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Awareness

The 10 Most Popular Prescription Drugs & Their Potential Side Effects

Big Pharma often prioritizes profit over people’s health, and many doctors and pharmaceutical companies push drugs without actually discussing the potential side effects.

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Modern medicine really loves to implement the band-aid effect; doctors often just prescribe drugs to mitigate the systems of a health problem rather than focusing on curing the underlying issue. People with high cholesterol are prescribed Statins rather than looking at their diets, anxiety sufferers are handed pills rather than delving into why they have anxiety in the first place, and the list goes on and on.

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Though I see this system as being flawed, if you don’t see any holes within it, I ask you: Do you actually know what the potential side effects of these drugs are? Many people are completely unaware of the potential hazardous effects of numerous prescription drugs because their doctors don’t tell them and they don’t think to ask. I know I experienced this before I started questioning my doctors and the medical industry.

It’s completely understandable; these are the people we’re expected to trust with our lives, so why would we second guess their recommendations? Well, it’s not your doctor who formulates the prescriptions, it’s Big Pharma companies, and their number one goal is to profit. The problem is, Big Pharma only profits if you’re sick: not healthy, not dead, just in between.

To give you a greater picture of some of the potential dangers common drugs pose, I’ve put together a list of the side effects from the 10 most popular prescription pills in the U.S.

1. Vicodin, Norco, Xodol (Hydrocodone/Acetaminophen) 

This particular drug is used to treat pain, and is classified as an opioid. There’s a massive opioid epidemic plaguing the U.S. right now, which is being fuelled by both pharmaceutical companies and the U.S. government. Many consider the U.S. government to be one of the biggest drug dealers of opium and heroin in the world, a problem you can read more about in our CE articles here and here.

We see more and more overdoses and addictions related to these drugs occurring each year, and it all stems from Big Pharma and doctors overprescribing medication and understating the side effects and addictive tendencies. This issue isn’t new, however; it actually started decades ago.

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“[The marketing effort for opioid sales] was a promotional campaign unlike we have ever really seen,” explains Dr. Andrew Kolodny, the Chief Medical Officer for the Phoenix House treatment centers and co-founder of Physicians for Responsible Opioid Prescribing. “Drug reps were going to family care doctors, and insisting that OxyContin had no real risks—only benefits. What they were selling was the idea that pain was a disease, and not a symptom.”

So, what are the risks associated with opioids? Vicodin can cause short-term effects such as nausea, constipation, slowed breathing, dizziness, impaired judgement, confusion, extreme drowsiness, and loss of consciousness. Long-term effects include liver toxicity, heightened pain, memory issues, anxiety, and increased chance of injuries, not to mention that this drug is highly addictive; in fact, more than 5 million Americans abuse Vicodin.

The irony is that many people take the drug for pain, but in reality it can increase your sensitivity to pain, worsen your pain tolerance over time, and ultimately lead to more pain. Keep in mind that more pain = more drugs needed = more money for Big Pharma companies. See the pattern emerging here?

Recommended Book: The Big Pharma Conspiracy: The Drugging Of America For Fast Profits

2. Synthroid, Levoxyl, Unithroid (Levothyroxine) 

These drugs are used to treat hypothyroidism. Some of their side effects include: hair loss, headaches, insomnia, irritability, fever, hot flashes, heart palpitations, irregular menstruation, and appetite and weight changes. It’s ironic that many of these symptoms are actually the exact same as the symptoms caused by hypothyroidism in the first place (weight gain, menstruation issues, hair loss, and more). So, people are taking a drug to avoid these issues yet risk experiencing or exacerbating them by doing so.

3. Delasone, Sterapred (Prednisone)

These drugs are used to treat arthritis. Prednisone is actually a steroid, so it can weaken your immune system and increase risk of infections. Common side effects include aggression, visual impairment, dizziness, irregular heartbeat/heart palpitations, headaches, and mood swings.

Prednisone can cause osteoporosis and many issues if you’re taking it while pregnant, including birth defects and nursing problems. Long-term usage can lead to skin issues, change in shape/location of body fat, increased acne, menstrual irregularity, and reduced sex drive.

4. Amoxil (Amoxicillin)

This drug is a penicillin antibiotic. When it comes to antibiotics, approximately 30% of oral antibiotics prescribed are completely unnecessary. There are also many all-natural antibiotics you can take instead, which you can learn more about here.

Potential side effects of Amoxil include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach issues, vaginal itching, headaches, rashes, swollen tongue, colitis, seizures, hives, and jaundice.

5. Neurontin (Gabapentin)

This drug is used to treat seizures and nerve pain. Side effects include dizziness, drowsiness, nausea, diarrhea, blurred vision, headaches, more seizures, swollen glands, fevers, rashes, numbness, pain, jaundice, chest pain, irregular heart beat, confusion, swelling, weight gain, difficulty breathing, and rapid back and forth movement of your eyes. Please note that this drug, which is used to treat seizures, can actually cause more seizures.

6. Prinivil, Zestril (Lisinopril)

This drug is used to treat hypertension and is commonly taken by people with heart problems. Side effects include coughing, drowsiness, depression, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, rashes, weight gain, fever, body chills, psoriasis, chest pain, heart palpitations, and slowed heart rate.

7. Lipitor (Atorvastatin)

This drug is classified as a Statin, a type of drug commonly used by patients with high blood pressure or heart disease. A new study conducted by Penn State College found a correlation between use of Statins and increased risk of Parkinson’s disease, which you can read more about in our CE article here. Statins are heavily marketed in North America, which is a huge reason why they’re so popular, and much of the advertising is false and/or misleading.

For example, another study, published in Expert Review of Clinical Pharmacologyrevealed that, despite Statin drugs being marketed for their ability to decrease the artery disease called atherosclerosis, they may actually stimulate it and cause heart failure.

Side effects of Lipitor specifically include nausea, diarrhea, muscle pain, confusing, memory issues, fevers, weight gain, blurred vision, jaundice, and more.

8. Glucophage (Metformin)

This drug is used to treat type 2 diabetes. Side effects include headaches, muscle pain, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain, weight gain, fevers, chills, numbness, difficulty breathing, dizziness, and irregular heartbeat.

9. Zofran (Ondansetron)

This drug is designed to treat nausea and prevent vomiting. In some cases, chemotherapy patients and pregnant women experiencing “morning sickness” will take this drug in order to decrease nausea. The FDA actually issued a warning regarding the use of this drug, stating that one dose “may affect the electrical activity of the heart (QT interval prolongation), which could pre-dispose patients to develop an abnormal and potentially fatal heart rhythm known as Torsades de Pointes.”

Side effects of Zofran include headaches, constipation, diarrhea, dizziness, rashes (which can be serious and cause blisters/pealing), temporary visual impairment, seizures, chest pain, loss of consciousness, and difficulty breathing, swallowing, and/or talking.

10. Motrin (Ibuprofen)

A common anti-inflammatory drug taken for pain relief, ibuprofen has now been linked to heart problems, as long-term use can increase risk of a major vascular event (heart attack, stroke, or dying from cardiovascular disease) by approximately a third.

“This means that for every 1,000 people with an average risk of heart disease who take high-dose diclofenac or ibuprofen for a year, about three extra would have an avoidable heart attack, of which one would be fatal,” the researchers said. Read more in our CE article here.

There are numerous potential risks of taking Motrin that range from nausea and heartburn to issues as serious as comas and seizures. More common side effects include bloating, shortness of breath, nausea, indigestion, and swelling (which is ironic given that it’s supposed to be anti-inflammatory).

Final Thoughts 

It’s interesting to note that many of these drugs cause diarrhea and vomiting, which means your body is literally forcing itself to expel its contents. Do you really think that taking drugs that can cause your body to go into any sort of distress is good for it?

Many pharmaceuticals may treat one symptom, but they can create a multitude of other problems in the process. I’m not saying don’t ever resort to them — that’s between you and your doctors — but I am suggesting that you do your own research. There are natural alternatives to many pharmaceutical drugs.

Perhaps try going to a natural health practitioner such as a naturopath. At the end of the day, you choose what goes into your body, so you control a large part of your health. Make informed decisions.

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Awareness

Box Top$ For Education Is Not Supporting Education (Here’s Why)

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    The Box Top$ For Education program has kicked off yet again with messaging to suggest it helps schools across the country. However, when you go beyond the surface it's far from what it seems and promotes itself as.

  • Reflect On:

    What labels and initiatives do you let impact your behavior as a consumer?

National Box Tops for Education Week kicks off coast-to-coast fundraising.  For over 20 years, the Box Tops for Education program has provided families a way to help raise money for their school. The program was created to “help support education and benefit American schools” by providing a small amount of money from each item purchased. Does this program truly benefit education and support learning?

Who’s Really Benefitting?

General Mills, Inc., an American multi-billion-dollar multinational manufacturer, and marketer of branded consumer food is genuinely the benefactor. Giving a school 10 cents for every item bought is a drop in the bucket compared to the amount of money General Mills earns at the expense of our health. At first glance, it appears this company has been extremely generous, donating $719,000,000 in the last 20 years. If you do the math and divide each year’s totals by the 80,000 plus schools in the United States, it equates to a whopping $449 per school. As one can see, General Mills has done a fantastic marketing job, encouraging our kids to eat their garbage. Sure, we can buy school supplies, Kleenex tissues, and a few toxic cleaning products on the list, but what’s the fun in that.

Crappy, Overly-Processed “Food-Like” Products Do Not Support Learning

Diet and nutrition deeply affect a child’s learning ability. Sadly the qualifying products on the Box Top list including Hamburger Helper, Lucky Charms, Pillsbury Toaster Strudel, Fruit Roll-Ups, and alike do not achieve this.

Did You Know? The ingredient list for strawberry fruit roll-ups doesn’t include strawberries!

Instead, it contains genetically modified corn syrup and dextrose (refined sugar derived from GM corn, and artificial food dyes – red 40, yellow 5&6, blue 1 (derived from coal tar and petroleum).

Nutrient-rich homemade meals are being replaced with boxed, frozen, and canned foods due to higher prices of healthy food, our hectic lifestyles, and brainwashing tactics, such TV ads and campaigns such as the Box Top program.

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The Truth

Processed food lacks essential whole food nutrients the brain needs to function correctly. They contain ingredients such as genetically modified corn syrup, refined sugar, synthetic salt, unhealthy fats, artificial colors and flavors, chemical preservatives, and unrevealed heavy metals and pesticides. All of these ingredients work against a child’s ability to learn. 

Pesticides and antibiotics found in food today are detrimental to our healthy gut microbiota which are essential to brain function and development. Both are designed to kill bugs. So, we are destroying our gut bugs that help regulate and keep our immune systems strong and healthy to support our brain.

Studies have also shown that the high sugar content of processed foods may contribute to diabetes, which can affect a student’s learning in many ways. Blood sugar levels can affect cognitive functioning and school performance. According to many scientific journals and newsletters from prestigious universities like Harvard Medical School, processed food consumption are also linked to neurodevelopmental disorders, sleep problems, hyperactivity, attention; and mood symptoms including depression and anxiety.

Boxed foods are also linked to other severe health issues like obesity and high blood pressure. Two extensive European studies published by BMJ in May 2019 links processed foods with a range of health risks, including cardiovascular death. Another scientific study conducted by scientists from Yale University in the U.S. and the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg in Germany indicated that “excess refined salt used in fast-food restaurants and the over-consumption of sodium from other processed foods may be one of the environmental factors driving the increased incidence of autoimmune diseases.”  Processed foods can also trigger cancer.  The researchers warn that the rapidly increasing consumption of ultra-processed foods “may drive an increasing burden of cancer in the next decades.”

Don’t Be A Victim To The Marketing Ploy

We are poisoning ourselves, and the consequences are starting to show with the incredible rise of neurodevelopmental, mental illness, and diseases like cancer, asthma, diabetes, and many autoimmune disorders. So, let’s forgo the Box Top’s and find healthier and more productive ways to raise money for our schools. These big ag companies have no interest in changing current practices no matter how sick they’re making all of us. Or how many medications we are all dependent on. These companies are generating trillions of dollars of their products, and creating customers for life. General Mills and most food companies are owned by Monsanto/Bayer. They are adhering to FDA guidelines and are not violating any federal laws because they fund the FDA (Industry User Fees).

Fighting big lobbyist groups can seem like an impossibility for most of us, so we need to take our power back by voting with our dollar. We must refuse to purchase products with barcodes that are making 10 cents for our schools. And choose healthy instead.


Looking to help your family overcome ADHD, autism, anxiety and more without medication? Get access to download my FREE eBook ‘Every Parent’s Starter Kit to a Healthy Family’ by signing up HERE.

 

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Awareness

Why Vegan and not Vegetarian? Vietnamese Monk Thich Nhat Hanh Answers The Question

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Vietnamese Monk Thich Nhat Hanh explains why he chooses not to consume any meat or dairy products, and points towards the overwhelmingly cruel food industry.

  • Reflect On:

    What gives us the right to torture animals, steal their babies, abuse them simply for our consumption? Where is our compassion, morality and empathy? Have we been made and brainwashed to believe that it's ok?

The most heartbreaking thing to see and to witness is an innocent benevolent being getting tortured and suffering. This is the realty of eating animal products today. Billions of animals are raised for slaughter every single year, and the overwhelmingly large majority of them go through horrific and terrifying experiences. It’s hard to imagine how anybody could eat or wear the clothes of diseased animals knowing what they went through. It’s also hard to believe that anybody who does eat or purchase products that have used animals in their manufacturing process would do that kind of “labour” themselves.

The truth is that many people still don’t know what these beings are going through. It’s absolutely heartbreaking, immoral, and unethical. Morality, empathy, and love are all emotions that need to return to planet Earth, and as long as we have multiple industries exploiting animals, that can’t happen.

If you’re unaware of what these animals are going through on a daily basis, a recent PETA investigation on two of the world’s top cashmere exporters revealed extreme cruelty, including the violent killing of cashmere goats. You can read more about it and see some footage of that here, if you’re interested.

You can view more examples of graphic footage in the trailer of “The Buddha Bowl,” a documentary in the making featuring personalities and some of the most influential and renowned spiritual leaders from all over the world sharing their perspectives on veganism. These include viewpoints from Buddha himself and from spiritual leaders from the past and present, totalling about 30 interviews on animal rights, environmental issues and health.

One of the people in that documentary is Thich Nhat Hanh, a Vietnamese Buddhist monk who is recognized as a global spiritual leader, poet and peace activist. The video below is not part of the documentary listed above, but from an interview taken a few years ago at a conference.

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Are We Even Designed To Eat Meat?

There is no doubt our world is becoming more awake, aware, and compassionate. Millions of people around the world have transitioned towards a plant-based diet. This represents the kind of compassion and empathy our world needs more of, and this diet can do nothing but benefit human health, the planet, and the animals.

It’s no secret that eating meat and animal products is destroying the Earth, as clearing land for animal grazing and slaughter is one of the leading causes of deforestation, and factory farms are an environmental disaster.

More people are also starting to become aware of plant-based diets and their health benefits.

A recent study conducted by researchers in California and France found that meat protein is associated with a very sharp increased risk of heart disease, while protein from nuts and seeds is actually beneficial for the human heart. The study is titled “Patterns of plant and animal protein intake are strongly associated with cardiovascular mortality: The Adventist Health Study-2 cohort,”

It’s one of many studies that’ve emerged over the years showing the benefits of plant-based diets and their ability to reverse diseases. On the other hand, many studies published have shown how the consumption of meat has the exact opposite effect.

Below is a clip from a recent CETV episode where CE founder Joe Martino and I go into the discussion a little deeper, with a specific focus on plant-based protein compared to meat protein. If interested, you can watch the full episode here by signing up for your free trial. CETV is a platform that we created to combat the censorship we’ve experienced over the past couple of years.

I also go into this type of discussion, if you’re interested in reading about it, in an article I recently published: “Another Study Suggests Humans Are Not Designed To Eat Meat.”

The Takeaway

Human beings are born with compassion and empathy. What we are doing to animals on our planet today, and how many continue to ignore it and be unaffected by it, is simply as a result of mass brainwashing and marketing by big food corporations. The truth is that we’ve been taught to ignore it, we’ve been taught to believe that it’s OK and it’s our right to do this to others who share the planet with us. No child would ever stand for such a thing unless they were taught to do so. It’s the same thing as racism, we are not born with it, we are taught it. I urge all those who are reading this to do their research into where the vast majority of our food and clothes are coming from, watch what these animals are going through, look into their eyes and and feel what they are feeling.

The ability to feel and understand the emotions of others, animal or human, is a HUGE and VITAL step towards creating a better world and a better overall human experience.

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Awareness

Food Brands Owned By Monsanto

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Below is a list of food brands currently owned by Monsanto. The list was put out by Vocal Media.

  • Reflect On:

    Are the foods we eat safe? Are the chemicals we eat ingest with them safe? A lot of science has shown otherwise, so what's really going on here.

Monsanto is a biotech corporation that was founded in the early 1900s. They produce genetically modified foods (GMOs) and many chemicals that are sprayed onto our food, including several pesticides. A recent study published in the journal Environmental Research titled, Organic diet intervention significantly reduces urinary pesticide levels in U.S. children and adults” outlined the issue with these chemicals, many of which were actually originally designed by Monsanto as warfare weapons to be used as nerve agents.

The study highlighted that diet is the primary source of pesticide exposure in both children and adults. It found that an organic diet significantly reduced neonicotinoid, OP pyrethroid, 2,4-D exposure, with the greatest reduction observed in malathion, clothianidin, and chlorpyrifos.

The researchers noted that all of us are exposed “to a cocktail of toxic synthetic pesticides linked to a range of health problems from our daily diets.” They explained how “certified organic food is produced without these pesticides,” and attempted to answer the question, “Can eating organic really reduce levels of pesticides in our bodies?”

They tested four American families who typically don’t eat organic food to find out.

First, we tested the levels of pesticides in their bodies on a non-organic diet for six days. We found 14 chemicals representing potential exposure to 40 different pesticides in every study participant. These included organophosphates, pyrethroids, neonicotinoids and the phenoxy herbicide 2,4-D. Some of the pesticides we found are linked to increased risk of cancer, infertility, learning disabilities, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and more. (source)

This is one of multiple studies that’ve shown the benefits of switching to an organic diet.

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When it comes to GMOs, there is a wealth of information that shows corruption with regard to their approval. A great resource to learn more about that is  called Altered Genes, Twisted Truth: How the Venture to Genetically Engineer Our Food Has Subverte.

The stranglehold that corporations like Monsanto have on governments and government agencies like the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is quite strong. Many senior CDC scientists actually stressed this, but there are several other examples of this type of corruption.

For example, glyphosate, an active ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide, was recently re-licensed and approved by European Parliament. However, MEPs found the science given to them was plagiarized, full of industry science written by Monsanto. You can read more about that here.

Glyphosate has been implicated in thousands of cancer cases, and Monsanto has already paid out billions of dollars to multiple victims. Dewayne Johnson is one of multiple examples.

Many mainstream foods were also found to be contaminated with glyphosate. Here’s a list of children’s foods that’ve been contaminated.

Monsanto was recently acquired by Bayer Pharmaceuticals. Big food and big pharma are one in the same. They own the press, they own politicians, and they practically dictate government policy. There are a multitude of examples that illustrate the massive amount of corruption that drives these corporations, yet they are still operating despite the fact that the products they offer have been proven to be extremely damaging to human health as well as the environment.

Those of you who have been involved in the past in the battle to protect our children from poorly made vaccines or toxic chemicals in our food or in our water know the power of these industries and how they’ve undermined every institution in our democracy that is supposed to protect little children from powerful, greedy corporations. Even the pharmaceutical companies have been able to purchase congress. They’re the largest lobbying entity in Washington D.C.. They have more lobbyists in Washington D.C. than there are congressman and senators combined. They give twice to congress what the next largest lobbying entity is, which is oil and gas… Imagine the power they exercise over both republicans and democrats. They’ve captured them (our regulatory agencies) and turned them into sock puppets. They’ve compromised the press… and they destroy the publications that publish real science. – Robert F. Kennedy (source)

Today, annual protests are held against the agrochemical company to demonstrate the public’s displeasure with Monsanto’s practices. Not only do the protests illustrate how many people are against genetically modified organisms, but they also represent how many people are against the dangerous pesticides Monsanto produces to kill off pests and insects.

Here are some of the brands that Monsanto works with.

The Brands

This list was recently put out by Vocal Media.

  • Aunt Jemima
  • Aurora Foods
  • Banquet
  • Best Foods
  • Betty Crocker
  • Bisquick
  • Cadbury
  • Campbell’s
  • Capri Sun
  • Carnation
  • Chef Boyardee
  • Coca Cola
  • ConAgra
  • Delicious Brand Cookies
  • Duncan Hines
  • Famous Amos
  • Frito Lay
  • General Mills
  • Green Giant
  • Healthy Choice
  • Heinz
  • Hellman’s
  • Hershey’s Nestle
  • Holsum
  • Hormel
  • Hungry Jack
  • Hunts
  • Interstate Bakeries
  • Jiffy
  • KC Masterpiece
  • Keebler/Flowers Industries
  • Kelloggs
  • Kid Cuisine
  • Knorr
  • Kool-Aid
  • Kraft/Phillip Morris
  • Lean Cuisine
  • Lipton
  • Loma Linda
  • Marie Callenders
  • Minute Maid
  • Morningstar
  • Butterworths
  • Nabisco
  • Nature Valley
  • Ocean Spray
  • Ore-Ida
  • Orville Redenbacher
  • Pasta- Roni
  • Pepperidge Farms
  • Pepsi
  • Pillsbury
  • Pop Secret
  • Post Cereals
  • Power Bar Brand
  • Prego Pasta Sauce
  • Pringles
  • Procter and Gamble
  • Quaker
  • Ragu Sauce
  • Rice-A-Roni
  • Smart Ones
  • Stouffers
  • Shweppes
  • Tombstone Pizza
  • Totinos
  • Uncle Ben’s
  • Unilever
  • V8

The Takeaway

At the end of the day, despite the massive amount of corruption and illegal activities these companies have engaged in, we are the ones buying their products and consuming their foods. All we have to do is make better choices–we can switch to organic produce, we can do our research and purchase from ethical companies, and we can refuse to spray our lawns with herbicides. Vote with your dollar.

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