Updated: 23 Oct 2014
I remember as a kid our family would plant 100’s of vegetable seeds in mid May on the family farm. And this annual planting would produce a multitude of organic healthy vegetables for our family meals.
One of our main crops would be sold at the local market. What we didn’t sell or consume would then be canned as a provisional food source for our family and would mostly last until the next crops were harvested. But times have definitely changed from when I grew up.
For as long as I can remember the foods farmed by American families were the most nutritious and healthiest throughout the world. However, that distinguished honor is no longer the case. A lot of what’s responsible for this decay of our food source has to do with corporate greed. There are a few conglomerate giants and billionaire moguls that are greatly responsible for this changing global food bank and contributing effect on our genetics and overall health.
Let’s begin this topic by defining a few major players reengineering and manipulating our food banks and how they knowingly mutate our DNA. Also most consumers don’t know the foods industry is made up of 8-10 major food chain monopolies. But for the sake of simplicity I’m just going to use a few examples of how this reengineering of foods harms our health to make my point. In this way you’ll be able to better understand the economic complexity of why it is so hard to unravel and remove harmful food ingredients from our national food supply.
Monsanto has been producing man made GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) crop seeds and chemical food sweeteners (e.g., Aspartame brands: NutraSweet, Spoonful and Equal-Measure) for some time now. Many food products you consume from your local grocery store now contain these engineered foods. The likes of Procter & Gamble (P&G) foods corporation is one of the largest producers of products that are petroleum based and comprised of Genetically Modified (GM) crops produced from GMO’s seeds resistant to herbicides and pesticides as was found to be the case in the popular Pringles potato chip product.
P&G has made much news and reaped much criticism of late with regard to house hold products that are now known to have potentially carcinogenic ingredients [i.e., household cleaners, pet foods, cosmetics and personal care products]. To date they have failed to remove these harmful ingredients or failed to list GMO’s contained within our food products. Also corporations have been criticized for funding anti-labeling attempts to prevent GMO disclosure laws from becoming public knowledge, while also working to weaken Europe’s laws regarding toxins in household products.
Not so long ago, some 800,000 cans of Pringles potato chips had been recalled in Japan because the potatoes used to make the chips had the “gene-altered NewLeafPlus and NewLeaf Y components developed by Monsanto in the vegetables DNA! This gene altered potato is approved for consumption in the United States but not in Japan! So one has to wonder, why is the gene altered potato still sold within American markets and not the Japanese markets? And should this ban mean something to the American people? I think it should and the proof is in what P&G did next. The company decided to focus more on its house hold cleaners and beauty products.
They sold its Pringles business to the Diamond Foods Snack Company for $2.35b in 2011. Then in 2012 the Diamond deal fell apart and the Kellogg Company bought Pringles for $2.7b in cash.
Could it be that P&G and Diamond Foods Snack Company’s didn’t want the consumer backlash? Could it be that the new shareholder coalition “Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility” and GMO health risk connection is making sense to the 40 plus food companies [i.e., Safeway, Sysco, Whole Foods, Kellogg, Kraft, Heinz, Hershey’s, Starbucks, etc.]. The shareholder coalition message to these companies reports how Monsanto and GE foods are bad for Investors, consumer health and carries too much financial and liability risk.
And now this message has spread to the 8th largest economies in the world!
California now supports mandatory GMO labeling as consumers have supported a Ballot initiative in 2012. Over 80% of those polls support GMO labeling for consumers. Since California is the 8th largest economy in the world this initiative if passed would have a dramatic effect on changing consumer packaging and ingredient decisions nation-wide.
“The California Senate rejected on Wednesday a bill that would require labels on genetically-engineered foods. This is the second time in two years that labeling legislation has fallen short in the most populous and agriculturally-productive state.” [RT.com, May 31, 2014]
“Now Colorado and Oregon have ballot measure out to the voters to determine if their states will support the labeling of GMO’s on food ingredients.” [MirrorAthlete, 23 Oct, 2014]
Also in connecting these consumer dots it is interesting to note Monsanto and Procter & Gamble have the same institutional corporate owners. The top institutional owner of P&G foods is “Warren Buffett’s” Berkshire Hathaway, Inc., holdings, which owns ~$4.9b in P&G stock (NYSE: PG). Proctor and Gamble current revenues (ttm) are ~$83.68b. Also as of recent, Bill Gates invested and purchased 500,000 shares of Monsanto Stock (NYSE: MON) and supports the use of GM crop technology.
Warren Buffet also pledged to give away his wealth by donating most of his $44.1 billion to charity, where he recently gave away $1.52 billion to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. So now you can see how these mogul investors keep these man made consumer wheels and profits churning. It’s very difficult to make change to consumer product laws when windfall profits for investors, employee jobs, market economies and corporate holdings are at stake. These corporations have billions of dollars to fight consumer safety coalitions.
No matter how much money these corporate and institutional moguls have and/or control, animal studies tell consumers truths about GMO’s and impact on health.
Animal studies now show that Monsanto’s GMO corn is likely linked to organ damage and their Aspartame contributes to diabetes and obesity which they will continue to pay billions to defeat any one that states its harmful to health and prove their case using bias research results.
There are reported toxicity reactions divided by the estimated reporting rate and where scientific studies corroborate that chronic aspartame ingestion and health damage has affected well over one million consumers in the U.S. This is not so hard to fathom especially when you think of all the sodas and processed foods consumed on an annual basis. And these artificially sweetened products is one of the primary causes of our diabetes and “near” obesity epidemic in this country.
It is also not well known by consumers Aspartame “Monsanto’s artificial sweetener” is 200 times sweeter than sugar per equivalent volume. And is also one of the most taste altering addictions that stimulaties consumers taste preference for rich high fat calorie foods. Science shows us Aspartame products are also responsible for Formaldehyde poisoning! How’s that? Aspartame is an unstable chemical when stored (warehousing) too long in warm temperatures, the chemical properties of the artificial sweetener within soda cans for example, converts to another type of dangerous chemical.
Monsanto has contributed greatly to changing our entire food chain by genetically altering many of our food crops DNA molecular structure through GMO technology and super sweetening our foods.
“These GM crops have never before been an integral part of the human or animal diet prior to the mid-latter 20th century. The health consequences for those who consume GM crop products are currently unknown. Various scientific animal studies reveal to us that GM livestock feed and processed food ingredients correlate a clear negative impact on the function of the kidneys and liver. It is more important than ever that more research focuses on the toxicity and mutation these GM crop varieties may have on our vital organs and DNA.
Okay, so then again one must wonder… What does Japan and European countries know that the American people don’t?
The arguments of Monsanto are becoming rather thin and transparent to all and won’t be hid for too much longer as was realized in Japan. No matter how often a company’s merged and/or sells food brands and/or food businesses… Once GMO labeling becomes law, there will be no place for these companies to sell their toxic GM and other chemical ingredients!
Looking at Genetically Modified Crops a Little Closer.
GM is an engineered process where a recombinant (genetic recombination) technology uses DNA molecules from different sources to combine and create a new set of genes within our crop seeds. This is done in order to make our crops more resistant to decay, insects, chemical fertilizers, etc. In this way farmers can mass produce volumes of what appears to be healthy food for consumer markets.
It’s not just the GMO corn and potatoes that the consumers should be aware of when purchasing product within the local marketplace. For example, corn is not only available off the husk, but also comes canned, it’s in our cooking oil, processed as corn starch, etc., and products such as cereals and baked snacks (as in seen in our Pringles example) are processed from the same crops which likely have artificial sweetener additives as well! Let’s not forget about the livestock being fattened up by GM corn feed. Now you can see how our food and personal use products have been reengineered within our food chain and consumer products. And to what degree will it cause health problems down the road.
Is it any wonder “Corporate controlled and protected artificial sweetener testing continues at Monsanto, torturing the ethics of academic medicine?” [Prevailing Winds, Issue 1, 1995]. They do so without fear of retribution because the FDA, “our consumer protection agency” turns a blind eye by accepting these manipulated corporate studies as safe consumer products. [US Congressional Record, Volume 131, No. 106, August 1, 1985, pages S10826-S10827]
Why is this happening? Faster, cheaper, better right? Wrong! It’s all about corporate, institutional and governmental greed, power and control. We the consumers are being hit on two fronts: we are paying the price by slowly losing our good health and paying higher health care costs in the process which is a major contributor and overburden on our health care resources and national debt problems!
I’ve listed the Top GM Food Crops sold in our non-organic food markets that may contain GM foods. If you want to know more about artificial sweeteners and GMO crops, simply see the referenced links below.
Corn – Monsanto revealed 50% of American sweet farm growers now use GMO seeds that have been modified to create its own insecticide. Mice studies show when fed with GMO corn, offspring are smaller and there were fertility problems.
Tomatoes – GM tomato seeds prevent the vegetable from easily rotting and have been specifically engineered for longer shelf life. Some mice fed these tomatoes after a couple of weeks died.
Dairy Products – Monsanto has created a recombinant (genetically modified) bovine growth hormone that’s injected into 22% of our U.S. dairy cows to increase insulin growth factor (IGF-1). It is warned by scientists that increase in IGF-1 in humans have been associated with colon and breast cancer.
Potatoes – Mice fed potatoes with Bacillus thuringiensis var. Kurstaki Cry 1 had toxins in their bodies. Although studies show stability of the Cry1 toxin in the mouse gut, there have been studies that show just the opposite results.
Peas – A gene from kidney beans was inserted into the DNA of peas to create a protein that functions as a pesticide. This GM crop has been found to cause immune responses in mice. However, it is not known the impacts on human consumption.
Rice – South East Asia’s rice is now GM to contain high levels of vitamin A. It is not known if rice production in the U.S. in now GM rice varieties with human protein genes to help thwart infant diarrhea in 3rd world countries. Unknown allergic reactions and other mutated gene transfers are now of a serious public health and environmental concerned as reported by an online journal, China Daily.
Soy – Products that are manufactured from the soy bean now have the GE resistive herbicide DNA structure within various foods (Soy products: flour, tofu, beverages, oil, pastries and baked products). Hamsters that were fed GE soy products resulted in infertility and a high mortality rate.
Cotton – Cotton has been GM to resist pesticides like corn and soy. Cotton is considered food because cooking oil can be extracted from the seeds and consumed. Thousands of Indian farmers suffered severe rashes upon exposure to Chinese agricultural methods in order to kill the cotton bollworm.
Rapeseed – Canola is made from the edible Canadian Rapeseed crop; which most are familiar as a popular processed cooking oil and margarine. Honey can also be produced from GM rapeseed. As much as 1/3 of all pollen present in Canadian honey may likely be GM pollen. For lack of animal studies it is unclear how these GM food sources will impact our health.
Papaya – Papaya crops produced in Hawaii was modified in 1999 to be virus-resistant. Also, Monsanto provided Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, Coimbatore, India the GM technology to further develop a resistant ring spot virus papaya for India. For lack of animal studies it is unclear how these GM food sources will impact health.
Now as if consumers need more to worry about. Research is also beginning to show links to Morgellon’s Disease correlated with GM recombinant foods.
This disease a few years back was a mystery, or something one conjured up in the head. But the opposite is being shown to be the case. Patients have presented strange skin irritations, skin anomalies and most specifically a mysterious tiny blue, red and black fiber growth that protrudes from an itchy skin lesion on areas of the body and where GM foods are concentrated, sold and consumed. There appears to be a direct correlation with these fiber samples that are not of human DNA origins, but in fact when comparing these fiber samples, Ahmed Kilani (researcher) found they belonged to a fungus. Then it was found by Vitaly Citovsky (biochemist) and determined that these fibers contained a substance called “Agro bacterium.” This substance is used commercially to produce genetically-modified plant foods!
For now, the lack of national labeling requirements makes it hard to know which foods have GM ingredients. You’re also now aware ~10 of our major farmed food staples may be partially or fully produced from GM seeds. And other products such as dairy, fish, meats and processed snack foods could have GM ingredients.
Recommendation – If you currently have immune, or other health, illness or disease issues, or are concerned about GM foods consume more organic foods. The best prevention to mitigate possible health risks from GM foods is to shop as organic as possible and purchase more foods labeled “certified organic.” Be sure to vote for GMO food labeling laws when it gets on your states ballots as it is your right to know what your consuming!
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Author: Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET. 2014 Copyright. All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Inc., www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.