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Is The Chocolate You Eat Toxic? Study Finds Heavy Metals In Popular Chocolate Brands

Health advocacy group As You Sow conducted a study and found that chocolate products manufactured by Hershey’s, Mars, Lindt, and other popular brands were found to contain heavy metals such as lead and/or cadmium.

Michelle Blair

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Like many other people on this planet, I absolutely love chocolate. Hot chocolate, chocolate bars, chocolate drizzle, chocolate fondue — you name it, and I’m likely interested in it. After all, it’s delicious, and in some cases even nutritious if it’s organic and raw cacao.

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Although not listed among the ingredients, many chocolate bars actually contain the heavy metals lead and cadmium. Despite the fact that they’re naturally occurring elements that are absorbed by the cacao plant, they pose some serious threats to the human body.

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The Study That Discovered Heavy Metals in Popular Chocolate

California-based health advocacy group As You Sow tested 50 cocoa products by an independent lab, discovering that tons of them contain concerning amounts of lead and cadmium. Some of the products that tested positive for these heavy metals, moreover, had quantities above the state’s limits, though their guidelines are stricter than federal ones.

To be exact, the group found lead levels in chocolate to be nine times the daily amount the state of California considers “safe” to avoid reproductive damage. The group also discovered cadmium up to seven times California’s recommended maximum daily exposure levels. However, keep in mind that these “guidelines” are just that; they’re only guidelines, they’re not actually enforceable by law per se.

As You Sow’s findings read as follows:

We found that 45 of the 70 chocolate products contain lead and/or cadmium above the safe harbor threshold of California’s Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986 (Proposition 65). Based on these results, we have filed notices with 18 manufacturers, including Trader Joe’s, Hershey’s, Mondelēz, Lindt, Whole Foods, Kroger, Godiva, See’s Candies, Mars, Theo Chocolate, Equal Exchange,  Ghirardelli, Earth Circle Organics, and more, for failing to provide the legally required warning to consumers that the products contain cadmium or lead, or both.

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California’s Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act, otherwise known as Proposition 65, states that consumer products need to specifically state on the label that they contain chemicals in amounts that can significantly increase risk of cancer or result in birth or reproductive issues.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention maintains that there is no safe level of lead for children. Many scientists maintain the same recommendation that there is no safe level of lead exposure for adults either, which you can read more about in the following studies here and here. It’s been found to impair IQ as well as affect one’s ability to focus. And unfortunately, these heavy metals don’t just pass right through your body; about 50% gets absorbed into the bloodstream.

The U.S. government maintains that small children should not ingest more than 6 micrograms of lead per day from candy; however, the Environmental Protection Agency classifies it as a probable human carcinogen and even small amounts of cadmium can result in kidney damage over time. Do you really want to be risking ingesting any cadmium at all?

A statement by As You Sow reads: “Lead is linked to a variety of neurological impairments, including learning disabilities, seizures, and a lower IQ. Developing fetuses and children are especially vulnerable to lead exposure because their brains are in critical growth and development stages.”

In response to As You Sow’s publication, the FDA stated“FDA monitors lead levels in the U.S. food supply and has established guidance levels for lead in some foods, such as candy.”

Again, these are only guidance levels, which are not enforced by law. Some of the companies implicated in the study also replied, with perhaps the most disheartening response coming from Hershey, who stated: “People have been eating cocoa and chocolate safely for centuries. Consumers can rest assured that our products are safe, and that our industry adheres to all government regulations.”

Yes, cocoa and chocolate products are not always damaging to the body, and in some cases are very healthy, but we’re not talking about products like Hershey’s Kisses. Just because these are naturally occurring elements doesn’t make them healthy. This is an irresponsible argument to make.

Final Thoughts 

You may not think these small quantities of heavy metals are a big deal, but what happens when it all adds up? Are you really willing to risk something as important as your health for a conventional chocolate bar? The choice is yours!

Much love.

CE Related Articles:

Mercury and Lead: The Fallacy of “Safe” Levels

What Chocolate Can Do To Your Health: The Good & The Bad

10 Of The Worst Food Ingredients To Never Eat Again

13 Chemicals Used In Food Products In The USA Today That Are Banned In Other Countries

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Awareness

Boosting Your Mood and Improving Your Health With Vitamin D

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Vitamin D is essential for proper immune functioning and alleviation of inflammation.

  • Reflect On:

    Are you or someone you love suffering from depression or an autoimmune disorder? When is the last time you checked your Vitamin D levels?

Before you begin...

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Are you or someone you love suffering from depression or an autoimmune disorder? It appears vitamin D deficiency may be to blame.

Vitamin D is essential for proper immune functioning and alleviation of inflammation. The beneficial effects of vitamin D on protective immunity are due in part to its impact on the innate immune system and has numerous effects on cells within the immune system. Vitamin D is also involved in maintaining the proper balance of several minerals in the body. And, it helps to ward off the flu and many viruses and treat them. The latest research links vitamin D deficiency to many disease states. These disease states include cancer, osteoporosis, heart disease, depression, arthritis, and just about every other degenerative disease.

 “Vitamin D reduces depression. In a randomized, double-blind study, People with depression who received vitamin D supplements noticed a marked improvement in their symptoms.” – Journal of Internal Medicine

According to the Nutrition Research Journal, as many as 80% of people are deficient in vitamin D. Inadequate exposure to sunshine, poor eating habits, malabsorption, the VDR genetic mutation, and accelerated catabolism due to certain medications, dark skin pigment color, and too much sunscreen can be to blame. 

A doctor can check vitamin D levels with a simple blood test. Many mainstream doctors will suggest that you are within normal limits if your levels are 20-30ng/mL. However, for optimal health, the Endocrine Society and many functional medicine M.D.s and naturopaths will recommend levels of between 40-70 ng/mL for both children and adults. These doctors will also recommend a more aggressive replenishment program. For example, at age five, my son’s level was 24. The pediatrician recommended 500iu daily of supplementation, while our naturopath recommended 5,000iu daily for six months before retesting. Six months later, his levels were almost normal. 

“Through several mechanisms, vitamin D can reduce risk of infections. Those mechanisms include inducing cathelicidins and defensins that can lower viral replication rates and reducing concentrations of pro-inflammatory cytokines that produce the inflammation that injures the lining of the lungs, leading to pneumonia, as well as increasing concentrations of anti-inflammatory cytokines” – PubMed

How to Increase Your Vitamin D Levels

Get enough sun. Vitamin D3, “the sunshine vitamin,” is the only vitamin your body that is made, with the help of the sun. So be sure to get enough sun exposure to help the body make this essential nutrient. Hold off trying to protect ourselves from the rays of the sun at every turn by slathering sunscreen. Allow yourself to play outside, garden, and enjoy the rays in moderation.

If you must use some sunscreen, avoid chemical sunscreens made with toxic chemicals that cause thyroid dysfunction, endocrine disruption, allergies, organ toxicity, reproductive toxicity, skin cancer, development, brain, and metabolism problems. Shop for natural mineral-zinc-based certified products instead. When exposed to scorching climates or in the sun for extended periods, we use sunscreens by Babyganics, Badger, Babo Botanicals, and Goddess Garden products.

Eat a well-balanced diet, with foods higher in vitamin D. Although it is believed that we only get twenty percent from the foods we eat. Some foods higher in D include cod liver oil, fish, oysters, eggs, and mushrooms. 

Get checked for the VDR mutation. A blood test will determine if you have mutations in the vitamin D receptor. The consequence can be lower vitamin D levels and the inability to absorb vitamin calcium and many other minerals properly. According to a 2020 scientific report, supplementation of vitamin D can help improve VDR gene expression, so more supplementation may be necessary if you have this mutation.

“Something so simple. Vitamin D supplementation could improve the health status of millions and so becomes an elegant solution to many of our health problems today.” – Carol L. Wagner, MD – Medical University of South Carolina

Supplementation 101. Supplementation is often critical if you cannot properly metabolize or absorb enough vitamin D or not get enough sunshine. In areas with long winters and specific populations of people with darker skin color, supplementation may be even more critical. There are many supplements on the market. However, many tablet forms are not as bioavailable and harder to absorb. Therefore, it has been recommended that liquid forms are better. In addition, liquid D is often suspended in olive oil, which helps the vitamins to absorb more easily since it is fat soluble. One of my favorite brands is by Seeking Health. It does not contain any impurities or allergy-inducing ingredients. 

Final Thoughts

Boosting the immune system naturally works on your body’s innate wisdom. It supports the body to operate like a well-oiled machine, protects it from unwanted pathogens and disease, and helps ensure a healthy body and mind.

To receive more info on how you and your family can overcome ADHD, apraxia, anxiety, and more without medication SIGN UP HERE or purchase my book Healing without Hurting.

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If you have been wanting to build your self awareness, improve your.critical thinking, become more heart centered and be more aware of bias, this is the perfect course!

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General

Are Lockdowns Affecting Children?

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CE Staff Writer 2 minute read

In Brief

  • The Facts:

    We spoke to activist and mother Stephanie Sibbio about her co-creation of an organization called 100 Million Moms which seeks to empower women to stand up against injustices.

  • Reflect On:

    Are we choosing virus mitigation methods that are short sighted and harmful over the long term? Are they more harmful than the virus itself?

Before you begin...

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

The potential downsides of lockdowns during pandemics have been explored quite a bit – and the truth is the scientific community is quite divided on whether it’s the right move. On one hand a case can be made for effectiveness of lockdowns, but at quite a cost, while on the other hand many have shown lockdowns to be ineffective in slowing spread. How a study is organized and conducted can also dramatically change results.

Interestingly a study in Nature showed that “less disruptive and costly NPIs can be as effective as more intrusive, drastic, ones (for example, a national lockdown).” This essentially states that governments could choose effective ways to mitigate virus spread effectively without inducing unwanted and long term side effects on society as a whole via lockdowns – regardless, lockdowns are still widely being used.

One question we might have is, what about factors that are not so easy to measure right away? Things like long term psychological damage of being constantly stressed, out of touch with community and friends, and confined to our homes. What affects are children experiencing in their development and learning? We may not know exactly for quite some time.

I felt inspired to speak to a mother who has not only be asking this question with regards to her child, but who has decided to do something to push back against government measures, like lockdowns, that many citizens and scientist don’t agree with.

Along with another activist, Stephanie Sibbio created a movement called 100 Million Moms who, as their Instagram states, are a rights-based movement empowering moms all over the world to stand up against injustice. We advocate for natural health & medical freedom.

I spoke to Stephanie about how she has seen lockdowns affecting children, and her story in co-creating 100 Million Moms. In this discussion you will learn how you can get involved as well.

Further Discussion

A large meta analysis on mask wearing has shown that children are having physiological issues and learning challenges with prolonged mask wearing.

A group of doctors did a panel worth considering that discusses the potential harms of lockdowns and the science that supports the idea.

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Health

Rare Mineral Can Remove Harmful Toxins & Heavy Metals With Just 30 Seconds a Day

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These days many people are struggling with fatigue, heart and respiratory issues, brain fog and memory challenges, and on top of that, cancer rates are increasing year after year. At times these issues can be a result of cumulative stress and emotional trauma, and other times it can be the result of our overly toxic environments at home, at work and in our cities.

Most disease, cancers and health problems we experience are rooted in toxicity. Mercury, arsenic, lead, cadmium, pesticides, and volatile organic compounds just scratch the surface of what our bodies have to fight against daily.

By some estimates, we are exposed to over 80,000 chemicals in our daily lives, just from the food we eat, water we drink, and air we breathe. These toxins build up in our bodies affecting our sleep, memory, concentration, weight, and even inflammation (1, 2, 3, 4).

Toxins can be found everywhere, including:

  • Food (pesticides, herbicides, chemical additives)
  • Pollutants (the air you breathe)
  • Skincare and Personal Care Items
  • Household Items (couches, chairs, beds, Paint, keys)
  • Water (a common source of heavy metals)

Our body’s are natural detoxifiers, kidneys, liver, and lymphatic system is designed to keep our bodies clean. Hence detox is not needed. But as our lives become more toxin filled, our bodies have a difficult time keeping up and this is why over toxicity leading to disease is become a prevalent issue. Thankfully, there are natural solutions that can help. One of those solutions is a powerful mineral, created through a reaction of volcanic ash and seawater, that can eliminate dangerous toxins from the body, down to the cellular level.

Its negative-charge and honeycomb shape acts as a natural chelator, binding to positively-charged toxins and ushering them out of the body, quickly and effectively.

Zeolite Clinoptilolite: A Mineral for Detox

If you’ve heard of the zeolite Clinoptilolite, it’s because this type of zeolite has been widely studied for its ability to:

  • Flush heavy metals from the body, including toxic lead (5)
  • Provide alkalizing minerals to support a healthy pH
  • Protect kidney function by detoxing heavy metals (6)
  • Strengthen the immune system through removing toxins (7)
  • Protect against leaky gut by strengthening the intestinal wall (8)
  • And much more, as extensive clinical research shows (9)

The detoxification and health benefits of the zeolite Clinoptilolite are astounding. It’s hundreds of times more effective than activated charcoal, a commonly known and used detoxifier that can detox the gut but comes with harsh side effects.

The zeolite Clinoptilolite can bind to toxins throughout the whole body and has an affinity for toxins only, so it never removes beneficial minerals, and there are no negative side effects.

The truth of the matter is though, not all zeolite products work, and all are not created equally. In fact, we stayed away from zeolite here at CE for a while due to the fact we could not find a reliable source.

Most zeolite products are not capable of cleansing at the cellular level. To go beyond the gut and reach into cells for a deep detox, the zeolite must be nanosized. When the zeolite is nanosized and suspended in water molecule clusters, this natural detoxifier can travel throughout the body, even past the blood-brain barrier.

What brings on things like clearer thinking, ease in recalling tasks, improved mood and much more is the fact that your brain is now free of neurotoxic heavy metals.

But to take out heavy metals and other toxins, the zeolite must also be cleansed and pre-filled with alkalizing minerals. Why? The fact is, when mined, zeolite comes filled with environmental pollutants because that’s what zeolites are good at in nature – absorbing toxins.

However, if a zeolite is already filled with toxins, it can’t take any more from your body. That’s why most zeolites sold today don’t work, and why we haven’t recommended one before.

The Most Effective Zeolite on the Market Backed by Science

After doing extensive research, we started taking a zeolite product in December of 2020 from Pure Body Extra by a company called Touchstone Essentials. Their cleansing process and nanosizing technology is hands-down the most advanced we’ve seen, yielding the only zeolite on the market that can effectively detoxify the entire body on a cellular level.

This zeolite uses nanosized Clinoptilolite to access toxins everywhere in the body. These particles are so small they are invisible to the naked eye and need to be magnified thousand-fold. And it’s backed up by the gold standard in instrumentation – Malvern particle size testing.

This nanometer size means they can get to a cellular level, and it also means the collective surface area of the zeolite particles creates a vast filter that mops up toxins within hours.

And because these zeolite particles are encapsulated within water molecule clusters, it is delivered in a liquid spray that is easy to use (just a few sprays, morning, noon, and night) with no odor, no taste, and no hassle.

Pure Body Extra has also been cleansed of existing pollutants so that it more effectively removes heavy metals throughout your body. This is all proven with third-party independent clinical testing. Not only that, the zeolite particles are pre-filled with alkalizing minerals. That way, the zeolite “swaps” a beneficial mineral for a toxin every time.

In all our research, this zeolite product has the most rigorous research and testing.

 

Why We’re Recommending it Today

We take Pure Body Extra every single day and have been blown away by the results. We were so impressed that we reached out to the company about making this zeolite available to our readers.

It turns out, Touchstone is as passionate about prevention and natural treatments as we are, so they agreed to reserve 500 bottles of Pure Body Extra at an incredibly low price, exclusively for our readers. Which is why we’re recommending it to you now. It’s truly a miraculous product.

A Special Offer for Our Readers Only

Normally, this remarkable detoxifier sells on their website for $79.95, which is why we were shocked when Touchstone said they’d offer it to our readers for just $5. They’ll even include free shipping. We asked them how they could possibly offer it at such a low price, and this is what the company said.

“We’re on a mission to touch one million families with goodness. We know if we just get the product in people’s hands, the results are so good, people reorder it again and again. We’re happy to make a difference in people’s lives.”

When you subscribe to a monthly shipment today, not only is your first bottle $5, but you’ll lock in a 20% off member discount and free shipping every month after that. Of course, the 100% Risk-Free Guarantee remains.

There’s zero risk. You can cancel your subscription any time (before the next shipment), or return your shipment within 30 days for a full refund. They’ll even refund your $5 if you’re not happy with the product, less return shipping of course.

Imagine being free of disease-causing heavy metals, nitrosamines, volatile organic compounds, and pesticides in just 30 seconds a day, with no harsh side effects.

It’s only available to the first 500 people as that is what has been reserved for our audience, and at only $5, they’re selling quickly.

In today’s toxin-filled world, our body’s detoxification system simply can’t keep up with the daily onslaught. We all need to reduce our toxin load if we want to live happy, healthy lives.

 

Dive Deeper

Click below to watch a sneak peek of our brand new course!

Our new course is called 'Overcoming Bias & Improving Critical Thinking.' This 5 week course is instructed by Dr. Madhava Setty & Joe Martino

If you have been wanting to build your self awareness, improve your.critical thinking, become more heart centered and be more aware of bias, this is the perfect course!

Click here to check out a sneak peek and learn more.

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