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28/01/2009

Alert ! Mercury found in fructose Corn syrup !

(NaturalNews) New research published in Environmental Health and conducted in part by a scientist at the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy has revealed that high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is contaminated with the toxic heavy metal mercury.

That means that many of the products using HFCS may also be contaminated with mercury. Carbonated sodas are sweetened with HFCS, as are candy bars, bread, salad dressings, pizza sauce, fruit drinks and thousands of other grocery items.

Mercury is so highly toxic that it causes severe neurological disorders. It can also result in the loss of hair, teeth and nails as well as muscle weakness, loss of kidney function, emotional mood swings and memory impairment. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mercur...) (P.S. Somebody please update this Wikipedia page with this latest research about HFCS being a source for mercury exposure, too.)

The highest level of contamination found in the study (http://www.ehjournal.net/content/8/1/2) was 0.57 micrograms of mercury per gram of HFCS. The EPA says that an average-sized woman should consume no more than 5.5 micrograms per day of mercury, meaning that the average American consumer may be eating five times the upper safety limit of mercury every day due to high-fructose corn syrup consumption if they consume the foods tested in the study.

That's because the average American consumes 12 teaspoons of HFCS every day! So just by eating the standard American diet of processed foods, consumers are right now potentially exposing themselves to exceedingly high levels of mercury that far surpass the safety limits set by the EPA.

Buy groceries, get free mercury !

High-fructose corn syrup is used in almost everything, it seems. A second study conducted by David Wallinga, M.D., entitled "Not So Sweet: Missing Mercury and High Fructose Corn Syrup" (http://healthobservatory.org/librar...) reveals that nearly one-third of all grocery items sweetened with HFCS were contaminated with mercury.

Eating some sweetened yogurt? Mercury!

How about some salad dressing with HFCS? Mercury!

Want some ketchup on that burger? Mercury!

In fact, mercury is found in thousands of grocery products sold across the world right now. And it's no exaggeration to say that mainstream consumers of popular food items are likely suffering from widespread mercury poisoning (especially if you add in the mercury exposure they're getting from dental fillings).

Where does mercury come from?

Most people don't know how high-fructose corn syrup is really made. One of those processes is a bizarre chemical brew involving the creation of caustic soda by exposing raw materials to pools of electrified mercury in a large vat. Through this process, the caustic soda gets contaminated with mercury, and when corn kernels are exposed to this caustic soda to break them down, that contamination is passed through to the HFCS.

Another toxic chemical, glutaraldehyde, is also used in the production of HFCS. It's so toxic that consuming even a small amount of it can burn a hole in your stomach.

But don't worry: The Corn Refiners Association insists that HFCS is a "natural" ingredient, and their Chicago-based PR firm Weber Shandwick is now also claiming that HFCS has been declared "natural" by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. It hasn't really, of course, but that doesn't stop the press releases from claiming it has. (If you think a liquid sugar processed with glutaraldehyde and contaminated with mercury is "natural," then you've been duped. There's nothing natural about a processed food ingredient made with toxic chemicals.)

A Weber Shandwick representative calls me every time I post an article about HFCS, by the way, usually with demands that I remove the entire article. I've invited the Corn Refiners Association to a phone interview to defend their position that HFCS doesn't cause diabetes or obesity, and to answer questions about whether HFCS is really "natural." So far, they have declined to be interviewed. It seems they don't want to face real questions from an honest journalist who refuses to be censored by powerful corporations.

One thing I've got to say about the Corn Refiners Association is that they have a well-funded PR machine running around the internet trying to make everybody remove stories that say anything negative about HFCS.

I've noticed that the Corn Refiners Association is a master at spinning the truth. For example, the president of the CRA, Audrae Erickson, said this in a statement responding to the mercury findings: "Our industry has used mercury-free versions of the two reagents mentioned in the study, hydrochloric acid and caustic soda, for several years."

Well sure, that's true. But what is Erickson NOT saying? She's not saying that ALL the HFCS is made without mercury. She just says that somewhere in the industry, somebody is using a mercury-free version of the caustic soda. That doesn't mean all the HFCS is mercury free, yet if you don't read her statement carefully, you might be misled into thinking that. Her statement, in fact, leaves open the possibility that 99% of all HFCS might still be manufactured using mercury.

Note carefully that Erickson does not say all HFCS sold in the U.S. is free from mercury. Instead, she makes a clever statement that results in most readers assuming that's what she means. The CRA is well known for using this kind of language spin tactics.

NaturalNews challenges the CRA to state that all HFCS is free from mercury (see below).

The mercury fairy tale

The CRA isn't just in the business of pushing HFCS, by the way. It's also in the business of denial. For example: Virtually everyone who understands holistic nutrition agrees that HFCS promotes diabetes and obesity. But in much the same way that Big Tobacco executives once swore that "nicotine is not addictive," the Corn Refiners Association insists that high-fructose corn syrup does not promote diabetes or obesity.

So don't worry about the mercury in your HFCS. Or the other toxic chemicals used in the manufacturing process. That's all natural, we're supposed to believe. And high-fructose corn syrup is a healthy, wholesome, all-American sweetener grown without pesticides by poor Midwestern farmers who have given their lives and souls to create a sweeter, happier America.

Or at least that's the fairy tale version of the story. In reality, HFCS is created by corporate agriculture giants using toxic pesticides and herbicides on the crops who subject their corn to numerous toxic chemicals in the creation of this potentially mercury-contaminated processed sweetener that promotes tooth decay, obesity, diabetes and possibly even neurological disorders thanks to the mercury.

Yum. I can't wait to gobble down another chocolate candy bar sweetened with this stuff...

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