GMO – Genetically modified foods – what’s in my plate?

Do you ever get confused by statements and claims on food labels? If you are, you are not alone. These claims such as “antibiotic-free” “natural” “no added hormones” etc. are confusing and overloaded with the information which makes our grocery shopping more difficult. Usually, we see the “non-GMO” claim on food labels, but how much are we informed about it?

What is GMO?  

Genetically modified food produced from organisms that scientists have developed by injecting foreign genes into it. Scientists give animals and plants new characteristics by changing their genetic material. Some of the examples of GMOs are corn, cottonseed oil, canola oil, soybean etc. GMOs are also known as genetically engineered organisms or bioengineered organisms or biotech.

GMOs are modified for different reasons such as targeting to alleviate certain disease producing pathogens and to increase resistance to herbicides and pesticides which could damage entire crop.  But it is very much possible that such research for viral resistance can lead to the formation of new viruses and therefore new diseases too. The very first GMO plant was composed in 1983 and commercial sell of GMO foods starts in 1994.

Are they safe to eat?

The biotechnology industry poses no greater health risk of genetically modified foods. But some studies showed that there is no long term safety and well-designed testing of GMO foods.

One study highlights the concern about GMO foods, that consumption of GMO corn by rats identifies with increased organ failure. They found a negative impact on livers and kidney function of rats that ate genetically modified corn just for 90 days.

The American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM) also has taken aggressive stand against genetically modified foods.  They showed a serious health risks in particular areas such as allergy and immune function, physiologic and genetic health and reproductive health. They recommended that people should stay away from genetically modified foods for their long term safety. 

People want to know what’s in their food and more concerned about food safety and regulations, environmental impact, food labeling. 

About 75% food in the supermarkets is filled with genetically modified ingredients. And the leading four major ones to look out for are:

  1. vegetable oil
  2. soybeans
  3. sugar
  4. field corn
What I believe:

With all this confusing information flowing around from multiple sources, for the general population it could get very difficult to decide what to eat. In addition to the confusion, biotech industry is keeping no stones unturned to market and lobby their GMO products on the grocery store shelves. In all this midst it is most important to remember, simply say no to GMO!

Here are a few tips to fill your plate with natural foods which do not contain genetically modified ingredients:

  1. Pick organic – Choosing 100% organic food products is the surest way to stay away from genetically modified foods. Organic food products are the only regulated label  which stops the use of genetically modified food products.
  • Learn to recognize – Most regularly used genetically modified components can be found in processed foods such as soy, corn, canola oil and cottonseed oils.
  • Choose food that doesn’t use GMOs – Food manufactures usually add the information on their labels to indicate that they do not include genetically modified ingredients. Choose“non-GMO” food products or with labels which show there are no ingredients produced with help of bioengineering or biotechnology. Because choosing “nonGMO” food products specifically from these companies is an easy way to indicate the food industry that non-GMO foods are important to us.    
  • Go local and fresh – Support the local agriculture around you. Generally, small farmers who sell local foods tend to avoid GMOs. Therefore, it’s wise to stick to your local farmers market than the commercialized grocery stores for your fresh produce. They are fresher and therefore taste better too.

At the end of the day, you have the right to choose food goes into your plate. Agricultural and Biotechnology industry has silently established GMOs in many food products in the supermarket. I believe its time to become aware of GMOs and decide what we put on our meal plate with the help of making smart choices.

Eat Healthy, Stay Healthy & Keep Smiling! ?

GMO – Genetically modified foods – what’s in my plate?

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One thought on “GMO – Genetically modified foods – what’s in my plate?”

  1. Hello there! This post could not be written any better!
    Reading through this post reminds me of my old roommate! He always kept talking about this.

    I will forward this article to him. Fairly certain he will have a good read. Thanks for sharing!

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