New research suggests that Monsanto’s Roundup weedkiller not only damages healthy soil, but may alter the human microbiome – leaving us vulnerable to deadly diseases.
Scientists are only beginning to learn the importance of healthy gut bacteria to overall health – and the relationship between natural healthy soil and the human microbiome.
Scott.net reports: We know that the human microbiome – often referred to as our “second brain” – plays a key role in our health, from helping us digest the food we eat, to boosting our brain function and regulating our immune systems.
Similar to animals, plants and soil, our bodies contain trillions of microbes – microscopic living organisms, such as bacteria, fungi and protozoa. The microbes in each person’s body are unique, but not random. They colonise in the body, beginning from birth, depending on the microbes passed on by the mother. Over our lifetimes, they evolve according to our unique exposure to the outside world in order to protect us from diseases, such as cancer, diabetes and even autism.
What happens when our microbial community is disturbed? New research suggests that exposure to environmental toxins, such as pesticides, may alter the human microbiome, leaving us more vulnerable to sickness and disease.
A second new study suggests that the most widely used herbicide on the planet – Monsanto’s Roundup weedkiller – could be causing more damage to our gut microbiome and overall health than we thought. Not only does the weedkiller contain glyphosate but in its complete formulation, it also contains toxic levels of heavy metals, including arsenic.
Glyphosate and its unintended effects
A new study shows that Monsanto’s Roundup weedkiller, which we already know damages healthy soil microbial activity, also damages the gut microbiome of rats.
The study, published by Professor Gilles-Eric Séralini at the University of Caen, raises new alarms about glyphosate – the most widely used herbicide in the world, despite mountains of research pointing to the weedkiller’s damaging impacts on human and environmental health.
Glyphosate, the key active ingredient in Roundup, is destructive to the environment. A recent article by GM Watch details the editor of No-Till Farmer – a magazine that advocates for the use GM crops and glyphosate herbicides in no-till systems – is changing his thinking.
John Dobberstein, No-Till Farmer’s senior editor, recently wrote that ‘there may be trouble on the horizon for glyphosate’, citing research showing that glyphosate lingers in the soil – and in high amounts – long after it has been applied.
Citing other researchers, including Robert Kremer – a retired research microbiologist with the USDA-Agricultural Research Service and adjunct professor at the University of Missouri – Dobberstein wrote that glyphosate quietly lingers in soil years after it’s been sprayed, damaging non-target crops and suppressing beneficial mycorrhizal fungi, which help plants obtain nutrients from the soil while offering protection against disease.
Dobberstein wrote, as reported by GM Watch, that the herbicide also harms beneficial soil organisms such as small insects and earthworms, while leaving behind chemical residues that wind up in our waterways.
Microbes prove their value in humans