by Elizabeth Renter
October 6, 2013
A conscientious shopper always
reads labels when shopping for groceries.
But if you are in the
United States, those labels won’t tell you if there are genetically
modified ingredients inside. Instead, you have to be a bit of a food
detective, digging for the information yourself because the
government and food producers alike don’t think you have a right to
So how can one health-conscious
consumer find out if their food contains GMOs?
Below you will see 5
tips on how to avoid GMO foods in the grocery store.
There are some definitive truths within
our food industry that can help you determine which foods have GMOs
and which do not.
There are also many myths circulating about the
presence of genetically modified organisms and ingredients.
How to Avoid GMO Foods
Here is a hard and fast list of
recommendations and tips:
Assume all non-organic corn,
soy, cottonseed, and canola ingredients are GMO
In the U.S., these plants are
likely all grown using genetically modified seeds.
Basically, if it’s a food in the center aisles of your
supermarket - where all of the processed garbage is - then
it likely contains one or more of these ingredients.
If you need something made with
corn or soy, be sure to seek out certified organic products,
which according to the certification process, cannot contain
This is an important tip on how
Stay away from artificial
Aspartame is made using GM bacterial strains of E. coli.
In addition, aspartame carries a whole host of
negative side effects worth steering clear of.
Beware of “Invisible GM
Ingredients lists are
often difficult to decipher, and some of these
foreign-sounding ingredients are derived from genetically
modified organisms (GMOs).
Some of the more common products
Choose certified organic dairy
Conventional dairy products are
taken from cattle raised with rBGH, a growth hormone likely
containing genetically modified components. Fortunately,
there are organic and rBGH-free dairy products out there;
they are also becoming more prevalent.
Don’t trust the produce stickers
and PLU codes on fruits and vegetables
There are many myths regarding
the small coded stickers on produce - that these codes can
help identify GMO fruits and vegetables.
But, while many
people are convinced a 5-digit code beginning with an 8
identifies a GMO, such identification
optional and, as of
yet, no produce providers have chosen to be so forthcoming.
The one you can trust is a 5-digit code starting with a 9 -
that identifies organic fruits and vegetables and by their
classification as certified organic, they are non-GMO.
For some specific foods, check the
Comprehensive List of GMO Products.
Avoiding genetically modified
ingredients in the U.S. takes someone seriously dedicated to keeping
themselves and their family as healthy as possible; it also takes a
bit of work, though will become easier.