The science is not settled on GMOs

science is not settled on gmos
I have a lot of issues with the way the term “science” has been used to push GMO agenda over the last few years.

Skeptical about GMOs? You’re anti-science. You’re now lumped in with climate change deniers. But is that fair?

Hardly so.

“Science” is used to prove GMOs are safe, but it’s the very same “science” showing how little we actually know. I think it should be re-phrased as:

“The science that can be linked, in one way or another, to Monsanto is settled. GMOs are safe.”

Independent research? Not so much.

Science from government and corporate funded studies should not hold more value than independently researched science, in fact, much the opposite. The conflicts of interest in science are immense.

According to a cellular biologist (referenced here), “Funding, much of it from the companies that sell GM seeds, heavily favors researchers who are exploring ways to further the use of genetic modification in agriculture. He says that biologists who point out health or other risks associated with GM crops—who merely report or defend experimental findings that imply there may be risks—find themselves the focus of vicious attacks on their credibility, which leads scientists who see problems with GM foods to keep quiet.”

“Science” is being used as a term to justify the use of GMOs, by belittling people and labeling them anti-science. But to refer to the term science, as if it’s one thing and not something immensely complex, is anti-science in itself. It’s anti-science is say that science is settled. The science is never settled, we should always be pursuing further information and evaluating risks and benefits to everything, always. You can cherry pick science all day long and get whatever result you’d like… painting science with a broad brush as a reason to be for or against something is misleading.

Just because a short term study looking at a specific number of factors doesn’t find anything egregious about GMOs does not mean they are safe. We don’t know their true impact and we probably won’t for a long time. This “it’s safe until proven otherwise” mentality needs to stop. It’s UNSAFE until proven otherwise.

I’m tired of being an experiment.

canola field gmo

Research into GMOs is in relative infancy, there are many health risks that we have yet to fully understand, and it’s naive to think otherwise. I prefer to err on the side of caution. For me as a consumer, besides a minor dent in the pocketbook, there are no actual benefits to buying GMO (eating real food makes that dent much smaller, which I’ll discuss later). I confidently believe that feeding the world is simply a myth perpetuated by big agriculture. I’m not the only one who thinks that, here’s a report from the Environmental Working Group on how GMOs don’t feed the world and in fact, helping small farmers is the right approach.

Most of Europe doesn’t want anything to do with GMOs. A lot of times when I look at health decisions I step outside my American box and think about the rest of the world. Most of the world is skeptical, yet in American culture you’re supposed to just accept them because science says so? There’s enough science in Europe to warrant debate, but why not here?

But don’t trust me, let’s look at some science (from Europe, of course).

According to a consensus statement of 300 independent scientists published in the Journal, Environmental Sciences Europe:

“This statement clearly demonstrates that the claimed consensus on GMO safety does not exist outside of the above depicted internal circle of stakeholders. The health, environment, and agriculture authorities of most nations recognize publicly that no blanket statement about the safety of all GMOs is possible and that they must be assessed on a ‘case-by-case’ basis. Moreover, the claim that it does exist – which continues to be pushed in the above listed circles – is misleading and misrepresents or outright ignores the currently available scientific evidence and the broad diversity of scientific opinions among scientists on this issue. The claim further encourages a climate of complacency that could lead to a lack of regulatory and scientific rigour and appropriate caution, potentially endangering the health of humans, animals, and the environment.”


Their conclusion?

  • There is no consensus on GM food safety
  • There are no epidemiological studies investigating potential effects of GM food consumption on human health
  • Claims that scientific and governmental bodies endorse GMO safety are exaggerated or inaccurate
  • List of several hundred studies that purportedly show GMOs are safe do not show GM food safety “Examination of the studies listed reveals that many do not provide evidence of GM food safety and, in fact, some provide evidence of a lack of safety.”
  • There is no consensus on the environmental risks of GM crops
  • International agreements show widespread recognition of risks posed by GM foods and crops

The safety of GMOs is misleading and misrepresented. And I’m not even getting into the fact that glyphosate is used alongside GMOs, which California has recently decided to label as “possibly carcinogenic.” Glyphosate is reason enough to avoid GMOs, but alas, that’s for another day.

So here’s where a real food diet comes in. The debate as to the safety of GMO’s will rarely affect you if you don’t eat processed foods. What foods are most commonly GMO? Corn, soybean, canola, sugar, and cotton.

Yup, we don’t eat those foods. (but we do eat zucchini, yellow squash and papaya, so watch out there and buy organic if you can afford it)

Eat real food, buy organic if you can afford it, and be on your way.

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By |2018-01-25T18:00:05+00:00July 25th, 2017|Nourish|3 Comments

About the Author:

Hi, I'm Ania. I'm a natural living, primal advocating mom of a crazy toddler.


  1. Mindy July 25, 2017 at 4:20 am - Reply

    Thank you for writing this. People get so confused with all the ‘science’ out there ‘proving or disproving’ when actually we dont even know what’s accurate! But you are right, something should be unsafe until proven otherwise and there’s not much to worry about if you are eating real, whole foods anyway.

  2. Sharon Schierling July 28, 2017 at 5:44 pm - Reply

    I am with you when it comes to the question of GMOs, I am afraid we will be reading about their harmful effects 20 years from now and trying to stem some horrible side effect from them. Great blog.

  3. Lynne July 31, 2017 at 3:44 pm - Reply

    Thanks for the time and effort you put into this. Great information.

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