Could GMOs Be a Real Health Threat? Part 1
Greetings from Dr. Thorburn:
Whether we like it or not, GMOs are a part of the American dietary landscape and they are something we all need to become more informed about. I thought I would take a couple of weeks to discuss what they are, why they are here and what you personally can do about them.
Genetically Modified Organisms or GMOs are found in up to 80% of the food sold in American supermarkets. A GMO is the result of a laboratory process where genes from the DNA of one species are extracted and artificially forced into the genes of an unrelated plant or animal. The foreign genes may come from bacteria, viruses, insects, animals or even humans. 1
The top ten most common GMO foods are soy, corn, canola oil, cotton (cottonseed oil), milk (cows are given hormones to develop and produce milk faster), sugar, aspartame, zucchini, yellow squash and papaya.
Most fresh produce, with the exception of those listed above, are non-GMO. Dried beans, grains, nuts and seeds are non-GMO. Meats, unless they are organically raised, have been fed GMO corn.
The easiest way to avoid GMOs is to buy food – especially any packaged food — that is 100% organic. Every day more and more foods proclaim on their labels and in their advertising that they are non-GMO. Non-GMO is desirable. Food the way nature made it. It’s time to learn more.
Why GMOs? Stock answers from food manufacturers include that science is finding ways to make heartier plants that are better able to withstand weather and come to harvest in less time. Who could argue feeding more people quicker with the ever growing world population? It is interesting to note that over half of the 28 European Union countries want nothing to do with GMOs.
GMOs are hidden in a variety of foods. For example, high fructose corn syrup is a common inexpensive sweetener made from corn that is used in sodas, juice drinks and ice tea mixes as well as prepared foods including breakfast cereals, cookies and cakes, condiments and more. Most often the kind of corn used to make high fructose corn syrup is GMO. And then there is corn starch, which is used in so many prepared foods.
Canola oil is commonly used in packaged salad dressing (as is soy oil), chips and sauces while cottonseed oil is often found in cereals, breads and snack foods. And unless these products are certified organic, it is likely that the oils used to make them are GMO.
Another GMO controversy revolves around Round Up, the herbicide produced by Monsanto. Round Up’s active ingredient is glyphosate, which when consumed has been shown to cause nutritional deficiencies, especially minerals, and system toxicity. The World Health Organization’s cancer authority, the International Agency for Research on Cancer, has determined that glyphosate “is probably carcinogenic to humans.” Monsanto’s first Round Up ready crops – which means the plants have been engineered to stand up to Round Up exposure so that the herbicide can be used to get rid of accompanying weeds – was soy, introduced in 1996. Current Round Up ready crops include soy, corn, canola, alfalfa, cotton and sorghum with wheat in development. Round Up ready seeds are sterile, so that farmers can no longer use the best seeds from a previous crop. Each year they must buy new seeds from Monsanto.
No one really knows what affect this bombardment of GMOs on the American diet will have over a period of years, even generations. Next week I will share some information on what some knowledgeable scientists are saying about GMOs and studies that caution us against going down the road we are traveling.
1. Institute for Responsible Technology
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Until next time…
Yours in health,
Thorburn Chiropractic and Wellness Center
A Winner of the Top Doc L.A. Award,
Increasing Health & Vitality for Over 30 Years
1612 W. Burbank Blvd., Burbank, CA 91506
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