“Of the 1000 or so people I tested, 100% of them tested positive for glyphosate”
Glyphosate, the active ingredient of the herbicide RoundUp, iseverywhere.
It is in our soil. It is in our water. It is in our food.
In the wake of the landmark $289 million lawsuit ruling that glyphosate gave a man cancer, we are just beginning to get a glimpse of what may be the single greatest health crisis of our time.
However, to fully understand the health implications of glyphosate, we need to start with the basics.
We need to look at why it is such a potent herbicide so we can clearly see how it affects our own biology.
Glyphosate is essentially a variation on the amino acid glycine.
Its name is derived from its structure. The “Gly” comes from “glycine” and the “phosate” comes from an extra “phosphonomethyl” group that gets attached on to the end.
Glycine is the smallest, simplest amino acid.
This matters because amino acids are the building blocks of all protein.
And protein is just about everything in biology.
Your muscles are protein, so is all your connective tissue, and your cellular structures, digestive enzymes, detoxification enzymes, smooth muscle, organs, cellular receptors, and the bonds between cells that keep toxins and pathogens out.
Your cells are little protein factories, and quality control is far from perfect. Sometimes the wrong amino acid gets put in the wrong place. Usually when this happens, the protein misfolds and gets marked for destruction.
Glyphosate looks like an amino acid, so cells use it like an amino acid. It’s called a “glycine-glyphosate substitution.”
It gets incorporated into proteins. According to Monsanto’s unpublished internal studies released through the Freedom of Information Act, mammals metabolize glyphosate and incorporate into their proteins .
The problem is because glyphosate is so similar to glycine, the protein doesn’t misfold, therefore is not discarded into the cellular garbage can.
To your cell, the glyphosate proteinlooks fine… it just doesn’t function properly.
Glyphosate’s weed-killing action is entirely due to the disruption of a single enzyme.
All the millions and millions of gallons of RoundUpflooding the world every single year are all to stop one enzyme: 5-enolpyruvylshikimate 3-phosphate synthase, or EPSP-Synthase.
This enzyme is essential to a plant’s survival.
It is the critical link in a biochemical process that creates the “aromatic amino acids” (amino acids with a ring attached): phenylalanine, tryptophan, and tyrosine. 
Every plant dies without the ability to make these 3 critical amino acids.
What’s interesting about these 3 amino acids, is that humans can’t make them. We call them “essential amino acids,” meaning we have to get them from our diet––mostly from plants.
Therefore Monsanto claims that because humans don’t have this particular enzyme, glyphosate is safe for use.
But there is one glaring problem here:
Humans are made of amino acids. The same glycine-glyphosate substitution happens in our bodies.
But before we get into details of how this is a problem, let’s look a little deeper at how glyphosate works.
Enzymes work by creating an “active site” that catalyzes a chemical reaction
For EPSP-Synthase the active site is a small “pocket” created by glycine. Glycine’s small size makes the space for the biochemical magic to happen.
However, if a cell accidentally uses a glyphosate molecule instead of glycine, that extra “phosate” group fills up the pocket and blocks the active site.
Without an active site, the reaction cannot happen. It’s like someone changing the lock on your door; the key just won’t fit.
When this happens to the EPSP-Synthase enzyme, the plant (or bacteria or fungi) cannot make the amino acids it needs to function and the organism dies .
This raises a new question: if cells really use glyphosate like glycine, wouldn't we see it in other places also?
Wouldn’t it cause more problems in other areas associated with glycine?
The anwer points to some of the most mysterious and tragic epidemics of our time.
Giant Agribusinesses spray millions of pounds of RoundUp on corn and soy intended for livestock.
The glyphosate in the feed accumulates in the animal tissue and bones.
This same connective tissue is used to makegelatin, a key ingredient in processed foods, cream cheese, frosting, non-dairy creamer, baked goods, candy, cosmetics, gelcaps of capsules, “low fat” food products, and even “health products” like conventional bone broth and glucosamine.
Glyphosate contamination goes far beyond agriculture.
Collagen contains the highest concentration of glycine of any protein: nearly 35% glycine by weight.
And what do we see with glyphosate?
Again, Monsanto’s internal studies reveal glyphosate accumulates the most in connective tissue and bones .
Collagen is the single most abundant protein in our body. It makes the fascia between your internal organs, makes your skin supple, protects your joints, and forms your ligaments.
Its structure forms a tight, springy helix, which holds water as a cushion.
When glyphosate is substituted for glycine, the structure loses its shape. The elasticity and strength become compromised. The joints lose their cushion.
This is very likely to create chronic joint pain––one of the core drivers of the opioid epidemic in the U.S. 
Collagen is also a critical player in gut issues, including inflammatory bowel disease and irritable bowel syndrome. If collagen is malformed, gut function is also likely to be disrupted .
A healthy gut is a thriving ecosystem of trillions of bacteria. These bacteria perform thousands of critical functions for your health. Everything from digesting food to making neurotransmitters, to keeping pathogens in check and regulating your immune system.
And many of these bacteria have the exact same enzyme as plants: EPSP-Synthase.
Glyphosate kills these beneficial bacteria the same way it kills plants.
Once these bacteria die off, the delicate balance of the microbiome is disrupted and pathogens like candida andsalmonella begin to take over .
Once the microbiome is out of balance, immunity, brain function, and energy levels are all compromised.
Much like EPSP-Synthase, certain digestive enzymes also have glycine in a critical site for their action.
This includes a digestive enzyme calledtrypsin, which has a special structure called a “glycine hinge.”
Trypsin helps break down large globular proteins like casein in milk and gluten in wheat.
When trypsin malfunctions, these proteins pass into the lower digestive tract undigested, where they cause intestinal inflammation.  This leads to the release of a compound called zonulin. Zonulin breaks down the tight junction between intestinal cells––normally a strong barrier between the digestive tract and the rest of your body.
Not only is zonulin released, but a new study showed that glyphosate itself breaks down the tight junctions of the intestinal wall .
This breakdown is also known as “leaky gut.”
Leaky gut, in turn, leads to a systemic immune response that can create a confusing variety of symptoms. Some of them include food allergies, autoimmune conditions,and many other health problems.
Myosin is the movement protein.
It is at the core of muscle contraction and is essential forgut peristalsis.This is the slow, automatic contractions of the gut that move food and waste through the digestive tract.
And glycine sits at a very important location in this protein.
One study demonstrated if glycine is substituted with the amino acid alanine, myosin stops working . They also found that if only 2% of myosin proteins in a muscle fiber are altered with alanine, the muscle fiber loses 50% of it’s contracting capacity.
If glyphosate made the same substitution, the peristalsis would be severely compromised, resulting in constipation and further dysbiosis symptoms, potentially including SIBO.
Many of the issues described above are often present in autistic children. 
50-80% of autistic individuals have a “paralyzed gut.” The normal mechanisms of peristalsis simply don’t function.
It is also common for them to experience muscle wasting: their muscles don’t work.
Both of these are functions of myosin.
Also, their gut flora often lack many of the most beneficial bacteria strains, especially bifididiumstrains.
Many leading researchers, including MIT researcher Dr. Stephanie Seneff, now point to glyphosate as the common connection between dysfunctional myosin, gut paralysis, microbiome dysbiosis, autism and other cognitive impairments .
Another class of enzymes that depend on glycine are called CYP enzymes, also known as cytochrome P 450 enzymes . These enzymes are mostly present in the liver where they help the body breakdown toxins and harmful chemicals.
Glyphosate inhibits CYP .
Losing function of these enzymes amplifies effects of other environmental toxins. The long term negative effects of impaired detox range from obesity to cancer to autoimmunity to neurodegenerative disease [12,13]
This is only the beginning. If we look for other potential health issues with glycine-dependent proteins, glyphosate may be implicated in the massive increase in Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, autoimmune conditions, infertility, and cancer.
Glyphosate is the most used pesticide in the history of the world. Agribusinesses and farmers sprayed 300 million pounds of RoundUp in 2016 alone. Over 8.6 billion pounds worldwide since it was introduced in 1974––nearly 75% of that in just the last 10 years.
The bioaccumulation in our food supply, in our soil, in our water, is pervasive.
The effects of glyphosate take time to show, but are immensely toxic. And this chemical iseverywhere, including inside your body.
So what can you do to protect yourself?
The best option is prevention by avoiding exposure as much as possible. Here are 4 steps you can take to minimize your exposure to glyphosate:
Glyphosate is already in our bodies. It’s unavoidable. To help mitigate the toxic effects here are 4 proactive steps you can take to detoxify and protect itself:
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The following is adapted from The Search for the Perfect Protein.
At our clinic, the LifeWorks Wellness Center, we have many clients—male and female—who have problems with low energy, depression, and insomnia. With these patients, we’ll measure neurotransmitter levels, which include serotonin, dopamine, GABA, glutamate, epinephrine, and norepinephrine. The results tell the same story:
Symptomatic patients have neurotransmitter levels far below the optimal standards.
Even when patients have been given prescription psych medications by their doctor, their levels remain low because the drugs do not correct the underlying cause.
Back in 1931, a German biochemist by the name of Otto Warburg won the Nobel Prize. He discovered that cancer grows without oxygen.
But in his research into cancer respiration, he noticed something rather interesting.
He found that all cells have a voltage, just like a battery. What’s more, he noticed that the cancer cells had a much weaker voltage than healthy cells.
Almost the polar reverse! He knew there must be a connection, but his investigations continued into respiration and oxygen, leaving his remarkable discovery a mere scientific oddity.
The following is adapted from The Search for the Perfect Protein.
If you’ve ever heard of amino acids—which help the body make protein—you may have heard of essential amino acids. What, exactly, makes these amino acids essential?
More importantly: why should you care about them? That’s what we’re going to unpack in this article: what essential amino acids are, how they work, and why it matters.