Today I want to focus on corn. Corn is not fit for consumption by anyone, especially your loved ones! Sadly, this is the kind of advice that will make your not-so-nutrition-oriented family members sigh and grumble. However, if you can find a way to reach them with this important message, please try!
The Kerrygold Kafuffle
Kerrygold is a butter known for being grass-fed and therefore much healthier than other butters. It proudly states on its wrapper:
“In Ireland, cows roam free in fresh air and graze in lush pastures of tender grass. From this benign environment and extraordinary diet come luscious milk so rich in beta-carotene, it can turn butter and cheese into a natural gold.”
This is enough to make just about anybody, even those who know nothing about the virtues of grass-fed meat/butter, start to drool. Well, it turns out that only about 90% of the feed for these lovely bright green cows of Ireland is made up of this delectable rejuvenating ground salad. The other 10% is a bit of a crapshoot for GMO feed, according to many reports and the company themselves. They not-so-proudly state on an FAQ forum:
“The balance, normally about 10%, of the cow’s diet is made up of grain and supplements. Our ongoing discussions with the grain and dairy industry have established that of this approximately 10% grain/supplements, approximately 20 to 25% may be from GM sources. This means that approximately 3% of a cow’s total typical annual diet may be from GM sources.”
So yes, I have been eating a lot (close to a whole bar of Kerrygold a day) of a potentially “bad food” for a while now. I guess that’s why people always say “everything in moderation,” hehe. Well, until recently it hadn’t been giving me any problems, honestly. I never gained weight, and honestly I never made any association between inflammation and the Kerrygold I’d been gorging on.
However, in the wintertime, usually our systems become more sensitive (hence why people get colds/flus so easily), and it’s a good time to reevaluate your diet/environment and look for things that are further stressing your immune system. Kerrygold got put under the microscope when I noticed I would wake up in the morning feeling great (from a restorative sleep), do my yoga outside, go inside, slice off a piece of ‘gold, down it, and immediately burp. For the next meal, as an experiment, I substituted tallow for butter and felt great, but a little hungry after the meal. Then I popped a tablespoon of Kerrygold, not convinced it was a problem for me yet, and then burped just like in the morning. Burping immediately after eating something (as long as it’s not just from swallowing air) is a good sign that it’s messing up your digestion in some way.
- The taste (which concerns me, because a lot of times things taste extra good when they’re toxic)
- The availability
- The taste
- The price
- Who cares? Mark Sisson says you shouldn’t care about GMOs in this case
This isn’t the first time Kerrygold has disappointed their fans. They have a lame product they put out, the “Naturally Softer” variety of their butter. I guess it’s lower fat or something. I’d just as soon buy a bar of Irish Spring. Okay, that’s maybe going too far. I actually thought it had vegetable oil till I reread that article. Still, it’s a real travesty, because I incidentally just discovered it in someone’s fridge whom I had recommended Kerrygold to. I had to facepalm, because I hadn’t mentioned the caveat that you should never buy this kind of Kerrygold. There’s simply no point, except if you need to spread the butter on bread, which is a bad idea for gluten-related reasons. So, taking this and everything above into account, I’m just done with their shenanigans (oh! that’s an Irish expression, isn’t it? nailed it.)
I’ve been treated as a pariah on my favorite forum, because of this decision and at the subsequent cautioning of others about the tangible negative effects I am currently attributing to GMOs in Kerrygold. At least one other blogger agrees, though, and has decided not to support them. Way to go, buddy! Stand up for what’s right! He provides some other options for real grass-fed butter along with his informative account of why he quit gnawing on the ‘gold.
Thankfully, there’s a local brand I found called Trickling Springs that I get at Mom’s Organic market. It is slightly more expensive than Kerrygold, but surely worth it because of my GMO concerns. Trickling Springs, until 2 weeks ago(!), also had a very delicious goat butter they manufactured, but they have decided to discontinue it because they hate me and must know that I desperately want/need it right now in this difficult time. Actually, they told me they stopped making it because they “have no low-fat goat milk products, so there is no opportunity for us to make butter in a fat-skimming process.” Isn’t that the dickens?!
Where Corn Comes Into the Picture
So, Kerrygold imports some of their supplemental grains, as they admit in the FAQ link from their website linked above. They say they do so because “supplemental feeds are important for the health of the animals. They are used to give the cows a healthy and balanced blend of nutrients, providing them with protein, energy and fiber.” Talk about bullcrap—or in this case, cow dung/chips/patties/crap/manure. Since it is imported, this certainly includes corn, and even some soy.
Corn is genetically engineered to contain a gene from soil bacteria that produce a toxin known as Bt. This toxin is repurposed in this way and incorporated into corn DNA, because it gets into the guts of insects and punctures them, killing the host. This article written by Dr. Mercola on Huffington describes how the gene in the corn that produces this toxin might pass on very easily to your gut bacteria (the ones that survive exposure to the actual toxin in the corn), and your gut essentially becomes a “pesticide factory,” making it very difficult for your gut bacteria to survive in there. This is why it’s so hard to restore gut bacteria, because a lot of your own “good guys” are being genetically modified by proxy to kill everything in their path. When this happens, and you can’t get a good amount of gut bacteria built up in your gut (because they keep killing each other), your intestines become more permeable, which translates into food allergies, allergies in general, and lots of inflammation.
Also, according to the article above, the Bt toxin has been found in the blood of high percentages of children (even babies) and their mothers. So it seems to be a ruddy toxin that can get into your blood pretty easily, a sign that it punctures the gut in humans just as well as it does rats. To anyone who doubts that the 3% in a cow’s feed could result in any significant amount in the butter, consider that a toxin like that, which can so easily puncture your gut and do so much damage, should be taken seriously in any amount. Even if it’s just 3%, on a microscopic level, it’s really hard to tell what volume of Bt toxin that equates to. It is present in every grain of corn, so it could definitely accumulate significantly in the milk produced by the cow (though this has not been tested).
The Synergy of Toxicity
The combined effect of round-up, Bt toxin, and gluten is the most common 1-2-3 punch that so many guts are suffering from today. This excellent article from Responsible Technology explains it in detail. The leaky gut so many of us end up with can manifest in many ways. I was interested to discover that wheat is not genetically modified, so it’s not really in and of itself the cause of the gluten allergy. Bt toxin from GMO corn, however, has been linked in rat studies (mentioned in the article) to the development of new food allergies. So, if you go on a gluten-free diet, you’ll probably be replacing bread with corn, and thus make yourself even more sensitive to gluten. Forget cheat days at that point!
That progression just so happens to be how it happened for my wife and I. She probably got a leakier gut as she ate less white rice and more corn, spent more and more time in a moldy house with lots of EMFs, and developed a gluten allergy which was very noticeable because of the amount of bread she was eating. Then, we both go gluten-free, we start eating tons of corn tortillas (it was ridiculous), continue being in a moldy house, and eventually get incredibly allergic to anything having to do with wheat, along with a ton of other proteins that used to be really easy to deal with, like dairy, nuts, and sometimes eggs.
Everything matters when it comes to your diet and environment now. Protect them in the same way you protect your head. This means avoid close contact with EMFs near your gut, too, as they may very well be part of the onslaught on the friends in your bowel. Gut bacteria, the gatekeepers of the epithelial barrier in your intestines, used to do a lot to shield you from what used to be benign proteins. Without their help, we’re all like open wounds, constantly being gouged so that the scab can never do its job then fall off and reveal a fresh patch of strong skin.
So, I cannot stress enough that you should try and remove all potential sources of Bt toxin and corn from your life. You could be doing everything right but still getting a steady but small source of Bt toxin from that 3% GM feed in your Kerrygold. The expression “crap rolls downhill” seems to apply in this situation, even if said crap is in the form of a delicious gold bar of yummy goodness.
Corn character source: kidsdungeonadventure.com