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05_20_07: Beef/Fertility, Vegan Blood Analysis, Fat/Salt & Your Heart

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  • Mark Sutton
    Howdy! Welcome to the 59th issue of the Mad Cowboy Newsletter. In this issue s Mad Cow Info Round-Up you ll find, among many cites, some interesting
    Message 1 of 1 , May 20, 2007
      Howdy! Welcome to the 59th issue of the Mad Cowboy Newsletter. In this issue's "Mad Cow Info Round-Up" you'll find, among many cites, some interesting articles about the molecular similiarity between Altzheimer's disease, diabetes, and Parkinson's disease, how Bovine Tuberculosis can be spread to humans, a deadly fish virus in the Greak Lakes, and struggles by the US to get South Korea and Japan to accept our beef.

      Note that our "Flu News" section has been updated with more information on the spread of the disease and warnings from gov't and other high officials as to the serious potential epidemic we are facing. There's also an intriguing project using "Google Maps" to track the spread of the disease.

      Reading further, there's a dynamite recipe from Nava Atlas (as published in "No More Bull!"), information about the recent pet food recall (and resources available on pet food issues, making your own, and recommended products). There's also studies on the consumption of beef and fertility, a unique analysis comparing the blood of vegans and omnivores, and new discoveries about fat and salt and their relationship to your heart beat rate and blood pressure. A "must see" is the short panel discussion (in "Veg Video Watch") between Drs. McDougall, Esselstyn, and Fuhrman.

      ...and as always, a tip of the hat to our new subscribers. Y'all can read past issues of the newsletter at:


      Best wishes to everyone for a great Spring and get those tomatoes into the ground asap!

      [personal vegan blog: http://www.soulveggie.com]


      00: Quote(s) from Howard
      01: The Vegan Mind-Bender Contest Winner/Challenge!
      02: Recipes from "No More Bull!"
      03: Mad Cow Info Round-up
      04: Bird Flu News
      05: Pet Food, Melamine, Chickens, Swine, & What's in the Stuff
      06: Veg Video Watch
      07: Beef & Fertility, Vegan vs Omnivore Blood, Fat/Salt & the Heart
      08: Events of Note
      09: Howard's Schedule
      10: Quick Bytes
      11: Closing Thoughts

      *00: Quote(s) from Howard
      "We need to challenge researchers to bigger, bolder tests of diet. I'd love to see a comparative study of vegan versus vegetarian versus meat-oriented diets that incorporated as it's participants those already passionately committed to their styles of eating. Let's look at all health and weight loss consequences long term, with a body of participants unlikely to fall off their respective diets. Most urgently, I'd love to see a study that correlated vegan, vegetarian, and standard American diets with the risk of Alzheimer's disease.

      In the meantime, there's already an abundance of established scientific fact that needs to be conveyed to our population at large."

      --- Howard Lyman, p. 84 in "No More Bull!"

      *01: The Vegan Mind-Bender Contest Winner/Challenge!
      "How many influenza pandemics are recognized as having occurred in the 20th century?"

      (a) 1 (b) 2 (c) 3 (d) 4

      The correct answer is: (c) 3. Congratulations to Fraggle for the right answer and winning the luck of the draw.

      [1918, 1957/58, and 1968/69:

      "What's the yearly estimate for number of tons of polyethylene terephthalate bottles (formerly containing water) thrown into USA landfills?"

      (a) 2 million tons (b) 10 million tons (c) 20 million tons (d) this question makes my head hurt

      Please e-mail guesses to: webmaster@... with the word "contest" in your subject line by NLT June 7th, 2007.

      [Many thanks to Joe Connelly, Editor, VegNews, who has offered a FREE one-year subscription to a winner chosen at random those submitting the correct answer to each MC Newsletter's Contest. Our thanks to Joe, and you can learn more about VegNews at:

      http://www.vegnews.com or e-mail: editor@... or call 1.415.665.6397]

      *02: Some Recipes from "No More Bull!"

      (yield: 4 to 6 servings)

      "Lentils have a definite affinity with curry spices, which, when combined with the tomatoes here, form a fragrant, savory broth.

      1 cup raw lentils
      1 TBL olive oil
      2 cloves garlic, minced
      1/2 pound spinach leaves, preferably fresh, stemmed, washed, and chopped, or equivalent of frozen thawed and drained
      1 (14-oz) can imported plum tomatoes with liquid, chopped
      2 to 3 TBS good curry powder or Home-Mixed Curry (recipes follows), more or less to taste
      1/4 tsp freshly grated ginger
      1/4 tsp cinnamon
      1/4 tsp nutmeg

      Wash and sort the lentils and cook until they are tender but firm (cover with water in a 3 to 1 ratio, bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer until tender, about 40 minutes or so).

      Heat the olive oil in a large skillet. When it is hot, add the garlic and sauate over moderately low heat for 1 minute or so. Add the spinach leaves, cover, and steam until they are wilted.

      Add the lentils and the remaining ingredients to the skillet. Cover and simmer over very low heat for 15 minutes. Serve over grains. This is especially good over brown rice or couscous, or, for a delicious change of pace, try this over mashed potatoes."


      "Compare the rich scent of this mixture with a supermarket curry powder and you won't believe the difference.

      2 tsp ground cumin
      2 tsp ground coriander
      2 tsp ground turmeric
      1 tsp ground nutmeg
      1 tsp salt
      1/2 tsp cinnamon
      1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
      1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

      Simply spoon each of the spices into a spice jar and shake well to mix. Another alternative is to buy a pre-mixed curry froma spice shop or an Indian food shop.

      Originally published in "Vegetariana, by Nava Atlas" and now in "No More Bull!, by Howard Lyman" p. 137-138.

      *03: Mad Cow Info Round-up
      JUDGE: U.S. GOV'T MUST ALLOW PRIVATE TESTING FOR MAD COW DISEASE: (03/29/07): "The U.S. government must allow meatpackers to test their animals for mad cow disease, a judge ruled Thursday.
      Creekstone Farms Premium Beef, a meatpacker based in Arkansas City, Kan., wants to test all of its cows for the disease, which can be fatal to humans who eat tainted beef. Larger meat companies feared that move because if Creekstone tested its meat and advertised it as safe, they could be forced to do the expensive test, too. The U.S. Agriculture Department currently regulates the test and administers it to fewer than one per cent of slaughtered cows for the disease. The department threatened Creekstone with prosecution if it tested all its animals. U.S. District Judge James Robertson ruled the government does not have the authority to regulate the test. Robertson put his order on hold until the government can appeal. If the government does not appeal by June 1, he said the ruling will take effect..."

      [Edited from:

      [See also: "Creekstone Ready To Test Its Animals:"

      SOUTH KOREA, U.S. AGREE ON WORLD'S LARGEST BILATERAL FREE TRADE DEAL: (04/03/07): "U.S. and South Korean negotiators struck the world's largest bilateral free trade agreement on Monday, giving the United States a badly needed lift to its trade policy at home and South Korea a chance to reinvigorate its export economy... If ratified, the trade deal would eliminate tariffs on more than 90 percent of the product categories traded between the countries. South Korea agreed to lift trade barriers to important American products like cars and beef, while the United States agreed to allow Seoul to continue to subsidize South Korean rice... As South Korean workers and farmers protested in the streets - on Sunday, one man even set himself on fire - negotiators haggled to the end early on Monday..."

      [Edited from:

      [SLOVENIA] TESTS CONFIRM EIGHTH CASE OF MAD COW DISEASE: (04/03/07): "The tests carried out at the National Veterinary Institute confirmed a new case of mad cow disease in Slovenia, Slovenian Veterinary Administration (VURS) told the press on Monday, 2 April. The seven-year-old cow from Celje region slaughtered the previous week was the eighth case of Bovine Spongiform Encephatolopathy (BSE) found in Slovenia...."

      [Edited from:

      CANADA FINISHES PROBE OF 9TH BSE CASE: (04/04/07): "Canada recently released a report on the investigation of its ninth case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), or mad cow disease, the first case of 2007. The case was in a 79-month-old bull from an Alberta beef farm, according to an investigation report released Mar 26 by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA). The bull was born in 2000, about 3 years after Canada banned the use of cattle protein in feed for cattle and other ruminants in 1997... The report said none of it entered the human food supply or animal feed chain..."

      [Very edited from:

      BEEF FROM CANADIAN CATTLE CANNOT BE IMPORTED UNDER U.S. FTA: OFFICIAL: (04/05/07): "Beef from Canadian cattle cannot be imported under the free trade pact with the United States, an Agriculture Ministry official said Thursday. Bae Jong-ha, the top negotiator for farm issues in the free trade agreement (FTA) talks. said that while alarm bells have been sounded about the risk of Canadian beef coming through the U.S., Seoul can block such shipments... The comments come as civic groups argued that there is a possibility of Canadian cattle herded over the border to the U.S., where they could be slaughtered and processed as American beef. Washington has allowed cross-border movement of live Canadian cattle under 30 months old since mid-2005..."

      [Edited from:

      JAPAN HALTS BEEF IMPORTS FROM CARGILL KANSAS PLANT: (04/06/07): "Japan suspended imports from a Cargill Inc. meatpacking plant in Kansas on Friday after it found a cargo of beef tongue that was not listed in the official U.S. document that came with the shipment, Japanese authorities said. Japan has agreed to allow U.S. beef imports, which were first suspended in December 2003 due to mad cow concerns, but it attached strict conditions such as limits on the age of the cattle and removal of risk material such as spinal cords. Friday's suspension comes as Washington steps up pressure for Tokyo to relax its rules..."

      [Edited from:

      SKOREAN WORKERS, FARMERS MARCH AGAINST US TRADE DEAL: (04/08/07): "Thousands of protestors marched through Seoul Saturday, calling for lawmakers to reject a major free trade deal with the United States. The biggest free trade deal for the US since the 1993 North America Free Trade Agreement has left many local workers and farmers fearing for their jobs and futures... "We don't need US mad-cow beef. Give it to (US President George W.) Bush," chanted around 6,000 protesters.

      They demanded that the South Korean government rip up the agreement and that President Roh Moo-Hyun steps down.... South Korea has pushed for the pact despite strong opposition from workers and farmers who fear for the loss of their incomes and jobs if US goods gain unfettered access to the domestic market. Agriculture -- in particular rice and beef -- and the auto industry were the main areas of contention.

      [Very edited from:

      BOVINE TB 'CAN SPREAD IN HUMANS': (04/12/07): "Bovine TB can spread from human to human, scientists fear after a cluster of six cases, one fatal, in England. All had visited the same Birmingham bar or nightclub, yet only one of the young patients had been in contact with infected unpasteurised milk or cattle. The Health Protection Agency said although rare, the cases emphasised the need for rigorous checks and controls. Experts told The Lancet that bovine TB was an under-appreciated cause of disease and death in humans... Mycobacterium bovis infection in humans used to be relatively common in the late 19th and early 20th centuries... "A low occupational risk of M bovis infection remains for farmers, veterinarians, abattoir workers and other people who may come into contact with infected animals or their carcases, or for those who regularly consume unpasteurised cows milk."

      [Very edited from:

      USDA EXTENDS MAD-COW TESTING AT WSU LAB: (04/17/07): "The only mad-cow testing laboratory in the Pacific Northwest will remain open for six more months, but officials insisted Wednesday it wasn't because of increased fears of the chronic brain-wasting disease in the region. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) contract for testing at Washington State University's College of Veterinary Medicine expired March 1 as part of the agency's efforts to scale back monitoring for bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), also known as mad-cow disease. The USDA has extended the contract through Sept. 30, with the option for further extensions, WSU officials said Wednesday..."

      [Very edited from:

      US URGES JAPAN TO EASE CATTLE AGES RESTRICTIONS: (04/17/07): "The United States Administration is stepping up pressure on Japan to ease age restrictions on its beef. The move comes ahead of an international panel's findings, that the US is largely free of mad cow disease... [US Trade respresentative's office spokeswoman] Ms Hamel says the US will not allow Japan to ignore an expected finding in May by the Organisation of International Epizootics (OIE) that the US is mostly mad cow free..."

      [Edited from:

      DENTISTS MUST NOT RE-USE INSTRUMENTS: (04/19/07): "Dentists must not re-use instruments for root canal treatment because of a possible risk of infecting patients with variant CJD (vCJD), the Chief Dental Officer has said. Dr Barry Cockcroft issued guidance to all dentists in England, telling them to use instruments called reamers and files only once. The "precautionary" measure follows on from advice given to the Department of Health by the Spongiform Encephalopathy Advisory Committee... Around a million NHS endodontic (root canal) treatments are carried out every year in England and Wales... The number of people carrying the infection is unknown, with estimates between one in 1,400 and one in 20,000 people, although it may be less among some age groups..."

      [Edited from:

      24 U.S. SENATORS URGE BUSH TO PRESS ABE ON BEEF ISSUE DURING VISIT: (04/20/07): "Two dozen U.S. senators urged President George W. Bush to press Japan's prime minister to immediately resume full U.S. beef imports. The senators said Shinzo Abe should be made aware of U.S. discontent as he makes his first visit to Washington as Japanese prime minister next week. In a letter to Bush on Friday, the senators said progress in efforts to open Japan's market to U.S. beef has been "incremental and frustrating."...the senators said. "Our patience has run out. Sound science, international trade rules and the Japanese consumer all demand U.S. beef and beef products achieve full access to the Japanese market without delay..."

      [Edited from:

      DEADLY FISH VIRUS THREATENS SPECIES: (04/30/07): "A deadly Ebola-like virus is killing fish of all types in the Great Lakes, a development some scientists fear could trigger disaster for the nation's freshwater fish. Because of a lack of genetic resistance to viral hemorrhagic septicemia, fish populations could be damaged in the same way the smallpox virus struck Native Americans and Dutch elm disease decimated elm trees, said Jim Winton, chief of fish health at the U.S. Geological Survey in Seattle... Fishing is the largest part of the $2 billion wildlife industry in the state, he said. "It would be like chronic wasting disease hitting our deer herd," Markham said, referring to a neurological disease in deer similar to mad cow disease... "VHS is the most important and dangerous fish virus known worldwide," Winton said. "Its discovery in our fresh water is disturbing and potentially catastrophic."... How the virus got into the Great Lakes is unclear. The dumping of ocean water from an international cargo ship is a suspected cause. Also not ruled out: spawning fish swimming upstream or a bird carrying a diseased fish..."

      [Very edited from:

      BAD FEED, DISEASE RULED OUT IN COW DEATHS: (05/02/07): "State agriculture inspectors can't say what killed 50 to 60 cows last year on a dairy farm near Addy, Wash., but they can say what didn't. It wasn't any contaminants in the feed the cows ate. It wasn't lead or arsenic or heavy metals in the hay. It wasn't mad cow disease, or any other communicable illness. State Veterinarian Leonard Eldridge said an investigation found "no threat to the health of people or other animals." The investigation turned up no common cause for the deaths of the cows, which started last May and continued for about seven months.
      "Frankly, we may never know specifically what killed the animals that died before the start of this investigation," Eldridge said in a news release issued Monday..."

      [Edited from:

      CANADIAN AUTHORITIES CONFIRM COUNTRY'S 10TH CASE OF MAD COW DISEASE: (05/03/07): "The Canadian Food Inspection Agency has reportedly confirmed the country's 10th case of mad cow disease since 2003. The diseased dairy cow was found in the western province of British Columbia. Authorities on Wednesday confirmed that no part of the animal entered the human food or animal feed systems and its carcass is under CFIA control. According to preliminary information, the agency is speculating that the 5 1/2-year-old cow was infected during its first year of life... Canada has taken preventive measures to achieve the eventual elimination of BSE from the national cattle herd and also plans to launch an enhanced feed ban on July 12, 2007. The program plans to prevent more than 99 percent of potential BSE infectivity from entering the Canadian feed system."

      [Edited from:

      ALZHEIMER'S, PARKINSON'S, TYPE 2 DIABETES SIMILAR AT MOLECULAR LEVEL: (05/04/07): "Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, type 2 diabetes, the human version of mad cow disease, and other degenerative diseases are more closely related at the molecular level than scientists realized, a team reports this week in an advanced online publication of the journal Nature. While still preliminary, the research, could help scientists develop tools for diagnosing such diseases, and potentially for treating them through "structure-based drug design," said David Eisenberg, a UCLA chemist and molecular biologist who is part of the research team. The researchers studied the harmful rope-like structures known as amyloid fibrils--linked protein molecules that form in the brain. The fibrils contain a stack of water-tight "molecular zippers." "With each disease, a different protein transforms into amyloid fibrils, but all of these diseases are similar at the molecular level," Eisenberg said...

      [Edited from:

      MINN. FIRM RECALLS GROUND BEEF: (05/12/07): "A Minnesota meat packer is recalling 117,500 pounds of beef trim products shipped to customers in eight states because of possible E. coli contamination..."

      [Edited from:

      E. COLI THREAT PROMPTS BEEF RECALL: (05/14/07): "A Michigan meat packer is recalling 129,000 pounds of beef because it may be contaminated with the E. coli bacteria. The firm, Davis Creek Meats and Seafood, of Kalamazoo, Michigan, shipped the beef products between March 1 and April 30, according to USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service. The potentially-contaminated meat was shipped to foodservice distribution centers and Marketplace stores in Arkansas, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia and Wisconsin.

      Federal safety inspectors were not involved in the discovery. Rather, the problem was uncovered by state health officials carrying out the Michigan Department of Community Health's ongoing E coli illness investigation... E. coli exposure can produce stomach cramps and severe diarrhea, but some consumers may experience more severe symptoms. Eating contaminated food can also lead to life-threatening complications, including kidney failure. complications, including kidney failure."

      [Edited from:

      W.VA. DEER INFECTED WITH FATAL DISEASE: (05/14/07): "Three more deer in the West Virginia county that borders Maryland have tested positive for a fatal disease responsible for the deaths of thousands of deer and elk in the Midwest and Rocky Mountain states. Game officials in West Virginia recently tested 101 deer for chronic wasting disease in Hampshire County, just south of Maryland's Allegany County, as part of a continuing surveillance program initiated after 10 deer within a dozen miles of the state border tested positive in September 2005... CWD is a neurological disease caused by a mutant protein called a prion. It is in the same family as mad cow disease, scrapie, which affects sheep, and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, which attacks humans... The first case was detected in Colorado in 1967 and spread east, reaching Wisconsin in 2002. It baffled biologists when it jumped the Mississippi River and infected deer in Illinois. Then two years ago, CWD was detected first in upstate New York and then West Virginia..."

      [Edited from:

      S. KOREA, U.S. AGREE TO DISCUSS BONE-IN BEEF ISSUE US: (05/15/07): "South Korea and the United States agreed Friday to discuss bone-in beef and other import quarantine issues after a world animal health organization's general assembly slated for late May. The decision was reached in a two-day-long beef technical consultation meeting in Seoul. No exact date for the meeting has been set, the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry said. The World Organization for Animal Health is to convene a meeting of its members in Paris on May 20-25. It is expected to give the United States a mad cow disease "controlled risk" classification that technically allows the country to export beef without limitations, reports Yonhap News..."
      [Edited from:

      *04: Bird Flu News
      STUDY: FLU OUTBREAK IN U.S. COULD SPARK RECESSION: (03/23/07): "A severe flu pandemic "would almost certainly lead to a major economic recession," according to a new report from a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization. The report, titled "Pandemic Flu and the Potential for U.S. Economic Recession," projected that a pandemic would kill 2.25 million people and force 87.75 million people to miss work for three weeks That could cause the U.S. gross domestic product to drop more than 5.5 percent, resulting in an economic loss of $683 billion. "The U.S. is not prepared to face an economic shock of this magnitude," said Jeff Levi, executive director of the Trust for America's Health, which issued the report. "While important government preparedness efforts focusing mainly on medical and public health strategies are under way, efforts to prepare for the possible economic ramifications have been seriously inadequate. Stepping up pandemic preparedness is vital to our national and economic security..." Health experts say another flu pandemic is inevitable. They worry most about the possibility that the highly pathological H5N1 strain of bird flu could mutate, gaining the ability to spread easily from person to person..."

      [Edited from:

      BANGLADESH FARM WORKERS PROTEST CULLING OF POULTRY: (03/24/07): "Workers at a state-run poultry farm near the Bangladesh capital protested on Saturday culling of chickens infected by the H5N1 virus, forcing authorities to call in the army to carry out the slaughter. The farm at Jirani Bazar, 30 km north of Dhaka, is one of six where the avian flu was detected in the past few days, prompting authorities to order mass culling to stop the disease spreading across the densely populated nation. But employees opposed the measure, saying their livelihood was at threat. "We cannot let this burning to go ahead," said Jannatul Ferdous. "If the birds go, we will starve to death," she said... Nearly 38,000 poultry birds have been culled in the six infected farms over the last few days after about 12,000 had died from the disease, officials from the livestock ministry said..."

      [Edited from:

      ANOTHER AVIAN FLU DEATH IN INDONESIA: (04/07/07): "Indonesia's human death toll from bird flu has reached 74 and it must strengthen the fight against the virus after a flood of fatalities, the country's government said Friday. There have been 74 deaths from 94 confirmed human infections, a statement from the National Committee for Avian Influenza Control and Pandemic Preparedness said, pushing up each number by one, but providing no further details about the updated tolls... The H5N1 virus has spurred the slaughter of millions of birds across Asia since late 2003, and caused the deaths of over 170 people worldwide..."

      [Edited from:

      BANGLADESH SAYS BIRD FLU SPREADING: (04/11/07): "Bird flu is spreading among poultry in Bangladesh despite persistent efforts by veterinary and health personnel to contain it, fisheries and livestock ministry officials said on Wednesday... Mohammad Abdul Motalib, senior official of the livestock department, said the H5N1 virus spread despite a struggle by hundreds of veterinary and health officials to hold it in check... Nearly 77,000 chickens have been culled so far from 30 farms since the outbreak of avian flu was confirmed simultaneously in six farms at Savar near Dhaka on March 22... Nearly 600 workers at the infected farms have been given a local version of the Tamiflu anti-viral drug as a precaution, Health Ministry officials said... Bangladesh has 125,000 small and large poultry firms producing 250 million broilers and six billion eggs annually. About four million Bangladeshis are directly or indirectly associated with poultry farming."

      [Edited from:

      "BIRD FLU" GENOME STUDY SHOWS NEW STRAINS, WESTERN SPREAD: (04/16/07): "A team of researchers report the first ever large-scale sequencing of western genomes of the deadly avian influenza virus, H5N1, that confirms not only that the virus has very recently spread west from Asia, but that two of the new western strains have already independently combined, or "reassorted," to create a new strain. In a paper in the May issue of Emerging Infectious Diseases, an international team of researchers report the first ever large-scale sequencing of western genomes of the deadly avian influenza virus, H5N1. Their study of 36 genomes of the virus collected from wild birds in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMA), and Vietnam confirms not only that the virus has very recently spread west from Asia, but that two of the new western strains have already independently combined, or "reassorted," to create a new strain... The broad dispersal of the different forms of the virus throughout the different countries over a relatively short period of time points to the possibility of human movement, rather than wild birds as the reason for the quick spread of the H5N1."

      [Read the entire paper:

      [Very edited from:

      TURKEYS WITH AVIAN FLU KILLED WITH FIREFIGHTING FOAM IN WEST VIRGINIA: (04/17/07): "On April 1, 2007, a University of Delaware researcher named George Malone was asked to exterminate thousands of turkeys using firefighting foam on a farm in West Virginia. The reason given was that the birds were infected with the highly pathogenic avian influenza virus, H5N2. According to an article in Lancaster Farming (04/12/07), a total of 15,000 turkeys confined in four different houses were subsequently exterminated with the foam... In November 2006, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) approved firefighting foam to kill chickens and turkeys en masse in cases of infectious disease outbreaks, despite severe criticism of the method. Poultry scientist, Dr. Ian Duncan, of the University of Guelph, in Ontario, called the foam "a horribly inhumane way to kill birds. You can't tell if they are suffering or vocalizing because they are covered up."..."

      [For more information visit:

      [Very edited from:

      PANDEMIC QUESTION 'WHEN,' NOT 'IF': (04/23/07): "Warning that the U.S. is "overdue and unprepared" for a flu pandemic, disaster response organizations are being advised to prepare now much the same way they would for any major disaster. "Just as communities plan and prepare for mitigating the effects of severe natural disasters like hurricanes, they should plan and prepare for mitigating the effects of a severe pandemic," said Dr. Scott Santibanez of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "We do think it's a time to prepare," he told attendees at the 15th annual National Voluntary Organizations in Disaster conference here. "It's not a time to panic, but it is a time to be preparing... We don't know when the next pandemic is going to be. We don't know how many people it's going to affect. And we don't know if it's going to be the H5N1 bird flu that you've heard about..."

      [Very edited from the article with some good resources and ideas at:

      HUMAN BIRD FLU DEATHS REPORTED IN EGYPT, CAMBODIA: (04/23/07): "The World Health Organization (WHO) has confirmed two new human cases of the highly pathogenic H5N1 strain of avian influenza in Egypt and another case in Cambodia - the first to be confirmed in that country in 2007. The Cambodian Ministry of Health said the 13-year-old girl, from Ponhea Kreak district in Kampong Cham province, developed symptoms April 2, was hospitalized the next day and died April 5. Samples from the girl tested positive for H5N1 at the Pasteur Institute in Phnom Penh..."

      [Very edited from:

      'SUPERMAP' OF AVIAN FLU YIELDS NEW INFO ON SOURCE AND SPREAD: (04/30/07): "Scientists here have designed a new, interactive map of the spread of the avian flu virus (H5N1) that for the first time incorporates genetic, geographic and evolutionary information that may help predict where the next outbreak of the virus is likely to occur. In the process, they also tested hypotheses about the nature of specific strains of the virus that appear to be heading westward and have the ability to infect humans... A team of biomedical experts, led by Daniel Janies, an assistant professor in the department of biomedical informatics at Ohio State University, used special software to create an evolutionary tree of the virus's mutations. They used Keyhole Markup Language in Google Earth to project the tree onto the globe and then chose colors and symbols to indicate different hosts that carry the virus and where they live. TimeSpan, another function in Google Earth, allowed them to animate the spread of the virus over the past decade... The study appears online this week in the April issue of Systematic Biology..."

      [Very edited from:

      [Video of Google Avian Flu map project:

      [Other work on avian flu maps:

      CHAN: BIRD FLU HUGE GLOBAL HEALTH THREAT: (05/17/07): "The U.N. health chief on Wednesday harshly criticized countries that do not share their H5N1 virus samples, accusing them of crippling the world in the fight against a possible flu pandemic. "If you do not share the virus with us ... I would fail you," said Dr. Margaret Chan, Director-General of the World Health Organization, in a speech to the agency's 193 member countries. Without H5N1 samples from affected countries, Chan said that "you are tying my hands, you're muffling my ears, you're blinding my eyes."... "I need the virus to track new resistance patterns so that your investment in antivirals does not go down the drain," Chan said..."

      [Edited from:

      CHINA CONFIRMS BIRD FLU OUTBREAK: (05/19/07): "China has confirmed a new outbreak of the deadly H5N1 strain of the bird flu virus in the central province of Hunan, state media has reported. More than 11,000 poultry died of the virus in Shijiping village near Yiyang city, the Agriculture Ministry said. Some 53,000 birds have since been culled and officials say that the outbreak is now under control... A total of 15 people have died in China from the H5N1 virus and millions of birds have been culled. Officials are working to vaccinate billions of domestic poultry by the end of May in preparation for the northward migration of wild birds in the summer, Xinhua news agency has said..."

      [Edited from:

      *05: Pet Food, Melamine, Chickens, Swine, & What's in the Stuff
      PET OWNERS ORGANIZE TO PUT CONGRESS ON A SHORT LEASH: (04/15/07): "...Hoeflein describes her group, PNV2 [Pets Need a Voice Too], as being in its infant stage, but representing a collective group of average citizens directly affected by the tainted pet food event either through the loss of a beloved pet, the illness of a pet or the overall concern for the quality of products purchased with a blinding degree of faith by consumers. But make no mistake, she intends to bring about some changes... ConsumerAffairs.com has talked to scores of grieving pet owners and received hundreds of written complaints. The Web site Petconnection.com, says it's received 4,069 reports of deceased pets in the wake of the recall. Of that number, 2,099 are cats and 1,970 are dogs. The Web site also says it's received 12,663 reports of illnesses linked to the recalled pet food, which the FDA says is contaminated with melamine-tainted wheat gluten...."

      [Very very edited from:

      HOGS THAT ATE MELAMINE NOT FIT FOR HUMANS, FDA RULES: (04/27/07): "Up to 6,000 hogs in California , Kansas , New York , North Carolina , Oklahoma , South Carolina, and Utah that ate pet food tainted with industrial chemicals cannot be safely sold to humans, federal authorities said yesterday, and should be euthanized at the farms where they have been held from the market. Several hundred of the swine have already entered the human food supply.... There is nothing in the scientific literature, however, about the effect on humans of consuming melamine and cyanuric acid -- chemicals used to produce plastics and pool cleaners that were illegally added to food ingredients exported from China... Lab tests of pets who ate Menu Food Ltd. products during taste tests and fell ill or died showed melamine in the food , their bodies and their urine ... That led to one of the nation's largest pet food recalls, and since mid-March has resulted in millions of bags, pouches, and cans of food being pulled from American store shelves [60 million+]... The FDA says its testing confirmed that two Chinese suppliers exported tainted food ingredients -- wheat gluten and rice protein concentrate . The agency's working theory is that the vegetable proteins were spiked with nitrogen-rich chemicals to artificially boost their nitrogen levels and selling price..."

      [Very edited from:

      20 MILLION CHICKENS HELD BECAUSE OF FEED: (05/04/07): "Federal officials on Friday placed a hold on 20 million chickens raised for market in several states because their feed was mixed with pet food containing an industrial chemical. Three government agencies - the Agriculture Department, the Food and Drug Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency - are overseeing a risk assessment to determine whether the chickens would pose a threat to human health if eaten, USDA spokesman Keith Williams said. The assessment may be completed as early as Monday.

      The 20 million chickens represent a tiny fraction of the 9 billion chickens raised each year in the United States. Meat from the birds can't go into commercial use without the USDA's inspection seal, which is being withheld until the risk assessment is completed, Williams said.... Investigators found last week that about 5 percent of feed used at some smaller chicken production operations came from pet food tainted with the chemical melamine, Williams said...Since March 16, more than 100 brands of pet food have been recalled because they were contaminated with melamine. An unknown number of dogs and cats have been sickened or died after eating pet food tainted with the chemical. The Agriculture Department's Food Safety and Inspection Service said Thursday that no evidence indicated any harm to humans from chicken or pork that had entered the market after having eaten melamine-contaminated feed..."

      [Very edited from:

      USDA CLEARS SWINE FOR PROCESSING: (05/15/07): "The U.S. Department of Agriculture has released swine being held on farms because of possible contamination and approved the animals for processing. USDA officials said testing confirmed meat from swine fed rations supplemented with pet food scraps containing melamine and related compounds is safe for human consumption. Melamine, a chemical used in manufacturing plastics and fertilizer, has led to recent pet food recalls and has killed possibly thousands of dogs and cats across the nation.... There were approximately 56,000 swine that were held on farms in California, the Carolinas, New York, Kansas, Utah and Illinois."

      [Edited from:

      FOOD PETS DIE FOR: [Warning: graphic & disturbing. What's "normally" in pet food. From the book, "Food Pets Die For: Shocking Facts About Pet Food:"

      [Links to information about making your own pet food and related are in the Quick Bytes section below]

      *06: Veg Video Watch
      [Drs. McDougall, Esselstyn, & Fuhrman discuss the "best" diet:

      [Presidential Candidate (and vegan) Dennis Kucinich and Bill Mahr:

      [Robert Cohen (aka "The NotMilkMan") on Hard Copy discussing "Milk: The Deadly Poison":

      [The World's First Bionic Burger:

      *07: Beef & Fertility, Vegan vs Omnivore Blood, Fat/Salt & the Heart
      BLOOD ANALYSIS: VEGANS vs. OMNIVORES: (03/27/07): "A study in the Archives of Brazilian Cardiology (Arq Bras Cardiol. 2007 Jan;88(1):35-9) measured blood serum levels of cholesterol and triglycerides in meat eaters, vegetarians, and vegans. The researchers found "significant differences" in total cholesterol and triglyceride levels, writing: Higher levels were reported by omnivores, with decreased levels for vegetarians as animal products were restricted, with lowest levels having been reported by vegans...."

      [PDF of study at:

      [Edited from Robert Cohen's excellent column at:

      HIGH-FAT FAST-FOOD MEALS AFFECT HEART BEAT & BLOOD PRESSURE: (04/2007): "A new study from the Journal of Nutrition finds that a single fatty meal can cause the heart to beat harder and blood pressure to rise. Researchers at the University of Calgary analyzed the affects of either a high-fat fast-food meal (42 grams of fat) or a meal with no more than 1.3 grams of fat among 30 healthy participants. The results showed that when both groups were subjected to a series of standard stress tests, those who ate the high-fat meal saw their blood pressure go up 1.25 to 1.5 times higher than the participants who ate the low-fat meal..."

      [Edited from:

      [Study abstract at:

      CUT YOUR SALT USE AND CUT YOUR RISK OF HEART DISEASE: (04/19/07): "Reducing the amount of salt in your diet can lower your risk of developing heart disease by 25 percent and the risk of dying from heart disease by 20 percent, researchers report. "Dietary intake of sodium among Americans is excessively high," said lead researcher Nancy Cook, an associate professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School. "Our study suggests that reducing the level of salt in the diet would lead to a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease." Sodium is known to affect blood pressure levels, particularly among people with high blood pressure, Cook said. "Among hypertensive individuals, lowering sodium is pretty well established to lower blood pressure," she said. "Now it looks like reducing sodium also has an effect on cardiovascular disease."

      ...The first trial consisted of 744 people; the second trial had 2,382 participants. People in both trials reduced their salt intake by about 25 percent to 35 percent. Each trial also included a control group that didn't reduce salt intake. The researchers found that those who reduced their salt intake were 25 percent less likely to develop cardiovascular disease 10 to 15 years after the trials ended. There was also a 20 percent lower death rate from cardiovascular disease among those who cut their salt consumption... "A prudent sodium intake is best achieved by avoiding salted, salt-cured and salt-smoked foods such as lunch meat, hot dogs, ham, olives, pickles and regular salted canned foods, and other prepared foods, which often use more salt than home-made equivalents," Gerbstadt advised..."

      [Cite: BMJ 2007;334:885, doi:10.1136/bmj.39147.604896.55

      [Study Abstract:

      [Very edited from:

      FERTILITY PROBLEMS SEEN FOR SONS OF BEEF-EATING WOMEN: (03/28/07): "Sons born to women who ate a lot of beef during their pregnancy have a 25 percent below-normal sperm count and three times the normal risk of fertility problems, researchers reported Tuesday. The problem may be due to anabolic steroids used in the United States to fatten the cattle, Shanna Swan of the University of Rochester Medical Center reported in the journal Human Reproduction. It could also be due to pesticides and other environmental contaminants, she said. If the sperm deficit is related to the hormones in beef, Swan's findings may be "just the tip of the iceberg," wrote biologist Frederick vom Saal of the University of Missouri in an editorial accompanying the paper. In daughters of the beef-eaters, those same hormones could alter the incidence of polycystic ovarian syndrome, the age of puberty and the postnatal growth rate, he said..."

      [Edited from:

      *08: Events of Note
      Veg Fest 2007:


      *09: Howard's Schedule
      JUL 19 - 23: Los Angeles, CA > AR2007
      JUL 25 -29: Johnstown, PA > Summerfest 2007

      SEP 15: Albany, NY > NY Capital Region's Vegetarian Expo.

      [More information/embedded links for contact information at:

      *10: Quick Bytes
      [Elizabeth Kucinich: "Essex girl fills White House race with lurve:"

      ["The Hippies Were Right!:"

      ["Organic food sales up 22%, hit $17 billion in 2006:"

      ["Switch to Organic Crops Could Help Poor:"

      [SUPERB CSA (community supported agriculture) interactive resource:"

      ["Animal rights suspects targeted:"

      ["Paw Prints: Congress passes legislation to help end dog and cock fighting:"

      ["No ORGANIC Bee losses:"

      [Compassionate Cooking Podcast:

      ["Organic Consumers: Read, Blog & Meet-up!:"

      [The Mad Cowboy Newsletter Editor's Vegan Blog:

      [Podcasts, radio:

      ["The FatFreeVegan Blog:"

      ["The Vegan Lunch Box Blog (PETA & Bloggy Award-winning:"

      [Bryanna Clark Grogan's Blog:

      ["Raw Vegan Blog and Podcasts:"

      ["Recommended Blogs & Websites for Food & Farming Information:"

      ["Resolving The Worsening Crisis At The FDA:"

      ["Eat Veggies, Help World:"

      ["A vegan diet for a stress-free life:"

      ["Go green with collards:"

      ["Fruits and Vegetables Fight Off Cancer:"

      ["Eating Bacon And Hot Dogs Linked To Higher Risk Of Lung Disease:"

      ["Vegan franchises:"

      ["Bottled Water Pricey in More Ways than One:"

      ["The China Experiment" (in environmental issues... great article):

      ["Pollution 'hits China's farmland':"

      [Farmed Animal Net:

      [VegNews Monthly Newsletter:

      [FARMUSA's MeatOut Monday Newsletter:

      [PCRM Membership News and Info:
      Send e-mail to: membership@...

      [Vegetarians In Paradise Newsletter:

      [International Vegetarian Union Newsletter:

      ["In a Vegetarian Kitchen: (Nava Atlas):"

      ["International Organization for Animal Protection:"


      [PETA's resources for Pet Food Issues+

      [Recipes, products, etc.:

      [Farm Sanctuary: More recipes, products, issues, advice:

      [Over 10,000 veg'n recipe links:

      ["Over 1,000 International (regional) Vegetarian Recipes:"

      [PCRM Recipe Archives:

      [Almost 2,000 searchable fat-free veg'n recipes:

      [Awardwinning searchable veg'n recipe database:

      [Constantly wonderful site of vegan recipes:

      *11: Closing Thoughts

      "The doctors, nutritionists, and scientists on our side --- and they are plentiful --- are perhaps our greatest resource. They need to do all they can to generate more scientific studies of the vegan diet, and to bring those facts to light. We need their help to challenge all the bogus claims on behalf of animal products that find their way into the mainstream media --- and to challenge the media outlets themselves for their own complicity in the nutritional confusion that abounds."

      --- Howard Lyman, p. 83 in "No More Bull!"

      Mark Sutton, Webmaster@... http://www.madcowboy.com
      To subscribe, send a blank e-mail to: Mad_Cowboy-subscribe@yahoogroups.com
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