(BeWellBuzz) Genetically modified foods (GMO) are those foods that are primarily derived from genetically modified organisms. These genetically derived organisms have undergone specific changes to their DNA using genetic engineering techniques that exploit the natural forms of gene transfer.
Are GMO’s Safe For You?
Genetically modified foods are subject to debate, ever since they were put in the market in 1996. Many critics object to GM foods due to safety issues and many other ecological and economical concerns. However, due to lack of labeling, the consumers barely know what products are genetically modified and which ones are suitable for use. Therefore, the use of GMO’s continues.
Here, is the list of top 10 foods that have been genetically modified
- Corn: According to FDA, genetically modified corn is now available for human use. However, it has been found that this kind of genetically modified corn was meant to create an insecticide, which when consumed could lead to problems with fertility.
- Soy: GM soy has been used for a variety of soy products including soy flour, soy beverages, and soybean oil. It is known that when hamsters were fed with the GM variety of soy, they showed increased mortality rate. Imagine this could happen to humans too!
- Cotton: GM cotton was designed to resist pesticides. While Chinese agriculture confirmed that genetically modified corn proved excellent for keeping pests away from the corn fields, many Indian cotton farmers have reported to have suffered from rashes due to exposure to GM cotton.
- Papaya: In 1999, Hawaiian Papaya was introduced which was genetically modified to resist papaya ringspot virus. Papaya ringspot virus (PRSV) is considered to hamper the production of papaya, which is why, transgenic papaya is now being developed in different parts of the world including countries like Thailand, Jamaica, Brazil, and Venezuela.
- Rice: Rice is a staple food for many countries in Asia. A genetically modified variety of rice has been introduced that is rich in Vitamin A. In a China Daily article, it was reported that GM rice posed potential health, economic and environment problems. GM rice has a tendency to develop allergic reactions, and there is an increased possibility of gene transfer due to GM rice.
- Tomatoes: In order to improve the shelf life of tomatoes, naturally grown tomatoes are being genetically modified too. GM tomatoes do not rot easily in transfers and exports. However, it was reported that when these tomatoes were fed to a few animal subjects, they died after sometime.
- Rapeseed: The GM variety of rapeseed is also known as canola, and it is popularly used in making canola oil. Today, honey can also be produced from canola. However, German food authorities confirmed that Canadian honey is heavily pollinated by GM rapeseed as most of the honey products coming from Canada contained pollen from GM rapeseed.
- Dairy Products: Nearly 22% of the cows in United States are injected with genetically modified bovine growth hormone (rbGH) for increased milk production. However, it has been reported that milk from those cows that have been treated with rbGH contained a high amount of IGF-1 (insulin growth factors-1), which has been found to cause breast cancer.
- Potatoes: GM potatoes are genetically engineered. It has been reported that mice fed with genetically modified potatoes contained high amounts of toxins in their system. Needless to say, GM potatoes pose a threat to human health, as well.
- Peas: There is a wide variety of GM peas available in the market. However, it has been known that genetically modified peas harm the immune system and is dangerous for human consumption. In fact, when a kidney bean gene was combined with that of peas, a protein was generated that could well function to reduce pests.
Genetically modified foods have often been associated with some of the strangest diseases including Morgellon’s disease, a condition that involves symptoms like the feeling of crawling black speckled materials under the skin. Many patients having this disease have also reported short term memory loss, change in vision and mental confusion.
American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM) has been warning use of GM foods and how these genetically modified foods are a threat to human health. However, the production and sale of GMO’s continues and it is left to consumers to decide whether it is suitable for consumption or not!
Next time you go to your supermarket for buying any of the above food items, do yourself a favor – avoid buying GM foods and choose the natural variety instead.