resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Apple Takes a Bite Out of Research
The more than 700 million iPhone users have just been given the opportunity to "do their part to advance medical research."
If Your Pro-Chiropractic Governor Resigned, Would You Be Prepared?
John Kitzhaber, MD, recently re-elected to a historic fourth term as Oregon governor, has resigned among alleged ethics violations by his fiancée' and first lady, Cylvia Hayes. I developed a personal friendship with John and consider him a good friend.
The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine
My Masters thesis was titled, "The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine," which highlighted several reasons why it is hard for these two worlds to mix.
5 Tips for Using Pinterest to Market Your Practice
Pinterest is a very popular, but often under-utilized, social media platform where people can bookmark, or "pin," fun and interesting things from all across the internet.
How Much Do You Know About the Benefits of Birds Nest?
Edible bird's nest is the nest made by the Swiftlet bird of Southeast Asia that is usually prepared as a soup and prized in Chinese culture as a healthful delicacy.
Make Every Day Mother's Day
May is a special month for many reasons. After a long, harsh winter, spring is at last in full swing. Memorial Day helps us honor those who have fought and fallen in the name of freedom.
News in Brief
Dr. Frank Nicchi Receives Award at ACC-RAC; Sherman College Expands International Influence.
Integrating Art with Clinical Practice for Patients with PTSD: The Artemis Project
Are you restricted by those one-on-one clinic dynamics? Why not join colleagues and clients in experimental group settings? Three of us volunteered to do just that in Austin on behalf of women veteranss from all branches of the service.
Talking to Patients About Medial Branch Neurotomy (Part 2)
Even when lumbar facet denervation (medial branch neurotomy) is successful, relief is rarely complete or permanent. Smuck, et al., reviewed 16 articles and found the average duration of >50 percent pain relief for an initial procedure was nine months.
Applauding a Legacy of Leadership
Founding Palmer West President, John Miller, DC, HCD (Hon.), FICA (Hon.), a 1954 graduate of Palmer College of Chiropractic, passed away March 8, 2015 at age 83.
Functional Impingement of the Hip (Part 2): Rehab Exercises
I find functionally impinged hips that don't move properly on so many of my patients. (See part 1 of this article for a description of the condition.)
Teach Your Patients About External Healing Applications
Since the skin is the body's largest organ, and is able to respond to both internal and external stimulations, communicate sensations to the brain, protect the body, breathe and even excrete toxins, it can be an excellent source of healing.
Medicine is Clumsy, Don't You Be
All medical systems have clumsiness in them. If the technique isn't, the practitioner is. Everyone in every form of medicine is striving to improve. That is why we call it practice.
Trouble in the Wellness Waters?
Call me old-fashioned, paranoid or just old, but I do remember graduating from chiropractic college in the late '70s in the midst of the Wilk v AMA lawsuit.
The Tide is Rising in the Acupuncture Profession
Former President Ronald Regan said, "When the tide rises all boats float." The tide is rising for the acupuncture profession. Many forces outside the profession are helping the tides to rise.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
Animal Acupuncture: A Case Study in the Treatment of Traumatic Injury in the Equine
The rise of animal acupuncture in the U.S. began in the early 1970's as a result of the work by members of the National Acupuncture Association in Westwood, Calif.
Marijuana, Apathy and Chinese Medicine, Part 1
This article was written in response to the unheeded acceptance of marijuana as a harmless substance that potentially does good when used for the medical relief of pain.
PCOM Granted Regional Accreditation
Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM) recently announce it has received regional accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). This achievement reflects five years of hard work on the part of faculty, staff, and students.
June, 2005, Vol. 05, Issue 06
Frankenfoods Upon Us
By Andrew Rader, LAc, MS
Editor's note: This article originally appeared in the Jan. 2005 issue of Acupuncture Today. Visit Acupuncture Today online at www.acupuncturetoday.com.
Genetically modified organisms (GMOs), genetically engineered (GE) foods and crops, biotech foods and crops, transgenic foods, "Frankenfoods" - these are all synonyms for the same thing: an unprecedented new technology that inserts genetic material from one organism into another.GE foods are here, their effects largely unknown and unexplored, and they are being foisted upon a predominantly unsuspecting public by large corporations.
The Europeans, Japanese and Australians aren't having any of it. Here in the United States, however, GE foods are already a large chunk of our diets (if we are not eating organically), and the scary part is that the purveyors of these products don't want us to know we're eating them. Not since the great debate on nuclear power at the end of the 1970s has such a potentially devastating technology been introduced. The proponents of biotech foods and crops claim that they are safe, will produce more food at less cost, and will help the environment. I will attempt to show that the case for GMOs is just the opposite.
What exactly is this new technology?
Basically, molecular biologists take a portion of DNA from a donor species and, using a vector, such as a bacteria, "insert" the foreign DNA into a target species. EPA toxicologist Suzanne Wuerthele stated, "It's the biological equivalent of splitting the atom."
While scientists can be fairly precise about excising the DNA they want from the donor, they cannot control the insertion of the foreign DNA into the target organism. The authors of Genetically Engineered Food: A Self-Defense Guide for Consumers put it like this: "In other words, they are firing the gene gun with little idea where the payload of desired traits will crash through the cell walls of the host organism and begin to disrupt its complex biochemical matrix. This random shotgun-like insertion inevitably causes a disruption of the order and balance of the genes on the host chromosome and can readily result in random and unexpected changes in the biochemical functioning of the cells."
This imprecision, much like "smart" bombs, causes collateral damage. The damage in this case is the unpredictable disruption in the biochemical functioning of the host cell. In one case, a yeast that was genetically altered became a toxic chemical factory. An accidental disruption in its metabolism led to a 40- to 200-fold increase in the production of methylglyoxal (MG), a toxic substance. The variation (40-200 fold) and the toxicity point to the unpredictable and potentially harmful results of this technology.
GE is not just a continuation of what traditional plant and animal breeders have been doing for centuries, as some proponents argue. Traditional crop breeding does not fundamentally alter or manipulate the genetic material of the organism. In nature, one species cannot reproduce with another species. Humans mate with humans, pigs with pigs, fish with fish, and corn with corn; not tomatoes with lizards, spiders with squash, or hyenas with figs. GE goes beyond the natural barriers of propagation. To break through this previously un-breached border may release a Pandora's box of unintended consequences. Among the major downsides to genetically modified and engineered products:
According to data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture from 1999 (which can be assumed to be much worse now), GE crops account for 57 percent of the U.S. soybean crop; 38 percent of the U.S. corn crop; 65 percent of the U.S. cotton crop; and 4 percent of the U.S. potato crop. In addition, over 50 percent of the U.S. and Canadian canola crops are genetically modified, and over 500,000 cattle in the U.S. have been injected with recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH or RBST), which has been banned in Europe, Canada, and every other industrialized nation, except the U.S.
The British Medical Association has called for a moratorium on all GE foods because of the question of safety. In 1999, 231 scientists from 31 countries published an "open letter to all governments," calling for a worldwide moratorium on all GE foods and crops. Specifically, the possibility of horizontal gene transfer has the potential to create new pathogenic viruses.
This past fall, in Hawaii, it was discovered that non-GE papaya seeds, some of them organic, were found to be contaminated from GE papayas. Also this past fall, scientists in Oregon found pollen from Monsanto's GE herbicide-tolerant bentgrass had cross-pollinated with natural bentgrass 13 miles away. Monsanto created "Roundup Ready" bentgrass for golf courses and private lawns.
Throughout North America, cross-contamination is being discovered in organic, wild and non-GE plants by GE corn, canola, cotton and soybean. Dumping of GE corn by the U.S. on Mexico is causing widespread contamination of the indigenous maize varieties. Widespread contamination of organic crops in Canada has lead Canadian farmers to sue Monsanto and Aventis (Bayer). In China, it was discovered that over a million GE trees were planted in the open environment, with no plan to monitor the impact on the ecosystem. The most well-known example of GMOs run amok: monarch butterfly larvae that were killed by GE corn pollen.
There is no "paper trail." There is no labeling, so consumers don't know what they are eating. The corporations that have invested billions of dollars in this technology have lobbied Congress and the executive branch successfully to hide their product in our food.
When faced with a new and potentially harmful technology or product, we must invoke the "precautionary principle," which assumes guilt until proven innocent. What to do? Contact organizations that are at the forefront of this issue, and advocate for moratoriums and labeling until the time that this technology can be shown to be worth our while:
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