Friday, January 30, 2009

Vox Clamantis In Deserto/Ad Astra Per Aspera

I know I am not the only one. For that I am grateful. But there are certainly times where I feel that I am, in the words of my alma mater's motto, "the voice of one crying in the wilderness." In our modern society I have many days where I am told I am the one who is color blind--that the light is red when I know it is green. When the Man Behind The Curtain says that everything is alright and I should just go along with the program (sometimes this comes from our government--through agencies such as the FDA and USDA--supporting the cause of huge businesses and sometimes this comes from corporations themselves). That I should buy fake butter (margarine) instead of real butter because somehow Man has improved upon Nature.

So it is with much disturbing food news lately:
High fructose corn syrup, which we feed in huge amounts to Western children. It is in so many products one can barely list them all, but let's start with baby formula, cereal, bread, lunch-meat, ketchup and, of course, soda. And now we find that it not only has mercury--a potent neurotoxin--in it, but that this has been known and that the information was basically suppressed. And that the FDA is not doing anything definitive about it--other than to try and reassure us that things are not what they seem. Never mind that we have been telling pregnant women and mothers to avoid all fish in order to avoid the same toxin . . . Could it be that the corn/HFCS industry is just too huge a financial interest? Nah.

And what about Peanut Butter? Another recent revelation is that a huge amount of the nation's peanut butter has been tainted with salmonella. Nothing new--we are getting used to these contaminated-food statements (unless you happen to be or be related to one of the people who have been sickened or died, in which case this is new and incredibly pertinent). Again, this has not only been known for months, it also turns out that the plant producing this peanut butter has had over a dozen known instances of salmonella over the last eight years! And that they were allowed to keep sending this tainted food out to be made into peanut butter crackers and cookies and other "foods" for our children.

Who could make up these stories? Knowingly allowing corporations to sell tainted food to a nation's children--this seems like a story-line from a less evolved society. I am being kind, trying to avoid using the word "evil", but it's so hard when this all looks so very much like conspiracy with a profit motive. And then add the sometimes violent suppression of our rights to access real food, such as raw milk (which is only available from small producers) . . . it does begin to look like large business has succeeded in controlling food policy and oversight. Remember the raid on the Ohio food coop last Fall? What about the various raids on raw milk farmers in Pennsylvania? I am beginning to think my parents were right in the 70's--our only food security will come from producing food ourselves or accessing small and local producers.

I thought my folks were a bit crazy then, but now I find myself trying to recover and teach as many age-old food preparation skills as possible. I am making every effort to source local food, to know the farmers, to encourage friends with land to raise chickens and grow fruits and vegetables. I am teaching people to make lacto-ferments and to use every scrap of the food that they have. This is not an effort to do historical reenactment for some sentimental reason. We need to do this so that we can continue to eat. We cannot depend on the huge concerns that have taken over Western food production to provide for us, to protect us. I am not sure if government "oversight" or the end of oil will do us in first, but I want us all to be ready, to teach our children and each other how to find and make real food. I dream that this will all change, that we will again become a nation of small farmers and local foodsheds. But, in the meantime, I am not taking any chances.

In order to create this new/old ideal, we have to fight an entrenched system of cheap pseudo-food and strange regulations. We have to educate ourselves. We have to take responsibility for our food. None of this is easy, but it will pay off in the end with real health and independence. Which brings to my mind another motto: Ad astra per aspera (To the stars through difficulties). Won't you join me in this revolution of recovering the Old Ways?

For more information and perspectives (just a small sampling):
A great blog post on HFCS/mercury at Crunchy Domestic Goddess
A New York Times editorial on the peanut issue
An aritcle on raw milk politics("Raw Milk and the Sour State"--you have to download the article from the web magazine)

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Thursday, January 29, 2009

Mandatory Vaccines, religious rights, HUMAN rights . . .

This WAPF Action Alert memo just arrived in response to invasive--and possibly illegal--procedures being used to "test" parents' sincerity before deciding whether or not to allow religious exemptions for immunization in NY (there is no provision for philosophical exemptions in NY, and medical ones are very hard to obtain). 

Just watching the YouTube video linked below made me queasy.  It could happen in FL (where we have no philosophical exemptions) if there were minor changes in how the exemptions are granted.  We all need to use our voices to claim the rights that are ours but seem to be eroding quickly before our eyes.  I am not sure it matters much what flavor of politician we have in office--this is about corporate control of our bodies, minds, spirits--a bipartisan endeavor!

Dear Weston A. Price Member:

Parents in NY State who choose to opt out of mandatory vaccines for their children, are being subjected to intrusive "sincerity tests" of their religious beliefs. In the State of NY, a religious exemption is the only way to opt out of vaccines you don't deem necessary or safe for your child, unless you qualify for a medical exemption, which is nearly impossible to receive, due to pressure on doctors.  To address this unconstitutional practice, a new bill is about to be presented to the floor of the NY State Assembly.  It's presentation to lawmakers is generally accompanied by "Memorandums of Support" (bill memos) from concerned citizens and groups.  The impact that these bill memos have is enormous, as all assemblypersons are provided copies of all bill memos when they receive their bill packets, prior to the bill's presentation on the Assembly floor.  Please join the parents of NY in support of legislation to end this abusive scrutiny of conscience.


The following links offer some basic background information on this important issue:

You Tube Video of Aggressive Interrogation of Parents-A Must See!

Kimberly Hartke, WAPF Publicists' Blog Post on the Issue:


We need for you to send in a bill memo.   Below are samples of bill memos from organizations and individuals, to guide you as to format.  SHORT IS OK.  THE NEW BILL NUMBER for the religious exemption bill is A.883

- If you are an individual:
You must write to your representative asking for his/her support and vote for the bill when it comes to the floor of the Assembly.  State why you think the bill is important, including whether you have been subjected to sincerity testing yourself, or other relevant experience or information.  It is best to keep in mind this bill's goals.  You must also write to Richard N. Gottfried, Chair, NYS Assembly Committee on Health,; the Speaker of the Assembly, Sheldon Silver or you can make them a "cc."  You can find your representative at  or

- If you are an organization that is NATIONAL,
then write a memo and urge your NY affiliate, if you have one, to write a memo, or put both your names on it.  In fact, a memo can have more than one organization's name on it, if that is helpful to save time (but may be more work).

- If you are an out-of-state organization with national readers (like PROVE),
urge your NEW YORK STATE MEMBERS OR READERS to follow instructions for "individual."  There is no reason to have people from out of state write, unless the person is a leader of a national organization or a well-known organization.

- If you are an MD, do all.  IF YOU ARE AN M.D. WITH a professional affiliation that would support either or both bills,
get those memos done from your organization if possible, otherwise, from yourself.
The memos must be sent to the office of: (Richard N. Gottfried, Chair, NYS Assembly Committee on Health),; the Assembly Majority Leader, Ron Canestrari, ; the Speaker of the Assembly, Sheldon Silver ; and to your representative, who you can find at  or

People who do not have email can send the letters addressed to the appropriate legislator, at Legislative Office Building, Albany, NY 12248.  Letters may also be faxed.

Please post this information as widely as you can.


Here is an example of an individual Memo of Support for you to send to the above elected officials:

January 26, 2009


School Vaccination Religious Exemption
A.883 (Gottfried, et. Al)

We would like to express our enthusiastic support for the above referenced bills.  We applaud Assemblyman Gottfried's initiative and responsiveness.  It is past time that New York ended the widespread practice of sincerity testing of parents who claim religious exemption to vaccine requirements.  Such actions represent a clear violation of 1st Amendment rights and as such, are clearly out of step with the state's real mandate, which is to protect the health of children.  Defending against such action is incredibly costly, leaving all but the most financially secure families in a catch 22 (pay for a lawyer against a school system with unlimited resources or pay for private school).  It is such tactics that have spurred 19 states to pass philosophical exemptions in order to protect families from such shameful bullying.  Sadly, New York is not yet among them.

We look forward to the Assembly's passage of this bill and hope that these improved protections of the constitutionally guaranteed right to religious freedom will free parents from this appalling struggle.  If New York is really committed to protecting the health of its children, then Commissioner Daines should refocus his efforts toward supporting local, sustainable agriculture, farm to school lunch programs and the institution of a statewide Junk Food tax.  Such measures will have a significantly more powerful impact on protecting the immune systems, and therefore the overall health, of New York's children.  The present philosophy of mandating vaccination is based on fear and inadequate clinical data and serves only to enrich pharmaceutical firms, who, thanks to legislation enacted by former President Bush, enjoy COMPLETE FEDERAL IMMUNITY from any and all litigation arising from reactions suffered by vaccine recipients.  Please take this opportunity to show that New York's government does not pander to such powerful special interests, but instead, responds to the real needs of the citizenry.


Organizations wishing to see a boilerplate version of a support memo may contact Deverell Pedersen

If you wish to removed from the WAPF action alert list, email
You are subscribed to this list as  To unsubscribe, send email to

Our postal address is
PMB #106-380
4200 Wisconsin Avenue, NW
Washington, District of Columbia 20016
United States

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Tuesday, January 27, 2009

"Children should be allowed to go barefoot in the dirt, play in the dirt, and not have to wash their hands when they come in to eat'

A nicely done article reiterating what our first naturopath told us years ago:  every child should eat a pound of dirt in his/her lifetime.  Dirt is GOOD for us.  And the kicker, not only are there beneficial bacteria, viruses and yeasts--there are also beneficial worms!  Yay for relaxed parenting:  saves time, avoids hassles, grows healthy kids.

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Friday, January 23, 2009

Wild Food is Free Food: How to be Green, Cheap, and Healthy!

I have always wanted to be a forager--not only is the food fresh and local, but in the most real way possible foraging puts us in tune with our hunter-gatherer forbears.   Our family has small ways of doing this already:  collecting blackberries next to the laundromat in Washington this summer provided us with many lovely desserts, and dandelions were everywhere.  Here in Miami we can collect sea purslane (Sammy brought me some from the beach recently, which ended up in a salad, tasting a bit like olives), sea grapes on walks, and of course, tons of backyard fruit, gleaned from friends and family.  These are things which involve almost no effort, as they are right in front of our faces.  With more knowledge and preparation we can fish, collect mushrooms (in wooded places--not really a Miami thing), wild coffee (definitely a Miami thing), learn the local herbs and "salad-worthy" greens . . .

This article from Chelsea Green list some of the wild foods that are available--and more nutritious than cultivated ones!  It also lists resources for learning more about foraging and the foods themselves.  Some areas have experts that host "herb walks" or "edible weed" walks--try to find a mentor for your explorations, both for companionship and for to safely identify the edible foods.

Let's become a nation of people who rediscover the natural world around us, not only to revive our spirits, but also to nourish our bodies.  Without planting a thing, your yard may already be capapble of feeding you.  We have Suriname cherries and purslane in our urban duplex's tiny patch of a yard.  Try looking with new eyes, and see what food there is for the taking around you!

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Sunday, January 18, 2009

Are we a "stupid, fat, obedient population, turned into slaves without knowledge of what masters (we) serve"?

A must read, for succinctly describing how we got into this distorted mess, where fake food is pushed in preference to real, and a population is medicated into silence starting in childhood:

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Friday, January 16, 2009

SSRIs--SSRLies--Mike Adams on saving our kids (sadly funny)

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Toxemia Prevention: rediscovering what our Grandmas knew

Although Dr. Briffa does not mention it, traditional pregnancy foods have long supported this finding.  I well remember being told to drink milk, and I craved sardines and salmon (canned, with the bones).  Add bone broth and seaweeds and you have some heavy duty calcium foods to choose from.  Getting the Ca from foods, rather than supplements means that you also get the naturally occurring co-factors in the proper ratios.


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Thursday, January 15, 2009


Correction:  over 430 ill, five deaths.

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Illness from . . . peanut butter?

Just saw this:

If it was raw milk you can bet it would be all over the news--if only one person had been sickened.   Why haven't we heard about this, with over 40 deaths?  Commercial food is scary.  Don't eat things with from factories . . .

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Now, for the Back Story on GM foods . . .

"There is a revolution happening in the farm fields and on the dinner tables of America -- a revolution that is transforming the very nature of the food we eat.

THE FUTURE OF FOOD offers an in-depth investigation into the disturbing truth behind the unlabeled, patented, genetically engineered foods that have quietly filled U.S. grocery store shelves for the past decade."

Watch the first segment here:

Go here for more information, and to order the complete film:

Help fight the silent takeover of our food supply!  Don't buy GM foods . . .

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The Future of Food? I think we might be there now!

A great metaphor for Western "Food" as product of corporations, not farms:

(originally seen at, from my Twitter pal @FPOE_)

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Monday, January 12, 2009

Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride on "Gut and Psychology Syndrome"--help for autism, allergies, IBD, CFS, and more.

Dr. Campbell-McBride is helping people who have been abandoned by the medical system, people who have been told their (or their children's) conditions are incurable, chronic, or "in their head."  The power of food to heal is absolutely astounding.  We do NOT have to "just live with" these conditions.

The original links I had for these files (from the 2007 WAPF conference)  may not be working, so here are new ones that I just tested:

WAPF2007 GAPS part1
WAPF2007 GAPS part2


WAPF2007 GAPS part1 6203.mp3
WAPF2007 GAPS part2 6219.mp3

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Friday, January 9, 2009

“My lads don’t like to kill an animal if it’s not going to be eaten”

After a discussion with some friends the other day about not wasting fresh road kill (some areas have a formal notification list for interested recipients, or donate the fresh meat to a food bank), comes this article, sent to me by my ever vigilant husband, @ddrummer

Though this is not about road kill, it is about using what we have, and about broadening our very narrow tastes at the same time.  C'mon, how many of you blanch at the idea of eating insects?  I know I do, even though my brain tells me they are a ubiquitous source of nutrient dense food in these times of scarcity. 

So who's up for trying some squirrel?

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Thursday, January 8, 2009

Grass Fed Meat: Our True Environmental Savior

I always love to read this online publication, Nourished Magazine. The articles and blog posts not only inform but they also call into question many of our reflexively held beliefs.  They challenge and maybe even irritate.  That's how we grow--by examining our beliefs, adjusting and discarding the ones that really don't hold true any longer, by strengthening the ones that were on the right track but might have needed refining.  I hope that I am able to help people do that in my own writing and I know that the article below will make us all stretch a little, out of what we comfortably "know" to be true into a sightly dangerous place where we form our own opinions based on new information.  It's kind of like trying new foods as a kid:   "Go on, take one bite" can lead to an appreciation of new tastes--and in the end, to true nourishment.  Go on, take a bite!

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Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Cod Liver Oil, Raw Milk and more! Another spin on the controversies…

I just received this update from the Weston A. Price Foundation.  It is full of important news for us all:

January 2009

Several weeks ago we sent out an update on vitamin A and cod liver oil to all our members, in response to a negative article about cod liver oil by John Cannell of the Vitamin D Council.  This update is now posted on our website at The important take-home message is that there is nothing in the new study authored by Cannell and others to indicate any toxicity whatsoever from cod liver oil; however, the authors have put a politically correct spin on the findings in order to frighten people away from this life-giving superfood and vector them into taking isolated vitamin D instead.

Now Dr. Joe Mercola has come out with his own anti-cod liver oil statement, based on Cannell's study.  What particularly concerns us is not the fact that Dr. Mercola has a different opinion on the subject, but that he has completely misrepresented the teachings of the Weston A. Price Foundation, stating that the Foundation believes ". . . there is sufficient vitamin A in the diet of most Americans, especially if they are taking a multivitamin."

The crux of our teachings at WAPF is that there is NOT sufficient vitamin A in the diet of most Americans, especially in comparison to the diets of healthy primitive peoples. Vitamin A was plentiful in the diets of primitive peoples because they ate the liver of sea and land animals, animal fats such as seal oil, candle fish oil and butter from grass-fed animals, and other rich sources such as fish eggs and fish heads. It is difficult to see how investigators can claim that vitamin A is toxic when traditional diets were so rich in this nutrient.  As most modern people do not eat these foods, at least not in abundance, we recommend cod liver oil to supply vitamin A, as well as other fat-soluble nutrients.

Also, we have NEVER recommended multivitamins! We recommend nutrient-dense food (such as cod liver oil).

Not all cod liver oils are created equal. It is important that cod liver oil contain sufficient vitamin D to balance the vitamin A content. Please visit our cod liver page at

We are planning a long article on cod liver oil, including a point-by-point rebuttal of Mercola's statement, in the Spring 2009 issue of Wise Traditions.

ZRT Laboratories now provides an inexpensive, in-home accurate test for vitamin D [25(OH)D].  Normally this test is $100-$200 and requires a doctor's visit.  The ZRT test can be done at home and costs $65 (or 4 for $55 each) at the link:
You can order them through the lab directly, cost $135, by calling the company in Beaverton, Oregon at 1-866-600-1636.

The test involves collecting a few drops of blood after a finger prick and sending the blotter paper back to ZRT in the postage-paid envelope provided with the kit.  Your results will be sent to you by mail in about a week.

We'd like as many members as possible to participate in some research on vitamin D, which we will be able to use in our upcoming article on cod liver oil.  Please take the ZRT test and send us the results along with the brand and amount of cod liver oil you are taking, as well as any other vitamin D supplements. Please let us know how long you have been taking these products. We'd like to compile this information by early February. (We'll keep your details confidential, of course.) This is the perfect time to do this research since few of us are spending much time in the sun right now.

The journal Clinical Infectious Diseases has just published a very unscientific anti-raw milk article that ends with a most inappropriate threat.  According to the authors, "physicians, veterinarians, and dairy farmers who promote, or even condone, the human consumption of unpasteurized milk and dairy products may be at risk for subsequent legal action." The article is a model of industry agenda posing as science.  We have posted a detailed response at

The credits for this article are most interesting.  The authors thank John Sheehan, FDA head of dairy and egg safety "for valuable discussions on the subject during the preparation of the manuscript." We have effectively stymied Sheehan with our careful rebuttals of his official statements (posted at Funding in partial support of the article was provided by state and federal funds allocated to the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, Wooster, Ohio. (In Ohio, cow share programs are booming after an attempt by the Ohio Department of Agriculture to criminalize them was defeated in court.)

The Weston A. Price Foundation has begun to receive funds earned when our members use rather than the more popular search engines.  WAPF receives about 1.3 cents per search on the Yahoo-powered search engine and about three percent of purchases made through their online retail partners, from Amazon to Zappos.

You can help support the Foundation with every internet search or purchase.  Just go to to register and select your charity, and then use the search engine for your internet searches and purchases.

As we informed you in an earlier email, is a private website that has a section of their website devoted to voting for the top ten ideas for change. We encouraged our members to vote for "Legalize Raw Milk" during the first round of voting and this issue got the highest number of votes in its category!

We now have a second chance to vote for legalizing raw milk in individual states and across state lines.  If this issue is among the top ten ideas in the competition, it will be presented to the Obama team and also at a press conference at the National Press Club on January 16; further, will then email information about our campaign to their 200,000 members.

DON'T WAIT!  Please go to and cast your vote for raw milk.  If you have not yet joined, you will need to do so-the process is very simple.  Voting closes on January 15.

Please get every member of your family to vote for raw milk and circulate this announcement to all your groups.  Let's aim for tens of thousands of votes for raw milk and earn this fantastic publicity opportunity.  We can do it if everyone participates.

And while you are casting your vote for raw milk, please also cast your vote against the National Animal Identification System (NAIS).  The link is  Let's send a strong message to the USDA against radio chipping of our animals and registration of our farms!

Midwest raw milk dairy farmer Max Kane, who credits raw milk with saving his life, is traveling across the U.S. powered exclusively by raw milk.  You can follow his progress at He is raising funds to produce a documentary on raw milk.  He will end his odyssey in Malibu, California at the home of Aajonus Vonderplanitz on Sunday, January 25, 2009.

Max will be toting a few glass jars and reloading his Raw Milk supply as he travels from farm to farm during his journey across the nation.  Max will update the world of his travels live every Wednesday 4:30pm-5pm (CST) via internet radio with The Pursuit of Health's host Jay Cruz.

The Board of Directors and Staff at the Weston A. Price Foundation wish you a healthy and prosperous new year!

Sally Fallon Morell, President
Kathy O'Brien Kramer, Office Manager

Our postal address is
PMB #106-380
4200 Wisconsin Avenue, NW
Washington, District of Columbia 20016
United States

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Monday, January 5, 2009

Please Save Y/our Food! Please!

I try not to post rants and too many entreaties to sign this and that, but please, this is important.  Tom Vilsack is a huge sellout choice for Secretary of Agriculture, and the opposite of what Obama seemed to be suggesting he would do.  This man is evidently a "mouthpiece for Monsanto" (see this commentary: <>) and other agribusiness enterprises, exactly the opposite direction we need to be headed.

So sign the petition to block his appointment.  Please.

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Hidden Dangers in Kids' Meals

This is a short video on GM foods threatening our kids, from Jeffrey Smith, who wrote Seeds of Deception, and heads the Institiute for Responsible Technology

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