By Matt Stone
I just got off the phone with my eBFF Joni
Cox. We were discussing potential plans to release “180 Radio” with live-streaming interviews, Q and A where peeps call in, and a lot of other real cool things.Joni, the broadcastin’ broad (who mentioned on the call that she is flexible and can juggle… I think she’s in the wrong industry), would be the primary host and overseer of 180 Radio. But Joni is of course not a brainwashed disciple of mine. Like today’s Tom Sawyer, her mind is not for rent. She kept going on and on about how she wanted to make sure “my message” went out.Turned out what she was the most apprehensive about was the fact that she is a very vocal basher of GMO – genetically modified foods and products, which is something that is rarely discussed on this site, if not downright brushed aside as if it doesn’t exist.
This spawned a very interesting conversation that yielded some pretty sensible conclusions – not just about GMO but a lot of the “big bad wolves” in the healthiverse.
Should you avoid GMO foods? Are GMO foods “bad for your health?”
I think they are, and the odds that GMO’s do more harm than good to our individual health as well as to the health of our’society, ecosystem, and beyond is highly likely if not certain.
So it seems obvious that we should avoid?GMO foods. And we should all stand on top of the mountain shouting about the horrible villainous GMO’s. Right?
Doing this for as long as I have, and working one-on-one with?many hundreds of people over the last couple years, has shown me two important things… the importance of individualization and the importance of prioritization. Different people need to hear different things. Different people need to prioritize different things. Like I said in the book Garrett and I have coming out in September…
“For every junk food junkie in need of a clean diet to displace pizza and ice cream, there is a neurotic clean-eating health Nazi or obsessive dieter in need of eating pizza and ice cream to displace kale, brown rice, egg whites, and grassfed beef.”
Would?you tell someone with a full-blown eating disorder, already?paralyzed with?worry about phytic acid, nightshades, gluten, casein, PUFA, goitrogens, oxalates, fructose, meal frequency, insulin, and 48 other things… AND looking for a reason not to eat, that there’s a bunch of nasty stuff about GMO – hidden in our food supply without?labels, that will irreversibly impair one’s health in unforeseen and creepy mad-scientist ways?? Of course not.?Folks like that?need to reconnect with eating for pleasure, remember their favorite foods, stop reading labels, books, and blogs, and return to normalcy as much as possible. Any talk of “good” and “bad” foods makes the problem worse, not better.
On the other side of the spectrum, would you tell?a prediabetic?with gout, hypertension, and a 50-inch waist eating fast food 10 times a week to not worry about the quality of their food?? Of course not. They could probably benefit tremendously from the PUFA, GMO, MSG, Trans-fat sermon in heavy doses – getting inspired to improve the nutritional quality of their diet and put a little more effort into self-care.
That’s why there’s room for multiple messages. That’s what Joni and I talked about, and that’s just scratching the surface of our lengthy conversation and just one loophole often missed by people on a?crusade against?fill-in-the-blank evildoer. Others included of course the social and lifestyle?considerations of health-conscious eating, how we can only pick so many battles without driving ourselves nuts, etc.
Not all health problems on earth are magically cured by eating more carbs and calories obviously?(my main crusade). It just-so-happens that a big chunk of the internet health lurkers?are causing themselves health problems by avoiding both – intentionally?or inadvertently. My?general message and focus has changed over the years to meet the needs of the?audience that has found me. I hope you understand that.
What’s the final word on genetically modified food?? GMO’s suck! Just the idea of them and the cryptic corporate interests fueling their proliferation is enough to?concern me.I’very much look forward to the day when GMO foods are no longer part of our food supply. I will feel more relaxed eating Frosted Flakes, and that will be one less thing for the Worrier Warriors to choke on. (I’m not really sure what that last sentence means, but it sounds cool).
What do you think about GMO’s? Irrational phobia amongst the alternative health community and prominent conspiracy theory sensationalists??Or major A#1 priority?
P.S. – The forums had some problems with registration early on,?and?it’s now fixed, but you will have to re-register if you failed to receive a confirmation email containing a password. Do that HERE.
I have a brother-in-law that seemed to be interested in nutrition/healthy eating but the the last few months has been posting these pro-GMO posts, almost like he works for Monsanto. He seems to think that GMOs are bad is way overblown by the alternative health movement. He posts these studies showing supposedly that GMOs show no real difference in health vs. organic foods. He thinks people that favor eating organic foods over non-organics are just plain stupid.
As far as organic v.s. non organic goes the studies do show that nutrition wise there is no to very little difference. The difference lies in the pesticides and ( I believe) taste. There is a list of the cleanest and dirtiest organic foods. There are some non organic foods that have very little to no pesticide residue, sweet potatoes for instance. There are some foods like broccoli that are harder to clean of they residues and really not much more expensive organically. I usually shop accordingly to try to get the most bang for my buck but if I can’t I don’t worry to much. As far as g.m.o goes there is a real possibility that the increase in the natural plant pesticides in these foods are causing sensitivity issues in some people. I think time may tell on that one
I meant cleanest and dirtiest non organic foods
There actually may very well be nutrient differences, but the studies normally take a couple of vitamins and study only those. Like they will determine that vitamin C levels are all the same and proclaim that there are no nutrient differences. They are not studying the levels of all minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, etc. and then coming to a conclusion.
Very true. I am sure soil quality and micro nutrients go hand in hand
Yeah, I’ve seen studies that show organically grown plants have higher antioxidant content. It makes sense when you think about it…
If you were to rub yourself down in hand sanitizer and wear a gas mask everywhere, you would not develop antibodies to germs, right? In the same way, plants that are sprayed with pesticides and are grown in chemical fertilizers don’t have to try as hard to stay healthy…so they don’t develop polyphenols which are what protects them from bugs and disease and are also antioxidants. And so good for us to eat. A great example of how a flaccid, stress free life makes you (and your tomatoes) weak.
I’m pretty sure the organic foods used in these studies came from farms very different from your local CSA. As per USDA organic standards, pesticides are allowed as long as they’re not man made. Level of toxicity is not a problem, and there are no restrictions on how much can be applied (and no data is collected/recorded, so we don’t really know). If the bigger farms can get around selling their veggies at a premium simply by following the lax USDA standards, they’re probably going to do that rather than worry about soil quality. For organic farmers that don’t want to use toxic pesticides, good soil quality is a must as it’s the best defense against pests. And that’s where the nutrients come from–the soil.
Yeah, an organic vs. non-organic study I saw compared only 2 or 3 vitamins. From my limited understanding, vitamins are mostly the product of sun/photosynthesis, while minerals mostly come from the soil. It would make sense, then, that vitamin content may not be much different…but what about minerals? Why don’t they compare all the common vitamins and minerals?
Because that would show very different results, which the researchers don’t want to see. It’s very easy to set up a study to reach the outcomes you want, and there is a lot of scientific pressure to confirm conventional wisdom (in all areas of scientific research, not just nutrition). For all the hoopla about wanting groundbreaking research, those who actually have groundbreaking findings that refute “what we know” often get shunned by colleagues, can’t get future grants, etc.
I agree. That’s why I scoff at the idea of peer-reviewed studies being some type of unbiased truth delivered from Heaven.
When I watched the report on a certain news channel that will remain unnamed, they seemed fairly smug about it and seemed to be thumbing their noses at the stupid organic people who would spend more money for ” virtually ” the same product. Some people see the organic and g.m.o. Thing as a liberal, hippie issue and immediately draw a line in the sand. Much like with global warming this makes them immune to any facts or research on the subject. To be fair though I think the report was designed to make the average family, that doesn’t have a whole lot of extra money, feel a little better about their food choices. Kind of like telling an orthorexic that its alright to eat to eat that piece of pizza.
All of the MSM reported this the same way. I know plenty of non-liberals who try to eat organic food, avoid GMOs, etc. And on the global warming front, I know someone whose academic career was pretty much ruined because their research ran counter to the party line. This stuff transcends your pet political issues.
There actually haven’t been any good scientific studies showing that GMOs are harmful in any way. The absolute worst thing that has been shown is that some allergens can follow into other crops. All of these seeds have been scrapped for other projects. GMO food DO NOT show any difference over other foods. None of the foods you eat (with the exception of wild caught fish) are the way they would have been 100, 200, 1000 years ago in the wild because we’ve been genetically modifying them for centuries. This is just a faster way to modify your foods.
The organic / non-organic point is entirely separate. Pesticides are not good to eat. GMOs =/= pesticides.
How about this one:
I’m no longer orthorexic, so maybe this scares me less than it should, but I’ll keep it in mind.
Avoiding GMO’s is important for me….but I don’t lose sleep over it if I’ve eaten something that I know is GM- like corn on the cob for 4th of July. Basically I try to avoid it, but at times I want to eat out and I know most likely a large part of that meal is going to be GM’d. I hope one day to be able to say that I don’t consume anything but at this point I am not there yet.
oops, consume anything that’s GM’d!
Thanx! Very interesting that this is the topic today. I was thinking about it on my walk. The truth about gmo’s is that they may end life on this planet as we know it. Seriously! I’m not kidding. Then again they may not. I’m still seriously not kidding. How will they end life as we know it? Not in the way you might think. Recently a farmer in Oregon found gmo wheat in his field he realized this because he was trying to eradicate it with herbicide and it would not die. The thing is gmo wheat is not legal( So at least that’s comforting news for people that like wheat products). Monsanto says they have no idea how it got there. This stuff is supposed to be on lockdown. But that’s not the point. The real scary part is that they are now starting to find these pesticide resistant genes in weeds. There is genetic crossing going on. The potential could (and I emphasize could because I am projecting here) be devastating to the world food crop. This cross genetic mutation is not only a problem because gmo fields are now infiltrating non gmo fields of the same species( mainly corn) but cross species mutations could potentially cause epic food shortages and failures of entire crops. There are definitely people with more of a scientific backgrounds that may say I’m talking out the other end. If I am please let me know. I am only talking from watching other man made disasters develop and seeing these headlines on the news. On the other hand sometimes things don’t turn out quite as bad as we think they will. Australia has had many man made natural disasters introduced over the years and there still humming along. Only time will tell. On a personal level though I try to stay away from eating the stuff if I have the opportunity but am not going to worry about it to much if I do.
I am anti GMO, and I support the destruction of GMO crops, like happened with GMO sugar beets in Oregon recently. http://shiftfrequency.com/michael-sweeney-revolt-against-mongressanto-gmo-crops-torched-in-america/
As Jdubs pointed out, that shit is contaminating non-GMO crops, and the fact that we aren’t given a choice or ANY kind of labeling of this poison just proves what a farce of a country that the US has become.
GMOs are banned in much of Europe, and they have been destroying GMO crops. That’s what needs to happen in the US, and it needs to happen ASAP. Sadly, most of the population here is too anesthetized with fluoride and GMO corn derived HFCS to be able understand that they are being slowly poisoned.
I think Monsanto and the other corporations pushing GMOs need to be eradicated, along with their poisonous food, and their management all needs to be put into jail to protect the rest of society from their insanity.
To paraphrase Scent of a Woman “If I was the man I were 5 years ago, I would take a FLAME THROWER to this GMO crop”
In other words: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lp3kcHchD1Y&t=1m44s
(I apologize if I was ambiguous in any way shape or form with this post. :-)
I suspect that GMO’s *in themselves* and out of context aren’t that bad. If the only thing that was happening when you ate GMO rice or wheat or whatever was that it contained a minor genetic difference. But there’s a LOT more to it than just that.
First, the fact that it’s an industrial product created for the financial benefit of agribiz NOT for human health should give anyone serious pause.
Second – and most damning, to me – is that the sole purpose and value of most GMO’s in crops is to make them “Roundup Ready” (Roundup is Glyphosate). That means that any and all GMO crops will have been treated with Glyphosate, almost by definition; if the package says “GMO” it might as well say “Glyphosate.” It has been demonstrated that Glyphosate is NOT 100% gone from the final crop (in spite of Monsanto claims), and also that it can cause significant health problems. Autism has been linked to Glyphosate for example.
Here’s the first link that appeared on a search:
So for me, GMOs = Glyphosate = BAD
I’m so glad to read this, because I truly feel that GMOs are one of the biggest threats to the health of my family. I refuse to buy them and rarely eat anything that I am fairly certain contains them. I agree that it’s not something that I would harp on to someone with an ED, but otherwise I do tell people because it’s crazy how little most people know about how GMOs are produced and marketed. And how little we know about their effects on human health.
I still think GMO’s just need to go.
The rest of the world is on it, they’re banned in Europe and now whole countries in South America…. is they don’t want it, – which was the origin behind the green revolution – feeding the world, then let’s just get back to eating real foods…
I think their days are numbered Lindsay. One reason I haven’t worried about them too much is I do feel they will be banned pretty soon. There’s just too much pressure and too many countries out there that have already successfully beaten them down. We’re next.
I hope you are right!
“I do feel they will be banned pretty soon” .. nice thought, but pure wishful thinking IMHO.
I don’t know what the official story is, but GMOs aren’t banned in Europe in the sense that they’re not grown there. While I lived in Sweden recently, the first ever GMO potato was to be grown near my home, on a trial basis.
While Bolivia banned GMOs, it’s a ten year moratorium. I remember another moratorium event in recent history post-Chernobyl and see where we’re now in Europe with nuclear energy.
According to an online brochure I read by the department of Agriculture in Sweden, GMOs are predicted to become widely accepted in the near future. Yes, there’s a lot of outcry at the moment, but mass psychology can work in ways we don’t anticipate. Unfortunately, opinion shapers know a lot more about mass psychology than we do or care to understand more about.
I’ve read about the future acceptance of GMOs elsewhere in ‘predictive’ literature, so it’s probably wise to keep fighting regardless of whatever small victories we gain. I think for the mass of people, this whole GMO thing is too emotionally traumatic to buy into for the long term and perhaps that’s what will fuel future acceptance more than anything. For those kind of people, the grimmer the picture of GMO doom, the more likely they are to switch to the other side. Especially since it’s so pervasive and seemingly difficult to avoid.
Well, I should add after further investigation that activism managed to put a stop to GMO potato cultivation in Sweden. Let’s hope it sticks.
I truly believe GMO’s are really that bad, but I’m not doing that much to help stop Monsanto because I continue to buy things with GMO’s, particularly soda. I think in the future I will go more extreme, but I am one of those people who used to be really obsessive over these things so I had to stop caring.
I won’t eat corn or soy unless it is organic. I recently posted a photo of 2 ears of corn left out for birds and squirrels. Animals don’t need labeling to know what NOT to eat! http://www.makeitsomindset.com/GMO-corn
Unfortunately, this Frankenfood is out of the box, and it’s doubtful that we’re going to be able to stop its spread. These mad scientists are going crazy! GE is being done with animals as well! The genes of fish are being introduced into strawberries. (can you imagine how bad that will taste?). The theory being: fish don’t freeze under water (at least while they’re alive), and producers want to keep strawberries from freezing during very cold weather.
My advice: avoid it at all costs- especially if you are young and thinking of reproducing!
Eeeew! Strawberries should just be strawberries. People are messing around with our food waaaayy too much.
Just saw something about splicing spider genes with a goat to produce spider silk in the goats milk. Apparently spider silk is stronger than Kevlar and this will allow the mass production of it.
If I think about it too long, GMOs scare the crap out of me.
I heard about them years ago in a little hippie mountaineering shop. They had Greenpeace guide on avoiding GMO foods and the lady behind the counter clued me in.
We don’t buy much of anything with GMOs in them. The only thing I think that most likely has GMOs in it is if we buy ice cream with corn syrup or ice cream/chocolate chips with soy lecithin in it. We might have it in a few other things. We’re poorer this summer, so we’ve had to buy some frozen Costco pizzas and burritos for cheap meals.
We GMOs eat when we eat out too (not on purpose).
They have the ability to destroy much of our food supply, they have Roundup on them, and they are only made so that Big Ag can roll in the GMO-dough.
They are not a viable source of food for people. When I first started avoiding GMOs, one of the main arguments was that GMOs were feeding people in poorer and drought-stricken countries. But they have destroyed crops, people can’t save the seeds and have to spend money on new GMO seeds each year, and so on.
The fact that Bill Gates is a GMO-pusher also makes me stay away from them when I can.
I heard that people in Boulder County, Colo are trying to ban GMO crops.
I don’t know that we know either way, if they’re gonna kill us all or if they’re innocuous. It’s probably a case by case thing. After all, we have been genetically modifying the shit out of shit for ages now….none of your cultivated apples are anything like what they’d be naturally. Try planting an apple seed, all you’ll get is some sour ass knobby thing only good for cider or vinegar. No doubt splicing a tomato with alligator genes is a bit weirder than grafting apple trees, but automatic hysteria over the fact that we’re “modifying genetics” makes me roll my eyes.
That being said, I’m not interested in the stuff, I’d prefer it stay the hell off my plate and if there is even a chance that the garbage will taint and destroy the food supply (and it could, potentially, in a number of ways) then I say let’s get ’em off the market. I know the U.S is dragging it’s feet in even letting the consumer KNOW that their food is genetically modified, but again, we export so much grain and stuff and other countries are banning them left and right, it’s only a matter of time till we’re forced to comply. I hope. Fingers crossed.
I live next door to a GMO corn field and I cringe every time I see the crows feasting on the gleanings:(
I tend to believe that on most subjects the truth lies somewhere in the middle. Things are usually not as bad as the very sensitive hysteria people would like us to believe but is also not quite as wonderful and safe as the sunshine that big business would like to blow up our asses.
On that note however there is the ” potential” to create a situation that would make the Irish potato blight look like a walk in the park. And I still believe that that’s more so where the problem lies more than us ingesting the stuff.
We have not been genetically modifying for ages. We have been breeding hybrids, which is a very different thing. Hybrids use natural selection within a species. GMOs use horizontal gene transfers from completely different species. Absolutely unrelated processes, and you cannot compare them.
I have no problem with selectively breeding high-sugar fruit. I have a huge problem creating a tomato with fish genes.
Thank you for clearing that up Amy. Um, can I get an “Amy-en?” Does that work. Guess not.
How do hybrids use natural selection? Aren’t we the ones doing the selecting? Growing from clones and bypassing natural breeding, growing mutant fruits that couldn’t reproduce on their own if they tried, breeding toxins out of grains that are there for their own defense…that ain’t natural. Maybe the definition “genetically modifying” is wrong. I mean, we are indeed modifying the genetics of plants and animals to suit our interests, but perhaps a better word to encompass it all is “genetic engineering.” Which we’ve been doing for ages.
But my point is still the same. Just because something is “not natural” or not the way it is “supposed” to be does not mean it is inherently bad. And that’s a lot of what you hear from folks who are anti-GMO. I am not a fan of GMO’s and I avoid them whenever possible. I feel that too much is unknown about their safety and anyway, I support a non-industrial ag model anyway. And I agree that they have the potential to do a number on the ecosystem, though straight industrial farming itself can and does do that just fine as well.
I wish people were as up in arms about corn and soy monocultures and the use of herbicides and pesticides and jam-packed feedlots and battery cage hens as they are about GMO’s. People just get the shivers over it because it sounds freaky. Not talking about anyone participating here, just your population at large. I went to a Rusted Root concert ten years ago and all these hippies were passing out all this anti-GMO literature…and it was all just weird scare tactics about the unnaturalness of it…there are better reasons to be against things. If people are persuaded to be anti-GMO by a simplistic argument, a similarly simple argument could convince them to believe it’s ok.
Julia, I agree. I get a bit tired with the anti-GMO stuff, and other issues too where the dilemma has been overly simplified and silly arguments are used. It’s interesting that we’re supposedly in the most scientific of times, yet facts are becoming more and more irrelevant by the day, especially in political discourse. For sure, a similarly simplistic pro-GMO argument may easily win them over too. Whatever appeals to our emotions.
You are right that there is nothing inherently wrong with the idea of GMO, but it’s the empirical studies on the effects of the current attempts that show how far we still have to go before we reach a point where it is safe.
No we are not genetically modifying, we are genetically selecting. The genes were already there. We just brig them out through breeding.
I agree with Amy. At the beginning of the year, Mother Earth News did an article about Hybids vs GMOs. They are not the same thing.
I’ve heard GMOs referred to as “GE-food” also. When I first found out about them in 2001 (I think), people were opposed to them because GMO foods had NOT had extensive testing before being being put into our food supply. And nobody (even now) knows the ramifications they have on our food supply today. I think many countries have been very wise to ban them.
The seeds are cost prohibitive (farmers must buy new GMO seeds each season). In fact, I believe they contribute to crop monoculture.
Another thought I have: Tt can be so difficult to kill GMO plants, so it may be hard for some farmers to convert their fields to non-GMO crops. They don’t want to get sued by Monsanto for “accidentally” having GMO crops show up in their fields.
I think getting them out of our food supply is a wise idea and I’m glad that more people are on board with it.
I agree with that article, too. I don’t think growing hybrids and making today’s “GMO’s” uses the same process or garners the same results. If folks read my original comment and thought that’s what I was saying, I’m sorry.
I think if people read your comment and get stuck on the first paragraph…It’s always difficult to present an opinion that doesn’t fall into the usual, most obvious dialectic.
Some people are down on hybrids too, but they don’t understand that it’s just advanced plant breeding. I prefer not to grow them because I like to save seed and they aren’t as true to seed as open pollinated crops, but there is nothing else wrong with them. In fact, Hybrids are often healthier, more vigorous and more disease resistant. GMO’s are very different and a bad idea in general. It is a tempting idea and the potential is actually pretty high I think once it is further developed, but it is too risky and the fact that genes have a way of replicating themselves inspite of our best efforts to stop them is reason enough to keep these things under wraps. Any legitimately cautious approach to GMO experimentation would have to be extremely well controlled and in the case of wind and insect pollinated crops, that is next to impossible. Mostly, it is also just unnecessary. We need better farm practice, and diligent traditional breeding, not this high tech stuff. An outfit in Canada has released a non-browning GMO apple and others are working on redfleshed apples. Both can be achieved by traditional breeding methods, and are being actually. GMO’s are another way to give a bunch of graduating students jobs figuring out ways to make this technology work for the profits of very powerful interests. Once you have that profit motive in there it’s going to be bad news, and almost all research these days is either performed by, or beholden too, big money interests. Of almost as much concern, hell maybe even more, is that these same interests are seeking increased control of the food supply and crop diversity in other ways. A draconian law was recently submitted in the EU to make it illegal to grow any seed variety not registered and approved by some commission and that place had to be held by payment as well. Public uproar modified it to allow seed saving for home gardeners and small seed companies, but it effectively limits the growth of those small companies to 10 employees. The modifications to the law are good news, but it still completely sucks and they are still chipping away. Every time something like this happens, the bar is reset again. Also recently, the pollen of patented plants is controlled. That means if your neighbor grows a patented variety and it pollinates the corn seeds your grandma gave you, the patent holder has some legal recourse. I’m not sure what, but some. In the case of GMOs claim for payment has been made when accidental pollination has occured in farmer’s fields.
I’m not so optimistic about getting rid of GMOs. We’ll see. I hope so, but I can see it going either way at this point. And, as someone said, getting rid of them may be quite difficult.
I think you could compare hybrid and GMO plants to mixed breed dogs versus a cat/dog mix…. GMOs are just freaky!
More like a cat/wasp mix or something.
Control the food supply, control the people. Also when people say we need g.m.o’s to help feed the world that’s bullshit. Most starvation in the world is purely political. Also we throw away almost fifty percent of our food in this country every year. I believe Better organization and more political will would go along way towards feeding the world but then again where is the money in that. Speaking of controlling the food supply, look into the c.e.o of nestle talking about his plans for corporations like his to control the world water supply. That’s even creepier. If you take heavy corporate control of food and water supply combined with increasing drought and severe weather from global warming, it looks like we could be in for some fun times in a few short generations.
Steven e–Yes, that new EU law is pretty freaky, and puts the EU in a different light than what Americans are used to. The modifications are very weak because they can be removed without customary voting. The whole thing is absolutely insane.
I read your whole comment and agree with a lot of what you have to say. :) I shared the Mother Earth News article because it helped me understand the differences between the two, maybe it’ll help someone else too.
Monoculture = Very Bad Idea
Even if all the tinkering is producing safe food for people to consume the fact that it is spreading into other fields is a problem for me. I happen to have taken horticulture in college and our professor was very clear on the danger of our modern farming method with fewer varieties of various crops. More variety means that there is a better chance that there will be plants that withstand whatever it is that nature throws at us, be it major weather changes, insects, or disease.
So if you were wondering why TPTB built a seed bank to save seeds in the Arctic then here is one reason.
For thousands of years humans have been changing the genetics of many of the plants that we eat. Actually, humans have changed the genetics of food crops so much so, that many of the fruits and vegetables that we consume today are technically “cultigens”.
A cultigen is a plant that has been deliberately altered or selected by humans. And a cultigen cannot survive without the aid of humans. So, today much of our food crops/plants would go extinct if humans did not cultivate and take care of them. And to me , when you have changed the genetics of a plant so much that the plant can no longer survive without human intervention then you know that you have made some major changes to that plants genetic makeup. And for the most part, humans created these cultigens and started to make those genetic changes to these plants thousands of years ago.
So, over the course of the last few thousand years humans have changed the genetics of plants so much so that many of the plants that we now eat are completely dependent upon us for their very survival/existence.
But the GMO’s have genetic changes that are much more drastic. And personally, I don’t eat GMO’s whenever possible.
You don’t make new genes by breeding. You only select out of what’s there ready. Totally different.
The thing that pisses me off about it is that Monsanto has become such a big bully that no farmer stands a chance against them now. I don’t see US banning GMO’s anytime soon because there’s too much money and political crap now.
I agree with you on that fact that the U.S. will not ban this stuff anytime soon. Not so long ago Monsanto had some legislation piggybacked onto a bill that would keep congress from going after them for certain things. I’d have to go look it up to remember the details. I think that the legislation failed also killing monsanto’s bid but it did make me take note that there is something definitely going halls of power. When a business can persuade our congress people to slide in a law that will keep our congress from being able to hold that business responsible, you know there is something wrong.
We produce half as much wheat as china but we are the worlds largest exporter. We basically export half of what we produce.
This was a reply to you Julia . I wound up up here :)
I hate that too. And I cannot believe how many small farmers have lost their livelihoods over these horrible court cases. I agree that banning GMO’s will be hard, but I wonder what we’ll do about exporting? Don’t we provide a huge amount of grain to the rest of the world? Aren’t we like, the bread basket or something?
Perhaps other countries keeping our GMO food out of their country might pressure more farmers to not grow it.
When they found the GMO wheat a few months back, I remember reading that a majority of that wheat was normally exported to a country that has banned GMOs. I wonder whatever became of that.
Right, I heard that about Oregon too. And it’s what got me thinking of the major economic consequences we could suffer from the rest of the world banning our food. That, combined with VT, CT and I think now ME passing labeling laws, things could get hard for Monsanto. Awwwww.
I was really disappointed when the CA proposition for GMO labeling didn’t pass. Because as CA goes, so goes the nation! Every Christmas when I freak out over getting lead poisoning from stringing up my Christmas lights, I know to thank the Golden State:)
GMOs terrify me. I don’t buy anything with GMOs when I shop. However, there is just no way to avoid them and still be a sane person when eating out. So I try not to think about what the effects of that might be. GMOs are likely bad for people, and they are most definitely bad for the environment (they use more water, and in the long-term cause greater use of pesticides). And they are more expensive for small farmers (both from cost of seed-buying each year and from need for more pesticides a few years in). So the idea that they are somehow necessary for feeding the world is complete BS, and actually exactly the opposite of the truth.
It’s unbelievable to me when people just spout the Monsanto propaganda. When I hear “we need it to feed the world” and “we need it for fewer pesticides” I understand they haven’t done an ounce of their own research. When is even scarier is that some people still don’t even know what GMOs are!
I think there is popular tide turning, and I sure hope they do go away, but then I see things like Monsanto is working on GMO trees for the paper industry, and I get even more worried. Do some research on that if you really want to get scared about implications. Sigh. I try to do my part to effect change and then just have to not stress, because we all know that is worse for health than anything.
Yep, and then there’s the GMO afalfa that was approved. If I want to eat organic beef, how am I supposed to know if it’s accidentally eaten GMO alfalfa? It’s best just to eat local meat from now on, whenever we can afford it. Some of our local cows graze out in the desert and that’s cool.
Does anyone know what is going on with the labeling issue? Someone told me the FDA passed a labeling law of some kind, but I’m finding conflicting reports.
I think only individual states are voting on those issues right now.
What I heard was that non-GMO foods would be able to get a voluntary label stating they are GMO free, if they are found to be free of GMO’s by USDA standards, based off the guidelines of the existing Non-GMO project. Basically like the organic program.
That’s interesting, I hadn’t heard that before.
Companies label their products GMO-free if they are, it’s definitely a good selling point to those who want to avoid GMOs. I’ve never thought about the methodology they use (they probably state that they are GMO-free if their farmers and food producers claim to be GMO-free) and if the USDA’s testing might be more accurate.
I think the only thing I have heard recently is that Oregon (I believe) banned growing of GMOs? I’m not even positive on that one.
Not sure about Oregon, but I did read that San Juan county (San Juan islands) banned GMOs altogether.
I have a cousin who used to work for Monsanto, he wasn’t evil lol. (worked on cucumbers) But I definitely try to avoid them as much as I can. I have no faith in our government in this issue, the lobbyists have more say than constituents. It’s all quite depressing.
I love GMOS more for me!
I try to avoid gmos when theres a doable alternative.
Ugh, I have a huge problem with GMOs.
Of course the number one is that they haven’t had enough testing and we have no idea if they are safe. Next, they can completely take over and contaminate other crops, not to mention the destruction they are doing to farmers in terms of buying seeds, extensive pesticide/herbicide use, etc.
Though I totally agree with your opinion that we shouldn’t be telling those who are orthorexic to be avoiding more foods, it makes me extremely sad that the quality of our food supply is so poor that people can’t choose whatever they want and know that it is decently safe. The same applies for people having to add stress to their life over eating healthy food. It should be available and affordable (though, affordable doesn’t mean cheaper, because having been involved in food production it is worth every penny for god quality local organic stuff, but people need to not have to stress about providing themselves and their families decent food).
I eat organically, both for environmental reasons and health reasons, though I don’t think industrial organic food is going to be much better on either account. I don’t worry about it when I eat out, but I do go to farm to table type places and not McDs or Denny’s or some crap like that. I suppose since I am very concerned with hormonal health and environmental stuff that is part of the reason I am so very against conventional food production.
This about sums up the autism community: “already paralyzed with worry about phytic acid, nightshades, gluten, casein, PUFA, goitrogens, oxalates, fructose, meal frequency, insulin, and 48 other things?”
After three years of being GFCF to help my son…we are slowly kicking the diet to the curb and enjoying our ice cream again. The irony…he’s doing better than before.
And Matt, thanks to you…I’m in the hot chicks club. Above 98.6 most days. I’m still too scared to eat gluten, but everything else is back in my diet with abandon. Metabolically speaking, I’ve never felt better.
Living in Australia GMO’s aren’t the issue that you guys have in America but there is no way on this gods earth I will eat anything GMO (fortunately we have great labeling laws too)
I can’t remember the names of the studies but they are out there, in 3 generatiosn mice fed GMO food were sterile and their health issues including diabetes and cancer were over the moon
In India where GMO crops were supposed to be the saving of famine suffering areas, GMO crops and their related pesticides denuded the ground so much that again with in three generations almost nothing would grow where these crops were planted, Shown against organic practices which showed the best soil health and “normal” pesticide use which showed some soil depletion the Indian farmers refuse to use the GMO seed and pesticide
As an aside the best pesticide that they seem to be using over there is a good ol can of coke
So what happens to us after three generations being fed GMO????
I think you already answered that question in your post. Health problems, fertility issues and ruined soil, most likely.
And after millions of lives are ruined and its painfully obvious that something is truly wrong, then they will change the laws.
I was reconsidering posting this but it just reminded me of what I read somewhere about Bill Gates being in favor of population control. He and Melissa are vaccine happy and also invested in GMO research. I find him just as scary as Monsanto because no one seems to be monitoring his spending and administering things overseas and he can do a lot of harm for a long time. It’s not charity but greed and power on his part. And what about ADM? They are responsible for a lot of the food being shipped to one place or another. We’ve wiped out a lot of native species of corn in Mexico already, just so we can ship this crappy corn to all corners of the world!
I reckon that sometimes the fear of something can be more destructive than the thing itself. I think GMOs suck (truly), but I also think that making them a point of stress and anxiety is probably more harmful than just doing the best you can to avoid them in your own cooking and not worrying if they make their way into your diet on occasion.
There is so much toxic things in todays modern society, you can’t avoid them. There are pesticides in cotton so you get in contact with toxic stuff when you where clothes and in bed, when you go outside you breathe in pollutions and second hand smoke, chemicals and more.
Racheal, we are the guinea pigs. After 3 generations we will find out. But I am afraid it will be too late to do anything about it. I think Monsanto opened Pandora’s box and it is too late to put that evil back.
Thanks for the RUSH reference :)
P.S. I Love You Man – No, I’m not a homo – I was referencing the movie starring Paul Rudd and Jason Segal HA!
Hello. I am Joni’s (soon not to be Cox) Dad. Joni’s fight against GMOs, against Monsanto and against corporate greed is indeed a good fight. Readers should note the high price that anyone must pay for standing up for personal rights and freedom from total manipulation and control by corporations or in some cases soon to be former spouses. None the less, be reminded that what is being done by big wall street, big medicine, and big pharma is and always will be never ending due to greed. Corporations are not people (much to the contrary with regard to the SCOTUS decisions that have ruined our political system) but they will continue to try to convince all of us that what they do is good and does not harm. Corporations may be declared to be people, but they have no humanity! They will continue to pursue total control of our food and our water. What is most disturbing is that the food they control and offer us is crap and the water they control is contaminated with carcinogens although we are told it is safe to drink. Now, FRACing by the oil and gas industry is ruining our land, stealing it, making us sick and it appears that it cannot be stopped since they have the laws on their side. Wow, these assault tactics, fashioned as good business using military PSYOPS tactics will soon have us all bamboozled again. All of us, who care about our food and water need to fight to the bitter end. Take note of what crusaders like Joni, Matt Stone and many others are doing and join in. To do nothing is to give corporations your consent. Thanks for reading my rant. John
I love that you are so supportive of your daughter and what she stands for! I agree with you. There are some things that are just plain wrong no matter how you look at them! It’s those brave people that say “enough!” that make changes in the world. I get tired of the trend towards relativism in everything these days and it’s okay to say one thing is wrong and another is right.
Awesome post Matt! I think the key point is that things are contextual, not black and white. The context should be mentioned more in the health world, and even on this blog. When I read a post about eating strawberry shortcake, breakfast cereal, etc. it would be nice if a bit more context is included. If someone has already been paleo, wapf, vegan, or whatever for some time, telling them to chill out and eat the food is great. But if someone is just beginning to learn more about living a healthy lifestyle, they may get confused reading 180 degree health. I guess learning about health is confusing in general, but it can be made less-so with more complete explanations. Eating strawberry shortcake is not a bad idea for ____ because _____. Eating cereal is ______ but certain cereals are not ideal for some people because ______.
On another note, your upcoming book looks sweeeeet
This is how the game is played in Europe. Next up for voting by the Commission is SmartStax corn by Monsanto and Dow. The Commission is pro-GMO.
Thank you for posting this! I have been curious about your stance on this subject–especially with all the processed food eating you seemed to do in the last year:) I have had to force myself to relax a bit because all of the stressing I was doing about food was driving me and my family crazy and adding inches to my waist. We still avoid GMOs, petrochemically based food additives and pesticides around here most of the time, but it feels good to enjoy sugary treats without being afraid and I even feel better. And, when I want that Oreo Dirt Pie, I eat it–BHT, trans fats and all.
I don’t know whether the alternative health community is correct about GMO food and it seems to me to be a very general statement.
We live longer and enjoy a greater quality of life because of technology and there are standards and protocols in place to prevent the unintended consequences.
What I do question is the inflexible attitude toward gmo at the expense of millions of starving people around the world. How lucky for us that we have the luxury to think about things with a full belly, perhaps we could have a bit of compassion for don’t?
The starving people of the world have successfully kept GMO crops out intentionally. In the U.S., people tend to remain much more oblivious because media puppet mastery was invented and perfected here.
Matt, the future of plant modification lies not in genetic manipulation but in epigenetic manipulation.
Genetic modification is a known dead end to plant researchers. Epigenetic manipulation however holds significant promise for creating resistant plants using their natural defenses.
It is really only a matter of time before GMOs are gone. But mostly because they are inferior technology.
GMOs will not be banned anytime soon. Monsanto IS the government. Obama has appointed many people with direct ties to Monsanto and Syngenta and Monsanto has paid employees run for offices…
I think anyone with even the most basic critical thinking skills realizes that the U.S. government is “sponsored.” And voting only allows you to choose between Coke or Pepsi – thus meaning that democracy only appears to exist here, but not really. That doesn’t mean that people are powerless to do anything about it though. In other countries they just murder their elected officials until elected officials fear the citizens enough to start doing what they want them to do. It’s quite a simple process, it just requires the proper motivation. Unfortunately life in the U.S. is comfortable enough most people don’t feel the need to really take any strong actions. Marching in a street is not a strong action. Blogging and interviewing Ron Paul are not strong actions either.
Article above on the change in umbilical cords after GMOs were introduced in Bali.
You might find this article interesting:
20 minute video really worth watching
sorry, more like a 13 minute video. Talks about how GM crops can alter our own dna/rna and the information the body reads from the food. Basically by eating this fucking shit, we are becoming genetically modified humans!