The Enigma of Cell Phone Safety

By Dr. Mercola

Most conventional experts don’t view cell phone exposure as a problem, mainly because they only look at one component of cell phone safety.

Their focus is on the thermal effects of cell phones and how your body absorbs the radiofrequency energy. The industry insists that because the energy of the fields is too low to cause heating of tissues, it can’t have any biological effect.

These thermal or tissue heating effects are measured and assigned a rating known as SAR, which stands for Specific Absorption Rate.

SAR Ratings
Industry suggests you compare SAR ratings, but the numbers are meaningless
When buying a wireless phone, the industry suggests you compare ratings and purchase one with a lower rating.

Please understand that the SAR rating by itself is virtually worthless.

The SAR level only estimates the heat from the radiation penetrating into your head from a cell phone – just ONE component of concern!

The SAR level does not measure the risk from the frequencies of the cell phone, the erratic pulsing and modulation of the signals, or the magnetic fields created by the batteries.

Scientists now know that many of the effects from cell phones are non-thermal. In other words, they occur at levels too low to cause significant heating to tissues.

What You Need to Know About Cell Phone Radiation

The frequency of a cell phone’s waves falls between those emitted by FM radios and those from microwave ovens, all of which are considered “non-ionizing” forms of radiation.

When you make a call, text, or use data on your cell phone, here’s what happens:

Your phone sends radiofrequency, or RF waves from its antenna to nearby cell towers, and receives RF waves in return to its antenna.

If you are holding the phone next to your face, as most people do, then about 70 percent of the energy from the antenna is absorbed straight into your head.

As you can see from the diagram below, age makes a difference in how much of this energy can be absorbed into the tissue. A younger child’s skull is much thinner than an adult’s and still developing, therefore more radiation is able to penetrate the brain.

It’s not until around age 20 that your brain is fully developed.

These visual images should serve as a powerful reminder to parents that it’s never a good idea to allow a child to talk on a cell phone held close to the head!

Mobile Phone Radiation

As you move your cell phone away from your head, this radiation decreases rapidly. So, clearly, the further away from your body you can keep your phone, the better.

Incidentally, the manufacturer of one of the top-selling cell phones advises against direct body contact with their phones. This is what they say right on their website:

“To reduce exposure to RF energy, use a hands-free option, such as the built-in speakerphone, the supplied headphones, or other similar accessories. Carry phone at least 5mm away from your body to ensure exposure levels remain at or below the as-tested levels.”
One of the most important bits of advice I can give you is to avoid holding your phone directly against your head, especially while your call connects—which is when the power surge is greatest.

Using your speakerphone function or a safe headset to keep your phone a safe distance away from your body is a much better option.

But Why Does the Wireless Industry Still Insist Cell Phones Are Safe?

You can search online and find study after study that says cell phone usage is safe. The wireless industry claims that thousands of studies have failed to pinpoint adverse effects.

But, is that really true?

First you need to dig deep and find out who funded the study. If it’s an industry-funded study, the results presented are just about guaranteed to favor the industry. Why would they publish results that didn’t?

But just because countless studies might conclude “no risk found,” it doesn’t mean those were the real scientific findings of the investigation!

Cell Phone Safe?
The earlier one starts using cell phones, the more harmful its potential effects can be
Dr. Henry Lai, a University of Washington scientist in cellular and molecular engineering, reviewed 85 papers on the DNA-damaging effects of cell phone radiation. He and his colleague had found from their own research that cell phone radiation could cause DNA damage in brain cells.

What did he find when he took a closer look at these studies?

A whopping three-fourths of the papers that showed no toxic effects were funded either by the wireless industry or the military. Eighty percent of those that showed potential negative effects were not linked to the industry.

Even Time reported:

Independent studies on cell phone radiation found dangers at more than twice the rate of industry-funded studies.

We’re talking about a very lucrative industry here… The total revenue of the U.S. mobile wireless industry is over $171 billion!

Could it be that the wireless industry may be twisting science just enough to dodge or at least postpone regulation? They do have a lot at stake…

The 2011 Ruling That Delivered a Major Blow to the Wireless Industry

As cell phone usage around the world expands, evidence continues to mount against their safety, even though the industry still insists cell phones are safe.

Possibly the biggest blow to the industry came in 2011 when the International Agency for research on Cancer (IARC), an arm of the World Health Organization (WHO), declared cell phones a Class B carcinogen.

This classification puts cell phones squarely in the same category of certain pesticides and heavy metals as well as engine exhaust.

But that’s not all… There are now more than 20,000 publications in the scientific literature that show significant biological effects at exposures well within safety standards, including about 4,000 that include non-thermal effects.

How Cell Phones Impact Your Cells’ Energy Centers – Your Mitochondria

Mitochondria Cell Phones Impact
Cell phones have been shown to harm your cells’ mitochondria
Your body uses electrical fields to communicate between your cells. The electromagnetic fields emitted by the phones are far more damaging to your body because they interfere with your body’s own cellular communication.

Another major way cell phones can potentially impact you is through their effect on your mitochondria within your cells.

Most of your cells have several hundred mitochondria. Over 90% of the energy that your body needs to function properly comes from the mitochondria, so their well-being is essential to your energy production.

Not only are they your body’s primary source of energy, your cells’ mitochondria determine the speed at which your body ages. If your mitochondria are working optimally, your body ages at a normal rate.

Researchers have discovered that the radiation from cell phones can harm your mitochondria, including flipping certain genes within the mitochondria.

As important as your mitochondria are to your health, this potential damaging effect on genes is very concerning to me.

Is the Newest Technology Any Safer?

Industry tries to assure us that third and fourth generation cell phones are safer in terms of non-ionizing radiation.

But are they really?

There’s no proof that 3G or 4G is any safer, and if anything, the preliminary research suggests they may be even less safe.

Here’s the problem…

Today’s standards for radiofrequency emissions weren’t designed for cell phones.

Rather, the current federal standards were developed to guard against thermal effects, but remember, as I explained above, that’s not the issue. As we’ve already seen, most of the studies on cell phones show non-thermal effects.

What’s worrisome now is that evidence is suggesting exposure to cell phone radiation can have biological effects without raising temperature.

Radio frequency waves from cell phones have also been shown to produce “stress” proteins in human cells, proteins that the body produces for self-protection.

I agree that getting rid of your cell phone is probably not an option these days. Today’s cell phones are much more than phones – they’re often your camera, video recorder, hand-held computer, and your lifeline to staying in touch with your work and family.

But with all this distressing data and questionable research, there must be something we can do to help minimize exposure. I believe there is…

How to Minimize Cell Phone Radiation Emissions

Cell Phone Dangers while driving
Not only is direct cell phone contact dangerous, using one while you drive is like driving impaired
So what can you do to make cell phone usage safer for yourself and your family?

First and foremost, I recommend you consider not allowing your child or pre-teen to have a cell phone.

For teens, I encourage you to educate them on the dangers of holding or storing a cell phone close to their bodies and to remind them to use a safe headset if they need to make a call.

And, no one should ever use one while driving, including texting.

Here are some additional suggestions for minimizing your exposure to cell phone radiation:

Reduce your cell phone usage. Turn your phone off when you don’t need it.
Use your cell phone on speakerphone whenever possible. Avoiding contact with your head is the most important safeguard you can take.
Keep your phone as far away from your body as possible. There’s a significant drop-off in radiation exposure for every inch your phone is away from your body. Don’t stow your cell phone in your pocket!
Don’t place your phone against your head while the call is connecting. This is when your phone is sending out its strongest signal and you don’t want this surge of radiation penetrating your head!
Use a landline at home and at work. Just because everyone else goes cordless, you don’t need to.
Avoid using your cell phone if reception is poor. The weaker the reception, the more power your phone uses to transmit, and the more exposure you receive.
Limit cell phone use in your car. The metal parts of your car – the roof, doors, and chassis can magnify the radiation. Plus your phone has to work harder and increase its transmitting strength as you travel between cell towers.
If you must make a call unprotected, limit it to less than two minutes. Radiation exposure is dose-related. The longer you spend on your phone, the more potentially harmful microwave radiation you’re exposed to.
Use low power Bluetooth® technology or a headset to keep your phone away from your body. But just remember that if you use your Bluetooth® or headset a lot, you are still exposed to radiation right near your head.
For the ultimate in safety, use an air tube headset that’s specially designed to reduce cell phone radiation. In just a minute, I’ll tell you about the one I use.

Why I’ll Only Use a Headset That’s Specially Designed to Reduce Radiation

Before I carefully studied this issue, I used my cell phone regularly and thought my off-the-shelf headset protected me from my phone’s emissions.

However, I soon discovered that:

Cell phones emit a radiation plume.

Most cell phone headsets have a wire that can act like an antenna and magnify the radiation emissions.
The wireless industry – and the government – is suppressing a great deal of scientific data to protect multi-billion dollar profits.
And then I saw this alarming evidence… Through the use of thermographic imaging, scientists can see the changes take place inside your brain when you use a cell phone directly against your head.

Instead of seeing “cool” blues and greens that are present in your brain when you’re not exposed to cell phone radiation, scientists saw reds, yellows and oranges which graphically display internal heating of your tissues and cells after only 15 minutes of cell phone use.

Until recently, scientists believed that these changes and cell phone-related interference with brain waves and brain chemistry ended when the call ended. Now they know it can last for up to an hour.

If you don’t know where it’s from – Don’t Eat It!!

Genetically modified food impossible to avoid unless you buy organic, Britons warned

BUYING organic meat, eggs and milk is the ONLY way to avoid genetically modified produce, Britons have been warned.
By ALIX CULBERTSON

image-1
It is increasingly difficult to avoid produce from livestock fed GM crops and it is in most meat sold in restaurants and supermarkets, the National Farmers’ Union conference heard yesterday.
A shocking 80 per cent of maize and soya beans, which are the main sources of food for cattle, are now GM due to the global nature of food sold in British supermarkets and on the wholesale market.

GM crops are not being grown in the UK, apart from a few small batches at research centres, but many shoppers are unwittingly buying GM-fed produce.
David Hughes, professor of food marketing at Imperial College London, said: “We find it convenient not to make a big noise about it.”

Fast-food giant McDonald’s admitted to using beef from cows raised on GM crops.
Connor McVeigh, director of supply chain at McDonald’s UK, said he knew customers did not want GM ingredients bit it was “becoming increasingly difficult to source non-GM feed within our supply chain”.

image-2
UK supermarkets have admitted although they do not sell GM foods, many of the meat products are fed GM crops after a pledge to ensure farm animals were reared on a GM-free diet was dropped in 2013.
With 90 per cent of North and South America’s soya bean crop being GM, it is difficult to get away from the crops which have DNA which does not occur naturally.

Peter Melchett, of the Soil Association, said British animals should be fed domestic vegetables instead of GM crops from the United States and Brazil.
He said: “When you buy a steak, how do you know what the animal has been fed on? It could have been fed on Welsh grass or it could be beef fed on Brazilian soya which is GM.
“Nobody is going to tell you. Are we too childish or infantile to be told this?”

image-3
He said the British public should be told what they are buying as there are potential health risks to humans eating GM-fed meat.
There are also concerns over an excessive use of weedkillers on soy production in the Americas, both for animal feed and human consumption.
Mr Melchett added: “If it’s so wonderful, let people choose.”

image-4
2013 marked the year GM became especially prevalent in Britain, with supermarkets dropping their non-GM feed pledge, and Owen Paterson, the former Tory environment secretary saying “not a single” steak in Lodnon restaurants was not made from GM-fed cattle.
At the end of last year, 19 European Union (EU) member states signed up to rules introduced six months before which permits individual EU countries to ban cultivation of GM crops.
Germany, France, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales were among those who signed up, but it does not stop GM feed being used.
A proposal was put forward in early 2015 by the European Commission to introduce an opt-out provision on GM feed but this was rejected over fears it would hit the meat-trade.
British supermarkets are clear they sell GM-fed meat and the only way to avoid it is to buy organic.
Morrison’s website, says: “Like other supermarkets, we are unable to guarantee that GM animal feed is not used in the supply chain for meat and dairy products, unless it’s organic.
“Such a promise would add to the strain on farmers and increase the pressure on food prices, given the declining availability of guaranteed non-GM feed.”
Waitrose says: “We fully understand that some customers would like a wider choice of produce from animals fed on a non-GM diet.
“With that in mind, all the animals that supply our organic meat, eggs and milk are fed a non-GM diet.”
Sainsbury’s website says: “We do not permit the sale of own brand food, drink, pet food, dietary supplements or floral products that contain GM material.
“We are also aware that some customers have concerns regarding products from animals that may have been fed a diet containing GM material. As part of offering a choice to our customers, we offer a range of own brand organic products which guarantees the animals are fed a non-GM diet.”
The Food Standards Agency (FSA) said GM crops are “considered to be as safe as food from animals fed on non-GM crops.”
But, it said a review by the European FSA had found it is “possible that DNA fragments derived from GM plant materials in feed may occasionally be detected in animal tissues.”

“Extreme” Levels of Roundup Detected in Food—Are You Eating This Toxic Contaminant?

organic

By Dr. Mercola

In 2009, a French court found Monsanto guilty of lying; falsely advertising itsRoundup herbicide as “biodegradable,” “environmentally friendly” and claiming it “left the soil clean.”

We’re now starting to understand just how false such statements are. For example, last summer, a groundbreaking study revealed a previously unknown mechanism of harm from glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup.

The research showed that glyphosate residues, found in most processed foods in the Western diet courtesy of GE sugar beets, corn, and soy, “enhance the damaging effects of other food-borne chemical residues and toxins in the environment to disrupt normal body functions and induce disease.”

More recently, a Norwegian study published in Food Technology1 found that genetically engineered (GE) soy contains high levels of glyphosate, along with a poorer nutritional profile, leading the researchers to question its quality and safety.

Evidence also suggests glyphosate may be a key player in Argentina’s growing health problems, where birth defects and cancer rates have skyrocketed among GE corn and soya farming communities.

If You Eat Processed Food, You’re Eating Glyphosate

While nearly one billion pounds of glyphosate is doused on both conventional and GE crops worldwide each year, GE crops receive the heaviest amounts. It’s important to realize that processed foods undoubtedly expose you to this toxic contamination, courtesy of the soy and vegetable oil used.2

Ditto for meats from animals raised in confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs), as soy is a staple of conventional livestock feed. As noted in the featured article by Rodale News:3

“That herbicide-laced soy winds up in thousands of nonorganic packaged foods and in animal feed for livestock like pigs, cows, chickens, and turkeys.

Why is this happening? Genetically engineered crops are manipulated in a way that could never occur in nature so plants like corn, soy, canola, cotton, and sugar beets can withstand high doses of glyphosate-containing herbicides that would normally kill them. The result? Roundupin food that people and farm animals eat.”

Beware: Glyphosate Is a Systemic Contaminant

It’s quite crucial to understand that glyphosate contamination is systemic, meaning it is present in every cell of the plant, from root to tip. It’s not just an issue of topical contamination, as with many other agricultural chemicals sprayed on crops.

Normally, you need to thoroughly wash your produce to remove topical residues, but you simply cannot remove glyphosate from your produce. And neither can food and animal feed manufacturers who use GE ingredients in their products.

This is a major reason for avoiding processed foods, over and beyond the fact that processed foods are less healthy for you from a nutritional standpoint.

Making matters worse, while evidence is piling up showing the hazards of glyphosate on human health, farmers are ramping up their usage of the chemical due to the proliferation of resistant weeds, and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently raised the allowable levels of glyphosate in food by significant amounts.4, 5

Allowable levels in oilseed crops such as soy were doubled, from 20 ppm to 40 ppm just lasts summer. It also raised the levels of permissible glyphosate contamination in other foods—many of which were raised to 15-25 times previous levels.

GE Soy Is NOT ‘Substantially Equivalent’ to Non-GE Soy, Researchers Say

The Norwegian study in question investigated contamination levels and nutritional contents of three varieties of Iowa-grown soybeans:6 Roundup Ready soybeans; non-GE, conventional soybeans grown using Roundup herbicide; and organic soybeans, grown without agricultural chemicals.

On average GE soy contained 11.9 parts per million (ppm) of glyphosate. The highest residue level found was 20.1 ppm. Meanwhile, no residues of either kind were found in the conventional non-GE and organic varieties. (Similar results were found in a 2012 nutritional analysis of GE corn, which was found to contain 13 ppm of glyphosate, compared to none in non-GMO corn.)

Such revelations have serious implications for Americans who eat an average of 193 pounds of genetically engineered foods each year.7 In an article for The Ecologist,8 two of the researchers point out that these levels are actually double, or more, of what Monsanto itself has referred to as “extreme levels:”

“All of the individual samples of GM-soy contained residues of both glyphosate and AMPA, on average 9.0 mg/kg. This amount is greater than is typical for many vitamins.

Monsanto (manufacturer of glyphosate) has claimed that residues of glyphosate in GM soy are lower than in conventional soybeans, where glyphosate residues have been measured up to 16-17 mg/kg (Monsanto 1999).

These residues, found in non-GM plants, likely must have been due to the practice of spraying before harvest (for desiccation).

Another claim of Monsanto’s has been that residue levels of up to 5.6 mg/kg in GM-soy represent ‘…extreme levels, and far higher than those typically found.’ (Monsanto 1999).” [Emphasis mine]

The researchers also found nutritional differences between the three types of soy. Compared to conventionally grown non-GE and GE soy, organic soybeans contained higher levels of protein and zinc, and lower levels of omega-6. According to the authors:9 “This study rejects that GM soy is ‘substantially equivalent’ to non-GM soybeans.”

Toxicity of Roundup Has Been Vastly Underestimated

The Norwegian researchers also point out that the potential toxicity of Roundup has likely been vastly underestimated, as toxicity cannot be attributed solely to the active ingredient, glyphosate.

“When regulatory agencies assess pesticides for safety they invariably test only the claimed active ingredient. Nevertheless, these do not necessarily represent realistic conditions since in practice it is the full, formulated herbicide (there are many Roundup formulations) that is used in the field. Thus, it is relevant to consider, not only the active ingredient, in this case glyphosate and its breakdown product AMPA, but also the other compounds present in the herbicide formulation since these enhance toxicity,” they write.10

So, when you see “inert” or “inactive ingredients” listed on the label of a pesticide or herbicide, please understand that all this means is that those ingredients will not harm pests or weeds. This is how federal law classifies “inert” pesticide ingredients.11 It does NOT mean that those ingredients are not harmful to YOU, your children, or your pets.

Indeed, one 2012 study12 revealed that inert ingredients such as solvents, preservatives, surfactants and other added substances are anything but “inactive.” They can, and oftentimes do, contribute to a product’s toxicity in a synergistic manner—even if non-toxic in isolation. Certain adjuvants in glyphosate-based herbicides were also found to be “active principles of human cell toxicity,” adding to the hazards inherent with glyphosate. It’s well worth noting that, according to the researchers, this cell damage and/or cell death can occur at the residual levels found on Roundup-treated crops, as well as lawns and gardens where Roundup is applied for weed control.

They also suspect that Roundup might cause miscarriages and abnormal fetal development by interfering with hormone production13 — problems that have skyrocketed in Argentina, following the introduction of GE soy. A toxic combination of Roundup and fertilizers has also been blamed for tens of thousands of deaths among farmers in Sri Lanka, India, and Central America’s Pacific coastline (El Salvador, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica).

Birth Malformation Skyrocketing in Agricultural Centers of Argentina

As noted in the featured BBC radio report14 above, Argentina has become one of the world’s largest producers and exporters of GE soy and corn, and along with it, the country has experienced an explosion of miscarriages, fertility problems, and abnormal fetal development. In the province of Chaco, birth defects have quadrupled in the decade following the introduction of GE crops.15

“[T]here is unease across the nation’s vast GM belt, especially about health. In the northern province of Chaco, the minister of Public Health wants an independent commission to investigate cases of cancer and the incidence of children born with disabilities,”BBC reports.16 “Pressly interviews the University of Buenos Aires Dr. Andres Carrasco, who published a study in 2010 showing that glyphosate can cause birth defects in animal embryos.

Pressly asks Carrasco — what should have happened after you published your paper? ‘Very easy,’ Carrasco says. ‘The governments in Argentina — they should call for a moratorium.’ ‘But you then call the whole of the model into question — what does that mean for Argentina’s economy?’ Pressly asks. ‘What about if we are poisoning our people?’ Carrasco asks.”

More than 18 million hectares in Argentina are covered by GE soy, on which more than 300 million liters of pesticides are sprayed. In the village of Malvinas Argentinas, which is surrounded by soy plantations, the rate of miscarriage is 100 times the national average, courtesy of glyphosate. According to Dr. Medardo Vasquez, a neonatal specialist at the Children’s Hospital in Cordoba, featured in the documentary film People and Power — Argentina: The Bad Seeds:

“I see new-born infants, many of whom are malformed. I have to tell parents that their children are dying because of these agricultural methods. In some areas in Argentina the primary cause of death for children less than one year old is malformations.”

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