Thursday, October 13, 2011

GMO's (Genetically Modified Organisms)

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I have been hearing about GMO foods more and more recently and thought it would be prudent to do a little research. What I have found is pretty disturbing. It all leads back to one company, Monsanto, and their monopoly on the agriculture business. I am not anti-big business. I am anti-big-businesses-that-are-in-bed-with-big-government.

Now how do scientists make genetically "superior" plants? Bacteria. Sounds like it could be a public health concern right? Yeah, I thought so too.'s not just corn and soy that is being genetically modified.

You may be aware that many corn and soy crops in the United States are GM, but it may surprise you to learn that a significant portion of U.S. milk is actually genetically engineered, again thanks to Monsanto. This milk, and the ice cream, cheese, and myriad of other dairy products made from it, contains genetically engineered bovine growth hormone, or rBGH.
U.S. milk producers treat their dairy cattle with rBGH because it boosts milk production. But this artificial growth hormone also increases udder infections in cows, leading to pus in the milk along with excessive use of antibiotics in the cows, which is triggering the creation of antibiotic-resistant superbugs and leaving residues of antibiotics in your dairy. Worse still, milk treated with rBGH also contains higher levels of insulin-like growth factor (IGF-1), a hormone linked to breast, prostate and colon cancers in humans. (original source)
Numerous studies have shown that GM corn causes significant changes to blood cells, kidneys, and the liver. It has also been blamed for potentially life-threatening allergies that have occurred in some people.  Even if this sweetener had any health benefits (and it doesn't), the risks of consuming a substance made from genetically modified corn would not be worth the rewards. Why then, would you want to take the risks when there are absolutely no health rewards? (original source)

The simplest way to avoid GM foods is to buy whole, certified organic foods. By definition, foods that are certified organic must never intentionally use GM organisms, produced without artificial pesticides and fertilizers and from an animal reared without the routine use of antibiotics, growth promoters or other drugs. Additionally, grass-fed beef will not have been fed GM corn feed.
You can also look for foods that are "non-GMO verified" by the Non-GMO Project. 

I do not buy all organic fruits and vegetables, but I do buy strictly organic dairy, I have stopped buying heavily processed foods, stopped buying anything with soy in it, and buy my meat and eggs from a local farm. You do not have to go 100% organic to get most of the benefits of eating a non-GMO diet. 

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