Chairman's Comments

Comments on Nutrition and its interaction with us and our offspring, from Simon House, the new Chairman of the McCarrison Society 

Mind Gardens - help them go Global!

Launched in Kingston, Jamaica in late 2012, Mind Gardens is a non-profit initiative started by Snoop Lion with the goal of establishing sustainable, organic community gardens that will provide fresh fruits and vegetables to school aged children in the community. Bringing these communities the proper tools and resources to cultivate their own nutritional alternatives not only makes for healthy bodies, but also healthy minds. With two gardens already underway, we need your help to spread the word, build more gardens and take this project worldwide. See the Pledge to support this project, at

1.2 million children in England in poverty missing out on free school meals - petition

51013 signatures so far...

Received from: Hannah Lownsbrough  []

Dear Simon,

1.2 million. That’s the estimated number of children living in poverty in England today, who are missing out on free school meals. We could have a chance to fix this injustice - and make sure these little ones, the very poorest and most vulnerable in our society, get at least one decent meal a day. [1]

The introduction of the new benefits system - universal credit - means the government could easily decide to extend free school dinners to all children living in poverty. At least that would mean that children in families that need help getting by could count on getting one proper meal every school day. [2]

David Cameron could make this happen with the stroke of a pen. But as it stands, he’s not feeling enough pressure to do what’s right -- it’s not in the headlines and not in his in-tray. Let’s change that, and make enough noise to ensure that all children in poverty get free school dinners.

  Tuesday, 12th February, 38 Degrees and The Children’s Society are teaming up to hand-deliver this petition to David Cameron at 10 Downing Street. Click here to add your name:

The government keeps asking us to trust them to make tough spending choices. There’s something terribly wrong when banks are bailed out and the super-rich get away with dodging their taxes -- but children living in poverty still go without free school meals.

You don’t need to be an education expert to know that when children are hungry, concentrating and learning becomes much harder. So choices we make about free school meals today could affect children’s exam results and job choices for years to come. And most people seem to understand that: 91% of the British public think widening access to free school dinners is a good idea. [3]

But beyond all that, it’s just the right thing to do. It’s about the kind of nation we are, and the kind of nation we refuse to become. The number of food banks around Britain has doubled in the last year. [4] Let’s make sure that all children in families living in poverty get at least one proper plate of food a day. Click here to sign the petition to David Cameron:

Thanks for being involved,

Hannah, Becky, James and the 38 Degrees team

PS: Here’s what Lily Caprani from The Children’s Society said, “Nearly three quarters of teachers told us they are seeing children in school with no lunch, and no way to pay for one. They are in the classroom, they see the reality, and they overwhelmingly support the idea that all children in poverty should get a free school meal. 38 Degrees members can be the difference in making this happen.” Please sign here:

[1] Read The Children’s Society report here:
[2] Read The Children’s Society report here:
[3] You can find more information here:
[4] BBC News - Number of UK food banks double in 12 months:

Socio-economic status is associated with epigenetic differences in the pSoBid cohort


Conclusions - This study has indicated an association between epigenetic status and socio-economic status (SES). This relationship has direct implications for population health and is reflected in further associations between global DNA methylation content and emerging biomarkers of CVD.
Key words - DNA methylation, epigenetics, socio-economic status.
Abstract - 

Assisted reproduction treatment (ART) and epigenetic inheritance,


Introduction  . .  some genes from babies conceived by means of IVF show a gene expression pattern that is different from naturally conceived children (Katari et al., 2009). . .  this mechanism could put children conceived by means of assisted reproduction treatment (ART) at a greater risk of diseases, such as diabetes and obesity, later in life.
Epigenetic deregulation already received increasing attention as a possible common cause of adverse ART outcomes, since the incidence of disorders that involve imprinted genes, especially the Beckwith–Wiedemann syndrome (BWS), is often reported to be increased in the offspring (Amor and Halliday, 2008, et al).
Conclusions . . ART can induce epigenetic variation that might be transmitted to the next generation. 
Key words, assisted reproduction,  epigenetics,  human,  genomic imprinting,  transgenerational epigenetic inheritance. 
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