Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Mad As A Hatter:
Mercury Poisoning Found In Many Of
Our Foods Via High Fructose Corn Syrup

As I snuggled in my bed to take a well deserved afternoon nap, I could hear the child below my apartment screaming and the sound of furniture being tossed about. If I didn't know better, I'd swear someone was abusing the hell out of him. It continued for over ten minutes.

It's getting worse, I thought.

I walked to the living room where my children sat.

"Do y'all hear that?", I asked angrily. "What in the hell is really going on down there?"

My daughter replied, "I'm on chat now talking to Danica. He's having another one of his fits."

"I don't know," I said, "I've never heard it this bad."

"Come down there with me," she answered. "I guarantee you he's attacking his mother."

This was dilemma; on one hand, no one wants to meddle, on the other hand, if the kid was being severely abused, ignoring it could result in injuries.

I recalled my own son's temper tantrums at an early age that worsened at 13, when he got into alcohol, inhalents, drugs, later with gangs, and was literally crazy. The last house I lived in was a constant reminder of this: broken windows, holes in the walls... even the deck suffered from his taking a sledge hammer to it one day when no one was home and he was in a snit about something.

They both know me like a book and we have this painful, shared memory. Cassie ran out the door before I could say a word. She has a good relationship with the family because she plays there often with their daughter. I don't, because the mother speaks little English and the father's is only passable. Even though we only speak and smile in passing, they strike me as gentle people.

She returned five minutes later. "Yep", she said, "he's having a fit. Attacking his mom and throwing stuff around. He's as mad as a hatter."

Throughout all this, Xavier sat impassively and unconcerned. I looked at him quizzically. Mr. Might Makes Right gave a small frown.

"Kid bettah be glad I ain't his daddy. I'd crush his lil' azz."

I can't count the number of times he said years ago that he wished he had a father to put the brakes on his behavior. It was so extreme that whether or not it would have helped is questionable. Turning 20, being off drugs for two years, and finding good outlets for his energy has, but he still has a long way to go.

The thing is, the kid downstairs has a father, right there in the home and my daughter says he acts the same way with him. I've worked with too many other two-parent families where a solid, stable, involved father was present, yet the child still had major behavior problems which crossed the line into irrationality.


I thought about this the following day when I could hear this seven year old kid go off again. My mind wandered to the reasons scientists and sociologists have considered, from vaccinations that have toxic ingredients to too much time spent with video games.

Today I read this new report, US Researchers Find Traces Of Toxic Mercury In High Fructose Corn Syrup.

Damn. This stuff is EVERYWHERE. Corn syrup is a major ingredient in many of the foods we eat and has been widely used as a replacement for sugar.

A researcher in this article said, "We went and looked at supermarket samples where high fructose corn syrup was the first or second ingredient on the label... These 55 different foods included barbecue sauce, jam, yogurt and chocolate syrup. We found about one out of three had mercury above the detection limit."

Also stated was, "There is no established safe dose for elemental mercury, the type discovered in corn syrup. But the US Environmental Protection Agency says an average-sized woman should limit her exposure to 5.5 micrograms a day of methylmercury, the kind found in fish. If that same woman regularly ate corn syrup contaminated at the highest level detected in the study - 0.57 micrograms per gram - the researchers estimated that she could end up consuming an amount of mercury that is five times higher than the EPA's safe dose."

Word up, mothers, and ladies of child-bearing age...

Eating fish with high levels of mercury has been the major source of exposure for most people in the past century. It's also been in mascara, various medicines, and vaccinations for your kids.

From wikepedia: "Since the 1930s some vaccines have contained the preservative thiomersal, which is metabolized or degraded to ethyl mercury. Although it was widely speculated that this mercury-based preservative can cause or trigger autism in children, scientific studies showed no evidence supporting any such link."

Well, that ain't what I heard over the past ten years, and I checked that one wiki link. There are plenty of other links out there that say otherwise, just google those two words, mercury and autism, and see what you pull up. This June 2005 article, Deadly Immunity, is about an investigation by Robert Kennedy, Jr. and enough to make you angry.

And if you know much about autism, you know there's been an explosion of cases in the past twenty years, along with learning disabilities - both linked to mercury, and oddly in sync with the increase of high fructose corn syrup used in this country.

Hats off to Barack Obama, who "in response to a 2005 Chicago Tribune series about mercury hazards, introduced legislation that would force chlorine plants to phase out its use or shut down. One plant in Wisconsin later vowed to switch to a mercury-free process by this year, leaving four others - in Georgia, Ohio, Tennessee and West Virginia - that still use the older technology."

Speaking of hats, in the mid-18th to 19th century in Western countries, a chief source of mercury poisoning came from making certain types of hats. The solution used and the vapors were toxic. Correct or not, it was associated with driving the hat folks insane. Remember the Mad Hatter character in the story, Alice In Wonderland? That's where the author, Lewis Carroll, got it from.

So now we have the Corn Syrup folks having a fit over new research and are in denial mode. Has the fear of future lost profits made them as mad as hatters in wanting to keep doing business as usual, or are they correct and there's nothing to this new research report?

Who do you believe?

And do you become vigilant at the grocery store, and give up your favorite processed foods for the sake of you kids and maybe yourself?

I think of this, as I also think of how the underclass and working class populations consume more processed foods in the black community nearly any than other.

This evening I look at the photos of my son with a few of his hardcore homeboyz. Their eyes are cold and faces hard, from both profiling for the camera, but also from the insults to their minds and bodies while growing up, their learning disabilities, school failures, the loco lives they've lived, and often being unfairly targeted by cops when they weren't doing anything wrong, and I think of mercury and corn syrup, their addiction-like love for processed foods, and I wonder if it's a newly revealed enemy for our people...

Meanwhile the Asian child downstairs, who was born in this country and refuses to eat the food of his parent's native culture, continues to act as mad as hatter.


  1. Great post. And I'm with you that HFCS has been killing us slowly for years.

  2. Like Kellybelle said excellent post! I have been avoiding HFCS here for the past couple of years, when my girl has it she goes crazy.

  3. damn! all i could do was shake my head. i abolutely agree that high fructose corn syrup will be the death of our food. my brother too also had a "learning problem." my parents changed his diet immediately.

  4. Even more interesting is that lately the "Corn Growers Association of America" or some sh*t along those lines has been running ads on tv trying to convince ordinary folks that HFCS is nothing but harmless corn turned into sweet stuff we all can eat in our popsicles, cereal, whatever. Meanwhile its got the kids straight bouncing off the walls. Clearly the ad campaign alone, never mind the information that's out there about the dangers of this and other funky additives in our food, reveals that they must have something to hide for sure.

    This also reminds me of the movie Super Size Me, when the filmmaker went to a school where the diet had been radically changed from junk food to organic food, and students who were often diagnosed with learning disabilities and behavioral problems had done a 180-- growing noticeably calmer, more orderly, and more focused on their schoolwork. Again, we need to be mindful of what we are feeding our children and ourselves. Food security *is* national security, and not enough folks in positions of power are talking about this issue.

    Thanks for this and all the other brilliant & frank posts of yours. You really do make me think. Stay in the struggle...

    Soon we will not be able to eat anything that we don't grow ourselves. Thanks for the post!

  6. Another reason to buy locally and at all costs, avoid foods from China, Indonesia, Thailand, etc. Nobody is checking that stuff. I know those shrimp look good, taste good and are cheap, but don't do it.

  7. EXCELLENT post. I'm going to forward this to our school's principal. We laughingly call her the "HFCS Nazi" because she has been relentless in implementing a healthy snack/healthy food policy at my kid's elementary. My mom had hipped me to the stuff a little bit earlier, but between her and the principal I try very hard to avoid it. And it is EVERYTHING. It's scary.

  8. Well I know this: the UK has a ban on HFCS for a reason. That stuff is poison and if you want to believe their propaganda a small amount is ok, but when it's put in EVERYTHING that goes out the window.

  9. People look at me side eyed when I try to explain this to them.

    I told my cousin, "Girl, thanks for the home made jam. Did you use HFCS to make it?" "What! NO!" I said, "Okay, then why do you think it so strange for me to refuse to buy foods that have these ingredients in it?"

    She just continued to give me the side eye because I was being "weird." Folks is just hard headed and love to complain, but don't wanna change.

  10. This is why I shop at the food co-op instead of Wal-Mart. I have yet to find fructose in food I buy.

    When I we going to learn to buy locally and to check the label on food? When are we going to develop practical relations with local farmers so we can buy food and not needing fructose?

  11. HFCS is bad for mental and physical health, mercury or not. You can easily avoid them by not buying processed foods or shopping at natural food stores or co-ops for processed foods.

  12. I've seen those commercials by the Corn Refiners' Association trying to defute the information out there about HFCS.

    HFCS is very hard to avoid. It ought to be banned.

  13. I became a borderline nut several years ago about food additives. And based on what I learned, our food supply is killing us with a vengeance. Oh God. Please don't let me start naming additives and ranting here. LOL

    One of my neighbors was talking about "bad" kids. She calls them "oodles of noodles eatin' kids," because she recognizes that much of what's ailing them can be seen in their diets.

    Great post, Kit!

    Hawa, author of Fackin Truth Blog and Cleanse Master Remix

  14. I trips off of kids like that. My thinking would be to keep them terrified and if worse came to worse beat tha shit out of'em. I guess thats why I don't have any kids.

    Good Post, I like tha Blog.

  15. Wow! I've been utterly swamped this week, but thank you all for your comments and compliments. Bill Maher used to say all the time how corn syrup turned us into a nation of fatties and a graph showing our weight gain with the increased use of it matched perfectly.

    Many of you knew more about the other problems with than I did; it was only when I read about the news of mercury contamination that I had an oh shit moment. I had couple of those long ago when reading about it in canned tuna, and later my kid's vaccines.

    And to Boss Mack, well, fear often goes a long way when all else fails... but whatcha gonna do when get home and your crazy kid has burned down the house? Lol...

  16. The messed up thing is you will find HFCS in just about anything. I don't even buy jelly at the store, up here I can buy directly from small farmers who can and preserve. Only thing is a small jar is like $5 so on the one hand its almost cost prohibitive for po folks to avoid HFCS.

    This summer, I may try my hand at making jellies, we have a lot of pick your own farms (all berries) and I hear preserving is easy.

  17. Wow!

    Great post!!

    I totally believe that high-fructose corn syrup is bad for you and that agribusiness and the processed-foods industry would never admit it EVEN IF THEY KNEW their products were toxic.

    It's up to us as consumers to educate ourselves and make good decisions at the grocery store. I struggle with it too (it's easier to buy processed foods than to cook) but we have no other choice.

    Processed food is killing us.

  18. Sagacious, Yes! Thank you for asking! I'm sitting here having the butterflies about announcing something new and totally different. I really think you'll like it. Stay tuned... ;)

  19. This is an outstanding post. I am going to use it in one of my classes if you don't mind Trill. It was a real eye opener for me. Thank God we finally have a leader who might be disposed to do something about this.

  20. God must be made out of corn syrup, cause both are everywhere.

  21. While researching under "mad hatters" regarding an article that I am writing relating to mercury in vaccines and autism, I read your comments here. I am very concerned about your neighbor's son since he has behaviors that are so common in autism and mercury poisoned children, with the most likely suspect being the vaccines which introduce far larger amounts of mercury into the body, although the corn syrup is a serious issue for concern either way. Even small amounts of mercury are going to increase aggressive behaviors in children who are carrying a toxic overload of mercury and or aluminum which is also a serious issue now. (Example: my autistic grandson's heavy metal test shows 1,260 aluminum level with 100 being considered normal for an adult) We are using a natural chelation product made with "zeolite" which has been shown to safely remove heavy metals and other toxins.

    Your neighbor's son really should get a heavy metals test, but there is a big problem with the standard hair testing in that the metals are being stored especially in the brain and therefore not excreted into the hair. The urine test is tricky because a chelaton drug is used as a challenge to get the metals released so as to gain a measurement. In this process the newly released metals can create more damage, as in my grandson's case, he developed jaundice and liver damage. The same goes for standard drug chelation, damage issues compounded by high cost issues make the zeolite a safe and easily affordable alternative. I researched this subject extensively and in my opinion the "ZMP 400" distributed by Forever Green is the best due to the inclusion of marine phytoplankton which is rich in nutrients that support the detoxification process.

    I am NOT trying to "sell" anything here, but am very concerned about this little boy, also considering that 80% of children with autism are boys, there is a likely chance that he could be diagnosed on the autism spectrum or related ADD or ADHD. Otherwise his parents could simply try the zeolite with him and see if he improves. There are some amazing testimonials regarding parents who have successfully used this with their children online. You will also find some great information regarding zeolite in searching online under "Dr. Peter Prociuk, M. D. Autism".

    I certainly will assist these people with information via email if they have computer access, as I have accumulated many files due to thousands of hours of research in the last two years regarding vaccines and autism. Otherwise I could send you some information via email that you could print out for them to read, but I don't know how proficient they are in English.

    I realize by your comments that there is a language barrier, but I'm sure this little boy's parents are bewildered and beside themselves with grief over their child's unexplainable behaviors. So I am willing to help them find answers if you are.

  22. I don't wanna mess around, neither to disrespect nor offend anyone. I don't even want to refer to this matter, because, this is a deeply touching column. I don't want to anything but share my point of view, due to I feel noone understand me. It is time for us to change the way we live, I mean, the way we treat each other. Don't you think so? just try to think about what I wrote, because I am sure it hasn't been in vain. If my message reached at least one person, then its mission will be done. Moreover, if it weren't that way, I like to think so. I have no more stuff to share by this time. Hope you had liked it.


Hi, this is Kit.

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