Breast Cancer Action Group launches Think Before You Pink blog

October 26, 2010 by  
Filed under CANCER

Pink October is coming to an end but the struggle against breast cancer goes on. The Breast Cancer Action (BCA) Group is one of the strongest group the cause and it recently launched the Think Before You Pink blog.

BCA is the first group to crack down on pinkwashing defined as:

“…sponsoring companies positioning themselves as leaders in the effort to eradicate breast cancer while engaging in practices that may contribute to rising rates of the disease.”

Can you imagine that BCA even took on the joint campaign “Buckets for the Cure” of Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) the breast cancer giant Susan Komen for the Cure. After all, KFC is not exactly the healthiest fare we should go for if we want to stop breast cancer.  According to BCA:

Considering that high-fat fast foods lead to obesity, and obesity is a known risk factor for all cancers, not only breast cancer, this is an especially tasteless campaign.”

BCA was also able to help convince Yoplait to go rBGH-free. rBGH is a growth hormone used in cows to enhance milk production. It is also suspected to cause cancer and other health conditions. Its latest campaign is to try to convince rBGH manufacturer Eli Lilly

The Think Before You Pink blog is specifically designed to inform consumers about companies who use the pink color and breast cancer to attract attention and market their products. I mean, some even contribute part of their sales to breast cancer research. However, BCA thinks it is not right to accept financial support from corporate sponsors whose products and services actually promote rather than fight breast cancer.

Here are some other examples of pink washing companies and campaigns:

  • Simple Green, whose cleaning products that carry the pink ribbon logo may actually contain carcinogens.
  • Lay’s, Frito’s, Cheeto’s, and chips etc. says “Together we can help beat breast cancer.” Definitely not by eating these products, right?
  • Cosmetic giant Estee Lauder is a big player in the breast cancer campaign but its products are not necessarily pink and may contain  potentially carcinogenic ingredients.

With the new blog, BCA aims to reach more people about pinkwashing. Battling Cancer is fully supporting BCA and its efforts in fighting pinkwashing.

So next time you think pink, remember these BCA mantras:

  • Action speaks louder than pink.
  • Think before you buy pink.

Send a message to Eli Lilly: Stop Milking Cancer!

September 1, 2010 by  
Filed under CANCER

The compound

It goes by many different names: recombinant bovine somatotropin (rBST), recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH), artificial growth hormone, Posilac. But its main purpose is to induce cows to produce more milk. And it does. Unfortunately it harms the cow and the insulin-like growth factor IGF-1 in it finds its way into the milk – and our table.

It is a compound that is banned in most developed countries but not in the US. It is even considered unacceptable by the Codex Alimentarius, the international standard list of approved food additives.

Its manufacturers claim there is not enough evidence to show that rBGH is harmful to humans. And if the cow injected with rBGH gets mastitis, who cares?

There have been recent studies, however, that point to a link between IGF-1 and tumor formation. In one 2009 review, the authors wrote:

“Insulin and Insulin-like Growth Factors (IGFs) systems play a key role in cellular metabolism, differentiation, proliferation, transformation and apoptosis, during normal and malignant growth. Moreover, these molecules seem essential in promoting tumor vascularization.”

The company

Posilac was the brainchild of the agricultural giant Montsanto. It now belongs to the pharma company Eli Lilly. The company is known for its best-selling and sometimes controversial products Prozac (anti-depressant), Thimerosal (vaccine preservative) and Methadone (narcotic drugs treatment. The company is also the manufacturer of the anti-cancer chemotherapy drug Gemzar and the breast cancer preventive drug Evista. In this context, Eli Lilly has the “perfect cancer profit cycle” by manufacturing Posilac which may cause breast cancer and by selling drugs that should prevent or treat breast cancer. In other words, the company is milking cancer to the very last drop. It is a win-win situation for Eli Lilly and the consumers are the ultimate losers.

You can help BCA in trying to stop Eli Lilly from Milking Cancer by sending an email message to Eli Lilly at the www.thinkbeforeyoupink.org

But what is even concerning is the increasing use of rBGH in developing countries in the guise of augmenting food production. Posilac is going global – and so is cancer.

The campaign

The campaign is called Stop Milking Cancer and its aim is to put pressure on Eli Lilly to stop the manufacture of rBGH. Behind the campaign in none other than the Breast Cancer Action Group (BCA), the watchdog group that coined the term “pinkwashers” – companies that claim to care about breast cancer but make or sell products that are linked to the disease. They launched the www.thinkbeforeyoupink.org site to identify pinkwashers.

Here is what the campaign has to say:

Eli Lilly is Milking Cancer!

Eli Lilly is now the sole manufacturer of rBGH — the artificial growth hormone given to dairy cows that increases people’s risk of cancer. Eli Lilly also manufactures breast cancer treatment medications and a pill that “reduces the risk” of breast cancer. Eli Lilly is milking cancer. Tell them to stop making rBGH.

You can help BCA in trying to stop Eli Lilly from Milking Cancer by sending an email message to Eli Lilly at the www.thinkbeforeyoupink.org site.

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NOTE: The contents in this blog are for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as medical advice, diagnosis, treatment or a substitute for professional care. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health professional before making changes to any existing treatment or program. Some of the information presented in this blog may already be out of date.