“Has adding sulfur additives to organically grown crops right up until harvest, and widespread DMAE in skin products which breaks down fibroblast connections between cells, as hazardous to our health as CocaCola putting genetically modified corn sugar, irradiated herbs, and asparatame into their beverages (their claim to fame at the 2010 Olympic games is that CocaCola cotains no preservatives or artificial ingredients, obviously not counting GMO as synthetic)? How difficult can it be to source real sugar which is already complete and perfect, and grow their own viable botanicals – we’re talking CocaCola Corporation. Is it part of our cultural propensity to profess to believe what we do not believe, for the sake expediancy, as though we haven’t entered the age of reason?”
IMPORTANT NOTICE: Sulfur’s been ending up in the stomachs of unsuspecting consumers of fresh produce. Elemental sulfur consumed as an additive acidifies body pH, unlike foods that are a natural source of sulfur like carniferous vegetables or foods like lemons which have a healthy alkalinizing effect on body pH.
Case study: A 30-year old man collapsed in a sulfur hot spring reservoir after he and an 18-year old man had been shoveling the precipitant debris at the bottom for 2 hours. At the emergency room both presented with tachypnea and diffuse bronchi rales, and wheezing were audible throughout their chests. Both exhibited pulmonary edema, developed refractory respiratory failure, and died within 12 hours of exposure.
Who would have ever guessed, the Canadian Organic Standards and the USDA have (wittingly or unwittingly) provided organic growers with a loophole by which to add Sulfur to fresh produce, since it’s not allowed post harvest. Elemental sulfur has been applied to plants during the blossoming and leafing stage of growth, which is fair enough, except Organic Standards extended the time right up to just before harvest. I don’t see any difference between applying sulfur additives to fresh produce immediately before harvest, immediately after harvest, or at the salad bar, do you? (By the way there’s one exception, organic baby greens generally are not contaminated with sulfur additives.)
Surely a window between the final application of sulfur on fruit and vegetables, and harvest, would help ensure certified organic produce is indeed clear of additives (which is what consumers expect from produce that’s certified). Or conversely, transparency regarding the date of final sulfur application is a basic respect of our human right to clean unadulterated food. The very definition of “certified orgainic” is a product which can be relied upon to be free of additives when it arrives on your table. In the meantime as the integrity of our food supply is sorted out, how can athletes reduce the effects of sulfur? Body’Fit pH Fitness™ exercise (short form… pHx™) quickly gets oxygen deep into the organs to help oxydize H2S and help neutralize the acidity of elemental sulfur.
July 29th, 2009 email from PACS Certification Committee to Suzanna:
Hello Suzanna:There is no issue. Sulphur is allowed. The field recommendations for this year are that if there is evidence of mildew on leaves a grower can continue spraying up to harvest. Sulphur is also applied for ridding of mildew on crops.The PACS Certification Committee
Authors reply to above email:Thank you for clarifying this point… with this awareness I will be able to start the process of sourcing fresh produce which has not been treated with sulfur. Like many people where overexposure has led to sensitivity, I’m sensitive to it…
*Hydrogen Sulfide or H2-S is one of the principle compounds involved in the natural cycle of sulfur in the environment. H2-S is generated where ever sulfur is found in an oxygen-depleted environment… such as the small intestine during exercise and physical activity (or stress of any kind for that matter). This source of H2-S is of particular concern because there is no oxygen present to oxydize it into free sulfate or conjugated sulfur in the urine. H2-S is distributed in the body to the brain, liver, kidneys, pancreas, and small intestine, and is a potential health hazard. Elemental sulfur is used as an agricultural dis-infectant.
Case study: A 30-year old man collapsed in a hot spring reservoir after he and an 18-year old man had been shoveling the precipitant debris at the bottom for 2 hours. At the emergency room both presented with tachypnea and diffuse rhonchi, rales, and wheezing were audible throughout their chests. Both exhibited pulmonary edema, developed refractory respiratory failure, and died within 12 hours of exposure.
Physiologic effects of human exposure to H2-S
Odor intensity Threshold 0.02 ppm
Minimally perceptible 0.12 ppm
faint but readily perceptible 0.77 ppm
Easily noticeable moderate 4.6 ppm
Strong unpleasant but not intolerable 27 ppm
Eye and respiratory tract irritation 50 ppm
H2-S is an irritant and an asphyxiant gas. H2-S is well known by its characteristic sulfur odor. The perception threshold varies with individuals, however at a concentration of 50 ppm it acts as an irritant on the mucous membranes of the eyes and respiratory tract. It’s irritant action on the eye produces kertoconjunctiviitis, or a stye. When inhaled H2S ats as an irritant in the entire respiratory tract, the deeper structures experience the greatest damage.
The main target organs or systems for H2-S include the olfactory apparatus, eyes, respiratory system, and nervous system. However the heart, digestive system and endocrine system may also be affected.
The effect on the sense of smell may occur gradually on exposure to small amounts of gas. The direct action of H2-S on the mucous membranes of the eyes is usually observed as the first symptom of eye irritation and can result in local inflammation of the conjunctiva and cornea. Conjunctivitis or sore eyes have ben observed on exposures starting at 5 ppm (1 and 2).
Prolonged exposure to H2-S causes inflammation and dryness of the respiratory tract. Cough, sore throat, hoarseness, runny nose, and chest tightness are the most common symptoms, and can result in rhinitis, pharyngitis, laryngitis, bronchitis, and pneumonia which is thought to be partly due to the impaired ciliary activity and alveolar macrophage dysfunction from exposure to S2-H. Because H2S can penetrate the alveoli, pulmonary edema is not uncommon.
H2-S effect on the central nervous system has been considered to be the reslut of enzyme poisoning at the cellular level. After absorption in the gut (in the case of athletes) H2-S is quickly transported to the brain. Central nervous system depression such as drowsiness, fatigue, and dizziness, may occur. If the concentration of H2-S production in the anaerobic environment in the intestine, headache, weakness of extremities, spasms, nausea, agitation may become more prominent. This may be followed by rapid loss of consciousness and respiratory paralysis, and death may appear without warning. Many victims recover completely by eliminating exposure to sulfur in the diet and to environmental exposure. However irreversible damage is not uncommon after H2-S poisoning.
Although studies regarding the health effects of H2-S on the other organs are limited, however electrocardiogram tracings indicative of cardiac arhythmia, myocardial ischemia, and myocardial infarction have been observed in H2-S intoxication. Subacute poisoning has been shown to led to cardiac arrythmia while acute poisoning caused ventricular repolarization,
The gastrointestinal and endocrine systems H2-S produces symptoms of nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal cramps, gastric burning, and irregular menstruation.
Athletes exposed to just 5 ppm H2-S showed biochemical changes in the parameters which are markers for aerobic and anaerobic metabolism- indicating that H2-S reduces oxygen availability for celluar respiration. H2-S is a more potent inhibitor than cyanide of cytochrome oxidase, resulting in tissue hypoxia (3).
One striking observation in studies of H2-s exposure was the predominance of systemic neurologic manifestations over local irritative effects. A high portion of patients had altered behavior patterns, confusion, vertigo, agitation or somnolence. Respiratory tract effects were second in frequency only to neurologic manifestations. Less severely affected patients complained primarily of headache, eye infections, or gastrointestinal upsets and indigestion.
Reports suggest that prolonged exposure of athletes to H2-S concentrations of less than 50 ppm may produce a chronic form of poisoning. (The details of these reports are not readily available online.) Clearly pH fitness is integral to the neurological health of athletes, as returning pH to normal fast restores the balance of electrolytes for Peak Metabolic Potential (PMP).
1. American Confernece of governmental Industrial Hygenists, 1991 Hydrogen Sulfide i
2. The chemistry of industrial toxicology New Yor, John Wiley and Sons, 1950
3. Albaum HG, Tepperman J. Bedzniak O. Spectrophotometric study of competition on methernoglobin and cytochrome oxidase for sulfide in vitro / Bal Chen 1394c1843641 -467
*Clinical environmental health and toxic exposures By John burke Sullivan, Gary R. Krieger.