This past weekend the March Against Monsanto was held all over the world with millions of people protesting the use of pesticides and GMO’s in our food supplies. I want to give you the opportunity to decide for yourself if GMO’s are something you want to include on YOUR plate. In more than 60 countries around the world, including Australia, Japan, and all of the countries in the European Union, there are significant restrictions or outright bans on the production and sale of GMOs.
So whats all this hype that GMOs, which are everywhere in food these days, are horrible for your health? Are the rumors true? What is a GMO? The full name of “GMO” is “genetically modified organism” (there are also “genetically engineered organisms”, “GEOs” which are similar in principle). This is an organism whose genetic material has been altered using genetic engineering techniques. Genetically modified foods are meat products and plants that have had their DNA artificially altered in a laboratory by genes from other plants, animals, viruses, or bacteria.
GMOs are not created to alleviate famine or alter foods in a positive way for consumers, but rather make production of food easier and more viable for the companies that sell it. Some studies estimate that over 75% of all processed foods sold in the U.S. contain GMO ingredients, particularly corn, soy, canola, cottonseed, sugar, beef and dairy products. Companies are sneaky in the ways in which they get around leaving customers in the dark about these ingredients and the United States government does not require labeling of these ingredients on products, so consumption of GMOs goes largely unnoticed.
So what’s so bad about eating these products? Not to mention the harmful effects they have on farmers and the environment, GMOs are suspected to have terrible effects on the health of consumers. In studies of animals that have eaten products containing GMOs, it was discovered that these animals experienced reproductive problems, poor immunity, accelerated aging, blood sugar imbalances and harmful effects on major organs.
One reason GMOs are so unhealthy is the amount and type of harmful pesticides that have been sprayed used on these food products. Because GMO plants are bred to be resistant to pesticides, companies are able to use pesticides with higher toxins in greater amounts without consequence. Some issues in humans that have arisen since the introduction of GMOs (although there exist no studies to prove that GMOs are truly the cause of these issues) include allergies, infertility, birth defects, digestive issues, imbalances in gut bacteria, cancers and tumors.
So how can GMOs be avoided? Buy organic, because these products do not include any GMO ingredients. Look for non-GMO product seals on the foods you choose. Avoid products with ingredients that are high in GMOs like dairy products, sugars, corn, soybeans, canola, cottonseed, sugar beets, Hawaiian papaya, zucchini and yellow squash. Look for shopping guides that specifically tell you what you can buy that’s GMO free on many GMO free websites. Some of my faves are below…….
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