Judy Ford, PhD
(Geneticist & Legal Expert)
If you are interested in understanding how our personal environment and lifestyle blends with age, gender, genes, activity, nutrition, and stress to affect our HEALTH, FERTILITY and LONGEVITY then you share my goals. I don’t have all the answers, but I have researched and published many scientific papers on different aspects of this complex topic, and I’ve written several books and spoken widely about this.
This website gives you access to this knowledge through blogs, books, and online courses. I also enjoy giving talks to special interest groups/organisations. Please CONTACT ME if you think I may be able to help you or your organisation.
I am highly motivated to help in discovering the causes of ‘illnesses’, whether they are genetic, ‘environmental’ or a combination of the two. I have worked as an Expert Witness in many cases throughout Australia – please contact me if you think I might be able to help you.
Some Personal History
In 1971, I graduated with 1st class Honours and a PhD from the University of Sydney and in 1975, I set up a genetics department at The Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Adelaide where we spent about half our time working in the field of Reproduction and the other half in Haematology/Leukemia. For 20 years, we performed chromosomal diagnoses looking for possible chromosomal abnormalities in Prenatal fluid/tissue and samples from Miscarriages, and in blood samples to discover possible chromosomal causes of Infertility or Congenital Abnormalities. At the same time, we studied chromosomal changes in Leukemia and Lymphoma, and we wrote scientific papers about our genetic/clinical findings in both Reproduction and Haematology.
PALS Pregnancy & Lifestyle Study
With assistance from a grant from the Australian National Health & Medical Research Council, the PALS study commenced in 1989. This is the largest, extensive study of natural reproduction to have ever been undertaken in the world and I am extraordinarily grateful to all my staff, research colleagues, public relations support and media who helped me recruit and work with 1,000 couples who (initially) volunteered for the study. My book ‘It Takes Two’ gives a reader-friendly account of this amazing study and its findings but here I want to point out that this study strongly demonstrated that in reproduction, as in all aspects of health, there is a critical interaction of age, gender, genes, activity, nutrition, toxic exposures and stress that affects outcome.
A man’s occupation was the most important factor affecting his fertility. A woman was much more likely to have a miscarriage if her husband/partner worked in a trade that exposed him to any types of chemicals and men who worked as ‘labourers’ were the most likely to be infertile. Nevertheless, diet and other aspects of lifestyle were also critical.
Toxic Chemical Exposures
Exposures to one or more of many different chemicals can break and/or damage chromosomes and this can lead to reproductive problems, congenital abnormalities in children as well as playing a key role in many if not most cancers.
In the last 20 years it has become well known that chemicals can and do break chromosomes (see the graph of world publications below) but when I started writing and speaking about this in the 1990’s and especially in 1999, I became the victim of a consorted attack by ‘people’ with vested interests. By this stage I had moved away from the hospital and set up as a private company. Sadly, the attack led me to lose my house, all my money and my business – but my passion remains and since there are now so many more publications (see the graph) on the role of chemicals in damaging chromosomes, the truth can no longer be denied.
An Integrated View of Health
Although chemicals can be highly toxic, our bodies have many scavenger and defence systems that can help remove them before they kill us! But these scavenger systems require specific nutrients, and our requirements change as we age.
In order to understand and optimise health, it is necessary to recognise that almost all illness is ‘multifactorial’ i.e. it involves several different factors interacting together. For this reason, I always try to present a holistic view of health that considers the key interactions between the many different determinant factors, and this is where my work is different from most others.
Please join me on my journey to optimising OUR LIFELONG HEALTH.