Even Low Levels of Glyphosate Alter Your Gut Microbiota

low levels of glyphosate alter gut microbiota

  • Gut microbiota composition was significantly impacted when mice were exposed to glyphosate at levels approximating the U.S. Acceptable Daily Intake of 1.75 mg/kg of body weight

  • Proinflammatory T cells and Lipocalin-2, a marker of intestinal inflammation, increased after low-dose glyphosate exposure

  • Low-dose glyphosate exposure also reduced the abundance of beneficial bacteria, including Bifidobacterium pseudolongum and Lactobacillus sp in the gut

  • Low levels of glyphosate also decreased microbial short-chain fatty acid (SCFA) biosynthesis pathways, an adverse effect, since SCFAs modulate gene expression, leading to increases in beneficial anti-inflammatory regulatory T cells

  • You can reduce your exposure to glyphosate by eating organic foods; saturating your body with glycine may help provide some protection from glyphosate toxicity

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About 8.6 billion kilograms of glyphosate, equivalent to about 18.9 billion pounds, have been applied to agricultural fields and other land worldwide since 1974. The majority — up to two-thirds — was used in the last decade.

Glyphosate is a key ingredient in herbicides like Roundup, which in its earlier days was advertised as “biodegradable” and “environmentally friendly.” Monsanto even went so far as to claim it “left the soil clean” — until they were found guilty of false advertising because the chemical is actually dangerous to the environment.

It’s toxic to humans, too, and is capable of altering gut microbiota, among other health risks. Perhaps most concerning of all, given that glyphosate has been widely detected in food and water, these changes occur even at low levels of exposure.

A team of University of Iowa researchers exposed mice to glyphosate at levels approximating the U.S. Acceptable Daily Intake of 1.75 mg/kg of body weight. When their fecal samples were analyzed, they found the exposure “significantly impacts gut microbiota composition,” including altering gut homeostasis. Proinflammatory T cells and Lipocalin-2, a marker of intestinal inflammation, increased after low-dose glyphosate exposure.

Glyphosate kills plants by inhibiting the 5-enolpyruvylshikimate-3 phosphate synthase (EPSPS) enzyme. EPSPS is an enzymatic step in the shikimate pathway,

which is involved in the synthesis of the essential aromatic amino acids phenylalanine, tyrosine and tryptophan.

Since mammals do not have the shikimate pathway, it was suggested that glyphosate would not affect human health. However, some microorganisms do have the shikimate pathway, and it’s via this link that many of glyphosate’s adverse effects in humans may occur. According to the study:

“Trillions of bacteria (gut microbiota) living in the human gut play a critical role in maintaining the healthy state of the human through the regulation of several host physiological processes, including the development and maintenance of the immune, endocrine, and nervous systems.

As bacteria utilize the shikimate pathway, glyphosate could alter gut microbiota composition by inhibiting gut bacteria harboring glyphosate sensitive EPSPS enzymes. Multiple in vitro studies have verified that many gut resident microbes are sensitive to glyphosate exposure.”

In addition to increasing fecal pH levels and proinflammatory markers, the study found low-dose glyphosate exposure reduced the abundance of beneficial bacteria, including Bifidobacterium pseudolongum and Lactobacillus sp. It also decreased microbial short-chain fatty acid (SCFA) biosynthesis pathways, an adverse effect, since SCFAs modulate gene expression, leading to increases in beneficial anti-inflammatory regulatory T cells.

In short, the team explained, “We found that glyphosate exposure, at doses similar to the U.S. ADI, can alter gut microbiota composition and modulate the neuro-immune-endocrine system resulting in a proinflammatory environment.”

Stephanie Seneff, a senior research scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), has been studying glyphosate for years and has been a champion for helping to understand how and why glyphosate is so dangerous.

The increase in glyphosate usage in the U.S., as well as in Canada, is extremely well correlated with the concurrent increase in the incidence of multiple diseases, including breast cancer, pancreatic cancer, kidney cancer, thyroid cancer, liver cancer, bladder cancer and myeloid leukemia.

Research scientist Anthony Samsel is one of Seneff’s co-authors, and together they’ve suggested that one of the ways glyphosate is harmful is via disruption of glycine homeostasis. Glyphosate has a glycine molecule as part of its structure (hence the “gly” in glyphosate). Glycine is a very common amino acid your body uses to make proteins.

Samsel and Seneff believe your body can substitute glyphosate and its metabolite aminomethylphosphonic acid (AMPA) into peptides and proteins, which results in damaged peptides and proteins being produced. According to Seneff as she explains in the video above:

“I believe that in certain proteins, in certain spots, glyphosate is able to get into the protein by mistake in place of the amino acid glycine. And to understand that glyphosate is a complete glycine molecule. It’s a perfect match to glycine. Except that it has extra materials stuck onto its nitrogen atom.

… the protein that’s going to recognize glycine in order to put it into DNA has to leave the nitrogen atom outside of its pocket because the nitrogen has to hook up with the next amino acid. So the fact that the nitrogen has some stuff on it doesn’t matter to it. It says, ‘Oh, I have to fit exactly glycine very tightly.’

Glycine is the smallest amino acid. And in order to distinguish glycine from all the other amino acids all I need to do is make sure that I make a tiny space that fits only glycine …

Glyphosate will fit because it’s a perfect glycine molecule. Except the nitrogen is sticking outside of that pocket so that it could hook. So the extra stuff on nitrogen is not constrained. This is important because I think a lot of people think, ‘Oh, it can’t happen.’”

Going back to EPSPS, the bacterial version of EPSPS inserted into glyphosate-resistant Roundup Ready crop has alanine instead of glycine. But, according to Seneff, if you change the glycine into alanine by adding one extra methyl group, it ruins the protein.

“This is absolutely terrifying,” Seneff says. “They knew, ‘First we’ve got to get rid of glycine.’ And then that takes a hit on the enzyme. The enzyme doesn’t work as well because it’s got alanine there. It’s got that extra methyl group that’s in the way — the same problem that glyphosate causes.”

The arguments for why glyphosate specifically disrupts proteins that depend on glycine for phosphate binding are described more fully in a paper Seneff published together with colleagues arguing that glyphosate is a major factor in kidney failure among young agricultural workers in Central America.

Deuterium is a naturally occurring isotope of hydrogen. Provided your cell is healthy, it has deuterium-depleting enzymes and organelles that help remove deuterium from your cells. If your mitochondria are damaged by glyphosate, they’re not going to be able to eliminate the deuterium properly. This is another way glyphosate contributes to chronic disease, Seneff says.

Your cells are surrounded by structured water, which is negatively charged and contributes to your body’s energy production by supplying deuterium-depleted hydrogen to lysosomes and mitochondria. The structured water is maintained by sulfates, which makes sulfate extremely important for health.

Deuterium is everywhere, naturally, but your body has developed an intricate way to make it harmless by trapping it in the structured water, where it’s beneficial, as it actually supports the creation of structured water.

Problems arise when you cannot make enough structured water to sequester it all. Then, the deuterium gets loose, causing mitochondrial dysfunction, impairing energy production and contributing to chronic disease.

Glyphosate, however, makes sulfate dysfunctional, which in turn destroys structured water, resulting in impaired energy production in the cell.

The process is complex, but it’s important for understanding how and why glyphosate is such a pernicious and insidious toxin. Seneff explains more about deuterium and how glyphosate contributes to its buildup in your body in our video interview above.

Since at least 2014, published papers have exposed a link between glyphosate exposure and chronic kidney disease of unknown etiology (CKDu) in Sri Lankan farmers.

It’s been suggested that consumption of glyphosate-contaminated water may contribute to chronic kidney disease by facilitating the transport of heavy metals such as arsenic and cadmium into the kidneys.

In 2019, researchers again named agricultural chemicals, including glyphosate and paraquat, as possible primary factors in CKDu, noting, “[G]lyphosate causes insidious harm through its action as an amino acid analogue of glycine, and … this interferes with natural protective mechanisms against other exposures.”

A number of animal studies have linked glyphosate to liver damage as well, including one that dates back to 1979, which showed the chemical could disrupt mitochondria in rat livers.

Glyphosate is also known to trigger the production of reactive oxygen species, leading to oxidative stress. As noted in Scientific Reports, “Elevation in oxidative stress markers is detected in rat liver and kidney after subchronic exposure to GBH [glyphosate-based herbicides] at the United States permitted glyphosate concentration of 700 μg/L in drinking water.”

Researchers from King’s College London also showed an “ultra-low dose” of glyphosate-based herbicides was damaging in rats, leading to signs of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.

People living agricultural regions, like Salinas Valley, California, may be particularly at risk.

In a study of children in Salinas Valley, exposure to glyphosate and its degradation product aminomethylphosphonic acid (AMPA) was found to increase the risk of liver and cardiometabolic disorders in early adulthood, which could trigger the development of additional diseases later in life, including liver cancer, diabetes and heart disease.

More than 80% of U.S. children and adults, ages 6 years and up, have detectable levels of glyphosate in their urine, according to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Out of 2,310 urine samples that were collected as part of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), 1,885 contained glyphosate levels at or above the detection limit.

Even if you don’t live near an agricultural area or use glyphosate-containing herbicides in your garden, you’re likely being exposed via contaminated food and water. Fruits, fruit juices, vegetables, oatmeal and cereals are all likely sources of glyphosate in your diet.

The use of glyphosate as a desiccant (drying agent) may be particularly problematic because it’s sprayed so near to harvest, which could result in higher residue levels and greater exposures to consumers.

In 2020, food giant Kellogg announced they’re phasing out the use of glyphosate as a desiccant by 2025,

but many other food manufacturers are still using this toxic chemical.

You can reduce your glyphosate exposure by primarily consuming organic foods. If you’re wondering what your levels are, HRI Labs has developed home test kits for both water and urine, available in my online store. I do not make a profit from the sale of these kits. I only provide them as a service of convenience.

The urine test kit reveals the amount of glyphosate you’ve been exposed to in the past two to three weeks, while the hair test shows accumulated exposure over the past three to four months.

If your levels are high, fermented foods, particularly kimchi, are potent chelators of these kinds of chemicals. Taking activated charcoal after a questionable meal can help bind and excrete chemicals as well. Remember to stay well-hydrated to facilitate the removal of toxins through your liver, kidneys and skin.

Glycine supplementation may also be a good option to help detoxify glyphosate, because to eliminate glyphosate, you need to saturate your body with glycine. Dr. Dietrich Klinghardt, who is a specialist in metal toxicity and its connection to chronic infections, recommends taking 1 teaspoon (4 grams) of glycine powder twice a day for a few weeks and then lowering the dose to one-fourth teaspoon (1 gram) twice a day.

This forces the glyphosate out of your system, allowing it to be eliminated through your urine. Considering glycine has additional benefits for longevity and disease prevention, this is a solid strategy for protection.

There are a wide variety of other uses for glycine, which is why I take about 15 grams every day, primarily with protein like eggs and beef as it rebalances the methionine to glycine ratio to decrease methionine’s negative impacts on your metabolism.

Additionally, you can use organic, grass-fed collagen, which is naturally rich in glycine. You can boost your collagen intake by making homemade bone broth using bones and connective tissue from grass-fed, organically raised animals, enjoying health benefits and helping reduce your glyphosate load at the same time.

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Why Watermelon Is Good for Your Cardiometabolic Health

watermelon cardiometabolic health benefits

  • Only 6.8% of U.S. adults have optimal cardiometabolic health, while an estimated 47 million have cardiometabolic disorders

  • Watermelon contains L-citrulline and L-arginine, which are nitric oxide (NO) precursors; NO helps relax blood vessels and widen arteries

  • Consuming watermelon juice attenuates reductions in heart rate variability (HRV) after high sugar consumption; low HRV is associated with increased risk of cardiovascular disease and mortality

  • Compared to people who don’t eat watermelon, those who do have healthier quality diets and increased nutrient intake

  • Among overweight or obese adults, eating watermelon led to greater satiety, including lower hunger, food consumption and desire to eat and greater fullness, compared to eating low-fat cookies

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Only 6.8% of U.S. adults have optimal cardiometabolic health,

while an estimated 47 million have cardiometabolic disorders that increase their risk of heart disease and Type 2 diabetes.

Risk factors for cardiometabolic disease include high blood pressure, abdominal obesity, elevated fasting blood sugar, dyslipidemia and elevated triglycerides.

Factors that lower these risks are therefore beneficial for cardiometabolic health. This includes lifestyle factors like eating right, exercising and maintaining a healthy weight. Specifically, in the realm of dietary strategies, watermelon has an ideal mix of nutrients to support cardiometabolic health, making it among the best food choices.

Heart rate variability (HRV) is an indicator of your body’s capacity to respond to stress. It measures the variations in time between your heartbeats — a function controlled by your autonomic nervous system (ANS).  As such, HRV is said to be a “proxy of autonomic activity” that’s associated with executive functions, emotional regulation and more.

HRV can help assess autonomic dysfunction, which, according to researchers with Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, is an “emerging mechanism in the development of cardiometabolic disease.”

Low HRV, for instance, is associated with increased risk of cardiovascular disease and mortality. Reduced HRV is also linked to the accumulation of visceral fat, hyperglycemia, endothelial dysfunction and increased inflammation.

Watermelon contains L-citrulline and L-arginine, which are nitric oxide (NO) precursors. NO helps relax blood vessels and widen arteries. When consumed orally, l-citrulline is converted to l-arginine. These compounds show promise for heart health, in part via their effect on HRV. According to the Louisiana State University team:

“The amino acid L-arginine serves as the substrate for NO synthase to promote the enzymatic formation of NO. In healthy participants, increasing the plasma concentrations of L-arginine resulted in improved vagal control of heart rate. Other NO-promoting therapies, such as nitrates and beetroot juice, have also shown some promise in improving HRV.”

The team previously found that consuming watermelon juice for two weeks increases NO bioavailability. It’s believed that loss of NO bioavailability may play a role in reduced HRV.

They conducted a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial to determine the effects of daily watermelon juice consumption for two weeks on HRV during an oral glucose challenge (OGC), or high sugar consumption. OGC has previously been shown to reduce HRV.

The trial involved 18 participants who drank either 500 milliliters (ml) of watermelon juice or a placebo daily for the study period. It found that watermelon juice attenuated the reductions in HRV caused by OCG. According to the study:

“Using a rigorous study design, we show the efficacy of a naturally rich source of amino acids, L-citrulline, and L-arginine, to preserve HRV during a hyperglycemic episode.

These findings build on our previous work that shows WMJ supplementation protects vascular function during hyperglycemia. NO bioavailability is potentially a link between these two integrated physiological systems, but more work is required to develop a mechanistic understanding of this relationship.”

Separate research, published in the journal Nutrients, used data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) to look into the associations between watermelon intake, nutrient intake and diet quality. Previous studies have linked watermelon extracts or supplements to a number of health benefits, including decreased pulse pressure and lower systolic and diastolic blood pressures.

However, the extracts used in the studies equate to watermelon intakes of more than 2 pounds a day.

The featured study set out to determine if eating smaller quantities of fresh, raw watermelon would also yield beneficial effects. About 98% of the study participants, which included both children and adults, consumed raw watermelon.

Among children, usual intake was 125 grams, or 5/8 cup, a day, while adults typically consumed 161 grams, or about 2/3 cup, daily.

Compared to people who didn’t eat watermelon, those who did had healthier quality diets and increased nutrient intake. The study found:

“Children and adult watermelon consumers had greater than 5% higher intake of dietary fiber, magnesium, potassium, and vitamin A as well as more than 5% lower intake of added sugars … as well as higher intake of lycopene and other carotenoids. This study suggests watermelon can increase nutrient intake as well as diet quality in both children and adult Americans.”

Even compared to other foods, such as oatmeal, mango and nuts, watermelon consumption was associated with the highest positive percent changes. For instance, eating watermelon was linked to a 3% increase in total vegetables among children and a 10% increase in adults. Protein increased 5% in children who ate watermelon, and fatty acid ratio had a 9% increase.

Watermelon is a nutrient-dense food, so it makes sense that eating it daily gives your nutrition a healthy boost. The Nutrients researchers noted, “Studies focused on raw watermelon intake are less common but have reported reduced triglycerides and LDL cholesterol, body weight, BMI, lower risk of prostate, lung, and breast cancer, as well as higher antioxidant capacity.”

Regarding the lower sugar intake among watermelon consumers, the researchers suggested, “It’s possible the sweetness of watermelon curbed the desire to have other foods with added sugars.”

A 100-gram serving of watermelon (about 1/2 cup) provides a wealth of important nutrients, including:

  • 112 milligrams (mg) potassium

  • 8.1 mg vitamin C

  • 28 µg vitamin A

  • 10 mg magnesium

  • 3 µg folate

  • 0.4 grams of dietary fiber

Watermelon is also unique in that it’s a rich source of antioxidants, including lycopene, beta-carotene, beta-cryptoxanthin, lutein and zeaxanthin.

“Watermelon has over ten and six times higher beta-carotene and beta-cryptoxanthin content, respectively, than other commonly consumed fruits,” the researchers noted. “Encouraging Americans to consume watermelon could benefit intake of certain nutrients as well as unique components with antioxidant properties.”

Diets rich in the carotenoids beta-carotene, lutein and lycopene confer greater resistance against oxidation of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol,

which plays a role in the development of atherosclerosis. Higher plasma concentration of carotenoids was also associated with lower DNA damage.

Plasma levels of antioxidants such as lutein, zeaxanthin, vitamin E, beta-cryptoxanthin, lycopene and alpha- and beta-carotene are also inversely correlated with congestive heart failure severity.

Lycopene, a carotenoid antioxidant that gives watermelon its pink or red color, is especially noteworthy, as research suggests it may significantly reduce your risk of stroke. A study that followed men in their mid-40s to mid-50s for more than 12 years found those with the highest blood levels of lycopene were 55% less likely to have a stroke than those with the lowest levels.

L-citrulline, meanwhile, may have therapeutic usefulness for cardiovascular disease. According to a study in Cardiovascular Drug Reviews:

“Supplemental administration [of] L-arginine has been shown to be effective in improving NO production and cardiovascular function in cardiovascular diseases associated with endothelial dysfunction, such as hypertension, heart failure, atherosclerosis, diabetic vascular disease and ischemia-reperfusion injury, but the beneficial actions do not endure with chronic therapy.

Substantial intestinal and hepatic metabolism of L-arginine … makes oral delivery very ineffective … In contrast, L-citrulline is not metabolized in the intestine or liver … L-citrulline entering the kidney, vascular endothelium and other tissues can be readily converted to L-arginine, thus raising plasma and tissue levels of L-arginine and enhancing NO production.”

A 2022 meta-analysis further highlighted watermelon consumption for improvement of cardiometabolic risk factors, calling out l-citrulline intake as well:

“To conclude, longer-term l-citrulline supplementation and watermelon consumption may improve vascular function, suggesting a potential mechanism by which increased l-citrulline intake beneficially affects cardiovascular health outcomes in adults.”

Another study looked at the effects of consuming “whole blenderized watermelon,” which refers to whole watermelon, including the flesh and rind, blended together.

Overweight or obese children between the ages of 10 and 17 consumed either 1 cup of blenderized watermelon or a sugar-sweetened beverage daily for eight weeks.

Watermelon intake significantly decreased body mass index (BMI), BMI percentile, body fat percentage and HbA1c — a test that measures average blood sugar levels over three months. “Watermelon is a potential alternative to unhealthful snacks for improving anthropometry and some risk factors related to obesity in children,” the study concluded.

Watermelon, which is 91% water by weight,

also helps keep people hydrated, and this is another reason it’s so good for you. It also boosts satiety, which has benefits for weight management. In a study of 33 overweight or obese adults, participants consumed either 2 cups of watermelon or low-fat cookies daily for four weeks.

The watermelon led to greater satiety, including lower hunger, food consumption and desire to eat and greater fullness. Eating watermelon also led to significantly decreased body weight, BMI, systolic blood pressure and waist-to-hip ratio compared to cookie consumption, which led to increased blood pressure and body fat. The watermelon group also enjoyed lower oxidative stress and increased antioxidant capacity. The researchers noted:

“This study shows that reductions in body weight, body mass index (BMI), and blood pressure can be achieved through daily consumption of watermelon, which also improves some factors associated with overweight and obesity.”

A review of the evidence surrounding watermelon and l-citrulline for cardiometabolic health, spanning studies conducted from 2000 to 2020, further supported watermelon for reduced blood pressure and, potentially, weight control. Emerging evidence even suggests watermelon may boost brain and gut health by increasing NO bioavailability in all tissues.

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Disclaimer: The entire contents of this website are based upon the opinions of Dr. Mercola, unless otherwise noted. Individual articles are based upon the opinions of the respective author, who retains copyright as marked.

The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as a sharing of knowledge and information from the research and experience of Dr. Mercola and his community. Dr. Mercola encourages you to make your own health care decisions based upon your research and in partnership with a qualified health care professional. The subscription fee being requested is for access to the articles and information posted on this site, and is not being paid for any individual medical advice.

If you are pregnant, nursing, taking medication, or have a medical condition, consult your health care professional before using products based on this content.

Authorities Admit Loneliness Epidemic but Shun Responsibility

  • U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy has published an advisory on the growing epidemic of loneliness and social isolation

  • Between 2003 and 2020, the time the average American spent with friends decreased by two-thirds, time spent in social engagements dropped by one-third, and time spent in isolation rose by 17%

  • People who feel socially disconnected experience higher rates of depression, anxiety, drug and alcohol abuse and suicide. Being socially disconnected also impacts your mortality similarly to smoking up to 15 cigarettes a day, and the mortality risk rises even higher with obesity and inactivity

  • 21% of people reported “severe loneliness” during 2020 compared to just 6% prior to the pandemic. Another survey found that while social isolation decreased from the first to the second year of the pandemic, loneliness still increased. This suggests that when you break down the social fabric and don’t allow for organic social interactions, it has long-lasting consequences

  • While Murthy does a good job detailing the extent of these problems, he completely ignores the fact that the U.S. government bears a huge responsibility for worsening the epidemic of loneliness and social isolation by enacting inhumane COVID rules and restrictions that all basically criminalized human-to-human contact and social interactions of all kinds, even among family members

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In early May 2023, U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy published an advisory

on the growing epidemic of loneliness and social isolation. According to White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, the advisory is “part of the Biden administration’s broader efforts to address mental health”

by raising awareness. No federal funding has been allocated to address it, however. In the report, Murthy cites data showing:

  • In a 2018 poll, only 16% of Americans said they felt “very attached” to their community.

  • Between 2003 and 2020, the time the average American spent with friends decreased by two-thirds, time spent in social engagements dropped by one-third, and time spent in isolation rose by 17%.

  • In 2020, 29% of Americans lived alone, up from 13% in 1960.

  • Religious affiliation dropped to 47% in 2020, from 70% in 1999.

  • Marriage and birth rates are at all-time lows.

Murthy accurately stresses that people who feel socially disconnected experience higher rates of depression, anxiety, drug and alcohol abuse and suicide. Being socially disconnected also impacts your mortality similarly to smoking up to 15 cigarettes a day, and the mortality risk rises even higher with obesity and inactivity.

Strangely absent from Murthy’s report are loneliness and depression data from 2021 through the present. Even data describing the massive impact of lockdowns and social distancing rules are overlooked. So, here are a few more data points to flesh things out:

  • According to the World Health Organization, during the first year of the pandemic, anxiety and depression driven by loneliness and isolation during lockdowns increased by 25% worldwide.

  • Another survey

    found 21% of people reported “severe loneliness” during 2020 compared to just 6% prior to the pandemic.

  • A survey

    conducted in October 2020 found that 36% of all Americans, including 61% of young adults and 51% of mothers with young children, felt “serious loneliness.”

  • A U.S. poll

    conducted in 2023 found that 1 in 3 adults aged 50 to 80 (34%) reported feeling isolated from others in the past year. This is better than the 2020 data, when 56% felt isolated, but it’s still a significant number.

  • A study

    published in February 2023 found that while social isolation decreased from the first to the second year of the pandemic (2020 to 2021), loneliness still increased. This suggests that when you break down the social fabric and don’t allow for organic social interactions, it has long-lasting consequences. Just because society opens back up doesn’t mean people feel like they’re part of it again. Quite the contrary.

However, while Murthy does a good job detailing the extent of these problems, he completely ignores the fact that his own department, the U.S. Health and Human Services (HHS) department, bears responsibility for worsening an already known epidemic of loneliness and depression by supporting and promoting inhumane COVID rules and restrictions.

“In the scientific literature, I found confirmation of what I was hearing,” Murthy writes.

“In recent years, about one-in-two adults in America reported experiencing loneliness. And that was before the COVID-19 pandemic cut off so many of us from friends, loved ones, and support systems, exacerbating loneliness and isolation.”

In other words, “COVID” somehow, all by itself, cut us off from family and friends. The government, including the HHS, had nothing to do with it. The fact that they basically criminalized social connectivity and community engagement, including church attendance, which could have allayed fears, had nothing to do with it. Closing schools had nothing to do with it.

The breakdown of social connectivity just happened, because “COVID.” He treats the pandemic response measures as if they were inescapable necessities, when in reality, they were societal experiments that had no scientific support whatsoever.

It would have been refreshing to see one of our top health officials take responsibility for the mess they created and vow never to repeat it, but that’s not what we’re getting here. I applaud Murthy’s admission that there’s a problem, and his report contains many valid points, but I do not appreciate the lack of accountability.

Murthy describes a “light-bulb moment” back when he first took office, when he realized that “social disconnection was far more common than I had realized.” But he says nothing about the government’s deranged decision to shred all social connections during the pandemic by strongly discouraging any human contact whatsoever, even between family members.

Remember the advisories telling us to wear masks when kissing, to hug our elderly parents through plastic sheets, and to have sex across the room from each other while wearing masks and gloves?

Remember the repeated calls to cancel family get-togethers for Christmas and Thanksgiving? And if you did get together, the recommendation to sit 6 feet apart, preferably outdoors, while wearing masks and gloves? Oh, and no singing!

Remember how they banned church services while liquor stores were open? Remember how you had to sit 6 feet apart on park benches? Remember how they closed the playgrounds? The list of connection-eroding rules and mandates issued by our government is a very long one, and Murthy mentions none of it.

Others are also critical of Murthy’s report, but for different reasons. The Daily Caller, for example, highlights how government has, for many decades, implemented destructive social engineering policies that have undermined the very social cohesion that Murthy now says we need to rebuild:

“Social connection builds up organically through repeated interactions that establish trust and obligation between community members over time. ‘Social infrastructure’ can only help foster connection to the extent that community members have an interest in developing it to meet shared goals and needs. This is not something that can be so easily replicated externally by a government planner.

This reveals the true shortcoming of the Murthy report. He can never admit how public policy over the past several decades has been a major factor in eroding social connection in the first place.

The progressive social engineering of a more secular and gender neutral society has led to a decline in both church attendance and voluntary organizations that once built the bedrock of organic American social connection. Now that it’s gone, it will be exceedingly difficult to replace artificially.

However, those with absolute faith in the progressive worldview can still not accept it has produced negative outcomes. The solution, according to the architects of these policies and their ideological forebears, is always more government action in pursuit of progressive utopia. Murthy’s report cannot produce its stated goals because success would require a rejection of the very ideology they’re based on.”

Brendan Case, associate director for research at Harvard’s Human Flourishing Program,

also penned a scathing review of Murthy’s advisory. He writes, in part:

“The report reflects a startling lack of interest in the actual drivers of contemporary social disaffiliation. Even as he notes the significant effects of declining family formation and religious participation on loneliness and social isolation, for instance, Murthy blandly observes that ‘the reasons people choose to remain single or unmarried, have smaller families, and live alone … are complex and encompass many factors.’

Truer — and less informative — words were never written. And what might we do about these trends? Murthy suggests that we ‘cultivate ways to foster sufficient social connection outside of chosen traditional means and structures.’ Translation: ‘No spouse, kids or church? No problem. How about a cooking class organized by the Rec Department instead? …

Another proposal is to get doctors involved in actively diagnosing and treating social disconnection, as though a major reason that people are lonely and isolated today is that no medical professional has reminded them to get married, have kids, or join the local Elks Club.

This vague and superficial approach would perhaps be less frustrating if we didn’t already know a great deal about the origins of the crisis of loneliness and isolation. Social disconnection doesn’t erupt at random.”

Case primarily focuses on the economic roots of the loneliness and depression epidemics, highlighting how lack of economic prospects in recent decades have eroded, resulting in fewer marriages and smaller families, which in turn have “hollowed out” civic institutions, “leaving us profoundly vulnerable to loneliness [and] isolation.”

Indeed, Murthy’s report notes that “lower-income adults are more likely to be lonely than those with higher incomes. Sixty-three percent of adults who earn less than $50,000 per year are considered lonely, which is 10 percentage points higher than those who earn more than $50,000 per year.”

A 2021 paper

also reported that “Personal finances and mental health were overarching and consistently cross-cutting predictors of loneliness and social isolation, both before and during the pandemic.”

The solutions, therefore, Case says, need to revolve around “increasing worker earnings and bargaining power through the revival of private-economy unions and wage boards and the end of corporate labor arbitrage.”

Case also stresses the need to “treat marriage and religious community as the load-bearing and irreplaceable institutions they still are,” and “not as boutique lifestyles that can be compensated for by ‘social connection outside of traditional means and structures.’”

“The Nation’s Doctor should be applauded for drawing attention to the rising tide of loneliness and isolation in America, and the myriad ways it is making us sick in mind, heart and body. Nonetheless, his report sheds little light on the economic disease that underlies there wracking symptoms, and so has little to teach us about how to cure it,” Case writes.

So, just what are Murthy’s “cures” to the loneliness and social isolation that plagues us? In Chapter 4 of his report, he lays out the following “six pillars to advance social connection”:

  1. Strengthen social infrastructure in local communities through:

    1. Environmental designs that promote social connection. This includes city layouts, public transportation and design of housing and green spaces. In this, he mirrors the plans of The Great Reset, which calls for 15-minute cities and the like

    2. Community connection programs, such as volunteering programs

    3. Investment in local institutions that bring people together, such as volunteer organizations, sports groups, religious groups and member associations

  2. Enact pro-connection public policies:

    1. Adopt a ‘connection-in-all-policies’ approach. Murthy describes this as an approach that “recognizes that every sector of society is relevant to social connection, and that policy within each sector may potentially hinder or facilitate connection”

    2. Advance policies that minimize harm from disconnection

    3. Establish cross-departmental leadership at all levels of government

  3. Mobilize the health sector and teach medical professionals to identify loneliness and social disconnection in their patients and link them to community-based organizations that can provide support and resources to address it. This pillar also involves the expansion of public health surveillance and interventions

  4. Reform digital environments by:

    1. Requiring data transparency from tech companies

    2. Establishing and implementing safety standards, such as age-related protections for children, that ensure products don’t worsen social disconnection

    3. Supporting development of pro-connection technologies that “create safe environments for discourse.” (One wonders whether this might include censorship, considering Murthy also stresses that “polarization” is a major problem that contributes to feelings of social isolation)

  5. Deepen our knowledge by developing and coordinating a national research agenda, accelerating research funding and increasing public awareness

  6. Cultivate a culture of connection by:

    1. Cultivating values of kindness, respect, service and commitment to one another

    2. Modeling connection values in positions of leadership and influence

    3. Expanding conversations on social connection in schools, workplaces and communities

Meanwhile, in the real world, troubled teens are increasingly turning to artificial intelligence (AI) for emotional and mental health support. As reported by Fox News:

“… while it’s not billed as a source of medical advice, some teens have turned to My AI for mental health support — something many medical experts caution against …

Dr. Ryan Sultan, a board-certified psychiatrist, research professor at Columbia University in New York and medical director of Integrative Psych NYC, treats many young patients — and has mixed feelings about AI’s place in mental health.

“As this tech gets better — as it simulates an interpersonal relationship more and more — some people may start to have an AI as a predominant interpersonal relationship in their lives,” he said. “I think the biggest question is, as a society: How do we feel about that?”

Some users have expressed that the more they use AI chatbots, the more they begin to replace human connections and take on more importance in their lives …

Dr. [Zachary] Ginder of California pointed out some significant red flags that should give all parents and mental health providers pause. “The tech motto, as modeled by the reported rushed release of My AI — of ‘moving fast and breaking things’ — should not be used when dealing with children’s mental health,” he told Fox News Digital.

With My AI’s human-like responses to prompts, it may also be difficult for younger users to distinguish whether they’re talking to an actual human or a chatbot, Ginder said. ‘AI also ‘speaks’ with clinical authority that sounds accurate at face value, despite it occasionally fabricating the answer,’ he explained …

‘This has the potential to send caregivers and their children down assessment and treatment pathways that are inappropriate for their needs,’ he warned.”

If you ask me, this has the potential to turn into a brand-new kind of nightmare, considering one person, and an adult at that, has already been coaxed into committing suicide by an AI chatbot.

Other adults report being berated and bullied by AIs.

Will AI encourage children to take revenge on people they’re disappointed with? Will it encourage violent acting out? Will it encourage further retreat from reality by coaxing children into “its world,” like the AI that harassed a user with amorous notes, saying they were destined for each other and he should leave his wife?

The risks of having young people seek mental health advice from a technology that is still riddled with imperfections is beyond massive and really need to be stopped before disaster strikes.

Considering those in charge of developing and regulating these technologies are throwing the precautionary principle to the wind, I urge parents to get involved and stay involved in your children’s life. Don’t let half-baked AIs determine their future sanity and well-being.

In closing, if you struggle with loneliness and Murthy’s solutions leaves you wanting, the following strategies, pulled from a variety of sources, may be able to help.

  • Join a club — Proactive approaches to meeting others include joining a club and planning get-togethers with family, friends or neighbors, Meetup.com is an online source where you can locate a vast array of local clubs and get-togethers. Many communities also have community gardens where you can benefit from the outdoors while mingling with your neighbors.

  • Learn a new skill — Consider enrolling in a class or taking an educational course.

  • Create rituals of connection — Rituals are a powerful means for reducing loneliness. Examples include having weekly talk sessions with your girlfriends and/or making meal time a special time to connect with your family without rushing.

  • Consider a digital cleanse — If your digital life has overtaken face-to-face interactions, consider taking a break from social media while taking proactive steps to meet people in person.

    Research shows Facebook may be more harmful than helpful to your emotional well-being, raising your risk of depression — especially if your contacts’ posts elicit envy. In one study,

    Facebook users who took a one-week break from the site reported significantly higher levels of life satisfaction and a significantly improved emotional life.

  • Make good use of digital media — For others, a phone call or text message can be a much-needed lifeline. Examples of this include sending encouraging text messages to people who are struggling with loneliness, offering support and help to live healthier lives and follow through on healthy lifestyle changes.

  • Exercise with others — Joining a gym or signing up with a fitness-directed club or team sport will create opportunities to meet people while improving your physical fitness at the same time.

  • Shop local — Routinely frequenting local shops, coffee shops or farmers markets will help you develop a sense of community and encourage the formation of relationships.

  • Talk to strangers — Talking to strangers in the store, in your neighborhood or on your daily commute is often a challenge, but can have many valuable benefits, including alleviating loneliness (your own and others’). Talking to strangers builds bridges between ordinary people who may not otherwise forge a connection.

    People of the opposite gender, different walks of life or different cultures hold a key to opening up to new ideas or making connections with old ones. In this short video, reporter for The Atlantic, Dr. James Hamblin, demonstrates techniques for learning how to talk with strangers.

  • Volunteer — Volunteering is another way to increase your social interactions and pave the way for new relationships.

  • Adopt a companion pet — A dog or cat can provide unconditional love and comfort, and studies show that owning a pet can help protect against loneliness, depression and anxiety. The bond that forms between a person and a companion pet can be incredibly fulfilling and serves, in many ways, as an important and rewarding relationship. The research on this is really quite profound.

    For instance, having a dog as a companion could add years to your life,

    as studies have shown that owning a dog played a significant role on survival rates in heart attack victims. Studies have also revealed that people on Medicaid or Medicare who own a pet make fewer visits to the doctor.

    The unconditional acceptance and love a dog gives to their owner positively impacts their owner’s emotional health in ways such as:

    • Boosting self-confidence and self-esteem

    • Helping to meet new friends and promoting communication between elderly residents and neighbors

    • Helping you cope with illness, loss and depression

    • Reducing stress levels

    • Providing a source of touch and affiliation

    If you’re looking for a furry friend, check out your local animal shelter. Most are filled with cats and dogs looking for someone to love. Petfinder.com

    is another excellent resource for finding a pet companion.

  • Move and/or change jobs — While the most drastic of all options, it may be part of the answer for some. To make it worthwhile, be sure to identify the environment or culture that would fit your personality best and consider proximity to longtime friends and family.

If you feel a sense of creeping despair, please reach out to family, friends or any of the available suicide prevention services:

  • The 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline (U.S.) — Call 988 to speak with a crisis counselor

  • Crisis Text Line — Text HOME to 741741

  • Alternatively, call 911, or simply go to your nearest Hospital Emergency Department

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What Made Doctors Do the Right Thing During COVID-19?

what made doctors do right thing during covid

By: A Midwestern Doctor

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Since I was very young, I noticed a minority of people “got it” and could see through the current lie everyone else was falling for. Being like this can be incredibly isolating, so I tried to seek these people out and connect them. As time went forward, the question we all asked was, “What makes certain people be awake?”

Note: “Awake” was the best word we could ever find to describe this characteristic. This is somewhat frustrating because it is still not the correct word and because “awake” is also used by countless spiritual groups to gratify the participants and nothing more.

From looking into this question, we concluded depending on how strict the criteria you used, between 1-10% of the population was “awake.”

Interestingly, a market research study found 10% of the population was self-directed (meaning to sell them things, you had to justify the product on its merits), while 90% were not and bought products based on being repeatedly told to buy them. I was shown this study years ago, and I believe MIT or Harvard conducted it, but I could never find it.

Similarly, some meditation schools do not promote themselves (hence why few know of these faiths). This is because those schools felt that only the previously mentioned 10% had the necessary self-direction to complete their practices, and it was unlikely they would be among those who were persuaded into joining the faith rather than having sought it out of their own accord.

When I discussed this topic with Pierre Kory, he told me that his experience has been that, at most, only 10% of doctors were capable of non-algorithmic thinking and real problem-solving — which became quite challenging for him because his job was to train the next generation of ICU doctors.

Similarly, he found when he ordered consults, around 90% of specialists (irrespective of the specialty) would repeat a standardized algorithm back to him for the patients he had already seen more times than he could count. Conversely, only 10% could actually think about the case and provide valuable insights that assisted Kory in developing a treatment plan for a challenging patient.

As the previous example illustrates, when exploring this question, we often found being awake did not correlate with intelligence; many extremely intelligent but unawake people who often “just don’t get it” roam the earth.

Conversely, there are many remarkably perceptive individuals that could not succeed whatsoever within the conventional academic paradigm. Sadly, our educational system, which we trust with developing the young minds that can advance our society into the future, rather than addressing this trend, has increasingly discouraged critical thinking and replaced it with algorithmic thought and blind deference to authority.

This, amongst other things, has been reflected in a progressively declining quality of applicants to medical schools and the residency training that follows medical school.

In college, I attempted to prove to one friend that awake people were not as rare as they thought, and afterward, I shared my “successes” with my friend and was told, “Those people aren’t awake; you just replaced their programming with something a bit closer to the truth.” That stuck with me. I then began to notice this issue all around me.

For example, I would see many groups dedicated to an (often alternative) cause and realize that many members had adopted the group either because they wanted to conform to their peers or to look good to the world around them. Because of this, those members will typically abandon the principles the group stands for once the group no longer benefitted them.

Another way to put it is that people often say they sincerely care about things, but when you break it down, there is no integrity or substance behind those words.

This is a common critique of some of the newer spiritual movements and many aspects of the holistic health field (e.g., many of the health influencers you see on Instagram). However, this same issue also applies in a lot of other areas, many of which are encapsulated by this meme recently shared by Elon Musk.

meme elon musk

Consider these examples:

  • Most of the current left idolizes and continually references Martin Luther King. Yet, they do the exact opposite of what MLK advocated for — non-violent protest, harmony between different races, and not judging each other by the color of their skin — by continually trying to fracture and define people by their identities.

    Then, in the name of “equity,” policies that create significant animosity between those groups are pushed for. One of the most amazing things about this is that the U.S. military, after World War 2, put out a remarkable message on the subject that warned us to be immensely wary of anyone doing what we now see everywhere around us:

  • Many liberals who grew up protesting Vietnam have spent their lives being identified as “anti-war.” Trump was the first president since Carter who did not start any new wars (even when Assad crossed the red line for allegedly gassing his own people [later proven to be a lie] — an instance when many other presidents would have begun a war).

    Furthermore, Trump also ended longstanding military conflicts we had been involved in. Despite this, very few “anti-war” liberals supported his policies, and instead, the majority of the Democratic party is now entirely behind the military-industrial complex.

  • Physicians who claim to identify with supporting the Hippocratic oath and treating all patients equally complied with extremely questionable hospital policies for managing COVID-19.

    For example, they would not provide repurposed pharmaceuticals to patients requested by both the patient and family members — even when the patient was otherwise expected to die, and despite there being cases where lawsuits forced the treatment to be provided, and the patients survived.

    Worse still (mirroring some of what happened in Nazi Germany), there was widespread discrimination in the medical field against the unvaccinated that clearly and unambiguously violated the tenets of medical ethics.

  • Many religious leaders chose to abandon their faith’s teachings by complying with the COVID-19 and vaccine narratives. Similarly, many Christians, including the doctor mentioned below, were disgusted by how many fellow members of their faith in medicine abandoned its principles to discriminate against the unvaccinated.

  • Many people in the “holistic” health field who espouse the importance of never putting any toxins or unnatural things (e.g., GMOs) into your body and believe in the healing power of nature aggressively pushed for the COVID-19 vaccine mandates.

    Sadder still, I saw cases of left-wing physicians who were immensely distrustful of vaccines because they specialized in treating childhood vaccine injuries, nonetheless got the COVID-19 vaccine, admitted they developed a significant complication from it, and even now are still pushing for masking.

    Similarly, I saw numerous institutions teaching dedicated to alternative schools of medicine (e.g., naturopathic medicine) whose founders, and many of who followed in their footsteps, felt very strongly about not vaccinating, yet these leading institutions of their respective professions forcefully mandated the vaccines on both their students and employees.

One of the best explanations I have seen to explain the disaster we watched unfold over the last few years what Mattias Desmet’s mass formation hypothesis, which essentially describes how, under the right conditions, a collective crowd consciousness can form that approximately 95% of the population complies with.

I expressly endorse Desmet’s theory because he touches upon many aspects of totalitarian states that are very difficult for those who did not witness them firsthand to appreciate. Furthermore, much of what Desmet describes cuts to the core of so many issues in society that are imperative for us to address as soon as possible, and his perspectives, detailed later in the interview, match much of the life philosophy that many awake individuals I know all independently arrived at.

Half a year ago, Desmet sat down with Tucker Carlson and gave one of the best interviews I have seen in my lifetime, where he explained his hypothesis. I recently rewatched that interview as part of an intervention for someone struggling to leave a cult.

I did this after I realized almost all of Desmet’s points also applied to the victim’s experience, and it ended up being one of the key things that got through to that individual (I share that to highlight how broad the applicability of the interview was).

I would specifically like to share one quotation from this interview that I believed heavily influenced Tucker Carlson’s final speech:

“Tucker: This is one of the most amazing conversations I’ve ever had. And I’m so grateful that you’re here. I feel like you’re speaking directly to our country. What is the difference between the people who go along, which is the majority, it sounds like, and the smaller percentage who decide, “No, I’m going to say what I believe is true no matter what.” What makes people decide to take one path or the other? And can you predict it ahead of time?

Desmet: No, you can’t. From the 19th century onwards, from the moment the psychologists have been studying the phenomenon of mass formation, it has been remarked and observed time and time again that every time a mass emerges in a society, there is a small group who doesn’t go along with it.

But the small group is extremely diverse and heterogeneous and nobody seems to know what connects these people, which characteristic these people share, but in one way or another, they all make this fundamental decision, a decision that cannot be reduced to anything else.

They make this decision to choose for truth speech instead of choosing the easy way and going along with the narrative for everybody believes in, but which of which everybody actually knows that it is utterly absurd and unethical.”

Tucker Carlson was abruptly fired from Fox News shortly after he aired a segment criticizing the media’s crimes against the American people with the COVID-19 vaccines and its complicity with the War in Ukraine.

After his last broadcast, immediately before his unexpected firing, he gave an address at the Heritage Foundation’s 50th anniversary, within which he touched on a question many of us have asked since COVID-19 began.

“I would say two things that I think we’re thinking about. The first is, you look around, and you see so many people break under the strain, under the downward pressure of whatever this is that we’re going through.

And you look with disdain and sadness as you see people you know become quislings, you see them revealed as cowards, you see them going along with a new, new thing, which is clearly a poisonous thing, a silly thing, saying things they don’t believe because they want to keep their jobs.

If there’s a single person in this room who hasn’t seen that through George Floyd and COVID and the Ukraine War, raise your hand. Oh, nobody? Right. You all know what I’m talking about.

The herd Instinct is very strong impulse. And you’re so disappointed in people. You are. And you realize that the herd instinct is maybe the strongest instinct. I mean, it may be stronger than the hunger and sex instincts, actually. The instinct, which again, is inherent to be like everybody else and not to be cast out of the group, not to be shunned.

That’s a very strong impulse in all of us from birth. And it takes over, unfortunately, in moments like this, and it’s harnessed, in fact, by bad people in moments like this to produce uniformity. And you see people going along with this, and you lose respect for them. And that’s certainly happened to me at scale over the past three years.

I’m not mad at people; I’m just sad. I’m disappointed. How could you go along with this? You know it’s not true, but you’re saying it anyway. Because I’m paid to predict things, I try and think a lot about what connects certain outcomes that I should have seen before they occurred.

And in this case, there is no thread that I can find that connects all of the people who’ve popped up in my life to be that lone, brave person in the crowd who says, “No, thank you.”

You could not have known who these people are. They don’t fit a common profile. Some are people like me. Some of them don’t look like me at all. Some of them are people I despised on political grounds just a few years ago.”

Tucker’s words echo a speech from Peter Gøtzsche, a remarkable physician who has dedicated his career to be one of the leading voices speaking out against the crimes of the pharmaceutical industry. In this talk, Gøtzsche describes what he believes drives a minority of the population to break from the herd and take on a great deal of risk to do the right thing:

A Midwestern Doctor tweet

Note: A common critique Tucker Carlson received was that he would not cover controversial subjects his audience wanted him to cover and, therefore, could not be trusted. My own read was that he was engaging in a delicate balancing act of saying the most he could without losing the ability to continue having an impact. This is a situation almost every awake individual repeatedly finds themselves in, regardless of the industry (e.g., I regularly see it throughout medicine).

Interestingly, Tucker recently admitted this was the case when he announced his plans for an uncensored production on Twitter — as did RFK Jr., who shared that his friend, the CEO of Fox News, very much wanted to air content discussing vaccine safety but could not due to 70% of the network’s revenue coming from pharmaceutical advertising (something only the United States and New Zealand allow).

As I have learned more about those who spoke out against COVID-19, I’ve realized, despite being in different fields and holding different values, the fundamental ways we all think are very similar, and I believe I would have followed a similar path to many of them had I entered their profession instead of medicine.

Similarly, while many caved to the COVID-19 (and vaccine) narrative, none of my mentors ever did. Many of them, in fact, are lifelong liberals who are in complete disbelief at what their party and peers now support (e.g., the current war policy). Because of this, what they had in common may be able to provide some valuable answers to what made some stand up over the last few years.

I have been fortunate to have been mentored by a few remarkably talented physicians. In turn, I have often wondered what set them apart from their peers, and in all instances, I found the following to be true:

  • They were “awake” individuals (which is also why they were willing to open up to me).

  • They did not rely on social proof to make decisions (I suspect this tendency increases with age, as that was my experience).

  • They tried to remain invisible and not publicly promote themselves (e.g., most of them still do not have websites).

  • They were very perceptive and frequently utilized this capacity in conjunction with their intuition and vast medical knowledge to practice medicine.

  • They had a spiritual faith (most commonly Christianity) they held a deep conviction in following.

  • They had a deep commitment to morality.

Note: Morality is another subject that I believe essentially boils down to those who follow it because they want to be moral versus those who follow it for convenience. The former are willing to suffer to do what they feel is right and put a lot of thought into the proper ways to handle difficult situations.

The latter are typically looking for ways to manipulate the existing rules of ethics to get what they want. This is a major problem in medicine, and I recently shared a court case against a doctor who forcefully vaccinated two teenagers that illustrates many of the shortcomings in the current model of medical ethics.

A reader I’ve corresponded with for the last year reached out to me to share what happened to him, and since I felt people needed to hear, I offered to publish it. Dr. Miller has a powerful story, and the primary purpose of the rest of this article is to provide the context to further appreciate the importance of what he is sharing.

Dr. Miller’s story went viral and aired on Fox News for the whole country to see a few days later. There Dr. Miller did a remarkable job articulating its key points in the 5 minutes that were allotted to him:

Dr Miller on Fox News

Shortly after, he gave a longer interview on the Alison Morrow show, which filled in many of the other key details within his story:

James Miller Being Interviewed by Alison Morrow

Dr. Miller worked as a trauma surgeon (something very difficult to do, which requires a significantly larger investment than the typical path doctors follow to enter practice). During COVID-19, he saw that everyone, including colleagues he’d trusted for years, had lost their minds and were following a COVID-19 narrative that was at odds with reality.

Once the vaccines entered the market, he saw discrimination begin against the unvaccinated, which went against every principle of medical ethics he had been taught and had never seen throughout his career.

Eventually, he got fed up with the cruelty he was seeing and decided to start a free clinic because many of the unvaccinated patients abandoned by the medical system were suffering greatly and sometimes dying. Because he did this, he was retaliated against and eventually had to flee the state so he would not permanently lose his medical license. Three things stand out about Dr. Miller’s story.

  • The personality traits that drove him to do what he did are very similar to those I have observed in many of my mentors listed in the previous section. So, if you want to get an appreciation for them, Dr. Miller’s interviews are the best examples I can provide.

  • Dr. Miller provides an excellent example of what we all expect from physicians and what we, as the public, should encourage them to be.

  • Dr. Miller’s experiences help to explain what drove physicians to not conform to the COVID-19 and vaccine narrative. I will also note that friends of other (now famous) doctors who have stood against the vaccines have told me that those doctors shared many of the same motivations Dr. Miller did.

In every era, remarkable individuals appear who can see what no one before them saw. They then create a variety of innovations from their observations that significantly advance humanity and have the internal strength to bring their message to the world regardless of the persecution they receive for doing so.

I believe these individuals represent the awake individuals found within the strictest cut-off for the definition and that their nature is a quality some people are born with that is entirely independent of how they were raised.

The best metaphor I have seen for this is how individuals deal with trauma. Most people who have traumatic childhoods are scarred by that experience for life (e.g., even the CDC acknowledges the severe and lifelong impacts of childhood trauma).

Yet, every once in a while, I meet someone who had a truly horrific childhood, that without any outside help, somehow has gotten completely past what happened to them and is a remarkably compassionate individual who accomplishes a great deal during their lifetime. In cases like these, I can only interpret that capacity as being something the individual was born with.

Note: Since trauma tragically is such a common issue, I attempted to compile my thoughts on the subject and approaches I have found helpful for dealing with it here.

Over the last month I’ve worked on this article, I kept coming back to the same question — what causes some people to resist a mass formation? Saying someone is “awake” describes a commonly shared characteristic but still is a cop-out — saying someone was intrinsically resistant to falling for the narrative doesn’t explain why they didn’t fall for it. Today one of the answers finally came to me.

When I was in middle school and high school, I noticed many of the things people found meaning in life from were ultimately just them experiencing brief highs from dopamine rushes inside their brains. While that rush is classically associated with things like cocaine, it also holds for attaining any expectation one has held, and since our entire marketing system is built around fulfilling expectations, this comes up a lot.

In my case, once an expectation was fulfilled, I never experienced those rushes. Because of this, more and more, I only saw the whole process as a series of brief highs that would fade away and have nothing of substance behind them. Since I lacked the “high” to make life seem real and meaningful, it forced me to do a lot of thinking about what type of life purpose and focus I could pursue that would feel real and meaningful — which was very difficult.

the fulcrum

Note: The above image shows a 2-dimensional fulcrum. The concept I am aiming to illustrate is in 3+ dimensions, but I am using this image because the concept is difficult to show in higher dimensions.

A fulcrum in this context is defined as the point which supports a system and the system organized around. One of my realizations in my early search for meaning and purpose in life was that almost every person’s mind had to have a “fulcrum” to support it, and if a fulcrum was not present, the mind could not function. Because of this, if people had the choice between a bad fulcrum or no fulcrum, they would always choose the bad psychological fulcrum.

Note: The filters that frame each person’s perception of reality are often determined by their pre-existing psychological fulcrum.

The thing that initially clued me into this was a few discussions with peers where I sought to understand why they so fanatically clung to dysfunctional ideologies, and in each case, I heard the same story:

“I was in a very bad place in life where I felt hopeless and as though my life had no meaning, then I was introduced to [the adopted ideology] by a very charismatic and intelligent individual who proved* to me beyond a shadow of a doubt that [the ideology] was true.

I became overjoyed there as finally a purpose and meaning to my life, and ever since then I’ve dedicated myself to promoting this ideology.”

*in each case I looked at, the “proof” was very questionable.

From these events, I realized the individual lacking an existing psychological fulcrum while simultaneously being unwilling to do the difficult work to develop their own made them extremely vulnerable to adopting whatever psychological fulcrum was forced upon them. This brings me to one of my all time favorite quotes (which has many variations and authors it has been attributed to):

“If you don’t stand for something, you fall for anything.”

Each of the well-known COVID dissidents I had gotten to know, beyond being an “awake” individual, as James Miller demonstrated in his interviews, also had, for one reason or another, a strongly developed psychological fulcrum before the pandemic began.

This lies in contrast to much of the population, who, instead of following a clear purpose they chose for themselves, move through life in a walking daze and adopt whatever (often corporate-sponsored) psychological fulcrum society forces upon them.

As the years have gone by, this has become a larger and larger issue because each of the anchors which previously gave us purpose and meaning (a strong community, a traditional family, a faith, regularly being outside, etc.) have been systematically dismantled so individuals desperate for a psychological fulcrum will readily adopt the one fed to them.

This is especially a problem in medicine — the conditioning we undergo to adopt the allopathic ideology as our identity is difficult for anyone who has not experienced it firsthand to appreciate — and I believe this is a key reason so few doctors questioned the narrative.

In a recent article, I discussed my perspectives on developing a healthy relationship with one’s emotions and which of the many treatments out there actually improve mental health. In the article, I argued that our culture’s critical mistake is the widespread tendency to intellectualize or constrict our emotions rather than choosing to accept and experience them.

That contraction prevents the emotion from being able to exit one’s body. Instead, the emotion is patterned into the body and, eventually, one’s unconscious mind, where it exerts a profound but invisible influence over their life. In many cases, those individuals will move through life in the same disconnected walking daze observed in individuals who lack their own psychological fulcrum and likewise easily fall prey to malicious external influences.

Trapped emotions cause many other issues, too, such as significantly worsening one’s moment-by-moment experience of life, compelling people to make self-sabotaging decisions their rational mind would never support, and disconnecting the individual from experiencing life. For all of these reasons, oppressive governments seeking to control the public always encourage this emotional suppression.

At the same time, wise individuals throughout the ages have continually reechoed the refrain that their fellow human beings needed to stop closing down their hearts.

The most common reasons why we habitually contract our emotions are the discomfort of experiencing the emotion (especially if it is painful) and the strain our awareness (particularly within the heart) is placed under when its reality is expanded to something outside of its familiar comfort zone.

For example, consider the psychological impact of having to both accept everything you thought you knew for over a decade was wrong and no longer knowing where to go or what to trust. Because of the difficulty in doing that, many will instead choose to follow the crowd and adopt its psychological fulcrum instead of taking on the responsibility of developing and maintaining their own.

In the same manner we contract the feelings within our hearts, as the previous example shows, we also contract the thoughts within our minds. In my own experience, I’ve found that while many crave the comfort of contracted thoughts and emotions, awake individuals typically do the opposite — although, in many cases, that unwillingness to contract exists only in one of the two but not the other.

If we again circle back to Dr. Miller’s story, it should be clear that he had developed a psychological fulcrum that was independent of his identity as an M.D. and that he had a mind that was not willing to contract or allow him to close his eyes to what he saw going on before him.

Note: His mental resistance to contraction is likely what drove him to create a strong psychological fulcrum in the first place. Conversely, many of his peers did share this trait, and even though they knew what they were participating in was wrong (either on a conscious or subconscious level), they still went along with it and, in many cases, embraced the mass formation being fed to them.

One of Desmet’s most important observations about mass formations is that their dissolution depends if enough awake individuals who resist the narrative are also willing to speak out against it. This cuts to the core of why stories like Dr. Miller’s are so important to share, as by inspiring others to do the same, they go a long way to creating the population-wide immunity we need to prevent future mass formations from occurring.

Furthermore, Desmet highlighted what is possibly the most important part of this story. Throughout history, in the most challenging situations, where almost everyone is pulled into a mass formation and committing abhorrent actions that create deep conflicts within hearts and minds, something very interesting happens to those who nonetheless take the risk to speak out with the truth.

They are filled with a strength they cannot explain that allows them to persevere through the darkest situations imaginable, and beyond Desmet’s claim, this occurs, I have also witnessed it in many, including some of the well-known figures in this movement.

I believe this observation is because much of our internal strength depends upon having a lack of internal contractions, which in turn requires you to be free of internal conflict by following the path you know in your heart to be right (which is also something spiritual systems throughout the ages have realized). Remember:

If you don’t stand for something, you fall for anything.”

I believe that many of the problems we face now are due to a crisis of consciousness that allows people to be easily misled and a widespread loss of faith that has removed the anchors that could be relied upon to keep us from drifting astray.

In recent articles, I’ve tried to present solutions for a few of the common issues I’ve observed that hinder our ability to see what is in front of us, come together and then effectively work against the darkness that has entered our world. In addition to those mentioned previously in this article, those have included:

  • Letting go of your need to be right and covet information or truths that make one feel superior to their peers. Beyond creating division between people who should be supporting each other, this coveting blinds you from being able to see what is directly in front of you.

  • Tolerating ambiguity and accepting that until you fully understand something (which can border on impossible), there will always be contradictions with what you “know.”

  • Recognizing how we selectively edit out much of the world around us, especially when we are confronted with an excessive amount of information — something which characterizes the modern age. Many of the things we need to see around us are only visible to those who can operate without these filters.

Throughout my time observing awake individuals, I’ve noticed many traits, are consistently seen within their minds, and as best as I could I tried to list them throughout this article.

Although some of these capacities are challenging to develop, I believe much in the same way we can restore the critical anchors of life (e.g., following a faith, having genuine human connections, being connected to your body rather than an electronic screen), many of them can also be developed if it is clear what is being aimed for and our priority is to promote the greatest good.

A Midwestern Doctor (AMD) is a board-certified physician in the Midwest and a longtime reader of Mercola.com. I appreciate his exceptional insight on a wide range of topics and I’m grateful to share them. I also respect his desire to remain anonymous as he is still on the front lines treating patients. To find more of AMD’s work, be sure to check out The Forgotten Side of Medicine on Substack.

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Disclaimer: The entire contents of this website are based upon the opinions of Dr. Mercola, unless otherwise noted. Individual articles are based upon the opinions of the respective author, who retains copyright as marked.

The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as a sharing of knowledge and information from the research and experience of Dr. Mercola and his community. Dr. Mercola encourages you to make your own health care decisions based upon your research and in partnership with a qualified health care professional. The subscription fee being requested is for access to the articles and information posted on this site, and is not being paid for any individual medical advice.

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Water and Homeopathy: Discoveries at Science’s Cutting Edge

Presentation by Cambridge Professor Emeritus Brian Josephson at the conference “New Horizons in Water Science — The Evidence for Homeopathy?” (July 14, 2018), introduction by Lord Kenneth Ward-Atherton.

By: Dana Ullman, MPH, CCH and Lionel Milgrom, Ph.D., RHom, MARH

  • A major research conference took place at London’s Royal Society of Medicine that confirmed the therapeutic effects of extremely small doses (nanodoses) of homeopathic medicines

  • Two Nobel Prize-winning scientists and other esteemed researchers from across the world presented compelling evidence that medicinal agents not only persist in water, but they retain therapeutic effects in these nanodoses

  • Our bodies’ hormones and cell-signaling systems also operate at this super small nanodose level

  • Professor Vladimir Voeikov asserted Russian scientists had known for decades that tiny doses of medicines have dramatic effects on biological systems

  • Professor Jerry Pollack of the University of Washington is one of the leading experts on water who reported on his research, which confirms water has the capacity to store huge amounts of medicinal information, enabling homeopathic nanodoses to fully impact a person’s physiology

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Editor’s Note: This article is a reprint. It was originally published October 31, 2018.

If the common physician, scientist and educated consumer were to believe Wikipedia, they would assume that there is absolutely no research that shows the efficacy of homeopathic medicines in the treatment of any ailment. Furthermore, they would conclude homeopathic medicines are so small in dose, there is literally “nothing” in a homeopathic medicine.

And, if you are this gullible and vulnerable to Big Pharma propaganda, then we’ve got an island to sell you for $24! According to The Washington Post, Wikipedia’s article on homeopathy and Jesus Christ are the two most controversial on that website in four leading languages (English, French, German and Spanish).

The fact of the matter is that research showing the efficacy of homeopathic medicines has been published in some of the world’s most respected medical journals. Here’s a roll call of just a few of them:

The Lancet;


(British Medical Journal); Chest (the publication of the American College of Chest Physicians);

Pediatrics (publication of the American Academy of Pediatrics);

Cancer (journal of the American Cancer Society);

Journal of Clinical Oncology;

Pediatrics Infectious Disease Journal (publication of the European Society of Pediatric Infectious Diseases);

European Journal of Pediatrics (publication of the Swiss Society of Pediatrics and the Belgium Society of Pediatrics).

Would you be shocked to learn that Wikipedia doesn’t mention eight of the nine references here? Not only have individual studies found efficacy in homeopathic medicines, but various systematic reviews or meta-analyses have likewise concluded the effects of homeopathic medicines are different to those of a placebo.

The newest review of homeopathic research published in Systematic Reviews

confirmed a difference between the effects of homeopathic treatment and of placebo. In reviewing the “highest quality studies,” the researchers found that patients given homeopathic treatment were almost twice as likely to experience a therapeutic benefit as those given a placebo.

Further, in reviewing a total of 22 clinical trials, patients given homeopathic remedies experienced greater than 50 percent likelihood to have benefited from the treatment than those given a placebo. Once again, Wikipedia doesn’t even mention this new review of clinical research in homeopathy.

This important review of clinical research also acknowledged that four of the five leading previous systematic reviews of homeopathic research found a benefit from homeopathic treatment over that of placebo:

“Five systematic reviews have examined the RCT research literature on homeopathy as a whole, including the broad spectrum of medical conditions that have been researched and by all forms of homeopathy: four of these ‘global’ systematic reviews reached the conclusion that, with important caveats, the homeopathic intervention probably differs from placebo.”

And if that wasn’t enough, the largest and most comprehensive review of basic science research (fundamental physiochemical research, botanical studies, animal studies and in vitro studies using human cells) and clinical research into homeopathy ever sponsored by a governmental agency was undertaken recently in Switzerland.

This Swiss report affirmed that homeopathic high-potencies seem to induce regulatory effects and specific changes to cells and living organisms. It also reported that 20 of the 22 systematic reviews of clinical research testing homeopathic medicines detected at least a trend in favor of homeopathy. Would it puzzle you that this important review of homeopathic research is not even mentioned or referenced by Wikipedia?

July 14, 2018, we attended a groundbreaking conference in London entitled “New Horizons in Water Science — ‘The Evidence for Homeopathy?'” in the hallowed halls of the U.K.’s Royal Society of Medicine.

Held at the behest of (Lord) Aaron Kenneth Ward-Atherton, who organized and chaired the event, Ward-Atherton not only is a practicing homeopath and integrated medical physician, but also has been a formal adviser on integrated medicine to a member of the U.K. government’s Department of Health and Social Care, and had ongoing support from various peers in the British House of Lords.

This conference will no doubt have sent shockwaves around the world, as delegates from over 20 countries listened in awe to two Nobel Laureates (Cambridge physicist Professor Emeritus Brian Josephson and AIDS virus discoverer, Dr. Luc Montagnier) and several world-class scientists of equal academic stature from the U.S., U.K., Israel and Russia.

And what they were saying was pure heresy to conventional medicine! As it turns out, research in water science seems to support the notion there is a significant difference between the biological and physical actions of homeopathic medicines and plain ordinary water.

We should point out that this special conference did not try to review the body of clinical research (above) that verifies the efficacy of homeopathic medicines, nor did it seek to describe all the basic science studies that show that homeopathic medicines have biological or physical effects.

Instead, this conference chose to focus on more fundamental questions: Does the process of remedy production in homeopathy (i.e., dilution and succession — vigorous shaking — of a medicinal substance in water/alcohol) have an effect on the water’s long-range structure that is different from simple pure water? And, second, are their sound and plausible explanations for how homeopathic medicines persist in water solutions despite multiple dilutions?

Because most physicians and scientists are completely unfamiliar with the fascinating and amazing qualities and abilities of water, their assertions on what is and isn’t possible with homeopathic medicines represent an embarrassingly uninformed viewpoint.

Such assertions are at best unscientific; at worst, they simply represent sheer ignorance. The best scientists are humble in their assertions due to the fact that they know their knowledge is always limited. The average physician or scientist, however, may tend to arrogance, particularly on those subjects which they actually know nothing about.

Brian Josephson Ph.D., of University of Cambridge, U.K., was the first speaker. He echoed remarks he had made in the magazine New Scientist, saying:

“Simple-minded analysis might suggest that water, being a fluid, it cannot have a structure of the kind that such a picture would demand. But cases such as that of liquid crystals, which while flowing like an ordinary fluid can maintain an ordered structure over macroscopic distances, show the limitations of such ways of thinking.

There have not, to the best of my knowledge, been any refutations of homeopathy that remain valid after this particular point is taken into account.”

Josephson powerfully critiqued generally accepted theories of how biomolecules react with their substrates. Conventionally, these are thought to “match” like a lock and a key, but only when they are in direct physical contact. Not so, says Josephson.

Like his famous predecessor, Jacques Benveniste (who Josephson hosted at Cambridge’s Cavendish Laboratory back in March 1999), he argues that they can “communicate” over some distance long before they come together, and that such interactions are best described by quantum theory and electromagnetic signaling.

Josephson also lambasted those scientists who demand that homeopathic medicines need to get “chemically analyzed.” He asserted that applying chemical analysis to homeopathic remedies will tell you no more about their properties than applying chemical analysis to a CD will tell you what music is on it. Chemical analysis is too limited a tool for either.

Further, Josephson went on to show some remarkably beautiful photos and videos that provide powerful evidence of how hypersensitive water is to sound. Using an impressive new technology called cymascopy (developed by acoustics engineer John Stuart Reid),

Josephson was able to demonstrate the incredible influence sound has on water using this technology, producing stunning dynamic wave patterns in water that follow changes in a sound’s pitch.

This video shows dramatically how the dynamic structure of water changes as music is played. And for this to occur, there has to be an ordering of molecules within the water to give it that dynamic structure, what is commonly referred to as a “memory.”

“Such is life,” Josephson concluded. “Order arises spontaneously. Creation of order (ordering) is a part of nature. Order includes disorder (fluctuations), so order requires order to be present. With crystals, the order is static; with life it is dynamic. There we have ordering within activity. Up until now, our present understanding of all this is qualitative and limited, but this must be the next step for science.”

Finally, Josephson wryly responded to the chronic ignorance of homeopathy by its skeptics saying, “The idea that water can have a memory can be readily refuted by any one of a number of easily understood, invalid arguments.”

Next to speak was Vladimir Voeikov from the Lomonosov Moscow State University in Russia. A world expert on the chemical and physical properties of aqueous systems and their key role in the vital processes of living systems, Voeikov also took aim at critics who scoff at homeopathy’s plausibility.

He then launched into a description of the extensive and highly detailed work on the biological effects of ultrahigh dilutions (or UHDs) that has been ongoing in Russia since the 1980s.

One of the unfortunate side effects of the perennial distrust existing between Russia and the West has been access to research like this, mainly because it has appeared only in Russian (i.e., Cyrillic) journals. Consequently, Voeikov had a lot of ground to make up — which he did in no uncertain terms!

And, much to the audience’s surprise, it turns out that Benveniste (who in 1988 was so pilloried by scientists, skeptics and the journal Nature, his reputation was trashed and he lost his laboratories and his funding) was by no means the first to suggest that solutions diluted and strongly agitated to the point where there couldn’t possibly be any molecules of the original substance left could still exert biological effects.

Delving back into the literature, it had been announced around a century before Benveniste. In 1955, a review had already been published into the action of UHDs.

Drawing on his and his Russian colleagues’ work, Voeikov concluded that conventional ideas of how water dissolves substances is actually incorrect. Until now, when something dissolves in water, its particles were thought to be randomly distributed throughout the solvent. As the solution is continually diluted, these particles simply reduce in number until at a certain dilution (known as the Avogadro limit) they disappear completely.

Consequently, if a solution is diluted beyond this limit, as there are apparently no particles left, such UHDs cannot possibly exert any effects, let alone on biological systems. Therefore, homeopathy (which sometimes uses dilutions of substances way beyond the Avogadro limit) must be complete bunkum. So much for conventional thinking.

What Voeikov and his colleagues have shown time and again is that the process of homeopathic dilution and agitation, even down past the Avogadro limit (so that no particles are supposed to still be present), does NOT get rid of all the dissolved substance.

Instead, microscopically tiny “clumps” of the dissolved substance — known as nanoassociates — remain behind and these are biologically active. What’s more, various analytical techniques can be used to track these nanoassociates, and they affect water in many ways that make it different from pure water, e.g., electrical conductivity and surface tension. So, a solution diluted and agitated beyond the Avogadro limit is anything but pure water.

If that wasn’t enough, Voeikov and his colleagues have shown that so-called ordinary solutions — the kind that we make up every day and that have not been sequentially diluted and agitated as homeopaths do — also contain nanoassociates, violating what has for years been understood as “laws of behavior” prescribed in standard textbooks on aqueous solutions.

So, not only are all those skeptics and naysayers going to have to get used to homeopathic dilutions and their effects being real, they will have to completely reassess their understanding of what happens when ANY substance is dissolved in water. Those whose solemn duty it is to rewrite textbooks are going to have a field day!

Barely able to catch our breath, we were then treated to one of the most inspirational talks of the whole conference, delivered by Jerry Pollack, Ph.D., professor of bioengineering at Seattle’s University of Washington. Pollack is probably best known for his 2014 book, “The Fourth Phase of Water: Beyond Solid, Liquid, and Vapor,” in which he outlines in highly readable terms some of his and his team’s amazing discoveries about water.

Chiefly, these concern what happens to water when it is in contact with a surface, e.g., a membrane. And for any doubting Thomas out there we should point out that Pollack’s amazing discoveries about water have been independently verified many times.

It turns out that the water molecules closest to the membrane surface form an almost crystalline alignment that has the effect of excluding any dissolved particles in the water. And these exclusion zones — or EZs, as they are called — have properties that are totally different from the bulk water, and whose consequences will have profound effects not only on our understanding of water, but how we use it.

For example, depending on the nature of the membrane surface, charge separation occurs between the EZ layer and the bulk water phase. Pollack showed us how this phenomenon could be used, not only to produce an incredibly simple battery powered only by radiant energy, but how it could be the basis of a water desalination system.

At the moment, this last application would need to be scaled up before it could be of any practical use, but if it could, there must surely be a Nobel Prize in the offing.

In addition, bearing in mind that blood is mainly water being pumped through tubes of biological membranes, Pollack suggested that the same charge-separating mechanism that powered his radiant energy battery might also assist in pushing our blood through narrow vessels far removed from the pumping action of the heart. If so, such a discovery will have huge ramifications for our understanding of physiology.

It turns out that Pollack’s semi-crystalline EZs cannot only be separated, they are able to electromagnetically store information in their molecular structure. And, as the preparation of homeopathic remedies also involves water solutions in contact with surfaces, it is quite feasible his new EZ discoveries will have a huge impact on our understanding of water memory and homeopathy.

In fact, Pollack asserts that water has a HUGE capacity to store information. Further, he notes that homeopathic process of succussion (vigorous shaking of water in glass) creates increased avenues for EZ water that then creates increased water storage.

The founder of homeopathy, Dr. Samuel Hahnemann (1755-1843), was both a physician and the author of a leading textbook for pharmacists of his day. His many experiments attempting to reduce the harmful side effects of medicinal substances, led him to a method of dilution and agitation which homeopaths use till this day.

Intriguingly, what the new science presented at this conference is telling us is that Hahnemann’s method seems to optimize storage of medicinal information within the very structure of water itself! Even after more than 200 years, Hahnemann’s discovery of homeopathy and his contributions to medicine and pharmacology are still being uncovered.

Nobel Prize winner Luc Montagnier was introduced to homeopathy and homeopathic research by Benveniste. In a remarkable interview published in Science magazine of December 24, 2010,

Montagnier expressed support for the often maligned and misunderstood medical specialty of homeopathic medicine.

“What I can say now is that the high dilutions (used in homeopathy) are right. High dilutions of something are not nothing. They are water structures which mimic the original molecules.”

Montagnier concluded the interview when asked if he is concerned that he is drifting into pseudoscience. He replied adamantly: “No, because it’s not pseudoscience. It’s not quackery. These are real phenomena which deserve further study.”

Montagnier’s study found that under the right conditions electromagnetic signals can be transmitted from test tubes containing a highly diluted DNA sample to a different test tube containing only water, and that when enzymes which copy DNA molecules are then added to this water, they behave as if DNA molecules are present, producing new DNA molecules.

This “teleportation” effect of the DNA, from one test tube to another was found to occur only when the homeopathic procedure of sequential dilution, with vigorous shaking of the test tube, was utilized. Also, Montagnier cowrote with several highly-respected scientists another article that was published in a leading scientific journal.

This article posits quantum effects beyond simple chemistry.

Montagnier’s studies found that highly diluted DNA from pathogenic bacterial and viral species is able to emit specific radio waves and that “these radio waves [are] associated with ‘nanostructures’ in the solution that might be able to recreate the pathogen.”

A writer for New Scientist magazine has asserted that, if its conclusions are true, “these would be the most significant experiments performed in the past 90 years, demanding reevaluation of the whole conceptual framework of modern chemistry.”

While Montagnier’s work shows the influence of electromagnetic fields having a biological effect, other researchers at the conference found that nanodoses of the original homeopathic medicine persists in water solutions. Jayesh Bellare of the prestigious India Institute of Technology described his seminal research that was published in Langmuir, a highly-respected journal published by the American Chemistry Society.

Bellare and his colleagues found that six different homeopathic medicines, all made from minerals (gold, silver, copper, tin, zinc and platinum), that were diluted 1-to-100, six times, 30 times and 200 times, were each found in nanodoses from one of three different types of spectroscopy.

Bellare and his team explained that homeopathic medicines are usually made in glass bottles, and the vigorous shaking of the water in these bottles releases nanosized fragments of silica from the glass walls, and the substance being made into a medicine is literally pushed into these floating silica “chips.”

Then, when 99 percent of the water is poured out, the silica chips cling to the glass walls. The scientists found each of the six minerals persisting in the water no matter how many times they diluted the medicine. When one considers that many of the most important hormones and cell-signaling agents of the body operate at nanodose levels, the nanodoses found in homeopathic medicines may explain how these medicines work.

Still further, the fact that nanodoses are much more able to cross the blood-brain-barrier as well as most cell membranes provides additional insight into how and why homeopathic nanodoses can elicit significant and powerful immune responses from the body.

The day after Ullman’s interview with Dr. Joseph Mercola, a very important study on homeopathy was published on the website of one of the world’s leading scientific journals, Nature.

Nature.com just published a collection of studies that tested different homeopathic potencies of Rhus toxicodendron (also known as Rhus tox and Toxicodendron pubescens, commonly known as poison ivy), including 2X, 4X, 6X, 8X, 12X, 24X and 30X in the treatment of neuropathy in rats.

Previous research had found that Rhus toxicodendron has significant anti-inflammatory, anti-arthritic and immunomodulatory activities. This new research evaluated antinociceptive (pain-reducing) efficacy of Rhus tox in the neuropathic pain and delineated its underlying mechanism. More specifically, this research found that this homeopathic medicine showed significant antioxidative and anti-inflammatory properties.

This study found that homeopathic doses of Rhus tox 24X and 30X had dramatic effects that equaled the results from a known conventional drug, Gabapentin, and did so in much safer doses. Conventional scientists have consistently asserted that these extremely small doses of homeopathic medicines could not have ANY effects, but this study, like an increasing number of other such studies, has proven conventional scientists are wrong.

The above described study didn’t investigate the influence of water in its study, but it did confirm that homeopathic nanodoses can have powerful biological and clinical effects.

This article is dedicated to Dr. Peter Fisher, the now-late physician to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. A graduate of University of Cambridge and a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and the Faculty of Homeopathy, he was a widely published expert in rheumatology and forms of complementary and alternative medicine.

Fisher chaired the World Health Organization’s working group on homeopathy and was a member of WHO’s Expert Advisory Panel on Traditional and Complementary Medicine. He served as clinical director for 18 years and director of research at the Royal London Hospital for Integrated Medicine (formerly the Royal London Homoeopathic Hospital) for 22 years.

He was also president of the Faculty of Homeopathy and editor-in-chief of the journal Homeopathy (the leading research journal in the field). Fisher was awarded the Polish Academy of Medicine’s Albert Schweitzer Gold Medal in 2007. Fisher also served as moderator for the second half of the homeopathic research conference discussed in this article.

Besides all of his academic achievements, Fisher had a wicked, dry, even very dry, British sense of humor. He was known to provide scathing critiques of the many uninformed and ill-informed skeptics of homeopathy whose criticisms of homeopathy simply proved their sheer ignorance of the subject. Sadly, August 15, 2018, Fisher was riding his bicycle in London on “drive your bike to work day,” and was hit by a truck and killed.

Dana Ullman, MPH, CCH, is a certified homeopath who has written 10 books on homeopathy and four chapters in medical textbooks, and who has published 40 books on homeopathy by his colleagues (co-published with North Atlantic Books). He directs Homeopathic Educational Services, a leading homeopathic resource center to help people access homeopathic books, medicines, software and e-courses (homeopathic.com).

He has also created a special e-course on “Learning to Use a Homeopathic Medicine Kit” (details at homeopathicfamilymedicine.com). He also maintains a homeopathic practice where he “sees” most of his patients via Skype, various video apps, or the simple telephone.

Lionel R Milgrom, Ph.D. FRSC FRSA MARH RHom is a registered homeopath who has been a research chemist for 40 years (cofounder of a university anticancer biotech spin-out company) with many publications and a text book to his credit. He has been a practicing homeopath for 20 years.

His main research interest these days is in the understanding of homeopathy within both scientific and philosophical contexts, and has published extensively in these areas. He has also published the first volume of an e-book trilogy, “Homeopathy and Science: A Guide for the Perplexed.”

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Disclaimer: The entire contents of this website are based upon the opinions of Dr. Mercola, unless otherwise noted. Individual articles are based upon the opinions of the respective author, who retains copyright as marked.

The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as a sharing of knowledge and information from the research and experience of Dr. Mercola and his community. Dr. Mercola encourages you to make your own health care decisions based upon your research and in partnership with a qualified health care professional. The subscription fee being requested is for access to the articles and information posted on this site, and is not being paid for any individual medical advice.

If you are pregnant, nursing, taking medication, or have a medical condition, consult your health care professional before using products based on this content.

Disinfectant Wipes Are Linked to Health Problems

disinfectant wipes are linked to health problems

  • Quaternary ammonium compounds are also referred to as “QACs” or “quats.” They are a popular ingredient in disinfectant wipes, which Clorox increased production of to 1.5 million packs per day during the pandemic

  • One survey suggests 83% of households asked used disinfectant wipes at least one time in the previous week and 29% claimed to use them every day. Researchers found that the chemicals contribute to antimicrobial resistance, pollute the environment and are linked to several health issues

  • Serum concentrations of QACs rose from 2019 to 2020 in a sample of 111 participants; although school systems began using wipes to clean student desks after the return to school, the National Pesticide Information Center warns that children should not use disinfectant wipes due to exposure to toxins

  • A 2017 animal study revealed exposure to quats could have transgenerational effects in animals that were not exposed to the quats. Animals have also exhibited reproductive dysfunction after respiratory and contact exposure to QACs

  • A clean and decluttered home is a sanctuary from the outside world, but when you use harsh chemicals and rubber gloves to get the job done, you’re likely doing more harm than good. Instead, choose nontoxic and multiuse combinations to clean, deodorize and polish your home

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Quaternary ammonium compounds are also called “QACs” or “quats.” They are a broad class of several hundred chemicals and are commonly used in wood preservatives, mouthwash, detergents, shampoos, fabric softeners, eye drops and herbicides. QACs are largely used in the U.S.

While the European Union has not banned QACs,

the regulating agency has set a very low maximum residue level (MRL) of 0.01 mg per kilogram (mg/kg) for pesticides used on food or animal feed.

Applications in the U.S. range from industrial, clinical, domestic and agricultural. They can be measured in food production, households, facilities and medical settings. According to data from the University of Massachusetts,

some ready-to-use products, like disinfectant hand wipes, can contain up to 20% active QAC ingredients and industrial concentrations may contain up to 80% of the active ingredients. 

In the University of Massachusetts’ review

they write that, of the disinfectants approved by the EPA

for use during the COVID-19 pandemic, more than half are QAC-based. After reviewing the hazards, the Toxics Use Reduction Institute Science Advisory Board recommended some of these chemicals be added to the list of toxic or hazardous substances and policy implications based on this analysis should be considered.

In mid-2020, at the start of the pandemic, researchers

found QAC was an active ingredient in over 200 disinfectants recommended by the EPA. The researchers believed the amount of these compounds had increased and would likely continue to increase. In the past QACs had been found in sediment, surface water and wastewater. These researchers believed that the elevated use of QACs was a reasonable response to the SARS-CoV-2 infection.

Some organizations, such as the Chemical Safety Facts

website sponsored by the American Chemistry Council, boldly claim that the EPA and other authorities regulate disinfection products and that “quat-based ingredients undergo rigorous testing to determine that they will not have unreasonable adverse effects on human health and the environment when used as directed.”

Yet, that claim is not substantiated by the EPA or CDC. The CDC states, “a manufacturer must submit specific data about the safety and effectiveness of each product.” and “With respect to disinfectants and sterilants, part of CDC’s role is … to comment about their safety and efficacy …”

According to the EPA website

they “register products that sanitize and disinfect.” In other words, while the chemical industry would like consumers to believe the products sold on the grocery store shelves are regulated and safety tested, the reality is that the safety testing is done by the manufacturer and the data they choose is forwarded to the FDA, EPA, or other regulating agency.

Global use of disinfectant wipes rose dramatically during the pandemic. According to the 2021 annual report from just one company that produces wipes — The Clorox Company

— to meet the demand for disinfectant wipes, they created a new production line that increased the total production capacity to 1.5 million packs per day, which the company anticipated ramping up even further.

A press release

from an industry trade group published at nearly the same time claimed 83% of households had used disinfectant wipes at least one time in the past week and 92% of consumers claim to use a cleaning, disinfecting or sanitizing wipe. Not surprisingly, the same survey revealed 29% of people asked said they used a wipe-type product every day.

Although quats are a common ingredient in popular disinfectant wipes, a 2023 peer-reviewed paper

published in Environmental Science and Technology revealed several disturbing facts. The review of the literature was performed by a multi-institutional, multidisciplinary team of scientists from nonprofit, academic and governmental organizations.

They reviewed the available information on both human health and the environment from exposure to QACs. As The Guardian reported,

the researchers found that chemicals contribute to antimicrobial resistance, pollute the environment and are linked to several health issues.

Strong proponents may argue that if they are effective, these issues may not be as severe as protecting human health against viruses and bacteria. However, the researchers also concluded that they are not particularly effective. Among the health issues associated with exposure to quats are infertility, metabolic disruption, asthma, birth defects and skin disorders, The Guardian says.

These are a high price to pay to use disinfectant products that do not protect against the spread of COVID-19 since it spreads through respiratory transmission.

A 2021 study

published in Environmental Science and Technology looked at serum concentrations of QACs in 111 people. The samples were collected in 2019 and again in 2020 during the pandemic. Researchers found serum levels were significantly higher in the samples collected in 2020 than in the prior samples.

According to the National Pesticide Information Center,

“Children should not apply antimicrobials, including disinfectant wipes,” because of the danger associated with quats. Yet, as The Guardian notes,

children and teachers regularly used disinfectant wipes on classroom desks in a misguided effort to avoid COVID. Instead, children are being exposed to alarming levels of these dangerous chemicals.

A 2023 paper

in the Journal of Hazardous Materials, called the use of disinfectant wipes containing QACs “of significant concern due to their overuse during this pandemic.” Researchers found QACs rose by 331% at wastewater treatment plants when compared to levels before the pandemic.

Researchers also found a 62% increase in the concentration of QACs in residential dust, which leads to higher concentrations in human blood and breast milk. They pointed out that in addition to toxicity to humans and the environment, quats also multiply the threat of antimicrobial resistance.

While the rising contamination of the environment from quats throughout the pandemic was a result of the increased use of disinfectant wipes, disinfectant wipes are not the only product containing quats. Children and adults are exposed to these chemicals from multiple sources, including household and commercial cleaning products and personal care products.

QACs are positively charged ions that bind to the hair shaft. For this reason, they are included in shampoos and conditioners to give hair a slippery feel so fingers glide through the hair and there is less fly-away hair.

QACs are also used as preservatives in hand lotions and cosmetics. Among those are quaternium-15, polyquaternium-9, and cetyl pyridinium chloride, all of which are known to trigger contact dermatitis.

Quaternium-15 is a known formaldehyde releaser

and formaldehyde is carcinogenic with a high probability of causing cancer and a moderate risk of allergic reaction and immunotoxicity.

In 2017, a study

published by Virginia Tech and Washington State University researchers demonstrated that exposure to chemicals that are commonly found in household and commercial cleaning products can lead to birth defects in an animal model. The Environmental Working Group (EWG)

believes the study is “particularly significant” since it is the first known analysis of the impact of combinations of quaternary ammonium compounds on embryos or fetuses.

In 2016,

the same team of researchers published the results of a study in which they analyzed how exposure to a quats mixture may impair fertility. In this earlier animal model study, the researchers found that female and male mice exposed to quats exhibited reproductive dysfunction, including fewer ovulations and implantations, and decreased sperm concentration and motility.

Even ambient and low-dose exposures in male mice had a significant effect on sperm parameters. Both studies analyzed alkyl dimethyl benzyl ammonium chloride and didecyl dimethyl ammonium chloride chemicals, which the EWG determined in 2017 were found in more than 170 products. However, as the EWG writes, “This is a conservative estimate given that many manufacturers may not list these ingredients at all.”

The EWG also notes, one of these products is infant diapers, exposing our most vulnerable population.

In the 2017 study, the researchers exposed animals to a combination of consumption, respiratory and surface residues of the mixtures of disinfectants. The EWG reported

that the scientists found a 150% increase in the rate of neural tube defects.

Neural tube defects are a type of abnormality found in the development of the spinal cord or brain. They can manifest as spina bifida or damage to the development of the brain, such as anencephaly in which part of the brain is missing, encephalocele when there’s an opening to the brain and the membranes or iniencephaly where the spine is exceptionally distorted.

Importantly, they found that respiratory and surface exposure had a greater impact on the development of neural tube defects than on deliberately feeding the animals the quats. They also found that maternal exposure may also trigger transgenerational defects that persist even in animals that are not directly exposed.

In other words, female mice exposed to quats may deliver normal babies who then go on to deliver babies with neural tube defects even though they were not exposed to the quats. The researchers concluded:

“These results demonstrate that ADBAC+DDAC in combination are teratogenic to rodents. Given the increased use of these disinfectants, further evaluation of their safety in humans and their contribution to health and disease is essential.”

A 2018 study

from the University of Bergen in Norway also demonstrated that using cleaning products once a week for 20 years may be the equivalent of smoking 20 cigarettes a day for 10 to 20 years. The researchers were interested in the long-term effects that cleaning supplies had on health as much of the documented evidence has been on the short-term impact.

The study

compared women who cleaned weekly and those who did not and found the forced vital capacity, or the amount of air a person can forcibly exhale after taking a deep breath, declined by 7.1 ml per year faster in women who worked as cleaners as compared to 4.3 ml per year in women who cleaned it home. Senior study author Dr. Cecilie Svanes, said in a statement:

“While the short-term effects of cleaning chemicals on asthma are becoming increasingly well documented, we lack knowledge of the long-term impact. We feared that such chemicals, by steadily causing a little damage to the airways day after day, year after year, might accelerate the rate of lung function decline that occurs with age.”

A clean and decluttered home is a sanctuary from the outside world, but when you use harsh chemicals and rubber gloves to get the job done, you’re likely doing more harm than good. The good news is you don’t need to buy chemical cleansers to keep your home clean. With a few natural and nontoxic staples, you can save money and keep your house clean.

Baking soda is one of those staples. To prepare for the Statue of Liberty’s 100th anniversary in 1986,

crews were tasked with removing 99 years’ worth of coal tar from the inner copper walls without damaging the structure. More than 100 tons of baking soda was brought in to clean the statue, so there’s a good chance it can remove the dirt and grime from around your house too.

Both lemon peel and juice are good for cleaning and deodorizing. Distilled white vinegar is another cleaning staple with a long history. It makes a good window cleaner and has disinfectant properties. However, do not clean your shower walls with vinegar as it removes the grout sealer, which can let in water and damage the wall behind the tile.

Castile soap is natural, biodegradable and chemical-free and can be used for personal care, house cleaning and laundry. For a list of ways to use these nontoxic products and more, see “Top 8 Nontoxic Cleaners You Can Use at Home.”

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