Hey Sugar, Sugar, Stop Lying to Us

The NY Times on Monday published an article showing that the sugar industry and Big Food are up to their dirty tricks again. They reported that a medical journal, The Annals of Internal Medicine, published a review which attacked all criticism of sugar as a harmful part of our diets. The regular consumption of sugar, such as is common in our culture, causes diabetes, obesity, and heart disease as well as feeding the growth of cancer cells and harmful digestive bacteria in the gut.

The article (http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/19/well/eat/a-food-industry-study-tries-to-discredit-advice-about-sugar.html?_r=0) shows that the review was paid for by the International Life Sciences Institute, a so-called scientific group that is funded by the likes of Big Food and Big Agra companies such as Coca-Cola, General Mills, Hershey’s, Kellogg’s, Kraft Foods and Monsanto.  Who cares about health as long as profits are boosted?  Apparently a lot of people do, as the journal was flooded with angry messages from public health experts.


Hoof to Snout Movement

             While there are a growing number of people practicing vegetarian and vegan lifestyles, there is another tradition which goes back millennia, to the days before antibiotics and GMOs, before industrialized farming and food processing on the massive scale that we see today.  This tradition goes back to the hunter/gatherer days and is one which was practiced by indigenous cultures the world over.

All parts of the animal were used, from the skin to the bones and marrow.  One example is using bear brains to cure deer skins in use as clothing and shelter.  There are many other uses for skins and bones, from tools to musical instruments.  Animal fats are rich in nutrients and were commonly used for cooking into the 20th century.  We can see that bone broth is making a resurgence for its health benefits, and any cook knows that you get richer soup stocks by chopping the bones, be it for beef or chicken stocks.

The supermarket culture of today means there is no connection back to the animals which are raised for their meat.  Much is discarded.  The hoof to snout movement recreates that connections by making use of all parts of these noble animals.

Raising doubts about mammograms

One of the largest and longest-running studies of mammograms ever conducted has determined that the screening tests do not improve a woman’s chances for surviving breast cancer.  The findings, which run counter to widespread medical advice that women over 40 should undergo annual mammograms, also found that 20 percent of cancers detected via mammography and treated with often dangerous chemotherapy, surgery, or radiation therapies actually posed no threat to the women’s health.  This study “will make women uncomfortable, and they should be uncomfortable,” University of North Carolina professor of medicine Russell Harris tells The New York Times.  “The decision to have a mammogram should not be a slam dunk.”  Researchers tracked roughly 90,000 Canadian women between the ages of 40 and 50 for 25 years.  Some participants were randomly assigned to have both regular mammograms and breast exams by trained nurses, and others to have breast exams alone; their breast cancer death rates were the same.  The study is bound to trigger further debate, since its results are at odds with American Cancer Society data suggesting that mammograms help to reduce the death rate from breast cancer by at least 15 percent for women in their 40s and by at least 20 percent for older women.

(reprinted from The Week, February 28, 2014)

The Sugar Industry has shifted blame to fat

In a September article in the NY Times (http://www.nytimes.com/2016/09/13/well/eat/how-the-sugar-industry-shifted-blame-to-fat.html), evidence was shown that Big Sugar has pushed academic studies for more than 4 decades, namely a 1967 Harvard study in which 3 scientists were paid funds equaling about $50,000 in today’s dollars to play down any connection between sugar and heart disease.

Coca-Cola has also influenced recent studies on heart disease and obesity to shift the blame away from sugar.

It’s pretty obvious that a lot of our country’s current health problems, including diabetes, obesity, cancer, and heart disease, are a direct result of the huge amount of sugar in the average American diet.  The lo-fat craze also avoids identifying sugar as the problem.  We’ve seen it before with Big Tobacco, industry always cares for profits over the health of their customers. Please remember white flours (refined) act like sugar in the body.

GMOs have not increased output or reduced pesticide use

Here at Chamomille we recognize the dangers of GMOs and non-organic farming practices.  Here is a long term study by the NY Times that shows, in fact, that GMO crops paired with conventional farming techniques do nothing to boost output, and have not reduced the use of pesticides and herbicides.


Grass Fed and Grass Finished

We are proud to announce that Stewart Family Farms has been certified as being 100% grass fed.  With the popularity of grass fed beef rising many supermarkets have jumped, unethically, onto the bandwagon (surprise, surprise) in their beef labeling.  Many products are now being labelled grass fed although they are not grass finished.  This means that they graze for only part of the time but are still being fed GMO grains at other times, especially during the winter.

At Stewart Family Farm hay is grown throughout the summer and harvested so that the cows can continue to eat only grass.  They do no eat any grain which makes them certified grass finished.

If you are paying extra for grass fed beef make sure that it is also labelled not only grass fed but also grass finished, otherwise you are really being scammed.  In an economy where everyone is jumping on the “healthy bandwagon” ask yourself one question.  Can I really trust a store that also sells cigarettes to be really concerned about selling truly healthful products or is it only bottom line driven?

Sugar Coated


The new documentary “Sugar Coated” examines the efforts of the Sugar Industry to wage a PR war on any health and dietary regulations for sugar dating back to the 1970s.  Many national health problems such as obesity and diabetes are a direct result to the amount of sugar that is consumed.  If you look closely at the Nutritional Facts labels on the back of food products, sugar is noted as to the amount, but no daily recommended value is given.  This traces back to Big Sugar’s efforts, and this documentary explains how this was done, through the corruption of both academics and regulators.  This documentary is now available on Netflix and the trailer can be seen here:

Stop the FDA’s War on Supplements!

The FDA recently revised guidance rules for new supplements, and it is very bad news!  Some see it as an assault on the entire supplements industry by big pharma so that they can be shut down and replaced by entirely synthesized drugs provided by the pharmaceutical industry.

Here is more information on what is seriously troubling in the revised guidance rules:


And here is an action you can take to prevent these new guidance rules from coming into effect:


The Whole Story

Whole-food concentrates unleash a multivitamin’s full potential.

It is a piece of practical health advice that you’ve heard as long as you can remember: Take a multivitamin every day.  No one can argue with that.  According to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans issued in 2005, many people are deficient in key nutrients – especially calcium, magnesium and vitamins A, C and E – with older individuals, strict vegetarians and women of childbearing age running even higher deficiency risks.  In addition, regular multivitamin use has been associated with everything from reduced cataract risk to improved recovery  after gastric bypass (Ophthalmology 4/08, Obesity Surgery 2/08).

The catch with multivitamins is finding a product that will provide the greatest bang for your nutritional buck.  One of the biggest assets a high-quality multi can possess is the presence of whole-food concentrates.

The Cofactor Factor

It had been known for centuries that diets devoid of fresh foods could result in diseases such as scurvy, which is caused by a lack of vitamin C.  But it wasn’t until 1747 that James Lind, a ship’s surgeon in the British Navy, showed that fresh citrus helped protect sailors from scurvy while vitamin C, the specific “anti-scurvy” nutrient, was not isolated until the 1930s.

One of the researchers who discovered vitamin C – and won a Nobel Prize for doing so – was Hungarian physiologist Albert Szent-Györgyi.  A colleague asked him to treat a patient who showed signs of scurvy.  When Szent-Györgyi gave the person vitamin C in the form of fruit juice extract, the patient quickly recovered.  After purified vitamin C became available, Szent-Györgyi was asked to treat yet another scurvy patient.  The doctor expected even better results with pure C; to his surprise, the second patient didn’t respond as quickly as the first.

Obviously the juice extract had contained a special extra something that the purified vitamin didn’t.  Scientists now call such “somethings” cofactors, compounds that make vitamins more effective within the body.  These cofactors are missing from synthetically produced vitamins.  What’s more, researchers suspect that only a fraction of the cofactors found in whole foods have been discovered, which means there’s a lot of these substances that science doesn’t even know about yet.  The answer to this puzzle: Look for a multivitamin that contains whole-food concentrates to ensure you get all the cofactors those foods provide.

Superfruits to the Rescue

Some of the whole foods used in high-grade multivitamins have an extensive history of usage.  For example, barley grass juice is often used in detoxification programs because of its chlorophyll, the substance that helps plants generate energy.  Spirulina, a blue-green algae, has shown an ability to enhance immune function and reduce inflammation.

The hottest properties in the supplement world today, though, are superfruits such as açai, blueberry, cranberry, goji, mangosteen, noni and pomegranate.  These special fruits, packed with antioxidants galore, are just starting to yield their health-enhancing secrets in laboratories the world over.  But what researchers already know gives great promise: Pomegranate and blueberry have been studied for their protective effects on the brain, goji may ease fatigue and protect cholesterol against oxidation, and mangosteen has shown anti-cancer properties.

So heed that time-honored advice to take a daily multivitamin.  Just be sure it contains the whole-food concentrates those vitamins need to do the job right.

-Lisa James (from Energy Times, January 2009)