Our kids’ bodies contaminated with chemicals! (Part 8)

Updated 31 December 2014

Our kids’ bodies contaminated with chemicals! (Part 8)

In last week’s article, I discussed the effects of mercury toxicity on children’s health and brains. I pointed out to you where the heavy metal is found. Unfortunately, it is found in our food (fish), vaccines, certain pharmaceuticals, body care products, and more than you can guess. But, I also announced to you (I am sure some of you are already informed) the good news that the American Food and Drug Administration (FDA) finally asked the Pfizer subsidiary to stop adding the toxic inorganic arsenic (3-Nitro) to chicken feed that helps fatten commercial chicken while giving them less feed. I only hope that the company does not continue adding arsenic to the feed for export (outside the US).
Now, I will go back to the topic of today. It is about aspartame, the “universal” sugar substitute, which is “concealed” in off-the-shelf packaged foods and which is detrimental to health and brain by being a neurotoxin.
Aspartame is the calorie-free chemical sweetener that replaces sugar for people to cut on calorie intake. It is around 200 times sweeter in taste than sugar, yet much less calorie intense (suitable for weight loss dieting and diabetics?!). The chemical is found in most sugarless drinks and processed snacks and drinks (sodas, flavored water, ice-tea, ice-creams, yogurt, cereals, chocolates, candy, chewing gum, sugarless throat soothing pastilles, cough syrups…). It is used freely and without restriction now under the name of AminoSweet. The manufacturer, Monsanto, claims it to be harm-free, but I advise you to do your own research on the Internet to have more scientific evidence (independent researches). It is a neurotoxin (toxic to the brain), especially to little children and foetuses through mother’s intake. Moreover, it makes you crave sugar more, especially if you are trying to lose weight or diabetic.
The FDA initially banned it in the 1970s for its adverse effects, but with Reagan in office in the 1980s, Donald Rumsfeld (member of the board of Monsanto, the manufacturer), with his political influence, had the ban lifted without restriction. Rumsfeld still sits on the board of Monsanto, the drug company that produces aspartame, GMO products, Roundup (dangerous weed-killer), Tamiflu (vaccine for bird and swine flus) and more.
Aspartame (aspartic acid, methanol, phenylalanine) is a neurotoxin for both children and adults. It is a chemical that triggers brain tumors as well. Anxiety attacks, slurred speech, depression, migraines, autoimmune disorders, multiple sclerosis (MS), and other symptoms are linked to excessive aspartame consumption (mostly through abusing diet sodas). The hazard coming from sugar-free beverages is that they give you freedom to drink without restriction to the point of abuse.
Sugar-free (diet, zero) sodas become even more damaging to the brain, when the soda cans are exposed to heat in cars or under the sun. Young American military men and women developed strange mental conditions when they drank Diet Coke and Pepsi cans exposed to hours of midday sun during The Gulf War, Operation Desert Storm, in early 1991.
Aspartame is sometimes referred to on labels with E951 to have it concealed and make it difficult for the consumer to easily recognize it on packets and labels. Any product that has on its label “sugar-free” most probably contains a sugar substitute. Other sugar substitutes like saccharin and others are harmful as well. Watch for them. With so many comestibles containing aspartame, you lose count with how much you have consumed.
Safer low calorie sweeteners are stevia, coconut sugar, agave syrup and maybe xylitol. Even better, train yourself and children not to use sweeteners. Sugar is bad for the health, and aspartame is equally bad, but both are dangerous to the brain and health. (You have more information in my articles Say No to Aspartame, published in Arab News, April 13, 2011).
Many people believe that soda and soft drinks are harmless; thus parents allow their youngsters and even children to abuse them without restriction. Scientific evidence suggests otherwise. Highly sweetened (sugar, fructose, dextrose…) beverages could modify the brain proteins. Studies show that consuming them over a long period could cause hyperactivity in children through changing “the hundreds of proteins in the brain. This recent finding came after many others before, indicating that sodas have been linked to higher risk of “heart attacks, diabetes, weight gain, brittle bones, pancreatic cancer, muscle weakness, and paralysis.”
One Australian research was done on lab rat that were given sweetened water triggered hyperactivity in the rodents after the consumption of sugary water. Analyzed tissue from one section of their brains showed alterations in the proteins (300 proteins of them).
Simple sugar is also harmful. Once it is dumped into the body, the pancreas respond to it likewise by releasing high amounts of the hormone insulin to metabolize it. The process is done so efficiently and rapidly that the person becomes sugar and energy depleted, leading to increased craving to eat or drink more sugary stuff. This cycle continues until the person becomes obese and stricken with diabetes type 2, a devastating disorder that leads to cardiovascular disease, heart problems, strokes, and amputations.
The good news is that you can reverse early diabetic conditions by losing weight and quitting sodas, soft drinks, sugary foods, cakes, pastries, desserts, ice-creams, shakes, Frappucinos, snack bars (Mars, Bounty, Snickers…), fast and fried foods, chips, crackers, and most processed foods, which contain loads of sugar and fat.
According to researcher Jane Franklin of the Maquarie University of Sidney, consumption of sugary beverages have reached an “alarming increase” around the globe and “For many adults, these drinks represent substantial proportion of their daily caloric intake… [which] can cause long lasting changes to behavior and a profound change in the chemistry of the brain… as well as your waistline.” She also recommends drinking water instead and fresh juices and soft drinks should be consumed in moderation.
Coca-Cola president, Sandy Douglas, admitted that regular Coke contains “too many calories” (10 to 12 lumps of sugar in a can) by saying: “Sometimes I have a Coke Zero in the afternoon, but not a regular one because it has too many calories.”
It is not only about the excessive amount of sugar in soda and soft drinks; it is also about obesity that triggers diabetes type 2 and from then on cardiovascular disorders, hypertension, strokes, kidney failure, blindness, amputations and so on. How do all these disorders happen? Here is the story of five-year-old Kayla who managed to consume over four thousand Pepsi Colas during her short life, which according to her doctors, made her obese, which led to diabetes, amputation, and finally a heart-breaking death. The sad part is that sugar does not spare anyone, not even children. It is calorie-intense and nutrient-empty.
One Swedish scientific research suggested that the consumption of a single fizzy drink a day could increase the risk of prostate cancer by about 40 percent.
Soda and overly sweetened soft drinks should not be sold in schools. Parents should not keep them in their homes within reach of children. They should restrict the intake of such harmful beverages and keep a vigilant eye on their children’s diets and lifestyles. I have seen parents stop their children from ordering colas, yet they sip the soda in front of the child. They should set a good example for their children: NO SUGARS! NO FAST FOOD! NO SMOKING! NO ALCOHOL! NO DRUGS!
Next week, in Part 9 I will comment about energy drinks and I will continue discussing the dangers of sugar in more details with compelling scientific research, let alone that it leads to obesity and health complications.

• Chemical in Everyday Products and Children’s Health by Philip J. Landrigan, MD
• Planet in Peril by Anderson, Animal Planet’s Jeff Corwin, and Sanjay Gupta for CNN
• Interview with vaccine researcher (refused to be named) by Jon Rappoport (www.nomorefakenews.com)
• Autism Statistics – mindspec.org
• Why the manufactured food supply is designed to keep you addicted, not nourished by Mike Adams
• Four most dangerous toxins to the brain by Derek Henry
• Chicken feed contains cancer-causing arsenic: www.naturalcuresnotmedicine.com
• Meat Companies Go Antibiotics-Free as More Consumers Demand It, by David Kesmodel

Individuals with medical conditions or on medication should consult their physicians when they decide to introduce anything new in their diet even if it is natural.

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Lebanese luxury soap brand sees boost in sales amid pandemic

Updated 27 May 2020

Lebanese luxury soap brand sees boost in sales amid pandemic

DUBAI: In 1999, Syrian-Palestinian fragrance connoisseur Hana Debs Akkari pursued her passion project in Lebanon by founding a sophisticated soap company called “Senteurs d’Orient,” or “Fragrances of the East” in French.

Akkari envisioned that her handcrafted soaps would symbolize the beloved floral essences of the Middle East, particularly the Levant, which is reportedly the world’s oldest soap-making region.

With the pandemic caused by the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), Akkari’s small, family-run luxury soap business has witnessed an increased demand in their natural products nearly twenty years since its founding.

Portrait of Sarah Akkari, CEO of Senteurs d’Orient. (Supplied)

“Since the pandemic was declared, we saw a spike in our online sales,” said Lebanese-Canadian and New Yorked-based Sarah Akkari, Hana’s daughter and CEO of Senteurs d’Orient, to Arab News. “People are washing their hands more often, and their hands are becoming drier as a consequence. So, they’re also looking for a natural soap, such as the ones we offer. Our antibacterial soaps are packed with different nourishing ingredients like glycerin, Shea butter and Vitamin E.”

Operating from Lebanon, Senteurs d’Orient’s factory is run by a diligent team of chemists and artisans, many of whom are women as female education and empowerment in the workforce is at the heart of the company’s ethos.

Engraving soaps at the Lebanon factory. (Supplied)

After mixing the chemical-free ingredients by hand, the soaps are air-dried for 10 ten days and later machine-molded and carefully hand-wrapped. True to the company’s name, the delicate floral scents of gardenia, jasmine, tuberose, and rose of Damascus draw their inspiration from eastern gardens.

To show support for the selfless medical workers, some of whom reached out to Akkari and expressed interest in Senteurs d’Orient’s soaps, she recently donated nearly 500 packages to doctors and nurses from four American hospitals — two in Los Angeles, one in New York and another in New Jersey.

Each package is an ‘Oriental Trio Box’, containing three bars of soap, the shapes and engravings of which are inspired by the decoration of ‘maamoul’, the Levant region’s quintessential pastry.

“When you’re facing this type of crisis and you’re receiving emails from doctors and nurses or anyone on the frontlines, it’s a not a request you can reject,” explained the 32-year-old entrepreneur. “It’s something that we really wanted to be part of and it brought us much satisfaction knowing we could contribute in this way.”

The company has expanded its international presence and line of therapeutic products, creating bath salts, multi-purpose oils and thinly sliced, single-use soap leaves. (Supplied)

Under the leadership of Akkari, the company has expanded its international presence and line of therapeutic products, creating Mediterranean orange blossom bath salts, multi-purpose oils and thinly sliced, single-use soap leaves of amber and tea flower.

It is the authenticity of Senteurs d’Orient’s products that Akkari hopes will come through.

“You feel the fragrance is coming straight from the flower,” she said.