Organic Food & GMOs Explained: This One Is Better

Organic Food vs GMOs

Organic food and GMOs are both food labels that are getting a lot of attention today. People are asking if organic food is healthier than GMOs, or if GMOs are a better option between the two.

Because everyone is aware that the food we consume determines our health, here is a comprehensive comparison of organic food and GMOs.

For many years, we have been taught that organic foods are healthier for the body. Foods under this label are also good for the environment, but the huge difference in price point makes GMO foods better.

If the price is not a big deal for you, organic food products are your best option. Learn the difference between non-GMO, GMO, and organic food labels below.

GMO: Explained

GMO or genetically modified organisms are exactly what they sound like.

This food label includes genetically modified foods in which particular molecules are removed or added from the DNA to improve the color, size, taste, and so much more.

Genetic engineers will insert a gene into a particular food organism that it doesn’t otherwise have.

Usually, these genes come from bacteria and viruses and are modified to change the way that food grows.

Examples include unusually large blueberries or strawberries that you can find at the food store.

These products are mostly genetically engineered to result in a larger size and a sweeter fruit.

GMO foods are usually developed to give a higher nutritional value to all consumers and to make the products more resistant to pests.

To help you learn more about the advantages of GMO foods, check out the following:

  • GMO fruits have a sweeter taste.

  • They provide higher nutritional value and come with a wide array of improved attributes to give more health benefits to consumers.

  • They are cheaper to produce than organic foods.

  • Because they are genetically modified, they are more resistant to pests and weeds.

Myths About GMOs

One of the myths about GMO foods is that they are dangerous to consume. In fact, the alteration of a product’s genetic makeup has been a topic of debate for many years.

GMO crops that contain genomes obtained from the DNA of other organisms have permanently changed the agricultural industry.

A variety of crops are genetically engineered, with genes that can protect them from weeds and pests as well as certain plant viruses.

Another myth that people believe about GMO foods is that they have a particular effect on the environment.

People worry that the genetic changes can affect the larger natural environment, or that genetically modified organisms suppress the natural biodiversity of one location.

This myth has only a small degree of truth. In fact, the genetic modification transfers from crops to local varieties, and farmers rely greatly on the same crop types that leave them vulnerable to disease.

According to a 2016 study, farmers who did not adopt herbicide-resistant genetically modified strains used less herbicide as compared to farmers who raised GM soybeans.

This means that there is much more to learn about GMO crops.

Disadvantages of GMO Foods

All unnatural things come with particular downsides. Here are some of the disadvantages of GMO crops:

  • Despite the resistance of GMO crops to weeds and pests, superweeds still exist. These are weeds that can resist the effect of normal herbicides.

  • A variety of plants produce bacterial toxins that lead to resistant bugs.

  • In some cases, the modified chemicals in food products can lead to cancer.

  • People are consuming the toxins and harmful bacteria found in GMO foods.

  • GMO foods can cause allergic reactions in some individuals.

Should I Avoid GMO Foods?

GMOs are an important topic for discussion. Whether or not you should avoid them depends on two factors: the environment and your health.

GMO crops result in the increased use of chemical pesticides because the plants are more resistant to these chemicals.

This ensures that our ecosystem and agricultural societies are more vulnerable to these pesticides and herbicides, leading to more marine and air pollution.

Little work has been done on the security of GMOs in terms of health.

While some people believe that eating unhealthy foods may be dangerous, further research must be carried out before any specific claims are made.

However, generally speaking, GMO products do not cause much damage, unlike what critics say.

In 2016, a study showed that GMOs can reduce the number of pesticides required to grow maize as compared to crops that did not utilize GM strains of maize engineered to withstand pests.

Is Organic Food Healthier?

At the grocery store, consumers are given the option to purchase conventionally produced food or its organic equivalent, which is often pricier.

The difference between these two options is closely regulated. The products must meet the standards set by associations and governments for food manufacturers to mark their foods as organic.

The USDA, or U.S. Department of Agriculture, specifies food as organic if it has been demonstrated to defend natural resources, maintain biodiversity, and use only approved chemicals.

Every product that is marked as “organic” must be free from GMOs in the U.S. and Canada.

According to that description, organic foods should not have pesticides or artificial fertilizers added to them for about three years before they are harvested.

But just because a plant aligns with the concept of organic does not mean that it is completely free from the fertilizer residue.

What Does “Organic Foods” Mean?

Organic foods are foods that are free of dangerous chemicals, pesticides, artificial herbicides, antibiotics, medication residues, and neurotoxins.

They are almost always more costly than GMO products because they must be processed with more care and they must be approved.

Before use, pesticides also need to be organically licensed, which pushes the price even higher.

Organic foods have a 50% higher cost compared to regular foods. So, the question is: Should you buy organic foods over GMOs?

Most people prefer organic products over GMOs due to the following advantages:

  • Organic crops do not utilize hexane, which is a form of neurotoxin used in most vegetable oils, such as corn, canola, and soybean.

  • Organic crops do not use pesticides.

  • Animals that are organically raised do not consume any antibiotics. For this reason, the meat they produce doesn’t have any harmful toxins in it.

  • Organic crops are not grown with Roundup. This is an herbicide that is commonly utilized to kill the weeds that surrounds a crop.

  • Unlike other foods, organic meats do not contain any hormones. Most people express issues about meats that contain growth hormones. It is said that growth hormones can increase the probability of cardiovascular disease.

Disadvantages of Organic Foods

While following a strictly organic diet may seem like a healthier alternative, there are some downsides to it:

  • Not all grocery stores have a wide range of organic produce. It may be a better option to go to the local farmers market rather than a food store.

  • Compared to non-GMO and GMO foods, organic foods are more expensive.

  • Organic goods are easily spoiled. They have a shorter shelf life than genetically modified foods, so they must be consumed right after they are purchased.

  • According to research, organic food has no major nutritional benefit compared to other foods under different food labels.

  • Because organic foods do not contain antibiotics, they have higher levels of bacteria. They also contain little to no pesticides as well as herbicides, so consuming such foods is associated with a higher risk of e-Coli bacteria found in the digestive system.

GMO vs Organic Food

There are no chemicals, fertilizers, solvents, or additives in organic foods. This increases plants’ and animals’ natural survival, making organic foods much healthier for the environment.

It also helps to prevent livestock from developing antibacterial resistance and chemical contamination as pesticides are absorbed with the ground.

Organic and non-GMO foods have many similarities but they are not exactly the same.

“Organic foods” means that the ingredients in particular food products have been verified by the Non-GMO Project as containing no GMO materials.

This is done by testing every component entering the final product. Companies and their providers are inspected annually and receive the non-GMO approval stamp if they comply with Non-GMO Project requirements.

The slight difference in the organic label is that while “non-GMO” prohibits the use of GMO-containing herbicides, this does not mean they have to be organically grown.

In fact, they can be raised using traditional, non-organic methods.

The bottom line is that non-GMO and organic foods are similar in the sense that both categories require extensive testing to ensure that there is no genetically modified content in the crop or its development.

What Food Label Should I Choose?

When it comes to what can be classified as organic, GMO, or non-GMO, the USDA (or United States Department of Agriculture) has strict rules.

Non-GMO foods have not been raised with GMOs, but they are not necessarily organic.

The most heavily monitored label is “organic food.” Buying produce with organic and non-GMO labels is the safest choice in terms of general health and minimal toxins.

Non-GMO and organic foods are incredibly similar. However, the only reason why some companies do not switch to organic is that it costs hundreds of thousands of dollars to get certified.

On the other hand, non-GMO foods are nearly identical to organic. The only difference is that it costs much less to get certified.

The Truth Behind Organic Foods

When health and safety are your main priorities, choosing unprocessed organic food whenever possible is the best course of action.

This is because some organic foods may contain harmful chemicals. Examples include:

Vegetable Oils

Metabolic disease and enhanced inflammation are linked to vegetable oils like canola oil, soybean oil, corn oil, cottonseed oil, and safflower oil.

If you find any of these vegetable oils in the organic food ingredients list, it is safer to look for a healthier alternative that does not contain these pro-inflammatory oils.

Hidden MSG

Although monosodium glutamate or MSG cannot be utilized in organic foods, several other compounds of free glutamic acid may be in organic foods.

More so, avoid purchasing organic products that contain any of these ingredients:

  • Hydrolyzed soy protein
  • Textured protein
  • Autolyzed yeast extract
  • Yeast extract

Such chemicals are used to add flavor to the food. However, they are also considered excitotoxins, which means they cause harm.

As a result, your neuron receptors can become over-stimulated. This can lead to health detriments like skin problems, headaches, and water retention.

The Verdict

If you want to become a healthier person, you should choose what you eat very carefully.

In the end, GMO and organic foods are not bad options, as they both provide their own sets of benefits that may suit your needs.

If you prefer products that come with a lot of nutrients and top-notch taste, you must choose GMO foods.

Most of the crops that fall under this food label have a better taste, larger size, and more vitamins and nutrients.

Many beliefs about GMO and organic foods have only a small degree of truth behind them.

The bottom line is that consuming vegetables and fruits can provide a lot of benefits to your body, whether they are under the organic or GMO food label.

With this clear comparison between the two food labels, you are now aware of their benefits and disadvantages, which can lead you to better purchasing decisions.

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