GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms) are a dangerous adventure into altering what nature provides. There have not been enough studies to prove that there is no harm to humans or animals from ingesting them.
There are a diverse number of health issues reported with GMO foods including: allergies, gastrointestinal issues, infertility and other reproductive issues such as hormone disruption, brain fog, fibromyalgia, anxiety, headaches, depression, skin conditions, as well as immune system challenges. “We’re told that GMOs can help feed the world and that they are perfectly safe to eat. And yet there is growing evidence that GMOs are damaging our health.” (Gore, 2018). There are European countries that have banned GMO foods, including; France, Germany, Austria, Hungary and Greece. There is a reason for these bans; there are twenty-six nations around the world that are currently growing GMOs yet the aforementioned countries that have chosen to ban them. The question posed by me (and others) is why?
GMOs were created mainly to make crops resistant to insects, tolerant of herbicides, tolerant of drought and extreme temperatures and the biggest one being higher crop yield. It really comes down to making money. It has also been suggested that they taste better and have increased nutritional value. Farmers can grow more food on less land with GMOs. It is also believed that GMOs are a sustainable way to feed the masses. In addition, they were started to increase the shelf life of foods. With a longer shelf life, it can be shipped to remote areas.
Animals raised on farms participating in a GMO regimen have certain genes inserted into their genome so that the animal, whether it be a cow, a chicken or salmon, can produce better eggs, milk and meat. With regard to the salmon, they provide more Omega Three Fatty Acids. It is purported that these animals have a higher resistance to disease. What if the farm-raised GMO salmon escape from these fisheries and what happens if they breed with wild salmon?
The problem is no one knows for certain what happens when we and the animals ingest these GMO foods. There is mounting evidence that genetic engineering may not be a wise thing.
The commercial years ago that said “Don’t mess with Mother Nature”, rings in my head. It is said that the agricultural food industry claims that their GM foods are thoroughly tested. Here is the problem; the food companies are conducting their own testing. A conflict of interest to say the least. The pharmaceutical company does the same thing with their drugs and then in a few years, the public hears how “bad it is for you”. Of course, they are going to say that their foods are safe.
Why are we seeing an uptick on allergies, especially food allergies? It is conjecture that the GM food produces a new protein and it is the cause of the upswing. “Indeed, the only published human feeding study on GM foods ever conducted verified that portions of the gene inserted into GM soy ended up transferring into the DNA of human gut bacteria.” (Smith, Institute for Responsible Technology). In my clinic, where I help my clients with allergies, I have seen an increase in food allergies, especially in kids. I cannot say it is simply the GM foods, but I have my suspicion. There is research that supports the increase in allergies to GM grains and foods.
Genetically engineering food causes mutations in plant DNA. Could it do the same when ingested by an animal or human? There are studies done on mice which Jeffrey Smith (of the Institute for Responsible Health) cites as reducing digestive enzymes in mice, along with liver problems, immune reactions and reactions to other foods. There have been zero human trials on GM foods so how can one be certain it is safe for human consumption? The FDA is using us as an in vitro study of the effects of genetically modified foods on a population, we just did not sign up for it.
We do not know the consequences of eating GM foods. Could it at some point along the line alter our DNA expression? Possibly and is it something we are willing to risk? Probably not for a lot of people. At my clinic I stress the importance of eating real food, food without labels. Meaning, vegetables from your own garden or from a farmers’ market or a natural food store. But if the government does not require the labeling of GM foods, then how does the farmer at the farmers’ market know that the seeds he used are non-GMO unless it is clearly labeled non-GMO. How do we know when we buy our vegetables at Whole Foods that it’s non-GMO, unless it is clearly labeled? These are questions that need a clear answer so we, as consumers, know exactly what we are buying. I now have to add into my education of clients, choosing non-GMO foods and why.
In addition, GM foods are hard on the body. They take their toll on the liver and the pancreas. There has been an increase of people being diagnosed with fatty liver and type two diabetes. Now, GMOs may not be the only cause, but I feel they must be considered.