Glyphosate, the active ingredient in the herbicide Roundup, has been found to cause nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) at very low doses. The pioneering study, done with rats and published in Nature, is the very first one to demonstrate a “causative link between an environmentally-relevant level of Roundup consumption over the long-term and a serious disease,” according to the study’s lead author, Dr. Michael Antoniou of King’s College, London. He also said that the study’s findings were “very worrying.” Dr. Antoniou also noted, “Our results also suggest that regulators should reconsider the safety evaluation of glyphosate-based herbicides.”
Roundup is the same stuff you might have bought in big-box stores for weed eradication. It accumulates in the liver and can cause significant injury.
Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease is caused by a buildup of extra fat in liver cells and not related to consumption of alcohol. NAFLD affects as many as 90 million folks in the U.S.—about 25 percent of the population. If not treated, NAFLD can lead to NASH, or non-alcoholic steatohepatitis. Both NAFLD and NASH, although they are reversible, are serious diseases. Cirrhosis, the final stage of liver damage, is irreversible and eventually fatal unless a liver transplant is obtained.
Tiny Doses, Big Implications
This latest study reveals that the long-term consumption of an extremely low dose of Roundup—a level that is 437,500 times below the levels allowed in the U.S.—can result in NAFLD. Such facts have implications for the minute amounts of glyphosate in the foods that we consume, possibly raising glyphosate levels in our livers until we develop the disease.
A European non-profit organization called the Health and Environment Alliance has urged countries to ban glyphosate, noting that the substance is classified as a “probable carcinogen” by the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer.
You might be wondering about all the excitement over the study, considering that the tests were done on rats and didn’t include human studies. The truth is, rat studies are considered good proxies for human reactions and health risks. Therefore, the study legitimately raises alarms when it comes to people and their exposure to minuscule amounts of glyphosate. The confirmation of liver dysfunction arising from low doses of Roundup was clear.
Am I at Risk?
If you have had regular exposure to Roundup or glyphosate, you should be cognizant of the following symptoms of NAFLD:
- Jaundice (a yellowing of the eyes and skin)
- Fluid buildup and swelling in the legs and abdomen
- Abdominal pain
- Mental confusion
- Loss of appetite
- Spider-like veins that appear
- Weakness and fatigue
- Weight loss.
It remains to be seen what the future of glyphosate is. In the meantime, should you develop symptoms of NAFLD and you have known exposure to glyphosate, you should consider seeking medical attention. If you believe your health has been harmed by exposure to Roundup, you might think about pursuing legal help.
The Injury Lawyer: Experienced and Compassionate Legal Assistance
Individuals in Maryland and in all fifty states who are harmed by faulty products have the right to make a claim against the manufacturer. The Law Office of Steven H. Heisler is currently taking on cases related to Roundup/glyphosate and other pesticides. If you believe you or a loved one may fall into this category, we encourage you to set up an appointment with our legal team today so we can begin gathering the details of your case for review and provide you with legal guidance. We will work to protect your rights and keep your best interests in mind as we seek damages from the responsible parties in your case. Call the Law Office of The Injury Lawyer, Steven H. Heisler, today for a free initial consultation about whether you have a case. Call (410) 625-4878, or use our online contact form.