This post was updated in 2021: my own test results for glyphosate were high. See the bottom of this post.
For my family, it was important for me to learn to detox glyphosate because it is simply everywhere.
Glyphosate is the primary ingredient of Monsanto’s best-selling weed killer. Glyphosate is listed as a probable carcinogen and was declared so by the World Health Organization. However, a quick google search will give you plenty of articles disputing that glyphosate causes cancer. Maybe that's because there's big money involved and we are the guinea pigs. (1,2)
The Environmental Protection Agency even protected corporate profits by hiding the truth about how toxic glyphosate truly is. Researchers, like Dr. Samsel, knew this as far back as the 1970's.
Dr. Samsel states that studies conducted by Biodynamics, located in New Jersey, between the years of 1978 and 1980, clearly showed that even low doses of glyphosate could induce tumor growth in internal organs. These same studies were submitted to the EPA in 1981.
Despite the fact that these studies provided substantial evidence of glyphosate’s toxicity, the agency merely labeled the studies as “not significant.”
The evidence suggesting that the EPA has known about the dangers of glyphosate has only continued to grow. Just last year, it was reported that the agency knew about the product’s carcinogenic capacity a whopping 35 years ago. According to Sustainable Pulse, several archived and accessible memos from the EPA during the early 1980s indicate that glyphosate causes harm, especially to the kidneys. (source)
Tests show glyphosate in foods at extreme levels. Research indicates that it is now even turning up in our rain.
Exposure for Children Even Before Birth
Children, unfortunately, can be affected even before birth. Studies show that glyphosate crosses the placental barrier. (detoxproject.org) Moms Across America states that glyphosate also turns up in breastmilk. The pro-GMO side debates test results. (source)
Parental exposure to glyphosate up to two years before a child’s conception was linked to an increased risk of developing brain cancer. In fact, the risk of brain tumors actually doubles with glyphosate exposure in that time frame. (source)
As if parental exposure wasn't bad enough, vaccines have tested positive for glyphosate contamination. The MMR, DTaP, HepB, Shingles, Chicken Pox, and others were discovered by Dr. Samsel to contain various amounts of glyphosate. (1)
Toxic Glyphosate exposure doesn't always occur in one single episode, but when this does happen the reaction is downright frightening. For example, the case in Peru where nearly 100 people became violently ill after a plane fumigated a sugar cane crop nearby. (2)
Think that doesn't happen in America? Parks, where our children play, are being sprayed with pesticides. Check out this map of San Francisco and video footage in San Francisco parks. Also, take a look at this map from 2012 showing glyphosate hot spots in the US.
Hard to Avoid Glyphosate
Does all this depressing news make you want a glass of wine? Well, be careful in your selection since 100% of California wines tested positive for glyphosate. It's no surprise 93% of Americans test positive for glyphosate poison.
The permitted amount allowed in drinking water etc. is 700 ppm (parts per million) however, some science suggests that even at low doses this endocrine disruptor can wreak havoc on your hormones.
These pesticides are considered an unwashable danger. Rinsing pesticides off of produce is not possible as it only eliminates about 15% whereas peeling removes about 85% of pesticides but also reduces nutrition. (source) Glyphosate residue is still on produce even after soaking in bleach for two minutes. A recent study showed that soaking in baking soda and water removed more surface glyphosate residue than bleach. (3) Important note: washing in either bleach or baking soda does not remove all traces of glyphosate.
Keep in mind that many seeds are “roundup ready,” meaning they are genetically modified crop seeds that are resistant to its glyphosate-based herbicide, Roundup. There is a lot of controversy over the safety of these seeds. The debate will likely not end any time soon.
Preventing is always easier than curing, so try to avoid ingesting as much as possible. Since it's not possible to completely avoid it, you'll also want to learn about detox.
Drinking Clean Water
One way to reduce the load of pesticides is to clean up your drinking water. We have a Reverse Osmosis system that removes glyphosate as well as other contaminants. According to the Environmental Working Group using RO will remove glyphosate, which is one of many reasons we have one.
Since we absorb into our bodies what we put on our skin, it is also important to bathe in clean water. Using a shower filter can help reduce toxins absorbed transdermally.
Detox the body of glyphosate
So what are the options when it comes to your health and glyphosate and other toxic chemicals? The first suggestion is to switch to an organic diet. Look for food that is certified non-GMO.
University research has demonstrated that certified Organic diets significantly lower children’s dietary exposure to organophosphorus pesticides. (detoxproject.org)
To avoid glyphosate toxicity, it is helpful for mothers as well as children to transition to an organic diet and avoid GMO foods. Use EWG's lists to shop smart and help determine which fruits and vegetables to buy organic. Although it is important to note that organic food is not 100% free of glyphosate since it can travel on the wind and in water.
GMO crops such as soybeans may contaminate the soil, although there are studies that show it does not adversely affect soil health. (Studies can be found on both sides of this debate.)
Dirty Dozen (those with the most pesticides)
- Sweet bell peppers
- Cherry tomatoes
Clean Fifteen (those with the least pesticides)
- Sweet Corn
- Frozen sweet peas
- Honeydew Melon
Other Foods that help detox glyphosate
When meal planning, especially focus on foods containing sulfur to detox glyphosate. These include broccoli, cauliflower, kale, and Brussels Sprouts. Other detoxifying foods include garlic, asparagus, grapefruit, or citrus foods in general, and foods rich in fiber.
Eating Cilantro can be an excellent way to detox not just glyphosate but also heavy metals.
Drinking sauerkraut juice is another way to detox the liver and kidneys. Since humic acid and fulvic acid occur naturally in sauerkraut juice; both of which help the body expel glyphosate through the urine. In addition, sauerkraut has probiotics.
Probiotic Rich Foods Can Help
Glyphosate destroys the gut microbiome. By disrupting the shikimate pathway in plants it causes a decrease in the ratio of beneficial to harmful bacteria (which is the point of roundup.)
Eating a diet rich in probiotics, as well as prebiotics, can help to restore the microbiota which have been killed by glyphosate.
Supplements to help detox glyphosate
One superfood detoxing agent is Chlorella which also has plenty of other health benefits such as mercury poisoning. Chlorella is available in tablets or liquid form.
- Silymarin Milk Thistle
- Vitamin C
- Dandelion Root
- Lactobacillus (strain of probiotic)
More ways to detox from glyphosate
- Sauna use will help you sweat out toxins
- Chelation can be useful in detoxification, especially in the case of lead or mercury toxicity. I have personally used Chelation IV Therapy to detox heavy metals.
- Oral chelation therapy
- Bentonite Clay baths are very helpful for pulling out toxins.
- Colonics, Coffee Enemas help by keeping the bile ducts open and flushing toxins from your liver and boost production of glutathione.
- Methylation support in the way of B vitamins.
- Dry Brushing or skin brushing helps the lymphatic system flush toxins from your system.
- Exercise increases blood flow to the kidneys helping them to eliminate toxins efficiently. Shoot for 30 minutes to one hour per day.
- Discourage neighbors from the use of glyphosate if possible. (Glyphosate herbicides are used by many people and businesses as weed killer, and is the active ingredient in many products.) *see update from 2021
- Glutathione is produced in the liver as a defense against toxins; it also provides crucial immune system support. Some functional medicine clinics offer IV drips with Glutathione, it is also available transdermally. Depending on your doctor and the levels of glyphosate shown on your labwork, this may be one recommendation.
Update 2021: Bayer to replace glyphosate from US lawn products by 2023:
More studies are currently underway in reference to glyphosate as a chelator that impedes uptake and availability of macro and micronutrients in plants
Bayer, which makes and sells Roundup, has been “losing trials left and right,” according to the federal judge overseeing the litigation, in claims brought by people suffering from non-Hodgkin lymphoma who say exposure to Monsanto's Roundup and other glyphosate-based herbicides were the cause.Environmental Health News
In 2021 my doctor ordered a variety of tests, one result that came back made me revisit this post. My glyphosate levels were double the high end on the chart. Even though I eat organic, drink reverse osmosis water, and never spray our yard. We are exposed to glyphosate in the environment from our neighbors and around the community. The other aspect of this is how well your body does the important job of detox. Mine hadn't been doing a great job. Which is why I stepped up my game. I bought a sauna and I sweat it out a minimum of five days per week, sometimes more. I'm taking Pomegranate capsules and some of the other tips mentioned in this article.
1 – http://farmwars.info/?p=15100
2 – http://www.cancer.org/cancer/cancercauses/othercarcinogens/generalinformationaboutcarcinogens/known-and-probable-human-carcinogens
The Detox Project: Glyphosate in Numbers https://detoxproject.org/glyphosate-in-numbers/
3 – https://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/acs.jafc.7b03118
3 – https://www.nytimes.com/2015/03/25/opinion/stop-making-us-guinea-pigs.html?_r=1
4 – http://www.mauigmomoratoriumnews.org/92-peruvian-kids-poisoned-glyphosate-ingredient-monsantos-roundup/