“If we want to defeat the globalists,” says Alex Jones in an Infowars video published last year, “we have to understand they’re using medical tyranny against us. But to get us into that globalist-controlled system, they want to make us unhealthy.” He cites fluoridated water, modified crops and cancers deployed as a form of government control.
“We are all under attack,” Jones says, so seriously that one might actually believe him.
Jones may be just the latest in a long line of snake oil salesmen in American history, a carnival barker with magic tonic to sell. His ingenuity lies in combining anti-government conspiracy theory with a robust supplement-selling operation. The Infowars store—“a one-stop shop for the modern conspiracy theorist,” as Charlie Warzel of BuzzFeed once called it—is sort of like the Vitamin Shoppe remodeled by someone who, well, listens a little too closely to Alex Jones. You can find Wake Up America! Coffee (“Patriot Blend”) for the decidedly non-populist price of $17.95 per pound and organic frankincense oil ($19.95), whose “warm and spicy smell” is sure to fend off the New World Order.
But not all of Jones’s offerings are quite as harmless as essential oils or arabica beans. In fact, new research commissioned by the Center for Environmental Health (CEH) has determined that two products sold by Jones contain potentially dangerous levels of the heavy metal lead, which is universally known to be harmful to the body.
“The chemical was found in the Infowars Caveman Paleo Formula and the Info Wars Myco-ZX supplements. People who take the daily recommended dose of the Formula product would ingest more than twice the daily limit for lead under California law. People who take the Myco-ZX product would ingest more than six times the daily limit for lead under California law,” a CEH release said.
Caveman Paleo Formula is a “bone broth drink mix” that “harnesses the power of ancient supernutrients with cutting edge nutraceutical science.” It contains bee pollen and turmeric root.
Myco-ZX is “an all-natural blend of potent herbs and enzymes that support the body's healthy detoxification of yeast and undesirable fungal organisms.” It contains licorice root and anise seed.
CEH has announced that it has filed “legal notice” against Infowars for violation of California’s law governing public exposure to toxic chemicals. That law, passed in 1986, is known as Proposition 65. It “requires businesses to notify Californians about significant amounts of chemicals in the products they purchase, in their homes or workplaces, or that are released into the environment,” according to the state’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment. OEHHA lists lead as potentially causing cancer, developmental toxicity, male reproductive toxicity and female reproductive toxicity.
“These products are supposed to enhance human health and performance, not lead to increased risk of heart attacks and sperm damage,” says Michael Green, the CEH’s CEO. (Infowars did not reply to Newsweek’s requests for comment made by email and telephone.)
The warning about male virility is especially notable because many of Jones’s products are geared toward men.
BuzzFeed had previously sent six Infowars products for laboratory testing. The results confirmed that the products “don’t contain significantly more or less of a particular ingredient than listed on the bottles, and there are no surprise ingredients. They’re also reasonably safe, meaning they passed heavy metal contaminant screenings and tested free of stimulants, depressants, and other prohibited drugs.”
Myco-ZX and Caveman Paleo Formula were not among the products tested by BuzzFeed.
Caroline Cox, research director for CEH, says the intention is not to sue Infowars out of existence. She only wants Alex Jones to not sell people lead.
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