By Dr. Mercola
When deciding what's healthy and what's not, it pays to take note of what the actual experts are saying, as opposed to just listening to industry propaganda regurgitated by talking heads in the mass media and government health agencies.
Wake Up World has assembled a list of foods that are avoided by people who know the facts.
Here are a few examples:
Genetically engineered (GE) foods: Not only do genetically modified (GM) foods encourage the massive spraying of insecticides, but studies have shown that pesticide-producing genes in these foods transfer to your intestinal flora.
GM foods come with a staggering environmental, political, economic, and social cost.
Canned tomatoes: Food can lining contains bisphenol-A (BPA), a synthetic estrogen that has been linked to many illnesses.
The problem worsens when the cans contain acidic food such as tomatoes, which leach BPA into the food.
Corn-fed beef: Cattle evolved to eat grass rather than corn.
But modern cattle are fed so as to fatten them up faster, not to keep them healthy.
The result is beef that is much less nutritious.
Microwave popcorn: Chemicals that line the bag, such as PFOA, have been linked to infertility in humans and various forms of cancer in animal tests.
To see the rest of the list, please see the original article.
Here, I'll focus on the issue of genetically engineered foods, as I believe that is one of the most pressing dangers facing us as a species.
As Humans, We are Part of the Ecological System
While industry giants like Monsanto hold fast to the claim that genetically engineered (GE) foods are completely safe, those who have actually taken the time to investigate this issue have come to horrific conclusions. Alternative terms for GE foods include genetically modified (GM), or GMO (genetically modified organism).
Everyone really needs to understand that agriculture is a system based on inter-related factors. In order to maintain ecological balance and health, you must understand how the system works as a whole, and realize that any time you alter one part of that system, you change the interaction of all the other components as well, because they work together.
This is the fundamental problem with genetically engineered foods of all kinds.
Seeds such as Monsanto's Roundup Ready corn, canola and soy are genetically altered to be able to withstand otherwise lethal dousing of the toxic herbicide Roundup.
While this may sound attractive at first, as in theory it should improve yield by cutting down on weeds, the end result is anything but beneficial… The weed control and increased yield premise has been found to be severely flawed, as farmers around the world are now losing acreage to glyphosate-resistant super-weeds at an alarming rate. According to the British Institute of Science in Society, the US has fared the worst, now combating 13 different glyphosate-resistant weed species in 73 different locations.
By ignoring the laws of nature and thinking they can fool it into submission, Monsanto and other biotech corporations are creating ecological imbalance that is already wreaking havoc on our environment, and this imbalance will ultimately trickle down and can destroy human health as well.
MOST Major US Food Crops are Now Genetically Engineered!
Many still don't realize just how much of our food supply has been genetically engineered (GE). As of this year, 93 percent of soybeans grown in the US are genetically engineered, as are:
- 86 percent of all corn
- 93 percent of canola
- 93 percent of cottonseed oil
Between 2008 and 2009, a full 95 percent of all sugarbeets planted were also Roundup Ready.
This means that virtually every processed food you encounter at your local supermarket that does not bear the "100% USDA Organic" label is likely to contain at least one GE component!
Earlier this year, the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) also deregulated genetically engineered alfalfa, which is a perennial crop commonly used in cattle feed, which will further contaminate animal products. There's even a great risk that GE alfalfa may contaminate organically-raised animals, as alfalfa is a perennial crop that can easily spread and end up in organic alfalfa fields.
Are You Listening to the Experts, or Falling for Industry Propaganda?
Dr. Don Huber is an expert in an area of science that relates to the toxicity of genetically engineered (GE) foods, and his warnings couldn't be more clear: genetically engineered seeds have already created a brand new organism that now threatens plant-, animal-, and probably human, health. Furthermore, the use of glyphosate, the active ingredient in the herbicide Roundup, is exacerbating the problem, as glyphosate has been found to cause a number of health problems in and of itself.
In the video below, Dr. Huber discusses both of these concerns.
Download Interview Transcript
In this recent interview, Dr. Huber explains how the introduction of glyphosate-resistance has had a direct impact on soil microbes. This has occurred because, again, agriculture is an inter-related system. Herbicides such as Roundup are chelators, which means they form a barrier around specific nutrients, preventing whatever life form is seeking to utilize that element from utilizing it properly. That applies to everything from plants to soil microbes, to animals and humans...
This may actually be one of the primary reasons why genetically engineered foods appear to be able to cause such profound health problems in those who consume them.
Glyphosate Destroys Soil Microorganisms, which Denatures Food
Glyphosate, even in plants genetically engineered to withstand it, affects about 25 different enzymes in the process of chelating (i.e. immobilizing) critical micronutrients. As a result, the nutritional efficiency of genetically engineered (GE) plants is profoundly compromised. Micronutrients such as iron, manganese and zinc can be reduced by as much as 80-90 percent in GE plants!
Naturally, when you consume these foods, you're no longer getting the essential micronutrients that these foods used to provide in your diet, and your health can suffer as a result.
But that's not all.
Roundup Ready crops are very heavily sprayed with Roundup, and the resulting glyphosate residue cannot be removed or washed off—it actually becomes part of the plant. As a result, humans are now ingesting far more of this herbicide than we ever have before because it's systemic through the entire plant.
Without Healthy Soils, Human Health is Decimated…
According to Dr. Huber, about 20 percent of the glyphosate migrates out of the plant's roots and into the surrounding soil. Once in the soil, the glyphosate kills beneficial soil microorganisms in the same way it kills weeds, because they have the same critical metabolic pathway. The thing we must all understand is that once you destroy the beneficial microbes in the soil, you've destroyed the food grown in it, because the quality of the food is almost always related to the quality of the soil, which depends on a healthy balance of microorganisms.
It is in fact the microorganisms in the soil that allow the plants to utilize the nutrients...
Are you beginning to sense the intricate inter-relatedness of the agricultural system?
Are you beginning to understand the importance of sustainable, environmentally conscious agriculture? If we want to live and thrive for generations to come, we simply cannot turn a blind eye to what's being done to our food supply, because without proper nutrition, we simply cannot exist…
New "Franken-Organism" Threatens Plant-, Animal- and Human Health
Dr. Huber has also blown the whistle on a brand new concern relating to genetically engineered crops—a groundbreaking finding that could spell absolute disaster for our entire food supply.
A brand new micro-fungal-type organism has been identified, which has been linked to what researchers are now calling Sudden Death Syndrome (SDS). The organism was initially identified by veterinarians around 1998—about two years after the introduction of Roundup Ready soybeans, which is one of the staple feeds. The vets were puzzled by sudden high reproductive failure in animals. While sporadic at first, the phenomenon has continued to increase in severity.
Dr. Huber was recently informed of a dairy experiencing a 70 percent miscarriage rate!
According to Dr. Huber, the cause-effect relationship between high reproductive failure and this new microbial entity has already been established, but the research has not yet been published. The reason for the delay is because they really do not know what the organism is!
"It's not a fungus. It's not bacteria. It's not a mycoplasma or a virus – [although] it's about the same size of a small virus… They have pictures of it… You can see the interactions with it. They can now culture it. It's self-replicating… If you have yeast, bacteria, or a fungus in the culture, this entity grows very well."
What is known is that:
- It's an entirely new entity, previously unknown to science
- It's definitely found in genetically engineered corn and soybeans
- It causes infertility and miscarriage in cattle, horses, pigs, sheep, and poultry
"We can anticipate with that broad spectrum of animal species, which is extremely unusual, that it will also [affect] humans," Dr. Huber says. "We've seen an increasing frequency of miscarriage and a dramatic increase in infertility in human populations in just the last eight to 10 years."
Earlier this year, Dr. Huber urged the USDA to investigate the matter and suspend approval of GE alfalfa until proper studies have been completed, but his warnings fell on deaf ears and GE alfalfa was deregulated earlier this year despite vigorous opposition…
Keep Fighting for Labeling of Genetically Engineered Foods
While California Prop. 37 failed to pass last November, by a very narrow margin, the fight for GMO labeling is far from over. The field-of-play has now moved to the state of Washington, where the people's initiative 522, "The People's Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act," will require food sold in retail outlets to be labeled if it contains genetically engineered ingredients. As stated on LabelitWA.org:
"Calorie and nutritional information were not always required on food labels. But since 1990 it has been required and most consumers use this information every day. Country-of-origin labeling wasn't required until 2002. The trans fat content of foods didn't have to be labeled until 2006. Now, all of these labeling requirements are accepted as important for consumers. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) also says we must know with labeling if our orange juice is from fresh oranges or frozen concentrate.
Doesn't it make sense that genetically engineered foods containing experimental viral, bacterial, insect, plant or animal genes should be labeled, too? Genetically engineered foods do not have to be tested for safety before entering the market. No long-term human feeding studies have been done. The research we have is raising serious questions about the impact to human health and the environment.
I-522 provides the transparency people deserve. I-522 will not raise costs to consumers or food producers. It simply would add more information to food labels, which manufacturers change routinely anyway, all the time. I-522 does not impose any significant cost on our state. It does not require the state to conduct label surveillance, or to initiate or pursue enforcement. The state may choose to do so, as a policy choice, but I-522 was written to avoid raising costs to the state or consumers."
Remember, as with CA Prop. 37, they need support of people like YOU to succeed. Prop. 37 failed with a very narrow margin simply because we didn't have the funds to counter the massive ad campaigns created by the No on 37 camp, led by Monsanto and other major food companies. Let's not allow Monsanto and its allies to confuse and mislead the people of Washington and Vermont as they did in California. So please, I urge you to get involved and help in any way you can, regardless of what state you live in.
- No matter where you live in the United States, please donate money to these labeling efforts through the Organic Consumers Fund.
- If you live in Washington State, please sign the I-522 petition. You can also volunteer to help gather signatures across the state.
- For timely updates on issues relating to these and other labeling initiatives, please join the Organic Consumers Association on Facebook, or follow them on Twitter.
- Talk to organic producers and stores and ask them to actively support the Washington initiative.