By Rachel LeRoy
Genetically modified foods have been quietly increasing in the country. Experts say around 60 to 70 percent of foods in the U.S contain genetically modified ingredients. Consumers are no longer eating real food; we are eating fake food like products. For a better understanding, GM foods are produced from genes artificially inserted into the DNA, which would never occur in nature. Although some may argue the need and importance of genetically modified organisms, the research proves that the consequences are harmful, and more people need to become aware of them.
The original intent of GMO foods was positive, and many still argue the importance of them. Unfortunately, the original intent did not turn out the way it was expected. In the GMO debate, many believe genetically modified foods will end world hunger because the food will be more nutritious, require less pesticides, and GMOs are safe and therefore do not require consumer awareness. Even the U.S. government states: genetically modified crops are safe, healthy and provide much needed food in starving nations. For every one of these arguments, there are more factual and superior counter arguments. GM organisms are something only just introduced in the last thirteen years.
GM foods may produce higher yields, but the food is less nutritious. GM farming is cheaper and manufacturers will do anything to make you love their food and want more of it, just like any other company. Many believe the only reason GM foods were created was for profit. Numerous health problems increased after GMOs were introduced. The American Academy of Environmental Medicine site cited animals eating GMO foods showing organ damage, gastrointestinal and immune system disorders, accelerated aging and infertility. A French GMO experiment was done by feeding rats a life-long diet of GMOs just like MSG. The rats suffered from large amounts of damage to multiple organs and tumors the size of golf balls. Not only did the rats suffer from damage, but they became overweight. All of these horrible results explain why GMO producers do their best to try and stop further studies of GM products.
Not only are GMOs bad for your health, they are also bad for the environment. A study by a Washington State University professor linked GM crops to a 404 million pound increase in pesticide use. Cross-pollination is a major concern. Pollens from GM plants can affect non-GM plants, making it impossible to get rid of GM plants if needed.
The most unacceptable part of the GMO epidemic is manufacturers falsely labeling their products. Chemical companies will do all they can to only benefit themselves. The only way to do this is by tricking the consumer. The most popular situation is using the label “all natural.” Little does the consumer know, the Food and Drug Administration has not developed a definition for the use of the term ‘natural.’ In other words, there may be many chemicals in the product, but it is still allowed to say “all natural.” For example, Arizona beverages are labeled “all natural” even though they contain the chemical HFCS. The last and only study of chemicals added to food was ordered by President Richard M. Nixon in 1969 and covered just a few hundred chemicals. There have been many new chemicals and GM foods since 1969. Food is very important and should not be given to people if it is unknown to be completely safe. It is appalling to know that making money is way more important than the health of people.
Pro-GMO arguments have been proved wrong in more ways than one. There may be more food, but people do not know how useful these food like products really are. Genetically modified foods should be better studied and tested. People need to become more aware and change the way they eat to become happier and healthier. To get more involved, you can sign the petition “Just Label it!” More than a million people have signed it to ask the FDA to start labeling genetically modified foods. Experiments prove terrible consequences can be avoided with more accurate research.