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Doctors Warn: Avoid Genetically Modified Food
This article was first printed in the Jan/Feb 2010 issue of the Organic Broadcaster, published by the Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service.
Organic farmers do not use genetically modified organisms in organic production. However, even as the organic industry remains stalwart in its skepticism of GMOs, they are proliferating in the food and fiber being produced around us. Larger percentages of GMO-adulterated food are making it to grocer's shelves every day. It is critical that organic farmers learn how to defend the value of their non-GMO production. Strong evidence is growing that shows the negative consequences of the use of GMOs in farming practices. The following is a list of critical research and recommendations around the safety and consequences of GMOs. Jeffery Smith, Executive Director of the Institute for Responsible Technology, offers here background to help organic farmers support their important stance opposing the use of GMOs in agricultural production. For more resources and information, go to www.responsibletechnology.org.
On May 19, 2009 the American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM) has called on all physicians to prescribe diets without genetically modified (GM) foods to all patients.(1) They called for a moratorium on genetically modified organisms (GMOs), long-term independent studies, and labeling. They stated, “Several animal studies indicate serious health risks associated with GM food,” including infertility, immune problems, accelerated aging, insulin regulation, and changes in major organs and the gastrointestinal system. “There is more than a casual association between GM foods and adverse health effects. There is causation…”
Former AAEM President Dr. Jennifer Armstrong says, “Physicians are probably seeing the effects in their patients, but need to know how to ask the right questions.” Renowned biologist Pushpa M. Bhargava believes that GMOs are a major contributor to the deteriorating health in America.
Pregnant women and babies at great risk
Food that produces poison
The Bt-toxin produced in GM plants, however, is thousands of times more concentrated than natural Bt spray, is designed to be more toxic, (9) has properties of an allergen, and cannot be washed off the plant.
GMOs provoke immune reactions
Animals dying in large numbers
Worst finding of all—GMOs remain inside of us
Warnings by government scientists ignored and denied
Opting out as guinea pigs
Citizens need not wait for more research to take the doctors advice: avoid GMOs. Consult the Non-GMO Shopping Guide (www.NonGMOShoppingGuide.com). Even a small percentage of people choosing non-GMO brands could force the food industry to remove all GM ingredients. Thus, AAEM’s non-GMO prescription may be a watershed for the US food supply.
International bestselling author and independent filmmaker Jeffrey M. Smith is the Executive Director of the Institute for Responsible Technology (IRT) and the leading spokesperson on the health dangers of GMOs. He is the author of Seeds of Deception and Genetic Roulette: The Documented Health Risks of Genetically Engineered Foods. IRT's Campaign for Healthier Eating in America is designed to create a tipping point of consumer rejection of GMOs, forcing them out of the market. www.ResponsibleTechnology.org.
Oliveri et al., “Temporary Depression of Transcription in Mouse Pre-implantion Embryos from Mice Fed on Genetically Modified Soybean,” 48th Symposium of the Society for Histochemistry, Lake Maggiore (Italy), September 7–10, 2006.
See for example, A. Dutton, H. Klein, J. Romeis, and F. Bigler, “Uptake of Bt-toxin by herbivores feeding on transgenic maize and consequences for the predator Chrysoperia carnea,” Ecological Entomology 27 (2002): 441–7; and J. Romeis, A. Dutton, and F. Bigler, “Bacillus thuringiensis toxin (Cry1Ab) has no direct effect on larvae of the green lacewing Chrysoperla carnea (Stephens) (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae),” Journal of Insect Physiology 50, no. 2–3 (2004): 175–183.
John M. Burns, “13-Week Dietary Subchronic Comparison Study with MON 863 Corn in Rats Preceded by a 1-Week Baseline Food Consumption Determination with PMI Certified Rodent Diet #5002,” December 17, 2002 http://www.
See L Zolla, et al, “Proteomics as a complementary tool for identifying unintended side effects occurring in transgenic maize seeds as a result of genetic modifications,” J Proteome Res. 2008 May;7(5):1850-61; Hye-Yung Yum, Soo-Young Lee, Kyung-Eun Lee, Myung-Hyun Sohn, Kyu-Earn Kim, “Genetically Modified and Wild Soybeans: An immunologic comparison,” Allergy and Asthma Proceedings 26, no. 3 (May–June 2005): 210-216(7); and Gendel, “The use of amino acid sequence alignments to assess potential allergenicity of proteins used in genetically modified foods,” Advances in Food and Nutrition Research 42 (1998), 45–62.
A. Pusztai and S. Bardocz, “GMO in animal nutrition: potential benefits and risks,” Chapter 17, Biology of Nutrition in Growing Animals, R. Mosenthin, J. Zentek and T. Zebrowska (Eds.) Elsevier, October 2005
“Mortality in Sheep Flocks after Grazing on Bt Cotton Fields—Warangal District, Andhra Pradesh” Report of the Preliminary Assessment, April 2006, http://www.gmwatch.org/archive2.asp
See memos at www.biointegrity.org