Monday, November 17, 2014

GMO - Genetically Modified Organisms and your Foods

Corn in Field
The business of genetically modifying foods has drawn criticism for decades and still there is no clear-cut data that can totally condemn this practice.

Agri-Business is the largest proponent of GMO’s as they focus on changes that allow for larger production volumes of certain foods.

On the other side of the fence are the people who can show that, unchecked; many of these modified foods have been proven as being dangerous to the health of the consumer. More and more of us will need to take a position as this practice expands around the world.

So many packaged foods today can include GMO foods and ingredients that everyone needs to recognize the keywords on labels that indicate you are looking at a food that is itself a genetically modified organism or has GMO ingredients.

The major crops that are genetically modified and sold on the US market today are;

  • Alfalfa (100% of the Alfalfa used in the US is GMO and it is used in animal feed),
  • Beets (over half of the Sugar in the US is produced from Beets which are of course GMO's),
  • Canola (Almost all Canola Oil is genetically modified)
  • Regular Corn (85% of US grown regular corn is GMO but the majority is used to make ethanol, fructose, animal feed and processed foods)
  • Sweet Corn (Recently Monsanto started producing Sweet Corn that is genetically modified, and it may not be labeled,due the lack of any specific labeling laws)
  • Cottonseed (almost all is GMO),
  • Milk (if the milk is labeled as containing rBGH (recombinant Bovine Growth Hormone is considered to be a GMO product)
  • Squash, Zuchinni and Yellow (presently only a small percentage of these Squash are GMO,
  • Soy (93% of US Soy crops are GMO)
  • Soy Milk (there are no major producers of non-GMO Soy Milk) and of course, 
  • the Oils made from these modified foods. 

Presently, if you are one of the many people who are concerned about GMO’s then you are safer using unmodified versions of Olive, Safflower and Sunflower Oils (to name a few), as corporations have not yet started producing any modified versions of them.

Here are just a few of the GMO KEYWORDS that you will find on the labels of many foods that are Genetically Modified:

  • Amino Acids, 
  • Ascorbic Acid, 
  • Aspartame, 
  • Citric Acid, 
  • Emulsified, 
  • Emulsifiers, 
  • “from concentrate”, 
  • Fructose, 
  • Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein, 
  • Lactic Acid, 
  • Maltodestrins, 
  • Modified Corn, 
  • Modified Soy and 
  • MSG (Monosodium Glutamate).
The best advice is to read your food labels, question everyone and be vigilant in your food choices if you are concerned about what these companies are doing to your foods.

by DON Bobbitt, 2014