as much as establishing better lifestyles, particularly better sources of nutrition and dietary habits and reducing pollution.
Congress’ sequestration battle in 2013 threatening to shut down the government over $85 billion dollars. Through diet and lifestyle we could reduce or eliminate the cost of preventable conditions including diabetes, heart disease,, cancer and dementia by in the neighborhood of $1 trillion dollars per year at least. Considering the potential benefits nutrition should be a bipartisan priority.
While first lady Michelle Obama tried to establish nutritional awareness with her organic garden her message has been shifted to ‘let’s move’, stressing exercise instead of nutrition. It now appears this shift resulted from pressure from the food industry. (I’m sure the Coca-Cola company is proud of this shift). The president’s policies don’t necessarily reflect a concern for nutrition, and where are the questions to the presidential candidates regarding nutrition and health? A new emphasis on food and nutrition is needed to address such aspects as health, hunger, medical care, jobs, the economy and sustainability. We need to address the toxicity we are inflicting on our land and water which threatens our health. Just cleaning up our oceans would allow ocean life to flourish potentially allowing the ocean alone to provide enough food to sustain the world’s population.
Once this problem is addressed, by learning from the past we could accomplish in 10 years what took 50 years to address in the tobacco industry, 70 years to address in car safety and 100 years to address in water and sanitation, but first we need to start the conversation and make this a major issue on the table. We need to recognize the need for a shift in major industries that are currently acting to maximize profits while minimizing the nutritional quality of the food we eat, and find ways to develop new industries and jobs designed to provide maximum nutrition cost effectively. *
*inspired by Tufts Health & Nutrition Newsletter (Sept 2016) editorial by Dariush Mozaffarian