When I was researching the dangers of GM foods, I was quite shocked to realise just how few people search that this, and related, topics. Does that mean the majority of people don’t care, rely on what they are told or just eat it anyway?
In many countries in Europe, there are labels indicating which foods have been genetically modified and which may contain GM ingredients. In America, GM labeling is not (yet) a legal requirement. Neither is it in Australia.
GM foods are genetically modified using biotechnology. As with much of modern technology, it is way ahead of the moral or ethical consequences it creates. When profit is the motive, then both morals and ethics are of much lesser importance.
Sadly, this extends to governments, who are heavily influenced by the corporations who have a vested interest.
No-one really knows the long term consequences or dangers of GM food, because it is yet to happen. But the health of the environment is already suffering. You could say, that if you consume GM foods, you are taking part in a global experiment.
In an horrific study in France, rats were fed only GM corn. Not only did they develop massive tumours, the mortality rate was much higher. They were also much more susceptible to the allowable amount of pesticides in water, and they suffered severe organ damage, including the liver and kidneys.
When faced with any dilemma, it is a good time to pause and ask yourself questions such as these:
Why are foods being genetically modified?
Who gains from their production?
How safe are they?
What will be their long term impact?
You need to look for the answers from independent sources. It seems that India has perhaps been most hard hit by the experiments. Indian farmers suffer at least 25% losses to their animals grazed on GM pasture. In India GM cotton has underperformed normal cotton. Many Indian farmers suffered yields so decimated that they could not buy the seeds they were locked into buying. This lead to a high suicide rate.
The best way to avoid GM food is to buy certified organic food and to avoid processed food. The common GM foods are the oils – canola, cotton, but also common foods such as soy and corn.
There are GM ingredients hidden in many processed foods. Below is a list that is not exhaustive.
aspartame (also called AminoSweet®, NutraSweet®, Equal Spoonful®, Canderel®, BeneVia®, E951)
canola oil (rapeseed oil)
cobalamin (Vitamin B12)
corn flour, corn masa, corn meal, corn oil, corn sugar, corn syrup, corn starch, high fructose corn syrup (HFCS)
fructose (any form)
glycerol, glycerol monooleate
hydrolyzed vegetable protein
malt, malt syrup, malt extract
modified food starch, modified starch
mono and diglycerides
monosodium glutamate (MSG)
soy flour, soy isolates, soy lecithin, soy milk, soy oil, soy protein, soy protein isolate, soy sauce
sugar (unless specified as cane sugar)
textured vegetable protein
tocopherols (vitamin E)
vegetable fat, vegetable oil
whey, whey powder
With many dangers of GM food yet to realise their full potential, there is enough reason not to put yourself or your family at risk. Going back to buying (or better still growing your own) real food and preparing meals from scratch may be more time consuming, but provides better insurance for the health of you and yours.
For more information on healthy food, click here.
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