A quite interesting to read post by Dr. Joel Kahn via Expanded Consciousness · July 1, 2014

It’s along the “precautionary principle”, however with some really good facts that are hard to beat.
In that regard, you may well be interested in the NZ adoption of the precautionary principle (or lack thereof):

Treasury: Application of the precautionary principle in New Zealand.

Here’s the article by Dr. Joel Kahn:


 

I was asked this week to speak about the effects of genetically modified foods on the cardiovascular system for a group of health care providers and the public. Was I shocked to learn that eating GMO foods can increase the rate of heart attacks, strokes, and bypass surgeries in multiple medical studies in humans?

No … because these studies don’t exist.

In fact, I couldn’t present a clear scientific argument linking GMO foods with the development of heart disorders. I’m not an alarmist and I believe in the scientific process. However, on a personal level, I’ve instituted tighter rules in my home about food purchases. The more I learned about GMOs, the more I decided to just say no.

As it says in the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, “Avert the danger that has not yet come.” Here’s what I learned about GMO foods that moved me to this decision:

1. GMO foods have less nutrition.

Just this year, we learned that there is a striking difference in the nutritional content of corn produced with GMO compared to corn produced without GMO. Foods grown with GMO can have half as much sulfur and potassium and significantly less magnesium than non-GMO versions. (Why? Because the inserted genetic material is only on, not off at times, the demand for cell energy may rise and deplete the cells of nutrients.)

As a cardiologist, I know how essential nutrients such as potassium and magnesium are in controlling blood pressure and arterial health. Sulfur is important in the production of glutathione, the major cellular antioxidant counteracting the stress of using oxygen for energy production. What does it mean to my family to feed them nutritionally deficient vegetables and food items? Again, I am concerned.

2. Rats who were fed GMO diets died sooner than rats who were GMO free.

In the first-ever GMO feeding study, European researchers fed rats either chow made with 11% GMO products or GMO-free chow for two years. By the 17th month of life, rats fed the GMO chow were 5 to 6 times more likely to have died. Of those rats who’d been fed GMO feed, the females grew giant tumors in their reproductive organs, while the males grew tumors in the liver. Liver and kidney abnormalities were seen frequently in the GMO fed rats. I know we do not have human data, but I’m concerned what this data could mean for my wife and children.

3. GMO foods contain viruses that we don’t yet fully understand.

In order to create GMO foods, new genetic material is inserted into the cell nucleus, often with a virus that “turns on” the new genetic material. One problem is that there is no material that can turn it off and these cells will be working to replicate themselves non-stop. We all have a variety of “natural” viruses in our body and the concern is whether or not the altered viruses inserted into GMO food could infect viruses already inside us and cause them to grow abnormally. Sounds like a science fiction movie.

Another component of the new material is another gene that makes the GMO plant cells resistant to an antibiotic. This process is used in over half of the methods of creating foods that contain GMO, and I am alarmed about the possible impact of new viruses on the health of my family. I am concerned whether new diseases from these “super” viruses never before seen in our body could result in new diseases and cancer.

4. Mice who were fed GMO foods developed damaged red blood cells.

Brazil is the second largest producer of crops modified with GMO. In March of this year, Brazilian researchers studied the effects of Bt, a microbial control agent used widely on plants with GMO that resist Bt. Among the mice fed the GMO-laced chow, the scientists observed hematoxicity, (blood cell damage), with significant injury particularly to red blood cells. (It’s possible, but not yet clear whether or not this could contribute to anemia in animals and humans.) These researchers called for more studies on the effects of GMO altered foods on “non-target” mammals, which would be you and me.

5. Eating GMO foods led to sterility in rats.

In 2006, Russian researchers fed rats chow with added soybeans using GMO or regular chow and looked at fertility. Guess what? Of the rats were fed GMO, fewer reproduced, and those who did had offspring with smaller birth weight. By the third generation Fewer rats were born at a smaller birth weight to the rats fed the altered soybeans and by the third generation of rats the animals were sterile. The effects of food produced with GMO on sex hormones is an area I am concerned about for my family.
What will we do?

What can you do?

There is a Chinese phrase that “Pure water has no fish.” It will be very hard to have a completely GMO-free lifestyle. The checklist in my home to make it into the kitchen is already complex (Is it kosher? Vegan? Nut-free? Gluten-free? Non-GMO?), and we will do our best.

We will read the Environmental Working Group for updates and opt for organic when buying anything from the “Dirty Dozen” produce list. We follow the Non-GMO Project and support movements for mandatory labeling. I have begun to use an app on my smart phone that assists in shopping GMO-free.

The rising awareness and concern over this topic has forced Monsanto and other major producers of GMO produce to hire new marketing consultants. (Turns out, being referred to as “Satan” is not good for their brand.) In my home town, we just had a major maker of tortilla chips announce sourcing of corn and cottonseed oil from non-GMO producers, and other manufacturers will follow suit.

I invite you to get involved in this important area of food safety as we have the power to be heard and improve the acceptability of our food supply.

4 comments

  1. If I were you, I would be ashamed to call myself a doctor. Your first point was a hoax, where soil test information was promoted as being from plant samples. Other parts of it were just pure fabrications and could not be true for any organic (in the chemistry sense) plant materials. The second study you mention was retracted for being inconclusive, when in actuality it should never have been published. Since then, they republished it in another, lower impact journal, with minor editing, and claim that it has passed 3 rounds of peer review. It passed one round of peer review. The second round lead to its retraction, and the third round never occurred, based on comments from the journal editor.

    For your third point, we eat plant viruses every day, and so far none of them have caused humans to be infected with a plant virus. In the case of an infected papaya or cucumber, we consume much more virus than we ever would from eating GE (genetically engineered) crops.

    The fourth point you make refers to a study that does not use Bt, as it occurs in GE plants, to treat mice. It used genetically modified complete Bt spores, such as might be administered in organic (crop production method) agricultural production. If this study shows anything, it would be that current organic use of Bt is dangerous, which flies in the face of numerous studies and long term usage that says use of Bt in organic and conventional agriculture is safe.

    Lastly, point 5 refers to a paper that can only be found on anti-GMO sites. It is in a relatively unknown journal, and this data has not been repeated anywhere else in the world. If GE crops caused sterility after 3 generations, there would be a lot of pork, poultry, and beef producers up in arms.

    You really need to start practicing a little judicious skepticism in the journals you rely on to make your points. Would you be so credulous with the medical journals that you read? Do you change your treatment techniques based on such spurious data? If so I feel sorry for your patients.

  2. If GMO’s are causing sterility in rats, then it must be the fertility wunderkind for Canadian Geese ! As they migrate and feast on the GMO corn leftovers in Canadian and US fields. And, as a doctor, if you are so easily fooled by a study claiming only 2 or 60ppm Carbon in any strain of Corn, GM or not, then all i can say is I’m glad i’m not sick !

  3. Well, be the original report as it is, I cannot find any source or reference to any of the comments made previously.
    As per my own article introduction, I was mentioning the precautionary principle. There are report saying GMO is fine, there are reports saying GMO is not fine.
    Once again, if there is a chance that there is a risk, why taking it? For the sake of Monsanto? There are also reports saying that the GMO yield is actually decreasing and not holding the promise on the package but what it does for sure in benefiting some large companies selling farmers the seeds and the fertiliser that has to go with it…

    Every year America is celebrating independence day, why are you trying so hard to get back into dependence?

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