Providing resources and ideas for therapies and medical developments for Parkinson's disease:
Modern society exposes us to harmful neurotoxins accounting for the pathology of 85% of Parkinson's patients with genetics accounting for the remaining 15%. Humans are exposed to pesticides, herbicides and preservatives from our food supply, endocrin disruptors from plastic packaging, toxic metals from rice, fish and drinking water, a multitude of pollutants from the air we breath and complex aromatics from detergents, shampoos and soaps. It's no wonder that the rate of Parkinson's disease has been growing since the dawn of the industrial age.
Fortunately enterprising entrepreneurs have found a market for "organic" and toxic free products as shown below. The organic certification can apply to food (livestock and plant based), beverages and textiles made with certified organic fibers. Note that there are a lot of misleading terms such as "natural", "authentic" and "antibiotic free" which do not qualify for the more strict USDA "organic" certification.
Our food supply has been assaulted by pesticides and herbicides as well as genetic modification. Meat producing animals are often fed antibiotics and food tainted with pesticides, herbicides and genetic modification. In the United States, food must meet the "organic" standards set by the National Organic Program (run by the USDA) in order to be labeled "certified organic". The Secretary of Agriculture establishes a national list of allowed and prohibited substances that cannot be used in organic production and handling operations. It gets a little more complicated when we consider the worldwide trade of food and the inspection and record-keeping required to maintain compliance. The international trade of organic goods falls under the various trade agreements with compliant nations.There are also various levels of compliance:
Organic produce is no longer the esoteric domain of stores like Whole Foods, but is now available in most grocery store chains. In order to allow use of the label "organic", the produce must be grown on a certified farm and processed in a certified facility and have the proper documentation. Farm certification includes soil and water tests (must be free of prohibited chemicals) as well as use of the proper seed sources (no GMO), approved non-synthetic fertilizer use, approved farm history, harvest methods and storage.References:
Grocery products derived from organic produce must be processed and stored in a compliant fashion. It is not allowable to add preservatives or artificial flavors to the product.
Traditionally organic goods are purchased to avoid pesticides and herbicides. One may believe that organic rice may also be a way to avoide elevated levels of arsenic, a known carcinogen which is known to be harmful to almost every organ in the human body. This would be a false notion. Many years ago textile mills and cotton farms flourished in the USA. The cotton farms were typically found in the southern states as the climate was ideal. Because cotton was not consumed for food, arsenic was used as a cheap and plentiful pesticide. When textile mills moved offshore from the USA, the farmed sources for cotton did too and the farmers changed to crops that would adapt well to the climate of the southern states. Many cotton farmers rotated crops from cotton to rice but rice had an affinity to take up arsenic from the soil that was a legacy from the days of growing cotton. This is why rice sourced from Texas has been found to have higher levels of arsenic than other states. Also rice sold as "organic" may not have arsenic levels any lower than conventional brands as the uptake of arsenic from the soil is a naturally occurring process and may be the same. Rice sourced in the USA typically has high levels of arsenic and brown rice typically has higher levels of arsenic that white rice (80% higher on average according to Consumer Reports). This is a good reason to also avoid products containing brown rice syrup. A Consumer Reports study showed that white basmati rice from India, Pakistan or California is much safer (1/2 the arsenic) than conventionally sourced US rice. The FDA reported that cooking rice in six to 10 parts water to 1 part rice followed by draining the excess water, lowers inorganic arsenic by 40% to 60%.Also see:
Breakfast lovers can rejoice as there are organic certified cereals.
Plant derived beverages can be certified USDA organic if the product and pedigree qualify. This is also true for alcoholic beverages. The addition of sulfites may qualify a wine to be downgraded to "made with organic grapes" but the product will fail the USDA "organic" certification.
Milk is generally produced by cows which begin lactating by pregnancy and are induced to continue lactating and produce high volumes of milk by feeding them female hormones. Unfortunately these same hormones end up in the milk itself and have feminizing effects on male consumers and can induce premature menstruation in young female consumers. Organic cows milk is produced without feeding the cows additional hormones (for either growth, reproduction or milk production) or antibiotics. Organic milk regulations also requires that the cows’ feed must be grown without chemical fertilizers, pesticides or genetically modified seeds. Organic, plant based milk like almond or coconut milk avoids these problem entirely.
Organic cow's milk also typically goes through a preservation process which heats the milk to 280 degrees Fahrenheit for 2 to 4 seconds compared to 161 degrees for conventional milk pasteurization. By utilizing the ultrahigh temperature (UHT) processing, the shelf life of organic milk is longer.
In the interest of reducing one's intake and absorption of harmful chemicals, one should consider the use of products free of artificial fragrances, dyes and hormone altering endocrine disruptors. While not under the regulatory scrutiny of the USDA (not food), many will source USDA certified organic ingredients. Sulfates are often included in traditional shampoos and detergents to form a frothy and soapy lather. Silicone is added to coat and protect the hair from the blow dryer. Phthalates are added to traditional conditioners, mousses and hairspray to make one's hair soft, but it is also a known endocrine disruptor and found to disrupt sexual development in male rats.Products:
Its hard to be toxic free when shopping for hair color but one can reduce the amount and strength of the toxins. Hair color products are notorious for causing allergies because of the concentration of harsh chemicals so one can reduce or avoid a burning itchy scalp by upgrading to a more chemically mild product.Products:
Some detergents are actually certified organic with organic compliant ingredients while others are simply free of dyes and fragrances. The Organics brand detergent is actually certified USDA organic and contains no chlorine, sulfates or petrochemicals. Sulfates are often included in detergents to form a frothy and soapy lather.
Suntan lotion is notorious for containing endocrine disruptors which put hormone levels out of balance and may affect male sexual development.
Toothpaste and oral hygiene products have a direct path into your body. Modern products often have artificial sweeteners, flavors, dyes, fragrances and even preservatives. Fluoride is a known neurotoxin and is commonly found in oral hygiene products. Even more controversial is the use of abrasive plastic microbeads in traditional toothpaste which are known to pass through stomach lining. Luckily microbeads were banned in the USA by the "Microbead-Free Waters Act" of 2015. The goal is to avoid harmful chemicals, needless chemicals and limit exposure to safe alternatives.Products:
The Environmental Working Group (EWG) runs an online database of toxins found in the drinking water based on US zip codes.
The database is formed from 32 million state water records from nearly 50,000 utilities.
Enter your US zip code on the EWG website.
Fluoride has also been found to be an endocrine disrupt (it alters normal endocrine function and response) and a neurotoxin, although there has been no direct link to Parkinson's disease.
YouTube video: Is Drinking Fluoride Safe?