Food for Thought : Ways to Avoid GMOs

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So, after my longwinded, whoops,  I mean informative, GMO post last week, I promised a short list of ways to avoid GMO’s.

Therefore, without further adieu:



The most commonly modified foods are:


(drumroll please)


  • Canola Oil
  • Soy
  • Corn (Corn, Corn Syrup, High Fructose Corn Syrup)
  • Zucchini & Summer Squash
  • Papaya’s (mostly from Hawaii)
  • Sugar Beets


As if those items weren’t enough, there are also GMO derived additives such as:

Aspartame, Ascorbic Acid, Sodium Ascorbate, Vitamin C, Citric Acid, Natural or Artificial Flavors, Lactic Acid, Maltodextrin or Yeast Products.


After I read this list I was like- PHEW!  I know I don’t eat a lot of these products. 

Sugar Beets?  I don’t even know what they look like.  And Papaya?  I don’t even know how to cut one… (I know, I could watch a you tube video…. But, honestly, I really don’t know what I am missing…so why bother)

I was wrong… again. 

A product that simply lists ‘sugar’ as an ingredient is probably using sugar derived from sugar beets.  (PS – it is believed that GMO sugar beet production is directly related to the decrease in the bee and butterfly population.  No bueno.)


Soy & Canola Oil are two of the most widely used oils – from cookies to raisins to potato chips.    They turn up just about everywhere, so it pays to read the labels.  


Dang you- Betty Crocker Sugar Cookie Mix!


Now, I am making an assumption - if an ingredient is listed on your food label, it is most likely a GMO.  Why?   Because they are the cheaper crop.  (Many are even subsidized by the government).  And what is always the bottom line?  Money! 

Besides, look at the numbers below – and that was as of 2010.  The odds are likely to be GMO.


Image: Nature’s Path Organic Foods

Since labeling is not required, the best way to avoid GMOs is to go Organic.  I know they can be tough to find, cost prohibitive or you are married to someone like my husband. 


You can also look for the Non-GMO Project label which has been popping up. 

They are a non-profit organization committed to providing non-GMO choices.  I see these choices in the decently-stocked Organic/Natural section of my  local Stop & Shop.  

Last note – when buying fresh produce, you can check the fruits and vegetables PLU code. 

  • Ones that start with a 4 are conventionally grown with the use of pesticides. 
  • Ones that begin with an 8 are genetically modified
  • Ones that begin with a 9 are organically grown.


As G I Joe used to say, “Knowing is Half the Battle”. 


I didn’t think She-Ra’s battle cry of ‘By the Honor of Greyskull’ was appropriate.  Unless, of course, Hordak is buying genetically modified zucchini.


(Hmmm… maybe this post was still too long….)


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