May 6, 2013 - Glyphosate and Gut Issues



Glyphosate and Gut Issues

Monday, May 6, 2013  |  By: Arden Andersen, D.O., M.S.P.H., Ph.D


"April showers bring May flowers" is the age old saying. It seems we have another unique Spring as we do pretty much every year. It is still quite cold in most of the Midwest with plenty of snow pack and a fair amount of rain. It appears that the drought is broken and replaced with floods in some areas. One thing about it, we can always talk about the weather and everyone has an opinion about it. What is interesting about this year that really makes things different is the awareness surfacing among farmers about the dangers of glyphosate and genetically engineered crops. Farmers that have been paying any attention at all to their farms are noticing increasing resistant weeds, more disease problems and plateaued yields. Further, animal farmers who are paying attention are noticing fertility problems, poor weight gain and gut inflammation. The latter observations are of paramount concern. Fertility problems and gut inflammation are now common and increasing with regularity in the human population as evidenced by the scientific literature.


Crohn’s, ulcerative colitis and celiac disease are now common household terms for many families. I see this trend in my medical practice in younger and younger people, actually children. Of greater concern today regarding these inflammatory bowel ailments is that in many cases they are not responding to steroid and immune suppressant therapies, drugs that are designed to suppress the inflammatory reaction.


One common thing I see show up in people with inflammatory bowel disorders is the lack of lactobacillus and bifidobacteria colonizing the gut, even in people taking probiotics. One could ask whether these people are taking viable probiotic products. It seems to matter little what brand or colony count these people ingest, they still aren’t surviving. Something is killing the beneficial flora.


Enter glyphosate. More and more we find glyphosate residue in the food, especially in grains directly sprayed with glyphosate. Glyphosate is a potent antibiotic as documented by its August 10, 2010 U.S. patent. Even at doses hundreds of times less than that in agricultural sprays, glyphosate is a potent antibiotic against beneficial gut flora, specifically lactobacillus and bifidobacteria. This may very well be the underlying cause of colony collapse disorder in bees as the recent research show the sick bees to be void of lactobacillus and bifidobacteria.


Our first approach for healing the gut of people with inflammatory bowel disorder is to get them off their reactive foods, especially off grains. Grains are both inherently inflammatory in these people and loaded with glyphosate if commercially grown. Once this inflammatory cascade is halted we can then get healing of the gut with aloe vera, amino acids, minerals, probiotics and oils. It can be a fairly rapid recovery, weeks, or can be months depending upon the patient and their adherence to their dietary requirements.

I cannot stress enough the toxicity of glyphosate made even more dangerous by the false belief that it is perfectly safe, non-toxic and biodegradable. A recent article, "Glyphosate’s Suppression of Cytochrome P450 Enzymes and Amino Acid Biosynthesis by the Gut Microbiome: Pathways to Modern Diseases" by Anthony Samsel and Stephanie Seneffreally nails it. P450 enzymes are central to our survival. One of their vital functions is to detoxify xenobiotics, chemicals from the environment. "Thus, glyphosate enhances the damaging effects of other food borne chemical residues and environmental toxins…" The authors go on to state, "We explain the documented effects of glyphosate and its ability to induce disease, and we show that glyphosate is the "textbook example" of exogenous semiotic entropy: thedisruption of homeostasis byenvironmental toxins." (Entropy 2013, 15, 1416-1463; doi:10.3390/e15041416)

Countering this scenario requires extensive nutritional support and probiotic support to counter the direct effects of the residual glyphosate in the feed. Farmers must learn nutritional regeneration of their soils and crops getting to the pointwhere they don’t need these chemicals in order to get a crop. Many farmers are already doing this and have not suffered yield drag without these chemicals.


Another growing season is fast approaching; it is another opportunity to improve the soil and crop nutrition and sustainability. It is another opportunity to learn.

ABC Comment:

Livestock as well as people benefit from the presence of lactobacillus and bifidobacteria in the gut. Most of our products contain high levels of these beneficial organisms. Find these here on our website, at!