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The Top 5 Reasons To Never Use Splenda

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This article posted here with permission, from Greenmedinfo.com, written by the founder, Sayer JiFor more news from them, you can sign up for their newsletter here

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Splenda is marketed as a no-calorie, no-guilt sugar substitute. Blood sugar stable, it “passes right through” the body, so it’s safe for diabetics AND you won’t gain weight! Are these claims masking the ugly truth about this chemical imposter? As mounting research shows, when it comes to our diet, there is no free lunch.

The allure is plain to see: a sweetener made from sugar, that tastes like sugar, but has zero calories. If the marketing is to be believed, this product is better than the real thing. It’s everything we love, with all of the evils removed.

When it comes to product marketing, beware the free lunch. Despite claims by the manufacturers that Splenda use is part of a healthy lifestyle, research is piling up that tells a very different story.

From the myth-busting studies linking Splenda to diabetes and weight-gain to sobering research showing increased risks of cancer, and more, our sucralose research portal reveals 22 different signs of trouble associated with this artificial sweetener.

Before we dive into the top reasons to avoid Splenda, let’s separate fact from fiction regarding exactly what this false promise really is.

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What IS Splenda?

The brand name “Splenda” refers to the chemical compound sucralose. The story of this substance does not attempt to conceal its bizarre origin: The year was 1974, when a chemist at a British college was told to “test” this new creation. Instead, he heard “taste,” which he did. The substance had an intensely sweet impact on the tongue, and like that, a new “food” was created for the public.

Seeing the actual chemical name of Splenda makes the synthetic product’s true nature much clearer:

1,6-dichloro-1,6-dideoxy-BETA-D-fructofuranosyl-4-chloro-4-deoxy-alpha-D-galactopyranoside

Although the product is touted as being derived from sugar, sucralose, aka Splenda, is not a form of sucrose, or cane sugar. Natural sugar is a hydrocarbon built around 12 carbon atoms. Sucralose is produced through substituting three hydroxyl groups (hydrogen + oxygen) with three chlorine atoms in the sugar (sucrose) molecule.

When sugar molecules are transformed into Splenda, they become chlorocarbons, the same chemical family as the deadly pesticide, DDT, disinfectants like Clorox Bleach, and the WWI poison gas, dichlorourea. Thanks to its sugary simulation, this dangerous toxicant has earned a place on grocery store shelves and in products worldwide.

Who’s Protecting You?

You may be thinking, “The FDA would never approve this if it wasn’t safe.” Common sense dictates that trying to pass toxic chemicals off as foods would never be allowed to happen in civilized society, right?

Sadly, our collective past has proven that regulatory safety nets often fail to protect consumer safety. Artificial sweeteners like sucralose and aspartame are approved for sale in 90 nations around the world, despite overwhelming evidence linking them to a wide range of serious health conditions, such as cancer, liver failure, and brain damage.

But as concerns about sucralose mount, the scientific consensus is taking notice. A recent Italian study linking Splenda to leukemia in mice prompted the Center for the Public Interest in Science to downgrade the safety classification for Splenda from “safe” to “caution.”

New evidence indicates that many of the associated health concerns present at even lower exposure levels than the manufacturers would have us believe. “Use caution” may prove to be an understatement with serious health consequences.

How Much is Too Much?

While manufacturers go to great lengths to cherry-pick studies in which damage occurs only in high doses, research shows the amount of Splenda required to cause toxic effects is much lower than current guidelines allow. In fact, the acceptable daily intake of Splenda may be set hundreds of times too high to ensure safety.

In 1998, the FDA approved an acceptable daily intake (ADI) for humans of 5 mg/kg per day, based on toxicity studies in rats measuring observed effect level. This safety limit was based on observations of the rats’ outward presentations of disease symptoms.

Since that time, much has been learned about the importance of what is unseen in our biological ecosystem, namely the trillions of microbes that constitute the microbiome. Research into the impact of Splenda on gut health concluded that the observation threshold for adverse effects to the microbiome of rats was 454 times lower than when initially measured, indicating that significant effects are expected in humans who are consuming far less than the advertised acceptable daily intake of Splenda.

Top 5 Reasons to Avoid Splenda

When you understand what Splenda is, and realize there is no regulatory safety net between you and harm, it makes understanding the facts about Splenda even more critical. Here are five alarming reasons to avoid this artificial sweetener.

1. It’s toxic and carcinogenic

Regulatory agencies may be slow to recognize the signs, but our bodies know immediately what is food, and what is poison. A recent study published in the European Journal of Nutrition concluded that rats metabolize sucralose in the same way they metabolize other harmful drugs and toxins. The body treats Splenda as a poison, and works fast to remove it.

Scientists found other toxicological issues with long-term exposure to sucralose. Bowel enlargement, kidney mineralization, and changes to pelvic tissue were some of the side-effects of doses well within limits of the allowable daily intake level set for humans.

These findings do much to disprove the manufacturers claim that this substance merely passes, unaltered, through the digestive tract. The makers of Splenda argue that this “remarkably stable” chemical transits, unchanged, into the urine and feces, when in fact, up to 11% to 27% is absorbed into the body (FDA, 1999).

What effects will these accumulated chemicals have on our health? According to James Bowen, M.D:

“Any chlorocarbons not excreted intact from the body can cause immense damage to the processes of human metabolism and, eventually, our internal organs.”

Warning: Heating Splenda Increases the Risks

Recent findings add increased urgency to existing safety concerns surrounding Splenda’s heat-stability.  Advertised as “ideal for baking”, results show that Splenda is even more dangerous when heated to a mere 248℉.

At this relatively low-heat level, Splenda degrades into toxic compounds like chloropropanol and deadly dioxins. This evidence presents a sharp contrast to the claim that Splenda can safely be used in high-heat processes.

2. Increases risks of diabetes and obesity

Splenda is marketed as a way to “get a little sweetness in your life” without any of the concerns surrounding weight gain or sugar sensitivity. It’s becoming clear just how false this advertising really is. In fact, the trade-off may be far worse than the real thing.

Studies on human test subjects show that sucralose alters the body’s ability to process glucose, creating glucose intolerance, metabolic disturbances, and diabetes-promoting effects that are key factors in obesity. These harmful responses occur despite sucralose containing no calories and being classified as a ‘non-nutritive sweetener.’

In one such trial, a single dose of sucralose led to increases in plasma glucose concentrations, a 20% increase in insulin levels, a 22% greater peak insulin secretion rate, and a 7% decrease in insulin sensitivity.

This human study linked Splenda to diabetes-associated metabolic changes, including increased appetite and weight gain, calling into question its value as a sweetener for those suffering with, or wishing to prevent, blood sugar disorders.

If these sweeteners pass through the gut intact, and are mostly unabsorbed by the body, what could be responsible for these adverse impacts on gut function and insulin response?

It’s in the Microbiota

Researchers hypothesized, and later proved, that gut microbiota drove these adverse effects, including “increased weight and waist-to-hip ratio; higher fasting blood glucose, impaired glucose tolerance, and elevated markers of fatty liver disease.”

They observed significant changes to the gut bacterial composition of mice consuming artificial sweeteners, which brings us to the next reason to avoid Splenda: its effects on the all-important intestinal microbiome.

3. Harms the GI tract

Research into the microbiome continues to yield breakthrough discoveries on the intimate relationship between the ‘enteric brain’ and the central nervous system. This connection may reveal previously unrecognized consequences of the use of this artificial sweetener. It’s negative impact on the microbiome is clear:

  • Sucralose reduced the number of beneficial bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract (e.g., lactobacilli, bifidobacteria),
  • While increasing the count of detrimental bacteria (e.g., enterobacteria).
  • Adverse effects on gut flora did not return to normal (baseline) despite the allowance of a 3-month recovery period.
  • Sucralose altered the pH of the gastrointestinal tract, a prime factor in the development of disease states

These findings coincide with a global uptick in inflammatory bowel disease, particularly evident in Canada, where Sucralose has been proposed to be a primary driver of this disturbing trend.

4. Contaminates breast milk

The use of sucralose has grown so prevalent, even our most vulnerable populations are incapable of opting out of exposure. A recent government-funded study found sucralose contaminated 65% of all breast milk samples assayed.

The groundbreaking study, “Nonnutritive Sweeteners in Breast Milk“, found that sucralose survives maternal metabolism and enters breast milk in the majority of samples tested. The presence of non-nutritive sweeteners in the breast milk was irrespective of whether the mother knowingly consumed the substance.

Adequate proof of the safety of sucralose in infants is not available, and tests are unethical to perform in human subjects. This is one reason for the use of animals in surrogate risk assessments. One such assessment involves testing a chemical’s safety by determining the amount needed to kill 50% of rodents within a short time frame (“acute toxicity”), and then deducing an “acceptable level of harm” to humans. This is done primarily by adjusting for body weight differences between rodents and humans.

This outdated and misleading standard does not account for low-dose, chronic exposures over time, nor does it account for the synergistic toxicities of multiple chemical exposures occurring simultaneously in real-world situations. Until such rigorous testing can be performed, the use of non-nutritive sweeteners should be halted by those wishing to conceive, and women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.

5. Suppresses Thyroid Function, Disrupts Hormones

A study published in the European Journal of Nutrition is the first study of its kind to evaluate the effects of Splenda on thyroid function and metabolism.

Their findings reveal that sucralose is an endocrine disruptor: it disrupts the body’s hormonal systems. In this study, resultant effects included thyroid hormone suppression, increased appetite, and weight gain.

The researchers believed that Splenda’s adverse effects would be reflected in “thyroid histopathology,” i.e. increased instances of thyroid lesions and tumors. Could this be one of the drivers behind the mysterious global uptick in thyroid cancer diagnoses?

In this study, researchers lament the widespread use of non-nutritive sweeteners, particularly concerning due to lack of research on their effects on thyroid:

“Non-nutritive sweeteners are the most widely used food additives worldwide. However, their metabolic outcomes are still a matter of controversy and their effect on the thyroid activity, a key regulator of metabolism, has not been previously studied.”

The chief aim of this study was to reveal the effect of “sweet-type flavor on selected parameters of thyroid activity.”

105 rats were divided into 3 groups that could consume, free-choice, one of three different diets. The three, wheat starch-based diets had identical caloric content, yet differed in the following ways:

  • Diet #1 contained no sugar
  • Diet #2 contained 10 grams of sucrose (cane sugar)
  • Diet #3 contained .0167 grams of sucralose, enough to create the same sweet flavor intensity as Diet #2

Because previous research has established that carbohydrates directly affect thyroid, this study was designed to isolate only the difference between the artificial and natural sweetener. Results indicated that both the presence and type of sweet-flavor carrier effects thyroid activity.

Compared to the diet with cane sugar which stimulates thyroid activity, sucralose diminished thyroid hormone activity. Additionally, key hormone concentrations (T4 & T3) were lower for subjects eating sucralose than in either the sugary or non-sweet diets. Researchers determined that sucralose significantly altered the thyroid and metabolic functions of the animals, with symptoms resembling those of hypothyroidism.

This study proved sucralose is not metabolically inert, the claim often made when questions of toxicity are raised. The results provide compelling evidence that the difference in thyroid and metabolic effects observed between the study groups were due to sucralose’s significant and complex toxicological properties.

For more information and the latest medical research, check out GreenMedInfo’s sucralose research database.

Check out the research on the health benefits of natural sweeteners like honey, and stevia, a no-calorie alternative to synthetic sweeteners.

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Awareness

How To Clear Seriously Blocked Sinuses Naturally In 1 Minute

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Three simple steps you can take to clear blocked sinuses that seem to work for many people.

  • Reflect On:

    Are you healthy? What natural things do you do when "flu season" comes around to give your immune system a boost?

Having clogged sinuses isn’t fun. You can’t breath, you can’t smell, your head hurts, and your voice sounds funny. Finding relief when you have clogged sinuses is usually like finding a million dollars on the ground — it’s amazing!

The causes for nasal congestion can range greatly, and you don’t have to be sick to be congested. Many people will experience congestion from allergies, temperatures, dust, smoking, spicy food, and air particles.

Recently I was at Contact in the Desert in California and I found myself having clogged sinuses from the blowing sand and dry air. Within two days, I couldn’t breathe at all out of one side of my nose and my sinuses got blocked up, causing my face and head to hurt. I needed a solution.

After trying to blow my nose over and over again, I turned to the internet for relief. Sure enough, Google came through.

I found a video by Dr. Adam that quickly and easily explained how to clear sinuses in about one minute using just your fingers — and no, they don’t have to go in your nose. Sure enough, I had relief from the pain the blockage was causing, and I could breathe!

Some might be wondering why I didn’t take sinus or cold medication to get relief. The answer is simple: I don’t like taking medication for anything unless I absolutely have to. I know many of you are on the same page and like to do things naturally. Many cold medications just mask symptoms and come with negative side effects that are worth avoiding if possible.

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How to Clear Your Sinuses Fast!

You simply need to sit down and get your hands ready for the following steps. The video below offers a visual demonstration, so I recommend checking that out too.

1. While sitting with your head and body on about a 45 degree angle, turn your head sideways and rub your sternocleidomastoid muscle downward four or five times. You can find the muscle right beneath your ear running down your neck to your collarbone. See image. Do this on both sides of your neck to help relax your neck.

2. Take your index fingers, locate the hard, bony part of the upper sides of your nose, and move downward toward the soft part on the side of your nose where the bone ends. Begin massaging this area in a circular motion with as much pressure as you can for about 20 seconds. Once completed, rub the muscles from the side of your nose down and toward your cheekbones to relax them.

3. Take your index fingers and run them under the inside orbit bone above your eyes until you find a notch in the bone called the super orbital notch. It is usually just above the centre of the eye. Massage that notch in a circular motion with as much pressure as you can handle for about 20 seconds. Once done, massage your forward with both hands starting in the centre of your forehead and pulling outwards towards your temples.

That’s it! Once you have gone through this process you should notice a lot of relief in your sinuses and should be able to blow your nose quite easily. You may have to repeat this process again, but play with it and see what works for you.

Below is a video from Dr. Adam explaining the entire process. I have also included another helpful method that worked well for me as well.

Alternative Method

This method is simpler but may not be as effective for everyone. As always, do what works best for you.

1. Push your tongue flat into the roof of your mouth, with decent pressure, for one second.

2. Then, take your thumb and press the area right between your eyebrows above your nose for one second.

3. Alternate between steps one and two over and over again for about 20-30 seconds. Note: You are not pressing the points at the same time, simply alternating between them.

Repeat this process as necessary to help clear your sinuses.

Prevention

If you’ve had blocked sinuses, you probably don’t want it to happen often, so prevention is the key! Here are a few ways you can avoid blocked sinuses.

Eat a well-balanced diet – Eating healthy foods promotes good health. What you put into your body to digest is what determines your health. If you want your immune system working well, take care with quality food and keep your gut performing well.

Get regular exercise – Regular exercise also helps improve overall health and the immune system.

Quit smoking – It goes without saying, but cigarettes are not good for us and the smoke can irritate sinuses.

Use a humidifier – If you find your house dry, use a humidifier to help dampen the air. You can also hop in a warm shower and breathe in the steam. It’s best to use a chlorine filter on your shower head so you aren’t breathing in toxic chemicals from chlorine.

Cut out antibiotics – Antibiotics don’t do anything for viral infections, which is usually why people get clogged sinuses when they are sick. Antibiotics wreak havoc on your health. Only take them when they are absolutely necessary!

Keep a clean home – Dust and poor air quality can also cause blocked sinuses. Vacuum and wipe down surfaces of your home regularly. Decrease clutter and areas where dust can collect and stay.

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Alternative News

Cannabis Might Reverse Heart Failure, University of Hawaii Study Finds

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    New research is showing that TRPV1, a cannabinoid receptor found abundantly in the heart may be key in slowing down and potentially even reversing heart failure.

  • Reflect On:

    With so many medical applications and the potential to treat and even cure a wide variety of diseases, why has there been such a lack of research, funding and clinical trials when it comes to medical marijuana?

Cannabis could potentially slow and even reverse heart failure via TRPV1, a cannabinoid receptor. This is according to research led by a team at the University of Hawaiʻi John A. Burns School of Medicine (JABSOM).  Alexander Stokes, a JABSOM assistant professor in cell and molecular biology, said “the potential medical benefits of using cannabis-based therapies for the treatment of heart disease are promising.”

TRPV1 is showing long-term effective reversal of heart failure when the substance is administered orally. The key here is orally, this doesn’t mean that you can smoke cannabis and it will be good for your heart, in fact, it may very well have a negative effect if you do that. “TRPV1 has primarily been studied as a pain receptor,” said Stokes. “The receptors are abundant in the heart, and we are excited to show that if we inhibit its function with oral doses of drugs, we can reverse some effects of heart failure.”

The findings were published in the journal Channels.

A Big Topic Right Now

The topic of medical marijuana is a big one right now, especially in Canada where it was recently legalized. For years, there’s been a negative stigma attached to the substance, and when one dives deep into the subject it’s quite easy to see why. Cannabis, often called marijuana, has potential to treat and possibly even cure a wide range of diseases, but because of prohibition, the studies examining the medicinal aspects of the herb have been very limited. This is very unfortunate, for a number of reasons, and also very suspicious.

If we look at cancer, for example, multiple studies have clearly shown its potential to completely destroy cancer cells, many in vitro studies have clearly demonstrated this potential, without question. They’re not hard to find and have been published in abundance. Here is a video of Dr. Christina Sanchez, a molecular biologist at Compultense University in Madrid, Spain, explaining how THC (the main psychoactive constituent of the cannabis plant) can completely kill cancer cells. THC is simply one constituent of cannabis. It has been shown to be effective for multiple diseases as well, while other diseases are better treated with CBD, another constituent within cannabis. This begs the question, why have there been no, or at least so few, clinical trials set up as a result?

This hasn’t stopped people taking matters into their own hands though. There are numerous examples all over the internet of people claiming that cannabis oil, for example, cured their cancer. But from a scientific perspective this isn’t evidence, it’s simply anecdotal and as a result of a lack of research we cannot officially say cannabis kills cancer. We can only say that it has tremendous potential and that a lot more research is needed.

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Pharma vs Cannabis

When a pharmaceutical drug shows even less than half of the potential that marijuana has shown, clinical trials are set up right away. Just imagine if the same resources that are poured into conventional cancer treatments were given to medical marijuana’s potential to treat cancer, among a wide range of other diseases. If that were to happen, we would know much more. But the lack of research continues. Is it because if scientists were to discover what strain, method of delivery and all of the other factors that require more research that are needed to treat disease, cannabis could become an effective treatment for cancer? What would happen to conventional treatments? Would people have to pay for their treatment if it was disclosed how to, for example, make cannabis oil in the right way for a specific cancer? Maybe this has something to do with it?

Big pharma would lose billions. It’s definitely something to think about.

What’s happening right now with the legalization of marijuana is that components of it are allowed to be studied. It seems that drugs will be developed to synthesize certain components of the plant, and the drugs themselves can then be patented. This is how big pharma will ultimately make money off of medical marijuana.

The Challenge With Government Control Of Cannabis

It’s great to see people with Parkinson’s, Dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, Epilepsy, cancer and more have tremendous success with medical marijuana. What’s unfortunate is that mainstream medical marijuana will be in the hands of big pharma, it already is. We will not know how it’s grown, how it’s been manipulated, and what’s been changed. It’s simply being used for profit, because at the end of the day that’s what it’s all about in our current infrastructure. We have a sick care industry, not a health care industry.

A free, open and caring society, a health care industry that truly cares about health could use multiple natural substances to completely wipe out the need for any pharmaceutical drug. There are massive amounts of foods, herbs and plants that, if studied in full, could completely eliminate our dependence on the corporation.

“The medical profession is being bought by the pharmaceutical industry, not only in terms of the practice of medicine, but also in terms of teaching and research. The academic institutions of this country are allowing themselves to be the paid agents of the pharmaceutical industry. I think it’s disgraceful.”

– Arnold Seymour Relman (1923-2014), Harvard professor of medicine and former Editor-in-Chief of The New England Medical Journal  (source)

Important Thoughts To Consider About Cannabis

The other side of the coin is that heavy cannabis use, although not lethal, can be dangerous and potentially damaging to young brains that are not fully developed, and perhaps to those who use it on a regular basis in ways we do not yet understand.

It’s not as harmful as alcohol abuse or smoking cigarettes, but there is still a lot that we don’t know. Legalization in Canada at least have led to the idea that it’s completely safe and beneficial for everybody. This is also, most likely, not true.  We need to get past the idea that it’s something healthy for everybody, and even healthy to smoke cannabis on a regular basis. But when it comes to the medicinal aspects of cannabis, for several diseases, there is a very serious discussion to be had here as it’s again, already helping many people around the world with their cancer, with their epilepsy, etc.

With many people losing trust in the medical industry, it’s easy to see why they are turning to growing their own cannabis, testing doses, and methods of delivery, etc. For some, it’s a shot in the dark but worth a try.

We are not advocating that it’s healthy to use cannabis recreationally and that it will not have any negative effects, we are simply stating that it’s a head scratcher how such a potent medical plant that clearly has multiple medical applications has been ignored and prohibited from research and professionally treating many diseases with it.

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Awareness

America’s Fifty-Fold Increase in Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder – What’s Going On?

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Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), considered a neurobiological condition, is an often “long-lasting disorder in which a person has uncontrollable, reoccurring thoughts (obsessions), and behaviors (compulsions) that he or she feels the urge to repeat over and over.” Although the specific obsessions and compulsions vary widely from person to person, the common denominator is that they “create stress and interfere with daily life.”

U.S. researchers estimate that OCD affects 1%-2% of children and up to 3% of adolescents and adults. The current lifetime prevalence estimate of around 2.7% is 54 times higher than the estimated pre-1980s prevalence (for the U.S. population as a whole) of around 0.05% (1 in 2000). In a retrospective hospital-based study that looked at OCD prevalence over time, researchers who examined psychiatric discharge diagnoses from 1969 to 1990 reported that something changed in the 1980s, with a marked increase in the frequency of OCD diagnoses over the decade.

Reflecting the disorder’s growing prominence, the American Psychiatric Association’s 2013 diagnostic manual revisions eliminated OCD as a subcategory of “anxiety disorders” and gave the diagnosis its own category of “obsessive-compulsive and related disorders.” OCD experts now urge busy neurologists “to be aware of OCD…and to have a high index of suspicion for this disorder.”

OCD is just one of numerous neurodevelopmental disorders that have gone from relatively rare to common since the late 1980s—over the same time frame in which the childhood vaccine schedule exploded. There are at least three reasons to suspect a potential vaccine-OCD link:

  1. Proper brain function depends on a well-regulated immune system.
  2. Vaccination’s acknowledged aim is to “perturb the immune system.”
  3. Immune dysregulation is a documented contributor to OCD and other neurodevelopmental disorders.

As Duke University researchers have stated, “the immune system, both in the central nervous system (CNS) and in the periphery, is crucial in shaping and influencing normal brain functions, and any disruption of immune function could adversely impact the brain too.”

Not only OCD

Studies show that OCD is more severe when it is early-onset; when diagnosed before puberty, children have “a longer duration of illness [and] higher rates of comorbid tics” as well as more frequent compulsions and greater psychosocial difficulties. In addition to comorbid tics, OCD often presents alongside autism spectrum disorder (ASD), attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and other diagnoses that are not only increasingly common in American children but often persist into adulthood. In a study of adults with OCD, three out of four (75%) had one or more other neuropsychiatric diagnoses. Researchers also believe that some types of OCD may be closely related to PANDAS (Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcal Infections).

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Compared to girls, boys tend toward a greater neuroinflammatory response, reflecting sex differences in how the brain’s principal immune cells (the microglia) function. This may be one of the reasons why early-onset OCD is two to three times more common in boys. (In early adulthood, however, OCD symptoms appear more frequently in women.) In this respect, OCD is no different from a number of other neurodevelopmental and health conditions, including ASD, that also disproportionately affect boys.

The Yale study

In 2017, researchers from the Yale Child Study Center published a retrospective case-control study in Frontiers in Psychiatry that considered a possible association between prior vaccination and increased incidence of seven neuropsychiatric disorders, including OCD. Recall that at the start of the 1980s, children received three vaccines for seven illnesses (totaling two dozen doses by age 18), whereas fully vaccinated children now get almost six dozen doses for sixteen conditions.

The Yale researchers looked at a national sample of privately insured children and adolescents (ages 6-15) for the six-year period from January 2002 through December 2007. They found that for four diagnoses—OCD, anorexia nervosa, anxiety disorder and tic disorder—the affected children were more likely than matched controls to have received a flu shot in the preceding 12 months. In addition:

  • For OCD, flu shots just three or six months prior also increased the risk.
  • There was an association between OCD and hepatitis A vaccination.
  • Children with OCD, anorexia or a tic disorder were more heavily vaccinated overall compared to children without these disorders.

All three vaccines marketed in the U.S. for hepatitis A—GlaxoSmithKline’s Havrix and Twinrix and Merck’s Vaqta—list anorexia as adverse reactions reported during clinical trials. The Yale authors considered the “high comorbidity rates” between OCD and anorexia significant and also highlighted that OCD and anorexia have a number of “immune-mediated mechanisms” in common.

OCD is also frequently comorbid with a variety of autoimmune diseases. A recent Swedish study reported that individuals with OCD had a 43% increased risk of any autoimmune disease (compared to those without OCD), and “significantly elevated” risks for autoimmune conditions “across all organ systems”:

  • Moisture-producing glands: Sjögren’s syndrome (94% increased risk)
  • Small intestine: Celiac disease (76%)
  • Peripheral nervous system: Guillain-Barré syndrome (71%)
  • Gastrointestinal tract: Crohn’s disease (66%)
  • Thyroid: Hashimoto’s thyroiditis (59%)
  • Pancreas: Type 1 diabetes mellitus (56%)
  • Platelets: Idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (51%)
  • Large intestine: Ulcerative colitis (41%)
  • Central nervous system: Multiple sclerosis (41%)
  • Skin: Psoriasis vulgaris (32%)

Beware the adjuvants

Given the extensive overlap between OCD and autoimmunity, the growing body of research that links vaccine adjuvants to autoimmunity is relevant for OCD. In fact, adjuvants—intended to intensify the immune response to a vaccine (immunogenicity)—present vaccine makers with a dilemma: “[I]ncreased vaccine reactogenicity [adverse reactions to vaccination] is the inevitable price for improved immunogenicity.”

Pointing to their influenza vaccination findings, the authors of the Yale study note that six European countries and China linked H1N1 influenza vaccination in 2009 to autoimmune narcolepsy, and some speculated that the H1N1 vaccine’s adjuvant—a squalene-based oil emulsion called AS03—was the culprit. Researchers caution:

A major recurring concern is the potential association between oil emulsion adjuvants and autoimmune disease induction as seen in animal and fish models. A single intradermal injection of a range of oil emulsions, including squalene emulsions, induces adjuvant arthritis in susceptible murine and rat models. […] There is a theoretical risk that any humans who share similar genetic susceptibility features to these models could similarly be prone to develop adjuvant arthritis, lupus, autoimmune hepatitis, uveitis or some other form of autoimmune disease after exposure to oil emulsion adjuvants alone or when combined with other potent innate immune activators [emphasis added].

Aluminum-based vaccine adjuvants—and especially the proprietary AAHS [amorphous aluminum hydroxyphosphate sulfate] adjuvant that Merck includes in its Gardasil 9, hepatitis A, hepatitis B and Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) vaccines—are also a prominent suspect in the autoimmunity epidemic. Researchers who compared AAHS to two other types of aluminum adjuvants found that AAHS was “substantially” different from the other two in revving up the immune system. As Italian researchers have stated, “the specific mechanism of action of each single adjuvant may have different effects on the course of different diseases.”

Hear no evil, see no evil

Pharmacotherapy with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) is a “first-line” treatment for OCD; because remission is uncommon, “long-term management is often necessary.” Pfizer and GlaxoSmithKline—two of the four companies that lead the U.S. vaccine market—make some of the top-selling SSRIs prescribed for individuals with OCD; the two pharma behemoths completed a joint venture in 2019 to integrate their consumer health care businesses. From their point of view, OCD represents an attractive market.

Meanwhile, earlier this year, the federal government and the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program turned down citizen requests to add asthma, autism, tics and several neuropsychiatric disorders—including PANDAS—to the Program’s Vaccine Injury Table. The feds’ refusal was not terribly surprising: very few new injuries have made it onto the Table since the Program came into being in 1986, despite the large number of vaccines piled onto the childhood schedule after that year. The government’s resolute refusal to conduct needed studies and its denial of even the possibility of vaccine culpability for conditions such as OCD leaves individuals no choice but to ferret out answers on their own.

Sign up for free news and updates from Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and the Children’s Health Defense. CHD is planning many strategies, including legal, in an effort to defend the health of our children and obtain justice for those already injured. Your support is essential to CHD’s successful mission.

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