LET’S TALK HEALTH. What Do You Know About Genetically Modified Food? You Better Wake Up!

by | Nov 13, 2018 | 1 comment

Have you heard the term, GMO? It’s quite popular in today’s vocabulary. It’s an acronym for Genetically Modified Organism. It represents food that’s made from soy, corn, or other crops grown from seeds with genetically engineered DNA. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), GM seeds are used to plant more than 90 percent of corn, soybeans, and cotton grown in the United States.

Scientists genetically engineer seeds for many reasons. For example, they sometimes make changes designed to increase a plant’s:

  • resistance to insects
  • tolerance to herbicides
  • tolerance for heat, cold, or drought
  • crop yield

They also engineer seeds to give GM foods stronger colors, increase their shelf life, or eliminate seeds. That’s why we can buy seedless watermelons and grapes. Some GM foods also have been engineered to have higher levels of specific nutrients, such as protein, calcium, or folate.

Proponents of GM food contend that genetic engineering can help us find sustainable ways to feed people – specifically, in countries that lack access to nutrient-rich foods. The heartiness of some GM crops makes it so they can grow in marginal environments. The longer shelf life of some GM foods allows them to be shipped to remote areas.



Some people worry that GM foods may be linked to allergies, antibiotic resistance, or cancer. Others suggest these concerns are unfounded. Here’s what the research says.


Food allergies are a growing problem in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), food allergies in children under 18 years of age have increased; from 3.4 percent between 1997 and 1999 to 5.1 percent between 2009 and 2011.

Some people believe that spike is linked to GM foods. But there’s no evidence that GM foods in general are more likely to trigger allergic reactions than non-GM foods, according to a study from Harvard University.

Others raise concerns about the transfer of specific proteins from one plant to another in genetic engineering. Proteins found in a relatively small number of foods cause most allergic reactions. Tree nuts are one of the most common triggers.

In the mid-1990s, researchers examined a strain of GM soybean that was engineered to contain protein from Brazil nuts. According to their report in the New England Journal of Medicine, the soybeans triggered allergic reactions in people with Brazil nut allergy. Those soybeans never entered the market and aren’t sold to consumers.

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and World Health Organization (WHO) have since established protocols for GM foods. They require GM foods to be tested for their ability to cause allergic reactions. According to the Mayo Clinic, none of the GM foods that are currently on the market have been found to have allergenic effects.

Antibiotic Resistance

Antibiotic-resistant bacteria can resist antibiotics, making them hard to kill. According to the CDC, antibiotic-resistant germs infect two million people each year. Those infections kill at least 23,000 people per year.

Scientists often modify seeds using antibiotic-resistant genes in the genetic engineering process. Some people wonder if there’s a link between these GM foods and rising rates of antibiotic resistant bacteria. No studies have confirmed this claim, but more research is needed.


In 2013, the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology retracted a paper that linked the herbicide Roundup and Roundup-tolerant GM corn to cancer and premature death in rats. Due to concerns about the paper, the journal’s editor reviewed the researchers’ raw data and the peer-review process. They found the researchers had used too few rats, the specific strain of rats was prone to cancer, and the results were inconclusive.

Since then, the paper has been republished in another journal, Environmental Sciences Europe. The controversy surrounding the study’s findings has continued.

According to the American Cancer Society, more research is needed to assess the potential long-term health effects of GM foods.


SOURCE: HealthLine.

1 Comment

  1. Gneissguy

    One needs to understand the primary reason for genetic modification is not for human health, but for profit. 90% of all genetically modified crops are owned by one corporation, Monsanto/Bayer. And the majority of those crops are modified to be resistant to the effect of the Monsanto weedicide Roundup. Meaning that the crops conferred with said weedicide immunity can be doused with the WHO identified carcinogen and absorb it and not die, while all the weeds in the field wither and die…now ask yourself, when the crops absorb the carcinogenic weedicide into its tissues and it goes onto the developing food crops, what is the effect on humans that consume said foods?… Ask yourself that and consider that GMO’s are banned in most of Europe while the third world is used as America’s lab rats, like a modern day Tuskegee experiment