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ROUNDUP: Impacts Of Glyphosate On Human Health & It’s Association With Modern Disease

In the modern world of the industrial revolution, industrial agriculture, and manufacturing toxins are dumped into the environment at alarming rates. Monsanto’s Roundup which contains Glyphosate has been a widely controversial topic over the past years. Activists, anti-GMO campaigns, propaganda and heated debates are published all over the internet on what glyphosate is doing to our exposome and genome.

What Is Glyphosate and where is it used?

Glyphosate (N-phosphonomethylglycine), is the active ingredient found in the herbicide Roundup. Glyphosate was introduced by Monsanto in 1974, to kill weeds by blocking proteins essential to growth. Roundup is the most widely used top selling weed killer today in the United States, Australia and New Zealand as well as the rest of the world; it’s used in agriculture and lawn maintenance. Additionally 80% of the GMO crops world wide especially corn, soy, canola, cotton and sugar are treated with glyphosate.

Why do these toxins effect us so much? Why do some people have more issues than others?

The synergistic effect of toxins, is something rarely studied or looked upon. We don’t measure the effects of all the little toxins our bodies are exposed too. We don’t measure what the concoction (combination of multiple toxins) does to our bodies.

Instead we study for example in roundup, ‘glyphosate’ the main active ingredient. What about all the other constituents in Roundup? Why aren’t these examined?

Our bodies are like a bucket. Toxins we are exposed to enter our bodies may seem small and insignificant but over time the accumulation of toxins aka droplets into the bucket will lead to an overflow. This overflow then results in symptoms, health conditions and issues etc. If you additionally minus the bodies ability to detoxify with a gene impairment then the toxins cannot be detoxified as they should. This is a major issue in our society.

Our genome hasn’t evolved to deal with the amount of toxins our environment. The rate of polymorphism (genetic impairments) has dramatically increased. Detoxification pathways are ‘damaged’ and therefore detoxification of stored toxins is much harder. This is certainly a causative factor to disease and chronic conditions. Looking at our genetic profile to help understand whether our detox pathways are damaged is extremely helpful.

What are the known effects on human health?

Monsanto the manufacture of Roundup state that their product has been sold since the 1970’s and is safe when used as directed. However since the past 35 or so years the hundreds of studies published have addressed the safety of glyphosate. More so most of the studies on glyphosate’s safety are conducted by the manufacturers themselves, this is contradictory in itself.

Studies were published on some of the inert ingredients which created an alarm for the amplified toxic effects on human cells. Inert ingredients are the solvents, preservatives, surfactants and other substances used in the roundup. The tests where done with concentrations more diluted than the roundup found on lawns. Specifically one of the ingredients known as POEA, was more toxic and dangerous to human embryonic, placental and umbilical cord cells than the herbicide itself. Causing problems with hormone production, leading to abnormal fetal development and even miscarriages. The residues found on crops, lawns etc. could cause cell damage and cell death, however it is still a product available to consumers around the globe.

In 2015 the concern of possible health impacts increased after the International Agency for Research on Cancer, from the World Health Organisation classified glyphosate as a probable carcinogen.

Possible cancers linked to glyphosate exposure include non-Hodgkin lymphoma, renal tubule carcinoma, pancreatic islet-cell adenoma, and skin tumors.

Possible cancers linked to glyphosate exposure include non-Hodgkin lymphoma, renal tubule carcinoma, pancreatic islet-cell adenoma, and skin tumors.

Glyphosate impairs the CYP (P450) gene pathway, this gene creates enzymes to help break down and detoxify xenobiotics, like chemicals, drugs, carcinogens, pesticides etc. Glyphosate inhibits these CYP enzymes from working.

However since our CYP pathway is essential for our bodies to function normally, any small change in the gene expression of CYP can lead to major disruptions. It inhibits the natural detoxification process, in turn it disrupts homeostasis, increases inflammation and leads to a deconstruction of the cellular system. Human’s exposed to glyphosate can have decreased levels of an amino acid called tryptophan. This amino acid is necessary for the active signalling of serotonin (a neurotransmitter). Suppressed serotonin levels is associated with multiple disorders/diseases.

According to a study resort done in 2013 by the International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-Biotech Applications, around 70% of the worlds cotton is produced by biotech. Cotton plantations and seeds are contaminated with plenty of glyphosate. A 2015 study found 85% of all cotton products sampled (including tampons, sterile gauzes and so forth) were tested positive for glyphosate. The glyphosate cannot be washed out due to the seeds being contaminated therefore purchasing organic tampons, organic cotton pads is imperative. Sleeping in organic cotton sheets is also important!

Red blood cells showing damage from hemolytic anemia, and one spherocyte

Source: Basic anatomical knowledge

Roundup has found to cause DNA damage to erythrocytes (red blood cells) this was established in a study conducted in 1997 by Clements, Ralph and Petras. Roundup’s surfactant POEA is known to cause haemolysis. Individuals who sustained poisoning to Roundup experiences chest pains, difficulty breathing, impaired cognitive function and impaired blood oxygen transport. The impairment of red blood cell’s ability to transfer adequate oxygen to the brain and body results in problematic tissue perfusion and hypoxia. Poor transport and/or utilisation of oxygen can cause rapid and major neuronal damage.

Effects on your Biome

Glyphosate also has a severe effect on our micro-biome function. Studies have indicated that glyphosate disrupts the microbiome in the intestine, causing a decrease in the ratio of beneficial to harmful bacteria. Thus, highly pathogenic bacteria such as Salmonella entritidis, Salmonellagallinarum, Salmonella typhimurium, Clostridium perfringens, and Clostridium botulinum are highly resistant to glyphosate but most beneficial bacteria such as Enterococcus faecalis, Enterococcus faecium, Bacillus badius, Bifidobacterium adolescentis, and Lactobacillus spp. were found to be moderately to highly susceptible. The relationship between the microbiome of the intestine and overall human health is still unclear, but current research indicates that disruption of the microbiome could cause diseases such as metabolic disorder, diabetes, depression, autism, cardiovascular disease, and autoimmune disease. Once the overload of toxins hits a certain threshold, inflammation sets in and chronic disease/debilitating diseases can establish.

Glyphosate was administered to rats in a study done in the 90s. It was found that the glyphosate was found in their bones seven days after being exposed to the chemical. This raises a question, what might glyphosate do to the health of our bones? Considering glyphosate acts as a fact phosphate in plants.

EPA regulations have a ‘reference dose’ in place, however regardless of what limits are set, glyphosate seeps into our bodies and accumulates resulting in an internal toxic environment.

“Independent scientific studies have shown that Roundup is toxic to earthworms, beneficial insects, birds and mammals, plus it destroys the vegetation on which they depend for food and shelter. Although Monsanto claims that Roundup breaks down into harmless substances, it has been found to be extremely persistent, with residue absorbed by subsequent crops over a year after application. Roundup shows adverse effects in all standard categories of toxicological testing, including medium-term toxicity, long-term toxicity, genetic damage, effects on reproduction, and carcinogenicity.” – https://www.organicconsumers.org

What Does Glyphosate do to our Environment? 

Monsanto claims that the herbicide is biodegradable, environmentally friendly and leaves the soil clean. However a study done by USGS sampled waterways in over thirty states and found glyphosate in the majority of rivers, ditches and streams. The glyphosate attaches tightly to the soil particles, so much for environmentally friendly? Additionally glyphosate is somewhat volatile and a high percentage of rain samples contained glyphosate.

Why aren't we told this? Who is Monsanto?

Monsanto is a publicly traded American agrochemical and agricultural biotechnology corporation. They are the leading procurers of generically engineered seeds (GMO) and of the herbicide glyphosate aka Roundup. In 2011 Monsanto was claimed the most evil corporation in the world. Glyphosate goes hand in hand with GMO; the company produced Roundup ready seeds which are genetically modified to rest the glyphosate. Weeds are expected to die, however the crops are engineered to withstand the chemicals.

What can we do about it?

Several countries in Europe including Denmark and Sweden have already banned/restricted the use of glyphosate herbicides by local authorities. Due to the linked alleged health issues and concerns; not just cancer but also birth defects, kidney failure, celiac disease and autism. SO WHY NOT US?

If you feel like you've been exposed to Roundup or assume a glyphosate toxicity, you can be tested for glyphosate through a test sold via Great Plains Laboratory.

Minimising the exposure is important. There are a few things which can be implemented immediately.

  • Firstly buying your own organic and locally grown produce (NOT GMO). A recent study showed that people eating organic food had considerably lower concentrations of glyphosate in the urine.
  • Growing your own produce, therefore soil contamination is something you can control better.
  • Using non-toxic methods for controlling insects in your home and garden as well as weeds.
  • Closing all windows and doors when a neighbour is spraying Roundup, avoiding chemically treated parks/lawns.
  • Having a no shoes policy at home. Therefore when people walk over a chemically treated lawn the residues are not brought into your home. In some cases, the residues in carpets can last for years.

Healing Sleep

  • Sleeping in organic cotton bed sheets and if possible organic sleep wear. This is very important as you spend around 6-12 hours in constant contact with it. Therefore minimising the contact/absorption of glyphosate through the skin is imperative.
  • Another point would be using organic tampons, pads, bras, and underwear.
  • Drinking clean, osmosis filtered water.



Recommended Detox Products



Safety Evaluation and Risk Assessment of the Herbicide Roundup and Its Active Ingredient, Glyphosate, for Humans

Gary M. Williams, Robert Kroes, Ian C. Munro.

Time- and Dose-Dependent Effects of Roundup on Human Embryonic and Placental Cells
N.Benachour, H. Sipahutar, S. Moslemi, C. Gasnier, C.Travert, G. E. Seralini


Differential effects of Glyphosate and Roundup on Human Placental Cells and Aromatase.
Sophie Richard, Safa Moslemi, Herbert Sipahutar, Nora Benachour and Gilles-Eric Serallini


Chemosphere Volume 61, Issue 8, Dec. 2005, Pages 1115-1122
Comparative effects of the Roundup and glyphosate on mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation

Hietanen, E., K. Linnainmaa, and H. Vainio. 1983. Effects of phenoxy herbicides and glyphosate on the hepatic and intestinal biotransformation activities in the rat. Acta Pharma. et Toxicol. 53:103-112.

(Clements C, Ralph S, Pertas M, 1997.  Genotoxicity of select herbicides in Rana catesbeiana tadpoles using the alkaline single-cell gel DNA electrophoresis (comet) assay. Environ Mol Mutagen 1997; 29(3):277-288.)

(Sawada Y, Nagai Y, Ueyama M, Yamamoto I, 1988. Probable toxicity of surface-active agent in commercial herbicide containing glyphosate.  Lancet. 1988 Feb 6;1(8580):299.)

(US EPA, 1993. EPA Reregistration Eligibility Document, Glyphosate, Office of Prevention, Pesticides and Toxic Substances, Washington, D.C., September 1993.)

(IPCS, 1994.  Environmental health criteria 159: Glyphosate.  International Programme of Chemical Safety, World Health Organization, Geneva.)



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