A GMO, or a genetically modified organism, is an organism whose genetical makeup has been altered- such as mutating, deleting, or adding genetic material.
This means that GMOs are plants, animals or microorganisms whose genetic code has been altered to give it characteristics it does not naturally possess.
So.. what’s the problem? Although there have been attempts to modify organisms to enhance nutritional benefits, the majority of our food is modified to increase tolerance to herbicides and to insects. When plants are grown with herbicide-tolerant genes injected, farmers can spray large amounts of weed killer directly on the plants without the risk of also killing the crop. This means that the farmer can spray massive amounts of chemicals directly onto the fruits and vegetables you eat. Also, Insect-resistant GMO crops produce pesticides within the plant, killing or deterring insects from eating the plant. Although the farmer no longer has to spray pesticides on the plants, the crop itself is toxic with the pesticides residing within. This means you’re eating pesticides.
The biggest issue with genetically modifying anything is that the long term effects are completely unpredictable. Mother nature has constructed the organisms on our Earth in a precise and delicate way, and we are all interconnected in very complex and interdependent way. We know we can change one gene to reflect a desired trait- but we have no idea how this can spiral out of control, creating a domino effect on not only the crop- but the specimens that ingest the crop, and every organism tied to that crop through nature.
There has never been a complete and conclusive study on the effects of GMOs on humans. We DO know that these mutated foods are alien to our insides, as our bodies have not evolved to understand and utilize them. We don’t even know if the Frankenstein genes in the GMO crops can end up mutating our own genes in the long run!
We also know the long term effects on animals tested with GMO products, and the results aren’t pretty.
- Severely damaged villi, finger-like projections of the intestinal lining that absorb nutrients. This means we cannot extract the nutrients from food that we need to LIVE.
- Skin problems
- Fertility complications (infertility, miscarriage, premature births, low birth weight.)
- The ‘pesticides’ formed within GM crops are designed to kill insects from the inside out, so it’s probably killing our gut bacteria. Gut bacteria is needed for ALL of our systems, including digestion and the immune system.
- The bacteria and virus resistant genes in GMOs mix with our gut bacteria genes, creating antibiotics resistant gut bacteria. This not only can make us resistant to antibiotics, but we may become more susceptible to viral and bacterial infections, or even cancer.
And this is just the beginning, sadly. Even if a farmer doesn’t intend to grow GM crops, wind carries the toxins to new crops. The effects of GM crops will outlast global warming and nuclear waste.
So, how do can we change this? Stop buying GMO products. If even 5% of of consumers stop buying GMOs, food producers and suppliers will be forced to change! Also, be wary of eating out. It can be exhausting, but ask your waiter to cook your food in butter, olive oil or ghee instead of GMO soy oil and canola oil. This market shift occurred quickly and successfully in Europe, we can do it!!
Here are the biggest GMO culprits, STEER CLEAR!:
- Beet sugar
- Zucchini and crookneck squash
For a full list, visit here. Want to learn more? (There’s SO MUCH MORE TO LEARN!) Check out the movies Food Inc., The Future of Food and King Corn.