The Nutrition-Mind Connection
"The fact that Johnnie can't read and that
we have a $200 billion annual national medical bill both stem from the
same cause - a poor delivery of elements from the soil in, both quality
The above statement was made in 1979 by John Hamacker.
It remains true today, except that our national medical bill is now
closer to one trillion dollars per year. Despite the vast resources
of our nation, our health status is deplorable. We rank on a par with
third world nations in this regard due to a virtual plague of degenerative
disease. The situation today is that every third person is allergic
to something; every 5th person is mentally ill; every 30 seconds someone
dies of a heart attack and every 55 seconds someone dies of cancer,
which has now become our #1 childhood killer, barring accidents.
In 1981 Hamaker wrote, "Along with the rest
of the country, Michigan's scholastic achievement scores have been dropping
steadily for two decades." The downward spiral continues - and
it is linked to nutrient deficiency. It is an established and accepted
fact that impaired mental function results from nutrient deficiency.
The brain requires a vast array of nutrients, including vitamins, minerals
and amino acids to produce neurotransmitters (brain chemicals that pass
messages from cell to cell) and other important brain compounds. Altered
brain chemistry can result from deficiency of just a single nutrient,
giving rise not only to diminished mental capacity, but also to mental/emotional
disturbances and behavioral disorders such as hyperactivity, Attention
Deficit Disorder, anxiety, depression, eating disorders (anorexia and
bulimia), drug and alcohol addiction, autism and violence.
If impaired mental function results from nutrient
deficiency, then improving nutritional intake ought to result in improved
mental function. The fact that it does indeed do so was demonstrated
in a study described in a reprint entitled: "The Impact of a Low
Food Additive and Sucrose Diet on Academic Performance in 803 New York
City Schools." In 1980, '81 and '83 major "dietary policy
revisions" were made with regard to the use of sucrose, fats and
food additives. During the 4 year period in which these food factors
were reduced in the diet of the school children, the mean national academic
performance of the 803 schools rose from 41 to 51 percentile. This resulted
in NYC schools moving from 11% below the national average to 5% above
it. A "reduction in malnutrition" was cited by the researchers
as the cause of the rise.
A War Zone
Several years ago I did a lot of substitute teaching.
Entering an elementary school classroom was like going into a war zone.
At break time in the lounge I'd hear teachers complaining about the
behavior and academic performance of their students. They'd discuss
the possible causes and invariably conclude that it must be the influence
of TV - the violence. "TV indeed," I thought to myself, "but
surely it has as much to do with the radiation from the set as the programming
(x-ray emissions from color TPs can result in fatigue, headache, loss
of sleep and hyperactivity in children who view it excessively). And,
how about other major variables: like food, lighting, color?"
The Light Link
Most classrooms, like other institutions, are typically
outfitted with fluorescent lights. Photobiologist John Ott has clearly
demonstrated the adverse effect of such light on behavior and academic
performance in the classroom. The wavelength pattern of fluorescents
is vastly different than that of full spectrum (sun) light. This imbalance
of frequencies has the same adverse effect as an imbalance of nutrients.
Researchers working with laboratory rats have long known that it is
necessary to remove the male rat from the cage before his pregnant mate
gives birth, else he will cannibalize the newborn rats. This occurs
in fluorescently lit environment; however, where full-spectrum bulbs
(which duplicate the wavelength pattern of sunlight) are used, this
will not occur. In fact, Papa Rat will then actually nurture his young!
Can we generalize from such rodent behavior? I think so. Where full-spectrum
lights have been used in the classroom there has been improved general
attendance and behavior, as well as enhanced and academic concentration
Color Me Hyper
And then, there's the color angle: In my day, the
classrooms and corridors were painted a pale "institutional green."
The last time I substituted, the halls were decked out in bright oranges,
pinks and reds. Now, it doesn't take an in-depth knowledge of color
therapy to appreciate the fact that cool colors (blues and greens) are
calming, while warm ones are stimulating. Not only do red hues stimulate,
they can also engender aggressive behavior and agitation - they do,
in fact, over stimulate. The traditional light green, on the other hand,
has not only a calming, but a healing effect (that, no doubt, is why
it is used in hospitals). Color therapy, used intelligently in the classroom
would allow the use of some yellow to stimulate intellectual activity,
but the dominate hues would be cool ones, especially where behavior
Finally, there's the matter of food. School lunches,
like hospital meals, are notoriously inadequate. Yes, they're planned
by a dietitian. Realize, however, that it is the job of the dietitian
to know how many cans of #2 beans it will take to feed 382 mouths: It
is not her job to assure that nutrient-dense foods go into those mouths.
Most institutions (and households) today make widespread use of processed
foods. Food processing procedures like refining, pasteurizing and irradiating
seriously deplete foods of their nutrient content. What's worse is that
the foods are already seriously depleted before they ever get into the
hands of the food processors.
The Bottom Line
This brings us back to John Hamacker's point: Poor
soil quality is the bottom-line common variable responsible for widespread
physical and mental deterioration. Poor soil quality makes for nutrient
deficient crops, which in turn create weak bodies and minds. Diets lacking
in nutrients especially trace minerals - lead not only to physical maladies
and impaired learning, but also to antisocial behavior and even violence.
It's no coincidence that both degenerative disease and crime are escalating,
as IQ and nutritional status decline. These things are connected. And
at the bottom of the chain is the connecting link of impoverished soil.
A Global Problem
From the global village perspective, if the earth's
population was an even 100, then the percentage suffering from malnutrition
would be 50 and the number unable to read would be 70. In this context,
"malnutrition" is defined simply as inadequate food intake.
If we revise that definition to encompass a state brought on by nutritionally
depleted foods, then the percentage of people affected would approach
100. The citizens of our nation do indeed suffer from malnutrition -
high calorie malnutrition. Nutrient depletion of soils is not just a
domestic problem, however; it is a global one. We're all affected. And
each succeeding generation is more deeply affected, resulting in their
increased vulnerability to illness, both physical and mental. In this
country, these results are reflected in an escalating rate of violent
crimes committed by juveniles. It is now estimated by researchers that
juvenile crime will probably double by the year two thousand!
The Juvenile Crime Scene
Over the last 10 years, the number of kids under
18 arrested for homicides has more than doubled. According to FBI statistics,
about 300 parricide (the killing of both parents) incidents occur annually.
Children under 18 represent 17% of all reported arrests, 33.3% of arrests
for "serious" crimes (crimes to property) and 16-17% of arrests
for "major" crimes (crimes to persons). James Fox, dean of
the Criminology Dept. of Northeastern University, predicts that by the
year 2005 there will be 5000 murders per year committed by teens.
This escalating violent crime rate among teenagers
is not due primarily to drugs, broken homes or poverty, but rather to
malnutrition. These kids typically exhibit pronounced deficiencies of
such trace minerals as lithium, chromium and vanadium and are prone
to develop a powerful salt or sugar craving. This craving, accompanied
by licking and chewing behaviors is known as "pica" and it
is brought on by mineral deficiency and corrected only by supplying
the deficient minerals: No other class of nutrients can induce or resolve
the condition. Satisfying the craving by eating commercial sugar or
salt only worsens the situation, for refined sugar and salt leach from
the body the minerals necessary to metabolize them and therefore deepen
the deficiency. The cravings stem from a mineral deficiency that can
only be rectified by providing the needed minerals.
Minerals rule over all other nutrients. Vitamins,
proteins, enzymes and amino acids, as well as fats and carbohydrates,
require them for activity. Trace minerals (such as zinc, copper, chromium)
are those needed in small or trace amounts by the body. They are no
less important to the functioning of the body than are macro minerals
(calcium, magnesium, potassium, sulphur and chlorine), needed in larger
There are 84 known minerals, 17 of which are considered
to be essential in human nutrition. If there is a shortage of just one
of these, the balance of activity in the entire system can be thrown
off. A deficiency of a single mineral can negatively impact the entire
chain of life, rendering other nutrients ineffective and useless.
According to Senate Document #264, 99% of Americans
are mineral deficient. This document was published in 1936! The situation
is even worse today, as minerals continue to disappear from our soils.
Where Have All the Minerals Gone?
Modern agribusiness farming methods, including the
widespread use of N-P-K (nitrogen-phosphorous potassium) fertilizer,
over farming, loss of protective ground cover and trees, lack of humus
- these are some factors that have made soils vulnerable to erosion
(through drought, wind and flooding). The result is reduced nutrient
content of crops.
N-P-K fertilizer is highly acidic. It disrupts the
pH (acid/alkaline) balance of the soil, as does acid rain. Acid conditions
destroy soil microorganisms. It is the job of these microorganisms to
transmute soil minerals into a form that is usable by plants. In the
absence of these microbes, these minerals become locked up, unavailable
to the plant. Stimulated by the N-P-K fertilizer the plant grows, but
it is deficient in vital trace minerals. In the absence of trace minerals,
plants take up heavy metals (such as aluminum, mercury and lead) from
the soil. These toxic metals are then passed on to us through the food
chain - and they are readily assimilated in the body deficient in protective
When trace minerals are scarce in plant bodies,
they're scarce in human bodies and we then hold onto toxic minerals
and traces of agricultural chemicals. Also, plants deficient in trace
minerals tend to be deficient in vitamins and in protein, as well. It
is primarily the amino acid component of protein from which neurotransmitters
are made. These neurotransmitters have a huge amount to do with our
mental functioning, as well as our physical health. Mineral-deficient
plants are also protein-deficient plants. Between 1950 and 1975, the
calcium content in one cup of rice dropped 21% and iron fell by 28.6%
and protein content dropped nearly 11%. In 1945, wheat was 17% protein.
By 1985, its protein content dropped to 9%.
Tables showing nutrient content of foods can no
longer be relied upon, for minerals are disappearing faster than updated
charts can be published. And, there is great variation in mineral content
of foods grown in different locations and under different conditions.
Trace minerals, rapidly disappearing from our soils,
play a major role in electrolyte formation in the body.
Electrolytes are mineral salts which conduct electricity
when dissolved in solution. In the body, the bloodstream provides the
fluid medium for electrolyte formation. Electrolyte deficiency or imbalance
results in energy loss and fatigue. The disruption of balance or homeostasis
that results leads invariably to disease.
Nature forms electrolytes through a transmutation
process wherein inorganic colloidal minerals are changed into a more
usable crystalloid form. This occurs when water cascades over rocks,
picking up minerals from the soil, tumbles over the terrain and forms
vortexes. Most of us today, however, cannot look to our drinking water
as a source of electrolytes. We drink, by and large, from stagnant,
Such water is not only mineral deficient, but the
minerals it does contain remain in the difficult-to-use colloidal form.
Therefore, our best bet for obtaining unpolluted water that contains
usable (crystalloid) electrolyte minerals is to purify our water mechanically
(preferably through reverse osmosis) and add back the electrolytes.
Be sure to select a true electrolyte formula, one that contains trace
minerals in crystalloid form.
Replacement of electrolytes will balance pH and
stabilize osmotic pressure (the force on the inside and outside of cell
walls). This will result in significantly lowering the risk of infection,
increasing digestive efficiency, restoring peristaltic action, increasing
oxygen to the cells, reducing water retention, correcting neuromuscular
imbalances, improving enzyme production, regulating blood sugar levels
and hormonal production, "chelating" (removing) heavy metals
from the body and increasing energy levels.
The Ultimate Solution
The ultimate solution to the demineralization problem
does not, however, lie in supplementation. It lies in soil remineralization.
We must abandon the use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides that
lock up soil minerals and poison both the soils and our bodies. According
to a 1993 study conducted by the Environmental Working Group, by age
5, children in this country consume more pesticides than is considered
safe for a lifetime. While we're harming ourselves gravely with the
use of pesticides, we don't seem to be making much of a dent in the
insect population: Over 500 species have now become pesticide-resistant.
The answer to the pest problem is to change the terrain of the soil,
from one that produces sick, nutrient-deficient plants to one that produces
healthy, nutrient-dense ones, for insects only feed off sick plants.
Changing the Terrain
The desired change in terrain is accomplished by
restoring minerals to the soil. This can easily and inexpensively be
done through the use of rock dust (ground up rock). When chemicals are
withheld and rock dust is applied, food is provided for the microorganisms
who will resume their job of supplying usable minerals to the plants,
who in turn will nourish us.
The use of rock dust to enliven soils was first
proposed in 1840 by Julius Hensel, author of Bread from Stones. His
message was suppressed by the chemical trust that was profiting handsomely
from the sale of N-P-K fertilizers. Rock dust was not heard of again
for more than a century when the late John Hamacker made repeated efforts
to warn the people and governments of the planet of imminent disaster
(glaciation, the net result of the "Greenhouse effect") if
soil remineralization were not speedily accomplished.
The world was deaf to Hamacker's warnings - or so
it seemed. But out of the darkness comes a ray of light. Last summer
in Beltsville, MD the USDA sponsored a conference that brought together
representatives from government, industry, and the private sector to
explore the potential of using rock dust to remineralize the earth.
Attending this conference was one of John Hamacker's final activities
before leaving the earth plane last year at age 80. It is imperative
that we follow his lead, understand and apply his teachings and renew
the soils of Mother Earth before she does so herself through the violent
natural process of glaciation which will effectively grind up rock to
remineralize the soils.
After the Dark
Once soil remineralization is accomplished, we can
begin to reverse a downward spiral in our civilization. As Hamacker
understood, health, behavior, intelligence, even weather patterns and
survival - are ultimately determined by the health of our soil, which
in turn is dependent upon microorganisms. Health and survival are therefore
not about conquering microbes, but nourishing them. What we do to them,
we do, in a very real sense, to ourselves.
An escalating crime rate, social unrest, falling
IQs - They all relate to the disappearance of soil microorganisms, which
in turn results from man's attempts to conquer and control Mother Nature,
rather than to honor her and work in harmony with her laws.
Dr. I. Gerald Olarsch, ND Susan Stockton, MA, CRC
"Chefs Woodstock Celebrates the Garden", The New York Times,
July 6, 1994.
Martlew, Gillian, ND. Electrolytes: The Spark of life. Natures Publishing:
Murdock, FL .
Wallach, BS, DVM, MD. "Bad Seeds", Health Consciousness,
Vol. 15, No. 5.
Hamacker, John D The Survival of Civilization 1982
Schroeder, H. MD The Trace Elements and Man 1973
Abrahamson, E. M. MD & Pezet, AW. Body. Mind and Sugar
Jensen, Bernard DC & Anderson, Mark Empty Harvest 1990
Tomkins, Peter & Bird, Christopher Secrets of the Soil 1989
Hensel, Julius, Ph.D. Bread From Stones (translated from German) 1894
Fox, Martin, Ph.D. Healthy Water for & Longer Life 1970
Ott, John N. Health and Light 1982