Sugar and Spice, and Everything (Not) Nice

Another group of scientests has done a study of High Fructose Corn Syrup, and confirmed what the first set found: mercury is in more than one-third of HFCS in your grocery store, and at rather high doses. Move over vaccines: slide on in, Welch's grape jelly, Quaker Oatmeal and Hershey's Chocolate Syrup. We've got a whole new group of contestants to blame for autism and mercury-poisoning.

We all know that HFCS isn't one of the better sugars for our bodies, even my grandmother knew that, but who knew that it was actually toxic? Raise your hands. Anybody?

"Mercury is a potent brain toxin that we know accumulates in fish and seafood, although diet is not the only route by which we are exposed. When babies are exposed to elevated mercury in the womb, their brains may develop abnormally, impairing learning abilities and reducing IQ. For these youngest children, the science increasingly suggests there may be no “safe” level of exposure to mercury.

And yet for decades an increasingly common ingredient in processed foods, HFCS, has been made using mercury-grade caustic soda. Caustic soda (also known as sodium hydroxide or lye) and a number of other food industry ingredients are produced in industrial chlorine (chlor-alkali) plants. “Mercury-grade,” also known as “rayongrade”caustic soda, comes from chlorine plants still using an outdated 19th century technology that relies on the use of mercury. While most chlorine plants around the world have switched to newer, cleaner technologies, some still rely on the use of mercury." (From the report, link below)

This is just another example of how much better fresh, organic produce is for you. When you make your food from scratch, and you know the ingredients (even better if you know the farmer!) you have a much better chance of keeping poisons off the table, not to mention lowering your carbon footprint and supporting local commerce.

And of course, it is another example of how the FDA and USDA have failed us. Again. They actually have known about the mercury present for four years, and done nothing to alert consumers or remove it from products. They are still doing nothing. Call the companies. Call the FDA. Call your representatives - or email the president and your reps at congress.org. And maybe then, someone will do something. Myself, I am going to tell my mother, because she works as a high-level consultant for the World Bank, and from a waste management perspective these products are leaching mercury into the ground water all over the country once they are thrown into landfills, and so she can work it on getting it banned it from that end.

For more information from the study, and a list of the worst HFCS offenders check out these links. http://www.healthobservatory.org/library.cfm?refid=105026 & http://www.healthobservatory.org/library.cfm?refID=105040.

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