What is the fertilizer in our food made of and what effects does it have on our health? How does the fertilizer now, in terms of mineral content, differ from the fertilizer of the pre-industrial age?
Pre industrial age fertilizers were organic, natural decomposition of organic material mainly manures. Chemical fertilizers are produced from high temperature processing of organic materials such as coal tar and later crude oil. The use of temperatures above the vaporization point of sulfur as described by the petrochemical company’s own web sites appear to be the issue.
Those cultures which have organic fertilized food supplies have lower disease than those who use artificial forms of plant foods. Finland banned the use of chemical fertilizers because of they feared the cadmium and its perceived toxic abilities in 1985. Their epidemiology has shown a 10 fold improvement compared to that of the US in 1985 which had almost identical numbers.
This is a story that may be too convoluted to tell briefly. But regarding sulfur hopefully this will suffice. Chemical fertilizers were first developed in the 1700s by a Polish researcher. Not until Farbin ( Bayer ) adopted this research and began producing chemical fertilizers from coal tar in 1860 did their use affect those who ate the food. Two medical events which occurred in Germany we feel could be directly related to these fertilizers. 1906 Dr Alzheimer described “ women lost in their own minds.” otherwise Alzheimer’s which had not observed in countries other than Germany until after the adoption of the use of these chemical fertilizers. Most of Europe had adopted these fertilizers before the start of WW2. In 1920, Dr. Otto Warburg had an opportunity to see enough cancer to describe the basis for his Noble Prize work while cancer was less evident in other countries. In 1938 when the price of gas and crude oil was cheap Prescott Bush [the grandfather of current (2008) U.S. President George W. Bush] and Nelson Rockefeller [the son of John D. Rockefeller] contracted with Farbin I.G. to develop a crude oil based fertilizer in the West Nile Region of Africa. That formula which is known as Ammonium Sulfate and Ammonium Nitrate is the leading formula for most chemical fertilizers used world wide.
These fertilizers are devoid of sulfur due to the 380 degree F temperatures at which they are “crackled.” The other issue is that these fertilizers bind up any free sulfur available in rain water from the sulfur cycle.
Sulfur is the forgotten nutrient as stated by Dr. Beth Ley, Ph.D. Sulfur is the third or fourth most important mineral ( element ) necessary for healthy metabolism yet sulfur is not discussed in medical or scientific literature. The assumption is that we get all of the sulfur we need from our food we eat and that may have been true until we changed the way we feed our food.
A review of the epidemiology of the US since 1954 when chemical fertilizers were mandated shows as much as a 4,000% increase in cancer and other disease entities. The responses from our Study members appear to suggest that by adding sulfur to their diets these disease entities have been reversed or addressed in a positive manner.
Finland is an interesting case for the effects of chemical fertilizers. Fearing the cadmium these fertilizers contained Finland banned their use in 1985. Nowhere was sulfur ever mentioned regarding these fertilizers.
Other cultures such as the Amish which use only organic fertilizers also enjoy fewer diseases though we must rely on the fewer studies regarding their “epidemiology.” Okinawa and South Korea have lower disease rates compared to the rest of Japan or North Korea. Brazil has higher disease rates than Argentina which relies on manure rather than chemical fertilizers.
The manufacturers of chemical fertilizers argue that their products produce greater crop yields, but the question is whether the nutritional value is also higher compared to the gross tonnage. [a very interesting point]
“Without a constant supply of sulfur we are, in effect, dying each day through cellular degeneration.” What are some ways a person can get an adequate supply of sulfur in their body to stay healthy?
Prior to the use of chemical fertilizers, we and many nutritional researchers as stated in Jack Challem’s article the “Sulfur Solution” our nutritional need for sulfur was supplied by all of the food we ate. We argue that since we have altered the bio available sulfur our food receives have become sulfur deficient. Grass eating livestock plus organically grown produce could again supply our need for sulfur. Those cultures which eat organically grown foods are not sulfur deficient. Garlic, green onions, kale, broccoli and spinach are high in sulfur, if grown organically. Sulfur is a mineral which is not made by plants or animals, it is either in our soils or NOT. Until we return to a more organic agribusiness then supplementing is the only way we see to allow our bodies to stay healthy regarding our need for sulfur. We feel it is important to remember that we and all living organisms are cells which are combined within a matrix to form all of our “parts” and in turn our whole.