By Dr. Mercola Opioid addiction is at an all-time high in the U.S., and according to many addiction specialists, pain and hopelessness are primary drivers of this burgeoning crisis.1 Limiting the availability of opioids and making overdose-reversal drugs and treatment for drug addiction more readily available are part of the answer. But it’s not enough. We have to take a much deeper look at the root of the problem. What is causing all this physical pain and emotional distress in the first place? Clearly, the U.S. health care system is grossly ineffective when it comes to addressing chronic health problems. Whether pain is promoting hopelessness or the other way around is difficult to ascertain, but the two appear to be closely intertwined and need to be addressed together. Somehow or another, we need to refocus our efforts to create lives worth living, and improve access to and information about basic disease prevention, which begins with diet and basic lifestyle choices — the kin
By Dr. Mercola Lead has a cumulative effect on multiple organ systems in your body and is particularly harmful to young children. After it enters the body, it is distributed through the brain, kidney, liver and bones, and is often stored in the bones and teeth.1 There is no known safe exposure to lead, which often affects young children and lower socioeconomic groups the hardest. However, humans have a long and intimate relationship with lead, dating back to 3000 B.C. when the Roman Empire used it to create pipes for their plumbing and to sweeten wine that they then shipped all over Europe.2 Documents from that period report symptoms of colic, anemia and gout attributed to overexposure to lead. Some historians even believe lead poisoning hastened the fall of the Roman Empire. The oldest known piece made of lead is a figurine from 4000 B.C., found in Egypt.3 In more recent years, the durability of the heavy metal made it an excellent additive to paint, and the chemical properties made
By Dr. Mercola The first large-scale animal farm factories appeared in the early 1970s,1 designed for egg-laying hens. However, it wasn’t long before beef and pork producers followed suit with the aim to reduce overhead and increase profits, which also reduced the quality of the meat produced. Today, most meat sold in the U.S. is raised in concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs). In a corporate-controlled environment characterized by large-scale, centralized production, companies — not farmers — have identified means of production, processing and distribution that produce more meat for less money. The repercussions associated with these farms have included a rise in antibiotic-resistant disease claiming the lives of nearly 23,000 Americans each year,2 and a significant impact on local water supply from waste water runoff from these farms.3,4 Both of these concerns are driving significant global issues with water quality and antibiotic-resistant bacterial disease. Although t
By Dr. Mercola In May 2016, I urged you to pressure poultry giant Sanderson Farms to come to its senses and join other major poultry producers in taking proactive steps to reduce its antibiotic use. Remarkably, the company not only decided not to reduce its usage but also took the step of going public with its decision to continue using antibiotics, saying the antibiotic-free chicken trend is nothing but a marketing ploy devised to justify higher prices. According to Lampkin Butts, president and chief operating officer of Sanderson Farms, “There is not any credible science that leads us to believe we’re causing antibiotic resistance in humans.”1 Yet, when the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) conducted an analysis of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) testing for multidrug-resistant E. coli on Sanderson Farms’ chicken, they found otherwise. Sanderson Farms’ Refusal to Cut Antibiotics in Chicken Is Dangerous Eighty percent of the antibiotics used in the U.S. ar
By Dr. Mercola Industrial agriculture, characterized by concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) and vast swatches of genetically engineered (GE) monocrops, are touted as necessary to feed the world. At one time not long ago, it was up to small family farms to provide the food for nearby communities and ensure food security for the U.S. In an essay adapted from John Ikerd’s presentation at the 10th Annual Farm and Food Leadership Conference — Farm Policy at a Crossroads: A Time to Choose — it’s explained:1 “U.S. farm policies from the 1930s through the 1960s were premised on the proposition that food security could best be assured by keeping independent family farmers on the land. Family farmers had been the cultural foundation of American society and were committed to maintaining the productivity of their land — not only for the benefit of their families and communities but also for the food security of their nation.” Since the 1970s, however, farm policies have o
How Organic Is Your Organic Milk?
By Dr. Mercola There are astonishing arrays of vegetables in the world of every shape and color, each representing an amazing commodity. It’s incredible that you can put seeds in the ground, give them adequate sunlight and water, and in a matter of weeks or a few months, you have instant food, which your body needs to thrive. Vegetables contain vitamins, minerals, nutrients and phytonutrients, such as antioxidants, sulforaphane, isothiocyanates, anthocyanins, carotenoids and a host of other beneficial compounds to provide energy, help your body fight disease, increase your immune function and perform a myriad of other tasks. Carrots, one of the sweetest vegetables, are also one of the most popular plant-based foods. They’re unique for several reasons, but perhaps one of their most important calling cards is beta-carotene, which can’t be manufactured in your body, so it needs to come from your diet. In the days of the Romans and Greeks, carrots were believed to be an aphrodisiac, which