The term “GMO” (or genetically modified foods) is used a lot. We are told that we should eat organic (or even better…local + organic) but we aren’t really given much more than that. I often hear from people, “Well there’s no proof that GMOs really affect us.” Which might be true. But it’s true because our country embraces genetically modified crops. We have fully embraced GM foods on a regulatory level. GM corn, soybeans, canola, and sugar beets have made their way into approximately 80% of our processed grocery store items. Gross.
Where will you find genetically modified crops?
These are currently the top eight genetically modified food crops on the market. In addition, GM alfalfa is now approved for use as animal feed. So what foods?
- Canola (canola oil)
- Sugar from sugar beets
- Hawaiian papaya
- Some varieties of zuccini
- Crookneck squash
So what kind of harm will GMOs cause?
According to Mercola.com, one 2009 Brazilian study discovered that female rats fed GM soy for 15 months showed significant changes in their uterus and reproductive cycle, compared to rats fed organic soy or those raised without soy.
Unfortunately, you have no way of knowing whether the soy you’re eating is genetically modified or not, because GM foods do not have to be labeled as such in the US. However, when you consider that 94 percent of all soy grown in the United States is genetically modified in one way or another, you can be virtually guaranteed that if a food product contains soy, it’s probably genetically modified, unless it’s labeled “100% USDA Organic.” Read Mary’s post about why we avoid soy at all cost here.
I also avoid corn. 88% of our corn grown in the U.S is genetically modified. Recently studies have come out where they are now tracing toxins (which are found in GM crops) in human blood. Wow.
So where does that leave us?
Seriously you guys…corn, soy and canola oil is in SO much of the food we eat on a daily basis. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed and throw in the towel. Luckily we’ve done a bit of research and we’ve found some amazing resources to help keep anything genetically modified out of your house and your body:
- This is a fabulous PDF that is called Non-GMO Shopping Guide. It helps you identify brands that are safe!
- This is a GREAT plan for the summer. It’s called 100 Days of Real Food. You can get it for free and I’m excited to dive in.
We hope to post many more articles about GMOs but this is a good start. What are your thoughts? Do GMOs concern you?