- Food and Cooking»
- Food Safety
Pesticide factory in your stomach? GMO Health Effects: Why to avoid GMO Foods and BT Corn.
"I'll have a side of pesticides, please."
Toxic chemicals in everyday food. GMOs: Why we must stop Monsanto.
In the past 8-10 years there's been a renewed interest in getting back to nature. For many, the movie Avatar lit a spark or planted a seed that reminded us of what a fascinating and beautiful planet we live on. We often forget that our mother earth provides elegant, simple solutions in her gifts to humanity.
Yet by our own controlling nature, as humans we seem to think that we can manipulate her to our advantage. Sure, genetic modification has been going on for centuries. However, in the past it came from crossbreeding one plant with another plant, to form a new plant. Today, Genetically Modified (GMO = Genetically Modified Organism) plants are created to grow chemicals, pesticides, plastics and other items that do not belong inside the human body.
BT Corn refers to the toxin Bacillus thuringiensis bacterium that is grown inside the corn. In the case of BT, the corn IS the toxin. Pesticides are literally grown within the corn itself, thus destroying any pest who eats it.
GMO Corn, one of the top five US GMO crops is genetically modified to be "RoundUp Ready". What does that mean? It means that there are chemicals grown in the plant that will allow it to live when drenched in Round Up, Monsanto's signature toxic soup. This hideous chemical leeches into the ground contaminating soil. And many Monsanto seeds are bred to have what is commonly known as the "suicide gene" meaning that the plants borne from GMO seeds are infertile. The seeds can not be used to create a new crop, thus forcing the farmer to purchase more GMO seeds for next year's crop.
So what's the problem with eating GMO foods? The short answer: Obesogens. That sounds ugly, right? It is. Our bodies are magnificent, protective machines. They self-regulate and protect us in ways that many do not understand. One of the ways our bodies react to pesticides and toxic chemicals is to store them in fat cells, then release them slowly into the body so they can be eliminated safely. When we overdose on nasty chemicals our bodies respond in a protective manner, holding these chemicals for us, until they can safely be released in a slow manner, so as not to kill us.
Definition (courtesy of Wikipedia) Obesogens are functionally defined as chemicals that inappropriately alter lipid homeostasis and fat storage, change metabolic setpoints, disrupt energy balance or modify the regulation of appetite and satiety to promote fat accumulation and obesity.
Dietary Sources of GMO and BT Corn
"But I don't eat GMO Corn!"
That's right, most of us don't eat GMO Corn directly. Most GMO corn is a variety of corn that is unsuitable for consumption in it's natural state. It's dry fibrous, and probably not too easy to chew. GMO Corn is primiarly used to create High Fructose Corn Syrup, and for feed in feedlots at commercial beef production facilities. Just as GMO corn acts as an obesogen to humans, it also packs on the pounds for the animals forced to eat it.
A cow that grazes and eats its natural grass diet will produce beef that is rich in iron, CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid), and also high in Omega 3, 6 and 9. In short - beef can be healthy for you when it's raised on it's natural diet.
Next, High Fructose Corn Syrup: it's everywhere. It's in nearly every sweetened beverage that you'll find in a typical store from soda to "vitamin water". It's in everything from a Slim Fast bar, to Special K.
If the wheels in your head aren't turning, perhaps you're not hearing me: GMO CORN MAKES YOU FAT, and it's everywhere.
Other Dangers of eating GMO Foods
Aside from the obesogenic affect of GMOs there are many other changes that these chemicals cause in the body. Here's a short list:
- Reproductive Problems
- Weight Gain
- Joint Pain
- DNA Mutation and changes in gene expression
- Skin abnormalities
- Pesticide production INSIDE the body (see video appx 10:10) from BT Corn
- Blood and organ toxicity
- Changes in cholesterol and liver function
More facts about GMO Consumption and Safety (or lack of)
Less Obvious GMO Food Sources
The top 5 produced GMO Crops in America are: Corn, Soy, Wheat, Cotton, Canola.
These 5 are not the only GMO crops in America, but they are the most widely produced. When you begin to think about the Standard American Diet (ironically, SAD) you start to see how these pieces fit together.
- We live on bread and flour based products created from GMO wheat.
- We eat beef and dairy raised on GMO corn.
- We cook our foods in GMO Corn oil, and GMO Canola oil - and if we don't they are likely in the ingredient list.
- And just a random side note: Buffalos who graze near GMO Cotton - can die within a week. They don't consume it, yet simply grazing in it, can literally kill them.
- HFCS (High Fructose Corn Syrup) is in nearly every processed food product that you buy.
Where does your food come from?
The simplest way to avoid GMO foods is to purchase USDA Organic products. If you're lucky enough to have a Menonite or Amish community near you that sells produce, or an organic food co-op that you can join, those are also great options.
Purchase only grassfed beef, or switch to grassfed buffalo. Seeing "Grain Fed" on the label is a nice way of saying "GMO CORN FED" - avoid that label all together. As you may have assumed chickens are also fed low quality, BT and GMO corn. So once again, choosing free-range naturally fed chicken and eggs is equally important.
It's also important to remember that with each dollar you spend you send a message. If you want more chemicals in our food supply, then continue financially supporting Monsanto, DuPont, Kraft, and the other large companies who give the image of wholesome, helpful, family companies. They are not, and they are interested in one thing, and it's NOT YOUR HEALTH.