Glyphosate

For almost two years now, Functional Formularies’ products Liquid Hope and Nourish have been tested for glyphosate contamination.  While we are pleased that our products have tested free of this insidious chemical, we are also disappointed that no other enteral formula company has shown interest in testing and that there is not a greater effort to reduce exposure to consumers.  We have argued since the beginning of our small company that the critically ill deserve the same right to clean, healthy food as the rest of the population.  For those challenged with health conditions, glyphosate exposure is unacceptable to us.

Why this is so important?

This week (May 16th, 2018) the results of another animal study supported previous findings on the microbiome-disruption caused by glyphosate consumption, this time at very low exposure levels (https://glyphosatestudy.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/MICROBIOME-GLY-PILOT-IN-PRESS-8-5-1.pdf)

Additionally, the investigators led by Daniele Mandrioli PhD, went further and extended the study design to allow for observations of potential influences on offspring health parameters.  It was demonstrated that low level glyphosate exposure also influenced reproductive health and sexual development in rats.

Glyphosate, the herbicidal ingredient in Round UP®, is now the most widely used agrichemical in the history of the world.  No chemical has been applied to the Earth’s surface in greater quantity.  It has been shown that nearly every person ever tested has glyphosate within their body.  Exposure sources range from environmental (ground and/or drinking water contamination) to dietary consumption from treated grains, cereal products, and soybean-containing foods and animal feeds.

Independent testing on behalf of consumer rights organizations has shown that almost every common breakfast cereal you can find on a grocery store shelf contained significant amounts of the herbicide. Some of the levels, such as with General Mills Cheerios, were at levels 1.5X what is allowed in US drinking water (700 ppb).   Glyphosate residues are everywhere and no pesticide or herbicide has ever been used so widely or globally: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27752438

What does this mean for our health and our children’s health? Prior animal studies (see references listed at the end of this report) indicate that we are altering human biochemistry and that glyphosate exposure promotes various disease processes.

Let’s ask ourselves some critical questions:

First, how long did it take for action with DDT or BPA after years of research showed significant findings that both were extremely detrimental to reproductive health and sexual development?

Second, why has Europe and the World Health Organization classified glyphosate as a probable carcinogen but the US deems it safe, even at very high exposure levels?

No internal review board for any institution will allow a human intervention trial with glyphosate since it has already been classified as a carcinogen by both the IARC and the WHO.  Therefore, the argument used by the manufacturers of glyphosate that we don’t have enough human evidence will persist indefinitely.  In animals however, glyphosate has demonstrated endocrine disrupting effects with cellular exposure increasing estrogen-positive breast cancer development: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23756170

Other studies have shown deleterious effects to mammalian reproductive health and the survival of offspring: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27486271

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27463640

In 2013, a German population was assessed for glyphosate exposure. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27838355

Glyphosate levels found in the blood and urine of German citizens, revealing high levels in comparison to what is allowed in German drinking water, generated public outcry and new restrictions on its use.   A follow up assessment demonstrated significant reductions in exposure with a change in agricultural policy.  Experts suggest that this reduction in glyphosate exposure may be because there is less “browning” or crop-desiccation in the field.  Some suggest that Germans may just be more aware than they were prior to 2013.

Yet at the same time here in the US, the FDA raised acceptable limits: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/carey-gillam/fda-suspends-glyphosate-r_b_12913458.html

If we wait for these governing groups to change policy, we may be waiting a very long time.  A very long time with millions of children exposed to a very toxic chemical.  Let’s demand that the food industry be required to test for glyphosate.  And let’s demand that other foods get tested.  GMO-free, GMO-verified, and to a lesser extent, even the words certified organic, mean very little when it comes to glyphosate levels in our food.  Foods must be glyphosate-tested to prove that they are free of this chronic disease causing herbicide.

~ John Bagnulo MPH, PhD.