Humans are now exposed to more information, education, and knowledge as a result of the advancement of science and technology, which has led to the development of Genetically Modified Organic foods (GMOs). Several studies have cast doubt on the health benefits of eating GMO foods. According to Wells, the advancement of GMO foods has completely ruined the quality of life and health standards (21). People no longer pay attention to organic diets, according to Wells (22). GMO foods are unhealthy for the body, as they cause a variety of diseases. The chemical components and ingredients found in GMO foods have a significant negative impact on the human body. Despite the negative impacts of GMOs, some studies have refuted the argument that GMOs are harmful. For instance, Paarlberg citing that GMO foods are beneficial to the economy as they are resistance to disease and lead to mass productions (613). The debates centering on the impacts of GMOs on heath and the environment are controversial. Individuals have to consume the organic foods to help in a healthy body development. This paper will discuss the reasons why people have to consume the organic foods and not the GMOs food products.
Importance of Organic Food Consumption
Organic foods are safe and healthy to the body as oppose to the GMO foods. Eating organically comes with many health benefits to the body. Organic foods have natural origins making them reasonable to maintaining the health of the body. According to Vaughan and Judd, the organic foods contain 95% natural ingredients which are nutrients that come from animals and plants (23). Organic foods are grown without chemicals which are the primary components used in the growth of the GMO foods. Vaughan and Judd indicate that organic foods contain more than 73% iron, 63% calcium, 125% potassium and 60% zinc compared to the GMO foods (28). These natural components are significant to the health and proper development of the body.
The organic foods are key components in the protection of the body against illnesses along with other abnormalities. The natural nutrient component that is found in the organic foods is fundamental to various mechanisms of the body which are not found in the artificial chemical nutrients found in the GMOs. Wells notes that some of the artificial components in GMOs, when consumed, are not fully broken down and thus cause side-effects that lead to a long-term impact on the body (17). These artificial constituents are primarily composed of the metallic chemicals that pose greater health concerns along with risks of obesity health case in a person. The farming of the GMO crops leads to modification of the hormones which makes them to rapidly grow to maturity. Thus, as Wells documents, GMOs contain excess calories which when consumed add to the weight management problems leading to obesity (29). Additionally, in the GMO beef production, the animals are administered with artificial hormones like melengestrol, trenbolone, and zeranol all of which are synthetic posing heath issues when consumed. Notably, these artificial hormones lead to hormonal imbalances in the body. Eventually, a person could experience body developmental problems and interferences with the reproductive system. According to Vaughan and Judd, the worst cases of cancer that are reported such as prostate, colon, and breast cancers have their roots linked to GMO food consumption (38). Undoubtedly, the consumption of the organic foods is highly recommended for protection of the body against diseases.
Organic foods also have better tastes compared to the GMOs. This owes to the fact that the organic foods are naturally free from chemical companies like fungicides, pesticides, preservatives and chemical fertilizers that affect the taste of the food. These foods are grown on soils that are healthy and rich in complex molecules that provide better flavor to the food (Vaughan and Judd 21). The artificial hormones in the GMOs interfere with the taste and thus the organic foods become attractive for consumption due to the natural taste. Laboratory scientific studies directed at finding out the effects of the GMO foods to the body have also documented the adverse of consuming GMO. Wells carried out a laboratory study that involved feeding mammals on the GOM foods. In his findings, he reported that the mammals suffered adverse effects including damaging to the adrenal glands, liver, kidneys, heart, and spleen (27). The research concluded that eating of the GMO foods adversely affected the body risking the occurrence of death.
The GMO food consumption comes with severe health risks including modification of the genetic makeup along with risks of toxic substances. Vaughan and Judd indicate that the GMOs contain 25% toxic substances that have detrimental impacts on the body (40). These toxic substances emanate from the chemicals and pesticides used in growing the crops. Scientists report that the GMOs foods cause body allergies. The pesticides and toxic substances result into digestive health problems. Wells asserts that Glyphosate, a primary component of the herbicides used in the GMO farming negatively impacts on the gut bacteria of the body (45). Vaughan and Judd highlight that besides the allergic reactions and risks of cancer, other health concerns related to GMOs include cases of autism, reproductive issues, and heart diseases (42). Owing to all the damaging health impacts of GMO food consumption, someone is left with no choice other than eating organically if one aims at keeping the health of his body in check.
Despite the detrimental consequences that result from the consumption of the GMO foods, proponents of GMO food consumption have refuted the fact that GMOs are harmful to the body citing that these foods are more beneficial in wide spheres of life (Paarlberg 610). According to Paarlberg, GMO foods have increased nutritional benefits, have better tastes and are resistance to pests and diseases compared to the organic crops (609). He further asserts that GMO farming yields massive food production as oppose to the other types of crop farming. Thus, the high yield advantageous aspect of GMO makes nations to have food security eliminating cases of hunger that could cause starvation and death. According to Paarlberg “Genetically modified animals have certain genes inserted into their genomes so that they can produce better milk, eggs, and meat” (609). With the ever increasing global population, high cases of hunger and starvation particularly evident in the third world countries, nations are left with no option but to adapt the consumption of the GMO foods. According to Paarlberg, these features make the GMO foods to create a sustainable and stronger way of feeding the world (611).
Eating organically also benefits the environment in many ways including avoiding cases of pollution. The organic foods are well known to not have any negative effects on the environment as opposed to the GMO crops. The herbicides and pesticides used in the growing of the GMO foods create massive havoc to the environment risking the lives of people and other living things. These chemical products cause pollution of soil, water, and air. Vaughan and Judd report that glyphosate which is an herbicide in GMO farming causes the destruction of the soil weakening it quality along with imparting the plants’ nutritional values (41). The planting of the GMO crops also results in cross-pollution of the GMO and the non-GMO crops which cause to the destruction of the natural crops. Vaughan and Judd also found out that GMO farming causes a growing epidemic of “superweeds”. According to Vaughan and Judd, many weeds in the farms have evolved developing resistance to the natural fertilizers due to a chemical component of glyphosate used in GMO (51). Besides, these crops highly contribute to the cause of global warming. Notably, the GMO crops use the synthetic nitrogen fertilizers that result into about 6% of the entire nitrous oxide emissions causing the greenhouse effect. Therefore, consumption of the organic foods will ensure that the weakening of the environment is contained.
Certainly, the consumption of the organic foods is beneficial to the human health compared to the GMOs food eating. The organic foods are significant in the protection of the body against illnesses, have a natural taste and help in a healthy development of the entire body system. These beneficial are in contrary to the consumption of GMOs which typically cause cases of cancer, hormonal imbalances along with many health concerns such as diabetes and heart diseases. Besides they cause massive environmental pollution. Undisputedly, people have to embrace the organic food consumption to realize the massive health benefits to the body.
Paarlberg, Robert. “GMO Foods and Crops: Africa’s Choice”. New Biotechnology, 27.5, (2010), pp. 609-613. Elsevier BV, doi:10.1016/j.nbt.2010.07.005.
Vaughan, J. G, & Judd, Patricia A. The Oxford Book of Health Foods. 1st ed., Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2003.
Wells, Dilys. “Organic Foods”. Nutrition & Food Science, 32.3, (2002), Emerald, doi:10.1108/nfs.2002.01732cab.002.