Saturday, February 28, 2015

Celiac Disease & GMOs by Alyssa Montalbano 26 October 2014

Celiac Disease & GMOs #celiac #gmo

Celiac disease, what is it? Who has it? What’s the real story? According to Merriam-Webster’s Online dictionary it is “a chronic hereditary intestinal disorder in which an inability to absorb the gliadin portion of gluten results in the gliadin triggering an immune response that damages the intestinal mucosa” (“Celiac Disease Medical Definition”). The National Foundation for Celiac Awareness also says celiac is a genetics based disease where, “About 95% of people with Celiac disease have the HLA-DQ2 gene and most of the remaining 5% have the HLA-DQ8 gene (“Celiac Disease Who is at Risk”). When someone with celiac eats gluten proteins, commonly found in wheat and grains, their immune system responds by producing antibodies that attack and damage the small fingerlike villi on the small intestine walls. This is likely a molecular mimicry issue, as gluten proteins have a very similar structure to the amino acid sequence found in human tissues, such as the thyroid gland, in the small and large intestines. The immune system’s antibodies in a celiac, can’t distinguish between foreign proteins and self-proteins and thus proceeds to attack itself, contributing to major digestion and absorption issues like leaky gut syndrome.

Historically, thousands of years ago and pre-industrial revolution (around 1760), ancient grains and wheat had significantly lower gluten protein counts and were processed with much greater care ensuring better digestibility. However, even as early as about AD 250, Greek physician Artaeus of Cappodocia may have recorded some of the earliest celiac symptoms. His detailed records revealed his patients experiencing bowel and (digestive) abdominal problems. Artaeus didn’t link their problems directly with grain and wheat, but he did recognize it was a dietary problem and prescribed dietary changes. Over the years, as grain and wheat consumptions have increased in society, so have digestive problems (Auer). Even still, it has only been the last 20-30 years that there have been the massive influx of digestive disorders along with the increase in autoimmune diseases like celiac. It is estimated that 1 in 100 people worldwide have celiac disease and that two and one-half million Americans are undiagnosed (“What is Celiac”). These increases go hand-in-hand with the introduction, and subsequent massive flooding of the food supply with Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO)/Genetically Engineered (GE) seeds and crops, and the ever increasing use of intense and poisonous pesticides like Monsanto’s Bt toxin (insecticide) and Glyphosate (herbicide) infused Roundup spray.

Monsanto began Genetically Engineering (GE) at least as early as 1987, seeking and testing ways to take a gene from one thing and place it into another. In one of their many GE experiments, they found they could take a toxin-producing gene from the bacillus Thuringiensis (also called Bt toxin) and get it directly into the nuclei of a corn by first sticking it into a second bacteria called Agrobacterium. The Bt gene allowed the (now GM) corn to be tolerant (Roundup Ready) for being sprayed with Roundup and its herbicide ingredient of glyphosate. Roundup kills weeds through bacteria pathways called shikimate pathways. For this reason, Monsanto claimed Roundup safe for humans and animals because they don’t have the shikimate pathways. However, Monsanto seriously “failed” to note that animals and humans contain approximately 10 microbes of various bacteria for every 1 cell in their body! Every bacteria has shikimate pathways and every shikimate pathway responds to glyphosate. (Mercola)

Glyphosate, is a potent antibiotic patented to kill gut bacteria and once sprayed onto GE crops via Roundup, it can no longer be “washed off” as it has becomes systemic throughout the plant. This means, when someone eats a GMO/GE plant (like corn or soy) sprayed with Roundup, they are in fact eating roundup. The glyphosate once inside the body preferentially kills only the beneficial gut bacteria, thereby allowing pathogens to take over and increasing internal toxicity and stress on the immune system, which leads to more problems like leaky gut syndrome and allergies such as gluten intolerance and celiac. (Mercola)

Bt toxin is registered with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as being designed to kill bugs by poking holes in the cell walls (killing cells) along the bugs’ digestive tack and ultimately killing bugs by breaking open their stomachs. Leaky gut syndrome is a digestive problem where ‘holes’ have been ‘poked’ into the gut lining causing leakage of toxins and bacteria into the bloodstream. In a 2011 study performed by the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Sherbrooke Hospital Center in Quebec, Canada, they found BT Toxin in the blood stream of 93% of pregnant women and in 80% of their fetuses. This can only be possible if the BT Toxin is not in fact being flushed out of the system. In a separate study of Bt toxin, mice were given the Bt toxin (as found in soil bacteria) and begin reacting weeks later to the Bt toxin itself, and then becoming hyper-sensitive to other things that formerly didn’t bother them (qtd.Smith in Jeffrey Smith and Tom Malterres, MS, CN Discuss GMOs and Gluten). Many people with celiac or gluten sensitivity can later ‘suddenly develop’ allergic reaction to other things that may never have bothered them before, like egg yolks, which, “happen” to have similar properties to some Bt toxins produced by various GE corns.

GE corn has been found to contain 13ppm (parts per million) of glyphosate (non-GMO corn has zero ppm), which is 18 times the ‘safe’ level of glyphosate set by the EPA. Organ damage in animals happened at levels as low as .1ppm. Additionally, 19 studies of GMO corn and GMO soybeans, showed they disrupted livers and kidneys in test rats and mice. Today, approximately 90% of corn in the United States (U.S.) is GM corn and approximately 93% of U.S. soy is GM soy. As early as 2004, they found that GM soybeans transferred the inserted gene into the DNA of the gut bacteria of the human test group (Netherwood). Most people in America, knowingly or unknowingly, eat both GMO/GE corn and/or GMO/GE soy products on a very regular and daily basis. From going into restaurants and eating corn chips, to purchasing Tofu, or packaged corn syrup based candies, in addition to eating a plethora of other GE food crops (and their related packaged foods) like, wheat, canola, cotton, alfalfa (through animal pass-through products like milk and cheese), sweet potatoes, potatoes, golden rice, and carrots, to list a few.

While it is true that those with the HLA-DQ2 and HLA-DQ8, would probably still experience some celiac problems today from eating gluten in some wheat and grain; it’s likely the number of severe responses and hyper-immune incidences would be seriously diminished if Genetically Modified Organisms were not being put into and eaten via the food market today. These lower levels were seen in the eighteen and nineteen hundreds. Ingesting Bt toxin producing genes and foods laced with glyphosate poison from Roundup spray, places everyone’s immune systems into a state of perpetual chaos with some genetically pre-disposed people (celiacs) experiencing far more severe symptoms. It would be more accurate to say, celiacs have a strong genetic aversion to very intense weed and bug killing toxins that throw their immune system into a state of hyper sensitivity to more benign proteins, like gluten. These poor folk have been scammed into believing they have ‘developed’ a wheat protein (gluten) intolerance (celiac), but the real culprits are the transferable GMO genes, GMO crops, toxic sprays, and the people who knowingly use them.

Works Cited

Auer, Dr. “Understanding Gluten & The Effects Of Grain Based Diets – Part II.” Web. 18 Oct. 2014.
“Celiac Disease Medical Definition.” ©2014. Web. 18 Oct 2014.
“Celiac Disease Who is at Risk.” National Foundation for Celiac Awareness. NFCA. 2014. Web. 23 Oct. 2014.
Jeffrey Smith and Tom Malterres, MS, CN Discuss GMOs and Gluten. Whole Life Nutrition. 2012 Web. 18 Oct 2014.
Mercola, Dr. “Monsanto’s Roundup Herbicide May Be Most Important Factor in Development of Autism and Other Chronic Disease.” 9 June 2013 23 Oct 2014
Netherwood, Trudy, et al. “ Assessing the survival of transgenic plant DNA in the human gastrointestinal tract Nature Biotechnology” Nature Biotechnology 18 Jan. 2004. Web. 25 Oct. 2014
“What is Celiac.” Celiac Disease Foundation. CDF ©1990-2014. Web. 23 Oct 2014