By Sharon Sebastian
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), charged with the mandate to protect the public’s food supply, openly admits its liability in the deaths of Americans, mostly in the form of heart attacks. That is far from the full story. What the giant government agency hides is its culpability in the recent rise in brain diseases that continue to claim both memory and lives.
A broad alert from the FDA should read:
- Research links processed foods to a proliferation of deadly brain diseases such as dementia and Alzheimer’s.
- Studies reveal a food ingredient is connected to memory loss that impacts learning acuity in schoolchildren and lessened productivity in the workplace among adults.
The FDA concedes that under its watch it has allowed so-called “Frankenstein oils” to permeate Americans’ processed food supply. On public record, the FDA states that partially hydrogenated oils (and their derivatives, trans fats), have caused thousands of heart attacks and deaths annually. The FDA would like it to be old news, swept under the rug. What the FDA hopes to bury from public knowledge is that the “killer oils” have proven to be more deadly than disclosed.
The bad oils that have been fed to Americans for over five decades have now been linked to the increase in deadly brain diseases. In an official release, the FDA admits that the laboratory-engineered oils cause “memory loss” without telling the full story to the American public of a scientific link to long-term, physical damage to the brains of people of all ages. The FDA’s admittance of wrongdoing evades full disclosure. The agency remains conspicuously mute on the recent scientific link of the oils to the sudden increase of incurable brain diseases. An early symptom, of which, is memory loss.
Among the scientists interviewed in the newly released book, “AGING: WARNING – Navigating Life’s Medical, Mental & Financial Minefields,” Dr. Beatrice A. Golomb, a renowned researcher at the University of California, San Diego, provides insight:
- Are “partially hydrogenated oils” and their derivatives, trans fats, toxic?
- If “toxic” is defined by the ability to confer harm, then yes, overwhelmingly evidence indicates that trans fats/partially hydrogenated oils are “toxic”.
- These oils are notorious in scientific circles for being bad for the body; what is the mental impact?
- The brain has a few important functions. One is regulation of mood. One is regulation of behavior (e.g. to control irritability/aggression). One is regulation of cognition [ability to think]. Our data have found trans fat [partially hydrogenated oil] consumption to be adversely linked to each of the three.
- Does this loss of memory indicate loss of brain cells?
- Evidence shows that trans fats increase inflammation (brain inflammation is bad for memory) and increase oxidative stress, the kind of damage that antioxidants protect against – which is bad for memory – it can kill cells, and it can impair cell energy which can kill cells. But these effects can also impair function without killing cells.
- How does memory loss in young, working Americans, due to their consumption of these fats, [partially hydrogenated oils] impact their lives?
- That was not an aspect of our study. But certainly, less favorable memory function is expected to translate to less favorable performance in school and in the workplace. Less favorable performance can constrain career choices, affect job performance, and thus influence career trajectories.
- What is the value, if any, for using industrially-fabricated oils in our processed food supply?
- I used to tell my patients that trans fats improve the shelf life of the food, but reduce the shelf life of the person.
Of critical note is that the deadly oils will remain in the American processed food supply until mid-2018. An excerpt from the aforementioned book, provides further details on how these oils are linked to the build-up of a sticky and deadly protein scientifically known as beta-amyloids. Beta-amyloids wreak havoc as they flow through the cardiovascular system to the brain and eventually attack brain cells:
“A build-up in the brain and blood vessels of a protein plaque called beta-amyloids may be spurred or exacerbated by a build-up of bad cholesterol. Bad cholesterol is accelerated by – how does the FDA put it – by an ‘industrially produced’ food ingredient that the FDA allows to permeate the food supply. Converted in laboratories, they are known as partially hydrogenated oils or PHOs. When deadly beta-amyloids attack and disintegrate brain cells, ‘memory loss’ first occurs, then overtime, oxygen flow is diminished, limbs become incapacitated, bodily functions shutdown and eventually death occurs.”
It is the classic description of death due to most forms of dementia, including Alzheimer’s.
Though brain diseases have existed over time, the documented increase per capita in memory related disorders has sounded alarms. Research points the finger at the very ingredients that, for decades, have permeated processed foods: partially hydrogenated oils. These oils have long been banned in other nations from Europe to Asia. Yet, the FDA looked the other way as major processed food manufacturers glutted the American food supply with the “killer oils.”
An outcry by health advocates forced the FDA to announce a total ban of the oils effective as of June 18, 2018. Until mid-2018, buyer beware. The “phantom oils” remain in a vast array of processed foods as an active ingredient that is being fed daily to American families.
Though a staggering 1 in 3 seniors reportedly dies with dementia, the loss of mental capacity, whether dementia or Alzheimer’s, does not automatically occur with aging according to experts.
“Alzheimer’s [dementia] is not a normal part of aging.” — Alzheimer’s Association.
If not age, researchers queried, what is mentally derailing increasing numbers of people? It is jokingly said when a person’s body goes physically or mentally awry: “Was it something I ate?”
Diseases are caused by either genetics or the environment. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, family-inherited, early-onset Alzheimer’s Disease accounts for less than 5% of Alzheimer’s cases worldwide. Based on those extremely low statistics, researchers zeroed in on an environmental cause. In their sights are industrially-modified oils.
For almost twenty years, food activists voiced alarms that the laboratory-contrived oils remain stuck in arteries and veins far longer than oils from natural food sources. Under assault, the FDA has begrudgingly initiated a ban to slowly withdraw from processed foods the numerous forms of the oils that still saturate the marketplace. While not identified as the cause of Alzheimer’s, partially hydrogenated oils are linked to the acceleration of the build-up of the cell and nerve killing, sticky proteins — beta-amyloids — that turn into plaque and clog the brain. Beta-amyloids are the hallmarks of Alzheimer disease. Findings of top scientists are detailed in the book.
As a government agency, the FDA fails to “use reasonable care” on behalf of the American people. For decades, its inactions resulted in deaths and mental and bodily harm to millions. By law, the inactions by the FDA would be categorized as “depraved indifference” or “gross negligence.” At minimum, it is a “reckless disregard” for human life.
The damage imposed by the FDA proves costly, especially for middle-income families. An excerpt from the article “Epidemic of Dementia: Shadow Economic Crisis” explains: “The rapid increase in dementia and other brain diseases is occurring at a time when middle-income American’s discretionary spending is being tapped out. For growing numbers of families nationwide, long-term health care costs, both inside and outside of the home, are unsustainable.”
The FDA functions under outdated laws that give wide leeway to corporate food giants. Charged with overseeing the overseer, it is Congress that must act to plug the loopholes:
“Corporations that are supposed to be regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration may also be aided and abetted by the FDA as food corporations are allowed to ‘self-regulate’. The FDA allows major processed food manufacturers to designate their products as being ‘Generally Recognized As Safe.’ It is known by the acronym GRAS. Under the practice of GRAS, the FDA depends on the processed food industry to be its own overseer, its own inspector. Essentially, what that means is that the processed food industry is on the ‘honor system’. It is eerily akin to the tobacco industry when cigarettes were once promoted as being good for your health.”
In addition to PHOs that are consumed daily, the U.S. FDA allows other ingredients and toxins into the American food supply that are banned in other parts of the globe. Processed food manufacturers continue to pack the processed food supply with chemically manipulated ingredients that negatively impact young and old alike.
Taste biotechnology companies today have chemicals aimed at binding artificial flavors to taste bud “receptor cells” on the tongue. They are meant to ‘manipulate and trick’ the mind as substitutes or catalysts for heightened sugar, salt or other flavor sensations. With more patents in the pipeline, competition to stimulate your taste buds through both chemical and natural ingredient-alterations is expected to be fierce.
Will taste bud modifiers that reportedly “trick the mind” have a damaging impact on the developing systems of the very young and the fragile systems of aging Americans? Will the FDA do sufficient testing to determine if mind-altering chemicals will have a long-term, negative impact on consumers’ health regardless of age? If the past indicates the future, the FDA may again remain on the periphery as processed food companies continue to spoon-feed chemically-modified food and drink to unsuspecting consumers.
The charge against the FDA is malfeasance against the American public. As one major toxin is slow-walked out of the processed food supply, a stream of new, laboratory-engineered chemicals and toxins are set to permeate the marketplace. Why is the FDA loath to alert U.S. families that many of the chemicals and ingredients found in the food on their dinner tables, in children’s school menus, in fast foods, on grocery shelves, and in hospitals and nursing homes — are banned elsewhere around the world?”
Recent findings of the damaging impact of lab-modified partially hydrogenated oils come decades too late for the afflicted, dying, and loved ones lost to brain and heart diseases. Instead of a full explanation of the harm done and harm still to come, the FDA’s message remains: “Sorry about that memory loss and all of those heart attacks.” Having admitted guilt without consequence, it remains business as usual as the FDA continues to bow to corporations’ profits over citizens’ health. The determining question is — do Americans care?
Note: The 3-part series of articles on a Shadow Economic Crisis by Sharon Sebastian is presented after years of research and interviews with top professionals and scientists in various fields.
The Shame of Substandard Care: Shadow Economic Crisis – (Part 3) by Sharon Sebastian
Epidemic of Dementia: Shadow Economic Crisis (Part 1) by Sharon Sebastian
Scamming Alzheimer’s by Sharon Sebastian
Sharon Sebastian, author of the book, “AGING: WARNING– Navigating Life’s Medical, Mental & Financial Minefields,” is a columnist, commentator, and contributor in print and on nationwide broadcasts on topics ranging from healthcare, culture, religion, and politics to domestic and global policy. Sebastian’s political and cultural analyses are published nationally and internationally. Website: www.AgingWarning.com