Why buy Non-GMO Food?
Impacts on bees, birds and butterflies
Research is continuing into the impact that Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) have had on frogs, bees, butterflies, birds and microorganisms that live in soil and water. Monarch butterfly populations have decreased by fifty percent, and experts are exploring whether GMOs have contributed to their shrinking habitats. Colony collapse disorder in bee populations may also be linked to the ever-increasing presence of GMOs in nature. Roundup herbicide, often used on genetically modified crops, has been linked to high rates of mortality and organ problems in amphibians and other small animals.
GMOs and non-GMOs cannot co-exist
As things are right now, wind and cross-pollination will eventually cause genetically modified plants to become uncontrollable. A recent study in North Dakota showed that 80 percent of the wild canola that researchers tested had at least one genetically modified gene. Researchers have found genetically modified canola plants growing wild in California and the Dakotas, threatening to pass their herbicide-resistant genes on to weeds. Cross-pollination is a necessity for the propagation of plants, but crops engineered with suicide genes for male sterility are now being promoted to stop the spread of transgenes.
Danger to the environment
72% of crops in the United States are engineered to tolerate herbicide. The weeds that these herbicides used to kill, however, are now coming back stronger and bigger, making herbicide-resistant “superweeds” that need larger quantities of more deadly pesticides to eradicate. Cross-pollination between non-GMO plants and modified crops is widespread as well, which reduces the number of plant varieties in the wild.
In America alone, superweeds resistant to the glyphosate/Roundup herbicide have taken over ten million acres of farmland.
Links Between GMOs and Autism
Genetically modified ingredients are now prevalent in many of the processed convenience foods we love, but the research about how humans are affected by these engineered ingredients is still incomplete. Independent studies suggest that there may be a link between GM foods and autism but, in reality, GM technology is still a new and developing science; there has not been enough long-term research to know with certainty how these organisms interact with the human body.
Pesticides and digestive health
The principal function of pesticides and herbicides is to kill unwanted insects and plants. Glyphosate – the most widely used herbicide on GMO crops – is known to impact the gut bacteria of humans. Jeffery Smith's recent movie Genetic Roulette notes a correlation between more GMOs in our diet and increases in food allergies and digestive health problems. Both GMOs and pesticides have been linked to increased danger of certain kinds of cancer. Further health concerns include infertility and heart disease.
With new information coming out about GMOs every day, it is an interesting time to follow the news. Until more definitive studies are complete, though, it pays to read labels and know what is in the food you eat. If you are unsure about your food, consider eating something less processed, or possibly something organic. Nearly 88% of all corn grown in the United Sated has been genetically modified; consider eating foods with little to no added corn syrup or high fructose corn syrup.