Tag Archives: GMOs

Glyphosate in Your Urine, Tap Water & Breast Milk


(Source: blog.wondercide.com)
(Source: blog.wondercide.com)


High glyphosate levels are turning up everywhere:
  • In our blood
  • In urine
  • In water supplies
  • In breast milk
“Glyphosate levels have been found to be significantly higher in the urine of humans who ate non-organic food, compared with those who ate mostly organic food. Chronically ill people showed significantly higher glyphosate residues in their urine than healthy people.” (Robinson, Antoniou & Fagan, 2015)


(Source: www.scoopnest.com)
(Source: www.scoopnest.com)
This post may bring at least part of the discussion of GMO foods from the general to the personal – the effects of glyphosate on your own health.




Glyphosate is the key chemical ingredient in Monsanto’s RoundUp weedkiller, which the genetically modified seeds produced by Monsanto – called “RoundUp Ready” – are engineered to withstand. These “RoundUp Ready” seeds can be doused with glyphosate and survive while the other non-GMO plants around them are killed. (GMO Awareness, 2011)



(Source: hitek.fr)
(Source: hitek.fr)


Glyphosate is the most widely used herbicide in the world.
“Since 1974 in the U.S., over 1.6 billion kilograms of glyphosate active ingredient have been applied, or 19 % of estimated global use of glyphosate (8.6 billion kilograms). Globally, glyphosate use has risen almost 15-fold since so-called “Roundup Ready,” genetically engineered glyphosate-tolerant crops were introduced in 1996. Two-thirds of the total volume of glyphosate applied in the U.S. from 1974 to 2014 has been sprayed in just the last 10 years. The corresponding share globally is 72 %. In 2014, farmers sprayed enough glyphosate to apply ~1.0 kg/ha (0.8 pound/acre) on every hectare of U.S.-cultivated cropland and nearly 0.53 kg/ha (0.47 pounds/acre) on all cropland worldwide.” (Benbrook, 2016)
That’s a huge amount of poison being sprayed on the fruits and vegetables we eat and in the feed of most of the animal products we consume.


(Source: Frompovich, 2015)
(Source: Frompovich, 2015)

“Worldwide, 8 GMO crops have been approved for commercial production; soy, cotton, corn, canola, sugarbeet, papaya, squash or yellow zucchini, and alfalfa, and the biotech industry is in the process of pushing forward additionally modified foods such as rice, apples, and salmon. The four major crops that account for virtually all of the biotech output are soy, cotton, corn, and canola. The remaining GMO crops are exclusively grown in the United States with the exception being papaya which is grown in China in addition to US cultivation.”

In the US, nearly 300 million pounds of glyphosate were used on crops in 2013. (US Department of the Interior, 2016)


Glyphosate Use in US by Year and Crop, 1992-2013

(Source: water.usgs.gov)
(Source: water.usgs.gov)


The following information is from the National Pesticide  Information Center (NPIC, 2015):
  • Glyphosate is an herbicide applied to the leaves of plants to kill both broad leaf plants and grasses.
  • Glyphosate has been one of the most widely used herbicides in the United States since 1974.  It is used in agriculture and forestry, on lawns and gardens, and for weed control in industrial areas. Some products containing glyphosate are used to control aquatic plants.
  • As of 2015, there were over 750 products containing glyphosate for sale in the US.
  • Glyphosate is a non-selective herbicide – it will kill most plants by interfering with plants’ ability to synthesize aromatic amino acids.  This pathway is necessary for plants and some microorganisms’ survival.
  • Glyphosate exposure can take place via the skin, eyes, nose, and ingestion.







(Source: gmo-awareness.com)
(Source: gmo-awareness.com)
This list was published by GMO-Awareness.com in 2011. See More About Glyphosate (RoundUp) for more information on glyphosate and links to numerous studies on its health consequences:
  1. Glyphosate causes disease and biological / physiological disorders in crops
  2. Glyphosate is no longer effective at killing weeds
  3. Glyphosate use is increasing steadily
  4. Glyphosate is not breaking down as promised by Monsanto
  5. Glyphosate causes birth defects, tumors, and reproductive disorders in animals, as well as sharp declines in beneficial insects
  6. Glyphosate is a genotoxic endocrine disruptor to human cells and gut bacteria
  7. Glyphosate is linked to cancer and deadly kidney disease in humans
  8. Glyphosate causes DNA damage
  9. In spite of considerable evidence, t he EPA is still deciding whether glyphosate presents any health risks to humans
  10. Glyphosate resistance is the primary purpose of genetic crop engineering


For additional information, including references to articles published after 2011, also see GMO Myths and Truths: A Citizen’s Guide to the Evidence on the Safety and Efficacy of Genetically Modified Crops and Foods, 3rd Edition. (Robinson, Antoniou, & Fagan, 2015)



(Source: www.moyoway.com)
(Source: www.moyoway.com)






Here’s where it gets personal.
In 2015, I sent urine and tap water samples to The Detox Project for glyphosate residue testing. Their testing uses a scientifically validated LC/MS/MS method – a powerful and highly sensitive procedure for detecting and measuring chemicals in liquid samples. (Wikipedia, 5/20/2016)
To my surprise, the sample of water from my kitchen sink contained an insignificant amount of glyphosate residue but my urine sample was a different story:  3.5ppb (parts per billion) (ng/mL) – higher than the 2.8ppb (ng/mL) average for my area of the country, the Northeast.


(Source: rounduprisks.com)
(Source: rounduprisks.com)
My urine glyphosate finding is disturbing. 3.5 ppb possibly increases my risk for a number of serious health consequences down the road. The relatively high number possibly also explains, along with repeated doses of antibiotics, how my colon came to be overrun with a Clostridium difficile infection in 2010. If my gut microbiome had been diverse and strong, my gut wouldn’t have become overrun with C. diff bacteria.
There’s also the fact that I grew up and lived a large part of my life in the Midwest. If you look at the map and chart above, you’ll see that this area has been doused with a high concentration of glyphosate.
Also, it has been only since I recovered from that C. diff infection that I started to read up on GMO vs organic and began to eat more organic foods. Yet, my life is fairly complicated with many moving parts and most of my work is conducted at my home. I’m able to get to the Union Square Greenmarket only one afternoon a week to shop for organic fruits, veggies, cheeses, and meat. The grocery stores that are convenient to my home carry a limited variety of wild caught fish and organic meats. My social life generally involves meeting friends for meals a few days a week and I take myself out to eat maybe one additional day to avoid cabin fever. I have a gluten allergy and sensitivities to several other common ingredients so am somewhat limited in dishes I can safely eat. And the kicker is that, even in New York City, the majority of well priced, interesting restaurants serve GMO food, much of it very tasty and locally produced) – meaning I’m still getting an ongoing dose of glyphosate in my salads, sushi, and chicken tikka masala.
My glyphosate score doesn’t mean I’m doomed to get any serious health conditions. It has, however, made me realize that I have to work even harder to keep my gut immunity strong.





The Detox Project issued a press release on 25 May 2016 entitled UCSF Presentation Reveals Glyphosate Contamination in People across America summarizing the project’s glyphosate testing results so far from their study launched in 2015. These findings are alarming!
Glyphosate, the most frequently used herbicide in the world, was found in the urine of 93% of people across American during this unique project.
Even worse, the highest levels of glyphosate were found in children!
Additionally, as The Detox Project points out, people who had themselves tested were likely already knowledgeable about the dangers of GMO foods so were inclined to avoid them – and, even so, glyphosate was found in the urine and breast milk samples from 93% of us.
Urine samples were tested by a laboratory at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF)  during this first ever comprehensive and validated LC/MS/MS testing project to be carried out across America.


(Source: www.newparadigm.ws)
(Source: www.newparadigm.ws)
Glyphosate was determined to be A PROBABLE HUMAN CARCINOGEN by the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer in 2015 (IARC, 2015) – and now this toxic product has been shown to exist in the bodies of over 90% of the US population.




Information from The Detox Project’s press release (Detox Project 2015-2016):

Urine and Water Testing Results

“93% of the urine tested by the University of California San Francisco lab tested positive for glyphosate residues. No glyphosate was found in the tap water samples. These results are only from a small percentage of the total samples collected. More data will be released later in 2016 that shows a very similar percentage contamination rate in a much larger number of people, according to the UCSF laboratory.

“The results of this bio-survey come from the first in-lab validated LC/MS/MS testing method used for glyphosate testing of the general public in America.”

Is Glyphosate Safe at Real-Life Exposure Levels?

“Glyphosate has never been studied by regulators or the chemical industry at levels that the human population in the U.S. is being exposed to (under 3 mg/kg body weight/day). This is a huge hole in the global risk assessment of glyphosate, as there is evidence suggesting that low levels of the chemical may hack hormones even more than at mid and high levels, according to independent science – a higher dose does not necessarily make a more toxic, hormone disruptive effect.

“Industry funded science from the dark ages suggested that the higher the dose of a chemical the more dangerous it was. However, modern independent science has discovered that many toxic chemicals have as much or even more of an influence on our health at low doses– these chemicals are known as hormone hackers (endocrine disruptors).

“A study from March 2015 stated that the health costs to the European Union of just some hormone hacking chemicals, in connection with a subset of illnesses known to be linked to hormone interference, is over EUR 150 Billion per year! The study stated that lower IQ, adult obesity and 5% or more of autism cases are all linked to exposure to endocrine disruptors.

Unique Testing Project
“The Detox Project is a unique platform for the testing of toxic chemicals in our bodies and in our food. The aim of the project is to cut out all conflicts of interest in chemical bio-surveys by allowing the public to pay directly for chemical testing that they are interested in.”

The Results

“The regions with the highest levels were the West and the Midwest with an average of 3.053 PPB and 3.050 PPB respectively.

“Glyphosate residues were not observed in any tap water samples during the early phase of the project, most likely due to phosphorus removal during water treatment.

“The results from the UCSF urine testing in America showed a much higher frequency and average glyphosate level than those observed in urine samples in the European Union in 2013. The average level in Europe was around 1 PPB with a frequency of detection of 43.9%.”

“Glyphosate is likely to be one of these hormone hacking chemicals at real-life exposure levels down to 0.1 ppb or below, according to independent science. Regulators and the chemical industry have simply not studied the toxic effects of glyphosate at real-life exposure levels. Find more information on this here.”



(Source: www.treehugger.com)
(Source: www.treehugger.com)







(Source: www.geneticliteracyproject.org)
(Source: www.geneticliteracyproject.org)
Glyphosate incorporates into each cell of a plant so WASHING PRODUCE DOES NOT REMOVE IT. And it accumulates in animal tissues so you get a dose of glyphosate whenever you eat meat and dairy products from animals fed GMO grain feeds. (Carnahan, 2015)
Glyphosate damages the gut microbiome and we know that a dysbiotic gut microbiome can lead to a long list of health problems. See Moms to EPA: Recall Monsanto’s Roundup (Hardin, 2014).
Also see Functional Medicine doc, Jill Carnahan’s, well researched and written article Glyphosate Toxicity: What You Don’t Know Might Kill You!! for information on  glyphosate’s link to:
  • Autism
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Cancer
  • Parkinson’s
  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Inflammatory bowel diseases (Crohn’s and Ulcerative Colitis)
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Depression
  • Infertility
Carnahan also includes her own Detox Project’s Glyphosate Analysis Report in her article along with an explanation of why she thinks the glyphosate residue level in her urine is so high.  (Carnahan, 2016)




(Source: www.motherearthnews.com)
(Source: www.motherearthnews.com)
If you’re interested in learning more about GMOs and glyphosate, I highly recommend GMO Myths and Truths: A Citizen’s Guide to the Evidence on the Safety and Efficacy of Genetically Modified Crops and Foods, 3rd Edition.
See also my post The Cost of Not Eating Organic. (Hardin, 2016).



(Source: articles.mercola.com)
(Source: articles.mercola.com)





“The Detox Project provides glyphosate level testing for urine and water. This testing will provide you with an accurate report on the levels of glyphosate and 150+ man-made chemicals in your urine and water in parts per billion (ppb) and also gives you information about the results of independent peer-reviewed lab studies on rats and other animals that have been completed on glyphosate and glyphosate-based herbicides.

“If you want to be tested, go to http://detoxproject.org/glyphosate-testing-test-yourself/ and give them your email address and they will contact you when the project starts up again in Summer 2016″ (The Detox Project, 2015-2016)

The site also provides other useful information, including telling you how to go about detoxing your body of glyphosate.



(Source: uk.pinterest.com)
(Source: uk.pinterest.com)





Benbrook, C.M. (2016). Trends in glyphosate herbicide use in the United States and globally. Environmental Sciences Europe, 28:3. See: http://enveurope.springeropen.com/articles/10.1186/s12302-016-0070-0

 Carnahan, J. (2015). Glyphosate Toxicity: What You Don’t Know Might Kill You! See: http://www.jillcarnahan.com/2015/11/22/glyphosate-toxicity/http://www.jillcarnahan.com/2015/11/22/glyphosate-toxicity/

The Detox Project. (2016). Glyphosate Testing: Test Yourself. See: http://detoxproject.org/glyphosate-testing-test-yourself/

Detox Project. (5/25/2016). UCSF Presentation Reveals Glyphosate Contamination in People across America. See: http://detoxproject.org/1321-2/

Detox Project. (2015-2016). Glyphosate Testing: Test Yourself. See: http://detoxproject.org/glyphosate-testing-test-yourself/

Frompovich, C. (2015). What’s Your “Daily Value” Of Glyphosate? See: http://www.activistpost.com/2015/03/whats-your-daily-value-of-glyphosate.html

GMO Awareness. (2011). More About Glyphosate (RoundUp). See: https://gmo-awareness.com/resources/glyphosate/

Hardin, J.R. (2016). The Cost of Not Eating Organic. See: http://allergiesandyourgut.com/2016/05/13/cost-not-eating-organic/

Hardin, J.R. (2014). Moms to EPA: Recall Monsanto’s Roundup. See: http://allergiesandyourgut.com/2014/05/30/moms-epa-recall-monsantos-roundup/

International Agency for Research on Cancer, World Health Organization. (2015). IARC Monographs Volume 112: evaluation of five organophosphate insecticides and herbicides. See: http://www.iarc.fr/en/media-centre/iarcnews/pdf/MonographVolume112.pdf

Moyoway.com. (2016). What Is Food Poisoning Today? See: http://www.moyoway.com/food-poisoning.html

National Pesticide  Information Center. (2015). Glyphosate General Fact Sheet. See: http://npic.orst.edu/factsheets/glyphogen.html

Robinson, C., Antoniou, M, & Fagan, J. (2015). GMO Myths and Truths: A Citizen’s Guide to the Evidence on the Safety and Efficacy of Genetically Modified Crops and Foods, 3rd Edition. See:  http://www.amazon.com/GMO-Myths-Truths-Citizens-Genetically/dp/0993436706

Us Department of the Interior. (2016). Pesticide National Synthesis Project. See: https://water.usgs.gov/nawqa/pnsp/usage/maps/show_map.php?year=2012&map=GLYPHOSATE&hilo=L

Wikipedia. (5/20/2016). Liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry. See: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liquid_chromatography%E2%80%93mass_spectrometry




© Copyright 2016. Joan Rothchild Hardin. All Rights Reserved.


DISCLAIMER:  Nothing on this site or blog is intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

A Connection between Folic Acid, GMOs, and Autism



This short interview with Dr Stephanie Seneff is quite interesting. She explains how supplementation with folic acid during pregnancy can interact with the glyphosate in genetically modified foods to produce an autistic brain in the fetus. Dr Seneff work is a good source of research information on the various health dangers created by glyphosate.
Folates, a group of water soluble B-vitamins (also known as Vitamin B9) and naturally found in food, are vital for health. Folic acid is an oxidized synthetic compound used in dietary supplements and food fortification.
This is a transcript of the interview. (iHealthTube.com, 2015)




“Despite the risks associated with high levels of folic acid intake, it is well established that adequate folate intake from the consumption of folate-rich foods is essential for health. Folate aids the complete development of red blood cells, reduces levels of homocysteine in the blood, and supports nervous system function. It is well known for its role in preventing neural tube defects in newborns, so women of childbearing age must be sure to have an adequate intake prior to and during pregnancy.” (Kresser, 2012)
See Kresser’s article The little known (but crucial) difference between folate and folic acid for more information about the difference between folic acid and folates.
(Source: dailyhealthpost.com)
(Source: dailyhealthpost.com)


If you’re interested in reading more about how GMOs and glyphosate are harmful, see the “So What’s the Problem with GMOs?” section in my earlier post Genetically Modified Organisms – Our Food (Hardin, 2014)
And here’s a longer, more comprehensive interview with Dr Stephanie Seneff about The Health Dangers of Roundup (glyphosate) Herbicide.



A major conclusion from the findings Dr Seneff describes in this video is that glyphosate has profound negative effects on the probiotic bacteria making up the gut microbiome, home to most of our immune system. Glyphosate destroys the beneficial bacteria in our guts, triggering an enormous range of health problems.
(Source: draxe.com)
(Source: draxe.com)




Canty, K. (2013). Jeffrey Smith interviews Dr. Stephanie Seneff about Glyphosate. See video: http://vimeo.com/65914121

Hardin, J.R. (5/29/2014). Genetically Modified Organisms – Our Food. See: http://allergiesandyourgut.com/2014/05/29/genetically-modified-organisms/

Health Freedoms. (2009). Autism Triggered by This Recommended Supplement?! See: http://www.healthfreedoms.org/autism-triggered-by-this-recommended-supplement/

iHealthTube.com. (12/17/2015). Autism Triggered by This Recommended Supplement?! – video and transcript. See: https://www.ihealthtube.com/video/autism-triggered-recommended-supplement

Kresser, C. (3/9/2012). The little known (but crucial) difference between folate and folic acid. See: https://chriskresser.com/folate-vs-folic-acid/



© Copyright 2016 Joan Rothchild Hardin. All Rights Reserved.

DISCLAIMER:  Nothing on this site or blog is intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Your Body on a Big Mac – Why It’s Called Junk Food





Have a yen for a Big Mac? Here’s some information that may dampen the urge.




McDonald’s lists these Big Mac ingredients on its McDonald’s USA Ingredients Listing for Popular Menu Items:

100% BEEF PATTY: 100% Pure USDA Inspected Beef; No Fillers, No Extenders. Prepared with Grill Seasoning (Salt, Black Pepper)


PICKLE SLICES: Cucumbers, Water, Distilled Vinegar, Salt, Calcium Chloride, Alum, Potassium Sorbate (Preservative), Natural Flavors (Plant Source), Polysorbate 80, Extractives of Turmeric (Color)

PASTEURIZED PROCESS AMERICAN CHEESE: Milk, Cream, Water, Cheese Culture, Sodium Citrate, Contains 2% or Less of: Salt, Citric Acid, Sodium Phosphate, Sorbic Acid (Preservative), Lactic Acid, Acetic Acid, Enzymes, Sodium Pyrophosphate, Natural Flavor (Dairy Source), Color Added, Soy Lecithin (Added for Slice Separation). CONTAINS: MILK AND SOY LECITHIN

BIG MAC SAUCE: Soybean Oil, Pickle Relish (Diced Pickles, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Sugar, Vinegar, Corn Syrup, Salt, Calcium Chloride, Xanthan Gum, Potassium Sorbate [Preservative], Spice Extractives, Polysorbate 80), Distilled Vinegar, Water, Egg Yolks, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Onion Powder, Mustard Seed, Salt, Spices, Propylene Glycol Alginate, Sodium Benzoate (Preservative), Mustard Bran, Sugar, Garlic Powder, Vegetable Protein (Hydrolyzed Corn, Soy and Wheat), Caramel Color, Extractives of Paprika, Soy Lecithin, Turmeric (Color), Calcium Disodium EDTA (Protect Flavor). CONTAINS: WHEAT, EGG AND SOY



Enriched Bleached Flour (Wheat Flour, Malted Barley Flour, Niacin, Reduced Iron, Thiamin Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid), Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Yeast, Soybean Oil, Contains 2% or Less: Salt, Wheat Gluten, Sesame Seeds, Leavening (Calcium Sulfate, Ammonium Sulfate), May Contain One or More Dough Conditioners (Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate, DATEM, Ascorbic Acid, Azodicarbonamide, Mono and Diglycerides, Monocalcium Phosphate, Enzymes, Calcium Peroxide), Calcium Propionate (Preservative). CONTAINS: WHEAT


I’ll point out a few other things McDonald’s doesn’t mention about their ingredients:
  • The beef they use in their “100% beef patties” and the dairy products mentioned in their list come from factory farmed animals that have been fed on GMO grains and loaded up with antibiotics, growth hormones, and pesticides. See Factory Farming Makes Us Sick and Factory Farming Produces Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria for how factory farming of animals is harmful to us, the soil, and the planet.
  • The wheat, onions, cucumbers, corn used to make high fructose corn syrup, soy derivatives, spices, and lettuce they use are all made from genetically modified crops so you’re also getting a dose of glyphosate (a toxic, broad-spectrum systemic herbicide) when eating any McDonald’s menu items. Glyphosate has been banned in many other countries. See Moms to EPA: Recall Monsanto’s Roundup for the dangers of GMO crops and glyphosate.
  • McDonald’s uses highly refined table salt in its menu items. See The Healing Properties of Unrefined Salts for how processed salt is harmful to our bodies.







This description of what happens in your body within an hour after you consume a Big Mac comes from FastFoodMenuPrice.com (2015):

First 10 minutes–Our brains prefer high-calorie foods

Our brains evolved during a time when food was scarce, so we became adept at choosing high-calorie foods. A regular Big Mac (with cheese and sauce) contains 540 calories and raises your blood sugar to abnormal levels.

Junk food triggers your brain’s reward system by releasing a surge of ‘feel-good’ chemicals – such as the neurotransmitter dopamine – which induce feelings of pleasure. This process works in a similar way to that of drugs such as cocaine and contributes to the likelihood of compulsive eating.

After 20 minutes–Addictive sugars

Did you know that a Big Mac bun contains high levels of high-fructose corn syrup and sodium? Both ingredients are addictive and therefore make your body crave more of them. These ingredients are also harmful and can cause obesity, diabetes and heart disease.

After 30 minutes –Sodium attack on your body

A Big Mac contains 970 milligrams of sodium. This huge amount of salt can result in dehydration. With symptoms that closely mimic those of hunger, it’s easy for dehydration to trick you into thinking you need to go back for another helping of food.

Ingesting too much sodium makes it hard for your kidneys to excrete salt. To try and flush the excess salt out of your system, your body then draws water from surrounding tissues. This fluid buildup means that your heart must work harder to pump blood. This causes high blood pressure and can ultimately lead to heart disease and stroke.

After 40 minutes –Craving more!

Do you ever still feel hungry after just having eaten a Big Mac? This is because you have lost control of your blood sugar, making you crave even more fast food.

The first time you consume a high-calorie meal, your insulin response can reduce your glucose levels making you want to eat more. The high-fructose corn syrup in the Big Mac bun is quickly absorbed by the GI tract, causing insulin spikes and even greater hunger pangs.

After 60 minutes –Slow digestion

Normally the body takes about 24 to 72 hours to digest food. However, hamburgers take a lot more time to digest because they are greasier. It can take more than three days to fully digest a Big Mac.

Also, it takes approximately 51 days to digest trans fat. A Big Mac contains 1.5 grams of trans fat. Different studies have proved that trans fats can be linked to heart disease, obesity, cancer and diabetes.















Nutrition Information: McDonald’s Big Mac

(Source: beforeitsnews.com)
(Source: beforeitsnews.com)












From the Big Mac Museum

(Source: www.bigmacmuseum.com)
(Source: www.bigmacmuseum.com)




Fastfoodmenuprice.com. (2015). What Happens One Hour After Eating A Big Mac? See: https://fastfoodmenuprice.com/big-mac-revealed/

Hardin, J.R. (8/2/2014). The Healing Properties of Unrefined Salts. See: http://allergiesandyourgut.com/2014/08/02/healing-properties-unrefined-salts/

Hardin, J.R. (9/25/2014). Factory Farming Makes Us Sick. http://allergiesandyourgut.com/2014/09/25/factory-farming-makes-us-sick/

Hardin, J.R. (4/14/2015). Factory Farming Produces Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria. See: http://allergiesandyourgut.com/2015/04/14/factory-farming-produces-antibiotic-resistant-bacteria/

Hardin, J.R. (5/30/2015). Moms to EPA: Recall Monsanto’s Roundup. See: http://allergiesandyourgut.com/2014/05/30/moms-epa-recall-monsantos-roundup/

McDonald’s.com. (9/26/2015). McDonald’s USA Ingredients Listing for Popular Menu Items. See: http://nutrition.mcdonalds.com/getnutrition/ingredientslist.pdf



© Copyright 2015 Joan Rothchild Hardin. All Rights Reserved.


DISCLAIMER:  Nothing on this site or blog is intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

‘Safe’ in the US While Banned Elsewhere

Updated 6/28/2015 & 5/15/2016.


(Source: www.thesleuthjournal.com)
(Source: www.thesleuthjournal.com)
This post is for those of you who believe the regulatory agencies in the US tasked with protecting our health and the health of us and our planet are actually fulfilling their mandates.
The US declares as “generally recognized as safe” (GRAS) the use of chemicals that other countries, notably the European Union, have classified as presenting unacceptable risks of harm to the environment or to human health. Co-founder of the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, Stacy Malkan, says, “The policy approach in the U.S. and Europe is dramatically different.” (Hemmingway, 2014)
The European Union bases its chemical management and environmental protection policy decisions on the Precautionary Principle.

The Precautionary Principle

A general definition: The precept that an action should not be taken if the consequences are uncertain and potentially dangerous.
As used in environmental matters: The theory that if the effects of a product or action are unknown, then the product should not be used or the action should not be taken. (Dictionary.com, 2015)
“The precautionary principle enables rapid response in the face of a possible danger to human, animal or plant health, or to protect the environment. In particular, where scientific data do not permit a complete evaluation of the risk, recourse to this principle may, for example, be used to stop distribution or order withdrawal from the market of products likely to be hazardous.” (Europa, 2011)


(Source: jeanninewalston.com)
(Source: jeanninewalston.com)



Use of this  principle “covers cases where scientific evidence is insufficient, inconclusive or uncertain and preliminary scientific evaluation indicates that there are reasonable grounds for concern that the potentially dangerous effects on the environment, human, animal or plant health may be inconsistent with the high level of protection chosen by the EU.” (European Commission, 2000)
The EU’s goal is to ensure a strict level of environmental protection through PREVENTATIVE decision-making. In other words, in the EU, when there is substantial, credible evidence that something poses a danger to humans or the environment, protective action must be taken even if there is continuing scientific uncertainty.
This is the EU’s Communication on Precautionary Principle in its entirety if you wish to read it for yourself.




Now compare the EU’s decision-making policy on risk of harm to the US’s  policy.


 Policy on Health & Environmental Safety: US vs EU 

(Source: james-mcwilliams.com)
(Source: james-mcwilliams.com)


The US government approaches food and chemical safety from exactly the opposite direction: In this country, a high level of proof that something is HARMFUL must be shown before any regulatory action will be taken.
This policy clearly puts the protection of companies over the safety of people, other animals, plants, the soil, water, and air.



(Source: nontoxicdovernh.wordpress.com)
(Source: nontoxicdovernh.wordpress.com)



The case of artificial food coloring and dyes provides an example of how it works in practice:

“Same Study, Different Conclusions

“In the case of Red Dye No. 40, Yellow Dye No. 5 and Yellow Dye No. 6, it means that after considering the same evidence — a 2007 double-blind study by U.K. researchers that found that eating artificially colored food appeared to increase children’s hyperactivity — European and U.S. authorities reached different conclusions. In the U.K., the study persuaded authorities to bar use of these dyes as food additives. The EU chose to require warning labels on products that contain them — greatly reducing their use, according to Lisa Lefferts, senior scientist with the nonprofit Center for Science in the Public Interest in Washington, D.C. In the U.S., the study prompted the CSPI to petition the Food and Drug Administration for a ban on a number of food colorings. But in its review of these dyes, presented in 2011, the FDA found the study inconclusive because it looked at effects of a mixture of additives rather than individual colorings — and so these colors remain in use.
“While FDA approval is required for food additives, the agency relies on studies performed by the companies seeking approval of chemicals they manufacture or want to use in making determinations about food additive safety, Natural Resources Defense Council senior scientist Maricel Maffini and NRDC senior attorney Tom Neltner note in their April 2014 report, Generally Recognized as Secret. “No other developed country that we know of has a similar system in which companies can decide the safety of chemicals put directly into food,” says Maffini. The standing law that covers these substances — the 1958 Food Additives Amendment to the 1938 Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act — “makes requiring testing [of chemicals] more cumbersome than under TSCA,” says Neltner.”
– Hemmingway, 2014


Did you notice the part about the FDA’s relying on studies done by the very company that manufactures the product to make their determination of the product’s safety? And this dangerous policy isn’t limited just to food dyes.





By the way, Yellow 5, Yellow 6, Red 40, Blue 1, Caramel coloring, and others – all FDA-approved as GRAS – have also been linked to neurological problems, allergies, brain cancer, ADD, ADHD, and more. They’re banned in France, UK, Norway, Austria, Finland, and other countries but NOT in the USA. In the US, you’ll find them in most packaged products – for example, candies, cereals, sports drinks, fruit flavored drinks, baked goods, packaged cheeses, and boxed macaroni and cheese. (Seattle Organic Restaurants, 2015)


(Source: foodbabe.com)
(Source: foodbabe.com)










(Source: rmpjc.org)
(Source: rmpjc.org)


The US FDA classifies GMOs as “GRAS” – in spite of a long list of research findings showing the opposite. The US government is even fighting labeling so consumers could be able to choose to avoid GMOs.
30 countries have banned all or some GMOs in their food supply. See the Organic Consumers Organization’s Countries & Regions With GE Food/Crop Bans.





(Source: www.slideshare.net)
(Source: www.slideshare.net)
BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole) and  BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene),  derived from petroleum,  are used as preservatives in processed meats, cereals, candies,  chewing gums, and other food products in the US. They’re also used as frying oils in many fast-food restaurants.
Both BHA and BHT have been linked to liver and kidney damage, fetal abnormalities, mental and physical retardation, cancer, baldness, increased appetite, loss of energy, and insomnia.
BHA and BHT are banned in European countries and Japan but NOT in the US. (Seattle Organic Restaurants, 2015)






(Source: www.fatnews.com)
(Source: www.fatnews.com)
Proctor and Gamble created Olestra, a sucrose polyester, to be used for lowering the fat content in processed foods. Olestra (brand name Olean) is used as a frying oil and is found in 0 calorie/ 0 cholesterol/ 0 fat products such as fat-free fries and potato chips.
Olestra has been linked to GI problems, irritable bowel syndrome, weight gain, and cramps. It blocks the body’s ability to absorb vitamins and essential minerals.
The UK, Canada, and some other countries have banned olestra. The US FDA declares it GRAS as a food additive and replacement for unhealthy oils. (Seattle Organic Restaurants, 2015)





(Source: ahealthieryouisabetteryou.wordpress.com)
(Source: ahealthieryouisabetteryou.wordpress.com)
Brominated vegetable oil (BVO) is derived from corn or soy and bonded with bromine for use as an emulsifier in fruit-flavored sodas and sports drinks (eg, Gatorade, Mountain Dew, Fanta, Powerade) to keep their flavor oils  in suspension and give them a uniform color.  BVO is also patented as a flame retardant.
It’s so poisonous that only two ounces of a 2% solution can poison a child.  Bromine absorbed by the body replaces iodine and causes iodine deficiency.  Brominated vegetable oil has been linked to an increased risk of breast cancer, prostate cancer, ovarian cancer, thyroid problems, and infertility.
And, by the way, the vast majority of corn and soy crops grown in the US (the source of BVO) is genetically modified.


(Source: www.wholefoodsmarket.com)
(Source: www.wholefoodsmarket.com)
BVO is banned in 100 countries, including Japan and the European Union countries. The FDA has allowed its use as GRAS in the US. In May 2014, under pressure from consumer groups, Coca-Cola and PepsiCo announced they would work toward removing it from all their drinks. (USA Today, 2014) (Seattle Organic Restaurants, 2015)






(Source: www.medicaldaily.com)
(Source: www.medicaldaily.com)


Potassium bromate is an oxidizing agent used in commercial baking to bleach and improve the elasticity of dough. It speeds up the baking process, makes it cheaper, and results in baked goods that are softer, fluffier, and whiter.
Potassium bromate has been linked to kidney damage, neurological disorders, thyroid problems, GI discomfort, and cancer.
Bromated flour has been banned  in many countries, including the European Union, Brazil, Canada – and even China. In the US, it has remained legal since it was first patented for use in bread making in 1914. (Seattle Organic Restaurants, 2015) (Yoquinto, 2012)





(Source: 360yourlife.com)
(Source: 360yourlife.com)


Most cows in the US are treated with recombinant bovine growth hormone  to increase their milk production. These hormones impair the animals’ immune systems so many of them get painful udder infections. The cows are then given antibiotics to control the infections. If you’re consuming milk from cows injected with rBGH or rBST, you too are getting dosed with growth hormones and antibiotics.
The US FDA approved multinational agrochemical and agricultural biotechnology giant Monsanto’s bovine growth hormones, rBGH and rBST, as GRAS.
Interesting tidbit: Margaret Miller, a scientist working on the development of rBGH at Monsanto, was later appointed as Deputy Director of the FDA. Soon after her appointment, the FDA gave approval to these bovine growth hormones.
rBGH and rBST growth hormones have been linked to breast and prostate  cancer, thyroid disease, diabetes, obesity, infertility, asthma, allergies, early onset of puberty, and breast growth in 5 year old girls and men in their 40s.
Bovine growth hormones are banned in many European countries, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Israel, and France. The FDA allows their widespread use in the US. (Seattle Organic Restaurants, 2015)




(Source: www.infiniteunknown.net)
(Source: www.infiniteunknown.net)
Earlier this year, the FDA admitted that 70% of the chickens grown in the US contain arsenic, a toxic chemical that causes death in high dosages and cancer at lower doses. It’s added to chicken feed to make store-bought chicken meat look pink and fresh.
EU countries have banned the use of arsenic in chicken feed. (DeCuir, 2015) (Seattle Organic Restaurants, 2015)







(Source: www.thisland.illinois.edu)
(Source: www.thisland.illinois.edu)


Formaldehyde is a toxic flammable gas used in the production of fertilizers, bleaching agents, food preservatives, hair straightening products, and personal care products such as baby shampoos and soaps. Food companies also add formaldehyde to foods such as milk, noodles, and meats to extend their shelf life.
Formaldehyde is linked to human cell damage. Long term exposure can cause leukemia while short term exposure can cause watery or burning eyes, asthma, headaches, skin irritation, and nausea.
The FDA allows the use of formaldehyde and formaldehyde-releasing agents in cosmetics, personal care products,  poultry and food-fish feeds (as an antimicrobial to control salmonella). In the US, only Minnesota has banned in-state sales of children’s personal care products containing them. Formaldehyde and formaldehyde-releasing agents are banned in Japan, and many other countries, including the European Union. (Grossman, 2014), (Seattle Organic Restaurants, 2015), (Shook Hardy & Bacon, 2014)






(Source: www.seattleorganicrestaurants.com)
(Source: www.seattleorganicrestaurants.com)
Neonicotinoids are a relatively new class of pesticides, chemically related to nicotine, that attack insects’ central nervous systems, causing paralysis and death. These neurotoxins have been linked to bee colony collapse. They enter plants’ tissues and can remain in the soil up to 500 days after spraying, causing other plants grown in the treated soil to produce toxic nectar and pollen.
Neonicotinoid pesticides can also cause neurological problems in humans. Children who are exposed to these neurotoxins and endocrine disruptors while in the womb have a higher risk of developing cancer, neurological problems, mental disorders, autism, ADD, and ADHD.
The European Union has put a two-year ban on neonicotinoid pesticides. The US  rejects banning this neurotoxin. (Beyond Pesticides, undated) (Seattle Organic Restaurants, 2015)






(Source: bloguvib.wordpress.com)
(Source: bloguvib.wordpress.com)


Azodicarbonamide (ADA) is commonly used as a bleaching agent in commercially baked white breads, cakes, and pastries and is the chemical that keeps bread soft and fresh-seeming many days after you bought it.  Azodicarbonamide also improves flour’s strength and elasticity – and is a chemical used in the production of foamed plastics.
It has been linked to asthma, allergies, other respiratory problems – and much worse.
This chemical has been banned by most European countries and Australia. Some countries, including Singapore, have even instituted severe penalties for using it: 15 years in jail and $450,000 fine.
Here’s a 2014 list of 500 commercially baked products that contain Azodicarbonamide – bagels, muffins, pizzas, buns, breads, pastries, croissants, bread crumbs, pitas, croutons, stuffing mixes… You get the idea. (Montuori, 2014) (Seattle Organic Restaurants, 2015)





(Source: www.naturalnews.com)
(Source: www.naturalnews.com)




There are many more. In fact, the vast majority of packaged foods available in the US contain chemicals that are banned in other countries. The FDA allows over 3,000 food additives in US food production, including foods and products intended for infants and young children. Many of these additives are banned in other countries because of their health risks. (Mercola, 2015)




(Source: dailysuperfoodlove.com)
(Source: dailysuperfoodlove.com)






I want to close with one more example: A comparison of the French fries sold by McDonald’s in the US and in the UK.



While commercial French fries aren’t exactly known as healthy foods, McDonald’s fries sold in the US are much unhealthier than the version they sell in the UK.


(Source: www.collective-evolution.com)
(Source: www.collective-evolution.com)


For one thing, McDonald’s fries sold in the UK list four ingredients while their US version list seven, mostly chemical additives. But look at the ingredients lists for both countries carefully and you’ll see they’re a bit misleading. At the bottom of the US list, we learn that the vegetable oils contain other ingredients – eg, TBHQ and dimethylpolysiloxane. At the bottom of the UK list, we’re told non-hydrogenated vegetable oil is used to prepare the fries in the restaurants. Does this mean hydrogenated versions are used when the potatoes are fried the first time at McDonald’s factories, before they’re frozen and distributed to the various franchises?
In the US, McDonald’s fries are cooked in hydrogenated canola and/or soybean oil, two of the unhealthiest oil choices and both most likely made from genetically engineered plants. Their fries here also contain TBHQ, Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate, Dimethylpolysiloxane , and “natural beef flavor” (made with wheat and milk derivatives). (Mercola, 2015)


In the US, McDonald’s cooks its fries in canola and soybean oils, plus hydrogenated soybean oil. Canola oil isn’t totally terrible for you since it’s low in saturated fats and fairly high in unsaturated fats, including Omega-3 fatty acids – but it’s most likely to be made from GMO plants. 90% of the world’s canola crop is genetically modified.
Hydrogenating soybean oil turns its unsaturated fat into saturated fat, making it easier to cook with and turning it into a preservative. This soybean fat has now become a trans fat and trans fats have been strongly linked to heart disease. And there’s also the fact that about 84% of the soy beans grown in the US are GMO.
McDonald’s French fries sold in the UK are fried in non-hydrogenated sunflower or rapeseed oil at the restaurants. Both these oils are high in Omega-6 fatty acids that oxidize to cyclic aldehydes. The rapeseed is also GMO.
And remember that McDonald’s fries its potatoes twice: Once during preparation at the factory before they’re frozen and shipped out to their franchise restaurants and again before they’re served.
Overall, while definitely not so good for you, the oils used in making the UK version are healthier than the US version. (Goyanes, 2015) (Gunnars, 2015) (Mercola, 2015)




Tertiary butylhydroquinone) is a form of butane used as an FDA approved as GRAS chemical preservative in foodstuffs to delay the onset of rancidness and extend the foodstuff’s storage life. You’ll find it in many products: from crackers, potato chips, pet foods, cosmetics, baby skincare products, varnish, lacquers, resins, to explosive compounds.
High doses of TBHQ can cause nausea, delirium, collapse, tinnitus, and vomiting. It’s also linked to hyperactivity in children as well as asthma, rhinitis, dermatitis, restlessness, and aggravation of  ADHD symptoms.
Long term high doses in lab animals are linked to the development of cancerous precursors in the stomach and DNA damage. It’s also linked to estrogen disruption in women. (Botes, 2011)



Sodium acid pyrophosphate (also referred to as disodium dihydrogen pyrophosphate) is mined from phosphate rock and then processed with sodium and other molecules into a synthetic chemical used as a food additive classified as GRAS by the FDA.
It’s used as leavening agent to fluff up foods, in non-dairy creamers to reduce acidity, in processed lunch meats to keep them moist, in breads to retard molds, in cheeses to help them retain their shape, in potato products to retard blackening, in tuna and other seafood to keep it from discoloring or drying out.
Phosphates in general have been linked to renal failure and cardiovascular disease. Sodium phosphate in laxatives has been linked to severe dehydration, electrolyte imbalances, organ damage, bone and tooth decay. (Marshall, 2014)



Dimethylpolysiloxane is a silicone-based organic polymer. It’s FDA approved as GRAS in foods. It’s also used in silicone caulks, adhesives, aquarium sealants, mold release agents, polishes, cosmetics, hair conditioners, as a filler in breast implants, and Silly Putty.
The FDA also permits dimethylpolysiloxane to be preserved by a variety of chemicals that don’t have to be listed on the label – including formaldehyde, a toxic chemical linked to allergies, brain damage, cancer, and autoimmune disorders. (Food Babe, 2013)
No major studies have been conducted on the safety of dimethylpolysiloxane yet the FDA approves it as GRAS in our foods – in anything except milk.
McDonald’s uses it as an anti-foaming agent and to reduce oil spattering in its US franchises. While dimethylpolysiloxane isn’t banned in the UK, McDonald’s doesn’t use it in its French fries there.



The so called “natural beef flavor” McDonald’s uses in its French fries in the US for some reason is made with hydrolyzed wheat and hydrolyzed milk so they have to carry a wheat and milk allergen warning. Hydrolysis is an industrial process of of digesting something with chemical agents. And the traces of highly processed  beef byproducts along with the milk definitely keep them from being vegetarian or vegan.
McDonald’s fries in the UK contain no “natural beef flavor” so apparently it’s not necessary to include it. (Mercola, 2015)



Citric acid is naturally found in fruits and vegetables. McDonald’s uses it in the US to preserve the freshness of their frying oils – no doubt in a highly processed form. Somehow it’s not a necessary ingredient in the UK.


Dextrose, also called glucose, is a simple form of sugar derived from starch. It can be refined from many kinds of starch, including wheat, rice, potato, cassava, and arrowroot. The cheapest and most common source is corn. I’ll remind you that the vast majority of corn grown in the US (about 88% is GMO). Genetically modified corn is also grown in the EU.
Dextrose is used in McDonald’s US and UK franchises to give their fries that uniform golden brown color.



While natural, unprocessed salt contains trace minerals we need, refined table salt (the kind used by McDonald’s and pretty much all other restaurants, fast food or otherwise) is quite unhealthy. But it’s cheap and makes us thirsty for those enormous Cokes.
Refined table salt is quite different from natural, unprocessed salts. It no longer has the ability to combine with our body fluids, so undermines necessary, basic chemical and metabolic processes. Water retention, kidney and blood pressure problems, gall stones, and many other serious health problems can result from refined salt consumption.
Unrefined salts contain trace minerals that support the proper functioning of all our bodily systems, including the immune system, glandular system and nervous system. These trace minerals have been processed out of refined table salt.
For more on processed vs unprocessed salt, see The Healing Properties of Unrefined Salts.
Processed salt is use on McDonald’s fries in both the US and the UK.
And we’re not even talking about what’s in the ketchup!




(Source: www.uleduneering.com)
(Source: www.uleduneering.com)
Doesn’t this comparison of the ingredients in McDonald’s French fries in the US and the UK make you wonder how concerned our governmental agencies actually are about our health?
As Robert Mercola says,
“Still if McDonald’s can make a tasty French fry without preservatives, antifoaming agents, color stabilizers, TBHQ, and added flavorings for its British restaurants, why do they refuse to make them without this junk for Americans? (Mercola, 2015)



(Source: www.collective-evolution.com)
(Source: www.collective-evolution.com)
I highly recommend watching this short Michael Pollan video: Watch This Video and You’ll Never Eat McDonald’s French Fries Again … in the US or anywhere else in the world.
Now ponder this:
(Source: www.foodinsight.org)
(Source: www.foodinsight.org)

Beyond Pesticides. (undated. Chemicals Implicated. See: http://www.beyondpesticides.org/pollinators/chemicals.php

Botes, S. (2011). TBHQ – Why this preservative should be avoided. See: http://www.naturalnews.com/031318_TBHQ_food_preservatives.html

Decuir, L. (2015). Finally! The FDA Admits That Nearly Over 70% of U.S. Chickens Contain Cancer-Causing Arsenic. See: http://www.msn.com/en-ca/foodanddrink/foodnews/finally-the-fda-admits-that-nearly-over-70percent-of-us-chickens-contain-cancer-causing-arsenic/ar-AA8cWca

Dictionary.com. (2015). Precautionary principle. See: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/precautionary+principle

European Commission. (2000). EU’s Communication on Precautionary Principle. See: http://www.gdrc.org/u-gov/precaution-4.html

Europa: Summaries of EU Legislation. (2011). The precautionary principle. See: http://europa.eu/legislation_summaries/consumers/consumer_safety/l32042_en.htm

Food Babe. (2013). You Won’t Believe Where Silly Putty Is Hiding In Your Food. See: http://foodbabe.com/2013/10/22/sillyputty/

Goyanes, C. (2015). What’s REALLY Inside Those McDonald’s French Fries? See: http://www.livestrong.com/article/1002598-whats-really-inside-those-mcdonalds-french-fries/

Grossman, E. (2014). BANNED IN EUROPE, SAFE IN THE U.S.: Who determines whether chemicals are safe — and why do different governments come up with such different answers? See: http://ensia.com/features/banned-in-europe-safe-in-the-u-s/

Gunnars, K. (2015). Canola Oil: Good or Bad? See: http://authoritynutrition.com/canola-oil-good-or-bad/

Hardin, J.R. (2014). The Healing Properties of Unrefined Salts. See: http://allergiesandyourgut.com/2014/08/02/healing-properties-unrefined-salts/

Hemmingway, S. (2014). Banned in Europe, Safe in the U.S. See: http://www.healthfreedoms.org/banned-in-europe-safe-in-the-u-s/

Marshall, L. (2014).  Is disodium dihydrogen pyrophosphate (sodium acid pyrophosphate) natural? See: http://newhope360.com/ingredients-general/is-disodium-dihydrogen-pyrophosphate-natural

Mercola, R. (2015). The Big Food Discrepancy: Why Are American Foods Routinely More Toxic Than European Versions? See: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2015/02/11/mcdonalds-fries-ingredients.aspx

Montuori, N. (2014). Yoga Mat Chemical “Azodicarbonamide” Found in Nearly 500 Foods. See: http://www.ordinaryvegan.net/adalist/

Organic Consumers Organization. (undated).  Countries & Regions With GE Food/Crop Bans. See: https://www.organicconsumers.org/old_articles/gefood/countrieswithbans.php

Polan, M. (2014). Video: Watch This Video and You’ll Never Eat McDonald’s French Fries Again. See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rbZBJT358_Y

Seattle Organic Restaurants. (2015).Top 10 foods, additives and preservatives that are banned in many countries except US. See: http://www.seattleorganicrestaurants.com/vegan-whole-food/foods-banned-in-other-countries-but-we-eat-in-us.php

Shook Hardy & Bacon. (2014). EFSA issues opinion on formaldehyde in animal feed. See: http://www.lexology.com/library/detail.aspx?g=c7f83204-2b3d-43cd-ba74-31f81433a10d

USA Today. (2014). Coke, Pepsi dropping controversial ‘BVO’ from all drinks. See: http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/05/05/coke-pepsi-dropping-bvo-from-all-drinks/8736657/

Yoquinto, L. (2012). The Truth About Potassium Bromate. See: http://www.livescience.com/36206-truth-potassium-bromate-food-additive.html



© Copyright 2015 Joan Rothchild Hardin. All Rights Reserved.


DISCLAIMER:  Nothing on this site or blog is intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Moms to EPA: Recall Monsanto’s Roundup

An article called MOMS TO EPA: RECALL MONSANTO’S ROUNDUP arrived in my inbox this morning, the day after I’d posted Genetically Modified Organisms – Our Food.
It tells the  stories of  how two groups of mothers, Moms Across America and Thinking Moms Revolution, discovered that the serious health problems their children suffered from were linked to exposure to the chemical glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup.
When these moms had their sick children and the rest of their families’ glyphosate levels checked, the tests revealed high, unsafe levels in their children’s urine, in the families’ drinking water, and in the mothers’ breast milk.
This turned them into activists who are now taking action to get the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to recall Monsanto’s Roundup, the most widely used herbicide in the world.
The stories of their children’s suffering from entirely preventable illnesses are heart breaking – their stories of how they brought their children back to health by removing all GMOs from their diets are inspiring.
I’m also reprinting the article here because it contains links to the plentiful scientific research findings that demonstrate the serious harm being done to humans, animals and the environment by glyphosate. I’ve added a Source list after the article.
Glyphosate is the active chemical in Monsanto’s herbicide Roundup, which is sprayed on crops grown from its Roundup Ready seeds. Roundup Ready seeds have been genetically engineered to be resistant to glyphosate – allowing farmers to douse their crops with Roundup herbicide without killing the crops themselves.
Since Monsanto introduced Roundup in 1975, it has become the best-selling herbicide in the world. Its prolific use has led to the emergence of glyphosate-resistant weeds – inducing farmers to spray ever heavier amounts of Roundup on their crops.

Note: I’ve added a list of sources to the bottom of the original article.





The Organic Consumers Association’s article:


Moms to EPA: Recall Monsanto’s Roundup
By Alexis Baden-Mayer
Organic Consumers Association, May 29, 2014

For related articles and information, please visit OCA’s  All About Organics page, our Genetic Engineering page, and our Millions Against Monsanto page.


Hell hath no fury . . . like a mother whose child has been sickened by a toxin that’s almost impossible to avoid.

Two activist groups, Moms Across America and Thinking Moms Revolution, want the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to recall Monsanto’s Roundup, the most widely used herbicide/pesticide in the world.

Now is the time to do it, they say, because the EPA is conducting a registration review of glyphosate.

Representatives of the two groups contacted the EPA to request a meeting. When the EPA ignored them, they rallied supporters. In just three days, about 10,000 moms from all over the country rang the phones off the hook at the EPA.

A week later, five Moms Across America leaders were sitting around a boardroom table with nine EPA employees who have the power to recall Roundup. The moms brought lawyers, scientists and advocates from Organic Consumers Association, Natural Resources Defense Council, Consumers Union, Beyond Pesticides and the Truth-In-Labeling Coalition as back-up.

What was supposed to be a one-hour meeting turned into two. The EPA’s Dana Vogel, director of the Health Effects Division in the Office of Pesticide Programs, and other EPA staff stayed glued to their seats as one mother after another shared heart-wrenching stories of parenting children with life-threatening allergies, severe gastrointestinal problems, mysterious autism-spectrum disorders, and major nutritional deficiencies.

The common thread in those stories? Exposure to glyphosate, the key ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup.

Wrenching tales of preventable illnesses

The activist moms had long suspected pesticides might be behind their children’s health problems. So they had their families tested for glyphosate. The tests showed unsafe levels of glyphosate in their drinking water, in their breast milk and in their children’s urine.

That’s when they resolved to get in front of the EPA. And when they did, they told their stories.

Moms Across America co-founder Zen Honeycutt recounted how when she learned of the link between glyphosate and autism, she had her middle child, who had been exhibiting autism symptoms, tested for glyphosate. His urine had 8.7 parts per billion glyphosate—eight times more than is allowed in drinking water in the E.U. She immediately eliminated all potential sources of glyphosate from his diet. After six weeks, the glyphosate was out of his system. And so were the autism symptoms. He stopped hitting people, and his grades went back up from D’s to A’s.

After a year of eating organic, her eldest son’s walnut allergy went from a 19 to a 0.2. It’s no longer life-threatening.

In fact, all of the mothers’ children suffered from deteriorating conditions until they put them on all-organic diets. When they figured out that going organic was the only thing that helped ease their children’s symptoms, they started investigating the food they had been eating for possible causes of their children’s poor health.

Each mother began to suspect glyphosate.

Zoe Swartz, leader of East Coast Moms Across America and founder of GMO Free Lancaster County told the EPA, “I’m really angry that I didn’t know that there was glyphosate in the food I was feeding my daughter.” She described her toddler’s problems with “leaky gut syndrome” which has been linked to glyphosate exposure. After three weeks of an organic diet, the child’s symptoms began to disappear.

Megan Davenhall of Thinking Moms Revolution, mother of an 11-year-old boy with autism, told the EPA, “It’s going to be a long road for us.”

She began her research when her son was diagnosed at age three. As she turned to organic foods, and eliminated chemicals, he started to grow—something he hadn’t done for two and a half years. He weighed only 38 pounds at age six. Now, Davenhall told the EPA, “He’s doing better. He’s not off the spectrum. … It’s a long road for us, because my son was so very damaged. … He was skin and bones and it’s taken us years to recover his gut health.”

“The damage didn’t need to happen to him,” Davenhall said. “And I don’t want to see it happen to one other kid out there, not one. What we feed our kids, what we put into our bodies, is the most important thing. Healthy food should be available for everybody. It needs to happen. It needs to happen today.”

Sarah Cusack of Thriving Family Health talked about her daughter Claire who at 12 months, changed from a happy, easy-going baby to a miserable, constipated baby who was literally starving. She was emaciated. She had a huge bloated belly. At 20 months, she was diagnosed with celiac disease. But the turning point came when she switched to an organic diet. Claire is now a healthy six-year-old. Her mom is a health coach. Cusack says that an all-organic diet is the centerpiece of her practice. She’s seen improvement in clients with myriad health problems, including migraines, eczema, rashes, gastro-intestinal conditions, mood disorders like anxiety and depression, constipation and auto-immune conditions.

Swaying decision-makers with Science

After the testimonials, It was time to hit the EPA with hard science.

Honeycutt delivered a 20-minute presentation on how glyphosate figures as an environmental cause of so many of the diseases impacting our kids today. She left behind a binder, prepared by Moms Across America volunteers, packed with scientific articles supporting her assertions. Zen’s presentation and the materials she presented to the EPA covered the following points.

•    Exposure to glyphosate correlates with chronic illness. Chronically ill people have significantly higher levels of glyphosate in their systems than healthy people.

•    Glyphosate is an endocrine disruptor which is toxic to placental cells. This means it may impact our ability to conceive and carry healthy babies to term. It may also cause breast cancer.

•    Glyphosate destroys the gut bacteria we need for good health. Scientists have observed that in chickens and cattle, glyphosate kills the good gut bacteria while leaving behind bacteria that causes food poisoning. Glyphosate’s negative impact on our microbiome may be the reason for increasing rates of allergies, celiac sprue and gluten intolerance, and colitis and Crohn’s disease.

•    Glyphosate makes vaccines far more toxic than they would otherwise be. When children are overexposed to glyphosate, they are more likely to react badly to vaccination. There’s an intricate connection between the gut and the brain, such that an unhealthy digestive system translates into pathologies in the brain. Aluminum, mercury and glyphosate work synergistically to create severe deficiency in sulfate supplies to the brain. This may be what’s causing the epidemic levels of autism and other diseases such as Alzheimer’s.

•    Glyphosate is a chelator that deprives living things of vital nutrients, vitamins and minerals. This is how glyphosate kills plants. It may also be how it’s killing people. Glyphosate-induced vitamin deficiency may be a factor in the growing cancer rates. Glyphosate has been directly linked to Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. A recent meta-analysis found that exposure to glyphosate doubled the likelihood of contracting B cell lymphoma.

Will the EPA consider this evidence and move to protect our children from glyphosate?

We’re about to find out.

For five years, the EPA has been collecting and analyzing data. This year (2014), the agency will publish a risk assessment and open a 60-day public comment period. Then it will publish a proposed registration and provide another opportunity for public comments.

Finally, the EPA will make a registration decision to either continue business-as-usual, place new restrictions on the use of glyphosate, or to take it off the market.

Moms want it off the market.

Moms Across America and Thinking Moms Revolution are currently working with the EPA to develop protocols for an independent scientific study of glyphosate in breast milk for inclusion in the agency’s review.

These moms won’t stop until Roundup is recalled and they need your help. Please join the Recall Roundup campaign at Moms Across America or Thinking Moms Revolution.


Alexis Baden-Mayer is political director of the Organic Consumers Association.For more information on this topic or related issues you can search the thousands of archived articles on the OCA website.Organic Consumers Association · 6771 South Silver Hill Drive, Finland MN 55603 ·
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This is the article as it appears on the Organic Consumers Association site: http://www.organicconsumers.org/articles/article_30153.cfm



SOURCES CITED IN THE ARTICLE – listed in the order the links appear

All About Organics pageWhy We Should All Eat More Organic Food. Organic Consumers Association. See:  http://organicconsumers.org/organlink.cfm

Genetic Engineering page:  Earth Open Source. GMO Myths and Truths. Organic Consumers Association. See:  http://www.organicconsumers.org/gelink.cfm

Millions Against Monsanto pageMillions Against Monsanto. Organic Consumers Association. See: http://www.organicconsumers.org/monsanto/

Moms Across America:  Moms Across America. See: http://www.organicconsumers.org/monsanto/

Thinking Moms Revolution:  Thinking Moms Revolution. See: https://www.facebook.com/thinkingmomsrevolution

recall Monsanto’s Roundup:  See: https://www.facebook.com/events/897793350237253/

glyphosate:   Mercola, R. (April 15 2014). New Studies Reveal Damaging Effects of Glyphosate. Organic Consumers Association. See: http://www.organicconsumers.org/articles/article_29790.cfm

tested for glyphosate:  Glyphosate Testing Kit for Urine and Water. See: http://www.microbeinotech.com/Default.aspx?tabid=57

unsafe levels of glyphosate:  Glyphosate Testing Full Report: Findings in American Mothers’ Breast Milk, Urine and Water. See: http://www.momsacrossamerica.com/glyphosate_testing_results

Zen HoneycuttCA State Grange Rally for GE Labeling Jan 6th CA Capitol Steps- Zen Honeycutt’s Speech. Moms Across America. See: http://www.momsacrossamerica.com/ca_capitol_steps_speech

glyphosate and autismJeffrey Smith interviews Dr. Stephanie Seneff about Glyphosate. See video:  http://vimeo.com/6591412

GMO Free Lancaster County:  See:  https://www.facebook.com/GMOFREELANCASTERCOUNTYorg

linked to glyphosate exposure:   Samsel, A. & Seneff, S. (2013). Glyphosate’s Suppression of Cytochrome P450 Enzymes and Amino Acid Biosynthesis by the Gut Microbiome: Pathways to Modern Diseases. Entropy 2013, 15, 1416-1463. See: http://groups.csail.mit.edu/sls/publications/2013/Seneff_Entropy-15-01416.pdf

Thinking Moms Revolution:   Thinking Moms Revolution. See: http://thinkingmomsrevolution.com/

Thriving Family Health:  Sarah Cusack Scholl. See: http://www.thrivingfamilyhealth.com

Exposure to glyphosate:  Kruger, M. et al.(2014). Detection of Glyphosate Residues in Animals and Humans. Journal of Environmental & Analytical Toxicology, 2014, 4:2.
See: http://omicsonline.org/open-access/detection-of-glyphosate-residues-in-animals-and-humans-2161-0525.1000210.pdf

Glyphosate is an endocrine disrupter:   Gastnier, C. et al. (2009). Glyphosate-based herbicides are toxic and endocrine disruptors in human cell lines. Toxicology, 2009, 262:3, 184-91. See: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19539684

toxic to placental cells:  Richard, S. et al. (2005). Differential Effects of Glyphosate and Roundup on Human Placental Cells and Aromatase. Environmental Health Perspectives, 2005; 113:6, 716–720. See: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1257596/

ability to conceive:   Mercola, R. (April 1 2014). Roundup Toxicity May Impact Male Fertility: Study. See: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/04/01/Roundup-toxicity-male-infertility.aspx

cause breast cancer:   Thongprakaisang S. et al. (2013). Glyphosate induces human breast cancer cells growth via estrogen receptors. Food & Chemical Toxicology, 2013, 59, 129-36. See: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23756170

Glyphosate destroys the gut bacteria:  Sustainable Pulse. (Sept 7 2013). New Review Shows Glyphosate Destroys Human Health and Biodiversity. See: http://sustainablepulse.com/2013/09/07/new-review-shows-glyphosate-destroys-human-health-and-biodiversity/#.U4i24ighy-9

chickens:  Shehata. A. A. et al. (2013). The effect of glyphosate on potential pathogens and beneficial members of poultry microbiota in vitro. Current  Microbiology, 2013 66:4, 350-8. See: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23224412

cattle:  Kruger, M. et al. (2013). Glyphosate suppresses the antagonistic effect of Enterococcus spp. on Clostridium botulinum. Anaerobe, 2013, 20,74-8.  See: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23396248

Glyphsate’s negative impact on our microbiome:  Polan, M. (2013). Some of My Best Friends are Germs. New York Times Magazine, May 15 2013. See: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/19/magazine/say-hello-to-the-100-trillion-bacteria-that-make-up-your-microbiome.html?pagewanted=all

increasing rates of allergies:  Basulto, D. (2014). The secret to treating your allergies may lie in your stomach. WashingtonPost.com, April 17 2014. See: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/innovations/wp/2014/04/17/the-secret-to-treating-your-allergies-may-lie-in-your-stomach/

celiac sprue and gluten intolerance:  Samsel, A. & Seneff, S. (2013). Glyphosate, pathways to modern diseases II: Celiac sprue and gluten intolerance. Interdisciplinary Toxicology, 2013, 6:4, 159–184. See: http://sustainablepulse.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/Glyphosate_II_Samsel-Seneff.pdf

Crohn’s disease:  Samsel, A. & Seneff, S. (2013). Glyphosate’s Suppression of Cytochrome P450 Enzymes and Amino Acid Biosynthesis by the Gut Microbiome: Pathways to Modern Diseases. Entropy, 2013, 15:4), 1416-1463. See: http://www.mdpi.com/1099-4300/15/4/1416

Glyphosate makes vaccines far more toxic:   Viadro, C. I. (2014). Sulfate, Sleep and Sunlight: The Disruptive and Destructive Effects of Heavy Metals and Glyphosate. Mercola.com. See:  http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/05/08/heavy-metals-glyphosate-health-effects.aspx

epidemic levels of autism and other diseases such as Alzheimer’s:  Seneff, S. (2013). Roundup: The “Nontoxic” Chemical that May Be Destroying our Health. The Weston A. Price Foundation. See:  http://www.westonaprice.org/health-topics/Roundup-the-nontoxic-chemical-that-may-be-destroying-our-health/

growing cancer rates:  Hardt, R. (2014). Glyphosate it binds minerals and cuts off the production of neurotransmitters and hormones: A visual connection of the routes of diseases and cancer. Academia.edu. See:  http://www.academia.edu/5772865/GLYPHOSATE_IT_BINDS_MINERALS_AND_CUTS_OFF_THE_PRODUCTION_OF_NEUROTRANSMITTERS_AND_HORMONES….A_VISUAL_CONNECTION_OF_THE_ROUTES_OF_DISEASES_AND_CANCER

exposure to glyphosate doubled the likelihood of contracting B cell lymphoma:  Schinasi, L. & Leon, M.E. (2014). Non-Hodgkin lymphoma and occupational exposure to agricultural pesticide chemical groups and active ingredients: a systematic review and meta-analysis. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 2014, 11:4, 4449-527. See:  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24762670

Moms Across America:  Moms Across America. See:  https://www.facebook.com/MomsAcrossAmerica

Thinking Moms Revolution:  Thinking Moms Revolution. See:  https://www.facebook.com/thinkingmomsrevolution

Organic Consumers Association:  Organic Consumers Association. See: http://www.organicconsumers.org/



© Copyright 2014 Joan Rothchild Hardin. All Rights Reserved.


DISCLAIMER:  Nothing on this site or blog is intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Genetically Modified Organisms – Our Food

Updated 4/9/2016.




You’ve no doubt heard about genetically modified organisms (GMOs) but perhaps not understood why many countries have already banned them and  why so many people in the US want foods containing them to be labeled so we can make the choice to avoid eating them.
GMO stands for GENETICALLY MODIFIED ORGANISM. GE (GENETICALLY ENGINEERED) and GM (GENETICALLY MODIFIED) are other names for the process of genetically altering foods we eat – and more.




A baby zedonk - offspring of a zebra and a donkey
A baby zedonk, offspring of a zebra and a donkey = a hybrid animal
I want to point out that genetic modification is not at all the same as hybridization, which has been done on crops and food animals for centuries without posing serious damage to the soil, the environment and every living thing. Hybridization is the crossbreeding of two species, either naturally in the wild or intentionally in order to gain the most valuable attributes from each specie – for example, the mating of a male donkey and a female horse produces a mule, several different types of roses are deliberately crossbred to produce hybrid tea roses, the loganberry is a cross between the raspberry and blackberry. Hybridization IS NOT genetic engineering.
In contrast, genetic modification is the process of forcing genes from one species into another entirely unrelated species. Genetic engineering forcefully breaches the naturally occurring barriers between species.



(Information from GMO-Awareness.com, 2011-2014):
  • Corn + DNA from soil bacteria that is naturally immune to RoundUp herbicide + e. coli bacteria + soil bacteria that causes tumors in plants (allowing the plant’s cell walls to be breached) = RoundUp Ready Corn – one of several RoundUp Ready crops engineered by Monsanto. (See A Note About Monsanto below.)
  • Strawberries and tomatoes injected with fish genes to protect the fruit from freezing
  • Goats injected with spider genes to produce milk with proteins stronger than Kevlar for use in industrial products
  • Salmon genetically engineered with a growth hormone that allows them to keep growing beyond their normal size
  • Dairy cows injected with the GE hormone rBGH (also known as rBST) to increase their milk production
  • Rice injected with human genes to produce pharmaceuticals


A NOTE ABOUT MONSANTO:   GMO’s are the latest in this giant international company’s long list of dubious contributions to the world. Monsanto is also responsible for Agent Orange, PCBs, DDT, Dioxin, Aspartame, Saccharin, rBGH, rBST and Terminator Seeds that grow for only a single season, forcing farmers to buy Monsanto’s GE seeds every year instead of saving seeds from the prior harvest as they did for centuries. In 1997 Monsanto  re-branded itself from a “chemical” company to a “bio-agricultural” company. (GMO-Awareness.com, 2011-2014)






The genes injected into GMOs can be derived from bacteria, viruses, insects, humans or other animals so GMOs are also known as transgenic organisms. Since genes operate in complex ways that are still not fully understood, genetic engineering often produces unintended and damaging consequences. (GMO-Awareness.com, 2011-2014)




  • Monsanto, the international genetic engineering giant
  • Pioneer Hi-Bred International (a DuPont subsidiary
  • Syngenta
  • Dow Agrosciences (a subsidiary of Dow Chemical)
  • BASF (primarily a chemical company but rapidly expanding into biotechnology
  • Bayer Cropscience (a subsidiary of Bayer)
(Sourcewatch, 2014)


Countries that grow genetically modified crops, listed by number of acres:
Credit: Alice Krelt, NPR
Credit: Alice Krelt, NPR


Countries requiring labeling of genetically engineered foods:


GMO Labeling Worldwide. Credit: thegoodonyabar.com
GMO Labeling Worldwide. Turquoise=requires labeling of genetically engineered foods. Grey=no labeling required.
Credit: thegoodonyabar.com





Information from GMO-Awareness.com. See GMOs Defined.

According to the USDA’s report for 2013, the percentages of these crops grown in the US which have been genetically modified are:
  • Quest brand tobacco – 100%
  • Soybeans – 93%
  • Corn – 90%
  • Cotton – 90%
  • Sugar Beets – 90%
  • Canola -88%
  • Hawaiian papaya – more than 50%
In addition, the FDA has recently given its approval for these GMO crops:
  • Alfalfa – widely fed to meat and milk producing animals
  • Kentucky Bluegrass – even more widely fed to meat and milk producing animals. Kentucky Bluegrass is already an invasive grass in its natural state and will spread even more uncontrollably with genetically engineered resistance to RoundUp (Monsanto’s herbicide).
As of 2014, the FDA is still undecided about whether to grant approval for farmed salmon containing a growth hormone.
And here’s something that should give you pause:   The Environmental Protection Agency (FDA) now regulates the RoundUp Ready corn described above (90% of all corn grown in the US) as an insecticide because it has been engineered to produce its own insect killing chemical as it grows!
So when enjoying your buttered popcorn while watching a movie, remember you’re consuming an insecticide — probably coated with a butter-flavored GMO product.
GMO crops  spread with a ripple effect, a tsunami really, all through the processed foods we eat — infant formula, breads and other baked goods, tofu, catsup, tomato sauce. GM feed is given to animals who produce milk, meat and eggs — so you’re eating GMOs in your steaks, burgers, fries (potatoes and the oil they’re cooked in), ice cream, cheese, yogurt, mayonnaise, and veggie burgers  (whey protein). Even non-food items often contain GMO ingredients: soaps, detergents, cosmetics, shampoo and bubble bath – products whose ingredients get absorbed through the skin, our largest organ.


Unexpected Sources of GMO Corn
Unexpected Sources of GMO Corn



In 2005, the Grocery Manufacturers of America estimated that 75% of all processed foods in the US contain at least one genetically modified ingredient. The percentage is surely higher now, nine years later.


Source: USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service, USDA's Economic Research Service How common are genetically engineered crops?
Source: USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service, USDA’s Economic Research Service How common are genetically engineered crops?
If you’ve been following any part of the battle in the US to get mandatory GMO labels put on foods and food products containing genetically modified organisms, you already begin to grasp the political complexity of the problem.  Around the world, 64 countries already enforce the consumers’ “right to know” laws for genetically modified foods. Some have gone so far as to ban the sale of GMO foods in their borders.
So far, the Food and Drug Administration has resisted GMO labeling in the US. Monsanto and other large companies in the food industry – including the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) – have poured huge sums into influencing the FDA not to label GMO-containing products and into advertising to defeat movements in several states  endeavoring to establish mandatory GMO labeling within their borders.


These companies provide 90% of the foods sold by grocery stores
These companies provide 90% of the foods sold by grocery stores





And sign the petition.



Coke's 'healthy' drinks contain unlabeled GMOs
Some of Coke’s ‘healthier alternative’ drinks
An email today (5/29/2014) jointly from The Center for Food Safety and The Food Revolution Network asks people to boycott all Coca Cola products:

“In 2013, Coca-Cola secretly funneled more than $1.5 million dollars through the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) in order to block an initiative that would have required the labeling of genetically modified organisms (GMOs). …. Now GMO labeling initiatives are developing in 29 states including Oregon and Vermont. We think it’s time for the company to stop fighting our right to know what’s in our food.

“We’re engaging hundreds of thousands of people worldwide to spread the word about Coca-Cola’s secret campaign contributions, and encouraging people to boycott the brands they market as healthier alternatives until they change their ways.”

Coke and the company’s other sodas are made with high fructose corn syrup and sugar. Both sweeteners are derived mostly from GE crops: corn and sugar beets. Even soda consumers trying to cut calories are getting a dose of GMOs: Aspartame, the most widely used artificial sweetener, is created from genetically modified bacteria.
In addition to its soft drinks, Coca Cola produces many drink brands marketed as “healthier alternatives” – Honest Tea, Zico Coconut Water, Odwalla, Vitamin Water, Simply Orange, Fruitopia, Minute Maid, Hi-C, Peace Tea, Naked Juice and Powerade.
You can add your name to the boycott petition here. (Food Revolution Network & Center for Food Safety, 2014)



These companies oppose labeling genetically engineered foods
These companies oppose labeling genetically engineered foods







Genetic engineering involves combining two entirely unrelated species in a lab – species that could never cross breed in nature and thus require complex techniques to forcefully combine their genes into a single organism.
The mega biotech industry claims the FDA has “thoroughly evaluated” GM foods and found them to be safe. THIS CLAIM IS UNTRUE.
In the last 20 years NO studies have been performed in the US to test whether GMO products are safe for human consumption. NO American scientist has determined how much of the toxic herbicides and pesticides that have been genetically engineered into crops remains inside the plants when they’re eventually consumed as food. No long-term testing has been conducted to assess the impacts of these toxic substances on human health, animal health, soil health or the health of the environment as a whole. (GMO-Awareness.com, 2011-2014)
However, research conducted by scientists not on the payroll of the bio-tech companies into the safety of GMO food indicates that GE foods are not fit for consumption.
The American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM) has reported that animal studies have detected serious health risks associated with GE food. These include: infertility, immune problems, accelerated aging, faulty insulin regulation and changes in the GI system and other major organs. The AAEM advised physicians to tell their patients to avoid genetically engineered foods.
About 20 years ago, the FDA allowed GMOs into our food supply without requiring any labeling. Prior to their decision, the FDA’s own scientists had repeatedly warned that GE foods can create unpredictable, hard-to-detect side effects including allergies, toxins, new diseases and nutritional problems. These scientists strongly urged long-term safety studies. They were ignored.
In the intervening 20 years, independent scientific research has discovered many deleterious effects from genetically modified foods:
  • Thousands of sheep, buffalo, and goats in India died after grazing on Bt cotton plants
  • Mice eating GM corn for the long term had fewer and smaller babies
  • More than half the babies of mother rats fed GM soy died within three weeks, and were also smaller
  • Testicle cells of mice and rats on a GM soy diet underwent significant changes 
  • By the third generation, most GM soy-fed hamsters became infertile
  • Rodents fed GM corn and soy showed negative immune system responses and signs of toxicity
  • Cooked GM soy contains as much as seven times the amount of a known soy allergen as non-GMO soy
  • Soon after GM soy was introduced in the UK, soy allergies skyrocketed by 50%
  • The stomach lining of rats fed GM potatoes showed excessive cell growth, a condition that may lead to cancer.
  • Studies showed organ lesions, altered liver and pancreas cells, changed enzyme levels, etc.

See Institute for Responsible Technology: Genetically Modified Foods: Are They Safe?.

  • Immune system dysregulation (asthma, allergy and inflammation)
  • Accelerated aging
  • Infertility
  • Dysregulation of genes associated with cholesterol synthesis
  • Insulin dysregulation
  • Cell signaling dysregulation
  • Problems with protein formation
  • Altered structure and function in the liver, kidney, pancreas, spleen and GI system
  • Still births
  • Birth defects
  • Premature death

See GMO-Awareness.com: Gmo Risks


Mice born to mothers who were fed GM soy were smaller (mouse on right) and had higher mortality rates than control group mice (mouse on left). Credit: GMO-Awareness.com
Mice born to mothers who were fed GM soy were smaller (mouse on right) and had higher mortality rates than control group mice (mouse on left). Credit: GMO-Awareness.com
Unlike the FDA-required safety evaluations for new pharmaceuticals, no human clinical trials of genetically engineered foods have ever been required.



Credit: The American Academy of Environmental Medicine
Credit: The American Academy of Environmental Medicine


Independent studies have uncovered a host of toxic effects in humans, plants and soil exposed to glyphosphate – the principal ingredients in Monsanto’s widely-used herbicide RoundUp and the chemical the majority of GMO crops have been genetically engineered to withstand. See GMO-Awareness.com: GMO Risks for more information.


Crop being sprayed with pesticide
Crop being sprayed


While the GMO industry argues that glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto’s RoundUp, is minimally toxic to humans and other mammals, the findings of a rigorous study suggest otherwise. Glyphosate residues  are found in the principal foods in our Western diet – sugar, corn, soy and wheat. These crops are almost entirely grown from GMO seeds and sprayed with Monsanto’s herbicide RoundUp. From the published abstract of the study: (Samsel & Seneff, 2013)

“… glyphosate enhances the damaging effects of other food borne chemical residues and environmental toxins. Negative impact on the body is insidious and manifests slowly over time as inflammation damages cellular systems throughout the body.Consequences are most of the diseases and conditions associated with a Western diet, which include gastrointestinal disorders, obesity, diabetes, heart disease, depression, autism, infertility, cancer and Alzheimer’s disease. We explain the documented effects of glyphosate and its ability to induce disease, and we show that glyphosate is the “textbook example” of exogenous semiotic entropy: the disruption of homeostasis by environmental toxins.”

If you want to know more about the research, watch this informative, easy to understand interview with one of the study’s principal investigators, Stephanie Seneff, PhD, of MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory. The video is called The Health Dangers of Roundup (glyphosate) Herbicide. (Canty, 2013)
A major finding of this research is that glyphosate has profound negative effects on the bacteria making up our gut microbiome – where most of our immune system lives. Glyphosate destroys the beneficial bacteria in our guts, causing an enormous range of diseases.



I highly recommend finding an hour to watch this interview. It will change your understanding of how what you eat affects pretty much everything going on in your body.
The genetic engineering industry has claimed for 20 years that GMOs are the only hope for feeding the ever-increasing population worldwide. They claim that GMOs “increase yield, reduce the need for pesticides, produce drought-fighting plants and contain more nutrients”. Yet they have been unable to produce any convincing evidence that these claims are true … and considerable evidence that they are far from true.





(Mercola, 2014)


Most pigs in the US are fed a mixture of genetically engineered soy and corn. Overcoming the many obstacles the industry puts in the way of doing any research on GE foods, a large, high quality  research study has demonstrated that this diet produces severe inflammation in the pigs’ stomachs. The pigs’ diet that was tested simulated the diet most Americans consume daily – a variety of genetically engineered foods.
The findings: Compared with pigs fed a non-GMO diet, sows eating a typical diet of GE soy and corn were more than twice as likely to have severe stomach inflammation and male pigs were more than four times as likely to develop severe stomach inflammation.
Results from study of inflammation in stomachs of pigs fed a GMO diet
Results from study of inflammation in stomachs of pigs fed a GMO diet. Different levels of inflammation found, clockwise from top left: Nil (stomach of non-GMO fed pig, No. B41). Mild (stomach of non-GMO fed pig, No. B15). Moderate (stomach of GMO-fed pig, No. C34).  Severe (stomach of GMO-fed pig, No. D22).


The independent study was conducted by a respected Australian scientist, Dr Judy Carman. Dr Carman is an Adjunct Associate Professor at Flinders University in South Australia and director of the Institute of Health and Environmental Research, where she investigates outbreaks of disease. She also does research on nutritional biochemistry in metabolic regulation in relation to cancer.
The genetic engineering industry goes to enormous lengths to prevent any independent research that might lead to negative information about its products. First off, it has stringent patent laws in place to prevent researchers from obtaining any GMO seeds to study.

“Yes, there are a number of problems for anyone doing research,” Dr Carman notes. “They usually center around getting the money to be able to do the research… But you also need to get the materials to test. In this case, it’s the seeds from the genetically modified (GM) plants… But it’s very difficult to get GM seeds to test.

“If a farmer wants to buy seeds to plant in the field, the farmer has to sign a technology user agreement, which means [he]… is not allowed to do any research on those seeds, and is not allowed to give them to anyone else to do research on either.

“You basically have to find some way around that that’s legal – and we did, but it took us quite some time. Otherwise, you need to go to the industry to ask, ‘Pretty please, can we have some seeds?’ We did that as well. The conditions placed upon us getting those seeds were such that we couldn’t legitimately try and get the seeds from most companies.”

Funding is a major barrier to such research. Most of the agricultural universities – the ones that would conduct these studies – obtain their funding from the very companies that make the seeds so the universities aren’t willing to jeopardize their lucrative relationship with the industry. In Dr Carman’s case, her team was fortunate enough to obtain the funding for its research from the government of Western Australia.
Then there are the personal abuse and attempts at professional discrediting these mega-companies direct at anyone who does manage to obtain seed samples and study them. Many independent scientists have ended up losing their entire careers when they’ve revealed negative findings.
Dr Carman prepared herself for these attacks by electing to forgo receiving any salary for her work. She was also fortunate in that her team was able to obtain funding for their research from the West Australia government. Nonetheless, she has survived six separate attempts to have her removed from her various university positions over the last six years.







Much has been written about Monsanto’s control over regulating bodies in the US government. The biotech-agrobusiness mega-giant virtually has in its pocket Congress, the White House, key appointments to the USDA and the FDA, and even a Supreme Court Justices – Clarence Thomas worked as an attorney for Monsanto for four years before being appointed to the Court. This arrangement aids the passage of Monsanto-friendly legislation and protects the company’s GE products from being adequately regulated by  the USDA or FDA.


steviehaston.blogspot. com. 2013
steviehaston.blogspot. com. 2013



If you’re interested in a good summary of the longstanding cozy relationship between Monsanto and the various branches of our government, I recommend taking a look at Josh Sager’s article Monsanto Controls both the White House and the US Congress. (Sager, 2014)





“FDA    U. S. Food and Drug Administration: Promoting and Protecting Your Health

“FDA’s Role in Regulating Safety of GE Foods

“Using a science-based approach, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates foods and ingredients made from genetically engineered plants to help ensure that they are safe to eat.

“Since people have been modifying plants for thousands of years through breeding and selection, FDA uses the term “genetically engineered,” or “GE,” to distinguish plants that have been modified using modern biotechnology from those modified through traditional breeding.

“FDA regulates food from GE crops in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service is responsible for protecting agriculture from pests and disease, including making sure that all new GE plant varieties pose no pest risk to other plants. EPA regulates pesticides, including those bioengineered into food crops, to make sure that pesticides are safe for human and animal consumption and do not pose unreasonable risks of harm to human health or the environment.” ( FDA, 2014)








Either of these labels in the US indicates the product is at least 95% organic.
Either of these labels in the US indicates the product is at least 95% organic.


Assume foods made with sugar from sugar beets, soy, corn, or any of their derivatives contain GMO ingredients – unless they are certified as organic or are labeled as non-GMO.


label gmo large


I’ve written about GMOs elsewhere on this site. See also:


Much of the information in this post is  derived from a useful website called  GMO-Awareness.com. I urge you to check out that site – it’s chock full of interesting and useful information about  the genetic engineering of our food supply that is adversely affecting our health and the health of the planet with serious long-term  consequences.




Canty, K. (2013). Jeffrey Smith interviews Dr. Stephanie Seneff about Glyphosate. See video: http://vimeo.com/65914121

FDA. (5/9/2014). FDA’s Role in Regulating Safety of GE Foods. See: http://www.fda.gov/forconsumers/consumerupdates/ucm352067.htm

Food Revolution Network & Center for Food Safety.  (2014). Boycott Coca-Cola. See: http://cokeboycott.com/

GMO-Awareness.com. (2011-2014). GMOs Defined. See http://gmo-awareness.com/all-about-gmos/gmo-defined/

GMO-Awareness.com (2011-2014). GMO Risks. See http://gmo-awareness.com/all-about-gmos/gmo-risks/

Institute for Responsible Technology. (2006-2013). GMO Dangers – Genetically Modified Foods: Are They Safe? See: http://www.responsibletechnology.org/gmo-dangers

Mercola, R. (5/18/2014). Large Pig Study Reveals Significant Inflammatory Response to Genetically Engineered Foods, Mercola.com. See http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/05/18/gmo-foods-inflammation.aspx?e_cid=20140525Z1_SNL_MV_1&utm_source=snl&utm_medium=email&utm_content=mv1&utm_campaign=20140525Z1&et_cid=DM45580&et_rid=530782318

Sager, J. (2014). Monsanto Controls both the White House and the US Congress: No Matter Who Wins the Presidential Election Monsanto Benefits.  See: http://www.globalresearch.ca/monsanto-controls-both-the-white-house-and-the-us-congress/5336422

Samsel, A. & Seneff, S. (2013).  Glyphosate’s Suppression of Cytochrome P450 Enzymes and Amino Acid Biosynthesis by the Gut Microbiome: Pathways to Modern Diseases. Entropy – special issue Biosemiotic Entropy: Disorder, Disease, and Mortality,  15:4, 1416-1463. See: http://www.mdpi.com/1099-4300/15/4/1416

Sourcewatch.org. (2014). “Big 6” Pesticide and GMO Corporations. See: http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php/%22Big_6%22_Pesticide_and_GMO_Corporations



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