Did we miss the memo?

By Richard Lear

About 5 years ago, I began to notice that a lot of people in my orbit – friends, family, colleagues – were complaining of ill health. Some were being diagnosed with conditions I’d never heard of while others were experiencing chronic fatigue and a general lack of well-being. It got me to thinking and then researching. What I’ve learned through a lot of deep digging both surprised and deeply concerned me.

An EXPLOSION OF CHRONIC DISEASE has quietly descended upon the United States. Over the past generation, 36 diseases and chronic health conditions have more than doubled in prevalence. Twenty of these conditions more than tripled and 16 more than quadrupled.

Sampling of 36 Fast-Growing Diseases and Chronic Conditions
(Prevalence more than doubled since 1990)
  • Alzheimer’s
  • Stroke
  • Autism
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Panic Disorder
  • Autoimmune Disease
  • Lupus
  • Food Allergies
  • Celiac Disease
  • Irritable Bowel (IBS)
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
  • Osteoarthritis
  • COPD
  • Asthma
  • Hypertension
  • Sleep Apnea
  • Insomnia
  • Leukemia
  • Melanoma
  • Squamous Cell Cancer
  • Diabetes I & II
  • Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
  • Cataracts
  • Obesity
  • Kidney Disease
  • Thyroid Disease
  • Erectile Dysfunction

Until recently, none of the 36 fast-growing diseases and chronic conditions exceeded typical global norms. In fact, prior to 1990, the prevalence of these conditions was just a fraction of current levels. Since then, the U.S. has added more than 394 million new cases and now leads the rest of the world by a wide margin. At least 170 million Americans are affected by at least one of the fast-growing diseases or conditions. The annual economic burden to society is nearly $3 trillion in increased health costs, decreased productivity, lost wages, etc. The social, emotional, and psychological cost to sufferers and their families is incalculable.

A New Era of Disease

Several characteristics appear to make the 36 fast-growing diseases and chronic conditions part of a “new era of disease.”

  • First, they are “GERMLESS.”
    Today, germs are no longer mostly to blame for our poor health. All 36 fast-growing diseases and conditions are “germless,” meaning they are NOT infectious maladies caused by bacteria, viruses, and the like. Instead, scientists believe they develop as a result of diet, lifestyle, or a host of environmental factors. In this sense, they are modern “man-made” ailments. They are diseases of civilization!
  • Second, they fall mostly within FOUR EMERGING DISEASE GROUPS.
    The 36 fastest-growing diseases and chronic conditions are not simply the usual suspects. While cardiovascular disease and cancers still persist in the U.S., the diseases experiencing the fastest growth and highest costs are associated primarily with four emerging disease groups: neurological disorders, auto-inflammatory diseases, sleep insufficiency, and obesity. Only three cancers (i.e., leukemia, melanoma, and squamous cell cancer) are currently among the fastest growing diseases.

    These emerging disease groups are mostly system-focused. Each is highly associated with either neurological, autoimmune, inflammatory, or metabolic processes. This means the 36 fast-growing diseases and chronic conditions attack either our brain, nervous system, immune system, or core ability to create vital energy.



  • Finally, there are NO CURES for most, if not all, of the conditions.
    While some of the fast-growing diseases and chronic conditions may be preventable by changing diet, lifestyle, or environmental exposures, definitive cures remain elusive. This proves frustrating for the many Americans (more than half!) already suffering from one or more of these conditions. Some say it feels like a life sentence of managing symptoms (usually with prescription drugs), with limited hope of full recovery.

    Even prevention may prove challenging. Avoiding dietary triggers (such as processed sugar) and lifestyle factors (such as poor sleep habits, inactivity, and smoking) seems relatively straightforward. But, dodging potential environmental causes is infinitely more problematic, especially those environmental factors not entirely within our control. For example, how can we totally avoid exposures to airborne chemicals or EMF pollution (i.e., electromagnetic fields/radiation)? These two environmental factors, along with pesticides, have each grown by more than 3000% since 1990. All three have been scientifically associated with the main diseases driving the current U.S. health crisis.

Is a Single Molecule to Blame for the Current Health Crisis?

After careful analysis of available research on the 36 fast-growing diseases and chronic conditions, I published a paper in 2016 titled, “The Root Cause in the Dramatic Rise of Chronic Disease.” The paper links all 36 fast-growing diseases and conditions to a single molecule in the body called peroxynitrite. To simplify, let’s call peroxynitrite, P.

Much of the scientific community has been keenly aware of the connection between P and chronic disease for more than a decade. According to a top team of scientists at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), P is associated with more than sixty chronic diseases. In their landmark paper, “Nitric Oxide and Peroxynitrite in Health and Disease” (2007), the NIH team established P as one of the most devastating molecules created in the human body. In addition to linking it to more than 100 biological disruptions, the NIH team connected P with cancer, heart disease, diabetes, kidney disease, and neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s.

Hundreds of scientists have shown that P both causes and acts in concert with other biological factors such as chronic inflammation and oxidative stress (i.e., high levels of free radicals in the body). It also cripples the mitochondria’s ability to create energy (ATP). These four biomarkers are highly correlated to most of the diseases of civilization, including all 36 fast-growing diseases and chronic conditions. According to U.S. government website, PUBMED, at least 8,000 studies confirm the extensive biochemical havoc P creates, including the more than 100 biological effects reported NIH.

Peroxynitrite destroying DNA

So what causes P in the body? Research points to several external factors shown to trigger production of P. For example:

  • Sugar in our diet, in particular high fructose corn syrup
  • Glyphosate in wheat, corn, soy, and other products
    Glyphosate is the active ingredient in herbicides used to control weeds (e.g., Mansanto’s RoundUp). Big industry now uses glyphosate to accelerate/increase crop yields. As a result, glyphosate is becoming more and more common in our food supply.
  • Other pesticides
  • Electromagnetic (EMF) pollution
    Electromagnetic pollution refers to the artificial electromagnetic fields and radiation (EMF/EMR) associated with wireless devices, consumer electronics, modern appliances, energy efficient lighting, electricity, and much more. Experts estimate we are now exposed to levels of electromagnetic radiation that are billions of times higher than those found in nature. Our exposure to EMF pollution began in the early 1900s when electricity was introduced into homes and other buildings. It has increased exponentially over the past 30 years as a result of the wireless and electronics revolutions and a strong push for energy efficiency. Interestingly, this is the same 30-year period during which the prevalence of new era “germless” diseases grew dramatically. A coincidence? Likely not!!
  • Chemical exposures
  • Heavy metal exposures

As alluded to above, high levels of P in the body can lead to other internal conditions associated with the development of disease and chronic health problems. These include oxidative stress, nitrative stress, chronic inflammation, mitochondrial dysfunction, autonomic dysfunction, and epithelial/endothelial dysfunction. These internal conditions can in turn lead to the production of even more P in the body. A vicious cycle of sorts!

The connection research scientists have established between peroxynitrite (P) and disease is exciting because it points to a possible path for identifying cures. If this molecule and its triggers could be controlled, the incidence of many devastating diseases and chronic conditions might be reduced or eliminated. Shockingly, it appears that insights about P from thousands of scientists have not made their way to the medical community. Many doctors have never heard of (P). In general, there is limited consensus among medical practitioners about the root causes of new era diseases and even fewer ideas about effective cures. The best many doctors do today is prescribe drugs for symptom management.

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If Scientists Know, Why Don’t We?……. Did We Miss the Memo?

The more I learned about the explosion of disease in the U.S. and the existence of possible root causes, the more incredulous I became. Why hadn’t I heard of this burgeoning health crisis? Sure, I’d read articles here and there on individual diseases. But, I don’t remember seeing major headlines or news segments outlining the big picture (i.e., the fact that many diseases and chronic conditions have skyrocketed in prevalence, all within a relatively short period of time). No TIME magazine cover story. No 60 Minutes special. No New York Times or Washington Post investigative reports. Only relative silence!

With this in mind, I submitted my findings to the U.S. President, several prestigious investigative news agencies, and half a dozen members of the 115th Congress. No response. While more than 4,700 scientists, researchers, and others have read my paper “The Root Cause in the Dramatic Rise of Chronic Disease” (ResearchGate), there seems to be little interest in this topic within the media or political arena. Health care costs are spiraling out of control. Debate on affordable health care options rages on. Why is there silence on the health crisis itself? And, if a single molecule sits at the heart of the crisis, why aren’t we closer to finding cures for fast-growing diseases and conditions?

The Plot Thickens…

When I discovered the crucial role peroxynitrite (P) plays in chronic disease, I contacted Dr. Pal Pacher, the lead author from the landmark NIH paper mentioned earlier. I asked Dr. Pacher, “Why don’t we know about peroxynitrite’s role in chronic disease?” He quickly responded that some pharmaceutical companies had tried to create a prescription drug to eliminate P from the body. However, these drug companies gave up because they were unable to synthesize a clean drug for public use. I was stunned.

I actually intended a much broader question, so I repeated it. “Why don’t ‘we’ know? I mean, why doesn’t the public know?” Silence. A chilling implication hung in the air. Could it be that both the medical community and the public are more dependent on the pharmaceutical industry than research scientists to communicate important scientific breakthroughs? This troubling realization points to a huge flaw in how science generally gets translated into clinical medicine. Though the scientific community is firmly aware of P’s role in disease, many physicians and others in the medical community have never heard of it. While disturbing in itself, what follows evokes an even more frightening question. Does this mean that unless scientific breakthroughs are successfully translated into prescription drugs or medical products, the medical community and the general public are left in the dark?

Later, after more research, I discovered more than 20 natural scavengers which can reduce, or possibly eliminate, P in the body. Herbs, spices, and supplements such rosemary, green tea, garlic, ginger, cloves, turmeric, vitamin E, and mega doses of citric acid (Vitamin C) are all capable of reducing levels of P. That’s when a light bulb really went on for me. Two epiphanies suddenly exploded into view.

  • First, why would any pharmaceutical company create a wonder drug that could eliminate disease for 170 million people? This single drug could potentially eliminate the need for hundreds of already successful drugs overnight. Profits would plummet. Shareholders would not be happy.
  • Second, if there are really so many natural scavengers for P, pharmaceutical companies may have little incentive to sink research and development dollars into creating a drug to reduce or eliminate it.


We’re living in a new era of disease. Germless neurological, autoimmune, inflammatory, and metabolic diseases are growing out of control. Together, government websites such as CDC, NCBI, and NIH report more than 700 million cases of 36 fast-growing diseases and chronic conditions in the U.S. More than 400 million new cases have been diagnosed in a single generation. This explosion of disease in the U.S. is crippling our economy, with an estimated annual cost to society of more than $2.7 trillion each year!

It seems clear the U.S. is experiencing a serious health crisis, and yet, the public remains mostly unaware of the epidemic. Worse yet, important scientific insights about potential root causes of chronic disease (i.e., peroxynitrite and related biological factors) are not finding their way to the medical community. Consequently, nearly 53% of Americans are left without access to possible cures and treatments for more than 3 dozen fast-growing diseases and chronic conditions. Worst of all, no one seems to be raising the warning flag about this important social and economic issue. Not our leaders. Not the media. Why not?

Important questions need to be answered!

    • Why hasn’t the public been informed about the scope and cost of the health crisis currently plaguing the U.S.?
    • What is preventing important scientific insights from more than 8,000 studies on peroxynitrite (P) and other related biological factors from finding their way to doctors and other medical practitioners?
    • Why isn’t more being done to find ways to control production of peroxynitrite (P) in the body?
    • What will it take for one or more courageous journalists to take a deep look at this critical social and economic issue?
    • When will Congress finally call for an investigation into the sudden explosion of so many diseases of civilization in such a short period of time?



“The Root Cause in the Dramatic Rise of Chronic Disease”  

Recent Articles

Is Dirty Electricity putting the US at a Competitive Disadvantage?

Is Dirty Electricity putting the US at a Competitive Disadvantage?

Is Dirty Electricity putting the US at a Competitive Disadvantage?

There is mounting scientific evidence that our electrical environment really matters. (1,3,10)

Dozens of studies confirm that everything from wireless exposures from cell phones, Bluetooth and Wifi to magnetic fields, radiated from laptops, computers and space heaters, can affect our health.

Should we also be concerned about increasing levels of dirty electricity?

Dirty electricity is a recently-coined term, which describes electromagnetic interference (EMI) or electrical noise that radiates from devices, modern appliances and electrical circuits. In the past decade, it has become ubiquitous. Research suggests that this type of chaotic electrical energy (4) can trigger inflammation (1); and headaches, lack of focus, irritability and anxiety. (5) Two studies show dirty electricity may even cause cancer. (6, 7)

Could dirty electricity be putting the US at a competitive disadvantage in education, business and sport? Let’s take a look:

Exactly when and how did this potential threat from dirty electricity arise? The ‘when’ question evokes a simple guess. While dirty electricity has been around for more than a generation, it probably only became a health factor in the past decade or, so. Let’s see why:

Explosion of digital devices and efficiency lighting

High levels of dirty electricity are a result of the unprecedented explosion of electronics and green technologies. The dramatic growth of digital devices and adoption of efficiency lighting is creating a logjam on our electrical circuits. Every added device plugged into your electrical outlets increases the chaos of competing electrical signals. And that can create an even bigger problem.

Rising levels of Dirty Electricity

Our living environments are suddenly filled with potentially harmful electrical energy. Our circuits and devices are throwing off electrical spikes and surges, which are called voltage transients. Ironically voltage transients are both unusable and wasted. The result is rising levels of airborne EMI flooding our living spaces.

And while most don’t notice this invisible phenomenon, something crucial is happening all the same. This interference can radiate ‘positive’ and ‘erratic’ energy onto our bodies. Scientist have suggested that it then can couple to our bodies and possibly interfere with our own critical biological signals.

Dirty electricity is created by devices that are plugged-in: For example: computers, game consoles, Wi-Fi, battery chargers, fluorescent lights, solar power and anything that uses an AC adapter can cause dirty electricity.

Why should we be concerned? It turns out that radiated electrical energy like dirty electricity has been shown to be bioactive (1). That is, when dirty electricity comes into contact with our bodies, it can fundamentally affect our health. This chaotic electrical energy can couple to our bodies and can cause biological effects in humans. So far, as many as 5000 studies (2) have shown low-levels of electromagnetic radiation (EMR) contributes to at least 132 biological effects and dozens of diseases. (3) Dirty electricity is just one form of EMR and it may be one of the most pernicious. Fortunately it is possibly the only form of EMR, which can be successfully addressed with filtration. Dirty electricity filters, like those offered by Greenwave, can significantly reduce exposure to the chaotic electrical energy being produced by our favorite electronics and energy saving devices.

Dirty Electricity – is it an emerging global health threat?

Dirty Electricity has become a popular term to describe the EMI radiating from our electrical circuits. Research has shown that this type of chaotic electrical energy (4) can trigger inflammation (1), headaches, lack of focus, irritability and anxiety (5) — and may be associated with cancer. (6, 7)

While dirty electricity is an increasing problem worldwide, global electrical standards outside of the US are cushioning the blow elsewhere. For instance tight regulations in the European Union (EU) on EMI caused by electrical devices serves to reduce the dirty electricity problem by as much as 50% there. But what about in the US?

Asked differently, how does all this excess electrical energy translate into impacting the competitiveness of the US in education, business and sport? The short answer: dirty electricity and other forms of EMR may be affecting our optimal health. Optimal health is crucial to peak performance across each of these areas. But there’s more. Besides optimal health, which implies physical health. There is also a key mental component of optimal health which underlies peak performance within education, business and sport. And this is where EMR may have the greatest impact. Our attitude, attention and cognitive abilities are critically affected by our electrical environment.

In a single generation, the US has quietly experienced a major setback in public health. Eight neurological diseases and conditions have more than tripled with no apparent explanation. Another twenty-eight auto-inflammatory, neurological, sleep and metabolic conditions have more than doubled (9). More than 170 million Americans are living with chronic diseases and/ or medical conditions. Meanwhile both dirty electricity and other EMR has grown by as much as 6085%.

Here is a snapshot of the growth (1990-2015), prevalence and annual cost for the neurologically-based diseases and conditions in the US (9):

There is little evidence that any one of these diseases is caused by germs. Instead all are caused by something in our diet, lifestyle or environment. Research has shown that all these conditions are associated with a single molecule made in the body called peroxynitrite. Let’s call it P. An elite scientific team from the National Institutes of Health has associated peroxynitrite (P) with over one hundred biological effects and sixty chronic diseases in their landmark paper, “Nitric Oxide and Peroxynitrite in Health and Disease.”

So what causes P? Scientists like Dr. Pacher, the lead scientist on the NIH paper, believes one obvious trigger is sugar. In particular, he cites high fructose corn syrup as one chief suspect. Dozens of studies confirm Dr. Pacher’s belief. Dr. Stephanie Seneff of MIT links P with a pesticide that has been added to wheat, corn and soy crops, beginning around 1998. This chemical is called glyphosate – more popularly known as Roundup. Still, the most convincing evidence may arise from the effects of the burgeoning electrical environment which surrounds us every day. This is the meteoric rise of our constant exposures to EMR.

Dr. Martin Pall, PhD of Washington State University makes a strong case (10) that electrical energy in the form of electromagnetic radiation (EMR) from devices like cell phones and Wi-Fi is disrupting key messaging within and without our cells. Apparently all this additional electrical energy is affecting concentrations of calcium ions, which use electrochemical techniques to signal the cells. These imbalances can create inflammation and free radicals (oxidative stress) in the body. Both inflammation and oxidative stress are associated with almost every chronic disease from cancer to diabetes; from heart disease to Alzheimer’s. They are also associated with the fastest-growing neurological and autoimmune conditions like anxiety, MS, depression, sleep issues, bi-polar, erectile dysfunction, diabetes II and many more.

Could the dramatic increase in electromagnetic radiation in the environment from wireless signals, electronic devices and dirty electricity be stealing our peak performance? When you think about the potential impacts from inflammation and free radicals in undermining performance in athletics, academics and even business, it’s not much of stretch.

Substantial science has already linked electrical fields to health, disease and inflammation. But most of us are still blaming emotional, physical and psychological stress for our performance shortcomings. Perhaps we should simply turn off our technology when we sleep and install a few dirty electricity filters and test the theory. The science suggests it wouldn’t take long to see changes in our attitude, attention, focus and most of all – our performance. And it would be a whole lot cheaper!


(1) – Carpenter DO, Sage C, Behari J, Xu, Lai H, Blank M, Johansson O, Grigoriev Y, Salford L, Carlberg et al CV, et al  “BioInitiative 2012, A Rationale for Biologically-based Exposure Standards for Low-Intensity Electromagnetic Radiation”; http://www.bioinitiative.org/table-of-contents/(1) Carpenter DO, Sage C, Behari J, Xu, Lai H, Blank M, Johansson O, Grigoriev Y, Salford L, Carlberg et al CV, et al  “BioInitiative 2012, A Rationale for Biologically-based Exposure Standards for Low-Intensity Electromagnetic Radiation”; http://www.bioinitiative.org/table-of-contents/

(2) – More than 5000 studies show biological effects from low-level exposures to electrical fields such as radiofrequency, EMI and microwave radiation. This level is reached in just two studies: (1) the BioInitiative Report (2800 studies) and (3) US Navy study (2208) – see below.

(3) – Glaser, ZR “Bibliography of Reported Biological Phenomena (Effects) and Clinical Manifestations Attributed to Microwave and    Radio-Frequency Radiation”; Naval Medical Research Institute, October 1971 http://justproveit.net/sites/default/files/prove-it/files/military_radiowave.pdf

(4) – Chaotic Electrical Energy – non-sinusoidal, or continuous waveform. (i.e. modulated wave form, pulsed, AC (alternating current or EMI – electromagnetic interference (dirty electricity)

(5) – Havas, M, Olstad, A. “Power quality affects teacher wellbeing and student behavior in three Minnesota Schools; Science Total Environment. 2008 Sep 1;402 (2-3):157-62. doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2008.04.046. Epub 2008 Jun 16.

(6) Milham, S, Morgan L. L., “A New Electromagnetic Exposure Metric: High Frequency Voltage Transients Associated with Increased Cancer Incidence in Teachers in a California School” American Journal of Industrial Medicine (2008).

(7) World Health Organization (WHO) May 31, 2011; IARC CLASSIFIES RADIOFREQUENCY ELECTROMAGNETIC FIELDS AS POSSIBLY CARCINOGENIC TO HUMANS.  http://www.iarc.fr/en/media-centre/pr/2011/pdfs/pr208_E.pdf 

(8) Pacher P1, Beckman JS, Liaudet L. Nitric oxide and peroxynitrite in health and disease. Physiol Rev. 2007 Jan; 87(1):315-424. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2248324/

(9) Lear, Richard A “Root Cause in the Dramatic Rise of Chronic Disease.” ResearchGate, September 2016

(10) Pall, Martin L “Electromagnetic fields act via activation of voltage-gated calcium channels to produce beneficial or adverse effects.” J Cell Mol Med. 2013 Aug; 17(8): 958–965. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3780531/

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