How Can Food Babe Sell Carrageenan So Cheaply? It’s Simple: Volume!

food babe holistic healthcare carrageenan meme

The calendar on the wall says it’s Friday!  That’s payday here at Bad Science Debunked headquarters, which means it’s time for a crowd favorite: another group shopping trip to FoodBabe.com.  Vani Hari, the “Food Babe”, earns a sales commission from purchases we make on Amazon.com after visiting her web site, even if she didn’t recommend the products.  It’s rewarding to have an altruistic science researcher like Vani throwing her weight around.  A portion of each purchase goes to help struggling penguin colonies at the North Pole.** Or something like that.

Food Babe loves Aubrey Organics and John Masters hair care products and raves about the effects they have on her shiny mane.1  Not coincidentally, the blogger who has been caught selling over thirty-six items that contain the same ingredients she says will kill you also happens to feature both companies prominently on her FoodBabe.com shopping page.2

food babe love john masters hair care

Food Babe loves John Masters. (click/enlarge)

But Vani Hari hates carrageenan. Apparently confusing the safe food additive with degraded carrageenan, she falsely links it to cancer.  Oh, and don’t get any of this so-called toxic substance on your skin! Vani adamantly tells whoever is listening (and many who are patiently trying not to) that toxins in beauty products will be absorbed by the skin, the body’s largest organ.6,7  But hey!  Have you heard Hari talk about John Masters and Aubrey Organics hair care products?  They’re the bomb!

food babe aubrey organics hair care

Food Babe adores Aubrey Organics. (click/enlarge)

 

I see someone in the back of the room raising their hand excitedly.  You know what’s coming, don’t you?

Both John Masters and Aubrey Organics use carrageenan liberally in their product lines.

Yes, this is Food Babe, so hypocrisy is the order of the day.  Let’s have a look at some products and the Babe’s sales pitches for them, shall we?  Here are the ingredients for John Masters Honey and Hibiscus Shampoo:3

Food Babe Holistic Hair Care John Masters

John Masters Honey and Hibiscus Shampoo ingredients.  Spelling error is the vendor’s  (click/enlarge)

Carrageenan!  Even though John Masters misspelled it, there’s carrageenan in this shampoo.  But Vani Hari says this is a toxin!  Food Babe, could you enlighten us on the John Masters hair care products that you claim to have so carefully researched?

“John Masters hair products are simply spectacular”–Vani Hari2

“Spectacular” is certainly one way of describing a skeleton in your own closet, isn’t it?

It doesn’t get much better with Aubrey Organics.  Your honor, the prosecution would like to submit into evidence a bottle of Camelia Shampoo:4

food babe holistic hair care aubrey organics

Aubrey Organics Camelia Shampoo. (click/enlarge)

As Homer Simpson would say, “Doh!”  There’s carrageen in this Food Babe product as well, and she claims it’s carcinogenic.   But remind the audience… how do you feel about Aubrey Organics products, Vani?

Aubrey Organics Hair Care – They have the most fantastic products that are all safe!–Vani Hari1

“There is a safe shampoo and conditioner for every type of hair from Aubrey”–Vani Hari2

Food Babe throws out accusations of “toxins” with all the care of a cartoon character tossing a boomerang into air and turning to grin at the camera.  We all know what’s coming.  The loud “thunk!” is the sound of the Babe’s words cycling around to strike her in the back of the head.  She essentially claims the products sold on her web site can cause cancer.

“One of the findings has to do with a carcinogenic ingredient all these products have in common, a substance derived from red algae called carrageenan” (emphasis mine)–Vani Hari8

Oh dear.  Better not get anything containing carrageen on your skin.  Educate the masses, Vani:

“Your skin is your largest organ!  What you put on your skin, is absorbed into your blood.”–Vani Hari9

But fear not.  There’s nothing dangerous about carrageenan or the shampoos offered by John Masters or Aubrey Organics.  Buy them with wild abandon.

Just don’t buy from Food Babe.

Postscript
I’ve purposely omitted Aubrey Organics Honeysuckle Shampoo, singled out by Food Babe  as a featured item in her online shop, because I used that product in my first “reveal” of Hari’s carrageenan sales earlier this week.5  As I pointed out at the time, Vani Hari is demanding that a certain carrageenan vendor retract their factual claim that she’s profiting from fear mongering over this safe compound.  Today, I’m pointing out more Food Babe carrageenan sales to preempt claims from #FoodBabeArmy members who might say that the first catch was just a mistake.

How does Hari hide her hypocrisy from her army?  Observe.  I tweeted her a polite note about the carrageenan:

food babe holistic hair care question

A question for Vani Hari… (click/enlarge)

I received a reply that I must admit was not entirely unexpected:

banned by food babe over hair care

Food Babe blocks those who question or disagree with her. (click/enlarge)

#FoodBabeArmy #EchoChamber

**There are no penguins at the North Pole.

References
(1) Holistic Hair Care: How & Why
http://foodbabe.com/2011/11/06/holistic-hair-care-how-why/

(2) Food Babe Shopping
http://foodbabe.com/shop/for-your-beauty/

(3) John Masters Honey and Hibiscus Reconstructing Shampoo (retrieved 09 Aug 2016)
https://johnmasters.com/products/hair-care/honey-hibiscus-reconstructing-shampoo.html

(4) Aubrey Organics Camelia Shampoo Ingredients (retrieved 09 Aug 2016)
https://www.amazon.com/Aubrey-Organics-Camelia-Shampoo-liquid/dp/B0006GZDEQ

(5) Food Babe Is Selling Carrageenan
https://badscidebunked.wordpress.com/2016/08/09/food-babe-is-selling-carrageenan/

(6) Be A Drug Story Beauty Dropout
http://foodbabe.com/2011/07/31/how-to-find-safe-beauty-products/

(7) So Fresh And So Clean–Skin Care Tips
http://foodbabe.com/2011/08/09/so-fresh-and-so-clean-skin-care-tips/

(8) Watch Out For This Carcinogen In Your Organic Food (FoodBabe.com)
http://foodbabe.com/2012/05/22/watch-out-for-this-carcinogen-in-your-organic-food/

(9) So Fresh And So Clean–Skin Care Tips
http://foodbabe.com/2011/08/09/so-fresh-and-so-clean-skin-care-tips/

 

Image Credits
Food Babe screen captures, John Masters product/ingredient, and Aubrey Organics/Amazon.com product/ingredient images are 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.

“Be Vewy Vewy Quiet” parody by Mark Alsip/Bad Science Debunked.   Partially derived from content based on/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.

 

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Food Babe Is Selling Carrageenan

vani hari sells carrageenan by mark alsip

Vani Hari (the “Food Babe”) is upset about being called out over her blatant profiting from fear mongering regarding carrageenan,1 a safe food and beauty product additive derived from seaweed.  While of course Hari does have a financial interest (she uses fear to drive readers to carrageenan-free products and recipes that she happens to sell2), there’s a larger problem: Food Babe sells products that contain carrageenan.

food babe carrageenan post

Of course Food Babe has a financial interest. But she also SELLS carrageenan. (click/enlarge)

It’s been a while since we last put on our Food Babe Investigator HatsTM and visited Vani Hari’s online store, doing a product investigation according to Hari’s own rules.  Do you remember where you left your hat?  Now would be a great time to fetch it.  Let’s go shopping!

Anyone in the mood for some Honeysuckle Rose Shampoo?3

aubrey organics shampoo from foodbabe.com

Food Babe sells a wide variety of Aubrey Organics products, including Honeysuckle Rose shampoo (click/enlarge)

You just know what’s coming, don’t you?  I confess, I’m not a very good poker player.  I gave it away somewhere, didn’t I?  Perhaps in the title of this article?  Alright then, off to the shampoo’s ingredients:4

overview

Aubrey Organics Honeysuckle Rose shampoo, sold by Vani Hari, contains carrageenan. (click/enlarge)

Did you catch it?

Vani Hari fans who are still in denial, allow me to zoom in:

carrageenan in honeysuckle rose via food babe-ingredients

Lions and tigers and carrageenan! Oh my!

Jesus, Mary, and Joseph: Food Babe is selling carrageenan!

Yes, carrageenan.  When I wrote about Ms. “All Natural Ingredients” selling this shampoo back in December, 2014, it was to point out that although she raved about the fresh honeysuckle in the product she hawked, there wasn’t actually any honeysuckle in it–Aubrey Organics faked it.  Oops.  Since then, they’ve added honeysuckle oil, but also tossed in one of Food Babe’s favorite ingredients: carrageenan.

Thirty-six times and counting, Vani.  You keep selling the very things you tell your followers are dangerous.  

For the #FoodBabeArmy members who would stubbornly insist that The Babe says carrageen is only carcinogenic if you eat it, not when you get it on your hair or skin, I’d point you to her seminal work “So Fresh and So Clean–Skin Care Tips”,5 where your Dear Leader solemnly warns against putting toxic substances on your body, not just in your body:

“Your skin is your largest organ!  What you put on your skin, is absorbed into your blood.”–Vani Hari5

Food Babe very clearly (though disingenuously) tags carrageenan as a carcinogen.2  So what happens if her shampoo dribbles onto your skin while showering?  Let’s ask her:6

” I also don’t like the idea that something I wash my face with can potentially cause cancer over time.”–Vani Hari6

Egad!

In the battle over toxins, Vani Hari stumbles around like a punch-drunk boxer, swinging wildly, essentially punching herself in the face by claiming her own products can cause cancer.  Fortunately, there’s nothing dangerous about carrageenan, Aubrey Organics Honeysuckle Rose Shampoo, or anything Food Babe disparages.  Buy Aubrey Organics products with confidence, just don’t buy them from Food Babe.

(Updated 11 August 2016: For even more carrageenan from Food Babe, see this new story.)

References
(1) Food Babe Facebook Post
https://www.facebook.com/thefoodbabe/posts/1249661371735238:0
Food Babe Store (Aubrey Organics Honeysuckle Rose Shampoo)
http://foodbabe.com/shop/for-your-beauty/

(2) Food Babe: Watch Out For This Carcinogen [Carrageenan] In Your Organic Food
http://foodbabe.com/2012/05/22/watch-out-for-this-carcinogen-in-your-organic-food/

(3) Food Babe Shopping
http://foodbabe.com/shop/for-your-beauty/

(4) Aubrey Organics Honeysuckle Rose Shampoo (Amazon.com)
https://www.amazon.com/Aubrey-Organics-Honeysuckle-Rose-Shampoo/dp/B0006GZAKI/

(5) So Fresh And So Clean–Skin Care Tips
http://foodbabe.com/2011/08/09/so-fresh-and-so-clean-skin-care-tips/

(6) Be A Drug Store Beauty Drop Out
http://foodbabe.com/2011/07/31/how-to-find-safe-beauty-products/

Image Credits
Food Babe screen captures and Aubrey Organics/Amazon.com product images are 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.

“Food Babe Eats Words” parody by Mark Alsip/Bad Science Debunked.  Vani Hari video capture and ABC logo 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.

Gwyneth Paltrow’s “Lethal” Lipstick

gwyneth paltrow lipstick graphic by mark alsip

Of all the celebrities with online stores, perhaps none is more dangerous or hypocritical than Gwyneth Paltrow.  Dangerous because of her scientifically illiterate healthcare stance and the worldwide stage–built by her celebrity status–from which she gets to promote it.  The hypocrisy?  Hoo boy, our cup runneth over with examples.

Paltrow’s web site, Goop.com, is a poorly disguised pseudoscientific version of Amazon.com, hidden behind articles ostensibly giving healthcare advice, but in reality selling products that contain exactly the same ingredients that are claimed to be dangerous.  For example, Goop is riddled with horror stories linking the mere presence of the element aluminum in cosmetics and medicine to a plethora of diseases including cancer, Alzheimer’s, and mental health problems.1,2,3  A specific admonition is to avoid aluminum in lipstick.  Why?  Because:

“[…] to put the importance of safe ingredients in perspective, consider that, unlike the toxins in, say, skin cream, you don’t just absorb what’s in lipstick, you consume it” 1

With all this talk of aluminum, lipstick, and hypocrisy, clever readers have no doubt picked up on the literary device known as foreshadowing.  It’s time to click our way on over to Goop.com and look at the ingredients in the Rituel de Fille Forbidden lipstick on offer there:4

Ricinus communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Carmine [CI 75470], Silica (Silicon Dioxide), Euphorbia Cerifera (Candelilla) Wax, Cera Alba (Beeswax), Carnauba Copernicia Cerifera (Carnauba) Wax, Titanium Dioxide [CI 77891, CI 77019], Aluminum Hydroxide, Stearic Acid, Mica [CI 77019], Iron Oxide [77499], Lavandula angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Glycol, Potassium Sorbate, Hexylene Glycol–Rituel de Fille Forbidden Ingredients (Fortune Teller)4

Oh dear.  Bless Paltrow’s heart!  Aluminum hydroxide is made up of aluminum, oxygen, and hydrogen.

Aluminum (!)

Weren’t we just talking about this?  Gentle reader, here’s Gwyneth’s web site waxing poetic on aluminum:

“I have grave concerns about […] neurotoxic metals like mercury and aluminum3

“Western medicine is hesitant to say that aluminum causes breast cancer, but this toxic heavy metal is found in breast cancer tumors.” 2

“A study out of the University of California-Berkeley School of Public Health found nine toxic heavy metals, including chromium, cadmium, aluminum, and lead in the popular lipstick formulas they analyzed.” 1

That last quote is especially appalling as it appears in the same fluff piece that hawks the Rituel de Fille lipstick.  Yes, in the same article, Paltrow warns readers to avoid lipstick containing aluminum and sells them lipstick containing aluminum.

Talk about a con game.  The celebrity who steams her vagina6 has balls the size of Texas.

rituel de fille goop.com

Two Rituel de Fille colors sold by Paltrow’s Goop.com contain aluminum. The lipstick is  tagged as toxic in the very article that sells it.  (click/enlarge)

It’s easy to miss the banned ingredient if you don’t read the product label for the Fortune Teller shade.  But there’s more:  Like any good poker player who knows she’s up against a weak opponent, Paltrow isn’t afraid to double down when she’s bluffing.  You’ll also find aluminum hydroxide in “Against Nature”, another Goop.com Rituel de Fille offering.5  Not understanding the chemistry or biology behind the aluminum scare (or bothering to read the labels), gullible shoppers quickly fold their hands and open up their pocketbooks. Ka-ching.

In pointing out the hypocrisy of fear mongers with merchandise to sell, I think it’s important to pause and point out that the item itself is not dangerous.  There’s nothing wrong with Rituel de Fille cosmetics, Goop.com’s whining about aluminum to the contrary.  We’re talking about the most common metal in the crust of the Earth, arguably impossible to avoid in the food we eat, the water we drink, and the air we breathe.  Medical experts say that unless you’re suffering from a disease such as kidney failure, the aluminum you encounter in your diet and cosmetics are handled quite well by the body.  I’ve written ad nauseam about this7,8,9,10,11,12 and won’t re-hash it.

As we’ll see in upcoming articles, Rituel de Fille Forbidden lipstick is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to products that contain chemicals Paltrow’s web site claims to be toxic and then pawns off on unsuspecting readers.  If you thought hustlers like Vani Hari, David Avocado Wolfe, and Joseph Mercola were bad, well, as the old Bachman Turner Overdrive song says, “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet”.

References
(1) Full-On—Yet Totally Non-Toxic—Lipstick
http://goop.com/full-on-yet-totally-non-toxic-lipstick/

(2) The Guide to Non-Toxic Deodorant—Plus Our 7 Favorites
http://goop.com/the-guide-to-non-toxic-deodorant-plus-our-7-favorites/

(3) The Roots of Mental Health—Maybe They’re Not In Our Heads
Goop.com Q&A with Kelly Brogan, M.D.
http://goop.com/the-roots-of-mental-health-maybe-theyre-not-in-our-heads/

(4) Rituel de Fille Ingredients: “Fortune Teller”
http://ritueldefille.com/forbidden-lipstick-fortune-teller/

(5) Rituel de Fille Ingredients: “Against Nature”
http://ritueldefille.com/forbidden-lipstick-against-nature/

(6) Steam-cleaning your vagina like Gwyneth Paltrow is not recommended (BBC)
http://www.bbc.co.uk/newsbeat/article/31053429/steam-cleaning-your-vagina-like-gwyneth-paltrow-is-not-recommended

(7) World Health Organization: Aluminum in Drinking Water
http://www.who.int/water_sanitation_health/dwq/chemicals/en/aluminium.pdf

(8) Cancer.gov Antipersperant Fact Sheet
http://www.cancer.gov/about-cancer/causes-prevention/risk/myths/antiperspirants-fact-sheet

(9) Flu Vaccine: The Aluminum Lining
https://badscidebunked.wordpress.com/2014/10/07/flu-vaccine-the-aluminum-lining/

(10) More “Toxic” Ingredients from Naturally Nicole
https://badscidebunked.wordpress.com/2015/11/19/more-toxic-ingredients-from-naturally-nicole/

(11) Naturally Nicole’s Tooth Powder Debunked
https://badscidebunked.wordpress.com/2015/10/16/naturally-nicoles-tooth-powder-debunked/

(12) Food Babe Pushing “Dangerous” Items: Naturally Fresh Deodorant
https://badscidebunked.wordpress.com/2014/12/30/food-babe-pushing-dangerous-items-naturally-fresh-deodorant/

Image Credits
Goop.com and Rituel de Fille screen/product 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.

Opening photo illustration by Mark Alsip/Bad Science Debunked.  Constructed with elements (c) Gwyneth Paltrow/Instagram, Rituel de Fille.  Also 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.

The Food Babe PlayBuzz Quiz #1

food babe quiz meme

 

Well now… you’ve been debunking Vani Hari (the “Food Babe”) for years, and think you know every trick in her book?  The stories of her wanting to pump pure oxygen into airplanes and fearing microwave ovens and the whispering of “Satan” to water are old hat to you?

So what got Hari so excited she jumped up and down like a bunny rabbit high on carrot and beet juice?  Can you recall the circumstances behind her infamous rant about the benefits of wheat grass enemas and chlorophyl being the first product of light?  Did you know the notorious anti-GMO campaigner is selling a GMO product? (Which product is it?)

Curious?  Then challenge your knowledge of Food Babe’s notorious and hilarious gaffes with this 15 question quiz:

Launch Quiz

Image Credits/Copyright Notice
All images displayed in this quiz are 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.

Over Three Dozen Times and Counting, Food Babe Sells Another “Toxic” Product: Tarte MutiplEYE Eye Liner

multiplEYE Vani Hari endocrine disruptors

Vani Hari has been caught selling more than three dozen products featuring the very chemical compounds she warns her followers to avoid.

Happy Friday!  It’s been a while since we’ve taken one of our payday shopping trips to FoodBabe.com.  Admittedly, the shtick has become a little tired.  Lets’ be honest–if GMO-poisoned cats existed, you couldn’t swing one in Food Babe’s online shop without hitting a product that contains the same “dangerous” chemicals she warns her followers to avoid. Hari’s hypocrisy is so obvious to anyone who cares to look that the only possible explanation for how she continues to make money is, clearly:  nobody is bothering to look.

And yet, it’s not in my nature to sit quietly by and watch an unsuspecting public be deprived of their hard-earned money.  So, dear reader, let’s once again point our web browsers at FoodBabe.com and check out another product pushed by Food Babe that is, in her own words, harmful to her readers’ health.

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you: Tart MultiplEYE Eye Liner:1

Tarte Multipleye on FoodBabe.com

Tarte MultiplEYE, for sale on FoodBabe.com1  (click/enlarge)

Vani Hari, who makes her living scouring product labels, would have done well to have read the packaging on an item she’s been hawking on her web site since December, 2013:

foodbabe.com source code for tarte multipleye

Source code behind the FoodBabe.com web site reveals that Food Babe uploaded her Tarte Multipleye content in 2013.  Remember, this is a woman who claims to read all the labels and personally approve every product she sells. (click/enlarge)

Here are the Tarte Multipleye ingredients, per the manufacturer’s statement on Amazon.com2:

Aqua, ethylhexyl acrylate/methyl methacrylate copolymer, butylene glycol,  alcohol, beheneth-30,  ammonium acrylates/methyl styrene/styrene copolymer,  magnesium ascorbyl phosphate,  sodium chloride,  adenosine,  calcium chloride,  myristoyl pentapeptide-17,  soy amino acids, phenoxyethanol, acrylates/octylacrylamide copolymer, pentylene glycol,  1,2-hexanediol,  caprylyl glycol, ethylhexylglycerin,  polyglyceryl-3 disiloxane dimethicone,  sodium hydroxide,  disodium EDTA, black 2 (CI 77266).2

I’ve highlighted one particular ingredient in this list, polyglyceryl-3 disiloxane dimethicone, because of an urgent warning from Vani Hari to stay away from:

Siloxanes. Look for ingredients ending in “-siloxane” or “-methicone.” Used in a variety of cosmetics to soften, smooth and moisten. Suspected endocrine disrupter [SIC] and reproductive toxicant (cyclotetrasiloxane). Harmful to fish and other wildlife.” 3–Vani Hari, “Be a Drug Store Beauty Dropout”

As has happened on nearly 40 occasions since I began writing about Vani Hari, she’s been caught selling an item that contains the same “chemicals” she warns her followers to avoid.  The self-styled “Food Babe” cautions against any additive ending in “siloxane” or “methicone”, then pushes disiloxane dimethicone in a recommended product:

Vani Hari recommends Tarte Multipleye

FoodBabe.com screen snapshot:  Vani Hari recommends Tarte Multipleye

Bless her heart!

Sadly, every time Hari is caught in a scam like this, her followers run to her defense, stopping just short of screaming “shut up with the criticism and let her take my money!”

sagerad food babe

Take my money, please! (click/enlarge)

 

While Food Babe has tried to quietly pull some products from her marketplace in the hope no-one notices they were ever there, she continues to sell others, such as those derived from GMO corn (and we all know how she feels about GMO technology.  Her hidden affiliate links seem to be a clear violation of Amazon.com policies–another problem her adoring followers ignore.   My modest proposal: her web page needs an automobile industry advertisement-style disclaimer:

Professional con artist on closed course.  Do not attempt.

 

Now, of course, there’s nothing toxic about this or any other Tarte product.  This is a reputable company with a solid safety record, and they shouldn’t be punished for Hari’s double standards.  The only bone I’ve ever had to pick with Tarte is their refusal to discuss the source of the soy in their products (shades of another GMO nightmare for Tarte Champion Vani Hari, who already contradicts herself by selling a product derived from GMO corn).  No, the real problem here is that Vani Hari, who touts herself as an avid label reader and consumer advocate, apparently can’t be bothered to investigate the very products from which she’s earning sales commissions, even though she says:

[this] shop contains affiliate links for products Food Babe has approved and researched herself. ” 1

Apparently research doesn’t involve reading the label of what you’re selling, Vani?

 

Image Credits
Food Babe screen captures and Tarte product images are 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.

References
(1) Food Babe Shopping Page
http://foodbabe.com/shop/for-your-beauty/

(2) Tarte Multipleye on Amazon.com
https://www.amazon.com/Tarte-MultiplEYE-Enhancing-Liquid-Liner

(3) Be a Drug Store Beauty Dropout
http://foodbabe.com/2011/07/31/how-to-find-safe-beauty-products/

Food Babe: Just Label It :-)

As Vani Hari (the “Food Babe”) gloats over a nonsensical GMO labeling victory in which she arguably had no involvement, my nominee for the World’s Greatest Hypocrite award continues to pull the wool over the eyes over the collective sheep following her: This November, Food Babe will mark her sixth year as a seller of products derived from GMO corn.

revolution food babe facebook gmo

Food Babe calls for a labeling revolution, but what about the GMO products SHE sells? (click/enlarge)

As I’ve pointed out numerous times, Clean Well Hand Sanitizer, which Hari hawks on her shopping page, is made with GMO corn.  Food Babe has been selling this product for over five years, and the GMO-sourced corn has been very clearly pointed out to her time after time.  How can you rant against GMOs and simultaneously sell products made with them?  Oh, your name is Vani Hari.

To be sure, there is nothing to fear from GMOs.  The entire labeling campaign, sponsored in large part by the $39 billion (2014 figures) organic food industry, is a clear attempt to demonize a competitor’s products in order to sell your own.  Not surprisingly, Hari stands to benefit greatly from GMO labeling.  Except… except that she’s selling so many products that contain the very ingredients she says are dangerous: like this hand sanitizer with the GMO corn.  #JustLableIt Vani!  Or quietly pull it from your storefront, like you did the BHT you were selling during your anti-BHT campaign, or the cellulose during your anti-cellulose campaign, or the artificial dyes and endocrine disruptors that…

Oh, wait.  You haven’t pulled all the artificial dyes yet.   You’re still selling them to children, along with an organic pesticide.  I’m sure you’ll get around to addressing that.  Eventually.  Maybe.

cleanwell FOOD BABE

JUST LABEL IT VANI.  Food Babe claims GMOs are toxic and bad for the environment, but it hasn’t stopped her from selling a product made with GMO corn for over 5 five years.

Vani Hari deserves to be called out on this. The net result will likely only be her quietly pulling the product from her online store and denying it ever existed, but why not try?  Suggested Twitter hashtags: #FoodBabeArmy, #FoodBabeWay, #PotKettleBlack, and #GMO.

Oh, and how about #JustLabelIt?  😉

cleanwell hand sanitizer vani hari

Based on the upload date of her product image, we can deduce Food Babe has been selling her GMO-laden hand sanitizer since November, 2011.  (click/enlarge)

Dr. Mercola Brand Facial Cleanser Contains Pesticide

mercola

Dr. Joe Mercola is infamous for his zero tolerance policy on “harmful” chemicals (read: those not sold via his online store).  He’s pontificated about clearing an entire building due to a mercury spill smaller than the size of a tooth filling, so I find it ironic that after writing nearly three dozen articles on pesticide dangers, he’s selling a personal care product that contains…. wait for it… a pesticide.

Surprised?  You shouldn’t be.  Grab your credit cards and breathing gear.  It’s time for a shopping trip to Mercola.com.

Why look!  Here’s a nice bottle of organic facial cleanser:1

mercola facial cleanser

Let’s let doctor Mercola himself describe some of the key ingredients in this product:

dr mercola organic facial cleanser

Partial ingredients list for Mercola’s facial cleanser, according to Mercola.com. (click/enlarge)

 

Neem oil is really interesting.  Mr. Mercola, if you’d be so kind as to elucidate:1

“Neem oil is the unique ingredient which makes Daily Facial Cleanser clearly stand out.”–Mercola.com

Neem oil stands out, indeed:  It’s a pesticide used in organic farming!  You can pop over to your local lawn and garden shop and pick up a bottle during halftime of next weekend’s football game and be home in time to kill off a large population of the creepy crawlies in your back yard:

Neem oil, found Mercola's facial cleanser, is an organic pesticide (insect killer). (click/enlarge)

Neem oil, featured in Mercola’s facial cleanser, is an organic pesticide (insect killer). (click/enlarge)

If Mercola was here to defend himself, no doubt he’d say this is an all-natural, organic pesticide, and that it’s been used for centuries in folk medicine, with no ill effect. Except there have been ill effects:

“Twelve children were admitted with convulsions and altered sensorium following ingestion of locally obtained neem oil.  Ten died within 24 hours.”–Indian Journal of Pediatrics 2

and…

“This report highlights the toxicity associated with neem oil poisoning in an elderly male. […]  In the emergency department, the patient developed generalized convulsions with loss of consciousness. “–Indian Journal of Critical Care Medicine 3

There are a lot more examples.  Don’t believe me?  Spend some time on PubMed.  True, neem oil can be refined to remove toxic components, but given Mercola’s aversion to refining natural compounds, that isn’t likely a recipe he’d find palatable.

But I’m not here to do Mercola’s research for him.   My goal is to simply point out that the fear mongering de facto king of snake oil salesmen rants, ad nauseam, about pesticide use and then, without blinking an eye, uses a known insecticide in one of his facial care products.  For the record, Mercola isn’t the only pesticide-hater hawking neem oil. His compatriot, the Food Babe, does so as well–in a children’s product!

This isn’t the first time we’ve caught Dr. Joe vending products that contain chemicals (or classes of chemicals) he says are dangerous.  Who can forget the dozen or more highly toxic chemicals in his Himalayan Pink Salt (lead or mercury for breakfast, anyone?), or the Joe-Banned sweetener in Mercola Brand protein bars?

When will the public catch on to the fact that these health care gurus are taking them on an costly, extravagant ride?  At first glance, the answer might seem to be “never”:  Mercola has over one million followers, and most seem to be so indoctrinated that no amount of evidence is ever going to sway them.

I have a more optimistic outlook, however.  There are billions of people who have never heard of Joseph Mercola.  Think of them as unvaccinated, and Mercola as a virus.  Now, what if skeptics such as you and I are a verbal vaccine?  If we can reach out to the uninfected–those who have never been shopping at Mercola.com–and warn them about what they’re going to find there, perhaps we can build up a measure of immunity and save them from this nonsense.

Food for thought.

Oh, anyone need any facial cleanser?

neem oil is a common organic pesticide

Neem oil has many uses, including the killing of annoying insects and, apparently, cleaning your face.   (click/enlarge)

Image Credits
Mercola.com screen snapshots and product image captures 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.

Commercial neem oil pesticide product image captures 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.

Mercola in the garden parody image by the author, used under parody provisions of Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 of United States copyright law.

References
(1) Organic Daily Facial Cleanser–Mercola.com
http://shop.mercola.com/product/organic-daily-facial-cleanser,1030,488,0.htm

(2) The Indian Journal of Pediatrics
May 1982, Volume 49, Issue 3, pp 357-359
N. Sundaravalli, B. Bhaskar Raju M.D., K. A. Krishnamoorthy M.D. (1)
http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2FBF02834422

(3) Neem oil poisoning: Case report of an adult with toxic encephalopathy
Indian J Crit Care Med. 2013 Sep-Oct; 17(5): 321–322.
Ajay Mishra and Nikhil Dave
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3841499/