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Bill H #2683
H #2683

APRIL 7, 2009

1. Introduction
2. Proposal
3. Problem Assessment
4. Solution
5. Definitions and Footnotes
6. Link References
7. Studies cited by The Center for Processed Free Living
8. Book and Video References
9. Doctor References

David Snieckus
Macrobiotic Counselor and Chef
99 Crescent Street
Newton, MA 02466

Good Morning…. I acknowledge The Co-chairs of the Revenue Committee, the Vice Chairs, the Members, and those attending this meeting.
First off, I want to thank the Joint Committee for hearing these bills concerning revenue matters, and their predecessors for establishing the “right of free petition” by citizens of the Commonwealth.

I am David Snieckus from Newton, MA.
How is everyone today? (April 7th 2009)
I am here to petition a bill entitled “An Act relative to Sales Tax¹ Exemptions.”
I ask for your consideration on House Bill #2683 to remove or repeal the tax exemption on ALL industrial processed food²!


Benefits and Value of passing bill H #2683:
A. Raise significant revenue in order to:
1. Help provide emergency measures to assist the Commonwealth’s fiscal recovery, (See H #101)
2. Fund the proposed Commonwealth Wellness Fund, which supports health promotion. H#101 Sec. 13. This should include the teaching and training of any citizen to select, prepare, and eat healthy and nutritious locally grown organic plant-based whole foods.
B. Dramatically reduce the spiraling health
care costs in the state of Massachusetts by encouraging citizens to eat local organic plant-based whole foods and discouraging citizens from eating mostly detrimental industrial processed foods.
C. Be a part of the solution toward  
  environmental sustainability.

Problem Assessment
1. Unhealthy food causes health problems.
Unfortunately our modern food technology creates artificial, refined, and highly processed foods, emptied of the ingredients essential to sustain our species. Homogenization, pasteurization, growth hormones, steroids, synthetic vitamins, preservatives, and genetic modifications have failed to improve the food of our agricultural ancestors. Our agricultural practices of forced growing methods and use of pesticides and other chemicals have resulted in top soil depletion, mineral content reduction, chemicalized and genetically altered foods, and ecological imbalance. The result: the accumulation of toxins and poisons in our bodies through the foods we eat, and unprecedented health problems.
“Fake food---highly processed products bearing no resemblance to anything found in nature---fuels the battle between mind and metabolism. It is loaded with calories but devoid of real nourishment. It fills up briefly but depletes us of vitamins, minerals, and other key nutrients our bodies need. Containing artificial flavors that mask its true tastelessness, fake food provides a momentary feeling of pleasure that quickly passes. Instead of satisfying our needs, it actually induces cravings and promotes overeating in our bodies’ desperate attempt to replenish those missing nutrients.” - Dr. David Ludwig, Ending the Food Fight.

2. Health problems result in increased healthcare costs.
“Despite its status as a world-class healthcare hub with unparalleled assets—universities, teaching hospitals and research facilities routinely hailed as setting a global gold standard—a rising tide of preventable chronic disease threatens not only the physical health of Greater Boston residents but is already beginning to crowd out public and private investment in a wide range of regional priorities — including healthcare itself. That is the news contained in a groundbreaking report released today by the Boston Foundation and the New England Healthcare Institute titled ‘The Boston Paradox: Lots of Health Care, Not Enough Health.’” - Health and Human Services, June 14, 2007

3. The production of industrialized processed food and animal products is environmentally detrimental.
Top soil depletion, mineral content reduction, agricultural land loss, deforestation, species reduction, water, air and soil pollution, acid rain, hazardous wastes, human toxification, poor food distribution for current population needs, and the threat of global warming are all examples of the consequences caused by the destructive farming methods from industrial agribusiness.

“When it comes to protecting life on Earth as we know it, the devastating consequences of factory farming are public – and planet – enemy number one.” - Jolia Sidona Allen, Can Vegetarianism Save The Planet?, VegNews, May and June edition 2007.

This article cites a 400 page report ‘Livestock’s Long Shadow’, recently published by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), that reveals that animal agriculture contributes an estimated 18% to global warming, surpassing even transportation emissions as the primary cause.

“Most urban and rural humans are now so far
removed from the precepts of their ancestral 
heritage; it appears the stage has been set for an
ultimate showdown between man and nature. 
Greed, arrogance, and strife have become the
distinguishing characteristics of 21st-century
Homo sapiens.” - Traditional Ancestral Diets,
by Steve Gagne.

Select, Prepare and Eat Healthy Organic Plant-Based Whole Foods!

The ideal food for human consumption is organic plant-based food in a fertile organic soil and filled with quality chlorophyll made by sunlight.

A few reasons why we should strive for a local organic whole foods plant-based diet:

Essential to Health:
“People who ate the most plant-based foods were the healthiest and tended to avoid chronic disease.” “The findings are consistent.” - THE CHINA STUDY, The Most Comprehensive Study of Nutrition Ever Conducted, by T. Colin Campbell, PhD and Thomas M. Campbell II
“Foods with a low carbon cost tend to be healthier.” - Brian Walsh, EAT YOUR GREENS, TIME magazine, February 12, 2009:,9171,1879192,00.html
“Eating a plant-based diet all year long is the best way to help lower your risk of cancer.” – Dana-Farber, MetroBoston, Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2008.
· Evidentially Verifiable:

“The science is clear. The results are unmistakable. Change your diet and dramatically reduce the risk of cancer, diabetes, heart disease and obesity.” - THE CHINA STUDY, The Most Comprehensive Study of Nutrition Ever Conducted, by T. Colin Campbell, PhD and Thomas M. Campbell II.

Ecologically sustainable:
The seeds from plant-based foods can perpetuate our survival for future generations (vs. the unsustainable practices of industrial animal farming and of producing “infertile” processed food products.)

Environmentally Friendly:
Growing local organic plant-based whole foods can save the soil, save deforestation by reducing land use and packaging needs, reduce air and water pollution by decreasing CO2 emissions caused by transportation and deforestation, and reduce other hazardous waste caused by industrialized agribusiness. 
“If we wish to curb global warming over the coming half century, we must look at strategies to address non-CO2 emissions. The strategy with the most impact is vegetarianism.” - Noam Mohr, author of EarthSave’s report A New Global Warming Strategy: How Environmentalists are Overlooking Vegetarianism as The Most Effective Tool Against Climate Change In Our Lifetime.

“The lower your diet is on the food chain, the more earth-friendly it is.” John Robbins, Diet For A New America.

- Costs for locally grown foods are relatively inexpensive (vs. the high environmental and distribution costs associated with producing industrialized animal products and processed food.)
- The health benefits of plant-based whole foods reduce health care costs.
· Evolutionary:
We are biologically designed to eat mainly plants.7
· Easy and Efficient: Mostly, just boil water.
· Enjoyable:
Delicious foods in all their abundant variety nourish the palate and soul.
· Ethical:
We reap what we sow! Eating plant-based foods instills peace and harmony, vs. eating animals and animal-based products, which negatively affects other creatures and perpetuates violence.

In an article in Mother Jones magazine, April 2009, entitled: “Want to fix the Country? Fix Food!”, editors: Clara Jeffery and Monika Bauerlein state: “Never mind that 100 percent of the population are eaters, and that what we eat is responsible for one-fifth of US carbon emissions, that our industrial diet is bankrupting our health care system, that some $13 billion a year in subsidies goes predominantly to underwriting junk food, that growing and subsidizing biofuel pushes up food prices and leads to starvation, deforestation, and even greater CO2 emissions. What we grow, it turns out, is at the very core of how we live, how we run our economy, how we exist in the world. And if we want that existence to be better than soup lines at home, food riots abroad, and drowning polar bears up north, we have to fix food now.”

The great thinkers of our time, from Leonardo da Vinci to Mahatma Gandhi to Albert Einstein, wrote: “Nothing will benefit human health and increase chances for survival of life on earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet.”

Let us work together to bring awareness of the importance of eating healthy whole foods to the citizens of Massachusetts:
a. By providing the proper tax incentives and
b. Through the subsequent revenue needed for the education 
and training of citizens to select, prepare and eat locally grown organic plant-based whole foods!
Passage of House Bill #2683 will help to do just that!

Sincerely and in good health,
David Snieckus
99 Crescent Street
Newton, MA 02466

1 TAX: “A contribution for the support of a government required of persons, groups or businesses within the domain of the government.” The American Heritage Dictionary. (Note: Much better than borrowing at interest!)
“Food processing is the set of methods and techniques used to transform raw ingredients into food or to transform food into other forms for consumption by humans or animals either in the home or by the food processing industry. Food processing typically takes clean, harvested crops or slaughtered and butchered animal products and uses these to produce attractive, marketable and often long-life food products.
In general, fresh food that has not been processed other than by washing and simple kitchen preparation, may be expected to contain a higher proportion of naturally occurring vitamins, fibre and minerals than the equivalent product processed by the food industry. Vitamin C for example is destroyed by heat and therefore canned fruits have a lower content of vitamin C than fresh ones.
Food processing can lower the nutritional value of foods. Processed foods tend to include food additives, such as flavourings and texture enhancing agents, which may have little or no nutritive value, or be unhealthy. Some preservatives added or created during processing such as nitrites or sulphites may cause adverse health effects.
Processed foods often have a higher ratio of calories to other essential nutrients than unprocessed foods, a phenomenon referred to as ‘empty calories’. Most junk foods are processed, and fit this category.”

A short list of processed food ingredients includes:
· Acrylamides: a very toxic substance; a carcinogenic. Includes French fries, potato chips, cookies, breads, cakes, and muffins.
· Artificial Flavorings:
· Artificial Preservatives:
· GMOs: “A genetically modified organism (GMO) or genetically engineered organism (GEO) is an organism whose genetic material has been altered using genetic engineering techniques. These techniques, generally known as recombinant DNA technology, use DNA molecules from different sources, which are combined into one molecule to create a new set of genes. This DNA is then transferred into an organism, giving it modified or novel genes.” - Wikipedia
· Hydrolyzed Protein: “A protein that has been hydrolyzed or broken down into its component amino acids. While there are many means of achieving this, two of the most common are prolonged boiling in a strong acid or strong base or using an enzyme such as the pancreatic protease enzyme to stimulate the naturally-occurring hydrolytic process.” - Wikipidia
· MSG: monosodium glutamate, (white crystalline compound used as a food additive to enhance flavor; often used in Chinese cooking) "Food manufacturers sometimes list MSG simply as `artificial flavors' in ingredient lists":
· Processed white sugar: is an addictive chemical with no nutritious value and a major cause of depression:
· Salt: NaCl is allowed as food; this is the “scrap” from processed sea salt, which is otherwise rich in minerals necessary for our optimal health!
· Transfats: Transfats are unsaturated fats that are not required or beneficial for health. Hydrogenation, a process that adds hydrogen atoms to fat molecules to make them more saturated, is responsible for most dietary transfats. Oils are hydrogenated to increase their melting point (for example in making margarine). – Wikipidia

Organic plant foods are made naturally by fertile soil and sunlight. However, there are man-made laws, according to certain production standards, that lead to conflict and confusion.
Organic foods: “are produced according to certain production standards, meaning they are grown without the use of conventional pesticides, artificial fertilizers, human waste, or sewage sludge, and they were processed without ionizing radiation or food additives. Furthermore, foods claiming to be organic must be free of artificial food additives, and are often processed with fewer artificial methods, materials and conditions (no chemical ripening, no food irradiation, and no genetically modified ingredients, etc.). They may also be required to be produced using energy-saving technologies and packaged using recyclable or biodegradable materials when possible.” - Wikipedia.

“The term ‘Whole Food’ has been known to describe any food that offers a complete balance in nutritional value while in its natural state. It is unprocessed food; food that has undergone very little processing and has been grown or produced without the use of synthetic pesticides or fertilizers. Whole foods are nutrient rich and are thought to promote health because they are a natural source of vitamins and minerals and are easily assimilated and absorbed readily by the body. Whole foods typically include any raw fruits and vegetables, as well as nutrient-dense grains, nuts, seeds and sprouts. Some contend that it is preferable to eat whole foods raw in order to obtain their maximum nutritional benefit. There are several ways to meet the body's needs with respect to whole foods. One way is to consume a variety of fresh raw fruits and vegetables every day.” - Wikipedia.

5 PLANT-BASED FOOD: Food from the plant world, including land and sea vegetables, fruits, grains, beans, nuts and seeds.

6 The Soil and Health, by Sir Albert Howard

7 More evidence that we are mostly suited for a plant-based diet is our biological constitution. Our evolved teeth are grinders for plants and grain: 4 canine teeth, 

8 incisors, 20 molars. Our biological digestive tract is long for absorbing plant-based foods. – From The Book of Macrobiotics, by Michio Kushi
“Unlike carnivores, we don’t have strong stomach acids to quickly dissolve flesh, or short, smooth-walled intestines to pass decaying flesh from our bodies quickly. Instead, we have the weaker stomach acids and the much longer and more highly convoluted intestines of herbivores and frugivores for slowly extracting nutrients from plant foods as they pass through and are broken down.”- THE WORLD PEACE DIET, by Will Tuttle, PhD.

Link References A non-profit organization dedicated to eliminating obesity through teaching the health effects of processed foods and the healing properties of whole foods. Note: studies cited below on how processed foods lead to obesity and other degenerative disease.* Lots of Healthcare, Not Enough Health. The Cancer Project Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease: The Revolutionary Scientifically Proven Nutrition-Based Cure. Caldwell B. Esselstyn, Jr. MD. A non-profit devoted to improving the health of our children through food based solutions. “One powerful one hour video demonstration where Dr. Michael Klaper demonstrates how the foods we eat can either support our health or contribute to disease.” “PMRI is a non-profit research institute that performs scientific research investigating the effects of diet and lifestyle choices on health and disease.” “Sound Science on Health and Nutrition.” - The most comprehensive study of nutrition ever conducted. “Eating for Spiritual Health and Social Harmony.” The Macrobiotic Path to Total Health “Ancient bodies collide with modern technology to produce a flabby, disease-ridden populace.” Health Risks from Processed Foods and Trans Fats: Part I Eat less processed foods.
One story:

*Studies cited by the Center for Processed-Free Living as evidence that processed foods lead to degenerative disease:

1. Dr. Francis Pottenger’s 10-Year Cat Study - From 1932 to 1942, Dr. Francis Marion Pottenger, Jr. conducted an experiment to determine the effects of heat-processed food on cats. The experiment included 900 cats over four generations and was well documented by Dr. Pottenger. The cats were divided into five groups. All the groups were supplied the same basic minimal diet, but the major portion of the diets were varied. Two of the groups were fed whole foods (raw milk and meat - real foods for cats). The other three groups were given processed foods: pasteurized, evaporated and condensed milk.
All four generations of the raw meat and raw milk groups remained healthy throughout their normal life spans. The first generation of all three processed food groups developed diseases and illnesses near the end of their lives. The second generation of all three processed food groups developed diseases and illnesses in the middle of their lives. The third generation of all three processed food groups developed diseases and illnesses in the beginning of their lives and many died before six months of age. There was no fourth generation in any of the three processed food groups. Either the third generation parents were sterile or the fourth generation cats died before birth.

The most startling finding was that the cats fed almost exclusively processed food did not survive beyond the third generation. They could not reproduce. As for applying his results to human nutrition, Dr. Pottenger said, "While no attempt will be made to correlate the changes in the animals studied with malformations found in humans, the similarity is so obvious that parallel pictures will suggest themselves." There seems to be a parallel in our human family today. As reported by John Robbins in Diet for a New America (Stillpoint Publishing, 1987), "Tests done at several major universities have found nearly 25 percent of today's college students are sterile." This finding is substantiated by the increased prevalence of fertility clinics, which are trying to fulfill the needs of couples who cannot produce offspring on their own..."

There is no similar experiment in medical literature. The findings were supervised by Dr. Pottenger along with Dr. Alvin Foord, professor of pathology at the University of Southern California and pathologist at the Huntington Memorial Hospital in Pasadena. These studies met the most rigorous scientific standards of their day and their protocol was observed consistently.

The complete study, with photographs, charts, and illustrations, has been published as a book titled Pottenger’s Cats: A Study in Nutrition by Francis M. Pottenger, Jr., M.D. Details of the study and the book are available at

2. Dr. Weston Price’s Worldwide Study of Primitive Cultures –

Dr. Weston Price, a Harvard trained dentist, traveled the world during the 1930’s comparing the diets and health of people eating traditional whole foods versus modernized processed foods. He published his observations in a classic volume titled Nutrition and Physical Degeneration. Its photographs illustrate in an unforgettable way the physical degeneration that occurs when human groups abandon nourishing traditional diets in favor of modern convenience foods. 

  Through analysis of the vitamin and mineral content of foods, analysis of ancestral remains, and examination of teeth and physical health of people all over the world, Dr. Price documented the stark difference between kinsmen eating whole foods and those eating processed foods. The primitives with their fine bodies, homogeneous reproduction, emotional stability and freedom from degenerative ills stood forth in sharp contrast to those subsisting on the impoverished foods of civilization-sugar, white flour, pasteurized milk and convenience foods filled with extenders and additives. The photographs of Dr. Weston Price illustrate the difference in facial structure between those on native diets and those whose parents had adopted the "civilized" diets of devitalized processed foods.

  More details and the complete study by Dr. Weston Price is available through the Weston A. Price Foundation at

3. Research study links sodium benzoate, a chemical preservative used in large quantities to prevent mold in soft drinks, to DNA damage. The preservative is also added to pickles and sauces.

According to Professor Peter Piper, molecular biologist and a researcher at Sheffield University in the United Kingdom, the preservative causes cell damage that could lead to diseases like cirrhosis of the liver and Parkinson’s. Peter Piper says his research shows that sodium benzoate damages DNA. Piper, who tested benzoate on yeast cells in his laboratory, found that the preservative sodium benzoate induced an increase in the production of oxygen radicals, or free radicals, which several studies have linked to serious illnesses and ageing in general. 

In the study, first completed in 1999, benzoate appeared to attack an important area of DNA in the ‘power station’ of the cells, known as the mitochondria. He is reported as saying "Sodium benzoate has the ability to cause severe damage to DNA in the mitochondria to the point that they totally inactivate it: they knock it out altogether. The mitochondria consumes the oxygen to give you energy and if you damage it - as happens in a number if diseased states - then the cell starts to malfunction very seriously. And there is a whole array of diseases that are now being tied to damage to this DNA - Parkinson's and quite a lot of neuro-degenerative diseases, but above all the whole process of ageing."

Yeast cells were used because of their similarity to human cells, but no research on humans has yet been done. A review of sodium benzoate by the World Health Organization in 2000 concluded that it was safe, but it noted that the available science supporting its safety was "limited". Professor Piper, whose work has been funded by a government research council, said tests conducted by the US Food and Drug Administration were out of date. "The food industry will say these compounds have been tested and they are complete safe," he said. "By the criteria of modern safety testing, the safety tests were inadequate. Like all things, safety testing moves forward and you can conduct a much more rigorous safety test today than you could 50 years ago." Safety research has not been done on the substance in decades, says Peter Piper, and its safety needs to be re-evaluated using modern methods. He has called for new safety tests on sodium benzoate, taking into account a growing body of science on free radicals.

It is the third time in about one year that sodium benzoate, also known as E211 in the European Union, has been publicly linked with a health hazard. In 2006, an investigation by revealed that soft drinks industry leaders had known that sodium benzoate may break down to form benzene, a potentially cancerous chemical, in drinks also containing ascorbic acid (vitamin C) or citric acid. More recently, sodium benzoate was one of seven ‘E-numbers’ linked to behavioral problems in children. Professor Piper says the livers of some children are “working overtime” to process the amount of sodium benzoate entering their bodies. He advised parents to think carefully about buying drinks with preservatives until the quantities in products were proved safe.

The study can be found at The National Center for Biotechnology Institute’s website at:
Piper, Peter, “Yeast Superoxide Dismutase Mutants Reveal a Pro-Oxidant Action of Weak Organic Acid Food Preservatives,” Free Radical Biology and Medicine 1999 Dec;27(11-12):1219-27. available online

4. High Fructose Corn Syrup Linked to Obesity, Diabetes, and Fatty Liver Disease – Two-thirds of America's adults are overweight or obese and as many as 30 percent of U.S. children are overweight, with childhood obesity more than doubling in the past 25 years. Corresponding with this trend, childhood diabetes has increased ten-fold within the past 20 years. It is well-known that high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS), an inexpensive, highly concentrated product synthesized from cornstarch, is widely used in the food industry, most notably as the primary sweetener in soft drinks and baked goods. What is less well known is that its usage increased 1000% between 1970, when it entered our food supply, and 1990. This vast increase in usage far surpasses that of any other food or food group and is largely due to its incredibly low price. In their insatiable hunger for higher profits, food manufacturers add increasing amounts of it to their products in ever-increasing portion sizes. Instead of the once common eight-ounce soft drink, we are now more likely to find a 20-ounce (or bigger) size.
HFCS currently represents 40% of sweeteners added to foods and beverages, and it is conservatively estimated that the average rate of consumption is 132 daily calories for everyone over the age of two. For heavy consumers, this figure increases to more than 300 calories per day. This works out to an average range of about 10-20% of daily calories from HFCS.

The skyrocketing of HFCS in the food supply has paralleled our nation’s rapid increase in obesity. Here’s why. Bray et al.’s 2004 study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, reported that HFCS, and fructose in general, metabolizes differently than glucose and sucrose. This study revealed that fructose does not elicit a response from insulin, does not increase leptin production, and does not suppress ghrelin production. In short, it short-circuits the hormonal process that signals satiation and helps regulate food intake and body weight. Instead, fructose is sent directly to the liver, bypassing the intermediary breakdown steps that occur with sucrose. The liver’s response to the fructose is to generate new fat cells, which it then dumps into the bloodstream as triglycerides.

Another study, coming to the same conclusion, found that a diet high in fructose elevates triglyceride levels shortly after eating far more significantly than a diet high in sucrose, particularly in men. Muscles, bombarded by triglycerides, will develop insulin resistance rather quickly. A study done on golden hamsters, which metabolize fats very much like humans do, found that insulin resistance developed just a few weeks after starting a high-fructose diet. Overall, such studies have found that high fructose intake changes the way we metabolize fats, causing us to store fat and burn sugar.

Studies can be found at The National Center for Biotechnology Institute’s website at:

Brown CM, Dulloo AG, Montani JP., “Sugary Drinks in the Pathogenesis of Obesity and Cardiovascular Diseases,” International Journal of Obesity 2008 Dec;32 Suppl 6:S28-34. available online:

Collison KS, et al., “Diabetes of the Liver: The Link Between Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease and HFCS-55,” Obesity 2009 Mar 12. available online

Johnson RJ, et al., “Hypothesis: Could Excessive Fructose Intake and Uric Acid Cause Type 2 Diabetes?” Endocrine Review 2009 Feb;30(1):96-116. Epub 2009 Jan 16. available online

Some Books and Videos which 

Diet For A Small Planet, by Francis Moore Lappe
Eat More, Weigh Less, by Dean Ornish, M.D.
Foodwise, by Wendy E. Cook
In Defense of Food, by Michael Pollan
Macrobiotics for Dummies, by Verne Varona:
Natural Foods Cookbook, by Mary Estella
The Book of Macrobiotics, by Michio Kushi
The Book of Whole Meals, by Annemarie Colbin
The China Study, The Most Comprehensive Study of Nutrition Ever Conducted, by T. Colin Campbell, PhD and Thomas M. Campbell II

The Cure is in the Kitchen, by Sherry Rodgers, M.D.
The Great Life, by Denny Waxman
The Macrobiotic Path to Total Health, by Michio Kushi and Alex Jack
The Rave Diet, by Michael Anderson
The Self-Healing Cookbook, by Kristina Turner
The Soil and Health, by Sir Albert Howard
The World Peace Diet, by Will Tuttle, PhD
“Eating”, by Michael Anderson:

“The Future of Food”, by Lily Films:

Some Doctors and Scientists who support a whole foods plant-based diet
Neal Barnard, M.D.
T. Colin Campbell, PhD
William Castelli, M.D.
Caldwell Esselstyn, M.D.
Michael Klaper, M.D.
David Ludwig, M.D. 
Dean Ornish, M.D.
Harvey Zarren, M.D.

For additional references and more information,
Contact: David Snieckus at 617-964-2951,, or go to