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How to Win a GMO Debate: 10 Facts Why GM Food is Bad

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How to Win a GMO Debate: 10 Facts Why GM Food is Bad

It’s happened to the best of us. The topic of genetically modified (GM) food and crops comes up and someone somewhere starts spewing a spate of pro-GMO rhetoric like, “GM food is the only way to feed the poor! GM crops benefit farmers! GM food and crops are safe!” and we are left with a stammering retort of, “but, but, no, but, uhm, no!”

Next time be prepared by bolstering your argument with these 10 Reasons to Avoid GMOs, courtesy of international bestselling author and GMO expert Jeffrey Smith from The Institute for Responsible Technology (IRT). This list of ten facts and supporting text clearly explain just how serious a threat GM food and crops pose to our personal health as well as the health of the planet.

1. GMOs are unhealthy.
The American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM) urges doctors to prescribe non-GMO diets for all patients. They cite animal studies showing organ damage, gastrointestinal and immune system disorders, accelerated aging, and infertility. Human studies show how genetically modified (GM) food can leave material behind inside us, possibly causing long-term problems. Genes inserted into GM soy, for example, can transfer into the DNA of bacteria living inside us, and that the toxic insecticide produced by GM corn was found in the blood of pregnant women and their unborn fetuses.

Numerous health problems increased after GMOs were introduced in 1996. The percentage of Americans with three or more chronic illnesses jumped from 7% to 13% in just 9 years; food allergies skyrocketed, and disorders such as autism, reproductive disorders, digestive problems, and others are on the rise. Although there is not sufficient research to confirm that GMOs are a contributing factor, doctors groups such as the AAEM tell us not to wait before we start protecting ourselves, and especially our children who are most at risk.

The American Public Health Association and American Nurses Association are among many medical groups that condemn the use of GM bovine growth hormone, because the milk from treated cows has more of the hormone IGF-1 (insulin-like growth factor 1)―which is linked to cancer.

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Read more: Diet & Nutrition, Eating for Health, Environment, Lawns & Gardens, Nature, Nature & Wildlife

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Melissa Breyer

Melissa Breyer is a writer and editor with a background in sustainable living, specializing in food, science and design. She is the co-author of True Food (National Geographic) and has edited and written for regional and international books and periodicals, including The New York Times Magazine. Melissa lives in Brooklyn, NY.

172 comments

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8:48AM PDT on Jul 16, 2014

http://www.popsci.com/article/science/core-truths-10-common-gmo-claims-debunked

11:10PM PDT on Jul 14, 2014

I didn't even bother reading the rest of the article after the first point.

IGF-1 is not a hormone, it is a peptide. The only link it has to cancer is that it has the ability to grow tumors that are already present, however there have been no studies that have recorded the enlargement of a cancerous tumor, only the growth of naturally occuring tumors in mice.

I would also like to point out that it doesn't mix well with your stomach acid and will be destroyed before it reaches you blood stream.

You cannot make the claim that GMO's are unhealthy, then say there is no studies to support a link between the data used in your argument.

12:58PM PDT on Jul 14, 2014

The title of this piece is a little messed up... Focusing more on winning an argument about GMO's rather than getting the real unbiased truth out there.

5:12AM PDT on Jul 14, 2014

End of list, intact:
American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM)
Doctors prescribe non-GMO diets: http://www.aaemonline.org/gmopost.html

5:08AM PDT on Jul 14, 2014

continued:
Glyphosate-Based Herbicides Produce Teratogenic Effects on Vertebrates by Impairing Retinoic Acid Signaling -- http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/tx1001749

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2809416/ - Genetic Chromosome Damage

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19539684 - Endocrine Disruptors

Glyphosate induces human breast cancer cells growth via estrogen receptors.
Food Chem Toxicol. 2013 Jun 8. Epub 2013 Jun 8. PMID: 23756170

Moms Across America has some of the above and some I haven't listed in this article:
http://www.momsacrossamerica.com/glyphosate_testing_results - Problems named include birth
defects, residue in mothers' milk, umbilical cord blood serum, drinking water, aerial spray
effects, soil bacteria, gut bacteria, etc. There is hardly anything that isn't adversely affected
in one way or another!

http://www.ucsusa.org/food_and_agriculture/our-failing-food-system/industrial-agriculture/the-rise-of-superweeds.html

http://foodintegritynow.org/2014/05/08/dr-thierry-vrain-former-gmo-scientist-speaks/

http://www.minds.com/blog/view/268122436501770240/confirmed-dna-from-genetically-modified-crops-can-be-transferred-into-humans-who-eat-them

http://www.collective-evolution.com/2013/11/25/geneticist-david-suzuki-says-humans-are-part-of-a-massive-genetic-experiment/


http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2809416/ Genetic Chromosome Damage

American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM)
Doctors presc

5:07AM PDT on Jul 14, 2014

@Adam A.- Seralini reproduced what Monsanto had done for 90 days only, but his ran for 2 yrs, the length of that specie's lifespan. The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) commissioned a panel to investigate all the media hype about the study's veracity which validated the study, then EFSA
mandated that all future 2-yr studies be conducted using the same protocol Seralini used. I have all the links for the above. Surely it can be reproduced after that much ado back and forth to get it all sorted out.

The Popular Science article you cited is, to me, a re-write of industry propaganda, the likes of which corporate money was spent broadcasting it prior to Prop 37 in California and I 522 in Washington. At least Washington has an energetic Atty General who has sued Grocery Manufacturers Assn for setting up a front company for the purpose of money laundering and failing to file full accounts before voting day.
I should mention here that South Africa has sued Monsanto for false advertising and there have been other similar actions around the world. I'm listing below the most conclusive information that covers a range of issues. I can do the same with each of the 10 points in the Popular Science article.

I hope no one comes back with a response that "this is GMO and that is Roundup/glyphosate" or some such because they are inseparable. Where a plant takes up the herbicide from the soil as well as through the foliage, it's inside the fruit/produce and can't be washed off.

2:52AM PDT on Jul 14, 2014

Following "FoodBabe's" article about GMO ingredients in 2 brands of beer, I submitted a comment that was challenged by an obvious troll, implying that I couldn't produce a single peer-reviewed study confirming that doctors are advising patients to switch to non-GMO diets. I see some commenters here expect to have info handed to them so here's what I posted in response --

Tip of the iceberg:

From an article by Dr David Suzuki:
http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0069805

American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM)
Doctors prescribe non-GMO diets: http://www.aaemonline.org/gmopost.html
http://www.iowasource.com/food/2010_05_gmo.html - Same study, read comments

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2809416/
Genetic Chromosome Damage

http://themanterialist.com/2014/04/13/the-mastery-of-the-self-part-one-body-diet/

http://relfe.com/2010/pigs_animals_won%27t_eat_gmo_corn_food.html

http://truthaboutpetfood.com/more-reasons-to-say-no-to-gmo - No citations

6:22PM PDT on Jul 12, 2014

I knew they were bad but not to what extent. It's not surprising, although everyone knowing the facts must surely be screaming, "stop creating them!" Why are they doing this? I thank the stars every day I live in a country where everything is correctly labelled and there are very few gmo's. Judging by some of the comments here, some people believe exactly what Monsanto et al want them to. There are none so blind as those who cannot see. Thank you for the informative article, Melissa.

5:36PM PDT on Jul 12, 2014

This article was simply terrible. I wanted to learn what cogent, well-informed arguments might be made against GMO foods, and I was open to any evidence that might be offered. Instead, I found a list of unsupported, poorly stated complaints against GMOs based on nothing but the author's fear of technology. There was not a single citation, nor any specifics as to what is supposed to be dangerous, or why. If these are the best "facts" you can produce to "win a GMO debate" then you really, really deserve to lose that debate.

5:36PM PDT on Jul 12, 2014

This article was simply terrible. I wanted to learn what cogent, well-informed arguments might be made against GMO foods, and I was open to any evidence that might be offered. Instead, I found a list of unsupported, poorly stated complaints against GMOs based on nothing but the author's fear of technology. There was not a single citation, nor any specifics as to what is supposed to be dangerous, or why. If these are the best "facts" you can produce to "win a GMO debate" then you really, really deserve to lose that debate.

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