We’ve all heard about the supposed dangers of genetically modified organisms, or GMO’s, but putting the hysteria to one side, and examining just the facts, in this report we’re going to look at the truth behind the claims that GMO’s in our food cause us harm.
I’m also going to look at some of the other chemicals found in our food chain, how dangerous they really are and the results of being contaminated by them.
Genetically modified foods use genetic engineering to increase yields and make crops more resistant to disease; this means the vast majority of the food we consume contains growth hormones or antibiotics.
Organic foods have always thought to be the safe alternative, but just this week, an industry insider warned of GMO “cross contamination” in organic produce and called for the industry to become more honest with its labelling.
In an email, Dag Falck, wrote:
“Due to unavoidable, worldwide cross-pollination, no crop that has a GMO variant, no matter how regulated by the government can be guaranteed to be 100% GMO free.”
Stephanie Wells, senior regulatory affairs advisor with the Canadian Organic Trade Association, agreed with Mr. Falck.
“We’re farming in a polluted world,” she said. “[GMOs] are miniscule and they’re not always there but when they are, they are in trace amounts.”
So, it seems that there is now no escape from GMO’s, even if they are only consumed in small quantities. So what are the dangers, if any and are these foods really safe to eat?
Well, The American Academy of Environmental Medicine, or AAEM, believes that GMO’s are dangerous.
The report that “Several animal studies indicate serious health risks associated with GM food.”
They uncovered problems which include; infertility, immune problems, accelerated aging, faulty insulin regulation, and changes in major organs.
Even FDA scientists had repeatedly warned that GM foods can create unpredictable, hard-to-detect side effects, including allergies, toxins, new diseases, and nutritional problems, however the FDA ignored these warnings and decided to allow GMOs into food without labelling.
- Thousands of sheep, buffalo, and goats in India died after grazing on Bt cotton plants
- Mice eating GM corn for the long term had fewer, and smaller, babies
- More than half the babies of mother rats fed GM soy died within three weeks, and were smaller
- Testicle cells of mice and rats on a GM soy change significantly
- By the third generation, most GM soy-fed hamsters lost the ability to have babies
- Rodents fed GM corn and soy showed immune system responses and signs of toxicity
- Cooked GM soy contains as much as 7-times the amount of a known soy allergen
- Soy allergies skyrocketed by 50% in the UK, soon after GM soy was introduced
- The stomach lining of rats fed GM potatoes showed excessive cell growth, a condition that may lead to cancer.
- Studies showed organ lesions, altered liver and pancreas cells, changed enzyme levels, etc.
And that’s not all, in fact the effects of GMO’s continue inside our bodies long after we stop eating them. The AAEM also warned that:
- If the antibiotic gene inserted into most GM crops were to transfer, it could create super diseases, resistant to antibiotics.
- If the gene that creates Bt-toxin in GM corn were to transfer, it might turn our intestinal bacteria into living pesticide factories.
So obviously, GMO’s pose a serious health risk, but what about the claim that other chemicals have been added to our food chain? What’s the truth behind that?
Well, a dangerous chemical, Biss-feenol-A — or B.P.A, has been found in 93% of humans. BPA is used in the manufacturing of baby bottles; cosmetics, clothing, food cans, beer and soda cans, and even printer ink all contain the chemical which leeches out of containers and into any food or drinks that come into contact with it.
And because it can be absorbed through the skin, U.S. cash register receipts and even US currency has been contaminated with the chemical.
And what about the health implications of BPA? Well, a number of serious health problems have been linked to BPA including cancer, diabetes, infertility and heart disease.
Surely the use of such as dangerous would be illegal? Some countries have acted and banned the chemical.
In 2008, Canada placed BPA on its list of toxic substances, but the European Union along with only 11 states in the US have banned B.P.A from being used in baby bottles and children’s cup only, ignoring the health problems that the chemical can cause in adults.
And in the United Kingdom, seven influential scientists actually called for the chemical to be banned however, in response the food standards agency decided that the “exposure of UK consumers to BPA from all sources, including food contact materials, was well below levels considered harmful”.
The UK has a proven track record of ignoring vital scientific research, when it produces results that could damage relations with, and profit from, major corporations.
Which is even more disturbing when we see exactly what kind of other chemicals are being added to food and drinks.
About 10 percent of American soda drinks contain brom-in-ated vegetable oil – or B.V.O. a flame retardant chemical, originally designed to be used with plastics. Bro-meen itself is known to be toxic to humans and has been used in gasoline, film developing fluids and even pesticides.
The FDA banned bro-meen in 1975, after big pharma used the chemical in sedatives, which resulted in serious side effects which can include psychosis, depression, tremors and loss of reflexes. It’s also thought to be a carce-in-ogen.
B.V.O has actually been banned in over one hundred countries, but not in the United States or Canada.
Powerade, Fanta Orange, Sunkist Pineapple and Mountain Dew are a handful of the drinks that contain B.V.O.
Just this month PepsiCo agreed to remove BVO from Gatorade, a big step forward thanks to an online petition created by a 16 year old girl, and the negative publicity the company received as a result.
Still, while achievements like this are indeed encouraging, much of our food is still contaminated with harmful chemicals that governments and corporations are only too happy to sell us.
I suppose at the end of the day, the only thing that these organisations care about is their bottom line. If we keep consuming these products, then they have no reason to offer safe alternatives.