Archive for the ‘news’ Category

Bisphenol A: Dental fillings, ADHD and the fall of the American Empire

Thursday, April 24th, 2008 The other place bisphenol A lurks: our teeth

BPA is a hormone disruptor that can mimic estrogen, and some research has linked it to health consequences, including early puberty in girls, breast and prostate cancer, and attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder.

(Emphasis, mine.)

So besides the increasing freakiness of all the unexpected places that this BPA stuff is showing up (Dental Fillings? really? Well at least it should only be a problem for people who are old enough to have been bingeing on HFCS for long enough to get cavities.) But what really caught my eye was the ADHD mention.

It’s often been noted that the US seems to have a higher rate of ADD/ADHD than other countries, and this has variously been linked to: the mindset on the imigrants who make up the population (restless/ADHD people are more likely to move, thus the population has “self selected” for ADHD like traits) ; the over medicalization of the US population mindset (ie everything can be fixed with a drug even if it didn’t used to be a problem); among various others. But this raises the prospect that it might juts be that Americans are more exposed to various endocrine disruptors and other chemical products that have a relatively short history of existence and use.

We learned, from Rome, that lead pipes, while useful will eventually poison you. I wonder what lessons the rest of the world will learn once the US finishes poisoning it’s population (I’m still holding out hope that it will be clear enough to learn anything from in the end, though that seems increasingly unlikely. And besides, we’ve never been very good at keeping the mess in our own back yard, so there may well be no one left to learn the lesson.)

PS: Brita pitchers and filters etc are made of Polystyrene, not polycarbonate, so they are and have always been BPA free.

Is Barack Obama a hawk or dove? – International Herald Tribune

Tuesday, March 18th, 2008

Is Barack Obama a hawk or dove? – International Herald Tribune

Just another article about the substance behind Obama’s words. / In depth / Rising cost of food

Friday, February 29th, 2008 / In depth / Rising cost of food

I’ve not yet had/taken the time to read this but I do find this kind of thing very interesting. Particularly in light of concerns over pesticides and low soil nutrient densities (which then product low nutrient foods, particularly important for trace minerals etc). Organic Farming is of course a solution to some extent but I heard somewhere (let me know if you can find it, I can’t at the moment) that if we switched all global farming to organic right now, we would need to (something like) more than double the land under cultivation to maintain current food supplies. Of course current food supplies are already a little low (witness poverty wherever you live and starvation in many developing countries).

Another story I want to read is The Next Green Revolution – The Economist

Edit: K so I read the Economist one. fine article. second half is better than the first. The first half annoys me because it implies, as is done all too often, that increased profits = increased social good. And I just can’t figure out the basis for that societal myth.