The Human Experiment lifts the veil on the shocking reality that thousands of untested chemicals are in our everyday products, our homes and inside of us. Simultaneously, the prevalence of many diseases continues to rise. From Oscar® winner Sean Penn and Emmy® winning journalists Dana Nachman and Don Hardy, The Human Experiment tells the personal stories of people who believe their lives have been affected by chemicals and takes viewers to the front lines as activists go head-to-head with the powerful and well-funded chemical industry. These activists bring to light a corrupt system that’s been hidden from consumers… until now.
Bring your dinner and a friend, grab a craft beverage from the bar in The Beet, and join us for a screening followed by a brief discussion!
President Trump recently backed out of the Paris Climate Agreement indicating a reversal of policy for the United States. Farmers across the corn-belt were surprisingly silent following the news. Chris Clayton, agricultural policy editor at the Progressive Farmer claims that many farmers do not want to hear about climate change.
Iowa State University polled over 5,000 corn-belt farmers and found that while 66% believed that climate change is occurring, only 41% believed that humans bore any part of the blame. This is especially concerning as agriculture produces 9% of all United States greenhouse gasses. Farms produce many forms of greenhouse gases including methane (meat farms), nitrous dioxide (fertilizer), and carbon dioxide (machinery). Some of the greenhouse gas production cannot be avoided, but steps can be taken to reduce the overall load on the environment.
The United States government tried to do exactly that. Under the Obama Administration, the Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) expanded the legal definition of “Waters of the United States” to incorporate smaller streams. The purpose of the rule change was to be able to better control sources of pollution coming from farms and other polluters. This rule directly applies to Farmers because it allowed the Federal Government to regulate their individual farms. Thus, many farmers and farm advocates fought against the measure and have since supported the rolling back of the regulation by President Trump.
The deregulation leaves the environment unprotected with very few answers. Iowa farmer, Dave Miller remarks, “”If you can help me deal with weather variability… …I can probably adapt to climate variability.” This indicates that we need to work towards a win-win solution, where our food, environment, and farmers all succeed. In my research there is one main organization that recently petitioned the EPA to enforce stricter environmental regulations to limit large scale farm pollution. Here is a link to their website Food and Water Watch
Preserving our environment for future generation is inherent and fundamental to Ellwood Thompson’s social mission. Please join us in this important cause.
Do you know what Rennet is? Do you know what Castoreum is? The former is commonly used in making cheeses and is an enzyme extracted from the inner mucosa of a young calve’s fourth stomach. The latter is literally beaver secretion. Both are found in food label ingredients. Did you know that Sodium Nitrate is not only a popular food preservative but is also used in smoke bombs and pyrotechnics?
Even though federal laws have improved to require certain levels of transparency in food labeling, let’s face it: we still can’t figure out and understand food labels because of complex ingredient names and misleading information. Below are several top smartphone apps and a website to help you understand food label ingredients:
Healthy Food – Smart choices in the grocery storeHealthy Food is an application created for people who want to check the composition of a product easily and intelligibly. Before you fill your shopping basket, take a photo of the product, recognize (OCR) its ingredients and check what’s in it. The scanned products will be saved in the history creating an unique product base.
Clueat –Food Indications This bar scanning app provides key information about your food including nutrition information and warnings at a glance. Check your food for GMO containment. The product database is crowdsourced so you can contribute in building it and making it the most accurate product database in the world.
Sift Food Labels Sift Food Labels has a bar scanner with a database of over 400, 000 products. It not only translates ingredients but identifies ingredients banned in other countries or which pose a risk to your health.
And for those who don’t use smartphones but have access to the internet:
Chemical Cuisine is a website page maintained by the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI). CSPI ranks the safety of food additives—from acetic acid to yellow prussiate of soda—in this definitive glossary of the chemicals used to flavor and preserve our foods
So empower yourself at the grocery store and use these apps to bring transparency to your food choices.
Fresh with the news that the EPA recently halted its testing for Monsanto’s weed killer ingredient (known as Glyphosate) in our food , taking a look at how much pesticides are in our food is more important than ever!
Every year the Environmental Working Group (EWG) creates a list of the top 12 types of “conventional” produce with the highest amount of pesticides and a list of the top 15 cleanest types of produce with the least amount of pesticides. The EWG uses pesticide residue testing data from the USDA and FDA and to create the lists.
Here are the lists for 2017:
The EWG’s Dirty Dozen below are fruits and vegetables listed from worst to best – lower numbers indicate more pesticides.
Sweet Bell Peppers
It is STRONGLY RECOMMENDED when buying any item in the Dirty Dozen above to buy ORGANIC. Even after washing these types of produce, they are likely to still have the most pesticide residue.
The EWG’s Clean Fifteen below lists fruits and vegetables with the least amount of pesticide residue with the lowest number indicating the least amount of pesticide residue.
Sweet Peas Frozen
Now of course it is recommended that you buy only organic produce all the time. But if you find yourself in a situation where you are traveling and don’t have access to organic produce, on a low budget, or you are trying to choose between buying local and organic, then the Clean Fifteen is the way to go.
The Clean Fifteen should be not too bad as long as you give them a very thorough washing.
Clearly, most produce on the Clean Fifteen have a protective outer layer that absorbs the pesticides and preserves the integrity of the food inside. This is mostly a good rule to follow but is not universal. “Conventional” apples, for instance, have a pretty thick peel but are now generally treated with a fungicide after they are harvested in order to keep the peel from breaking down.
It seems like the U.S. human population is one big guinea pig for pharmaceutical companies to test their drugs on without fully understanding a drug’s implications. It further seems that more risks are taken with the idea that any harmful effects on human are better dealt with lawsuits after the fact. Maybe that is an unfair perception. Perhaps. In all fairness, there is a constant debate about the Federal Drug Administration’s (FDA) approval process and whether or not the FDA’s approval process actually permits drugs that prove to provide greater benefit than risk to society.
However, there is one antibiotic that fell through the cracks of the FDA’s safety net (aka its approval process) and that antibiotic is causing serious irreparable harm to people. It is a class of antibiotics known as fluoroquinolones. The best known are Cipro (ciprofloxacin), Levaquin (levofloxacin) and Avelox (moxifloxacin) nearly every generic ending in “quin”, “oxacin,””ox,”. According to The New York Times, in 2010, Levaquin was the best-selling antibiotic in the United States. According to the FDA, which last year issued a warning for this class of drugs, fluoroquinolones are commonly prescribed for patients with acute sinusitis, acute bronchitis, and uncomplicated urinary tract infections.
Fluoroquinolone based drugs, according to one estimate, has been prescribed to millions of Americans.
Here are the dangers, some appearing to be irreversible, that have been documented by the use of fluoroquinolones:
*retnial detachment *acute kidney failure *central nervous system damage
*psychotic hallucinations *disfiguring rashes *decreased immune system
Project Green RVA | Project Green RVA is an organic-based lawn care company in Richmond, VA with a dedication to sustainability, community, and quality. They feel it is their duty to create a great looking lawn without harming our planet!
In a traditional lawn care program the grass is fed by synthetic fertilizers. Using synthetic fertilizers reduces the soil pH making nutrients unavailable to the plant. What these traditional programs are missing is the key to a healthy lawn is a healthy soil. With a healthy soil we reduce the amount of synthetic products needed to naturally achieve a healthy, lush lawn.
Join us in The Beet with green ambassadors Alex Kepner and Mark Tavares to learn about the 18 essential organic components that add and create a healthy soil. This brings Mother Nature back to the soil, creating a strong healthy plant. In return we get more drought and disease resistant plants with fewer weeds!
B vitamins are used to convert carbohydrates into energy for our bodies. We specifically need vitamin B12to make red blood cells, DNA, RNA, and nerves . Since our body does not produce B12 naturally, we rely on food sources and supplements to give our body this necessary energy.
Unfortunately, B12 is only found in animal products like beef, pork, dairy, eggs, fish, and shellfish. For plant-based people like myself, the best option is to receive the B12 through vitamin supplements.
Herbivores are not the only people at risk of B12 deficiency. Elderly people, those that have received weight-loss surgery, and people with conditions that affect food absorption like Crohn’s Disesase and Celiac are also prime at-risk candidates.
While some of people do not consume enough B12 in their diet, others cannot absorb enough. As our bodies age, a decrease of stomach acid production is relatively common. This can create problems, as stomach acid is needed to absorb the B12. Additionally, many of the commonly prescribed medications forheartburn reduce this acid production, therefore putting these people at risk for B12 deficiency too.
Newborns and infants to 1 year: 0.4-0.5 micrograms per day
Children 1 to 3: 0.9 micrograms per day
Children 4 to 8: 1.2 micrograms per day
Children 9 to 13: 1.8 micrograms per day
14 years and older: 2.4 micrograms per day
Pregnant women: 2.6 micrograms per day
Breastfeeding women: 2.8 micrograms per day
As far as dietary supplements are concerned there are many opinions about the proper dosage. For those that are at risk for being deficient, these doses are generally much higher than the figures above. One thing to understand is that our bodies can only absorb but so much at a time, so eventually the higher doses you take may end up becoming very expensive pee. Because of this, experts have not discovered if there is an unsafe amount of B12 to ingest.
In more extreme cases of deficiency your doctor can prescribe B12 injections for a period of time to bring your levels back to normal. Of course, if you want to know exactly how much you should be taking, ask your healthcare provider to recommend the proper dose for your body.
Another recommendation is to take Methyl-B12 (methylcobalamin) instead of cyanocobalamin (regular B12). Cyanocobalamin is chemically synthesized in laboratories and does not occur naturally in any living organisms. This is the most common form of B12 because it is the cheapest to produce. Methyl-B12 is what the cyanocobalamin breaks down into inside of your body. It costs a little more but it is definitely worth it. You can learn more about the difference here.
There are some advocates that say you should take B12 sublingually (under the tounge) in the form of dissolvable tablets or liquid B12. They claim that by being absorbed directly into the bloodstream under the tongue your body bypasses the potentially problematic absorption in the small intestine, thus ensuring that your body starts using the vitamin immediately.
Let’s just cut to the chase: factory farming is the single most organized system of animal cruelty and abuse devised by humans. And the moral dilemma for many consumers is that they love their meat so much that ignoring the inhumanity inflicted on such animals makes it easier to eat them for food.
Pigs are not only brutally beaten but in documented instances are butchered alive before they become ham and bacon.
These are not limited or unusual practices. Instead, they are well-documented and are considered as “good practices” by some in the factory farm industry.
However, factory farms don’t want you, the consumer, to know about such practices. Instead, like other government assaults on consumer transparency to know what we are eating, factory farms are trying to get our government to help them cover up these moral and serious problems with new so-called “Ag-Gag” Laws.
According to Rolling Stone, “Ag-Gag,” or farm protection, laws are a controversial wave of pro-agribusiness state-sponsored bills aimed at silencing animal-abuse whistle-blowers. Six states (Kansas, North Dakota, Montana, Missouri, Iowa and Utah) currently have Ag-Gag laws in place, and 11 more introduced similar farm-protection bills this year. Nearly all modeled themselves on portions of “The Animal and Ecological Terrorism Act” drafted by the conservative American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). Agribusiness employees contributed $91 million to candidates in last year’s elections, while lobbying by agriculture interests rose from $112 million in 2007 to $138 million in 2012.
The truth of behind the meat from factory farm is undeniable. It can only be suppressed as evidenced by “Ag-Gag” laws and the convenient desire of consumers to ignore such truth behind the meat on their plate. Only consumers can change this inhumanity with the choice of what they eat on their plates.
We’re honored to welcome Bionutrient Farming Association’s Founder & Executive Director Dan Kittredge to The Beet. Dan travels throughout the country, connecting with growers – farmers, gardeners, and those generally interested (we all eat food!) – to explain the process and benefits of growing crops with higher bionutrient levels.
In this introductory lecture, Dan will share with you the importance of bionutrient-rich foods and the exciting form of biological and energetic farming that integrates scientific principles in simple, common sense ways. These principles empower growers to significantly improve their crops. Explains Dan, “For me, it’s about looking at food and plants in a new way – providing the ideal environment for a plant’s genetic potential to manifest itself.”
About the Instructor
Dan is the Founder and Executive Director of the Bionutrient Food Association. Raised by parents who are prominent leaders in the organic food movement, Dan has been an organic farmer since childhood. His experience managing organic farms and developing sustainable agriculture techniques has connected him to farmers in Central America, Russia, India and the U.S.
Learn more about Dan and view his grower profile here.
FREE!(It may be free but seating is limited to 45 so please register in advance)
Mark S. Smith, DC, DABCN has been in practice for 40 years. He is a Board Certified Chiropractic Neurologist and practitioner of Functional Medicine with a special interest in nutrition and neurologic disorders. His passion is to find the underlying health issues that may be causing the condition rather than simply masking the problems. While controlling symptoms is important, finding out why you have them is even more fundamental to long term health improvement. Thus, emphasis is on the body as an integrated system and the mind-body-spirit connection. This holistic and integrated approach is at the heart of brain health optimization and restoration.
There are many beliefs, rumors, stigmas, and sources of misinformation around anxiety and depression. But there is one thing that we can agree upon: it is a modern day health epidemic. Through Dr. Smith’s talk, you’ll learn how depression and anxiety can actually be a form of physical illness that results in brain inflammation and functional alterations in the brain’s ability to work correctly, which can then manifest as myriad of brain symptoms. Join us to learn the causes of brain inflammation and what to do about it!