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Does the chemical glyphosate (Roundup) mimic gluten sensitivity?


Gluten Free Society Expert Interview Series

Presenting Dr. Seneff on Roundup:

I recently sat down with Dr. Seneff from MIT to discuss the potential dangers associated with exposure to the chemical glyphosate (also known as round up). This chemical is one of the most commonly used herbicides (weed killers) in the U.S. It is used primarily on genetically modified “Roundup Ready” crops like corn, soy, canola, sorghum, alfalfa, and cotton, but is also being used on sugar cane and coffee crops. To listen to the interview and get the in depth story from the source, click play below or download the interview here. Please share, like, tweet, etc. Spread the word and together we can increase awareness of this issue. You can read the transcript of the interview below. Always looking out for you, Dr. O – The Gluten Free Warrior gluten intolerance quizThink you might be gluten sensitive? >>> Take this short quiz for free <<<

Transcript Part 1:

Dr. Osborne: Hi. This is Dr. Peter Osborne with Gluten-free Society and today I have a very special guest on the phone with me, Dr. Stephanie Seneff of MIT. Dr. Seneff, thank you so much for being present today and taking the time out of your busy schedule to speak with us. Dr. Seneff: My pleasure. I’m delighted. Dr. Osborne: Would you introduce yourself and just tell everyone what your background is and what your education is? Dr. Seneff: Yes. I’m at MIT. I’ve been here all my adult life. I went here as an undergraduate, majored in biology with a minor in food and nutrition. My PhD is in computer science and I’ve spent many years working in computer science and I’ve spent many years working in computer science natural language and understanding processing. Many papers published and whatnot. Over the past seven years, I’ve been transitioning more to the biology side again, returning to the past, in a sense. I’ve become really passionately interested in trying to understand what’s causing all of the problems that we’re seeing today in our health. I’m convinced that there are major environmental toxins that are making us sick, and I need to identify which ones they are. I’ve been systematically studying that for the last seven years and really gained a lot of insight and understanding about what’s happening, and now the question is how to fix it, I think. I’ve published several papers in the last few years in biology and medicine, with co-authors, collaborated with a number of people in this space of the role of environmental toxins in modern diseases. Dr. Osborne: Your recent paper, Interdisciplinary Toxicology, co-authored with Anthony Sampsell, was what actually turned me on to some of your work and theories around Roundup, the chemical that is prominently being used on many of our crops. Can you talk a little bit about Roundup and talk about its use and how that’s increased? Let’s go into how you found the correlation between its use and the increased incidence of gluten reactivity. Dr. Seneff: It’s quite amazing. I mean, when you start looking you see that among all the chemicals that are used in growing our crops today, Roundup stands out as one whose usage rates have gone up alarmingly in the last ten years, directly in step with the alarming increase in a number of diseases, one of which is Celiac Disease, which seems to have just appeared out of nowhere. I don’t remember even knowing the word a few years back, and now you’ve got the gluten free section in every grocery store in the country, basically. It’s just come out of nowhere. Interesting thing is that wheat, of course wheat has been changed through the years. They’ve done a lot of genetic modifications of the wheat. It’s not the same as the heritage wheat was the in past, but I don’t think that’s the key problem. The problem, I think, is that the glyphosate in Roundup, glyphosate is the active ingredient in Roundup, is being sprayed on the wheat increasingly right before the harvest. Just a few days before the harvest, they spray the wheat with Roundup intentionally, in order to kill it. Wheat is not Roundup Ready. There are many crops that are GMO modified to be Roundup Ready, meaning that they don’t die if they’re exposed to this toxic chemical. Almost all plants die. Glyphosate is a universal herbicide, which is why people find it attractive, and it’s considered to be nontoxic, so farmers think it’s a good choice. Unfortunately, that is wrong. That is an incorrect assumption, from what I’ve seen. I mean, the research that’s been done already, there are a lot of papers that we’ve quoted and referenced in our paper, showing that the idea that glyphosate is nontoxic is simply not true. We think the wheat gluten actually binds to the glyphosate and that disrupts the process that usually happens in the digestive system that would make it into a nontoxic form. That chemical process gets disrupted by the glyphosate, and then the gluten becomes something that the body becomes allergic to. That is what causes the cascade that leads to celiac disease. Dr. Osborne: What you’re saying, then–I want to put it into very laymen’s terms for some of our listeners–is that the glyphosate being sprayed on the wheat binds to the wheat and basically increases its toxicity or makes it more toxic. Or are you saying that the wheat– Dr. Seneff: It makes it allergenic. Dr. Osborne: Okay. It just basically makes it more allergenic. Dr. Seneff: Yes Dr. Osborne: I’ve read some papers, and some of the things you’ve mentioned in your research are the effect on transglutaminases. I’ve read some papers on adding microbial transglutaminases to dairy products and how that increases the allergenicity of dairy, because it unfolds proteins in the dairy that actually look very similar to gluten and therefore increase that reaction. Dr. Seneff: That’s very interesting. I didn’t know that, actually. That’s something new to me. I guess– Dr. Osborne: I’ll have to send you that. Nextpage          

21 Responses

  1. Dr Osborne, Thank YOU!!
    Yes, amazingly important stuff.
    Please, please post up a transcript of this audio interview.

    Not a speed typist…yes, iron and tyrosine from the liver needed by adrenals for forming thyroxine. As per Dr Lam in Oregon, adrenals are often taking primary hit, pulling down the thyroid as a secondary. OMG…

  2. Peter,
    You managed and guided that interview very well, and helped render her wide ranging biochemical knowledge and forensic knowledge into a valuable and very informative session.
    I think Dr. Seneff is a great ally in the cause. She seems to be enthusiastic, and you helped bring out her knowledge in a very accessible way.
    Carry on, and Thank you!

  3. This is so inspiring to hear… as well as disturbing, of course. It make so much sense! There was no mention about glyphosate in meat. Do you think that if animals are fed grains that may contain glyphosate, that it will be present and harmful in the meat products from those animals?

    Thank you for sharing all this great research with us. I will definitely be sharing with many!!

    1. I believe that glyphosate does enter the meat from grain-fed animals. I am allergic to glyphosate with specific symptoms. I recently had a steak at a high-end restaurant that tasted terrible, and I had glyphosate exposure symptoms afterwards. I looked up the source of their meat, supposedly a family farm, and it turned out this “family farm” was a large commercial feedlot that specialized in grain-feeding cattle from young calves onward.

      If you want to eat meat, make certain it is 100% grass fed. Often cattle will be raised on grass then “grain finished”. Bison also. I have yet to have glyphosate from lamb in a restaurant…..the few times I go out to eat anymore.

      1. There could also be a “nutrition” effect. I presume that meat from an animal suffering from the health effects of glyphosate is not going to provide the same level of sustenance.

  4. Thank you for this. I have so many friends who are farmers and they just don’t understand how bad this is. They are lied to by everyone. Extension services are the worst. I went to an university extension conference and they handed out hundreds of dollars in Syngenta and Monsanto door prizes to the university scientists and agents. I have a friend who is a farmer who every year gets a free trip from Monsanto to Hawaii for buying chemical from them. There is just so much information out there to tell farmers to use these products. When I worked for Extension we used to do a cost sharing program for round up and every years people would pile in the door to get it. One man filled out his form and asked where the warnings were. He said he had cancer and just got back from Mayo and they made him fill out all these forms on pesticide exposure for a study and told him how bad it was. He was right back in line though trying to buy it the next year. These farmers don’t know how to farm without it. I just think this is a huge mountain. Thank you for your service

  5. Your audio with Dr Seneff was one of the most valuable ever. Thank so very much for all your hard work.

    The G-F issue is out of control. I am a 76-year old gluten-sensitive woman who is about to publish a cookbook-memoir about the dangers of the gluten-free diet fad and have requested your permission to use some of your info several times.

    I am not getting much better after the initial improvement a few years ago and am working with an alternative practitioner and a gluten expert doctor to get rid of this sensitivity.

    I forward your information to my marketing clients, all of whom i request to do an authentc G-F regime so they will have the energy reserves and vitality entrepreneurs rerquire to be successful.

  6. I am curious about the cross reactivity of foods with Gluten sensitivity/Celiacs and this subject. You mention coffee and sulfites….how can we make sure that these products don’t have Roundup in them? Is the general rule that food/products are safe if they are certified organic? Also what are you thoughts on micotoxins in coffee and gluten sensitivity?
    thank you,

  7. Thanks for sharing this important reality.This is very important for the public health .thanks for your efforts.

  8. Gluten is basically a protein present in almost everything you consume.
    Finally, you will find that it is not appropriate for you to order
    oatmeal when you are out in a restaurant because you will never know if it is pure or not.
    For most of us, we seem to do just fine with eating things like pasta,

    My blog post; dr peter osborne reviews

    1. We lived in predominantly rural farming area in australia where round up was used extensively plus aerial spraying of herbicides and hormone sprays. We were aerial sprayed mid morning many years ago. My daughter had health problems afterwards but they climaxed when she was 15 – elevated pulse, shaking from the inside out, unwellness, stomach problems, hair loss, etc. After few years of doctors visits and tests and no joy…she self diagnosed as gluten intolerant/sensitive plus we moved from the country to the city. We found a short term doctor who agreed and advised her to keep following a gluten free diet plus to also incorporate a low fodmap diet…since then we have seen a lot of improvement.

  9. Hi Dr Osborne
    I’ve been following you for years, but I abandoned when you came up with “No grain no pain”, because I was already struggling with glyphosate in fruit and vegetables. With all my respect, I even asked myself if you were not linked to Monsanto and hiding the real cause. But today with this remarkable interview, I’m really sorry for my passed thoughts about you.

    There is one very important point that I wish to be brought to the public. Corn “gluten” (zenine) is being used as a weed-killer and fertilizer. As we know, most corn are already contaminated with glyphosate. Unfortunately, by experience, I realize that many plants seem to absorb this product by their roots and it ends up in the fruits and the leaves. For example, only Turbana plantains don’t give me reactions (I never tried the Burro brand, not available in my area). Turbana plantains come from Columbia, one of the seven countries where glyphosate is banned. All the other plantain’s brand that I tried, even organics, trigger reactions in me. On top of it, the rules for organic in Quebec say that growers may use cereals as fertilizer but organic if available, else they may use non organic, and I guess that those rules are similar everywhere. Corn is being use as a Trojan horse.

    Very sensitive people like me are in deep trouble. But a great consolation: we receive an alert while non-sensitive people are slowly developing very weird moderns deseases with no prior notice. This point has to be clearly exposed: we don’t have to be obviously sensitive to be killed by glyphosate. Another great consolation is that we, sensitive people, don’t have any gluten related desease or allergy; our immune system react properly by alerting us against a poison, while non sensitive people are having their organs ( kidneys, prostate, pancreas…) damaged silently.

    To everyone, we must do everything to end this crime against, not only humanity, but life on the planet. So please spread that information.

  10. First thing’s first: Thank you both for the amazing work here!

    Just a thought on treating glyphosate in water:
    Off the bat I would guess that ozonation could be one method, but it would be worth investigating what the glyphosate oxidises too and whether that’s also harmful.
    Chlorination is the more common means of disinfection (as it provides residual treatment). I’m not sure what effect this has on glyphosate.

    1. Thank you, Stanley, for your comment. I especially resonate with what you said about how non-sensitive people are being damaged just the same but are unaware of it. It’s so hard to be on the side “knowing” that glyphosate is damaging yet well-intentioned people who aren’t as informed say they are fine and I’m the crazy one. Sigh. And yes, farmers are being lied to. One thing that makes me laugh is that the “inventor” of Glyphosate lives in Ankeny, Iowa, I believe, and that a food-based prescription formula for Gut Healing is also based in Ankeny, IA. (see Enteragam by Entera Health, Inc.based in Ankeny, Iowa)
      Deepest thanks to Dr. Osborne and thank you to others for their additional comments. If there’s a petition started against Glyphosate, send it my way– I’m ready to sign it!

  11. I’m 70 years of age, and was diagnosed with celiac disease several years ago. In the beginning, I ignored my doctor’s concerns. In recent years, I have been diagnosed with thyroid problems, fibromyalgia, digestive system problems, neuropathy, and blurred vision and balance issues. I’m being treated separately for all of these, but the more I study, the more I realize that gluten has destroyed my health. I have pain that pretty much rules my days, ad most pain medications don’t help at all. What does help, my doctors don’t want me to take due to my stomach issues. Some days, I take it anyway. The frustrations of finding foods that aren’t contaminated is just so unfair. What I’m learning is that, here in America, our F.D.A., and our D.O.A. are okaying medications and growing foods that a growing number of people can’t eat. I worry about future generations, wondering if they will build up immunities as they mature. . . For me, I’m ready to give up trying. Every move I make to have a healthy diet runs me into another wall. I probably won’t be around for many more years, so maybe I’ll just chuck the whole effort, take the meds that kill my pain and enjoy myself ’till my time comes.

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