April 2012


Natural salt is unrefined; often gray in colour and the granules are moist and stick together somewhat. Natural salt contains sodium and minerals in balance; often the sodium content is less than 50%. Natural salt is good for us to eat in small quantities.

On the other hand refined salt is generally 95 to 99% sodium – the minerals are stripped away through a heating process that changes the molecular structure.

Income potential doubles for the product as nigari and sodium can then be sold instead of just one item.

Salt has long been used for its healing properties

There has been a plethera of new salt companies open in the Caribbean over the last 20 years. Most of these companies offer a gourmet natural sea salt; if only someone in Dominica could do that!

Companies producing salt in the Caribbean; each company lists their process and they are all very different from high tech to recycled glass panes from hurricane damage.

Cayman Islands

Haiti

Bonaire

When I travelled through the Caribbean in 1980/81 studying the use of herbs in daily life, vegetarian cooking and sustainable living I talked to elderly people who still remembered gathering their own salt by the sea.

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We are putting chemicals originally developed as neuro toxins in the second world war on our food and therefore in our food, our rivers, our soil and our oceans. This affects those who apply the chemicals, and those who consume them as well as those who are nearby when the application is happening or afterwards.

The following information is a copy and paste from Medscape, I have highlighted a few sentences

Authors:

Frances M Dyro, MD  Associate Professor of Neurology, New York Medical College; Neuromuscular Section, Department of Neurology, Westchester Medical Center

Organophosphates (OPs) are chemical substances originally produced by the reaction of alcohols and phosphoric acid. In the 1930s, organophosphates were used as insecticides, but the German military developed these substances as neurotoxins in World War II. They function as cholinesterase inhibitors, thereby affecting neuromuscular transmission.

Organophosphate insecticides, such as diazinon, chlorpyrifos, disulfoton, azinphos-methyl, and fonofos, have been used widely in agriculture and in household applications as pesticides. Over 25,000 brands of pesticides are available in the United States, and their use is monitored by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Diazinon was sold in the United States for 48 years with 14.7 million pounds sold annually. It was the most widely used ingredient in lawn and garden sprays in the United States. Diazinon was found under the brand names Real Kill, Ortho, and Spectracide. In the past decade, the EPA reached an agreement with the pesticide industry to end the production of diazinon by March 2001 for indoor use and June 2003 for lawn and garden use. Chlorpyrifos (Dursban) was involved in a negotiated phaseout in June 2000. These phaseouts resulted from recognition of the special risk that these substances posed for children. Four percent of patients presenting to poison control centers report pesticide exposure. Of those patients, 34% are children younger than 6 years.

Toxic nerve agents used by the military are often of the organophosphate group; an example is sarin, the nerve gas used in a terrorist action in Tokyo in 1995. In anticipation of military use of OP neurotoxins during the Gulf War, the US military was given prophylactic agents which some believe caused some of the symptoms of Gulf War syndrome.

With the emergence of the West Nile virus in the northeastern United States, programs of spraying have been implemented in large urban areas, in particular New York’s Central Park.

Controversy exists regarding the long-term effects of exposure to low levels of potentially neurotoxic substances.

Therapeutic uses of organophosphates

Several organophosphate agents are being tried therapeutically. Cholinesterase inhibition, which in large doses makes these agents effective pesticides, also may be useful in other doses for treating dementia. Metrifonate has been used to treat schistosomiasis and is undergoing trials for the treatment of primary degenerative dementia.

The organophosphates pyridostigmine and physostigmine are carbamate anticholinesterases that have been used for many years for the treatment of myasthenia gravis. Although the short-duration anticholinesterases are generally safe, reports of their abuse are associated with a picture similar to pesticide intoxication.

One of the author’s patients had been diagnosed erroneously as a myasthenic. Long-term “therapeutic” doses of physostigmine chemically altered her neuromuscular junctions to the point where she had to be slowly weaned from the drug.

Sung and others have reported on the ability of these substances to induce nicotinic receptor modulation. This explains the action of these drugs and may result in development of more effective agents.

Historic and new uses of organophosphates

The first organophosphate was synthesized in 1850. Physostigmine was used to treat glaucoma in the 1870s. By the 1930s, synthetic cholinesterase inhibitors were being used for skeletal muscle and autonomic disorders. Some organophosphates were tried in the treatment of parkinsonism.

In 1986, testing began for tacrine, the first cholinesterase inhibitor to be tried for Alzheimer disease; it was released for clinical use in 1993. It is no longer in use. The blood-brain barrier has been the limiting factor in developing a cholinesterase inhibitor for use in dementia. Drugs such as rivastigmine are now widely used. Reported adverse effects are nausea and vomiting, with resultant weight loss because of the increase in cholinergic activity. It has been shown to be useful in mild to moderately severe Alzheimer disease.

Pyridostigmine has been tried for the fatigue of postpolio syndrome but showed no benefit.

 

http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/1175139-overview

“How could intelligent beings seek to control a few unwanted species by a method that contaminated the entire environment and brought the threat of disease and death even to their own kind ” ~ A Silent Spring; Rachel Carson 1962

“Pesticides are substances or mixture of substances intended for preventing, destroying, repelling or mitigating any pest. According to the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants, 9 of the 12 most dangerous and persistent organic chemicals are pesticides. Pesticides are categorized into four main substituent chemicals: herbicides; fungicides; insecticides and bactericides.” – Wikipedia

On the left an organic farm whose main crop is citrus. This farm is shipping to other islands where the demand for organic produce is steadily growing. On the right a citrus farm using pesticides to kill everything at ground level. Considering that those who eat organic have much lower levels of chemical toxins in their body which do you want to eat?

From the first time I saw the results of gramaxone I was blown away that people were applying something that killed the foliage of plants almost immediately to the very soil they grew their food in. Even more shocking they were applying it around the food they were growing and soon eating.

I started researching this chemical – a chemical local people were told was “safe” – I talked to one farmer who remembered representatives of the agricultural companies coming out to the farmers fields in lab coats to tell them how “safe” it was.  A friend of mine remembers a UNESCO calendar advertising how easy life would be with gramoxone.

In Canada and around the world the same information was being disseminated about other pesticides and the results have been disastorous.

In the past only a few spoke out against this deluge of basically unproven chemicals being poured on our soil; those who did were soon silenced.

It was the 1990’s when I realized that a chemical pesticide known as agent orange caused a lot of sickness in Vietnam Vets – I began to feel it was my duty to inform. I realized that the chemicals in the lethal blend used in the Vietnam War were used on the food we eat too.

AFTER YEARS OF DENYING ANY RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN AGRICULTURAL CHEMICALS AND DISEASE IN HUMANS; unrefutable evidence is showing that there is undeniable proof that agricultural chemicals do cause disease. Study after study is showing the links. Class action suits are gathering all over the world. If you or I caused this many people to get sick or die we would be jailed for life!

Some of our agricultural chemicals are neuro toxins first used in the second world war.

Farmers here are still using these dangerous chemicals many of them as in the case of gramoxone are illegal in other parts of the world.

Where ever I travel I find that farmers often say “Oh I don’t use those chemicals for the food I eat; just the food I sell!”

One way to encourage local farmers to grow organic is to request it; pay a little more for quality organic food and the farmers will address the need.

Nobody can deny the connections to disease now:

Canada

Pesticide exposure linked to lower birth weights and earlier birth Lower birth weights and premature births are linked to respiratory problems and problems with learning and behaviour.

Canadian Hydro Sprayed Agent Orange to Clear Corridors “The Toronto Star interviewed former Hydro employees, including summer students and senior managers, who were assured the chemicals were harmless. The illnesses they’ve been dealing with the past few decades tell a different story.”

Agent Orange Soaked Ontario Teens – Forestry use of Agent Orange

The Agent Orange Association of Canada – this small group got an immediate compensation package of $20,000 CDN because agent orange (gramoxone) was sprayed in this army base.

UK

Inquiry into sheep dip ‘sickness’.  Hundreds of Scottish farmers allege that organophosphate dips have caused serious physical and psychological damage.

Denmark

Pesticides and Non Hodgkins Lymphoma

United States

Rotenone and Paraquat Linked to Parkinson’s Disease. Participants with Parkinsons Disease were 2.5 times more likely than controls to have reported  use of rotenone or paraquat (gramoxone).

Birth Defects from agricultural chemicals. The coalition testified pregnant women and developing fetuses are particularly vulnerable to the harmful effects of pesticides, which can cause spontaneous abortion, growth retardation, structural birth defects, or functional deficits.

The Veterans Association – Veterans exposed to Herbicides Vietnam Veterans who contract any of the diseases listed on this page are able to get financial assistance.

The national birth defects registry shows the effects of agent orange on the next generation!

Study Links Pesticides to Parkinson’s Studies all over the world link pesticides to Parkinson’s; I just heard of a person in their mid 20’s with the start of this disease.

Elevated serum levels of pesticides linked to Parkinson’s Disease

Atrazine in well waters in agricultural areas Concentrations as low as 0.1 ppb have been shown to alter the development of sex characteristics in male frogs.

France

France’s highest court has ruled that US agrochemical giant Monsanto had not told the truth about the safety of its best-selling weed-killer, Roundup.

Argentina

Monsanto is being brought to court by dozens of Argentinean tobacco farmers who say that the biotech giant knowingly poisoned them with herbicides and pesticides and subsequently caused ”devastating birth defects” in their children.

Nicaraugua

Amvac Chemical of Newport Beach will pay 13 Nicaraguan workers exposed to DBCP on banana plantations nearly 30 years ago.