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16 More Reasons Black Seed Is ‘The Remedy For Everything But Death’

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Peer-reviewed research published over many years has shown the tremendous health benefits one can achieve from consuming black seed.

  • Reflect On:

    Imagine if the same resources that are poured into chemical medicine were put into natural medicine. Food interventions have shown great results, far greater than some of our most commonly prescribed drugs, so why isn't the doctor prescribing food?

This article was written by Sayer Ji, founder of Greenmedinfo.com where it originally appeared, it’s posted here with permission. For more information from Greenmedinfo, please sign up for their newsletter here

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A year ago, we wrote an article about nigella sativa (aka black seed) titled, ‘The Remedy For Everything But Death.’ It described the research on the many ways in which black seed (nigella sativa) is a potentially life-saving medicinal food, and is one of our most popular articles, with over 700K social media shares.

Opening with, “This humble, but immensely powerful seed, kills MRSA, heals the chemical weapon poisoned body, stimulates regeneration of the dying beta cells within the diabetic’s pancreas, and yet too few even know it exists,” the article summarized the peer-reviewed and published research on 10 of the seed’s remarkable health benefits:

  • Type 2 Diabetes: Two grams of black seed a day resulted in reduced fasting glucose, decreased insulin resistance, increased beta-cell function, and reduced glycosylated hemoglobin (HbA1c) in human subjects.[ii]
  • Helicobacter Pylori Infection: Black seeds possess clinically useful anti-H. pylori activity, comparable to triple eradication therapy.[iii]
  • Epilepsy: Black seeds were traditionally known to have anticonvulsive properties. A 2007 study with epileptic children, whose condition was refractory to conventional drug treatment, found that a water extract significantly reduced seizure activity.[iv]
  • High Blood pressure: The daily use of 100 and 200 mg of black seed extract, twice daily, for 2 months, was found to have a blood pressure-lowering effect in patients with mild hypertension.[v]
  • Asthma: Thymoquinone, one of the main active constituents within Nigella sativa, is superior to the drug fluticasone in an animal model of asthma.[vi]Another study, this time in human subjects, found that boiled water extracts of black seed have relatively potent antiasthmatic effect on asthmatic airways.[vii]
  • Acute tonsillopharyngitis: characterized by tonsil or pharyngeal inflammation (i.e. sore throat), mostly viral in origin, black seed capsules (in combination with Phyllanthus niruri) have been found to significantly alleviate throat pain, and reduce the need for pain-killers, in human subjects.[viii]
  • Chemical Weapons Injury: A randomized, placebo-controlled human study of chemical weapons injured patients found that boiled water extracts of black seed reduced respiratory symptoms, chest wheezing, and pulmonary function test values, as well as reduced the need for drug treatment.[ix]
  • Colon Cancer: Cell studies have found that black seed extract compares favorably to the chemoagent 5-fluoruracil in the suppression of colon cancer growth, but with a far higher safety profile.[x] Animal research has found that black seed oil has significant inhibitory effects against colon cancer in rats, without observable side effects.[xi]
  • MRSA: Black seed has anti-bacterial activity against clinical isolates of methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus.[xii]
  • Opiate Addiction/Withdrawal: A study on 35 opiate addicts found black seed as an effective therapy in long-term treatment of opioid dependence.[xiii]

Since then, the biomedical research on black seed has continued to flourish, with another 78 studies published and cited on the National Library of Medicine’s biomedical database MEDLINE over the past 11 months.

Here are 16 additional potential health benefits to add to the growing list:

  1. Prevents Radiation Damage: Nigella sativa oil (NSO) and its active component, thymoquinone, protect brain tissue from radiation-induced nitrosative stress.[i]
  2. Protects Against Damage from Heart Attack: A thymoquinone extract from nigella sativa has a protective effect against damage associated with experimental heart attack.[ii]
  3. Prevents Morphine Dependence/Toxicity: An alcohol extract of nigella sativa reduces morphine-associated conditioned place preference, an indication of morphine intoxication, dependence and tolerance.[iii]
  4. Prevents Kidney Damage Associated with Diabetes: A thymoquinone extract from nigella sativa has protective effects on experimental diabetic nephropathy.[iv]
  5. Prevents Post-Surgical Adhesions: Covering peritoneal surfaces with Nigella sativa oil (NSO) after peritoneal trauma is effective in decreasing peritoneal adhesion formation in an experimental model.[v]
  6. Prevents Alzheimer’s Associated Neurotoxicity: A thymoquinone extract from nigella sativa has protective effects on experimental diabetic prevents neurotoxicity and Aβ1-40-induced apoptosis in the cell model.[vi]
  7. Suppresses Breast Cancer Growth: : A thymoquinone extract from nigella sativa inhibits tumor growth and induces programmed cell death (apoptosis) in a breast cancer xenograft mouse model.[vii] [viii]
  8. Exhibits Anti-Psoriasis Properties: The alcohol extract of nigella sativa seeds exhibit anti-psoriatic activity, consistent with its medicinal use in traditional medicine.[ix]
  9.  Prevents Brain Pathology Associated with Parkinson’s Disease: A thymoquinone extract from nigella sativa protects cultured neurons against αSN-induced synaptic toxicity, a pathology observed in the brains of patients with Parkinson’s disease and dementia with Lewy bodies.[x]
  10.  Kills Highly Aggressive Glioblastoma Brain Cancer Cells: A thymoquinone extract from nigella sativa exhibits glioblastoma cell killing activity. [xi]
  11.  Kills Leukemia Cells: A thymoquinone from nigella sativa induces mitochondria-mediated apoptosis in acute lymphoblastic leukaemia in vitro.[xii]
  12.  Suppresses Liver Cancer Growth: A thymoquinone extract from nigella sativa prevents chemically-induced cancer in a rat model.[xiii]
  13.  Prevents Diabetic Pathologies: A water and alcohol extract of nigella sativa at low doses has a blood-sugar lowering effect and ameliorative effect on regeneration of pancreatic islets, indicating its value as a therapeutic agent in the management of diabetes mellitus.[xiv]
  14. Suppresses Cervical Cancer Cell Growth: A thymoquinone extract from nigella sativa exhibits anti-proliferative, apoptotic and anti-invasive properties in a cervical cancer cell line.[xv]
  15.  Prevents Lead-Induced Brain Damage: A thymoquinone extract from nigella sativa ameliorates lead-induced brain damage in Sprague Dawley rats.[xvi]
  16. Kills Oral Cancer Cells: A thymoquinone extract from nigella sativa induces programmed cell death (apoptosis) in oral cancer cells.[xvii]

Why is such a powerful seed not yet on the radar of most medical and nutrition communities? We know sesame seed can beat Tylenol in reducing arthritis pain and can reduce cardiovascular disease risk factors in a manner that makes statin drugs envious, and we know flaxseeds shrink breast and prostate tumors, but black seed’s benefits are still largely under reported and underutilized.

Interestingly, despite this blind spot, and as if to confirm black seed’s immense potential as a healing agent, Nestlé, the Switzerland-based global food giant, filed a patent on patent on the use of nigella sativa to “prevent food allergies” in 2010 (Nestlé’s international patent publication WO2010133574). This obvious attempt to appropriate traditional knowledge and use claimed the plant seed or extract should be Nestlé’s intellectual property when used as a food ingredient or drug.  According to a Third World Network Briefing Paper from July, 2012:

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“The Swiss giant’s claims appear invalid, as traditional uses of Nigella sativa clearly anticipate Nestlé’s patent application, and developing country scholarship has already validated these traditional uses and further described, in contemporary scientific terms, the very medicinal properties of black seed that Nestlé seeks to claim as its own “invention”.

“Nestlé claims any use of an opioid receptor-stimulating compound to treat or prevent allergies, specifically thymoquinone and, more specifically, administration of thymoquinone in the form of Nigella sativa plant material (seeds).3 The type of food allergy of greatest focus is upset stomach and diarrhea.”

The good news is that no such patent has yet to win approval, and for now, this food is still freely available. For additional research updates, simply go to Pubmed.gov, and sign up for an automatic email update for the keyword “nigella sativa,” and you’ll be one of the first to learn about the new research being done on this amazing seed as it comes directly through the biomedical research pipeline.

References

[i] Adem Ahlatci, Abdurahman Kuzhan, Seyithan Taysi, Omer Can Demirtas, Hilal Eryigit Alkis, Mehmet Tarakcioglu, Ali Demirci, Derya Caglayan, Edibe Saricicek, Kadir Cinar. Radiation-modifying abilities of Nigella sativa and Thymoquinone on radiation-induced nitrosative stress in the brain tissue. Phytomedicine. 2013 Nov 21. pii: S0944-7113(13)00432-7. doi: 10.1016/j.phymed.2013.10.023. [Epub ahead of print]

[ii] Mohammad Akram Randhawa, Mastour Safar Alghamdi, Subir Kumar Maulik. The effect of thymoquinone, an active component of Nigella sativa, on isoproterenol induced myocardial injury. Pak J Pharm Sci. 2013 Nov;26(6):1215-9.

[iii] Milad Anvari, Atefeh Seddigh, Mohammad Naser Shafei, Hassan Rakhshandeh, Amir Hossein Talebi, Mohammad Reza Tahani, S Mohsen Saeedjalali, Mahmoud Hosseini. Nigella sativa extract affects conditioned place preference induced by morphine in rats. 2012 Oct;32(2):82-8. doi: 10.4103/0257-7941.118537.

[iv] Ola M Omran. Effects of Thymoquinone on STZ-induced Diabetic Nephropathy: An Immunohistochemical Study. Ultrastruct Pathol. 2013 Oct 17.

[v] Ahmet Sahbaz, Firat Ersan, Serdar Aydin. Effect of Nigella sativa oil on postoperative peritoneal adhesion formation. J Obstet Gynaecol Res. 2013 Oct 7. doi: 10.1111/jog.12172.

[vi] Norsharina Ismail, Maznah Ismail, Musalmah Mazlan, Latiffah Abdul Latiff, Mustapha Umar Imam, Shahid Iqbal, Nur Hanisah Azmi, Siti Aisyah Abd Ghafar, Kim Wei Chan. Thymoquinone Preventsβ-Amyloid Neurotoxicity in Primary Cultured Cerebellar Granule Neurons. 2013 Nov;33(8):1159-69. doi: 10.1007/s10571-013-9982-z. Epub 2013 Oct 8.

[vii] Chern Chiuh Woo, Annie Hsu, Alan Prem Kumar, Gautam Sethi, Kwong Huat Benny Tan. Thymoquinone Inhibits Tumor Growth and Induces Apoptosis in a Breast Cancer Xenograft Mouse Model: The Role of p38 MAPK and ROS.  2013 Oct 2;8(10):e75356. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0075356. PMID: 24098377

[viii] Shashi Rajput, B N Prashanth Kumar, Kaushik Kumar Dey, Ipsita Pal, Aditya Parekh, Mahitosh Mandal. Molecular targeting of Akt by thymoquinone promotes G1 arrest through translation inhibition of cyclin D1 and induces apoptosis in breast cancer cells.  2013 Nov 13;93(21):783-90. doi: 10.1016/j.lfs.2013.09.009. Epub 2013 Sep 15. PMID: 24044882

[ix] Lalitha Priyanka Dwarampudi, Dhanabal Palaniswamy, Muruganantham Nithyanantham, P S Raghu. Antipsoriatic activity and cytotoxicity of ethanolic extract of Nigella sativa seeds.  2012 Oct;8(32):268-72. doi: 10.4103/0973-1296.103650. PMID:24082629

[x] A H Alhebshi, A Odawara, M Gotoh, I Suzuki. Thymoquinone protects cultured hippocampal and human induced pluripotent stem cells-derived neurons againstα-synuclein-induced synapse damage. Neurosci Lett. 2013 Sep 27. pii: S0304-3940(13)00873-2. doi: 10.1016/j.neulet.2013.09.049. PMID: 24080376

[xi] Ira O Racoma, Walter Hans Meisen, Qi-En Wang, Balveen Kaur, Altaf A Wani. Thymoquinone inhibits autophagy and induces cathepsin-mediated, caspase-independent cell death in glioblastoma cells. 2013 Sep 9;8(9):e72882. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0072882. PMID: 24039814

[xii] Landa Zeenelabdin Ali Salim, Syam Mohan, Rozana Othman, Siddig Ibrahim Abdelwahab, Behnam Kamalidehghan, Bassem Y Sheikh, Mohamed Yousif Ibrahim. Thymoquinone induces mitochondria-mediated apoptosis in acute lymphoblastic leukaemia in vitro. . 2013 Sep 12;18(9):11219-40. doi: 10.3390/molecules180911219. PMID: 24036512

[xiii] Subramanian Raghunandhakumar, Arumugam Paramasivam, Selvam Senthilraja, Chandrasekar Naveenkumar, Selvamani Asokkumar, John Binuclara, Sundaram Jagan, Pandi Anandakumar, Thiruvengadam Devaki. Thymoquinone inhibits cell proliferation through regulation of G1/S phase cell cycle transition in N-nitrosodiethylamine-induced experimental rat hepatocellular carcinoma. 2013 Oct 23;223(1):60-72. doi: 10.1016/j.toxlet.2013.08.018. Epub 2013 Sep 3. PMID:24012840

[xiv] Samad Alimohammadi, Rahim Hobbenaghi, Javad Javanbakht, Danial Kheradmand, Reza Mortezaee, Maryam Tavakoli, Farshid Khadivar, Hamid Akbari. Protective and antidiabetic effects of extract from Nigella sativa on blood glucose concentrations against streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetic in rats: an experimental study with histopathological evaluation. PMID: 23947821

[xv] Cagri Sakalar, Merve Yuruk, Tugba Kaya, Metin Aytekin, Salih Kuk, Halit Canatan. Pronounced transcriptional regulation of apoptotic and TNF-NF-kappa-B signaling genes during the course of thymoquinone mediated apoptosis in HeLa cells. Mol Cell Biochem. 2013 Nov;383(1-2):243-51. doi: 10.1007/s11010-013-1772-x. Epub 2013 Aug 14.PMID: 23943306

[xvi] Khaled Radad, Khaled Hassanein, Mubarak Al-Shraim, Rudolf Moldzio, Wolf-Dieter Rausch. Thymoquinone ameliorates lead-induced brain damage in Sprague Dawley rats. PMID: 23910425

[xvii] Ehab Abdelfadil, Ya-Hsin Cheng, Da-Tian Bau, Wei-Jen Ting, Li-Mien Chen, Hsi-Hsien Hsu, Yueh-Min Lin, Ray-Jade Chen, Fu-Jenn Tsai, Chang-Hai Tsai, Chih-Yang Huang. Thymoquinone induces apoptosis in oral cancer cells through p38β inhibition.

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Vaccine Mandates Results Don’t Safeguard Children’s Rights or Health: How Did We Get Here?

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For decades, the U.S. government has made compulsory childhood vaccination one of the cornerstones of its public health policy. Outside the U.S., countries’ vaccination policies range from completely voluntary to “aggressive,” with some nations promoting vaccination but leaving the decision up to the individual, and others pushing a little harder by financially incentivizing vaccination. Some of the countries with mandatory vaccination have “modest” policies that focus on a single vaccine such as polio, and some—with broader mandates on the books—choose not to enforce them.

Regardless of the policy, no other country requires as many childhood vaccines as the U.S., but the legal edifice shoring up the compulsory childhood vaccine program is surprisingly flimsy. As New York University legal scholar Mary Holland explains in a 2010 working paper, this edifice relies primarily on two century-old Supreme Court decisions—from 1905 and 1922—and on the game-changing National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act (NCVIA) of 1986, which fundamentally altered the legal landscape for vaccination by exempting vaccine manufacturers and medical practitioners from liability for childhood vaccine injuries.

…current childhood mandates are not only radically different from what the earlier courts and legislators envisioned but are unreasonable and oppressive and have led to…perverse results that do not safeguard children’s rights and health.

The 1986 Act, in particular, resulted in an absence of legal protections for vaccinated children that is “striking compared to almost all other medical interventions.” Examining the legal trajectory of vaccine mandates since 1905, Holland argues that current childhood mandates are not only radically different from what the earlier courts and legislators envisioned but are “unreasonable and oppressive and have led to…perverse results” that do not safeguard children’s rights and health.

From mandates for emergencies to mandates for “prevention”

The Supreme Court’s 1905 Jacobson v. Massachusetts decision, as summarized by Holland, justified the imposition of one vaccine—smallpox—on adults “on an emergency basis” and under circumstances of “imminent danger.” At the same time, the Jacobson decision established medical exemptions, reasoning that it “would be cruel and inhuman in the last degree” to vaccinate someone who was medically unfit. Jacobson also contained “robust cautionary language,” calling attention to the potential for “arbitrary and oppressive” abuse of police power and warning against going “far beyond what was reasonably required for the safety of the public.” Jacobson urged courts to be “vigilant to examine and thwart unreasonable assertions of state power.”

Despite these words of warning, state-level courts did not wait long before broadening the judicial interpretation of Jacobson beyond the notion of imminent danger or necessity—although still within the context of just the smallpox vaccine:

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  • In 1916, Alabama and Kentucky courts affirmed states’ right to mandate vaccination for prevention of smallpox epidemics, stating that state Boards of Health “are not required to wait until an epidemic actually exists before taking action.” The Alabama court also broadened the rationale for mandates beyond adults to children.
  • In 1922, the three-paragraph Zucht v. King Supreme Court decision sanctioned vaccine mandates as a condition for public school attendance. According to Holland, this decision further shifted Jacobson’s “paradigm…by upholding a mandate exclusively for children and not for the entire population.”
  • Decisions in Mississippi and Texas in the early 1930s granted public health authorities the leeway to define public health emergencies in whatever manner they saw fit.
  • A New Jersey court in the late 1940s interpreted Jacobson as justifying all vaccine mandates, “disregarding its language to reject unreasonable, arbitrary or oppressive state actions.”
  • An Arkansas court in the early 1950s suggested that anyone questioning vaccine safety or efficacy should “lodge [their] objections with the Board of Health rather than the court.”

Occasionally, legal officials expressed their disapproval of vaccine mandates outside of emergencies, as with the North Dakota judge who, in 1919, pronounced childhood vaccination in the absence of a smallpox epidemic an act of “barbarism.” The same judge also wrote presciently about the self-interest of the medical profession and vaccine manufacturers—“the class that reap a golden harvest from vaccination and the diseases caused by it.” In comments that bear repeating today, the judge stated,

“Every person of common sense and observation must know that it is not the welfare of the children that causes the vaccinators to preach their doctrines and to incur the expense of lobbying for vaccination statutes. …And if anyone says to the contrary, he either does not know the facts, or he has no regard for the truth.”

The legal sea change in 1986

Although vaccination mandates had become legally “well-entrenched” by the mid-1950s—regardless of emergency and “all but erasing” Jacobson’s cautionary language—Holland emphasizes that this legal framework arose in the context of a single vaccine for a contagious disease considered to be life-threatening. Even when the polio vaccine subsequently came on the scene, the nonprofit organization that helped develop and distribute the vaccine “opposed compulsion on principle.”

According to Holland, the creation of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC’s) Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP)—“a federal advisory body with little public participation and no direct accountability to voters”—laid the groundwork for far more coercive vaccine policies. In fact, ACIP has become, over time, the “driving force” behind vaccine mandates. Whereas Jacobson justified mandates under specific and rare circumstances, ACIP has created an “infrastructure” that pushes mandates for any vaccine-preventable illness.

…revenue-generating vaccine development and promotion have enjoyed priority over vaccine safety science and injury compensation since the Law’s (NCVIA) inception

By 1981, after ACIP helped ensure that multiple vaccines were obligatory for school attendance in all 50 states, the number of vaccine injuries began increasing. Against this backdrop, Congress enacted the NCVIA in 1986. Although some legislators may have been well-intentioned when they passed the Act, Holland makes it clear that it has been nothing short of a disaster. In essence, the Act located “vaccine promotion, safety and compensation under one [government] umbrella,” thereby creating “the risk of trade-offs among competing goals.” The rather predictable result is that “revenue-generating vaccine development and promotion have enjoyed priority over vaccine safety science and injury compensation since the Law’s inception.”

Holland identifies the paradox at the core of the 1986 Law. On the one hand, the legislation “for the first time publicly acknowledged that universal compulsory vaccination is likely to cause permanent injury and death to some infants and children”; on the other hand, it forces healthy children to give up ordinary legal protections, including informed consent, and takes away from injured children the right to sue manufacturers directly.

Meanwhile, ACIP has continued to promote a shift away from “necessity” as the rationale for vaccine mandates. A number of the vaccines that ACIP now calls for American children to get to attend school—70 doses of 16 vaccines by age 18—are for rarely fatal illnesses and for conditions “not contagious through ordinary social contact.” Holland’s conclusion is that:

“Necessity no longer determines the validity of state childhood vaccination mandates…. New vaccine mandates are guided by financial returns on low prevalence diseases, not protection of the entire population against imminent harm.”

“Ravenous corporate greed and mindless bureaucracy”

Some of the most troubling facts come at the end of Holland’s impressive legal review and concern the power of the pharmaceutical industry. She notes:

  • The pharmaceutical industry has been the most profitable industry in the U.S. since the 1980s.
  • In a single year in the early 2000s, “the combined profits of the ten largest drug companies in the Fortune 500 had higher net profits…than all the other 490 companies [in the Fortune 500] combined.”
  • There are more full-time pharmaceutical industry lobbyists on Capitol Hill than there are legislators in both Houses of Congress.
  • The leading manufacturers of childhood vaccines in the U.S. (Merck, Pfizer, GlaxoSmithKline and Sanofi Pasteur) have records of documented fraud and criminal/ethical misconduct.

Holland also tackles the extensive collusion between the pharmaceutical industry and government regulators, including a quote about “ravenous corporate greed and mindless bureaucracy” in a related article. Whereas “demonstrably predatory corporations selling compulsory products to a vulnerable population should lead to a high level of government scrutiny and skepticism,” Holland observes that “government appears to ally its interests with industry in the arena of vaccines.”

Coercion is backfiring

Fortunately, the public and even some health professionals are growing increasingly wise to this industry-government shell game. In one community, opposition to human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine mandates recently put public health authorities on the defensive about the epidemic of autoimmunity in today’s youth, the “exorbitant” amount of neurotoxic aluminum in vaccines and the requirement to “get a vaccine for something that can’t be caught in a classroom.” A parent responding to the news article stated, “Why should I as a mother trust the Public Information Officer for the state Department of Health when he cannot even name the amount of aluminum in the vaccine?” Thus, it is up to the public—and ethical professionals—to engage in the “scrutiny and skepticism” that the U.S. government has unconscionably failed to exercise.


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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How X-Ray Mammography Is Accelerating The Epidemic of Cancer

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Article written by Sayer Ji, Founder of Greenmedinfo LLC, posted here with permission.

While a growing body of research now suggests that x-ray mammography is causing more harm than good in the millions of women who subject themselves to breast screenings, annually, without knowledge of their true health risks, the primary focus has been on the harms associated with over-diagnosis and over-treatment, and not the radiobiological dangers of the procedure itself.

In 2006, a paper published in the British Journal of Radiobiology, titled “Enhanced biological effectiveness of low energy X-rays and implications for the UK breast screening programme,” revealed the type of radiation used in x-ray-based breast screenings is much more carcinogenic than previously believed:

Recent radiobiological studies have provided compelling evidence that the low energy X-rays as used in mammography are approximately four times – butpossibly as much as six times – more effective in causing mutational damage than higher energy X-rays. Since current radiation risk estimates are based on the effects of high energy gamma radiation, this implies that the risks of radiation-induced breast cancers for mammography X-rays are underestimated by the same factor.[1]

In other words, the radiation risk model used to determine whether the benefit of breast screenings in asymptomatic women outweighs their harm, underestimates the risk of mammography-induced breast and related cancers by between 4-600%.

The authors continued

Risk estimates for radiation-induced cancer – principally derived from the atomic bomb survivor study (ABSS) – are based on the effects of high energy gamma-rays and thus the implication is that the risks of radiation-induced breast cancer arising from mammography may be higher than that assumed based on standard risks estimates.

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This is not the only study to demonstrate mammography X-rays are more carcinogenic than atomic bomb spectrum radiation. There is also an extensive amount of data on the downside of x-ray mammography.

Sadly, even if one uses the outdated radiation risk model (which underestimates the harm done),* the weight of the scientific evidence (as determined by the work of The Cochrane Collaboration) actually shows that breast screenings are in all likelihood not doing any net good in those who undergo them.

In a 2009 Cochrane Database Systematic Review,** also known as the Gøtzsche and Nielsen’s Cochrane Review, titled “Screening for breast cancer with mammography,” the authors revealed the tenuous statistical justifications for mass breast screenings:

Screening led to 30% overdiagnosis and overtreatment, or an absolute risk increase of 0.5%. This means that for every 2000 women invited for screening throughout 10 years, one will have her life prolonged and 10 healthy women, who would not have been diagnosed if there had not been screening, will be treated unnecessarily. Furthermore, more than 200 women will experience important psychological distress for many months because of false positive findings. It is thus not clear whether screening does more good than harm.[2]

In this review, the basis for estimating unnecessary treatment was the 35% increased risk of surgery among women who underwent screenings. Many of the surgeries, in fact, were the result of women being diagnosed with ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), a “cancer” that would not exists as a clinically relevant entity were it not for the fact that it is detectable through x-ray mammography. DCIS, in the vast majority of cases, has no palpable lesion or symptoms, and some experts believe it should be completely reclassified as a non-cancerous condition.

A more recent study published in the British Medical Journal in 2011 titled, “Possible net harms of breast cancer screening: updated modeling of Forrest report,” not only confirmed the Gøtzsche and Nielsen’s Cochrane Review findings, but found the situation likely worse:

This analysis supports the claim that the introduction of breast cancer screening might have caused net harm for up to 10 years after the start of screening.[3]

So, let’s assume that these reviews are correct, and at the very least, the screenings are not doing any good, and at worst, causing more harm than good. The salient question, however, is how much more harm than good? If we consider that, according to data from Journal of the National Cancer Institute (2011), a mammogram uses 4 mSv of radiation vs. the .02 mSv of your average chest x-ray (which is 200 times more radiation), and then, we factor in the 4-600% higher genotoxicity/carcinogenicity associated with the specific “low-energy” wavelengths used in mammography, it is highly possible that beyond the epidemic of over-diagnosis and over-treatment, mammograms are planting seeds of radiation-induced cancer within the breasts of millions of women.***

With the advent of non-ionizing radiation based diagnostic technologies, such as thermography, it has become vitally important that patients educate themselves about the alternatives to x-ray mammography that already exist.  Until then, we must use our good sense – and research like this – to inform our decisions, and as far as the unintended adverse effects of radiation go, erring on the side of caution whenever possible.

Additional Reading

Is X-ray Mammography Findings Cancer or Benign Lesions?

The Dark Side of Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Does Chemo & Radiation Actually Make Cancer More Malignant?


*This discrepancy in radiation risk models/estimates follows from two fundamental problems: 1) the older risk model was based on higher-energy radiation emissions, such as are given off from atomic bomb blasts 2) it was a crude model, developed before the discovery of DNA and a full understanding of radiotoxicity/genotoxicity.

** Keep in mind that the Cochrane Database Review is at the top of the “food chain” of truth, in the highly touted “evidence-based model” of conventional medicine. Cochrane Database Reviews are produced by The Cochrane Collaboration, which is internationally recognized as the benchmark for high quality, evidence-based information concerning the effectiveness (or lack thereof) of common health care interventions. The organization, comprised of over 28,000 dedicated people from over 100 countries, prides itself on being an “independent” source of information, and historically has not been afraid to point out the corrupting influence of industry, which increasingly co-opts  the biomedical research and publishing fields.

***The low-energy wavelengths cause double strand breaks within the DNA of susceptible cells, which the cell can not repair. Through time these mutations result in “neoplastic transformation”; radiation has the ability to induce a cancerous phenotype within formerly healthy cells that has cancer stem cell-like (CSC) properties.


[1] Enhanced biological effectiveness of low energy X-rays and implications for the UK breast screening programme. Br J Radiol. 2006 Mar ;79(939):195-200. PMID: 16498030

[2] Screening for breast cancer with mammography. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2009(4):CD001877. Epub 2009 Oct 7. PMID: 19821284

[3] Possible net harms of breast cancer screening: updated modelling of Forrest report. BMJ. 2011 ;343:d7627. Epub 2011 Dec 8. PMID: 22155336


Sayer Ji is founder of Greenmedinfo.com, a reviewer at the International Journal of Human Nutrition and Functional Medicine, Co-founder and CEO of Systome Biomed, Vice Chairman of the Board of the National Health Federation, Steering Committee Member of the Global Non-GMO Foundation.

If you want to learn more from Greenmedinfo, sign up for their newsletter here

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The demand for Collective Evolution's content is bigger than ever, except ad agencies and social media keep cutting our revenues. This is making it hard for us to continue.

In order to stay truly independent, we need your help. We are not going to put up paywalls on this website, as we want to get our info out far and wide. For as little as $3 a month, you can help keep CE alive!

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Why Water Fluoridation Is A Forced Experiment That Needs To Stop

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The United States stands almost entirely alone among developed nations in adding industrial silicofluorides to its drinking water—imposing the community-wide measure without informed consent. Globally, roughly 5% of the population consumes chemically fluoridated water, but more people in the U.S. drink fluoride-adulterated water than in all other countries combined. Within the U.S., just under a third (30%) of local water supplies are not fluoridated; these municipalities have either held the practice at bay since fluoridation’s inception or have won hard-fought battles to halt water fluoridation.

Dozens of studies and reviews—including in top-tier journals such as The Lancet—have shown that fluoride is neurotoxic and lowers children’s IQ.

The fluoride chemicals added to drinking water are unprocessed toxic wasteproducts—captured pollutants from Florida’s phosphate fertilizer industry or unregulated chemical imports from China. The chemicals undergo no purification before being dumped into drinking water and often harbor significant levels of arsenic and other heavy metal contamination; one researcher describes this unavoidable contamination as a “regulatory blind spotthat jeopardizes any safe use of fluoride additives.”

Dozens of studies and reviews—including in top-tier journals such as The Lancet—have shown that fluoride is neurotoxic and lowers children’s IQ. Fluoride is also associated with a variety of other health risks in both children and adults. However, U.S. officialdom persists in making hollow claims that water fluoridation is safe and beneficial, choosing to ignore even its own research! A multimillion-dollar longitudinal study published in Environmental Health Perspectives in September, 2017, for example, was largely funded by the National Institutes of Health and National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences—and the seminal study revealed a strong relationship between fluoride exposure in pregnant women and lowered cognitive function in offspring. Considered in the context of other research, the study’s implications are, according to the nonprofit Fluoride Action Network, “enormous”—“a cannon shot across the bow of the 80 year old practice of artificial fluoridation.”

According to declassified government documents summarized by Project Censored, Manhattan Project scientists discovered early on that fluoride was a leading health hazard to bomb program workers and surrounding communities.

A little history

During World War II, fluoride (a compound formed from the chemical element fluorine) came into large-scale production and use as part of the Manhattan Project. According to declassified government documents summarized by Project Censored, Manhattan Project scientists discovered early on that fluoride was a “leading health hazard to bomb program workers and surrounding communities.” In order to stave off lawsuits, government scientists “embarked on a campaign to calm the social panic about fluoride…by promoting its usefulness in preventing tooth decay.”

To prop up its “exaggerated claims of reduction in tooth decay,” government researchers began carrying out a series of poorly designed and fatally flawed community trials of water fluoridation in a handful of U.S. cities in the mid-1940s. In a critique decades later, a University of California-Davis statistician characterized these early agenda-driven fluoridation trials as “especially rich in fallacies, improper design, invalid use of statistical methods, omissions of contrary data, and just plain muddleheadedness and hebetude.” As one example, a 15-year trial launched in Grand Rapids, Michigan in 1945 used a nearby city as a non-fluoridated control, but after the control city began fluoridating its own water supply five years into the study, the design switched from a comparison with the non-fluoridated community to a before-and-after assessment of Grand Rapids. Fluoridation’s proponents admitted that this change substantially “compromised” the quality of the study.

In 1950, well before any of the community trials could reach any conclusions about the systemic health effects of long-term fluoride ingestion, the U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS) endorsed water fluoridation as official public health policy, strongly encouraging communities across the country to adopt the unproven measure for dental caries prevention. Describing this astonishingly non-evidence-based step as “the Great Fluoridation Gamble,” the authors of the 2010 book, The Case Against Fluorideargue that:

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“Not only was safety not demonstrated in anything approaching a comprehensive and scientific study, but also a large number of studies implicating fluoride’s impact on both the bones and the thyroid gland were ignored or downplayed” (p. 86).

In 2015, Newsweek magazine not only agreed that the scientific rationale for putting fluoride in drinking water was not as “clear-cut” as once thought but also shared the “shocking” finding of a more recent Cochrane Collaboration review, namely, that there is no evidence to support the use of fluoride in drinking water.

Bad science and powerful politics

The authors of The Case Against Fluoride persuasively argue that “bad science” and “powerful politics” are primary factors explaining why government agencies continue to defend the indefensible practice of water fluoridation, despite abundant evidence that it is unsafe both developmentally and after “a lifetime of exposure to uncontrolled doses.” Comparable to Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.’s bookThimerosal: Let the Science Speak, which summarizes studies that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and “credulous journalists swear don’t exist,” The Case Against Fluoride is an extensively referenced tour de force, pulling together hundreds of studies showing evidence of fluoride-related harm.

… death rates in the ten most fluoridated U.S. states are 5% to 26% higher than in the ten least fluoridated states, with triple the rate of Alzheimer’s disease.

The research assembled by the book’s authors includes studies on fluoride biochemistry; cancer; fluoride’s effects on the brain, endocrine system and bones; and dental fluorosis. With regard to the latter, public health agencies like to define dental fluorosis as a purely cosmetic issue involving “changes in the appearance of tooth enamel,” but the International Academy of Oral Medicine & Toxicology (IAOMT)—a global network of dentists, health professionals and scientists dedicated to science-based biological dentistry—describes the damaged enamel and mottled and brittle teeth that characterize dental fluorosis as “the first visible sign of fluoride toxicity.”

The important 2017 study that showed decrements in IQ following fluoride exposure during pregnancy is far from the only research sounding the alarm about fluoride’s adverse developmental effects. In his 2017 volumePregnancy and Fluoride Do Not Mix, John D. MacArthur pulls together hundreds of studies linking fluoride to premature birth and impaired neurological development (93 studies), preelampsia (77 studies) and autism (110 studies). The book points out that rates of premature birth are “unusually high” in the United States. At the other end of the lifespan, MacArthur observes that death rates in the ten most fluoridated U.S. states are 5% to 26% higher than in the ten least fluoridated states, with triple the rate of Alzheimer’s disease. A 2006 report by the National Research Council warned that exposure to fluoride might increase the risk of developing Alzheimer’s.

The word is out

Pregnancy and Fluoride Do Not Mix shows that the Institute of Medicine, National Research Council, Harvard’s National Scientific Council on the Developing Child, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and National Toxicology Program all are well aware of the substantial evidence of fluoride’s developmental neurotoxicity, yet no action has been taken to warn pregnant women. Instead, scientists with integrity, legal professionals and the public increasingly are taking matters into their own hands. A Citizens Petitionsubmitted in 2016 to the EPA under the Toxic Substances Control Act requested that the EPA “exercise its authority to prohibit the purposeful addition of fluoridation chemicals to U.S. water supplies.” This request—the focus of a lawsuit to be argued in court later in 2019—poses a landmark challenge to the dangerous practice of water fluoridation and has the potential to end one of the most significant chemical assaults on our children’s developing bodies and brains.

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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