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Feeding prisoners genetically modified soy products may be 'cruel and unusual' punishment

Sunday, November 13, 2011 by: Ethan A. Huff, staff writer
Tags: soy products, prison system, health news

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(NaturalNews) A Florida prison inmate is filing a lawsuit against the state's prison system for what he says is cruel and unusual punishment. According to CBS 10 News in Tampa, 32-year-old convicted pedophile Eric Harris says the soy fillers that have replaced real meat and other foods in prison meals is causing him and others to suffer serious health problems.

Back in 2009, Lake Correctional Institution (LCI) in Clermont, Fla., began substituting soy for meat in many of its meals. Up to 70 percent of so-called "meat" items became soy. This list includes cheese, bread and protein, gravy, dressing, and even milk, according to reports.

The transition cut the prison's food budget in half, but it also led to a multitude of reported health problems including chronic constipation, severe diarrhea, vomiting, blackouts, heart palpitations, and rashes. There have also been a number of complaints about sharp stomach pains, depression, hypothyroidism, low body temperature, brain fog, fatigue, weight maintenance problems, and thyroid disease.

Following the initial filing, the prison reportedly quickly eliminated many of the obvious forms of soy -- things like visible soy or "textured vegetable protein" chunks -- from the meals. But it continues to hide high amounts of soy in meat, bread, cheese, and other food ingredients and additives.

Since roughly 94 percent of soy grown in the US is genetically modified (GM), the soy being fed to Florida prisoners is more than likely GM as well (http://www.ers.usda.gov/Data/BiotechCrops/). GM soy is known to cause fetal developmental problems, reproductive dysfunction, and a spike in estrogen levels, particularly in men (http://www.naturalnews.com/026426_GMO_food_G...).

The Weston A. Price Foundation (WAPF) has agreed to provide informational support for the case, and supports the notion that feeding prison inmates (or anyone else, for that matter) high amounts of soy-laden foods is cruel and unusual punishment, and that it is a violation of Article 1, number 17 of the Florida Constitution (http://www.westonaprice.org/press/florida-pr...).

The case is also reportedly seeking to become a major class action where taxpayers and other members of the public can join the fight against toxic soy products.

Sources for this article include:

http://tampa.cbslocal.com/2011/11/08/florida...
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