X22Report and Sputnik News, “Iran”… Another CIA “Blacksite” dismantled 6-17-19… “Arrests Made as Iran Busts ‘Large’ CIA-Run Network…”

This really “struck brightly” when I ran across this, because, well, it was clear to me that the whole “Iran ship being struck” (by whatever), was a deep state operation, and now this article comes out, reporting that, indeed, the CIA in Iran was being taken out.

First it was North Korea, now it is Iran. This operation appears to be one where the deep state CIA network is, step by step, being dismantled around the planet. Q has mentioned several times, about Iran, saying that after Korea, Iran was next (Iran next).

From Q post 888 (3-8-18):

“Thank you Kim. Deal made. Clowns out. Strings cut. We took control. Iran next. Q”

One note about the article, one can notice several “vehement” remarks about “America” or “US”, and this actually refers to “deep state US”, aka, “CIA of the USA”, aka, “US clown show” (Q calls the CIA “clowns” (Clowns In America”).

I’m placing the video just below the highlights. Enjoy the ride.

[SputnikNews article] “Iran has dismantled a CIA-run “large US cyber-espionage” network, the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) reported, citing the secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, Ali Shamkhani.

“”…Given the cooperation between the Islamic Republic of Iran and other countries in creating an ‘international organisation to counter American espionage’, we provided our partners with information that led to the disclosure and dismantling of a network of CIA officers, as well as detention and punishment of several spies in different countries”…

“”Suspicious acts in the Gulf of Oman against oil tankers… seem to be supplementary to the [US] economic sanctions as the Americans went nowhere with the sanctions, [also] especially given America’s historical record in the area [of false flag ops]“, Speaker of the Iranian Parliament Ali Larijani said over the weekend.

[x22Report] “The [DS] impeachment push is falling apart. Obama shadows Trump and is now visiting the leaders of Italy, I wonder why? Discovery is a beautiful thing, RS wants the un-redacted Crowdstrike report. Iran is reporting that they broke up an intelligence operation in Iran, is this patriots removing the blacksite in Iran, next comes the deal.



Arrests Made as Iran Busts ‘Large’ CIA-Run Network – Reports

The development comes against the backdrop of tensions between the United States and Iran that dramatically escalated last week, when Washington accused Tehran of being behind attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman.

Iran has dismantled a CIA-run “large US cyber-espionage” network, the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) reported, citing the secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, Ali Shamkhani.

“Given the cooperation between the Islamic Republic of Iran and other countries in creating an ‘international organisation to counter American espionage’, we provided our partners with information that led to the disclosure and dismantling of a network of CIA officers, as well as detention and punishment of several spies in different countries”, the senior official said.

Shamkhani added that since some aspects of the case have already been disclosed by the CIA itself, the Ministry of Intelligence can also publish the documents.

The development comes a few days after Iran urged the United States to cease “warmongering” and false flag operations in the region after Washington accused Tehran of being behind attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman.

The Iranian side has vehemently denied the allegations and called on the US to stop the “blame game“.

“Suspicious acts in the Gulf of Oman against oil tankers… seem to be supplementary to the [US] economic sanctions as the Americans went nowhere with the sanctions, [also] especially given America’s historical record in the area [of false flag ops]”, Speaker of the Iranian Parliament Ali Larijani said over the weekend.

On 13 June, two oil tankers, the Panama-registered Kokuka Courageous, operated by Japan’s Kokuka Sangyo Co, and Marshall Islands-flagged Front Altair, owned by Norway’s Frontline, were hit by explosions in the Gulf of Oman, near the Strait of Hormuz.

Shortly after the incident, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo accused Tehran of orchestrating the attacks, with the US CENTCOM releasing a video claiming to show Iranian sailors removing an unexploded mine from the hull of one of the tankers as “proof” of Tehran being the culprit.

The footage has, however, been questioned by US allies and the Kokuka Courageous tanker’s operator, who said that it was not enough to prove Washington right.

Tensions have been simmering in the Gulf region since the US withdrew from the Iran nuclear deal in May 2018, but were exacerbated last month after the Pentagon deployed an aircraft carrier strike group and a bomber task force to the Middle East to send a “clear and unmistakable” message to Iran that any attack on American interests or those of its allies would be met with “unrelenting force”.

The depressing connection between air pollution and happiness

(Natural News) The air you breathe may affect your mood and happiness. A study published in the journal Nature Human Behaviour found that air pollution may be contributing to low levels of happiness among people living in major cities in China. Although China has an annual economic growth rate of eight percent, the level of…

Natural approaches for treating colds and the flu

(Natural News) Many people rely on pharmaceutical drugs to treat the flu and their colds, but there are natural medicines that can beat these illnesses. Elderberry. This berry can boost immunity and inhibit viruses from penetrating cells, preventing them from replicating. Elderberry is a great natural remedy for colds because it helps speed up the recovery period,…

Buried reports hide details of medical device failures

According to the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission,1 the medical device industry has developed and sold an enormous number of products they feel play a crucial role improving the ability to diagnose and treat illness. However, there are a relatively small number of large diversified companies supplying these devices specific for therapeutic use.

In a report to Congress, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission stated:2 “The industry is distinctive both for its tendencies to make frequent, incremental changes to its products and its extensive ties with physicians.”

While medical devices are regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the regulatory framework is less stringent than that used for pharmaceutical drugs. Many devices considered to be low risk may be marketed without prior approval and those considered medium risk are only required to demonstrate they are substantially equivalent to an existing device before being marketed.

Due to a rapidly expanding scientific and engineering knowledge base, there’s been an acceleration in the development of new devices. The FDA3 maintains information for manufacturers to determine if their product is a medical device, how to classify it, label it and report it. The FDA Medical Device Reporting (MDR) regulation mandates reporting device-related adverse events.4

On the surface it appears as if the FDA and other federal agencies are seeking to protect consumers from malfunctioning or poorly designed devices. However, an investigative report by Kaiser Health News (KHN)5 revealed a hidden program.

The Voluntary Malfunction Summary Reporting has allowed manufacturers to submit MDRs in summary form. The KHN6 investigation found these collections included 1.1 million reports since 2016.

MAUDE tracks public reports

Publicly, the Manufacturer and User Facility Device Experience Database (MAUDE)7 is where adverse events are reported for medical devices. The FDA also maintains MedWatch,8 an adverse event reporting program for the public where individuals may subscribe to safety alerts and learn of new reports made on human medical products or may report serious problems themselves.

Within the MAUDE system is an online search that allows the public to look through the database for information on medical devices that may have malfunctioned or caused a death or serious injury. According to the FDA, the database remains current through the end of the past month, and the they seek to include all reports.9

Before KHN revealed the existence of a hidden database kept by the FDA, The Associated Press reported spinal stimulators used to treat pain and other conditions caused more than 80,000 deaths from 2008 to 2018. While marketed as a panacea for a wide range of pain disorders, the stimulators accounted for the third highest number of medical device injury reports to the FDA.10

These devices became one of the fastest growing medical products as doctors and companies aggressively marketed them as a safe antidote to the opioid crisis. However, patient reports indicate they are responsible for shocks, burns or spinal cord nerve damage resulting in muscle weakness and paraplegia.

Of the 4,000 different types of medical devices tracked by the FDA, metal hip replacements and insulin pumps are the only two logging more injuries. Medical device manufacturers have insisted spinal cord stimulators are safe and 60,000 are implanted annually.

An investigative collaboration between the AP, NBC, the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists and 50 other media partners around the world, discovered more than 1.7 million injuries and nearly 83,000 deaths related to spinal cord stimulators.

In response to the investigative piece by the AP, the FDA released a statement saying it would take new action to create11 “a more robust medical device safety net for patients through better data. Unfortunately, the FDA cannot always know the full extent of the benefits and risks of a device before it reaches the market.”

This statement was made just months before information was released by KHN showing FDA has supported a program that hides reports on faulty medical devices, injuries and malfunctions, leaving doctors and medical forensics professionals unable to make informed decisions about treatment.

Hidden reports place patients at risk

The program was initiated 20 years ago. The FDA justified it saying the program was designed to allow for more efficient internal review of well-known risks.12 This special exemption allowed manufacturers to file reports of malfunctions into a database that remained hidden from doctors and the public view.

The repository of device-related injuries has expanded since its inception. At least 1.1 million incident reports have found their way into the internal alternative summary reporting archive instead of the widely scrutinized public database.

An FDA official who spoke with KHN13 said this program “is for issues that are well-known and well-documented with the FDA” and that it “has allowed the FDA to more efficiently review adverse events … without sacrificing quality” of the review or information received.

The simple goal two decades ago was to cut down on redundant paperwork. A former FDA official told KHN14 the program took shape after under-reporting triggered changes allowing criminal penalties against device companies. Once this happened, thousands of injury and malfunction reports came into the agency every month.

Some of these were so similar that Larry Kessler, a past FDA official, reported they were “mind-numbing” to review. As a solution, they proposed device makers could seek a “special exemption” to avoid reporting certain complications into a public database and would instead send a spreadsheet each quarter, six months or year, listing the injuries or malfunctions of their devices.

In this way, reviewers would look for problems or spikes in known issues while the public and physicians remained unaware of the vast number of injuries and malfunctions being reported every month.15

Buried data in FDA special exemption reports

KHN read over reams of records looking for references of reporting exemptions. In addition, the FDA also opened other pathways for manufacturers to report thousands of injuries and deaths listed in lawsuits. These exemptions were applied to products considered risky, such as pelvic mesh and devices implanted in the heart.16

A spokeswoman for the FDA confirmed these exemptions were created without public notification. Records from the FDA provided to KHN showed more than 480,000 injuries or malfunction reported in this program in 2017 alone. These alternative summary reports are not well-known, even within the industry.

For instance, Matthew Baretich, a biomedical engineer from Denver, Colorado, helps several area health systems analyze patient injuries and make equipment purchasing decisions. In order to do his job, he regularly scans public injury reports and when asked about these alternative summary reports he said,17 “I’ve got to tell you, that’s a new term to me.”

Bruce Barkalow, president of a biomedical engineering firm in Michigan, is who government officials and attorneys call when medical devices fail. In an interview with KHN18 he said he was not aware of the reports, and that the data would be meaningful to his forensic investigations. Former FDA commissioner Dr. Robert Califf, who held the post from 2015 to 2017, said he was unaware of the program.

Information blackout on 100 medical devices

All deaths are mandated to be reported in MAUDE, but hidden databases have included malfunction reports for nearly 100 medical devices, including those implanted in patients or used in surgeries. The FDA declined to give KHN a complete list of devices granted exemptions but confirmed exemptions have been used for intra-aortic balloon pumps, surgical staplers and mechanical ventilators.19

Recently, the FDA announced it will be terminating the alternative summary reporting program in an effort to increase transparency. It also revealed it would open past records to the public within weeks. Former FDA official Dr. S. Lori Brown called this:20

“… a victory for patients and consumers. The number one job of the FDA — it shouldn’t be “buyer beware” — is to have the information available to people so they can have information about the devices they’re going to put in their body.”

Federal records have also shown the agency allowed makers of breast implants to hide hundreds of thousands of injuries and malfunctions in alternative summary reports. Exemptions will end for implantable cardiac defibrillators, pacemakers and tooth implants.21 The FDA reportedly began to close the program as far back as mid-2017.

However, data provided to KHN22 shows that in the first nine months of 2018 the FDA accepted more than 190,000 injury reports and 45,000 malfunction reports in their hidden reporting program. In the upcoming release of data, the FDA will open summary reports filed before mid-2017. Going forward, device makers will be required to file individual reports for each patient harmed by medical devices.

However, the FDA also said it will not stop device makers from filing exemption reports withheld from the public when there is mass litigation over a device, nor has a plan been announced to open records that contain injury reports related to pelvic mesh and surgical robots.

As a comparison, KHN23 found 84 accounts of stapler related injury were filed with MAUDE in 2016 while 10,000 malfunction reports were sent to the in-house database.

The FDA had initiated a newer summary reporting program in which more than 5,500 types of devices are covered, allowing manufacturers to log device malfunctions. They announced these will be left in place, but manufacturers will not be allowed to report serious injuries in this program. However, the FDA has a spotty historical record of disclosing reports to advisers.24

Bad information devastates families

While it may be easier for those counting reports to forget, the millions of hidden accounts of medical device malfunctions and injuries have devastated families and destroyed countless lives.

After living for years in pain after a crushing injury, Jim Taft consented to using a spinal cord stimulator from Boston Scientific to cloak the pain and get off pain medication.25 The stimulator failed soon after it was surgically implanted, delivering electric shocks so strong he couldn’t sleep and at one point fell down a flight of stairs.

It was implanted in April 2014 by a neurosurgeon who received $181,000 from the company over five years as consulting fees and payment for travel and entertainment. By the time Taft had the spinal cord stimulator removed four years later, the damage sustained left him unable to walk more than a few steps. He’s now virtually paralyzed.26

A lawsuit brought by the family of Mark Levering, 62, alleges he nearly lost his life during surgery. Hospital staff performed CPR for 22 minutes while surgeons sutured a severed vein caused by a stapler malfunction. He was in a medically-induced coma and underwent several more surgeries to repair the damage.

After awakening from the coma, he was unable to walk and cannot consistently recognize his wife or son due to the lack of oxygen to his brain and the subsequent brain injury.27

In 2013, April Strange had surgery to remove a benign liver growth. When the stapler malfunctioned, she bled to death, leaving behind a husband and two daughters, then ages 6 and 8. After surgery, the stapler was thrown out, leaving Strange’s husband unable to prove it had a defect. While stapler-maker Covidien denies allegations their product has a defect, they reached an agreement to settle with the family.28

FDA collaborates with manufacturers and CDC with states

Federal agencies charged with protecting public health interests appear to take actions leaning toward protecting big business instead. As the FDA begins revealing the number of under reported injuries and malfunctions in surgical equipment and medical devices, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is hiding information about deadly infections in hospitals.

Although the CDC is vigilant in their surveillance of hospitals out of the country, The New York Times29 exposed a culture of secrecy within the U.S. that affects health care. One recent infection affecting hospitals has been Candida auris, which the CDC calls30 “an emerging fungus that presents a serious global health threat.”

The fungus is often multidrug-resistant, difficult to identify using standard lab methods and causes outbreaks in multiple health care settings. However, the CDC and states appear to be collaborating to hide outbreaks as a way to avoid frightening patients.

Knowledge of an outbreak is important when you’re making decisions about nonurgent matters, such as elective surgery. The New York Times31 reports hospitals hide the outbreaks even when disclosure could have saved lives.

Take steps to protect your health

The best way to avoid the potential for medical device malfunction or uncontrolled infection is to protect your health. While there are times when you may need to seek immediate medical attention for accidents and injuries, I believe your best course of action is to maintain optimal health using strategies I’ve discussed in past articles.

Begin by getting eight hours of quality sleep, maintaining a healthy gut microbiome, eating a nutritionally balanced diet and getting plenty of exercise and movement each day. For guidelines and tips to help you, see the following articles:

The most dangerous ‘nonprofit’ harming your health

The International Life Sciences Institute (ILSI) is a nonprofit organization headquartered in Washington, D.C. Their mission, according to their website,1 is “to provide science that improves human health and well-being and safeguards the environment.”

The organization was founded by Alex Malaspina, a former senior vice president at Coca-Cola Co. and a regulatory affairs leader. While he founded ILSI in 1978, his ties with Coca-Cola were not severed. Coca-Cola awarded scientists the inaugural ILSI Malaspina International Scholars Travel Award in 2015 when Coca-Cola attended the 2015 ILSI annual meeting in Phoenix, Arizona.2

Malaspina continued to work with Coca-Cola as a vice president in Atlanta, Georgia, long after founding ILSI.3 He also served4 as coordinator for new products at the pharmaceutical company Pfizer Inc., and was president of the International Technical Caramel Association,5 a food industry trade group for users and producers of caramel colors.

While often referred to as Dr. Malaspina, he is not a medical doctor. Rather, he earned his doctorate in philosophy in 1955 and was conferred an honorary Ph.D. from the University of Salvador, Argentina.6 In 1994 he received the International Award from the Institute of Food Technologists. The goals of the ILSI are reportedly to bring:7

“… together scientists from government, academia and industry to uphold the scientific integrity and objectivity of nutrition and food safety science so that the resulting data and its applications are used ethically to improve food systems for the betterment of public health.”

However, Malaspina has been an influential figure in the food industry, driving an epidemic of obesity8 and Type 2 diabetes9 through unique and strategic devices.10

Study exposes ILSI as shill for multinational food industry

A new study11 based on the organization’s internal documents shows ILSI embedded itself in public health panels across Europe and the United Nations in an effort to promote its own industry-focused agenda to raise profits at the expense of public health worldwide.

Sarah Steele, Ph.D., from the department of politics and international studies at the University of Cambridge, led the research published in Globalization and Health. Information in the study is based on documents U.S. Right to Know (USRTK) obtained through state Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests.12

USRTK is a nonprofit investigative research group focused on investigating the food industry. Simon Barquera, Ph.D., a consultant for the World Health Organization,13 tweeted following the release of the study:14 “Today is #blackmonday for #ILSI an organization that has blocked public health nutrition efforts in Mexico & other countries.”

The study found some of the top officials at ILSI were asked to sit on international panels discussing the negative impacts of tobacco, chemicals and sugary foods on individuals, where they used their position to push for more lenient regulations on products that have mountains of scientific evidence proving the impact on health. Lead author Sarah Steele told The Guardian:15

“Our findings add to the evidence that this nonprofit organisation has been used by its corporate backers for years to counter public health policies. ILSI should be regarded as an industry group — a private body — and regulated as such, not as a body acting for the greater good.”

Steele and her colleagues read through more than 170,000 pages of emails from 2015 to 2018, finding ILSI received funds from food companies, including Nestle, General Mills, Monsanto and Coca-Cola.16

While the organization publicly denies any involvement in public policy solutions or commercial interests,17 the study uncovered emails from founder Malaspina to executives at Coca-Cola in which he characterized new sugar intake guidelines as a “disaster” for Coke. Emails were uncovered suggesting ILSI protects industry interests, including this one, sent to Suzanne Harris18 at ILSI:19

“Dear Friends, These guidelines are a real disaster! They could eventually affect us significantly in many ways; Soft drink taxations, modified school luncheon programs, a strong educational effort to educate children and adults to significanty limit their sugar intake, curtail advertising of sugary foods and beverages and eventually a great pressure from CDC and other Agencies to force industry to start deducing drastically the sugar we add to processed foods and beverages.

Also we have to expect that many nations will follow the US guidelines. We have to consider how to become ready to mount a strong defence. Warm regards. Alex”

Nonprofit campaigns against public health policy

ILSI has affiliated chapters around the world20 and, in what may seem to be a juxtaposition of ideas, just completed participation in the 6th World Conference on Research Integrity in Hong Kong, China.21 According to the ILSI website:22

“Scientific integrity is fundamental to the mission and work of the International Life Sciences Institute (ILSI). Specifically, ILSI North America and its partners throughout the scientific community have been leaders in defining principles, guidelines, and best practices for establishing and maintaining the Integrity of the scientific process when diverse stakeholders collaborate — now ILSI and it’s 16 entities are building on this work.”

According to documentation, ILSI partners include large food industry giants and agribusinesses intent on promoting the use of chemicals in agriculture and manufacturing. In fact, the study authors wrote the nonprofit is a lobby group promoting the interests of agrichemical industries counter to healthy public policies.23 Co-author Gary Ruskin, co-director of USRTK commented:24

“ILSI is Big Food’s global stealth network to defeat scientists, regulators and others who point out the health risks of their products. Big Food wants you to believe that ILSI works for your health, but really it defends food industry profits.”

Trustees on the board of ILSI have included representatives from Kellogg’s, General Mills, Nestle and Pepsico,25 while Kristin DiNicolantonio, ILSI global communication director, told The Guardian26 they did so “in an individual capacity.”

In 2019, some of ILSI’s industry board members include representatives from Cargill, Pepsico, Coca-Cola, DuPont, General Mills, ConAgra, Abbott Nutrition and Campbell Soup Co. Even the USDA and CDC are included as “liaisons” to the board.27 In Europe, employees from General Mills, DuPont and Nestle sit on the board.28

The World Health Organization (WHO) was involved in 2016 after ILSI vice president Alan Boobis chaired the meeting to establish public policy on glyphosate. ILSI had taken more than $1 million in donations from Monsanto. WHO cut formal ties with ILSI in 2017.29

In an interesting turnabout, Mars Co. quit ILSI in 2018 and issued a statement explaining:30 “We do not want to be involved in advocacy led studies that so often, and mostly for the right reasons, have been criticized.”

ILSI disavows founder while maintaining ties with Coca-Cola

Three days after the featured study was released, ILSI31 published a response in which they said Steele’s conclusions about its lobbying policies are incorrect. They reiterated the organization explicitly prohibits members from advocating commercial interests and informs on actions by industry rather than developing policy.

In the statement,32 ILSI was explicit Malaspina was no longer an ILSI trustee, officer or representative of the organization of any kind and has no position within the organization. Any comments he may have made after 2001 should be seen as a retired private citizen.

They encouraged anyone reading the study to discount emails from Malaspina in which he was in contact with ILSI members. However, while this deep dive into documents from the self-proclaimed industry watchdog establishes its involvement in policy and decision making on a global scale, it is not the first time dirt has been found when ISLI has come under the microscope.33

Earlier this year, papers published in the BMJ34 and the Journal of Public Health Policy35 revealed the powerful influence the ILSI held over the Chinese government policymaking related to obesity.

The nonprofit organization is funded by corporate membership and supporters. In 2015 they thanked a three-page list of worldwide corporate supporters,36 including McDonald’s, Monsanto, Pfizer and Red Bull. Currently, its website lists industry members37 such as the Coca-Cola Co., ConAgra, General Mills, PepsiCo and DuPont.

ILSI worked to discredit scientist

ILSI supports the use of glyphosate, sugar and numerous other chemicals in the manufacturing of food, and takes great offense to scientists who dare to identify flaws in their conclusions. Dr. Tim Noakes is one who reviewed a meta-analysis called the Naudé Review.38

The review was published in 2014, in which the researchers claimed data showed low-carb diets are no more effective for weight loss than low-fat diets. Noakes and public health researcher Zoe Harcombe reviewed the publication, finding multiple flaws and saying the conclusions were not robust.39

In South Africa, Noakes is nationally famous as exercise scientist and physician transforming sport by challenging some of the most commonly held beliefs. In the past, he has addressed hydration, motivation and fatigue, but apparently bit off too large a bite when he took on carbs, big soda and sugar.40

In February 2014 he tweeted41 that babies should be weaned onto low-carbohydrate diets. Suddenly the floodgates opened, and he was pressed to defend his statement, even though he no longer practiced medicine. A colleague, Russ Greene from CrossFit Inc., flew to South Africa to speak to Noakes and read 300 pages of trial documents.

Court trial to defend low-carb statement

Greene writes the trial42 “sets a frightening precedent,” as anyone who dares to tweet something out of sync with the food industry’s proxy organizations may face the full force and deep pockets of the junk food industry. Although one dietitian was the face of the opposition, she was not the leader, nor were dietitians leading the charge. In fact, the dietitian most verbal is also a consultant for Kellogg’s.43

She erased most of the online documentation of her relationship with Kellogg’s following the start of the trial.44 During the 2014 Nutrition Congress, ILSI contributed to the program and three officials from South Africa’s Department of Health spoke at the ILSI session. Noakes was initially acquitted, but the Health Professionals Council of South Africa filed an appeal.

He was again acquitted in mid-2018, being found not guilty of giving nutritional advice online, during which he demonstrated a low-carb diet was scientifically correct and could cause no harm. While the trial may seem frivolous to some, Greene calls it45 “just good business” for Coca-Cola and its proxies.

A whole food diet plan reduces health risks

If you want your body to perform optimally, you need real food and all-natural nutrients, which is common sense advice for everyone. A real food diet is a foundational pillar for optimizing your health and your gut microbiome. Choosing organic, whole foods grown without synthetic pesticides and fertilizers is key to avoiding toxins, and just as important as getting a wide variety of nutrients.

Organic fruits and vegetables may contain 19% to 69% more antioxidants than those conventionally-grown.46 Many of these have been linked to a reduced risk of chronic diseases, including cardiovascular disease and neurodegenerative disorders.

On the other hand, eating ultraprocessed foods places you at greater risk for disease, including metabolic syndrome,47 cardiovascular disease48 and diabetes.49 Research has also linked ultraprocessed foods to cancer50 and premature death. Unfortunately, eating processed foods has become the norm worldwide.

For a discussion on the dangers of processed foods see my previous article, “Processed foods lead to cancer and early death.” Making changes to your nutrition may improve your health and help you more easily control your weight. For tips on eating more real food, see my previous article, “For optimal health and weight, eat real food.”

Nanoparticle additives in your food

Processed food is the antithesis of a healthy diet for a number of different reasons, the addition of unregulated and often undisclosed chemicals being a significant one. Besides preservatives, emulsifiers, colors and flavors, which are generally listed, there are any number of others that do not have to be disclosed, as they’re considered “processing aids.”

Additives are used in food processing to slow spoilage, prevent fats and oils from going rancid, prevent browning, and fortify or enrich the food with synthetic vitamins and minerals to replace the natural ones that were lost during processing.

They’re also added to improve taste, texture and appearance, as many processed foods would be as dull and bland as cardboard without some artificial help. But despite widespread use, many food additives have questionable safety profiles, or none at all, since only a small percentage have ever been properly tested.

One such in the U.S.’s largely unregulated, group of food additives are nanoparticles, which are rapidly gaining favor in the food industry. Tests by the Adolphe Merkle Institute of the University of Fribourg and the Federal Food Safety and Veterinary Office in Switzerland found nanosized titanium dioxide, silicon oxide and talc in 27% of the food products tested.1

This suite of ingredients, engineered to almost atomic scale, may have unintended effects on cells and organs,2 particularly the digestive tract.3

There are also indications that nanoparticles may get into the bloodstream4 and accumulate5 elsewhere in the body. They have been linked to inflammation,6 liver and kidney damage7 and even heart8 and brain damage,9 The Guardian reports in a recent article.10

Nanoparticles — A hidden health hazard in processed food?

Nanoparticles have gained popularity in the food industry for their ability to “improve” the texture, appearance and flavor of food. Silicon dioxide, for example, is added to many spices and salts as an anticaking agent, meaning it allows the spices to flow easier and not clump together.

Titanium dioxide (labeled E171 in the EU), is a whitening agent used in a wide variety of products, from chocolate and chewing gum to baked goods, milk powders and mayonnaise. However, while titanium dioxide has long been considered inert, concerns about nanosized titanium dioxide have been raised for years.11

According to The Guardian,12 “the tiny metal additive has … been shown to accumulate in liver, spleen, kidney and lung tissues in rats when ingested and to damage the liver and heart muscle.”

Christine Ogilvie Hendren, executive director of the Center for the Environmental Implications of NanoTechnology at Duke University, told The Guardian that she washes “all my foods like crazy,”13 in an effort to remove surface nanoparticles.

Christine K. Payne, associate professor of mechanical engineering and materials science, Duke University, added “There might be concerns for toddlers when you have a small body mass that you’re eating a lot of these … products.”14

France bans nanosized titanium dioxide

Due to mounting safety concerns, France recently banned nanosized titanium dioxide in food, effective 2020. According to Reuters,15 “the country’s health and safety agency said there was not enough evidence to guarantee the safety of the substance.”

According to Payne, her studies (which are focused on the inhalation of nanomaterials) have revealed “lots of unexpected molecular and genetic effects” even at levels up to 100 times below those deemed safe by conventional toxicology tests. Payne told The Guardian:16

“What all labs [doing such research] are seeing now is that there are effects beyond toxicity, so you can work at non-toxic concentrations but still see, for example, an oxidative stress response which can lead to inflammation.”

In his safety review17 “Is Nano Safe in Foods?” published November 2017, David Julian McClements from the University of Massachusetts discusses nanoparticles’ effect on the human gastrointestinal tract, as well as some of the potential toxicity mechanisms of various food-grade nanoparticles, concluding “there is evidence that some of them could have harmful effects.”

Not all nanoparticles are added directly to the food itself. They’re also used in packaging, and may migrate onto the food. According to McClements,18 these nanoparticles may also pose health hazards. Nanosized silver, for example, commonly used as an antimicrobial agent in food packaging, may kill beneficial gut bacteria and alter your gut microbiome if ingested.

Nanosized titanium dioxide linked to gut inflammation

Research19,20 published in May 2019, found nanoparticle-sized titanium dioxide administered in drinking water impacted the gut microbiota in mice in a way that might trigger inflammatory bowel diseases and/or colorectal cancer. As explained by the authors:21

“While TiO2 [nanosized titanium dioxide] had minimal impact on the composition of the microbiota in the small intestine and colon, we found that TiO2 treatment could alter the release of bacterial metabolites in vivo and affect the spatial distribution of commensal bacteria in vitro by promoting biofilm formation.

We also found reduced expression of the colonic mucin 2 gene, a key component of the intestinal mucus layer, and increased expression of the beta defensin gene, indicating that TiO2 significantly impacts gut homeostasis.

These changes were associated with colonic inflammation, as shown by decreased crypt length, infiltration of CD8+ T cells, increased macrophages as well as increased expression of inflammatory cytokines.

These findings collectively show that TiO2 is not inert, but rather impairs gut homeostasis which may in turn prime the host for disease development.”

Associate professor Wojciech Chrzanowski, a nanotoxicology expert with the University of Sydney’s School of Pharmacy and Sydney Nano Institute, told Science Daily:22

“There is increasing evidence that continuous exposure to nanoparticles has an impact on gut microbiota composition, and since gut microbiota is a gate keeper of our health, any changes to its function have an influence on overall health.

This study presents pivotal evidence that consumption of food containing food additive E171 (titanium dioxide) affects gut microbiota as well as inflammation in the gut, which could lead to diseases such as inflammatory bowel diseases and colorectal cancer.”

Nanosized titanium dioxide alters intestinal homeostasis

Another recent study23 published in the journal Environmental Science: Nano sought to determine whether nanosized titanium dioxide could affect the intestinal barrier function, the aim of which is to protect your body from external threats, if so, how.

To do that, the researchers co-cultured two types of colorectal cells to “reconstitute an in vitro mucus-secreting intestinal epithelium,” which was then exposed to three different agents: nanosized titanium dioxide, pure anatase (a mineral form of titanium dioxide), or an anatase and rutile mix (two mineral forms of titanium dioxide). As reported by the authors:24

“Two exposure scenarii were used: acute exposure for 6 h or 48 h after cell differentiation (21 days post-seeding), or repeated exposure during the course of cell differentiation, i.e., twice a week for 21 days post-seeding.

Epithelial cells repeatedly exposed to TiO2 developed an inflammatory profile, together with increased mucus secretion. Epithelial integrity was unaltered, but the content of ATP-binding cassette (ABC) family xenobiotic efflux pumps was modified.

Taken together, these data show that TiO2 moderately but significantly dysregulates several features that contribute to the protective function of the intestine.”

All nanoparticles bind to gut bacteria

According to a study25,26 published last year, all nanoparticles in food have the ability to bind to all types of gut bacteria, albeit to varying degrees, thereby altering the bacteria’s life cycle and activity inside your body.

While the authors suggest these characteristics may render nanoparticles usable in medicine — they could potentially be used to push the gut microbiome in a positive direction, for example — they may also cause problems. As noted in Medical News Today, which reported the team’s findings:27

Compared with bigger particles derived from the same materials, nanoparticles have a much larger surface area relative to their size … and are able to cross biological barriers. These barriers include the mucus layer that lines tissues such as the gut.

For these reasons, their fate in the human gut is likely to differ greatly from that of larger-scale counterparts derived from the same materials. According to the study authors, ‘It is, therefore, important to ensure that any nano-enabled food ingredients are safe for application in foods’ …

A potential outcome that could be of benefit is the inhibition of infections, for example by H. pylori. The team made this discovery when experimenting with silica nanoparticles in cell cultures.

However, a potentially disturbing prospect that came up in other experiments was that binding to nanoparticles could render some unfriendly bacteria less visible to the immune system. Such a result could increase inflammation responses, for instance.”

Safety testing lags behind identification of novel ingredients

As noted in a 2018 paper28 in the journal Nanotechnology Reviews, “There is an imbalance between the increase in research to identify new nanoparticle applications and their safety …”

The authors further point out that “It has been observed that people perceive nanotechnology risks similar to genetically modified food, thus reducing the consumption of such food,” and that while “there are numerous studies on the use of nanotechnology in food and the effect of nanoparticles on human health,” few analyses of the available evidence have been performed.

In an attempt to fill this void, the authors “present and analyze different studies on the use and the safety of nanoparticles in food.” This is a good paper to read through if you want a comprehensive overview of their use and potential toxicities.

Problematically, “After years of research, we have only come to the conclusion that materials at nanoscale show drastically different properties and unexpected behavior,” the authors state, adding that “This unexpected behavior is what leads to our concerns about its toxicity.” The fourth section, “Nanotoxicity,” reads in part:29

“Nanoparticles have the unique property of increased surface area per unit volume. This renders them to behave completely different from their bulk counterparts … [N]anoparticles are more likely to react with various biological entities such as lipids and proteins or cells as a whole. Nanoparticles may cross the cell membrane entering various organs and activate inflammatory or other immune responses.

To foresee the unknown consequences of nanoparticle usage, nanotoxicological studies are performed. A typical toxicity test involves cells or organisms subjected to a specific dose of chemicals (nanoparticles, in the case of nanotoxicological studies) and measuring the response of the cells over a period of time.

The dose-response relationship from these experiments determines the optimum dose and acceptable limits for chemicals. However, unlike conventional chemicals … nanoparticles … have shapes, surface area, and surface electrical charge completely different from bulk counterparts. These might diffuse, aggregate, sediment, and change the physical and chemical properties of the media they are kept in.

The major inference that we draw is that the conventional in vitro assays may misinterpret the results and the dose-response regimes. These conventional assays do not take into account the anomalous behavior of nanoparticles in the environment and their cellular uptake.”

According to the authors, several factors can affect the toxicity of nanoparticles, including dosage, chemical reactivity, charge distribution, size and shape of the particle, and the particle’s surface area. Other influencing factors include the fact that “the interaction between the nanoparticle and the biological membrane can be either physical or chemical.”

Physical interactions between a nanoparticle and a biological membrane typically trigger “disruption of membranes and its activity, protein folding, aggregation and various transport processes,” while chemical interactions primarily result in “reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation and oxidative damage.”

Multiple exposure routes further complicate the picture when trying to identify health risks. Similarly, the route a nanoparticle uses to enter any given cell can also influence its toxic potential to the cell, as different entry routes generate greater or lesser stress.30

“The fact that their particles can distort lipid organization and overall membrane structure is an evidence in itself that the nanoparticles may affect biology as a whole,” the authors note, adding “There is an urgent need for information to better understand the nanoparticle-biological interactions and processes.”

FDA does not regulate nanoparticles in food

While the EU has required engineered nano ingredients to be clearly indicated on the food label, no such rules exist in the U.S. When asked for a comment, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration told The Guardian31 “there are no specific provisions in the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act that deal with nanomaterials in food.”

Many do not realize that food additives are not automatically required to get premarket approval by the FDA,32,33,34 or that items that fall under the “generally recognized as safe” (GRAS) designation are exempt from the approval process altogether.

The problem with the GRAS program is that a company can simply hire an industry insider to evaluate the chemical, and if that individual determines that the chemical meets federal safety standards, it can be deemed GRAS without any involvement from the FDA. No independent third party objective evaluation is required.35 As a result, we now have many so-called GRAS chemicals in our food supply that have never existed in the food supply before.

Used in combination, food additive hazards are amplified

Adding further complexity to an already complicated picture is research showing that when you consume multiple food additives in combination, the health effects may be more serious than previously imagined.

In 2015, Denmark’s “largest research project on chemical cocktail effects in food,”36 led by the National Food Institute, concluded that even small amounts of chemicals can amplify each other’s adverse effects when combined. As reported by the Institute:

“A recently completed, four-year research project on cocktail effects in foods … has established that when two or more chemicals appear together, they often have an additive effect.

This means that cocktail effects can be predicted based on information from single chemicals, but also that small amounts of chemicals when present together can have significant negative effects.

‘Our research shows that indeed, little strokes fell great oaks also when it comes to chemical exposure. Going forward this insight has a profound impact on the way we should assess the risk posed by chemicals we are exposed to through the foods we eat,’ Professor Anne Marie Vinggaard from the National Food Institute says.”

While this research did not address nanosized additives, it stands to reason that since nanoparticles tend to be more reactive and unpredictable than their bulkier conventional counterparts, when combined with other additives — nanosized or not — the risk of toxicity may be significantly magnified.

Avoid processed foods to sidestep many potential hazards

The food industry has dramatically altered our diet, and these changes directly affect your weight and overall health. A large part of the problem stems from the processes used to manufacture the food, as food processing destroys valuable nutrients.

It also removes much of the food’s original flavor, and to address these shortcomings, synthetic nutrients, flavors, colors and other additives are used. Many of these added chemicals can wreak metabolic havoc, as your body doesn’t quite know what to do with them.

Another factor that makes processed foods the antithesis of a healthy diet is the excessive use of refined sugar and processed fructose. Virtually all processed foods contain added sugar — including commercial infant formula and baby food. Most processed foods are also loaded with genetically engineered ingredients and/or glyphosate, the most widely used herbicide in the history of agriculture.

If you’re concerned about your health, buying a good cook book and cooking from scratch using whole, organic ingredients is one of the best investments you could possibly make. For a step-by-step guide to making wiser food choices for yourself and your family, please refer to my free optimized nutrition plan.

Remember, a processed food diet sets the stage for obesity and any number of chronic health issues. In fact, many of the top diseases plaguing the United States are diet-related, including heart disease, diabetes and cancer. The answer to these health problems lies not in a pill, but, primarily, in what you eat every day.