Updated: Dec 23, 2018
I love having a garden. Very few things can compare to eating freshly picked fruits or vegetables out of the garden. We see the term “farm fresh” on so many things. Sounds great, right? It does, but there are hidden dangers that are lurking on your farm fresh food. A lot of times food is sprayed so pests won’t bother it. This can be dangerous to the bugs (which is why they stay away from that food).
Among these sprays are pesticides. Pesticides are insecticides, fungicides and herbicides. Pesticides are poisons used to kill bugs. When fruits and vegetables are sprayed with pesticides, they kill the bugs trying to eat them, but we also consume the pesticides sprayed on the produce. What does this do to our bodies? Why should we be more aware of this?
A few things happen with the use of pesticides. The first thing that happens is the pesticides are killing harmless creatures that are necessary for our ecosystem balance. Among these creatures are pollinators, such as bees and butterflies, that essentially are responsible for pollinating the flowers so they will produce the fruits and vegetables we eat. Aside from killing off these pollinators, over time the the insects become immune to the pesticide, which then makes the manufactures create stronger pesticides, and apply more chemicals to be effective.
These pesticides are sprayed onto the produce we consume. Unfortunately, they are not able to be washed off of foods. Most fruit and vegetable skins are permeable and allow the pesticides to be absorbed into the edible part. The Environmental Working Group has put together a list of the twelve most “dirty” fruits and vegetables according to the level of pesticide residue on them. They update this list each year so it’s worth looking it up regularly. (1)
The important take away from GMO foods
Genetically modified organisms (GMO) are known as conventional foods, or non-organic. They’re typically the cheaper, more reasonably priced items. Here is the thing with GMO foods, these foods are not labeled as to how they have been genetically modified. They can have anything from pesticides to foreign species put right into their DNA. This is important because there is really no way of knowing if something has been genetically modified unless it is labeled. It is possible that corn, for example, could be genetically modified to contain a pesticide that would make it so an insect would eat it and die. This corn is often time referred to as “insect-protected.” This doesn’t sound like it is a good thing for us to be consuming... even in tiny amounts.
I want to point out that organic produce doesn’t mean it is not sprayed. Organic produce can be sprayed with pesticides, it is required to not be a synthetic pesticide. Unfortunately, the only way to really know what is on your food is to grow it yourself or become friends with an organic farmer and ask a million questions!
But it’s such a trace amount...
Trace amounts are tiny, almost minuscule amounts that are barely detectable, right?! Correct! However, these trace amounts add up and do damage. I recently saw a video that had an analogy about trace amounts. This analogy had a glass of water, anyone could safely drink this clean glass of water. A toothpick was placed into a pile of dog poop and then placed into the glass of water. The glass of water looked the same - it was impossible to tell from looking at it that it was any different, but we know that there are tiny pieces of dog poop that contaminated the water from the toothpick. Doing that, made it a glass of water no one would want to drink. (2)
A researcher, who was defending the use of glyphosate (a common pesticide), kept repeating himself stating glyphosate is safe to ingest, “it’s not dangerous to humans.” He also stated, “you can drink a whole quart and it won’t hurt you” was later asked to drink some glyphosate because he stated it is safe to ingest, to which he responded, “no, I’m not an idiot.” He actually got upset and walked out of the interview. (3)
Did you know the pesticide atrazine has been linked to sex changes in frogs? This chemical in pesticides are chemically altering male frogs to lack testosterone. It even changes one in ten male frogs into females. If this is happening to frogs, I can only imagine what pesticides are doing to humans. (4)
Another danger of pesticides is the vapor they give off. This vapor is being inhaled. A study by UC Berkeley found a link between the poor respiratory health (asthma) and the use of elemental sulphur on farms near by. Elemental sulphur is a common fungicide used in California. (5)
I have yet to see a study as to the long term effects pesticide consumption could and will have on the human body with the exposure we have currently. This is a real health concern for everyone. Until recently, it has not been spoken about much. A man recently fought Monsanto and won nearly $300 million dollars because he was able to link his heal issues to the glyphosate he had used. (6)
Since this trial, many people have began speaking of the dangers of glyphosate in food. Food in the form children’s cereals and granola to formula. For two years the FDA has been collecting data on the amounts of pesticide residue on food. Sadly, most food has tested positive for it, with some even testing above the allowable amount. (7)
Another important thing to keep in mind is that Monsanto/Bayer has not been up front and done testing to find out if glyphosate has also found in vaccines. This is something else to keep in mind when you’re trying to minimalize pesticide exposure. (8)
My goal is to urge you to look deeper into the dangers of pesticides and take an active role in combating your exposure. This is the way to regain the fight for your health. Be well.
(1) EWG 2018 list https://www.ewg.org/…/out-now-ewg-s-2018-shopper-s-guide-pe…
© 2018 by Virginians for Medical Freedom