Updated: 22 September 2018
I remember long ago our family would plant hundreds of vegetable seeds in mid May on the family farm. This annual planting would produce a multitude of organic vegetables for meals.
Also one of our main crops (pumpkins) would be sold at the local market in October.
What we didn’t sell or consume would then be canned as a provisional food source that would last until next years crop was harvested.Â Times have definitely changed from when I grew up.
For as long as I can remember the foods farmed by American families were the most nutritious and healthiest throughout the world. However, that distinguished honor is no longer the case. A major factor for the decline of nutrition within the food industry has to do with escalating costs of farming foods-to-table. This has led to farming foods in labs before it hits the shelf.
Most consumers don’t know food industry’s are made up of 8-10 major food chain monopolies. But for the sake of simplicity I’m going to use a few examples of how reengineering of lab farmed foods is harming health. In this way it is easier to understand why it’s so hard for consumers to remove harmful foods from the diet… especially when labels don’t disclose GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) information. Monsanto has been producing man made GMO crop seeds and chemical food sweeteners (e.g., Aspartame brands: NutraSweet, Spoonful and Equal-Measure) for some time now.
Many food products consumed from the local grocery store now contain more engineered ingredients than one can imagine. The likes of Procter & Gamble (P&G) foods corporation is one of the largest producers of products that are petroleum based and comprised of Genetically Modified (GM) crops produced from GMO seeds resistant to herbicides and pesticides as was the case in the popular Pringles potato chip product.
Not so long ago, some 800,000 cans of Pringles potato chips had been recalled in Japan because the potatoes used to make the chips had the gene-altered NewLeafPlus and NewLeaf Y components developed by Monsanto in the vegetables DNA! This gene altered potato is approved for consumption in the United States but not in Japan! So one has to wonder, why is the gene altered potato still sold within American markets and not the Japanese markets? And should this ban mean something to the American people? I think it should and the proof is in what P&G did next.
They sold its Pringles business to the Diamond Foods Snack Company for $2.35b in 2011. Then in 2012 the Diamond deal fell apart and the Kellogg Company bought Pringles for $2.7b in cash. Thereafter P&G decided to focus more on its house hold cleaners and beauty products. These products have know carcinogenic ingredients [i.e., household cleaners, pet foods, cosmetics and personal care products].
Could it be that P&G and Diamond Foods Snack Company’s didn’t want the consumer backlash? Could it be that the new shareholder coalition Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility and GMO health risk connection is making sense to the 40 plus food companies [i.e., Safeway, Sysco, Whole Foods, Kellogg, Kraft, Heinz, Hershey’s, Starbucks, etc.]. The shareholder coalition message to these companies reports how Monsanto and GE foods are bad for Investors. Could these decisions to bail out have anything to do with consumer health and liability risk.
GMO Corporations have been criticized for funding anti-labeling attempts to prevent disclosure laws from becoming public knowledge, while also working to weaken Europe’s laws regarding toxins in household products. And now these messages have spread to the largest economies in the world!
California consumer advocates continue to supports mandatory GMO labeling as attempted during a Ballot initiative in 2012. Over 80% of polls support GMO labeling for consumers. Since California is the 8th largest economy in the world if the initiative passed it would have had a dramatic effect on changing consumer packaging and ingredient decisions nation-wide.
“The California Senate rejected on Wednesday a bill that would require labels on genetically-engineered foods. This is the second time in two years that labeling legislation has fallen short in the most populous and agriculturally-productive state.” [RT.com, May 31, 2014]
“Now Colorado and Oregon have ballot measure out to the voters to determine if their states will support the labeling of GMO’s on food ingredients.” [MirrorAthlete, 23 Oct, 2014]
“While state-level initiatives continue, other groups are focusing their attention on passing labeling legislation at the national level. Among them is the Just Label It (JLI) campaign, a national coalition of more than 600 diverse organizations working for the mandatory federal labeling of genetically engineered (GE) foods (JustLabelIt.org 2018). In time I believe GE labeling laws will become a mandatory federal law.
It’s interesting to note Monsanto and Procter & Gamble have the same institutional corporate owners. The top institutional owner of P&G foods is Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, Inc., holdings, which owns ~$4.9b in P&G stock (NYSE: PG). Proctor and Gamble current revenues (ttm) are ~$83.68b. Also Bill Gates invested and purchased 500,000 shares of Monsanto Stock (NYSE: MON) and supported the use of GM crop technology [data reviewed – Oct 2014]. I’m not sure about their positions to date.
It’s very difficult to make change to consumer product laws when windfall profits for investors, employee jobs, market economies and corporate holdings are at stake.
Regardless – No matter how much money these moguls have and what interests they control – They can’t hide the animal studies that tell consumers truths about GMO’s and potential impact on human health. Animal studies show how Monsanto’s GMO corn is likely linked to organ damage and Aspartame as a cause of diabetes and obesity.
There are reported toxicity reactions divided by the estimated reporting rate and where scientific studies corroborate that chronic aspartame ingestion and health damage has affected well over one million consumers in the U.S. This is not so hard to fathom especially when you think of all the sodas and processed foods consumed on an annual basis. Artificial lab farmed sweeteners is one of the primary causes of diabetes and “near” childhood obesity epidemic in this country.
It is also not well known by consumers, Aspartame Monsanto’s artificial sweetener is 200 times sweeter than sugar per equivalent volume. And is also one of the most taste altering addictions that stimulate consumers taste preference for rich high fat calorie foods. Science shows us Aspartame products are also responsible for Formaldehyde poisoning! How’s that? Aspartame is an unstable chemical when stored (warehousing) too long in warm temperatures, the chemical properties of the artificial sweetener within soda cans converts to another type of dangerous chemical.
Monsanto has contributed greatly to changing our entire food chain by genetically altering many food crops DNA molecular structure – through GMO technology and super sweetening of foods.
Genetically modified crops have never been an integral part of the human or animal diet prior to the mid-latter 20th century. The health consequences for those who over consume GM crop products are currently unknown. Various scientific animal studies reveal to us that GM livestock feed and processed food ingredients correlate a clear negative impact on the function of the kidneys and liver. It is more important than ever that more research focuses on the toxicity and mutation GM crop varieties may have on vital organs and DNA.
Looking at Genetically Modified (GM) Crops a Little Closer.
GM lab farmed products is an engineered process where a recombinant (genetic recombination) technology uses DNA molecules from different sources to combine and create a new set of genes within crop seeds for example. This is done to make crops more resistant to decay, insects, chemical fertilizers, etc. In this way farmers can mass produce volumes of what appears to be healthy food for consumer markets using less chemical sprays and fertilizers.
It’s not just the GMO corn and potatoes that the consumers should be aware of when purchasing product within the marketplace. For example, corn is not only available off the husk, but also comes canned, as cooking oil, or processed corn starch, etc. Products such as cereals and baked snacks (as in seen in our Pringles example) are processed from the same crops which likely have artificial sweetener additives as well! Let’s not forget about the livestock being fattened up by GM corn feed. Now you can see how our food and personal use products have been re-engineered and connection to health problems.
Is it any wonder Corporate controlled and protected artificial sweetener testing continues at Monsanto, torturing the ethics of academic medicine? [Prevailing Winds, Issue 1, 1995]. They do so without fear of retribution because the FDA, our consumer protection agencies turns a blind eye by accepting these corporate studies as safe consumer products. [US Congressional Record, Volume 131, No. 106, August 1, 1985, pages S10826-S10827]
Why does this type of regulatory protection continue? I believe it has a lot to do with corporate, institutional and governmental greed, power and control. This marketplace dynamic is contributing to higher health care costs and more obese children and adult health problems than any other time in history.
I’ve listed the Top GM Food Crops that likely contain GM DNA. If you want to know more about artificial sweeteners and GMO crops, simply see the referenced links below.
Corn – Monsanto revealed 50% of American sweet farm growers now use GMO seeds that have been modified to create its own insecticide. Mice studies show when fed with GMO corn, offspring are smaller and there were fertility problems.
Tomatoes – GM tomato seeds prevent the vegetable from easily rotting and have been specifically engineered for longer shelf life. Some mice fed these tomatoes after a couple of weeks died.
Dairy Products – Monsanto has created a recombinant (genetically modified) bovine growth hormone that’s injected into 22% of our U.S. dairy cows to increase insulin growth factor (IGF-1). It is warned by scientists that increase in IGF-1 in humans have been associated with colon and breast cancer.
Potatoes – Mice fed potatoes with Bacillus thuringiensis var. Kurstaki Cry 1 had toxins in their bodies. Although studies show stability of the Cry1 toxin in the mouse gut, there have been studies that show just the opposite results.
Peas – A gene from kidney beans was inserted into the DNA of peas to create a protein that functions as a pesticide. This GM crop has been found to cause immune responses in mice. However, it is not known the impacts on human consumption.
Rice – South East Asia’s rice is now GM to contain high levels of vitamin. It is not known if rice production in the U.S. in now GM rice varieties with human protein genes to help thwart infant diarrhea in 3rd world countries. Unknown allergic reactions and other mutated gene transfers are now of a serious public health and environmental concerned as reported by an online journal, China Daily.
Soy – Products that are manufactured from the soy bean now have the GE resistive herbicide DNA structure within various foods (Soy products: flour, tofu, beverages, oil, pastries and baked products). Hamsters that were fed GE soy products resulted in infertility and a high mortality rate.
Cotton – Cotton has been GM to resist pesticides like corn and soy. Cotton is considered food because cooking oil can be extracted from the seeds and consumed. Thousands of Indian farmers suffered severe rashes upon exposure to Chinese agricultural methods in order to kill the cotton bollworm.
Rapeseed – Canola is made from the edible Canadian Rapeseed crop; which most are familiar as a popular processed cooking oil and margarine. Honey can also be produced from GM rapeseed. As much as 1/3 of all pollen present in Canadian honey may likely be GM pollen. For lack of animal studies it is unclear how these GM food sources will impact our health.
Papaya – Papaya crops produced in Hawaii was modified in 1999 to be virus-resistant. Also, Monsanto provided Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, Coimbatore, India the GM technology to further develop a resistant ring spot virus papaya for India. For lack of animal studies it is unclear how these GM food sources will impact health.
As consumers need more to worry about… Research is also beginning to show links to Morgellon’s Disease correlated with GM recombinant foods.
This disease a few years back was a mystery, or something one conjured up in the head. But the opposite is being shown to be the case. Patients have presented strange skin irritations, skin anomalies and most specifically a mysterious tiny blue, red and black fiber growth that protrudes from an itchy skin lesion on areas of the body and where GM foods are concentrated, sold and consumed. There appears to be a direct correlation with these fiber samples that are not of human DNA origins, but in fact when comparing these fiber samples, Ahmed Kilani (researcher) found they belonged to a fungus. Then it was found by Vitaly Citovsky (biochemist) and determined that these fibers contained a substance called Agro bacterium. This substance is used commercially to produce genetically-modified plant foods!
For now, the lack of national labeling requirements makes it hard to know which foods have GM ingredients. You’re also now aware ~10 of our major farmed food staples may be partially or fully produced from GM seeds. And other products such as dairy, fish, meats and processed snack foods could have GM ingredients.
Recommendation – If you currently have immune, or other health, illness or disease issues, or are concerned about GM foods – consume more organic foods. The best prevention to mitigate possible health risks from GM foods is to shop as organic as possible and purchase more foods labeled “certified organic.”
Be sure to vote for GMO food labeling disclosure laws when it gets on your states ballots as it is your right to know what your consuming!
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Author: Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET. 2014-18 Copyright. All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Inc., www.mirrorathlete.org, Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.