More than ten years ago, Europe banned genetically-modified foods simply by letting consumers know what they were. The ban happened without government assistance — the pressure put on the food industry by consumers was all it took.
Yet here in the U.S., genetically-modified food is consumed daily. Our lack of awareness is the biotech industry's biggest advantage. For example, bacteria often used as pesticide may be introduced into a food crop. Now the pesticide is part of the plant's DNA, rather than on the outside. This food is not required to have a label that tells us there are pesticides in it and, since genetic code cannot be scrubbed off, therein lies a huge health concern for al of us. Many food crops are being modified to be resistant to pesticides. This means they will be sprayed with more and more pesticide without label requirement.
Millions of Americans are exposed to potential dangers — infertility, cancers, autoimmune disorders and allergies. And there may be more. The studies are pretty clear that the only ones benefiting from genetically altering our food supply are the fat cats running the biotech industry.
This month is "Non-GMO Month." How wonderful that there is a movement looking out for our health and welfare! And more good news: All it takes to be part of it is to be informed. It's not like we all have to go out and stand in a picket line or knock on doors. No one has to be convinced, as we all want to eat good food — real food that nourishes the body. We want to protect our health and the future health of our children who are most at risk.
We just need to band together. We need to ask our grocers to withdraw genetically-modified food products from the market. Ask them to carry more organic foods. With every purchase we make, we are part of the demand..
Whole Foods (my happy place) has entered all of their brand labels into the Non-GMO Project. They are taking a position of leadership in getting the message out. Here is a link you can go to, to find out which products are safe: http://www.nongmoshoppingguide.com.
I hope you'll take a moment to check it out so when you are standing in the aisle of the grocery store, you'll be able to take a position of power as well, by making choices that protect your family.
David Suzuki, geneticist, author of more than 30 books and a winner of the UNESCO prize for science, states, "The ability to introduce alien genes into a genome is an impressive technological manipulation but we remain too ignorant of how the genome works to anticipate all of the consequences, subtle or obvious, immediate or long-term, of those manipulations. The concerns of biotech critics warned that our knowledge is too primitive to avoid unexpected and deleterious consequences."
Jeffrey Smith is the founder of the Institute for Responsible Technology and is doing us all a huge favor by leading the movement to ban GMOs. He is working to make sure that soon you'll see a label that says "Non-GMO Project Verified "meaning that there will be a third party system to verify a claim that something is non-GMO.
I hope you are a smart shopper and choose organic foods whenever you can. If you have questions or comments about the links or information in this column, as always, I'd love to hear from you.
I'll see you in two weeks.
Love & health,