Robyn O’Brien | TEDxAustin 2011

Robyn O’Brien | TEDxAustin 2011

Translator: Rhonda Jacobs
Reviewer: Denise RQ Well, first of all, before I get started, I want to take the opportunity
to thank all of you for being here because you are a remarkable
group of visionaries and leaders, and it is such an honor
to spend this time with you today, so that you for taking the time
out of your weekend. As I like to share,
I am such an unlikely crusader for cleaning up the food supply. I was born and raised in Houston, Texas on Twinkies and po’ boys. I wasn’t a foodie. What I was, was the oldest
of four children, and as you often hear about, I inherited absolutely every single one
of those Type A overachieving genes you read about in a first-born child. And thankfully, I channeled that
into business school. I received a full scholarship and graduated as the top woman in my class before going on to serve
as a food industry analyst. And when management teams
would come through our offices from Whole Foods and Wild Oats, we kind of thought they had
a nice marketing niche carved out. It was either
“Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous” or some hippie thing. It just wasn’t something that
we were particularly on board with. And after doing that for a while,
I traded the briefcase for a diaper bag, and with that same Type A energy, my husband and I
had four kids in five years. (Laughter) And up until that point,
I really had not given a lot of thought about what was in the food supply. I figured if it was on grocery
store shelves, it was safe. Don’t tell me what to eat, and please do not tell me
what to feed my kids. I had four picky eaters,
limited time, limited budget, and I didn’t want to hear it. And then one morning
over breakfast, life changed, and our youngest child
had an allergic reaction. And in all candor that morning, that breakfast was L’Eggo my Eggo waffles,
tubes of blue yogurt, and scrambled eggs. And as her face started to swell shut, I was so unfamiliar with
what a food allergy actually looked like, that I turned
to my older three and I said, “What did you put in her face?” And they all gave me
those blank, little kid stares, and I got so scared. And I raced her
to the pediatrician’s office and she says, “Robyn,
she’s having this allergic reaction. What did you feed the kids for breakfast?” And I said, “L’Eggo my Eggo waffles,
blue yogurt and scrambled eggs.” And she said, “Well, those are three
of the top eight allergens.” And she starts rattling off
all of this stuff about food allergies, and I’m thinking, “How can a child
be allergic to food?” And so as we got the baby calmed down,
got everybody back home. I put everyone down for a nap that day. And every single analytical gene
in my body went off. Because I hadn’t known anybody that
had had a food allergy when I was a kid. So I wanted to dig into this data;
I wanted to understand what was going on. And that morning five years ago, I learned that from 1997 until 2002, there had been a doubling
of the peanut allergy. I also learned at that point that one
out of 17 kids under the age of three now has a food allergy. And I then went on to learn
from the Centers for Disease Control that there had been a 265 percent increase
in the rate of hospitalizations related to food allergic reactions. That was doctors checking kids
into the E.R., that wasn’t moms. And so I wanted to know,
what is a food allergy? Well, a food allergy is when your body
sees food proteins as foreign. And so it launches this
inflammatory response to drive out that foreign invader. And so it begged the question, is there something foreign in our food
that wasn’t there when we were kids? And so the analytical side of me, I turned
to the US Department of Agriculture, and I learned that yes,
beginning in the 1990s, new proteins were engineered
into our food supply. And it was done to maximize
profitability for the food industry. And as Sonny touched on, that made
perfect sense to me as an analyst. It drove shareholder value,
absolutely the fiduciary responsibility of the corporations that
were introducing these proteins, but at the same time, no human trials
were conducted to see if they were safe. And so milk allergy is the most common
allergy in the United States according to
the Wall Street Journal and CNN. And so I wanted to know,
is there something in the milk that wasn’t there when we were kids? And beginning in 1994, in order to drive profitability
for the dairy industry, scientists were able to create
this new genetically engineered protein, and this synthetic growth hormone and inject it into our cows
to help them make more milk. The business model makes perfect sense,
it’s a brilliant one. But at the same time, what happened
is that it was making the animals sick. It was causing ovarian cysts,
it was causing mastitis, it was causing lameness,
it was causing skin disorders. And for that reason, it increased
antibiotic use in those animals. And so governments around the world said,
“We’re going to exercise precaution, and we are not going
to allow this into our dairy and into our milk supply, because it hasn’t yet been proven safe.” We took a different approach. We said, “It hasn’t been
proven dangerous, so we’ll allow it.” As I learned that, I thought, “How many sippy cups
have I filled with this milk? And how many bowls of cereal
have I poured it on for my husband?” Not knowing that Canada, the UK, Australia, Japan, New Zealand, and all 27 countries in Europe
didn’t allow it when it was introduced in the US in 1994. And so I wanted to know what are the conditions
that we’re seeing here in the US? Because one of the concerns
around this new growth hormone, this synthetic protein, was that it also elevated hormone levels that were linked to breast,
prostate, and colon cancer. And so I turned to remarkable
organizations like LIVESTRONG and the American Cancer Society,
because I wanted to know what the rates of cancer were
in the US versus the rest of the world. The US has the highest rates of cancer
of any country on the planet. And according to
the American Cancer Society, migration studies show that if you were
to move here from somewhere like Japan, your likelihood of developing cancer
increases fourfold. One out of two American men
and one out of three American women are expected to get cancer
in their lifetime. I also learned that
one out of eight women has breast cancer. But then what I learned, is that only one in ten
of those breast cancers are genetic, which means nine out of ten of them
are environmentally triggered. So kind of like, you know, when you’re
driving down the highway and you see an accident,
and you just keep looking, and you’re not really sure why? I wanted to know, are these
other allergies that we’re seeing, have foreign proteins been introduced
into our food there too. And shortly after, milk was engineered
with this new protein. Scientists then engineered soy, and soy is also
one of the top eight allergens. And again, to drive profitability
for the soy industry because soy is primarily used
to fatten livestock, scientists were able
to engineer the soybean so that it could withstand
increasing doses of weed killer. And the business model, as an analyst,
made perfect sense. You engineer the seed
so that you can sell more weed killer. And at the same time, you’ve engineered
something new into that seed so that you can patent it. So now you’ve got a patent on the seed
and you’re selling additional weed killer. But once again, governments
around the world said no studies have been done
to show if this is safe to feed to the livestock
and to feed to our consumers, and so we’re going to exercise precaution in order to prevent the onset
of any disease that may result. And in 1996 here in the US,
we took a different approach. As I kept learning more
about food allergies, I was hearing concern from parents
about a corn allergy, and so I wanted to know,
did corn get engineered? And interestingly, in the late 1990s,
as concern started to grow about the spraying
of insecticide over cornfields, scientists were able to engineer that
insecticide into the DNA of a corn seed, so that as a corn plant grows,
it releases its own insecticide. As a result, corn was then regulated
by the EPA as an insecticide. As you can imagine, this was incredibly
hard information to learn. We had introduced a term
called “substantial equivalence.” It’s a conceptual tool,
and it’s used by the tobacco industry to facilitate the approval process of something for which
no human trials have been conducted. And that was the justification given for why we were introducing
these things in the US. And as I sat down one night
with my husband, I said, “I can’t unlearn this. And I don’t know what people will say
if I try to teach them, but I have to try.” And so the next morning I came downstairs,
and I sat our four kids down, and I said, “You know how mom
has learned some pretty tough stuff about what’s going on in our food, and how it’s not in food
in other countries, and it’s especially
not in food fed to kids? I have to try to do something about that.” And one of my boys,
he looked at me and he said, “Mom, how many people are on your team?” (Laughter) And I said, “Well,
it’s you four and daddy.” And he said, “Mom,
you need a bigger team.” (Laughter) And he was absolutely right. And at that point, I’d had people
come up to me saying, “You’re food’s Erin Brockovich,
you’re food’s Erin Brockovich. You should reach out to Erin Brockovich.” And at that point, I did not want
to be food’s Erin Brockovich, and I thought, “How in the world
could I possibly reach out to her?” But then, all of those Type A genes
started going off, and I thought, “I have to at least try.” If I could get through
to somebody like Erin Brockovich, then maybe we could create
this change here in the US. And so channeling all of that energy,
I honestly spent about two weeks crafting a four sentence e-mail
to Erin Brockovich. (Laughter) And I fired it off. And I don’t know if I ever
really expected her to reply, but when she did, to have someone like that cheering you on suddenly makes you think that
maybe one person can make a difference. (Whoops) (Applause) So as I began to really dig into this, and look at the fact that we were using
all of these new ingredients in the US food supply
that we weren’t using in other countries, I’ve got to admit, it drove me absolutely
nuts now expensive organic food was. And so I looked into the business model. And what I learned is that
as a national family, sitting down to our national dinner table
with our national budget, our taxpayer resources are being used to subsidize the growth of these crops
with all these chemicals. And then over here, the crops that
are grown through the organic process, which means without
the use of synthetic chemicals, those guys are charged fees to prove
that their stuff is grown without it, then they’re charged fees to then
label those things as grown without it, and on top of that,
they don’t get the insurance and marketing program assistance
that these guys over here do. So not only is their cost structure
higher over here, but then on top of that, what I learned is that it wasn’t just those
farmers that it was impacting. The farmers who are fourth
and fifth generation farmers, who have been feeding
our country for generations, because those seeds are patented, they now have a cost structure
that’s new too, because they have to pay royalty fees,
licensing fees, and trait fees to even begin to plant
those seeds on their farm. And so when I thought
about this, I thought, how are our American corporations
exporting their products if these other countries
don’t allow these ingredients? And that’s when I realized,
and found research, that Kraft, and Coca-Cola and Walmart,
they are doing a remarkable job of responding to consumer demand
in other countries. And they have formulated
their products differently. So Kraft and Coca-Cola and Walmart,
they don’t use these ingredients in the products they distribute
in other countries. Now when I first learned that,
at first, it was kind of depressing. But then I thought, we just need
to teach each other here. And as I reflected on the fact
that we’d introduced these proteins, there’d been all of this toxicity concern,
I wanted to know, what are we spending on healthcare
versus the rest of the world? The US spends more on healthcare
than any country on the planet. Sixteen percent of our GDP
goes towards managing disease. What that means
is that a company like Starbucks spends more on healthcare costs
than they do on coffee. And as an American, I realized, this very easily could be affecting
our global competitiveness. Because rather than driving profitability
towards our core competencies in the global marketplace,
we’re managing disease. And I thought, we don’t need
to wait for regulation, we don’t need to wait for legislation, we can begin to exercise precaution
in our own families, in our own communities,
and in our own corporations, so that we can protect the health
and well-being of our families, and ultimately, of our economy. And as I was coming through
all of this knowledge, and having dismissed all of it,
it was pretty paralyzing. But then I realized, you can’t make
the perfect the enemy of the good. And it’s really all about progress,
not perfection. And while none of us can do everything,
all of us can do one thing. And just as you don’t
potty train a kid overnight, and you don’t wean them
from a sippy cup overnight, this is a process that,
it doesn’t happen overnight. But that as each and every single
one of us does one thing, we have the ability
to affect remarkable change. Because each and every single one of you
has talents and attributes that you are uniquely good at. And when you leverage that with something
that you are passionate about, you can affect remarkable change,
in the health of your family, in the health of your company, and in the health of our country. And the bottom line is there is nothing more patriotic
that we could be doing. Thank you. (Cheers) (Applause) Host: You might get a standing ovation
every time you give this talk, but we don’t get
to give them all the time, so thank you for taking that in.

100 thoughts on “Robyn O’Brien | TEDxAustin 2011”

  1. Why did TED allow this quack to use their stage to sell her woo-book?  Stuff like this is causing a serious problem for the reputation of TED.

  2. Cow milk is for calves not humans…..The reason they pasteurized milk was to combat TB and other diseases but the pasteurization process kills nutrients and bad bacteria as well as bacteria like B12 and also promotes dangerous pathogens.Calves fed pasteurized milk die within 60 days.Its like nature is trying tell us "Drink your own mother`s milk,then once your old enough to eat solid foods its time to be weened off milk" 
    Not to mention we are separating babies from their mothers.That`s the ultimate in cruelty,the strongest love there is is the love between a mother and child.
    Cows go crazy when they take their babies away,they cry out for days.
    Its a shame our schools don`t teach us the insanity of drinking cow milk.They also don`t mention we are consuming milk from cows with a cancerous virus.Over 80% of all dairy cows tested have Bovine leukemia
    What goes around comes around,what happens to animals will happen to us.We are eating diseased animal flesh not to mention we are mass murdering other beings just because they are of another species……Go Vegan.

  3. Probably the best treatise on GMO is Geoffrey Smiths "GeneticRoulette". It doesn't matter what the trolls or skeptitards say here. It's just common sense, we evolved over eons fine tuned to what nature's provided for us for sustenance. To alter our food for no other reason than for the profit of the few in itself is criminal enough. But ignore or subvert the findings of proper research if indeed it was properly researched is outright evil. Genetic engineering is rickety science to begin with. All they're doing is firing genes shotgun style at an organism hoping that upon billions being blasted at the host will take. In playing God to enhance their margins, they're only invoking "Mammon" the god of greed. In effect sacrificing humanity upon his alter. Psychopathy of the few upon the rest, out of tune with the Creation.

  4. The Government/Industry revolving door is too well documented to ignore. Monsanto funds the studies and gets the results that they pay handsomely for. Their lobbiests actually write the legislation and pass it on to government committees to pass into regulations. Gorvernment officials who retire from their seats in government are then given top positions in the corporations they promoted and made laws in favor of. This is not theory it is documented fact.

  5. As far as food allergies are concerned what I think would be revealing is a comparison between the US, other developed countries with different food laws – but where stuff is still done to food and the diet involves processed food – and poorer countries where people tend to eat a more wholesome diet. Australia might not have done all the things the US has done to their food but food allergies seem to be on the rise here. I rarely heard of dangerous food allergies when I was a child but now so many children seem to have these allergies.

    A global meditation Feb. 3 6 PM to send Loving Light to the companies that make these
    chemicals and gmo's.

  7. Seeds of Destruction: Hidden Agenda of Genetic Manipulation by F. William Engdahl
    This skilfully researched book focuses on how a small socio-political American elite seeks to establish control over the very basis of human survival: the provision of our daily bread. “Control the food and you control the people.”
    This is no ordinary book about the perils of GMO.  Engdahl takes the reader inside the corridors of power, into the backrooms of the science labs, behind closed doors in the corporate boardrooms.
    The author cogently reveals a diabolical world of profit-driven political intrigue, government corruption and coercion, where genetic manipulation and the patenting of life forms are used to gain worldwide control over food production. If the book often reads as a crime story, that should come as no surprise. For that is what it is.
    Engdahl’s carefully argued critique goes far beyond the familiar controversies surrounding the practice of genetic modification as a scientific technique. The book is an eye-opener, a must-read for all those committed to the causes of social justice and world peace.

  8. WOW – and we knew?  Read "the China Study" & "the Omnivore's Dilemma", also enlightening.  Is Monsanto and evil company?

  9. Just checked up on Oceanceaser.  Credibility is pretty slim for trying to sound like he knows what he's are talking about  

  10. Don't understand why there is such a big fuss about not wanting to label foods that have been genetically modified. Anyone that knows research knows that it takes a while for statistical certainty on whether GMO is safe or not. In the mean time, PLEASE quit blocking the ability to label foods GMO. As a consumer, I would like know what foods have been modified and which have not!!! Let the researchers do what they do and let me be informed about what I'm eating. Label GMO food!

  11. An important note to all…  The multi-billion dollar GMO industries pay trolls to comment on anti-GMO posts and videos.
    Do your own research, think for yourself, and when in doubt, follow the money.

  12. Looking for some interesting scientific lit on the potential downside of GMO…
    Pubmed article…

    A little chilling

  13. One should take a good, hard critical look at the spirit and mentality of science and scientists. They arrogantly take great pride in their "rational" approach to all things
    natural and routinely despise those who would take a more "spiritual" or "holistic"
    (non reductionistic)  approach to life.

    In particular they heap great scorn on those who will not bow down and worship their
    goddess Fortuna such as the creationists. Yet the current state of the world including
    the issues raised in this talk are in large measure the consequences of this "rational"
    method of scientific thinking. There are no innocent bystanders here as the revolving door "industry, academia, government" is well known.

    Their devilish inventions have destroyed water and air. They have blown holes in the ozone layer through their inability to anticipate SIMPLE chemical reactions. The polar ice caps are in a state of runaway meltdown because the false prophets have led
    humanity on a path of unsustainability. Their SAFE pesticides are driving bees toward extinction. Their methodolgies have made the killing of human beings on a vast scale the push of a button. etc. etc. We could go on and on. The visionary RACHEL CARSON first sounded the alarm and was greatly derided, yet ultimately vindicated.

    Have you ever considered the FACT that the same wisdom and science that brought
    you MAD BETSY THE COW is bringing you and your children RBGH milk and
    GMO products. 

    Nature is so subtle and deep. Death creeps up on us ever so slowly and silently when we tamper with Her.

    The scientists and technocrats  of today are the children of sorcerers and alchemists.
    The end result will be the same. 

  14. "The U.S. has the highest rates of caner in the World."  Why? Because of sheer volume.  The U.S. is third most populated country in the world (behind China and India).  

  15. If GMO foods are safe to consume, why is there such resistance to labeling – particularly by Monsanto shareholders? And why have some in the food industry chosen to fight the consumer's right-to-know what is in the food they purchase? We're poisoning the planet with chemicals that work their way to the ocean.

    Rather than take the attitude that I'll use a product until it's proven harmful – at a point that most likely would be too late for a positive outcome – I'll use a product when you can prove that it's safe for humans, other members of the animal kingdom, and for the planet. Trolls are indeed out there and I see many of their comments below.

    On a final note, Deet is looking less bad now that there's a genetically modified mosquito. Guess each person decides which is the lesser of two evils.

  16. Please STOP giving money to "cure" cancer and begin supporting campaigns to "prevent" cancer by not spending money on cancer-causing toxic gunk. 

  17. The handle use by 'oceanceaser'  Lot of hubris here.  FYI word derivation — Caesar (ruler, emperor), name morphed into Czar (Russian royalty version of the top dog ruler), aka morphed into Kaiser  (top German ruler – related tyrant).   Ocean- making waves, associated w/ emotions.  Guy's a troll pulling your strings.

  18. "Feeding Babies Foods With Peanuts Appears To Prevent Allergies"

    It seems that parents hyperventilating about peanut allergies and thereby removing peanuts from the lives of their children, including their houses and schools, so that their immune systems never develop from an early age to handle peanut allergens, may in fact be leading to the increased rate of peanut allergies.

    Robyn O'Brien..  Oops.   It turns out, jumping to conclusions and forming correlations isn't the best way to handle scientific research.  GMOs came to market at the same time, so lets forget everything else that was happening in the world at the time and blame peanut allergies on GMOs.  No proof of causation necessary!


  19. noone here is talking about peanuts and eggs in vaccinations!!!!!!  that also is what caused the rise in peanut allergies and egg allergies. educating every one about filthy KRaft and Walmart and co ca cola and etc. is not enough. costs are tolerable when the goal is to kill a bunch off sooner to manage the masses.wake up robyn.

  20. Its pretty fucked up how monsanto and the other big companies run all the laws and shit that decides our fate….. they work for them then get jobs workin in the same field makin laws that helped the company make more profitable. .. sounds like detroit all over look what happened when thet moved those jobs to china

  21. Can you imagine driving down the main road and seeing a sign which says "WARNING – FAST FOOD KILLS"?  I just returned from Rarotonga in the Cook Islands and yes the sign was there and they have also banned fast food joints and multinationals from infecting their beautiful island – I was in heaven for 2 weeks.Imagine water clarity to 30 meters..

  22. Willy Whitten is right. This poor woman  is not a very good anaylist…. if she does not see that the profit motive will sabotage any effort we make. Untill life is valued far over profit there will be no change …..Genetic Roulette documents the latest on how GMO are enabling mutations that we now call "super bugs" because they have qualities of molds and viruses and bactreias and creat biological communities that actually help each other to attack humans now and will change the face of the planet if we are not very very lucky.

  23. What's interesting is my sister had an allergic reaction to many prepared foods while we visited LA and they were the same things she eats at home in Canada. When she came home from vacation she didn't have any more problems. It happened about 5 times with different foods.


  25. Hi Robyn, 

    Thank you for pointing out many sobering facts about our food industry and how other countries are getting a better deal than the U.S., while the mega corporations are changing and catering to their requests rather than ours. I'm a mom too…and I found out a lot more about the hazards of dairy and all animal products than was mentioned here (I know there's only oh-so-much time to talk about it.). I'd like to know, if you don't mind answering: what's stopping you from being Vegan?

  26. An important, clear talk.  I am constantly amazed how little I find in a grocery store I can eat and not worry about.

  27. I am so grateful for what Robyn is doing in spreading this information about our foods!  In the past year, following a second bout with cancer, I have spent hundreds of hours studying much of what she talks about here.  I've made dramatic changes in what I put into my body, and I have not felt this good for many, many years.  I truly believe that people could be so much healthier if they made only a few changes.  I yearn for some of my family and friends to learn even some the basics in healthier eating…but I tread lightly because no one likes to hear 'fanatical ideas'.  Keep talking, Robyn!

  28. This is one of the worst Tedx talks I have heard.  The speaker is very earnest, well spoken, and sincere, but she is speaking from a very emotional side of her brain, not thinking things through.  She asks since when did food become so dangerous? Well, since humans began eating food 200,000 years ago.  Food is not there to be nice to us and to feed us til our little tummys are full, food, for thousands of years was either extremely difficult to catch or hard to gather and process. And then there was all the poisonous foods that would flat out kill you. Food doesn't want to be food! Generally it wants to prevent us from eating it, even plants! Plants have natural pesticides that keep them safe from being decimated by insects and other animals.  This lady just doesn't know enough about biology, botany, agriculture, genetics or nutrition for me to take seriously anything she says.

  29. Since when did foodies and nutrition experts joint the ranks of "We never went to the moon" and "9/11 was an inside job" and "aliens built the pyramids" conspiracy theorists?

  30. genetic manipulation is a bad idea! selective breeding is the better way it is much more "natural" synthetics regularly cause troubles, corn that produces its own insecticide? no thanks! what kind of an idiot thought that was a good idea? poison for the bugs is poison for any others who eat it.. duh!

  31. Discovering how Certified Organic is a great choice for Inner Beauty and Outer Beauty.

  32. This will blow your mind.  Robyn has researched the additives in our food chain.
    One morning her child's face swelled up at breakfast time which turned out
    to be an allergic reaction to her breakfast!!  That started her amazing quest to
    find out how this happens.  We need to understand what is happening in our
    food chain.  Let me know what you think.  Jan

  33. Yet government is passing legislation to ban labeling of GMO foods in every state.  Who do the work for, you or the corporation?  Will you sit there and do nothing as they kill you and your family?  Will you waste time writing your congress critter?  Or will you take to the streets?  Will you fight for your life and freedom or sit in front of the boob tube and slug down your beer?  Today, America deserves what it gets for government.

  34. the corruption in this world is overwhelming. It all comes down to the money. If the government dosent care about this successful white woman. what do you think it my feel towards the rest of the population.

  35. Want more documented proof that what Robin is saying about our food is true.   Go to "Dr. John Bergman, the cancer time bomb in your fridge.. or a documentary named…GMO OMG

  36. She is so wrong on so many issues. The USA is not even close to the top in cancer rates. And the 5 countries that are higher than the US are all countries that she claims have banned such products.
    In short, she is full of BS, and she failed to mention her own financial interests in being anti-GMO and anti-everything.

  37. This whole talk is based on the correlation = causation fallacy. Ridiculous. Perhaps if you were a scientist and not an "analyst", you'd have more idea of what you were talking about.

  38. Robin O'Brien is Mother of 4 Children with allergies and was a former Wall St. Business Analyst turned "Erin Brokovich" endorsed WhistleBlower, REAL Food Activist & Author of "Unhealthy Truth" who exposed 9 Dirty Little Secrets about GMOs:

  39. WTF. You know, there are real experts in this field. They're called Registered Dieticians. It takes a several years of University, but I guess if you pump out kids, you've acquired all the knowledge you need. This woman's a conspiracy theorist, and clueless. But, I guess it sells to those who are even more science-illiterate than she is. lmao, this was such a waste of time.

  40. What an idiot. GMOs cause allergies? I'm severely allergic to mushrooms and no GMO mushrooms even exist. Correlation does NOT equal causation! 89% of the WORLD's scientists agree that she's wrong. That many scientists hardly ever agree on one thing. But instead of face responsibility and realize you shouldn't feed a "baby" child food that apparently contained known allergens before giving them an allergy test or without paying special attention, you'd rather blame the entire food industry with absolutely zero scientific proof.

  41. I can't say she is 100 % correct …..But imagine this. People who live in " Blue Zones " live to be around a bit over 100 years on the average. They eat out of their own gardens. They seldom use computers, cell phones and don't eat fast food. On the average they have 5 close life long friends to share there troubles with ….So defend the gmo stuff and sugary foods all you want to since I have gone a bit more vegetarian and dropped the sodas my sonograms on my liver on looking much better. ( Fact millions of American will die from fatty liver and never see it coming. )

  42. I'm no doctor but my guess is, if she doesn't stop worrying about the food supply and start worrying about that sunbed she will develop skin cancer. Look at that complexion.
    Looks like fuckin leather!
    And of course she is full of shit about everything she's talking about.

  43. This was a winding tale of misdirection. We never learn what her child was allergic to, so we never learn whether it's even remotely possible that a GMO caused the allergy. I have to assume that's because the food she was allergic to was not derived from a GMO.

    Allergies are on the rise across the world in first-world countries. So, big fail on linking that to our food supply in the U.S.

    Pointing specifically to milk as the cause of high cancer rates in the U.S. seems odd, given how very many more carcinogenic substances we allow in our air, water, furniture, household items and chemicals, cleaners, pesticides – you name it – than other countries do. Any one or combination of those are just as likely to be responsible.

    Then she disingenuously points out how much we spend on healthcare. Which is because our healthcare is dramatically more expensive than it is in nearly any other country, not because we are sicker.

    And concludes with some sort of pep talk. I am not impressed, and she has provided evidence for nothing, much less proof.

  44. Such a brave and concerned warrior-mother with a huge amount of common sense and guts, presenting her story from experience. Wow, what an advocate for a healthy way of life, restoring autonomy in our diets, our guts! I'm a nutritionist since 1973 and gladly cheer Robyn in promoting the choice of Real Food, which, to me, means clean home grown or organic food.

  45. Milk is never safe for human anyway with or without the genetically engineered protein injected to cows. With the foreign protein is worse of course.

  46. A very talented liar. This talk is a great to study if you're in the business of using emotional appeals to lead people in the wrong direction.

  47. Thank you for your talk. Very informative and inspiring. My wife has some similar research and I applaud her and you for that.

  48. This is unscientific scaremongering.

  49. Instead of asking an open-ended question like "What's causing this?", she begins with the assumption that something in the food is causing the rise in food allergies.

    But the most common food allergies – nuts, milk, and eggs – aren't GMOs and never have been. Another common food allergy – wheat – isn't GMO either.
    Barely 4 minutes in, and she's already failed.

  50. Another example of how she's full of crap: U.S. incidence rates of breast, colon and prostate cancer have DROPPED since 1994. She's a fearmonger, full stop.

  51. "how can a baby be allergic to food?"
    where do i begin with how uneducated and ridiculous this talk is?! go home woman!
    when did TED turn to total crap?! sucks ass

  52. Vote with your wallet and support labeling. The reason GMOs are not in European food products is labeling, which ensured people wouldn't buy them… producers use safer ingredients. If we collectively stop buying these products, it will force them to make food safer.

  53. Zero out of ten cancer cases are genetic. Because the environment, lifestyle and particularly food habits are inheritable.

  54. So to summary , allergy have increased in certain foods when those certain foods have been chemically engineered to produce more of them.

    Coca cola and Kraft engineer their products so they don't use those chemicals but CocaCola is not really an exporter they have palnts all over the world so how does that work?

  55. even the Russian, Putin has banned all import and use of GMO's in his country. Guess Putin cares more about his people's health than USA leaders.

  56. Liberal attitude toward GMOs?  We've been using gene modification to create things like Corn, Tomatoes and Bananas for years. While people think of "organic" cultivation techniques as natural and safe, there are important points we might consider.  Most of the plants used today have only been developed genetically in the last 100 years, and even "heirloom" varieties were bred relatively recently.  There have been no long term studies, and plants certainly are known to produce a wide suite of toxic compounds.  
    There is a difference between causation and correlation. There is a relationship between some diets and disease but to completely conclude that GMO crops cause the majority of allergies, asthma, obesity and other diseases is a stretch.There is simply no legitimate causal relationship between biotechnology and human disease or disorders.

  57. She's painfully ignorant this subject. She hasn't done any research past news articles because if she went to the actual studies she'd find that all the independently funded and independently conducted research proves GMOs are safe and have many benefits over organics. She claims they were untested, when a GMO can't be introduced to the consumer market without 10 years of intensive independent study. She claims that the food allrgies are caused by GMOs, but the same allergy trend is visible in Europe which doesn't have GMOs, and she claims the cancer is caused by GMOs, but the cancer levels aren't visible in other countries using GMOs, which means that GMOs are objectively not the cause of any of these. Not to mention her bold faced lies and blatant ignorance about cows and the dairy industry. I agree we have a problem, and I agree it's in our food, but it's not GMOs, I think it's as simple as over processing our food.

  58. It is SUCH an honor…. to contribute to the world's overpopulation crisis with four children.

    In spite of her good work fighting for a cleaner, purer food supply, the bigger, more critical and rapidly escalating threat to humanity eclipsing all other concerns is the still expanding world population which is placing unsustainable demands upon our already overstressed natural resources. By 2030 nearly 1/4th of the planet's people will be facing regular, severe shortages of fresh water, and by 2050 lack of food and healthcare will be decimating over a third of humanity. The fate of human civilization is everyday placed in greater peril by the birth of every child, especially every child beyond the level of self replacement. Each child beyond 2 is a blatant and direct assault upon our common shared future.

    2 children per couple average is not an outrageously unjust restriction of personal, natural, God given rights, it's our only hope for survival.

  59. 1) Dr. Bergman sent me! 2) Erin Brockovich is on Facebook and you can like her page… it helps, and she answers posts all the time. 3) Fukushima will get us before Monsanto does… but not by much.

  60. You may smile at this comment but here it is all the same: I am opposed to the spread the of GM cultivation, certainly here in Europe, because Monsanto and associates own almost all the patents, they enjoy unblinking support from the US government as seen in many ways( a few are the granting of GRAS status before many tests had even been carried out, the promises of Obama in 2008 to,label followed by complete silence and the appointment of a monsanto man to run the FDA, the Wikileaks files showing US officials in Europe reporting back in secret to the sec of state about their plans for threat and intimidation of EU govs who blocked…at.their citizens demand…the sale and cultivation of GM….the convictions in France and Canada of Monsanto operatives for 1)lying in their PR and labelling (France) and 2) trying to bribe senior scientists at health canada to support the allied monster of gm growth hormone.

    This is an instrument of US foreign policy to place the US i n a position to control the greater part of the world's food supply and seed supply. So there's my reason, argument well supported and documented.. Even the CIA coup in Ukraine may give you pause for thought. Russia has banned GM. But USMonsanto will not give up….So there it is: a question of national security. Like imperialism and the opium trade 120 years ago. If " sanctions" fail to get us to let monsanto in, will you send the marines?

  61. So we follow emotionally charged findings before we seek to understand science. She doesn’t understand how allergies work. She sounds very convincing, but her argument is full of holes. This is an issue that should be handled by scientists, not soccer moms.


  63. Well, that cannot be true. Everybody knows that our government loves us and does everything to keep us safe. They never worry about how much it costs and they never get bribed by the wealthy when they make their decisions. We are not the third-world country full of corruption like Ukraine… Don't tell me we are. Well, maybe just little bit. LOL

  64. The rate of lefthandedness in the US skyrocketed from 2% to 14% between 1905 and 1965 – clearly the result of a conspiracy to engineer a monumental shift in the human genome! I don't know anything about genetics, but I'm 100% confident that my speculation is correct.

  65. I think it's possible you're missing one layer of insidiousness: intentionally poisoning the more prevalent race IOT to make the entire populace more tractable. Profit is nice, power and control is even better. (Don't tell me "you're paranoid" or "conspiracy theorist"…I'm only saying it's possible. A scientist writes a hypothesis based on observations, then proceeds to prove it or disprove it through experimentation.)

  66. Great information! Thanks for sharing and getting this information out there!

  67. How come the US has some of the least lactose intolerance? Not saying the whole talk is bunk, but some of her lines of logic don't add up.

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