Is the glyphosate in our food sabotaging all our weight-control diets?

Every New Year, a fresh crop of diet books promises new fat-melting systems to heal our holiday dining indiscretions. The market for such books is literally huge: Nearly 40% of American adults are obese. Our kids are fattening, too. However, not even one of this season's "discoveries" reveals the most sinister fat-inducing agent. It's hidden in most American food. Glyphosate. It sabotages the best-intended diets.

Dec. 31, 2017   By Jerry Carlson — One of this season's weight-loss nostrums is "The Economist's Diet," due for release Jan. 2 by publisher Touchstone. Economists Chris Payne and Rob Barnett claim you can mini-feast over the holidays, as long as you mini-fast later. Counting calories is what matters, not what you eat. In a Dec. 22 Wall Street Journal essay they write, "Between the two of us, we have shed 120 pounds and have remained at our healthier weights for years. We did this not by following any particular diet but by seeing how economic forces contributed to our overeating and how economic principles could help us to develop better habits."

Opposing that argument is "Why You Eat What You Eat" by Rachel Herz, a university professor who says that after indulgences, you'll probably not mini-fast in penance — at all. Herz recommends a list of psychological maneuvers you can use to achieve diet discipline. (So far I've never found the "eating discipline" pill.)

On the final day of 2017, Sumanthi Reddy writing in the Wall Street Journal cites a Salk Institute study of 156 people's eating habits showing that about 10% of the 156 individuals restricted their eating within a 12-hour span. These people improved their weight control. Thus, here's their claim to a secret formula: Eat what you want, but only within a 12-hour time frame. 

Meanwhile our Federal government has not sent its health cavalry, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, to rescue the nation's midsection. Nor has the American Medical Association conducted epidemiology research to track down the underlying causes of obesity, which surely must count as one of our most dangerous diseases.

Not even the "Blue Zones" national non-profit health effort — one of the most practical and logical healthy diet approaches — recommends avoiding genetically modified foods, which are the most likely to contain glyphosate residues. 

Instead, the complex cause-and-effect chain of metabolic action triggered by glyphosate is left to be ferreted out by a few independent, often-maligned scientists and physicians. Glyphosate is one of the "active ingredients" in Roundup weedkiller. It was  originally patented as a bactericide and it is one of the world's most potent bactericides. The chemical industry claims that no lab studies prove glyphosate impacts the microbial mix of humans' digestive tracts. However, evidence keeps accumulating in real people's health experience that it does have negative effects. Here are some of the courageous scientists and physicians braving bitter opposition: 

Dr. Anthony Samsel, an independent research scientist, has his own laboratory where he has analyzed glyphosate's impact on human gut bacteria. He traces its impacts on the chain reactions of enzymes which control digestion and restricts fat metabolism. The body, hampered from burning fat for energy, stores it in body tissue instead. Here's a link to one commentary on that sequence. The link connects to Dr. Samsel's YouTube video explaining this connection.

We've referred to Dr. Samsel and co-researcher, Dr. Stephanie Seneff, in an earlier report at this link. This Renewable Farming report contains links to several relevant scientific papers backing up their evidence.

Dr. Michelle Perro, a California pediatrician, teamed with science writer Vincanne Adams to write the just-released book, "What's Making Our Children Sick? How Industrial Food Is Causing an Epidemic of Chronic Illness, and What Parents (and Doctors) Can Do About It."

We've followed the work of Dr. Perro more than a year as she assembled the evidence in her own practice: Sick, obese kids come to her clinic. They follow an organic, plant-centered diet, and get well. This is not "scientific" evidence, but the clinical result is meaningful to the rescued families involved. I recommend that you read the very convincing, real-life body of evidence in this book.

Personally, because of diet alone, my weight dropped from just over 200 pounds to my high school fullback weight of 150 pounds. That was two years ago, starting at age 79. With the wonderful help and inspiration of my wife, we both followed the Gerson Therapy of organic, fruit/vegetable diet. My motivation: Looking at an MRI that showed "intense" metastatic bone cancer plus a sacrum packed with hardening cancer tumors. My primary physician said, "I'll schedule you to see an oncologist so you can know how much time you have left." His implication: you have a couple months to live. Maybe. I did not see an oncologist. No chemo. No radiation. With diet alone, my health stabilized, then gradually improved. Years-old problems, like a painful rotator cuff and sleep-robbing sciatic spasms, have faded almost totally. The body wants to heal, if you provide it with abundant nutrition and aggressive detoxification.  However, not many people have the discipline to follow the Gerson Therapy. Old eating habits hold most of us captive.

As my health and energy improve approaching age 82, I find it tempting to snitch a meatball and cheese during holiday festivities. And a little verboten dressing on salads. I'll probably pay the price. But I don't intend to become an absolute captive to a rigid diet, either. That's one good part about being almost 82. There's a sense of freedom.