Kelly Brogan, MD: A-Salt With A “Deadly” Weapon (Part Two)

kelly brogan fluoride hypocrisy

In part one of this series,1 it was revealed that Kelly Brogan, M.D., sells an aluminum-laden health supplement while simultaneously (falsely) linking small amounts of aluminum to myriad serious health problems, and fear-mongering the population at large into avoiding safe, effective vaccines.  Here, in part two, we’ll look at a second “toxic” ingredient found in the same Brogan supplement.  It’s particularly important to point out Brogan’s hypocrisy and questionable medical practices at this time, as she’s been named to the advisory board of the popular SXSW Conference, taking place March 9-17, 2018,  in Austin, TX.2,3

At question in part two of this series is fluoride, an anion of the element fluorine.  Kelly Brogan, without evidence, links fluoride to depression, low IQ, labels it an endocrine-disrupting poison, and implicates it in birth defects.6,7,8,9

Sigh. Alex, I’ll take “Products Sold in Kelly Brogan’s Online Store,”10 and make it a true Daily Double:

kelly brogan fluoride real salt resources

A two-image composite of the Real Salt sold by Kelly Brogan via her online store. The salt contains fluoride, which Brogan links to birth defects, depression, and neurological disorders. (click/enlarge)

Real Salt.  That’s certainly better than fake salt!  Allow me to point out an ingredient of particular interest for you (click image to enlarge):11

Kelly Brogran SXSW fluoride image

Kelly Brogan’s Real Salt contains fluoride, an anion she falsely links to a plethora of diseases, even when used in small amounts. Why then is she selling it? (click/enlarge)

Do you see it?  Fluoride! I’ve highlighted it for you (click the above image to enlarge).  Yet wasn’t Doc Brogan just this very moment warning us that fluoride caused health problems?    Now, 0.0193mg per serving (13.8 parts per million) might not seem like a lot, but let’s see what Kelly Brogan herself thinks about the presence of wee amounts of an element she’s linked to birth defects:6,7,8,9

We thought that chemicals were only dangerous in big doses.

An entire burgeoning field of toxicology now endorses the role of the endocrine system in the toxic effects of even small doses of chemicals, which can synergize together to wreak havoc in dose ranges as low as parts-per-billion and which regulators still don’t consider in toxicological risk assessments.” (emphasis mine) –Kelly Brogan 12

 

So Kelly Brogan, Medicine Woman, apparently would agree that the small dose of fluoride in her product is enough to be dangerous.  But wait, it gets worse: when Brogan speaks of “synergy”, she’s referring to the concept that the outcome of mixing two chemicals is greater than the expected sum of their parts.  If you’re into tropical drinks, think of synergy like this… it’s the “lime in d’coconut” moment your tastebuds experience when you realize your beverage is fruitier than either the lime or coconut itself could provide on their own.  If you don’t like lime or coconut, and the purists will forgive me, think of synergy as sort of 2 + 2 = 4½.

Why does synergy matter in this discussion?  Because in this same supplement we’ve already caught Brogan red-handed selling more aluminum than can be found in the vaccines she wrongly demonizes.1 Now she’s added fluoride to the mix. If, according to Brogan, small amounts of aluminum are linked to Alzheimer’s,1 and fluoride to birth defects,6,7,8,9 and synergy comes into play when combining even small amounts of “toxic” chemicals such as these, what are we to say then when we find fluoride and aluminum together, locked in a tender embrace, in aisle three, row five, shelf number four, of her online store?

Thomas Jefferson once wrote that “honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom.”   In selling her followers a combination of a dose of chemicals (aluminum, fluoride) she claims will  put them at risk of Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease, endocrine system disorders, and birth defects, while in her own mind believing that synergistic effects could compound the problem, Dr. Kelly Brogan abandons all claims to the aforementioned honesty.  In hosting her on their medical advisory board, the SXSW Festival has thrown Jefferson’s metaphorical book of wisdom onto the bonfire of ignorance.  SXSW draws thousands of journalists and, in 2016, nearly 100,000 attendees,4,5 giving Brogan, an AIDS and germ-theory denier who spreads falsehoods on life-saving vaccines,13,14 fertile ground to spread misinformation that could literally cost human lives.

There is a growing online protest against Kelly Brogan’s presence at SXSW. If you’d like to join in (politely, please), consider tweeting this article (or part 1).  Suggested Twitter handles and hashtags are:

@SXSW @KellyBroganMD #SXSW #BumpBrogan

 

References
(1) Kelly Brogan, MD: A-Salt With a “Deadly” Weapon (Part One)
https://badscidebunked.wordpress.com/2017/12/18/kelly-brogan-md-a-salt-with-a-deadly-weapon-part-one/
Retrieved 19 Dec 2017

(2) SXSW Home Page
https://www.sxsw.com/
Retrieved 06 Feb 2018

(3) Meet the 2018 SXSW Wellness Expo Advisory Board
https://www.sxsw.com/news/2017/meet-the-2018-sxsw-wellness-expo-advisory-board/
Retrieved 06 Feb 2018

(4) SXSW Facts, Figures, Quotes
https://www.sxsw.com/facts-figures-quotes/
Retrieved 06 Feb 2018

(5) (CNN) South by Southwest Fast Facts
https://www.cnn.com/2013/09/13/us/south-by-southwest-fast-facts/index.html
Retrieved 06 Feb 2018

(6) 7 Facts About Depression That Will Blow You Away
Warning: not a scholarly article.  Contains false and/or misleading information.
http://kellybroganmd.com/7-facts-about-depression-that-will-blow-you-away/
Retrieved 18 Dec 2017

(7) Are You Fluoridated?
Warning: not a scholarly article.  Contains false and/or misleading information.
http://kellybroganmd.com/are-you-fluoridated/
Retrieved 18 Dec 2017

(8) Birth Defects From Contaminated Water
Warning: not a scholarly article.  Contains false and/or misleading information.
http://kellybroganmd.com/birth-defects-from-contaminated-water/
Retrieved 18 Dec 2017

(9) Thyroid Symptoms? Q&A with Dr. Amy Myers
Warning: not a scholarly article.  Contains false and/or misleading information.
http://kellybroganmd.com/thyroid-health-qa-dr-amy-myers/
Retrieved 17 Dec 2017

(10) Real Salt (Kelly Brogan Online Store)
http://kellybroganmd.com/resources/
Retrieved 11 Dec 2017

(11) Real Salt Chemical Analysis
http://realsalt.redmond.life/wp-content/uploads/sites/6/2017/05/Real-Salt-Analysis.pdf
Retrieved 04 Feb Feb 2017

(12) The Brain Does Have An Immune System
Warning: not a scholarly article.  Contains false and/or misleading information.
http://kellybroganmd.com/the-brain-does-have-an-immune-system/
Retrieved 27 Dec 2017

(13) (Newsweek) HIV Doesn’t Cause AIDS According to […] Kelly Brogan
http://www.newsweek.com/hiv-doesnt-cause-aids-according-gwyneth-paltrow-goop-doctor-kelly-brogan-735645
Retrieved 04 Feb 2017

(14) Immunity: The Emerging Truth
Warning: not a scholarly article.  Contains false and/or misleading information.
http://kellybroganmd.com/immunity-emerging-truth/
Retrieved 04 Feb 2017

 

Image Credits
A small section of the textbook “General Chemistry 101: 607 Pages of Notes Covering All High School and College General Chemistry” by Professor Chemistry, available on Amazon at
https://www.amazon.com/General-Chemistry-101-Covering-College/dp/1979048754/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1513472704&sr=1-2&keywords=chemistry+101, was used in the cover art under provisions of Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, commonly known as “fair use law”. This material is distributed without profit with the intent to provide commentary, review, education, parody, and increase public health knowledge.

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Kelly Brogan, MD: A-Salt With a “Deadly” Weapon (Part One)

kelly brogan real salt aluminum vaccines header

The takeaways:

  • Kelly Brogan, M.D. claims aluminum is toxic to all life forms1 and falsely links it to a plethora of diseases.
  • Brogan’s fear mongering re: aluminum includes steering patients away from life-saving vaccines that contain small amounts of the element.
  • Via her online store, the doctor sells aluminum via a health supplement, in amounts that equal or exceed the aluminum found in the vaccines she wrongly vilifies.
  • Ominously, the 2018 SXSW Festival is offering Dr. Brogan a popular platform to further her dangerous and hypocritical “medical” views.

You can’t swing a virtual dead cat on the internet without hitting a doctor who has an online store, and Kelly Brogan, M.D., is no exception.  While Brogan tirelessly campaigns against aluminum in vaccines, foods, and beauty products, ironically, she sells a health supplement that contains as much or more aluminum than is found in the safe, critical vaccines against which she fear mongers.

Dr. Brogan peddles Real Salt2, touted to contain more than sixty essential trace elements that promote health and well being.3  Unfortunately for the good doctor, one of those elements is aluminum, which she falsely links to a wide range of problems, including Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s Disease, neurological disorders, ADHD, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, and others.1,4,5,6,7,8,10

In the following images, we can see Real Salt for sale at KellyBroganMD.com,2 as well as an elemental analysis of the salt provided by the vendor.9  Please click each image to enlarge.

kelly brogan resources: real salt, contains aluminum

A two-image composite from Kelly Brogan’s online store highlighting the “Real Salt” sold by the doctor. (click/enlarge)

Kelly brogan sells as much or more aluminum than can be found in vaccines and products she vilifies

Analysis of Kelly Brogan’s Real Salt reveals as much or more aluminum than can be found in the vaccines she wrongly vilifies.  See references for full list;9 this screen snapshot has been altered by the author to highlight the aluminum.  No changes to elements or quantities have been made.  (click/enlarge)

 

It must be strongly stated that the dangers posed by aluminum, and in particular Real Salt, the product sold by Ms. Brogan, exist solely in her mind.  The Real Salt brand is as safe as any item you’d find on your store shelf.

Route of administration (e.g. ingestion, injection, inhalation, absorption via the skin) matters in the real world, but you won’t find Kelly Brogan living in such a place.   She’s an equal opportunity alarmist, damning aluminum whether its injected as a vaccine, ingested as an antacid or baking soda, or rubbed on the skin as an antiperspirant.5  Fine.  Let’s play by her rules.  Since vaccines are arguably one of the most important advancements in recent human history, I thought it would be instructive to compare the amount of aluminum found in Brogan’s own product against that found in some of the essential vaccines she wrongly condemns.

Nothing but the Facts, Ma’am
As we can see in the previous table, Real Salt lists an average of 0.1946mg of aluminum per serving in their product,** where a serving size is 1.4 grams (approximately one quarter teaspoon).  By comparison:

  • The HPV vaccine is indicted by Brogan for alleged biotoxicity.6   It protects against the cancer-causing human papillomavirus (HPV), and contains 0.5mg/dose of aluminum.11,13  This is equal to just  2.6 servings of Kelly Brogan’s salt.

 

  • Regarding the 0.125 mg/dose of aluminum in the Pneumococcal vaccine,12,13 the aluminum in Brogan’s salt exceeds the vaccine’s by 36%.   That’s right, you’ll get more aluminum from the doctor’s Real Salt than from the vaccine.  Yes, I know it’s ingested rather than injected here, but remember, Brogan damns aluminum regardless of route of administration.5   Dr. B. wrongly links the Pneumococcal vaccine’s aluminum to autoimmunity, long-term brain inflammation, and associated neurological complications.7  The vaccine is an important protection against diseases such as pneumonia and bacterial meningitis.
  • Dr. Brogan weaves a very tangled tale in regard to the DTaP/inactivated polio/Hib vaccine, which contains 0.33mg/dose aluminum.13,14  The upshot of her article, which you’ll find linked here and in the references, is that this vaccine is somehow partly responsible for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).10  A terrifying claim, especially when you consider that two servings of her salt, at 0.1946g aluminum each, provides 16% more aluminum than the vaccine.

Good Enough to Eat?
So far, we’ve limited our investigation to vaccines, which are injected. But, as I said, Brogan doesn’t want you ingesting aluminum either.  One of her prime targets is antacids because they contain, (sigh), aluminum.  How much?  Well, according to the Centers for Disease Control, you can find 104 to 208 mg/tablet of aluminum in off-the-shelf antacids.15   Doing our math from earlier, assuming a buyer of Dr. Brogan’s Real Salt used one serving per day, every day for a year, we’d end up with:

0.1946mg Al/serving/day * 365 days = 71mg of aluminum per year

Hmm.  71mg from Brogan falls a bit short of the 104mg minimum from the antacids she eschews.  And you’d think that as the year went on, you’d be clearing some of that aluminum from your body, right?  Au contraire mon frère, says Kelly Brogan:

Aluminum stays in the body for several years” –Kelly Brogan, “Special Report, Vaccines and Brain Health”4 (emphasis mine)

So, by the doctor’s own assertions, the supposedly-toxic element in her product will stick with you, dose-by-dose, for years.   We’d need 534 servings, or just about one and half years (one serving per day) of Dr. Brogan’s Real Salt to reach the “poisonous” (wink wink, nudge, nudge) levels in her ostracized antacid tablet.

As I mentioned earlier in the article, Real Salt is completely safe.  The trace amounts of the elements found therein not at all harmful.  It is my hope that an honest company won’t be held responsible because a questionable doctor tried to make money hawking their products.

You have to ask yourself: is Kelly Brogan really worth her salt?

 

If Dr. Brogan says aluminum is toxic to all life forms, perhaps she shouldn't be selling it to the life forms who follow her on social media.

If Dr. Brogan says aluminum is toxic to all life forms, perhaps she shouldn’t be selling it to the life forms who follow her on social media. (click/enlarge)

 

Oh, if it only ended there.  Not only does the distinguished doctor sell you greater quantities of an element she claims will put you in an early grave, she strongly encourages you to obtain it naturally.

Milk, anyone?

 

“Milk is for babies.  When you grow up, you have to drink beer.”–Arnold Schwarzenegger
When she isn’t busy selling aluminum to her followers, Brogan is hard at work encouraging breastfeeding.17,18,19  This is particularly unfortunate for her anti-aluminum argument.  According to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, breastfed infants receive approximately 7mg of aluminum naturally from their mother’s milk during the first six months of life, compared to only 4.4mg from vaccines.13  So, Brogan is directly encouraging the consumption of aluminum (via breast milk).

Babies won’t be directly ingesting Brogan’s salt of course, but I can’t help but compare aluminum in breast milk to the additional amount a new mother would add to her diet if she used just one serving of Brogan’s salt, one serving a day, over six months:

(0.1946mg aluminum/serving Brogan’s Salt * ~30 days/month * 6 months = 35.028mg aluminum/six months)

Via the salt she sells, Brogan would be dosing our unsuspecting mother with five times the amount of aluminum naturally given to the baby via breast milk, and nearly eight times the aluminum that baby would receive from vaccines in the first six months of his/her life.  The amount of  salt-based aluminum that would actually pass to the baby would be function of many factors including the mother’s metabolism, renal function, etc.

But, isn’t it interesting that Kelly Brogan’s Real Salt doesn’t come with a warning to nursing mothers?

Wrapping It All Up
At this point, I was tempted to pick on the irony of Dr. Brogan’s apparent aversion to wrapping food in aluminum foil, and point out that the manufacturer of her salt proudly proclaims their salt mine is wrapped in a layer of bentonite clay.  Bentonite, if you remember your college chemistry, has the formula Al2H2Na2O13Si4.  See the aluminum in there?  Brogan’s aluminum-laden salt is itself quite literally wrapped in aluminum.

But pedantics aside, let’s focus instead on the fact that the World Health Organization, the CDC, and medical consensus contradict Dr. Brogan in every way possible.13,15,16  Aluminum is the most abundant metal in the crust of our planet and you’d be hard pressed to avoid it in the food you eat, the air you breath, and the water you drink. According to the CDC, an average adult in the United States eats about 7–9 mg of aluminum per day in their food.15  The World Health Organization concurs, saying that aluminum intake from foods represents the major route of aluminum exposure to the general public.16

Most aluminum in food, water, and medicines leaves your body quickly in the feces. Much of the small amount of aluminum that does enter the bloodstream will quickly leave your body in the urine.15   The human body evolved to handle the amounts of this element we encounter on a daily basis quite nicely, thank-you-very-much, and unless you have a medical condition such as impaired renal function, Dr. Brogans tirades against aluminum aren’t worth their salt.  I encourage you to ask a real doctor.

Epilogue: SXSW
Sadly, as I go to press with this article, I’ve learned that the annual SXSW festival has named Kelly Brogan as a consultant to their advisory board.20  Giving an HIV/AIDS denialist who sells her patients the very products she says will kill them is unconscionable, and in this author’s opinion, should be met with firm, polite suggestions to the festival that they seek medical advice from better vetted sources.

This quote SXSW is particularly puzzling:

While SXSW strongly disagrees with many of Kelly Brogan’s controversial opinions, we do believe that inclusion of a variety of viewpoints from a diverse group of people is important to creating a dialog for the community represented at the SXSW Wellness Expo20–via Kavin Senapathy/Forbes

Suppose this came from NASA instead?

“While NASA strongly disagrees with many flat-earther controversial opinions, we do believe that inclusion of a variety of viewpoints from a diverse group of people is important as we complete the Near Earth Object survey that will protect our round (or is it flat?  Hey, it’s just an opinion!) planet from a potential extinction level event”

SXSW’s comments reek strongly of the plague of “alternate facts” that have, sadly, gained traction in our country.  I’m sorry, but in science, there are no alternate facts.  Dr. Brogan’s $4,000 consults for coffee enemas, AIDS denial, and selling her patients ingredients that she herself labels toxic do not constitute “controversial opinions”… they constitute what this writer believes to be medical malpractice, and should be investigated.

If you agree, and would like to make your voice heard, you can tweet to @sxsw.  The hashtag #BumpBrogan is trending.  You may wish to take a moment and make it even trendier!

 

Footnotes
** Salt analysis was performed by Advanced Laboratories, Inc. of Salt Lake City, UT, who notes that because the product being tested is a naturally occurring product that
has not been refined, actual elemental results of any specific lot number will vary slightly. Please click here to return to the article.

A typo in the “Good Enough to Eat?” section swapped units of measure and has been corrected.

References
(1) “Aluminum is Toxic to all Lifeforms” (Kelly Brogan Facebook Post)
https://www.facebook.com/KellyBroganMD/posts/366045836935604
Retrieved 10 Dec 2017

(2) Real Salt (Kelly Brogan Online Store)
http://kellybroganmd.com/resources/
Retrieved 11 Dec 2017

(3) Real Salt (FAQ)
https://realsalt.com/faq/
Retrieved 15 Dec 2017

(4) Vaccines and Brain Health (Kelly Brogan)
Warning: not a scholarly article
https://kellybroganmd.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/VaccinesandBrainHealth.pdf
Retrieved 12 Dec 2017

(5) Detox–Why You Need To (Kelly Brogan)
Warning: not a scholarly article
http://kellybroganmd.com/why-detox/
Retrieved 10 Dec 2017

(6) The Truth is Out: Gardasil Vaccine Coverup Exposed (Kelly Brogan)
Warning: not a scholarly article
http://kellybroganmd.com/truth-out-gardasil-coverup-documents-exposed/
Retrieved 12 Dec 2017

(7) Psychobiology of Vaccination Effects:
Bidirectional Relevance of Depression (Kelly Brogan)
Warning: not a scholarly article
http://kellybroganmd.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Psychobiology.pdf
Retrieved 12 Dec 2017

(8) Hepatitis B Vaccine – Is it Safe for Your Newborn?
Warning: not a scholarly article
http://kellybroganmd.com/hepatitis-b-vaccine-for-your-newborn/
Retrieved 15 Dec 2017

(9) Real Salt Elemental Analysis
http://realsalt.redmond.life/wp-content/uploads/sites/6/2017/05/Real-Salt-Analysis.pdf
Retrieved 14 Dec 2017

(10) Could this be Driving the Epidemic of Sudden Infant Death (SIDS)?  (Kelly Brogan)
http://kellybroganmd.com/driving-epidemic-sudden-infant-death-sids/
Retrieved 15 Dec 2017

(11) GARDASIL® Package Insert
[Human Papillomavirus Quadrivalent (Types 6, 11, 16, and 18)
Vaccine, Recombinant]
Suspension for intramuscular injection
https://www.fda.gov/downloads/BiologicsBloodVaccines/Vaccines/ApprovedProducts/UCM111263.pdf
Retrieved 13 Dec 2017

(12) FDA Approved Vaccines (UCM201669.pdf:  Prevnar 13)
https://www.fda.gov/downloads/BiologicsBloodVaccines/Vaccines/ApprovedProducts/UCM201669.pdf
Retrieved 14 Dec 2017

(13) Vaccine Ingredients–Aluminum (Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia)
http://www.chop.edu/centers-programs/vaccine-education-center/vaccine-ingredients/aluminum
Retrieved 11 Dec 2017

(14) Pentacel Package Insert
https://www.fda.gov/downloads/biologicsbloodvaccines/vaccines/approvedproducts/ucm109810.pdf
Retrieved 16 Dec 2017

(15) CDC: Public Health Statement for Aluminum
https://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/phs/phs.asp?id=1076&tid=34
Retrieved 10 Dec 2017

(16) Aluminum in Drinking Water (World Health Organization)
http://www.who.int/water_sanitation_health/water-quality/guidelines/chemicals/aluminium.pdf?ua=1
Retrieved 14 Dec 2017

(17) Breastfeeding: A Reproductive Right (Kelly Brogran)
Warning: Not a scholarly article
http://kellybroganmd.com/breastfeeding-a-reproductive-right/
Retrieved 15 Dec 2017

(18) Baby and Breast: Perfect Together
Warning: Not a scholarly article
http://kellybroganmd.com/baby-and-breastmilk/
Retrieved 15 Dec 2017

(19) Natural Birth and Breastfeeding: Replaceable?
Warning: Not a scholarly article
http://kellybroganmd.com/natural-birth-breastfeeding-replaceable/
Retrieved 15 Dec 2017

(20) SXSW Festival Slammed For Including HIV/AIDS Denialist In 2018 Wellness Expo
Kavin Senapathy/Forbes
https://www.forbes.com/sites/kavinsenapathy/2017/12/11/sxsw-festival-slammed-for-including-hiv-aids-denialist-in-wellness-expo/#6c8d8c576174
Retrieved 11 Dec 2017

 

Image Credits
Real Salt Logos, product imagery, and ingredients analysis snapshots are all used in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, commonly known as “fair use law”. This material is distributed without profit with the intent to provide commentary, review, education, parody, and increase public health knowledge.

Kelly Brogan, M.D. web site screen snapshots, facebook posts, and images are all used in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, commonly known as “fair use law”. This material is distributed without profit with the intent to provide commentary, review, education, parody, and increase public health knowledge.

Science Moms (Movie Review)

Science Moms Banner

On a hot summer day in the not-too-distant past, I made a small contribution to a Kickstarter project for a film known as “Science Moms.”  As time went by, the pressures of daily life pushed the movie to the back of mind, along with that promise to my wife to mow the lawn, and something about an engagement party we were supposed to attend on Saturday.  Regarding the film at least, my memory was jogged last weekend, when directors Natalie Newell and Brian Newell saw to it that a copy showed up in the inboxes of the documentary’s supporters.  I was delighted.

Science Moms1 is thirty minutes of entertainment and science wrapped around a hard hitting message: celebrity-driven misinformation on issues such as vaccines and GMOs is making life miserable for parents, who don’t know where to turn for advice–and often end up making costly decisions.

image of baby in sink. Babies are precious to their parents

Children are obviously precious to their parents, who will go to great lengths to protect them. Good advice is critical. It won’t be found in the fear-driven Facebook posts of celebrities. (Photo: © 2017 Miranda Lynn White.)

Five mothers who just happen to be three professional scientists or science writers/communicators were inspired, in part, to make the film after one of their heroes, Buffy the Vampire Slayer star Sarah Michelle Gellar, made an ill-advised and scientifically inaccurate video on GMOs.  (Yes, scientists love Buffy too!)

The movie is loaded with witty animations, facts that hit home but don’t overwhelm, and, my favorite, touching personal stories from each mother.  The most poignant moment for me was the story of a neuroscientist who reflected that views of the polio vaccine are so different now than they were in her own mother’s time.  This echoes my own mother’s recollections of losing grade school friends to the dreaded disease, and her nightly prayers that she wouldn’t end up in an iron lung herself.  The polio vaccine was/is a Godsend, yet we live in an age where parents are frightened away from safe vaccines by Hollywood stars whose science education is, to be kind, lacking.  Such are the lessons of this wonderful documentary.

I doubt that Science Moms will change the minds of any of the virulent anti-vaccine, anti-GMO, anti-science crowd, but I don’t believe that’s the film’s target audience.  The Science Moms are speaking to other mothers out there who are just as confused and frightened by misinformation as they once were.  I’ve always likened good science communication to vaccines: once someone like Gary Ruskin or Carey Gilam (USRTK) has been infected by anti-GMO propaganda, or Andrew Wakefield’s shameful vaccine lies, there’s probably no chance of saving them.

But there are countless parents who have yet to be infected by the diseased words of the Sarah Michelle Gellars, the Jenny McCarthys, and the Gwyneth Paltrows of this world.  Science Moms is the ideal vaccine for these parents.  To be forewarned is to be forearmed.  Information antibodies introduced into the brain by this $4.99 (downloadable) film could be just the thing to save a confused mother (or father) who comes up against the dangerous, pseudoscientific nonsense of a Vani Hari or David Avocado Wolfe sales pitch.

Curious?  You can learn more about Science Moms at  http://www.sciencemomsdoc.com

 

Disclosures:  I donated to the Kickstarter fund that helped make this movie possible, but I have no financial interest in it whatsoever, including compensation of any type from sales, promotion, etc.  I speak favorably of the film because I believe in it.  I once played hooky from physics class and went fishing. Now you know. [End of disclosure]

 

Image Credits
Science Moms logo copyright (c) 2017 Natalie Newell and Brian Newell/ScienceMoms. Used in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, commonly known as “fair use law,” distributed without profit, for the purpose of review, education, and increasing public knowledge.

Baby in sink copyright © 2017 Miranda Lynn White, all rights reserved.  Used with permission.

Remote control image by Santeri Viinamäki, used under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license.

References
(1) Science Moms
http://www.sciencemomsdoc.com
Retrieved 17 Nov 2017

Anti-GMO Thrive Market Sells GMOs

thrive pinocchio gmo

This very important public service announcement just in from Thrive Market, guardian of all that is good and holy in the world of organic goods:

“Thrive Market is passionately committed to creating a world that is free of genetically modified organisms, or GMOs. We believe everyone has a right to know what they are eating and what chemicals are used in the foods they consume every day. That’s why we have carefully screened our products to ensure we do not carry any GMO foods.”1

Amen!  Preach it, brother!  Testify!

Actually, you might want to hold off on that.  Thrive, how about getting down off your high horse and looking at the ingredients in your own products?  Here, let me help you: Take a look at this nice bottle of Quantum zinc throat spray featured in your online store:2

quantum thera zinc spray from thrive market

Quantum Thera zinc throat spray from Thrive Market. (click/enlarge)

Vanna, show us the ingredients please (click to enlarge):

thrive market zinc spray ingredients contain gmo soy

I’d like to buy several vowels. Enough to form the words “soy lecithin”. (click/enlarge)

Take note of the soy lecithin (highlighted).  Derived from soybeans, soy lecithin is a natural, safe emulsifier–an additive that lends stability to foods.  The problem for Thrive Market is that almost all soy produced in the United States is genetically modified.3  A quick phone call to Quantum’s customer service department confirmed that the soy in many of their products, including the throat spray sold by Thrive is, in fact, GMO.

So Thrive Market’s promise of a GMO-free store falls as flat as an Olympic pole vaulter who didn’t realize his shoestrings were tied together before setting off on his run.

Thrive Market is selling products with ingredients derived from GMOs.

We could quibble over the fact that the product in question is a throat spray–not a food–but it’s still clearly intended to be ingested:

“A great alternative to yucky-tasting zinc lozenges! In fact, just two spritzes every couple of hours of Thera Zinc Oral Spray is the most effective, tastiest way to deliver ionizable zinc to your throat. Thera Zinc is sprayed in the back of the mouth, sending powerful nutrients to the areas requiring the most protection.”–Quantum throat spray marketing statement 2

More importantly, Thrive and their misinformed organic backers are intent on ridding the world of GMOs in their entirety, no matter what product they’re found in.  The anti-GMO zealots are horribly wrong about the effect that genetically modified crops have on the environment, wanting them to be removed entirely.  Actually, there are ways in which GMOs are beneficial.  For example, farmers who grow Bt corn are able to use less pesticides.  Regardless,  it’s rather dishonest of Thrive to demonize a perfectly safe crop production method, then sell products derived using that same method to their customers.

And, having said this, we must pause and state in the strongest possible terms that there is nothing harmful in Quantum’s zinc throat spray.  This is just another small business trying to eke out a living that, unfortunately, got caught up in the tangled web of a $39 billion organic food industry using fear to market their products as “better”.  There’s nothing superior, in any way imaginable, about organic products compared to their GMO counterparts.  However, Quantum did tell me that they hope to eventually switch over to non-GMO soy.  This saddens me.  Yet another company bows to the irrational demands of a public that doesn’t realize how easily they’re being manipulated.

Hold On, It Gets Worse
Alert label readers may have noticed the company’s misspelled “Proplylene Glycol” [sic] next to the soy lecithin on the product label.  They’re actually talking about propylene glycol, a harmless additive with a wide range of uses, including as surfactants and preservatives.

Woe unto Thrive Market, however, as they label propylene glycol as a dangerous endocrine disruptor in another of their hilariously bad scare pieces.  In “Five Simple Pro Tips for Perfect Skin”,4 author Lauren Whitehouse warns readers to not allow “toxic” propylene glycol to touch their skin via cosmetics.  Yet we now find Thrive Market literally trying to shove this so-called poison down our throats.  Well, OK, spray it down our throats.  Don’t worry though:  just like GMO soy, propylene glycol is harmless.  As intimated by Pinocchio in the opening graphic, Thrive and their backers aren’t exactly behind honest with us.

From whence comes so much of Thrive Market’s bad science and resulting hypocrisy?  One culprit seems to be the pseudoscientific Environmental Working Group, a special interest group that does no real research but is oft-cited by Thrive as a scientific authority.  It turns out that EWG may have more of a financial stake in Thrive and other organic markets than meets the eye.  Check back tomorrow, and I’ll start laying it out for you.

 

References
(1) Thrive Market’s GMO-free Promise
https://thrivemarket.com/gmo-free

(2) Quantum Zinc Throat Spray
https://thrivemarket.com/quantum-thera-zinc-throat-spray

(3) USDA: Adoption of Genetically Engineered Crops in the United States
http://www.ers.usda.gov/data-products/adoption-of-genetically-engineered-crops-in-the-us/recent-trends-in-ge-adoption.aspx

(4) Five Simple Pro Tips for Perfect Skin
https://thrivemarket.com/blog/skin-dos-donts

 

Image Credits
Thrive and  Quantum product/screen snapshots are used in strict accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, commonly known as “fair use law”. This material is distributed without profit with the intent to provide commentary, review, education, parody, and increase public health knowledge.

Pinocchio and Wheel of Fortune meme characters are used under parody provisions of Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, commonly known as “fair use law”. This material is distributed without profit with the intent to provide commentary, review, education, parody, and increase public health knowledge.

PABAble Cause: A “Carcinogen” From Dr. Axe

axefeature copy

When we last visited our good friend Josh Axe, he was hard at work selling antimatter-laden miracle dirt to unsuspecting customers, with the claim it would sweep toxins out of their bodies while simultaneously delivering vital nutrients. (Yes, I was confused too.)

Today I’d like to take a look at another product being peddled by “Dr.” Axe. If you read to the end, I can guarantee you’ll be outraged.  The hypocrisy could not be more blatant.

The topic of the day–and don’t be scared by the long words–is para-aminobenzoic acid (PABA).  Let’s start off with Josh Axe giving us a quick backgrounder on PABA:1

“A recent study published in Environmental Science Technology has also shown the common sunscreen ingredients oxybenzone, methoxycinnamate, and PABA are estrogenic chemicals linked to cancer. That’s right, I read the labels on not only my food products, but on anything I’m putting on or near my body, and you should too.” 1

(Emphasis mine.)  So PABA is an “estrogenic chemical linked to cancer”, Josh?  Hold that thought, and let’s go shopping at draxe.com.  You might want to put on some older clothing. This is going to get messy.

Here’s a nice vitamin B supplement:2

dr axe vitamin b

Dr. Axe Vitamin B supplement. (click/enlarge)

If you’ve read my blog before, having seen me highlight Josh’s disdain for PABA followed by a screen snapshot of a product he’s selling, you’ve probably guessed where this article is heading.  You won’t be disappointed.  Time to have a look-see at what’s actually in the supplement Axe is hawking:2

paba in dr axe vitamin b complex

Dr. Axe’s supplement contains PABA (para-aminobenzoic acid), the very same compound he just linked to cancer. (click/enlarge)

Oh, good grief…  this supplement contains PABA!  Para-aminobenzoic acid.  The cancer-causing boogeyman of Josh Axe’s nightmares: on sale now for only $39.99 on the Dr. Axe web site (you save $11.25!).

This would almost be comical if not for the fact that in the same sentence in which Axe attacked PABA, he said:

“That’s right, I read the labels on not only my food products, but on anything I’m putting on or near my body, and you should too.”1

So there you have it.  Here’s a chiropractor/”natural medicine doctor” who warns his followers to avoid putting a chemical on their bodies due to cancer concerns, sells them that very same compound in a supplement they’re supposed to ingest, and in the same breath tells them he reads product labels to avoid putting dangerous product on or in his body.

The mind boggles.

 

Image Credits
Josh Axe product and website screen snapshots are used in strict compliance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 of United States copyright law (commonly known as “fair use law”). This material is distributed without profit with the intent to provide commentary, review, education, parody, and increase public health knowledge.

Axe “look at that” parody by the author.  Created and used under parody/education/public health knowledge provisions of Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 of United States copyright law (commonly known as “fair use law”).

References
(1) 75% of Sunscreens Are Toxic: What To Do Instead
http://draxe.com/75-of-sunscreens-are-toxic-what-to-do-instead/

(2) Dr. Axe Vitamin B Complex
https://store.draxe.com/collections/supplements/products/vitamin-b-complex

Anti-GMO “Natural Society” Links Formaldehyde To Cancer–But Sells Formaldehyde

Recently I wrote about the so-called Natural Society’s hypocrisy in criticizing cellulose as indigestible food filler while at the same time using it in the dietary supplements they sell.  This offense is minor compared to the gaffe they’ve committed in their virulent anti-GMO campaign.

The Natural Society doesn’t like formaldehyde. I mean, they really don’t like formaldehyde.2,3  Ranting about the supposed natural production of this compound by GMO soy, author Christina Sarich terrifies readers with tales of an IARC Group 1 carcinogen skulking in their food, while compatriot Patrick Gallagher warns that even the vapor content is so dangerous it should be avoided.

So:  why is the Natural Society selling formaldehyde to their followers?

Don’t believe me? Let’s visit the Natural Society online store. Here’s a nice 8-ounce jar of Sombra Pain Relieving Gel:

Sombra Pain Relieving Gel from the Natural Society

Sombra Pain Relieving Gel from the Natural Society. (click/enlarge)

 

The list of ingredients seems innocent at first, but I’ve highlighted something interesting:

Sombra ingredients

Sombra contains sodium hydroxymethylglycinate, aka a “formaldehyde releaser.” (click/enlarge)

As Winnie the Pooh is famous for saying: “Oh, bother!”.  Sodium ‘hydromethylglycinate’, the preservative in Natural Society’s Sombra gel, is either accidentally or intentionally misspelled.  We can go to the Sombra web site and confirm it’s actually sodium hydroxymethylglycinate:  a compound known as a “formaldehyde releaser.”

As you might guess from the name, a formaldehyde releaser slowly releases formaldehyde into a product over time.  The purpose is to act as a preservative, deterring the growth of bacteria, fungi, and other undesired “guests.”  Here’s the correctly-spelled ingredient list, courtesy the Sombra web site:11

Sombra's ingrdient list

Natural Society either accidentally or intentionally misspelled one of the ingredients.  Here’s the correct ingredient list, straight from the manufacturer. (click/enlarge)

For a small fee, the Natural Society could have gone through PubMed or PubChem and purchased access to one of the many papers confirming their favored preservative’s role in releasing formaldehyde into the product they’re selling.5,6,7 It cost me just $6.00 and 15 minutes of reading time to learn about sodium hydroxymethylglycinate in “Formaldehyde-releasers in cosmetics: relationship to formaldehyde contact allergy”: 5

sodium hydroxymethylglycinate

Sodium hydroxymethylglycinate, excerpt from “Formaldehyde-releasers in cosmetics: relationship to formaldehyde contact allergy.”5

 

But it gets worse.  Like so many other snake oil peddlers on the internet, Natural Society quotes the non-science-based Environmental Work Group (EWG) at every drop of the hat.8,9  And even EWG pegged the formaldehyde releasing capabilities of sodium hydroxymethylglycinate.10

So where did Natural Society go wrong?  Was it a lack of research?

“After working to find all of the best brands in the industry, we settled on Sombra’s Cool Therapy gel after over an entire year of testing and research.” 4

Whoa.  An entire year of testing and research, and they missed the formaldehyde?

Or did they?

Remember Christina Sarich, the Society writer/formaldehyde-hater we discussed at the beginning of this article?  Here she is again, writing for the Natural Society on  the subject of toxic formaldehyde releasers in skin care products:

“Furthermore, many face and body soaps contain ‘antibiotic cleansers’ like Triclosan. What else? Benzethonium chloride, artificial colorants, BHA, BHT, silicone derived emollients, parabens, and Formaldehyde releasers [DMDM hydantoin diazolidinyl urea, Imidazolidinyl urea Sodium hydroxymethylglycinate, N-(Hydroxymethyl) glycine, monosodium salt, and quaternium-15]. YUCK!”12

Holy GMO-free sh*t!  The same author who writes about the dangers of carcinogenic formaldehyde in GMO food also warns about it avoiding in skin care products–then turns around and sells it to you.

And all of this after an entire year of testing and research.  Cojones the size of Texas!  But I weep for the masses who hand their hard-earned money to businesses like this.

I weep.

 

Revision history:  corrected spelling of cojones (10 Dec 2015);

corrected title of reference (6) (12 Dec 2015)

 

 

 

Image Credits
Natural Society, Sombra screen and product snapshots are used in strict compliance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 of United States copyright law (commonly known as “fair use law”). This material is distributed without profit with the intent to provide commentary, review, education, parody, and increase public health knowledge.

Sodium hydroxymethylglycinate, from “Formaldehyde-releasers in cosmetics: relationship to formaldehyde contact allergy. Part 1. Characterization, frequency and relevance of sensitization, and frequency of use in cosmetics” 5, used under Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 of United States copyright law (commonly known as “fair use law”) with the intent of providing education.

References
(1) Study: GMO Soy Accumulates Cancer-causing Formaldehyde
http://naturalsociety.com/study-gmo-soy-accumulates-cancer-causing-formaldehyde/

(2) New Study: GMO Soy Accumuluates Cancerous Formaldehyde
http://naturalsociety.com/new-study-gmo-soy-accumulates-cancerous-formaldehyde/

(3) Styrene and Formaldehyde Use Causing Health Complications
http://naturalsociety.com/styrene-formaldehyde-use-causing-health-complications/

(4) Sombra Pain Relief Cream on Natural Society Shopping Page
https://shop.naturalsociety.com/product/sombra-cool-therapy-pain-relieving-gel-8-oz

(5) Formaldehyde-releasers in cosmetics: relationship to formaldehyde contact allergy. Part 1. Characterization, frequency and relevance of sensitization, and frequency of use in cosmetics.
Contact Dermatitis. 2010 Jan;62(1):2-17. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0536.2009.01615.x.
de Groot AC1, White IR, Flyvholm MA, Lensen G, Coenraads PJ.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20136875
http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1600-0536.2009.01615.x/abstract  (full text, last accessed 08 Dec 2015)

(6) Sodium Hydroxymethylglycinate
Dermatitis. 2010 Mar-Apr;21(2):109-10.
Russell K1, Jacob SE.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20233550

(7) Sodium hydroxymethylglycinate: a potential formaldehyde-releasing preservative in child products.
Dermatitis. 2009 Nov-Dec;20(6):347-9.
Jacob SE1, Hsu JW.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19958742

(8) Natural Society Quotes EWG: Toxic Flame Retardants in Baby Products
http://naturalsociety.com/toxic-flame-retardants-found-in-80-of-baby-products/

(9) Natural Society Quotes EWG: Glyphosate Doubles Cancer Risk
http://naturalsociety.com/ewg-monsantos-herbicide-chemical-glyphosate-doubles-cancer-risk/

(10) EWG: Sodium Hydroxymethylglycinate
http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/ingredient/706077/SODIUM_HYDROXYMETHYLGLYCINATE_(FORMALDEHYDE_RELEASER)/#

(11) Sombra Gel Ingredients (manufacturer website)
http://www.sombrausa.com/cool-therapy

(12) Five Healthier Swaps for Expensive Toxic Skin Care Products
http://naturalsociety.com/5-cheaper-healthier-swaps-expensive-toxic-skin-care-products/

Axe-idental Poisoning (Josh Axe Debunked)

magical periodic table

How are iron and copper released by bentonite clay while chromium and manganese are targeted and swept away?  Dr. Axe doesn’t sufficiently explain this, but accidentally delves into antimatter and magic in his attempt (see text).

 

So you’ve had another gut-wrenching GMO-free meal at Chi-coli (aka Chipotle) and you’re in need of a quick detox?  Is that what’s bothering you Bunky?  Well set your mind at ease. According to chiropractor and “natural medicine doctor” Josh Axe, all you need to do is eat some dirt.  But not just any dirt.  No, what’s needed here is bentonite clay, a miracle soil that will cleanse and heal the body (get your credit cards ready).1

“Bentonite clay benefits your body by helping to expel many of these toxins [mercury, cadmium, lead, and benzene] and therefore increases immunity and reduces inflammation” 1 — Josh Axe

Golly gee!  I want to know more!

“On top of being able to draw-out toxins from the body, the clay itself has a range of nutrients” 1 — Josh Axe

 

Wait.  Hold on.  Does the clay draw elements out of the body, or put them in?

“When ingested into the body, either in a drink form or by eating the clay, its vitamins and minerals are absorbed similarly to how a supplement would be. Therefore some people use it as a supplement since the clay is a natural source of important dietary nutrients.” 1 –Axe, again

Clay is a source of “important dietary nutrients”, so it puts them into the body?  OK, I’ll bite (no pun intended).  For the sake of argument, let’s take this claim and run with it.  What are the nutritional benefits of bentonite clay, Dr. Axe?1

dr axe bentonite clay

Dr. Axe’s claimed nutritional benefits for bentonite clay include many elements he claims are toxic. (click/enlarge)

 

¡Madre de Dios!  Let’s look at some of the “nutritional elements” I’ve highlighted in the above graphic from draxe.com, and see what the man himself has to say about them:

Mercury exposure, both in one large dose and through low level exposure over time, is linked through scientific data to kidney, brain, urological, fertility, neurological, and renal problems” 2  (emphasis mine)

Low level exposure to mercury over time is linked to some very nasty problems by Axe.  But you’ll find it in the clay he wants you to eat.  The story is even worse with lead:

No level of lead exposure appears to be ‘safe’ and even the current ‘low’ levels of exposure in children are associated with neurodevelopmental deficits.” 3 (emphasis mine)

Axe’s lead quote comes from an article he penned on “toxic” chemicals found in lipstick.  According to him, there’s no safe level of this poisonous element, but you’ll find 1.17mg of lead in each heaping helping tablespoon of his recommended clay.1

Not content with both feet in his mouth, Axe figuratively inserts other remaining body parts as well: in his bentonite clay, you’ll find each and every element I emphasize in his following quote:

The European Union has banned the presence of cadmium, chromium and lead altogether in cosmetics. The Canadian government has set limits for the content of antimony, arsenic, cadmium, chromium, mercury and lead in cosmetics. They’re still trying to determine what levels are avoidable in the manufacturing process.” 3

Why limit the levels of these elements, Dr. Axe?

“While the FDA does limit lead in certain color additives used in cosmetics, it doesn’t set limits on lead in final products.  This is troubling because heavy metals accumulate in the body over time. Low amounts can add up to big effects.3

 

But… but… all of these “heavy metals”, according to you, Dr. Axe, are found in the clay you’re pushing.  But do go on…  what kind of “big effects” can consumers of your super soil expect to experience as the toxins accumulate in their bodies over time?

dr josh axe warns about these metals accumulating over time

Axe issues dire warnings for specific metals accumulating in the body over time.  But each and every metal on this list is found in the bentonite clay he recommends you eat. (click/enlarge)

 

Pot.  Kettle.  Black.

Of course, you could still buy into Axe’s contradictory argument that bentonite clay hunts down and removes these metals from the body.  The problem is, he can’t explain how the good metals are dropped off at the physiological bus stop while the bad ones are picked up by the heavy metal police and carted off to jail without ever passing go.  He makes a hilarious attempt, referencing “positively charged electrons” (that’s antimatter!), but in the end it boils down to magic.  So that I’m not accused of quote mining, I invite you to read his entire article.

Speaking of buying:  Bien sûr, after Axe sings the praises of bentonite clay, he just so happens to have a particular brand he recommends…

dr axe's hidden affiliate link

“Dr.” Axe has a favorite clay–and an undisclosed Amazon.com affiliate link. (click/enlarge)

 

Not only does Axe recommend bentonite, he earns money when you buy it.   In the above image, I’ve highlighted the hidden, encoded Amazon.com affiliate link.  When you’re redirected to Amazon to snag this product, not only does Josh Axe get a cut of the purchase price, he’s also set up to earn commissions on anything else you happen to buy during your shopping session.4,5  Amazon pays out because they’re grateful to Axe for directing you to their web site.  The problem is, legally, the good doctor is supposed to clearly disclose his affiliation when he sends you off to buy–but he never does.

axe hidden link expanded

You can clearly see Axe’s affiliation in the decoded URL (uniform resource locator) after being directed to Amazon.  Axe earns money not only from this purchase, but others you make as well. (click/enlarge)

 

I’ve covered a lot of ground (another dirt pun; sorry) in this piece, and for good reason: there are few things worse, in my humble opinion, than a person hiding behind the title of “doctor” using bad science and fear mongering to sell you products that contain the very same ingredients they’re telling you will harm you.  Here’s a brief recap and, as always, thanks for reading:

  • Axe simultaneously claims bentonite clay both sweeps elements out of your system and puts them in.  Which is it?
  • No scientific explanation is given for the above contradiction.  Axe ascribes near-magical abilities to bentonite, allowing it to hunt down toxins with “positively charged electrons” (antimatter?  WTF?) after coming into contact with water.  Harry Potter would be proud.
  • The so-called doctor’s mastery of chemistry is so poor he can’t differentiate between elements and minerals.
  • The “no safe level of chemical to ingest” mantra could not be more clear in Axe’s writing, yet he proudly lists the levels of each proclaimed toxic chemical in bentonite clay.  Does he ever read his own words and labels?

 

axe unadvertised affiliate link

Help Dr. Axe go on vacation by giving him a cut of all qualifying purchased you make after visiting Amazon.com via his hidden affiliate link.  (click/enlarge)

 

Image Credits
Josh Axe, Redmond Clay, and Amazon.com website screen snapshots are used in strict compliance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 of United States copyright law (commonly known as “fair use law”). This material is distributed without profit with the intent to provide commentary, review, education, parody, and increase public health knowledge.

Snippet of the periodic table of the elements taken from ptable.com and also used under Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 of United States copyright law (commonly known as “fair use law”) with the intent of providing education.  Happy faces poorly drawn by the author.

 

References
(1) 10 Proven Bentonite Clay Benefits And Uses
http://draxe.com/10-bentonite-clay-benefits-uses/

(2) Dangers of Amalgam Fillings
http://draxe.com/dangers-of-amalgam-fillings/

(3) Is Your Lipstick Toxic?
http://draxe.com/is-your-lipstick-toxic/

(4) Amazon.com Affiliate Program Description
https://affiliate-program.amazon.com/

(5) Amazon.com Affiliate Compensation Schedule
https://affiliate-program.amazon.com/gp/associates/join/compensation.html