Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) may taste good—they may be cheaper, and their portion sizes larger—but are they good for your health?
The American Academy of Environmental Medicine released a statement claiming that genetically modified foods have not been properly tested. The chemicals that are injected into them to protect them from pesticides directly cause the adverse effects they have on people.
Do you know what the most difficult part is about this? GMOs are completely ingrained into society, as we have become so accustomed to consuming these genetically modified foods over the years.
A major GMO representative can even be found in the White House. When President Barack Obama was elected, he appointed Michael Taylor to be the Food Czar in his cabinet—Taylor was the former vice president for Monsanto!
If you are not familiar with Monsanto, they are a mega-agricultural biotechnology company that produces genetically engineered seeds. In many cases, the chemicals that are in GMOs come from Monsanto—and now a former Monsanto executive has a major voice in our food safety. The only way society is going to see a difference is if consumers begin to avoid eating GMO foods.
Why You Should Avoid GMO Foods?
One of the world’s most respected biologists, Pushpa M. Bhargava, has reviewed over 600 scientific journals and concluded that GMOs are a major contributor to the deteriorating health of all Americans.
David Schubert, another renowned biologist from the Salk Institute, has also concluded from research that children are at a higher risk of being affected by the toxins and other dietary problems related to GMOs. Schubert goes on to say that children have become “the experimental animals.”
Scientifically speaking, genetic engineering actually alters the genetic codes of the DNA in organisms by adding in genes from other forms of life. Those other life forms include plants, insects, bacteria, and even some viruses. This creates mutant organisms and dangerous mutant genes.
The reason why GMOs will continue to be produced is because of the commercial demand for them. Unfortunately, these “demands” never take into consideration the negative effects that GMOs have on human and animal health. In addition, pollen pollution from GMO crops is already contaminating pristine, non-genetically modified crops on small farms—this pollution can cause permanent, genetic mutation on non-modified crops.
The unethical part is when Monsanto finds out where the pollution has spread, they sue the farmers for patent violations, forcing farmers to then produce GMO foods.
GMOs Linked to Strange Diseases
In 2008, NaturalNews.com released a report about a condition called Morgellons disease. The symptoms reported included crawling, stinging, biting, lesions, and black speck-like materials on or beneath the skin. Some patients reported fatigue, short-term memory loss, joint pain, and changes in vision.
At first, the disease was deemed a hoax, but upon further investigation, the evidence was clear that it could be related to GMOs.
Further research was done on the fiber samples taken from Morgellons patients. What was found was that the samples of all the patients looked the same, and yet they did not match any common environmental fibers. When the Morgellons fiber was broken down, and its DNA extracted, it was discovered to belong to a fungus.
In addition, the fiber also contained Agrobacterium, gram-negative bacteria that have the ability to transform plant, animal, and even human cells. Based on the only human-feeding experiment that has been conducted on GMOs, we know that the genetic material in these foods have the ability to transfer into the DNA of intestinal bacteria, and continue to thrive in the human body.
Top 20 GMO Foods To Avoid
You may be saying, “Well, I avoid eating GMOs—I only eat natural foods.” Not so fast—GMOs are so common that you may be eating genetically modified ingredients and not even know it!
We have to try and avoid as many of them as we can. The following is a list of GMO foods that should be avoided at all costs, as they are health risks:
1. Aspartame: This chemical causes neurotoxicity. It’s made from aspartate, methanol, and phenylalanine—once ingested, the body breaks it down into separate components. For example, methanol, when converted, becomes formaldehyde, a toxic and hazardous substance that should never be ingested. Research has shown that aspartame consumption can lead to leukemia and non-Hodgkin’s lymphomas.
2. Corn: Studies have shown the difference between a regular dietary consumption of corn, versus the GMO version of corn—the GMO version leads to health problems, such as kidney and liver issues. Stick to organic corn.
3. Sugar beets: Every year, there is over 130 million tons of sugar produced globally. Of that number, sugar beets contribute to about 35% of that. The competition with weeds when growing is competitive, so a glyphosate version was made. Because this version was created, farmers are allowed to dump roundup herbicide onto the crops to kill the weeds and not harm the sugar beets.
4. High fructose corn syrup (HFCS): This type of syrup is usually made from corn, which in most cases is a GMO. The corn is processed and converted into starch, where it is then converted into syrup, which involves bacterial enzymes and fungus. The final process has yet another bacterial enzyme added, which creates fructose. Research has shown that during this process, mercury has been found in the final product. Researchers from Princeton and Oxford universities have also linked HFCS to weight gain and type-2 diabetes.
5. Soy: Soy beans are one of the most well-known GMO products in the industry today. Soy lecithin is a waste product that comes from processing crude soy oil. It contains solvents and pesticides, and further research has also found it to contain allergens that have serious health impacts. Most of those impacts have been linked to pancreatic cancer.
6. Corn starch: This is another product made from GMO corn, and has absolutely no nutritional value, yet has all the dangerous consequences that come with GMO foods. Used as an additive in many products, corn starch has been known to create digestive problems.
7. Tomatoes: GMO tomatoes have been found to have fewer antioxidants than natural organic tomatoes.
8. Sausage: Most of the sausages that we eat contain corn syrup, or syrup solid. As we know, corn syrup is a GMO, which by default means that the sausages we eat are GMOs. Avoid pre-packaged sausages, and instead, purchase them from a butcher who specializes in local, organic, free-range meats.
9. Ice cream: It’s a summertime favorite, but contains a wide-range of HFCS and corn starch. You would be better off buying organic ice cream or making it yourself.
10. Non-organic and synthetic vitamins: I’m sure this comes as a surprise to many—adult vitamins and several children’s vitamins contain vegetable products as a base for their vitamins. Unfortunately, many of these vegetables come from corn and soy products; in addition, many can contain aspartame and hydrogenated oils.
11. Infant formula: The formula milk that infants consume contains rBGH (recombinant bovine growth hormone, a genetically engineered artificial hormone) as well as genetically modified soy, which makes up its basic foundation. Complications can include hormone disruption and chronic, long-term health conditions.
12. Beef: When cows eat GMOs, it gets into their systems and never leaves; it becomes part of the meat. Alfalfa, corn, and soy are all found in beef feed. If you are going to eat beef, then make sure it is organic, grass-fed beef.
13. Milk: You’re probably just as upset as I was when I had to put it on the list, but it is true. Monsanto injects cows with “Bovine Growth,” a hormone that increases the milk output from cows. Studies have also found that milk from cows that are injected with rBGH actually contain smaller amounts of fatty acids. In addition, the cows can have mastitis, an utter infection that can lead to blood or pus; these side-effects can make their way into the milk. Disgusting! Buy organic or goat’s milk to avoid the bovine growth hormone.
14. Alfalfa: This is the main contribution of the dairy industry for farmers and industry groups. The “GMO aspect” has been suspended, but the genetically-modified aspect of it will still be in the fields. Because of this, pollinated plants and cross-pollination of GMO plants will affect non-GMO plants.
15. Vegetable oil: Corn, soybean, cotton, and canola oils—all of the crops that make them have been genetically modified in order to withstand roundup herbicide. Unless it is clearly stated as organic, always assume it contains some sort of GMO in it.
16. Canola oil: In 2009, about 90% of Canada’s rapeseed crop, which is canola oil, was made to withstand herbicide. Look for cooking oil that is specifically designated as non-GMO.
17. Margarine and shortening: This is another version of vegetable oil and contains all the same issues that vegetable oil contains.
18. Hawaiian papaya: The West Coast is mostly affected by this. Like many of the other products on this list, it is dangerous because of its virus–resistant abilities. It contains DNA from the ringspot virus.
19. Squash: Squash is genetically modified to fight diseases that will affect them.
20. Flax: Grown illegally in Canada, the amount and extent of contamination has not been discovered yet, but it is shipped all around the world where contamination does occur.
Say No to GMO! Tips for Buying Organic Food
Shopping for non-GMO foods can be tricky at times, because a lot of us don’t know what to look for. Below are some tricks and secrets that you need to look for when shopping for non-GMO foods:
1. Always avoid buying foods that contain non-organic soy, cottonseed, corn, or canola ingredients. The products in the middle aisle of a grocery store almost always contain one of these ingredients. Why, you ask? Because it’s close to the cashier, and it is in the middle of where shoppers need to pass.
2. When you’re buying fruits, if the PLU code on fruits starts with the number eight, avoid it at all costs. If the code starts with the number nine, it means that it is a certified organic product. The PLU code is usually five digits. If you find a vegetable with a four-digit code, it means it’s not a GMO, but it can still contain some chemicals that may be harmful.
3. We all love packaged food products—after all, they’re quick and easy to prepare. But did you know that about 70% of packaged food in North America contains GMOs? Avoid them at all costs, and choose products that have been verified by a non-GMO third-party.
4. If you are a health nut, go for frozen fruits and vegetables. Most of them are non-GMOs, unless they are one of the following: corn, Hawaiian papaya, edamame, zucchini, and yellow summer squash.
There are many more chemicals and pesticides that we are probably not aware of that are harming our food sources—all we can do is try to live the healthiest lives possible. Continue to eat organic food and keep an eye out for the “code” when buying your fruits and vegetables—this will certainly make your grocery shopping less stressful.
We know that mass-producing food is reducing the risk of people going hungry, but how can people get hungry if the chemicals we put in their food are slowly, but surely killing them?
Fassa, P., “Why and How to Avoid GMO Foods,” Natural News web site, October 13, 2009; http://www.naturalnews.com/027226_food_GMO_foods.html.
Geib, A., “GMO alert: top 10 genetically modified foods to avoid eating,” Natural News web site, May 1, 2012; http://www.naturalnews.com/035734_GMOs_foods_dangers.html.
“The Top 20 GMO Foods and Ingredients to Avoid,” Global Healing Center web site, July 24, 2013;
Benson, J., “Six easy steps to avoid common genetically modified foods,” Natural News web site,August 10, 2013; http://www.naturalnews.com/041573_GMOs_avoid_foods.html.
“Quick Start Guide: How to Shop if You’re Avoiding GMOs,” Whole Foods Market web site; http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/how-shop-if-youre-avoiding-gmos, last accessed April 27, 2015.