Genetically Modified Foods
Do You Have the Right to Know if the Foods you are
Consuming are Genetically Modified?
Did you know that the majority of the foods you are eating today have been genetically modified, (better known as GMO’s)?
Did you also know that our government does not feel it is necessary for food to be labeled as being genetically modified? Do you think you have a right to know? I do. Some of our food has been genetically modified over time through its natural evolution. Much of our food however has been genetically engineered through industry manipulation. Genetically engineered foods were introduced into our food in the last twenty years. Nearly ninety percent of corn, soybeans, and sugar beets are genetically modified. It is estimated that three out of four foods are genetically modified. Many European countries have already banned GMO’s, but our own Food and Drug Administration (FDA) states they are not harmful. In fact, as far back as 1988 at the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM) during the 12th Scientific Conference 60 countries voted unanimously against the use of GMOs in food production and agriculture because they felt the risks to our health, and the environment were too high and also violated the rights of consumers and farmers. There are significant health concerns surrounding GMOs. However, the use of pesticides are an even greater risk. Put the two together and the environmental and health concerns is estimated to be far more significant than any of us can image. We are seeing this with the rise in a whole host of diseases.
You should know what you are eating.
Since the advent of genetically modified foods there has been a rise in chronic disease. Most of the food that you and your family are eating today has been genetically modified in the United States. That is unless you are eating only organic. Many of you are beginning to fight for the right to know. In 2012 California was the first state who brought forth a ballot initiative to have food labeling change through Proposition 37. Proposition 37, unfortunately did not pass by a small margin. Proposition 37, had it passed would have required foods that have been genetically engineered be marked on the food label. This was geared to increase consumer awareness and to offer you the opportunity to make a more informed decision when choosing the foods you eat. Not surprisingly, many large food manufacturers fought this effort and spent millions to oppose Proposition 37. According to the group “Food Democracy Now” at http://www.fooddemocracynow.org/, “in the past 2 years, Monsanto and the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) spent more than $70 million to defeat GMO labeling in California and Washington State alone”.
Since California’s failed efforts to pass Proposition 37, several other states are bringing forth proposed legislation. In fact, three states have already successfully passed GMO labeling legislation in Vermont, Connecticut, and Maine. Not surprisingly Monsanto’s favorite front group, according to “Food Democracy Now” sued the state of Vermont to try to block the first GMO labeling bill in the nation that is to go into effect July 1, 2016.
Oregon will vote on “Yes 92” in the next few months to have food labeling changed as well to reflect if a particular food item contains GMO’s.
You can find out more about this at http://oregonrighttoknow.org/, along with what organization and groups are backing this proposed legislation. Colorado also has a ballot initiative through a grassroots effort of volunteers from the “Right to Know Colorado” campaign to have GMO labeling.
It is hoped that someday we as consumers will be fully informed of where our food is coming from. We deserve to know. According to an article published June 12th, 2014 in Reuters.com “60 countries around the globe already require labeling of genetically engineered foods. GMOs have fallen out of favor with many U.S. consumers but products made with them are still abundant in the aisles of most U.S. supermarkets”.
Why should you care if your food has been genetically engineered?
The reason you should care is because these foods can be affecting your health. There is significant research that backs this up and researchers in the field of environmental medicine are trying to sound the alarm.
In studies where rats, animals, and even humans removed genetically modified foods from their diet, their health improved significantly. Some of the diseases believed to be linked to GMO foods are irritable bowel disease, ulcerative colitis, gastro esophageal reflux disease (GERD), food and environmental allergies, asthma, auto-immune diseases, diabetes, cancer, and elevated cholesterol. Since the introduction of GMO’s the incidence of GERD has doubled. When people are taken off GMO’s symptoms improved or went away completely according to Dr. Robin Bernhoft, past president of the Academy of Environmental Medicine. According to Jeffrey Smith, a documentary film producer, the FDA ignored the advice of their own scientist who advised more long-term studies were needed to study the potential health effects of GMO’s. A more recent study compared Non GMO to GMO corn and the differences were alarming. GMO corn has significantly less nutritional value with calcium content at only 14 ppm for GMO and 6130 ppm for Non GMO or 437 times more. Manganese was only 2 ppm for GMO and 14 ppm for Non GM or 7 times more. Magnesium was only 2 ppm for GMO and 113 ppm for Non GMO or 56 times more. If that is not disturbing enough the amount of formaldehyde (known carcinogen) and glyphosate was 13 ppm. Only 0.7 ppm is allowed in water!
Regardless of your personal position on GMOs, I think we as consumers have the right to know what foods contain GMOs. You can then make an informed decision about what foods you are your family choose to consume. If Monsanto and the GMA think GMO’s pose no health risks, then they should not care or be spending millions of dollars to fight initiatives to have GMO labeling on all foods. What do you think?
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