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Food scientists are shedding light on items loaded with toxins and chemicals–and simple swaps for a cleaner diet and supersized health.

Clean eating means choosing fruits, vegetables, and meats that are raised, grown, and sold with minimal processing. Often they’re organic, and rarely (if ever) should they contain additives. But in some cases, the methods of today’s food producers are neither clean nor sustainable. The result is damage to our health, the environment, or both. So we decided to take a fresh look at food through the eyes of the people who spend their lives uncovering what’s safe–or not–to eat. We asked them a simple question: “What foods do you avoid?” Their answers don’t necessarily make up a “banned foods” list. But reaching for the suggested alternatives might bring you better health–and peace of mind.

1. The Endocrinologist Won’t Eat: Canned Tomatoes
Fredrick Vom Saal, is an endocrinologist at the Univ. of Missouri who studies bisphenol-A.

The problem: The resin linings of tin cans contain bisphenol-A, a synthetic estrogen that has been linked to ailments ranging from reproductive problems to heart disease, diabetes, and obesity. Unfortunately, acidity (a prominent characteristic of tomatoes) causes BPA to leach into your food. Studies show that the BPA in most people’s body exceeds the amount that suppresses sperm production or causes chromosomal damage to the eggs of animals. “You can get 50 mcg of BPA per liter out of a tomato can, and that’s a level that is going to impact people, particularly the young,” says vom Saal. “I won’t go near canned tomatoes.”

The solution: Choose tomatoes in glass bottles (which do not need resin linings), such as the brands Bionaturae and Coluccio. You can also get several types in Tetra Pak boxes, like Trader Joe’s and Pomi.

Budget tip: If your recipe allows, substitute bottled pasta sauce for canned tomatoes. Look for pasta sauces with low sodium and few added ingredients, or you may have to adjust the recipe.

2. The Farmer Won’t Eat: Corn-Fed Beef
Joel Salatin is co-owner of Polyface Farms and author of half a dozen books on sustainable farming.

The problem: Cattle evolved to eat grass, not grains. But farmers today feed their animals corn and soybeans, which fatten up the animals faster for slaughter. But more money for cattle farmers (and lower prices at the grocery store) means a lot less nutrition for us. A recent comprehensive study conducted by the USDA and researchers from Clemson University found that compared with corn-fed beef, grass-fed beef is higher in beta-carotene, vitamin E, omega-3s, conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), calcium, magnesium, and potassium; lower in inflammatory omega-6s; and lower in saturated fats that have been linked to heart disease. “We need to respect the fact that cows are herbivores, and that does not mean feeding them corn and chicken manure,” says Salatin.

The solution: Buy grass-fed beef, which can be found at specialty grocers, farmers’ markets, and nationally at Whole Foods. It’s usually labeled because it demands a premium, but if you don’t see it, ask your butcher.

Budget tip: Cuts on the bone are cheaper because processors charge extra for deboning. You can also buy direct from a local farmer, which can be as cheap as $5 per pound. To find a farmer near you, search

3. The Toxicologist Won’t Eat: Microwave Popcorn
Olga Naidenko, is a senior scientist for the Environmental Working Group.

The problem: Chemicals, including perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), in the lining of the bag, are part of a class of compounds that may be linked to infertility in humans, according to a recent study from UCLA. In animal testing, the chemicals cause liver, testicular, and pancreatic cancer. Studies show that microwaving causes the chemicals to vaporize–and migrate into your popcorn. “They stay in your body for years and accumulate there,” says Naidenko, which is why researchers worry that levels in humans could approach the amounts causing cancers in laboratory animals. DuPont and other manufacturers have promised to phase out PFOA by 2015 under a voluntary EPA plan, but millions of bags of popcorn will be sold between now and then.

The solution: Pop natural kernels the old-fashioned way: in a skillet. For flavorings, you can add real butter or dried seasonings, such as dillweed, vegetable flakes, or soup mix.

Budget tip: Popping your own popcorn is dirt cheap

4. The Farm Director Won’t Eat: Nonorganic Potatoes
Jeffrey Moyer is the chair of the National Organic Standards Board.

The problem: Root vegetables absorb herbicides, pesticides, and fungicides that wind up in soil. In the case of potatoes–the nation’s most popular vegetable–they’re treated with fungicides during the growing season, then sprayed with herbicides to kill off the fibrous vines before harvesting. After they’re dug up, the potatoes are treated yet again to prevent them from sprouting. “Try this experiment: Buy a conventional potato in a store, and try to get it to sprout. It won’t,” says Moyer, who is also farm director of the Rodale Institute (also owned by Rodale Inc., the publisher of Prevention). “I’ve talked with potato growers who say point-blank they would never eat the potatoes they sell. They have separate plots where they grow potatoes for themselves without all the chemicals.”

The solution: Buy organic potatoes. Washing isn’t good enough if you’re trying to remove chemicals that have been absorbed into the flesh.

Budget tip: Organic potatoes are only $1 to $2 a pound, slightly more expensive than conventional spuds.

5. The Fisheries Expert Won’t Eat: Farmed Salmon
Dr. David Carpenter, director of the Institute for Health and the Environment at the University at Albany, published a major study in the journal Science on contamination in fish.

The problem: Nature didn’t intend for salmon to be crammed into pens and fed soy, poultry litter, and hydrolyzed chicken feathers. As a result, farmed salmon is lower in vitamin D and higher in contaminants, including carcinogens, PCBs, brominated flame retardants, and pesticides such as dioxin and DDT. According to Carpenter, the most contaminated fish come from Northern Europe, which can be found on American menus. “You could eat one of these salmon dinners every 5 months without increasing your risk of cancer,” says Carpenter, whose 2004 fish contamination study got broad media attention. “It’s that bad.” Preliminary science has also linked DDT to diabetes and obesity, but some nutritionists believe the benefits of omega-3s outweigh the risks. There is also concern about the high level of antibiotics and pesticides used to treat these fish. When you eat farmed salmon, you get dosed with the same drugs and chemicals.

The solution: Switch to wild-caught Alaska salmon. If the package says fresh Atlantic, it’s farmed. There are no commercial fisheries left for wild Atlantic salmon.

Budget tip: Canned salmon, almost exclusively from wild catch, can be found for as little as $3 a can.

6. The Cancer Researcher Won’t Drink: Milk Produced With Artificial Hormones
Rick North is project director of the Campaign for Safe Food at the Oregon Physicians for Social Responsibility and former CEO of the Oregon division of the American Cancer Society.

The problem: Milk producers treat their dairy cattle with recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH or rBST, as it is also known) to boost milk production. But rBGH also increases udder infections and even pus in the milk. It also leads to higher levels of a hormone called insulin-like growth factor in milk. In people, high levels of IGF-1 may contribute to breast, prostate, and colon cancers. “When the government approved rBGH, it was thought that IGF-1 from milk would be broken down in the human digestive tract,” says North. As it turns out, the casein in milk protects most of it, according to several independent studies. “There’s not 100 percent proof that this is increasing cancer in humans,” admits North. “However, it’s banned in most industrialized countries.”

The solution: Check labels for rBGH-free, rBST-free, produced without artificial hormones, or organic milk. These phrases indicate rBGH-free products.

Budget tip: Try Wal-Mart’s Great Value label, which does not use rBGH.

7. The Organic-Foods Expert Won’t Eat: Conventional Apples
Mark Kastel, a former executive for agribusiness, is codirector of the Cornucopia Institute, a farm-policy research group that supports organic foods.

The problem: If fall fruits held a “most doused in pesticides contest,” apples would win. Why? They are individually grafted (descended from a single tree) so that each variety maintains its distinctive flavor. As such, apples don’t develop resistance to pests and are sprayed frequently. The industry maintains that these residues are not harmful. But Kastel counters that it’s just common sense to minimize exposure by avoiding the most doused produce, like apples. “Farm workers have higher rates of many cancers,” he says. And increasing numbers of studies are starting to link a higher body burden of pesticides (from all sources) with Parkinson’s disease.  

Read More from Fox News..By Prevention Magazine

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We have compiled a list of 63o reported illnesses that the biological Children of Vietnam Veterans are suffering from to try and find common threads. There have been no official claims that anything on this list has been proven to be caused by Agent Orange/Dioxin unless otherwise noted in the information below. Other reports indicate that there are up to 30 years of illnesses and conditions being collected that we suffer from as the second generation. While many of us are born with these problems, our members that participated in this list are generally between the ages of 20-45 both male and female, often with no prior family history. If you are suffering from any illness not listed, please email us at COVVHA@GMAIL.COM or fill out the comment section on our “Contact Us” page. This list has been updated as of July 24, 2012

Abnormal Cervical Bleeding
Abnormal growth between the ovaries
Abnormal Pap Smears
Abnormal Periods
Abnormal Rectal Bleeding
Achy Body
Acid Reflux
Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia
Addiction (cigarettes)
Addiction(other than cigs/alcohol, non drug)
Addison’s Disease
Adult Acne
Alopecia Areata
Anal Squamous Cell Carcinoma-Basiloid Type
Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma
Anemia SC (as a small child when I had pneumonia)
Anger Issues
Ankylosing spondylitis
Annual decrease in (night) vision
Aortic Pulmonary Regurgitation
Arachnoid Cyst in Brain Space
Arnold Chiari Malformation
Arterial Vienous Malformation (AVM)
Arthritis: Inflammatory, of the SI Joint, Rhumatoid, Juvenile
Asperger’s Syndrome
Atrial Fibrillation
Autoimmune Disease (Unknown Etiology)
Autonomic Neuropathy
Bacterial Infections
Back Pain
Balance Problems
Bell’s Palsy (now-resolved)
Berger’s Disease (Kidney Disease)
Benign Cyst (armpit)
Benign Multinodular Goiter
Benign Oral Cysts
Benign tumor on thryoid/ near total thyroidectomy surgery
Bicorneate Uterus
Bicuspid Aorta Heart Valve
Bicuspid Valve Prolapse
Bilateral Baker’s Cyst
Bilateral Uterus
Bipartide Patellas
Bipolar Disorder
Bladder infections/ UTI’s
Bladder Lift
Bleeding Issues
Blood in Urine (undefined)
Blood Vessel Issues
Bone Cancer
Bones Spurs/Problems (Undefined)
Bones Missing at Birth
Borderline High Blood Pressure
Borderline Diabetic
Borderline Schizophrenia
Born Blind
Born Deaf
Bowel Deformity/Issues
Brain Issues (Water on the brain, etc)
Brain (calcification & an enlarged Penvascular space)
Brain Lesions, Aneurisms, Tumors, Surgery
Brain Stem Abnormalities(Too small)
Brain Tumors
Breathing Problems (undefined)
Bronchitis/Bronchial Spasms
Calcium Deficiency
Calluses on vocal Chords-Faulty “flap” stomach acid caused
Cardiac Arrhythmia
Cardiac Deformity
Cardio Sarcoma
Carpel Tunnel
Caudal Regression
Cava Perthes
Celiac Disease
Cellulitis Infections
Central Nervous System Disorder
Cerebellum Issues (Undefined)
Cerebra Aneurysm
Cerebral Palsy
Cervical Cancer
Cervical Dysplasia/Incompetency
Cervical Infections
Chiari Malformation (Assoc. with Spina Bifida)
Chemical Sensitivity
Chest Wall Pain/ Breast Pain
Childhood bedwetting
Childhood Extreme Shyness
Choristoma ( tumor in the ear)
Chromosome Abnormalities
Chronic (Asthmatic) Bronchitis
Chronic Candida and Other Female Reproductive Organ Infections
Chronic Childhood Ear Infections
Chronic Cold/Flu
Chronic Constipation
Chronic Costochondritits
Chronic ENT issues resulting in adenoidectomy, tonsillectomy and ear tubes
Chronic Fatigue And Immune Deficiency Syndrome (CFAIDS)
Chonic Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyneuropathy (CIDP)
Chronic Insomnia
Chronic Kidney Disease
Chronic Knee Dysplasia
Chronic Migraines
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
Chronic Pneumonia (Childhood/Recurring)
Chronic Sinusitis
Chronic Urinary tract infections
Chronic Urinary Tract Infections
Chronic Venous Insufficiency (CVI), Severe
Cleft Palate, Lips
Clotting Disorders
Club Foot (Talipes equinovarus )
Cold Hands and Feet
Collapsed Vertebrae
Colon Issues
Complete Hysterectomy: Age 25, Age 31, Age 37,Age 36
Complete Pelvic Floor Collapse
Compromised Immune System
Compulsive Skin Picking
Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia
Congenital Anosenia (Born without the ability to smile)
Congenital Heart Blockage
Congenital Hips
Congenital Hypertension
Congenital Scoliosis
Cognitive Issues
Connective Tissue Disorder
Conversion Disorder
Cranial Synthesis
Crohn’s Disease
Crossed Eyes (Newborn)
Cushing’s Syndrome
Cystic Acne
Cystic Fibrosis
Cysts: Arm, Brain, Hand, Leg, Shoulder Blade, Thyroid, Arm, Ovaries & Wrists.
Daily Headaches
Debilitating Muscle Spasms
Deep Venous Thrombosis (DVT)
Deformed Extermities/Digits
Deformed Sinuses
Deformity Chest/Brest
Deformity Shoulder/Muscles
Degenerative Disc/Bone Disease
Degenerative Ligament Tissue
Degenerative Joint Disease
Dental Problems
Depression (Major, Clinical, Severe)
Developmental Delay
Deviated Septum
Diagonal earlobe Crease
Digestive Issues
Disc Desiccation
Dissociative Disorder
Dizzy Spells
Double Cervix
Double Hernia at Birth
Double Ureter
Double Uterus/Cervix
Double Uvula
Droop Eye (Ptosis)
Drug Abuse
Duane Syndrome
Ear Infections, Problems, Surgeries, Tubes
Ectopic Pregnancy
Electrolyte Abnormalities
Elevated Heart Rate
Emotional Problems
Endocrine Disorders
Endometrial Cancer
Endometrial Hyperplasia
Enlarged Liver (Cause Unknown)
Excessive Sweating
Extra body parts (Organs)
Eye Problems (Undefined)
Facet Joint Syndrome
Facial Aplasia
Factor Z Leiden
Familial Tremor
Fatty Deposits on Liver
Felty’s Syndrome
Fever (Undefined)
Fever Seizures
Fibrocystic Breast Disease
Fibroid Cysts in Breast
Focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS)
Food Allergies
Follicular Lymphoma/Large B Cell Lymphoma
Foot Deformity, Issues, Burning
Fragile X Syndrome
Fused Digits
Fused Vertebrae in Neck
Gall Bladder Disease
Ganglion Cyst
Gastrointestinal Problems
Gastro Esophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)
Gene Mutation
Gluten Intolerance
Goldenhar Syndrome
Grand Mal Seizures
Grave’s Disease
Growth Hormone Deficiency (GHD)
Growths/Lumps on Skull
HAE – Hereditary Angioedema (still being tested for verification)
HAE – Hereditary Angioedema Type 3
Hair Loss
Hairy Cell Leukemia
Hashimoto’s auto-immune thyroid disease
Head Sores
Heat Intolerance
Hearing Loss/Deafness
Heart Attack
Heart Disease
Heart Failure
Heart Problems/Surgery (Undefined)
Heart Murmur (as a child) Heart Palpatations
Heel Spur
Hereditary (atypical) heochromatosis
Hereditary Hemorrhagic Telangiectasia (HHT)
Herniated Discs
High Blood Pressure
High Cholesterol
High Pulse Rate
Hip Deformity, Pain, Surgery (Undefined)
Hip Dysplasia
Hip Pain (Undefined)
Hip Replacement
Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
Hormone Issues/Replacement
Hidradenitis suppurativa
Hydrococle Hernia
Hylan Membrane
Hyman Issues (Partially Intact)
Hypermobility Issues/ Surgeries
Hypoplastic Heart
Hyoplasia –Entire Right Side
Hypothyroidism (HASHIMOTOS)
Idiopathic Gastroparesis
Idiopathic Intercranial Hypertension (IIH)
Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP) Platelet Disorder
Immune System Issues (Undefined & IVIG Infusions)
Incompetent Cervix
Infertility (SECONDARY)
Insulin Resistance
Interstitial Cystitis (IC)
Intracranial Cyst
Intracranial Hypertension
Involuntary Muscle Spasm (Face) (EYE, LEGSSTOACH,ABDOMEN)
Iron Deficiency
Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Ischemic Heart Disease
Jaw Deformity/Surgery
Joint & Muscle Problems/Pain
Joint Hypermobility Syndrome
Keratosis pilaris
Kidney Disease/Surgery
Kidney Stones, Infection, Cysts
Kienbock’s Disease
Knee Problems/Dysplasia ,Pain, Surgery
Knee Replacement
Lateral Microtia
Lazy Eye (x2)
Learning Disabilities
Legally blind
Leukocytosis with neutrophilia
Lhermitte’s Sign
Lichen Planus
Liponas-(non-cancerous tumors throughout the body)
Liver Disease (Fatty/Undefined)
Liver Inflammation/Other
Liver Lesions
Long QT Syndrome (LQTS)
Loss of Skin Pigment
Loss of Strength in Limbs
Low Blood Count (Red)
Low Blood Pressure
Low Estrogen
Low Potassium
Low Testosterone
Low vitamin D levels…even with sun and supplements
Lumbarization (Extra Vertabrae)
Lung Deformity (3rd Lung)
Lung Disease, Nodules, Tumors, Clots
Lupus of the Skin
Lymphatic Tumors/ Lymphangioma
Lymphoblastic Leukemia
Lymphocytic Thyroditis
Malabsorption of food/drink
Marfan Syndrome
Melanoma (spreading)
Memory Loss
Memory Retention Problems
Meniere’s Disease
Menopause Issues (Early)
Menstrual Cycle Issues
Mental Health Issues
Mental Retardation
Metabolic Syndromes
Methicillin Staphylococcus Resistant Aureus (MSRA)
Methylenetetrahydrofolate Reductase (MTHFR)
Migraine headaches ( Cluster, Basilar, and Hemiplegic Migraines)
Mild Displasia
Missing a whole layer of dermis (skin)
Missing Big Toe
Missing Fingers
Missing Limb (Right Leg, Below the Knee)
Mitral valve prolapsed
Mixed Connective Tissue Disease (MCTD)
Mood Swings
Motor Development (Slow @ Childhood)
Mullerian Aplasia
Multiple Cardiac Arrests
Multiple Sclerosis
Multiple Reoccuring Undiagnosed Oozing Sores
Muscle Spasms, Pain, Numbness, (Undefined)
Musco-Skeletal Problems
Muscular Dystrophy
Myasthenia Gravis
Mycobacterium gordonae
Nasal Cancer
Nasal Polyps
Nausea/Vomiting for no apparent reason.
Neck Pain/ Problems
Nerve Damage
Neuralgia: Face, Feet, Hands, Legs
Neurological Problems (Undefined)
Nevus Sebaceous
Night Blindness
Night Terrors
Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
Numbness (Hands, Feet, Body, Limbs)
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
Oppositional Defiant Disorder
Orthostatic Hypotension
Osteogenesis Imperfecta
Ovarian Cancer
Ovarian Cysts
Overactive Bladder
Pain (Undefined)
Pain in chest, radiating up right side of neck
Palate Problems
Panic Attacks
Para-Thyroid Gland Disfunction
Pars Plantis
Patellar Subluxation (Left Knee)
Pectus Excavatum
Peeling As If Sunburned (Face and body)
Pelvic Bones Not Fused
Pelvic Congestion Syndrome (before hysterectomy)
Pelvic Reconstruction/Issues
Peptic Ulcers
Peripheral Neuropathy
Peripheral Nervous System Disorder
Periventricular Leukomalacia
Personality Disorder
Phantom pains in random places in my body with no apparent cause
Pierre Robin Sequence
Pituitary Gland Dysfunction
Pituitary Issues/Tumors
Planar Spaciatis
Poland Syndrome
Poly Cystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)
Poly Cystic Kidney Disease (PKD)
Polycythemia Vera Without Genetic Factor
Poor Egg Quality
Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS)
Potassium Issues
Pregnancy Complications (Undefined)
Pregnancy, Partial Molar
Premature Babies
Premature Ovarian Failure (POF)
Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder
Primitive Neuro-Ectodermal Tumor (PNET)
Prolapsed Cervix
Prostate Problems/Enlarged
Psoriatic Arthritis
Psoriatic Rheumatoid Arthritis
Pseudo tumor Cerebri
Pseudo Obstruction (Intestinal, Neurological)
PTSD (Primary)
PTSD (Secondary)
Pulmonary Edema
Pulmonary Embolism
Pulmonary Fibrosis/Other (Undefined)
Pulmonary Restriction
Pyloric Stenosis
Rapid Absorption
Rash (Skin, Newborn, Undefined)
Raynaud’s Syndrome
Rectal Prolapse
Rectal Seal Prolapse
Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy Syndrome
Renal Cysts/Calcifications
Renal Failure
Reproductive Problems (Female)
Respiratory Infections/Distress
Restless Leg Syndrome
Retroverted Uterus
Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD)
Sacral Agenesis
Sacral Luburalization
Salpingitis Isthmica Nodosa (SIN)
Sebaceous Cysts (Lumps on the head)
Seizures, Stress
Seizures, Petite Mal
Sensitive Skin
Sensitive to Medication
Sensitive Teeth
Septate Uterus
Severe Chronic Neutropenia
Severe Light Sensitivity
Shingles: Ears, Mouth, Opthamalic, Throat
Short term memory problems
Sinus Tachycardia
Sinus Infections/ Problems
Skin Cancer
Skin Problems/ Deformity
Skin Rashes
Sleep Apnea
Slight Deviated Jaw
Social Problems
Spastic Colon
Speech Problems
Spina Bifida
Spina Bifida Occulta
Spinal Cord Disease/ Tumors
Spinal Deformities
Spinal Deterioration
Spinal Meningitis
Spinal Surgeries/ Pain (Undefined)
Sphincter of Oddi Disorder-
Splentic Cysts
Squamous Papilloma (Benign Polyp in Mouth)
Stenosis of the Spine
Stomach Pains/Problems
Strange Growths
Sturge Weber Syndrome
Subglottal Stenosis
Suicidal Tendencies
Supraventricular Tachycardia (SVT)
Swelling (Undefined)
Swollen Glands
Tachycardia (Unknown, Due to WPW Syndrome)
Temporal Arteritis
Testicle Deformity
Thinning of the hair, top front
Thoracic Outlet Syndrome (TOS)
Throat Tumors
Thyroid Cancer (Hoshimotos)
Thyroid Issues & Cysts (Hyperthyroidism)
Tilted Uterus
Tinnitus (Lifelong)
Tooth Decay (Abnormal)
Tooth Formation Absence (Adult Teeth Never Came In)
Toxic Shock Syndrome
Tracheo-Esophageal Fistula
Tremors/ Ticks
Triple Ureter
Triple X Syndrome
Truncus Arteriosis
Tuberculosis (TB)
Tumor on the parathyroid
Tumors on Liver
Type 1 Diabetes
Type 2 Diabetes
Ulcers, Stomach, Mouth, Nose
Ulcerated Colitis
Undiagnosed Rash (One Side of Body)
Unexplained Numbness
Unexplained Tingling (Right Side Of Body)
Urinary Tract Infections (UTI)/ Issues
Uterine Cancer
Uterine Leiomyosarcoma
Unspecified Immunodeficiency
Uterine Fibroids
Uterine Polyps
Vacterl syndrome
Vaginal Bleeding
Vascular Headaches
Varicose Veins
Vertibrae, Extra/ Missing
Vision Problems
Von Willebrand’s Disease
Vulvodynia (Pain In The Vulva)
Weak Muscles (Left Leg)
Webbed Toes
Weight Loss
Whole Thyroidectomy Surgery
Wolff- Parkinson- White Syndrome
VA has recognized that certain birth defects among Veterans’ children are associated with Veterans’ qualifying service in Vietnam or Korea. Spina bifida (except spina bifida occulta), a defect in the developing fetus that results in incomplete closing of the spine, is associated with Veterans’ exposure to Agent Orange or other herbicides during qualifying service in Vietnam or Korea. Birth defects in children of women Veterans is associated with their military service in Vietnam, but are not related to herbicide exposure. The affected child must have been conceived after the Veteran entered Vietnam or the Korean demilitarized zone during the qualifying service period. CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE

Many Children of Vietnam Veterans (COVVs) and family members of COVVs, contact us with questions about COVV’s health concerns. At this point in time, the government does not recognize that Agent Orange causes birth defects or illnesses in the children (or grandchildren) of male Vietnam Veterans, unless the COVV has Spina Bifida (Only for Children of Vietnam Vets not Grandchildren). This is a tragic denial of the many unexplained medical illnesses and birth defects many Children of Male Vietnam Veterans face. Please, if you or a loved one is suffering from an unexplained birth defect, or illness, you think may be caused by Agent Orange read the information below.
Please file a claim with the Department Of Veterans Affairs as soon as possible. This claim will be denied, but we have to start identifying ourselves with the VA.
You can find all mentioned forms on
Please follow the instructions below:
You will need to provide years your Father was in Vietnam and his Social Security number.
If your father has passed away, and his death was linked to Agent Orange exposure, state that.
1. Application for benefits (be sure to keep copies for your records)
A. Complete claim form no. 21-03042
B. Complete Statement of support form no. 21-4138 used to add additional information. Add anything you feel is necessary in understanding your claim.
Send these forms in as soon as possible!
Please be advised your claim will be denied. It will state, “There is no record of your mother serving in Vietnam or Korea. There is no proof of spina bifida.” This is their standard answer to all of the children of male Vietnam Veterans (unless you have Spina Bifida, then you are eligible for benefits).
3. Filing an appeal
A. Your next step is to file an appeal
1. Complete: Appeal Form VA9
2. Complete: Release of Medical Information Form 21-4142
a. The VA most likely will not attempt to acquire your records
4. Prepare for the hearing
A. Wait for your hearing Date
B. Gather all your medical records that support your claim
5. The Hearing
A. Take any witnesses that can support your claim
B. Contact your Senator or Congressman and senator, asking them to attend the hearing or to send a representative.

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Moms and food activists have been fighting genetically modified foods for years. Now, they have a new ally.

Vietnam Veterans of America (VVA) sent a letter to President Obama just before Memorial Day asking for his assistance in delaying approval of a new breed of corn that’s genetically modified to resist heavy applications of the herbicide 2,4-D, one of the two active ingredients in the infamous Vietnam-era defoliant Agent Orange.

The corn and 2,4-D are both being manufactured by Dow Agro Science, which has named its new corn “Enlist,” a name the veterans said in the letter was “a slap at all Vietnam veterans.” Multinational seed company Monsanto also manufactures 2,4-D.

Most of the health problems caused by Agent Orange during the Vietnam War have been attributed to unintended dioxin contamination of the two active ingredients, 2,4-D and 2,4,5-T. Dioxin builds up in the fatty tissue of humans and animals and can cause damage for years after exposure. The government continues to add to the known health conditions related to Agent Orange’s dioxin poisoning, but currently they include diabetes, neuropathy, Parkinson’s disease, heart disease, liver dysfunction, numerous cancers, and birth defects in the children of exposed soldiers and Vietnam residents. Studies in recent years have found that 2,4-D is just as likely to be contaminated with dioxin when used alone as it was when used in combination with 2,4,5-T.

Adding to that danger, 2,4-D itself has been linked to non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, cell damage, hormonal disruption, and reproductive problems, according to the nonprofit Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), which petitioned the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) earlier this year in an effort to ban the substance permanently. The EPA denied the NRDC’s petition.

“Although there is a lot that science has learned about the effects of dioxin on the human organism, there is still a lot that science has yet to learn,” writes VVA. “Now, Dow and Monsanto wish to release genetically modified corn that has increased resistance to 2,4-D. What will this mean to Vietnam vets, who have already been exposed to this chemical through our military service? To our progeny?”

The group’s letter went on to state that the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) conclusion that 2,4-D–resistant corn would have no “significant” impact on the environment was inaccurate and “raises more questions than it answers.” The vets are asking President Obama to push for more research by independent scientists, not those affiliated with Dow Agro Sciences.

“We are not calling for a complete ban of this new product at this time,” the group writes. “We are simply not willing to be lied to or withheld information from again. Vietnam veterans were lied to about our exposure to chemicals which claimed many lives long after our troops left Southeast Asia.”

The VVA isn’t alone in its attempts to get Obama’s attention. Children of Vietnam Veterans Health Alliance, another group made up of veterans’ children who were impacted by dioxin poisoning and Agent Orange, is endorsing the California ballot initiative that would require labeling of genetically modified ingredients. That initiative will be voted on in the November 2012 election.

The USDA has closed the public comment period on Dow’s 2,4-D–resistant corn, but the nonprofit Center for Food Safety continues to pressure the EPA to ban 2,4-D altogether. Take a minute to sign the center’s petition and to protect your family from the potential for more toxic pesticide exposure.

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The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced on Friday that they would not ban the use of a controversial chemical used in food packaging, various media outlets have reported.

At least trace amounts of BPA, which Bloomberg said is created by combining phenol and acetone, are present in the systems of a reported 90% of all US citizens. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) report that the substance could have a negative impact on the brains and prostates of fetuses and young children, and Kaskey added that some scientists believe that BPA can cause adverse effects on the reproductive and nervous systems, especially in infants and small children.

“Scientists are still working to determine what effects BPA, which mimics estrogen in the body, has on human health once ingested,” added Bettina Boxall and Eryn Brown of the Los Angeles Times. “They know that… it has been shown to have negative effects in mice, including developmental and reproductive abnormalities, precancerous changes in the prostate and breasts, and other health problems. In epidemiological studies, researchers have reported correlations between BPA levels in people and higher risk of ailments including cardiovascular disease, diabetes and liver problems.”

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