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Genetically Modified Organisms Essay

1713 words - 7 pages

Did you know that Genetically Modified Organisms are found in sixty to eighty percent of processed foods and that the United States Food and Drug Administration does not test any of these foods beforehand to see if they are safe to consume? (Wohlers 73). Genetically Modified Organisms are defined as organisms whose DNA has been changed in a way that would not naturally occur. The purpose of developing these genetically modified organisms was to improve produce by creating an increased tolerance to disease. While it is great to want to keep diseases out of our foods, the science of altering our food has no guarantees that it will actually protect against disease and has the potential to actually damage our bodies, environment, and economy. There are sixty-two major countries that require genetically modified foods to be labeled, unfortunately the United States is not one of them (Wohlers 73). Most of these countries have deemed that genetically modified organisms have a much higher risk than benefit, because something could so easily go wrong, such as an allergic reaction to whatever was pumped into the food. Luckily, Americans have begun to be more conscious of what they are eating and how it negatively affects their bodies and economy. Therefore, a debate has been sparked on whether genetically modified organisms should be required to be labeled as such when you purchase food.
There are many negative consequences of allowing genetically modified organisms in our food, the most obvious ones having to deal with the harm it can cause to your body. Allowing genetically modified organisms into your food can allow for toxins to be added to your food. For example, workers in Washington sprayed to protect against gypsy moths and as a result over five-hundred people reported flu-like symptoms that were linked back to the spraying (Smith). This could have easily been prevented if safety testing would have been done before the products were ever put out for purchase to make sure they were safe for consumption. A review of nineteen separate studies which fed genetically modified corn and soy to rats found that it led to liver and kidney problems (Smith). If rats can experience such negative side effects from genetically modified food, it is scary to think how humans bodies could also be affected.
Genetically modified food can also cause allergic reactions. Many people are unknowingly eating foods that have genetically modified organisms pumped into them. These people are unaware that they are allergic to what has been pumped into it until after they have already digested it. A study proved that people who have been identified as having a nut allergy experienced an allergic reaction to soybeans that had been enhanced using a gene from Brazil nuts (Wohlers 75). Allergic reactions can be mild, with someone experiencing symptoms such as itching or watery eyes or they can be quite severe, causing someone to have symptoms such as difficulty breathing,...

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