Americans have been eating genetically modified ingredients in most processed foods, beginning in 1996. The American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM) stated in 2009 that, “Several animal studies indicate serious health risks associated with genetically modified (GM) food.” This includes immune problems, accelerated aging, infertility, faulty insulin regulation, and alterations in the gastrointestinal system and major organs, and the AAEM requested physicians to advise all patients to avoid genetically modified foods. The controversy surrounding genetically modified food is vast. Some continents and countries such as Europe and Japan have even gone as far as rejecting GMO because of the negative effects. We are brought to the various questions of, what exactly is genetically modified food? How does it effect the environment, animals, and most importantly, the health of people?
To begin, genetically modified food is defined as “genetically modified organism: an organism or microorganism whose genetic material has been altered by means of genetic engineering” (1). GMOs generate combinations of animal, bacteria, viral, and plant genes that don’t occur in the usual crossbreeding methods or in nature. Conventional processed food in the United States are approximately 80% GMO, and unlabeled on food products (3). The United States, Brazil, Argentina, India, Canada, China, Paraguay, Pakistan, South Africa, and Uruguay are the top ten counties planting genetically modified crops (2). However, there are significant restrictions on the production and sale of GMOs and over 60 countries have limited or banned GMOs (3).
GMOs are made by foreign genes that are forced into the DNA of genetically mo...
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...for creating this policy was the vice president of the largest biotech company. The reality was that FDA scientists frequently cautioned that GM foods could create obscure, unpredictable effects including nutritional problems, toxins, new diseases, and allergies. The people responsible of deciding if GM foods are safe or not, are the same biotech companies found guilty of concealing toxic effects of their chemical products (5).
Today, facts like the ones stated are easily lost in the hurricane of debates and opinions people have. Each side clamors to inform people about the benefits or harms of genetically modified organisms. Regardless of any benefits that come up, if the peoples’ health is compromised, we have lost sight of the real goal. If the very thing that was meant to help people, is threatening us and the world we live in, then it should be eradicated.
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