There has been a debate raging about whether organic produce is better for you or not. If you will Google this discussion you will find many mainstream sources trying to convince you that organic produce is not any healthier for you than conventional.
The reality is that big corporations who make chemical pesticides, fertilizers, and genetically modified seeds spend millions of dollars every year to not only lobby Congress, the EPA, and FDA, but also to wage an information war where “reputable” sources extol all the great virtues of conventional food while bashing organic food.
You need to cut through all this garbage and see the truth. You know ingesting these chemicals is not safe or natural and mankind has been better off for thousands of years before all the modern day problems of chronic illness like cancer and pollution came into existence. (I am not referring to contagious disease epidemics like typhoid fever and cholera. Those who often try to say there were more disease problems in the past never focus on the main causes which were lack of plumbing and sanitation, but that is for another article.)
The United States uses about 1.1 billion pounds of pesticide a year. Most conventional crops are sprayed with an abundance of pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides. The most commonly used type of pesticides are organophosphates. Organophosphates, even occurring in low levels in food, have been linked to delayed brain development in children, Parkinson’s Disease, and lymphoma(cancer) among other detrimental health effects.
Glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto’s herbicide RoundUp, is very harmful and linked to birth defects, miscarriages, cancer, and disrupting the endocrine system(hormones).
Pesticides have also been shown to be linked to bee colony failure which has a wide range of negative impacts on our planet.
The fertilizer industry pulls in $172 BILLION a year worldwide. This means there are efforts made to keep you from knowing the dangerous effects artificial fertilizer has on your health and the environment just like other poisonous and profitable industries. Because of corruption and loopholes in laws created to protect pollution-producing industries, sewage treatment agencies, waste management companies, and the $60 billion-a-year fertilizer industry; these industries are protected from federal hazardous waste disposal laws.
“What this means is that any material containing elements beneficial to plant growth, such as nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, chromium, manganese, copper, calcium, boron or sulfur, can be labeled and used as a fertilizer, regardless of its other contents. Industrial and mining wastes — including plutonium, arsenic, mercury, cadmium, lead, PCBs and dioxin — are taken from tailings, sumps, holding ponds, furnaces, and even captured from pollution control devices, and legally sold to fertilizer companies or spread directly on farmland. Sewage sludge, which may contain dangerous levels of pathogens, as well as PCBs, chlorinated pesticides, asbestos, industrial solvents, petroleum products, radioactive material and heavy metals, can also be sold to home gardeners and farmers as fertilizer, and spread on public lands such as golf courses, parks and playgrounds.” quote from here
Because of this situation, these industries can save and even MAKE money selling their hazardous waste as fertilizer.
Most people think that synthetic fertilizers help poor quality soil by adding nutrients to them. However, synthetic fertilizers only replace nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus while at the same time depleting the other nutrients and minerals that are normally found in healthy soils. This nutrient deficient soil creates nutritionally depleted food.
Synthetic fertilizers also kill microorganisms that exist in the soil which are beneficial to crops. These bacteria would normally break down organic matter into plant nutrients, and help convert nitrogen from the air into a plant-usable form. This contributes to further nutritionally depleted food.
The destruction of the good bacteria also affects the structure of the soil. The soil loses its essential ability to retain water, air, and nutrients. Plants grown in such depleted soil are extremely susceptible to damage from diseases, insects, and drought.
Vitamin C content decreases in crops as the use of synthetic nitrogen fertilizers increase.
You can clearly taste the difference between organic and conventional produce and the difference comes from the nutrient depleted soil which conventional crops are grown in.
Finally, we must talk about the disease fertilizer causes in humans and not just fertilizer used on farms, but even fertilizer you put on your yard. Children who live in homes that use pesticides and/or synthetic fertilizers on their lawn have over six times a greater rate of leukemia. People that work at golf courses have been shown to have higher rates of brain, intestinal, and prostate cancer; usually over twice the rate as the general population. People that live within 2600 feet of an agricultural area have increased risk of brain cancer. An astounding 6.7 fold increased risk was found for the brain cancer type known as astrocytoma for people living within 2600 feet from an agriculture area!
GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms)
The first question is: what percentage of crops are GMO?
– 88% of corn is GMO – this is used in tons of processed foods, high fructose corn syrup, and 36% is fed to livestock which you eat (about 40% is used for ethanol)
– 93% of soy is GMO – this is used for hydrogenated oils, (soy)lecithin, emulsifiers, tocopherol (a vitamin E supplement) and proteins which you find in processed foods
– 94% of cottonseed is GMO – Cottonseeds are culled from cotton, and then used for vegetable oil, margarine or shortening production, or frying foods, such as potato chips.
– 90% of canola is GMO – this is used mostly to make canola oil which can be found in many products as a hydrogenated oil processed with hexane
– 90% of sugar beets are GMO – 54% of sugar in the U.S. comes from sugar beets
What are GMOs?
GMOs are plants or animals created through the gene splicing techniques of biotechnology (also called genetic engineering). The process involves taking the DNA of one species of plant or animal and forcing it into the DNA of another species. This is known as transgenesis and therefore the technically correct name for GMOs is transgenic organisms. Laughably GMO proponents will try to say this process is no different from natural breeding that has been going on for thousands of years. What’s hilarious about this is the fact that companies like Monsanto have to prove that their process of creating their seeds is significantly different from natural breeding in order to get a patent on their seeds!
The reason biotech companies use transgenesis is to create a species of plant(or animal) that has a desired trait which was not there before. For instance, GMO RoundUp Ready Soybeans were genetically engineered to be resistant to the chemical herbicide: glyphosate. Glyphosate is the chemical mentioned earlier in this article with harmful health effects(this herbicide was created by Monsanto, the corporation that gave us such wonderful poisonous chemicals as DDT and Agent Orange) Glyphosate is so “safe” that a lobbyist from Monsanto said you could drink a quart of it and be fine, yet when offered some to drink he declined saying, “I’m not an idiot.” watch here
All the weeds are killed by glyphosate while the GMO soybeans are left intact. The problem is that the GMO plants absorb the herbicide from the soil causing dangerous health effects when consumed. Some GMO plants are actually engineered to produce an insecticide of their own so that when a pest tries to eat the plant it dies. Seems legit and totally safe to eat…
Another problem with this is that bugs are actually developing resistance to these GMO plants, so farmers are having to turn to more pesticides.
A farmer has to pay royalties in order to grow genetically modified corn, as the technique is regarded as an intellectual property. Yes, you got that right: CORPORATIONS HAVE PATENTED SEEDS. If farmers save the GMO seeds for next year and replant them, they will be sued. Even if GMO seeds blow in the farmer’s non-GMO field and Monsanto’s seed police discover it, the farmer will be facing a lawsuit!
Who can you trust?
Since it is extremely difficult for independent researchers to study GMO seeds due to the fact that they need permission from the corporations that manufacture them; research proving the dangers of GMO’s is very controversial and difficult. Corporations like Monsanto spend millions of dollars every year to have lobbyists in Washington D.C. influence legislators and regulatory agencies like the FDA and EPA. In addition to this, members of the FDA have formerly worked for Monsanto causing further conflict of interest.
Then you have internet shills, who write articles defending GMO’s and attack supporters of organic food, who in many instances also turn out to have ties to the biotech industry. There are also many studies that have come out that are completely biased and purposely misleading which are funded by these biotech giants. You will find supposedly “independent” scientists and researchers have received compensation, usually indirectly, from these GMO companies.This massive disinformation campaign makes it difficult for many to know who to trust. Considering the conflicts of interest and lack of transparency from these biotech corporations previously mentioned, you should be extremely skeptical of any research claiming to prove the safety of GMO’s.
If you want to see a lot of these GMO myths(i.e. “GM foods are strictly tested and regulated for safety”) debunked and destroyed, read this book “GMO Myths and Truths” which you can read online put together by independent scientists and researchers.
So what are the health dangers of GMOs?
Biotech companies say that modified genes don’t survive in the body due to being broken up in the intestinal tract, yet a Norwegian study proved that genes can pass through the intestinal wall into the blood.
Bt corn is engineered to produce it’s own insecticide as it grows which kills insects that try to eat it. So we are supposed to believe corn that will kill bugs poses no threat to humans who consume it??
Studies have revealed various negative health affects from eating GMO foods. GMO corn was linked to hormonal disruption, infertility, disruption of the intestinal immune system, cancerous tumors, liver congestion, and kidney deficiencies. Monsanto did a 90 day study on rats that determined GM food was safe(Wow, what a surprise…), but the French Seralini study which was conducted over 2 years revealed that tumors didn’t start to develop until after 4-7 months into the study. This shows that low level environmental toxins take longer to have an impact than the length of studies being conducted by GMO supporters.
(The Seralini study was later retracted by the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology after they received worldwide pressure to do so. This does NOT mean the study was wrong at all. There were a number of factors that caused them to retract the study, one of which is conflict of interest. Read this article which gives a great explanation as to why the study was unjustifiably retracted and also the reasons all other studies showing the health dangers of GMOs are attacked. Furthermore, Seralini’s team subsequently won more than one case for defamation and forgery against them by pro-GMO attack dogs. You can read the details here and here. Lastly, Here is a 10 point article which refutes common attacks against the Seralini study. If you need a video, here’s that too.)
This explains a contributing factor to the brutal reality of this statistic: Americans have the highest rate of cancer of any other country on the planet — 1 out of 2 men, and 1 out of 3 women are expected to get cancer in their lifetime.
GMO crops are not safe to eat and you should cut them out of your diet as soon as possible.
I hope you see there is a big difference between organic and conventional produce now.