Maya's Happy Place

A multiple food allergy kid grows up.

The GMO Crisis Part II

So why am I so against GMOs? (If you are new to the topic of GMOs, here is a good informational page that may shock you.) Well, the first reason is I have severe soy allergies. Second, they are hidden very carefully in our foods so its almost impossible to know if your food is affected by simply reading ingredients. Monsanto is the superpower of all GMO production in our country; 75% of processed food contains GMOs. In the United States, 90% of soy is genetically modified (GM Soy).


So beautiful, yet for some of us, so deadly.

So I read in a recent email from Natural News about GMOs that 2012 brought a severe drought in the primary soy-producing states. At first, this got me pretty excited; not at the fact that families and soy farmers might be losing money but the fact that soy production might be limited–could this be the end of soy?

No. Actually, due to the billions of dollars in this industry, this is only the beginning.

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Unfortunately, most companies are chasing the almighty dollar.

This spurred me on to ask, “how do droughts affect soy production in the United States?”

I found this.

Reading through that page made me angry for a number of reasons.

For the past two weeks, my research has led me to the conclusion that we presently have very little control over what is in our food. Unless we grow and raise farm animals ourselves and plant our own seeds, there is no guarantee that the organic chicken or organic milk you are buying is completely free of GMO soy or corn. USDA Certified Organic products are allowed to contain 5% non-organic material. And if you look at this list for manufacturers and farmers, you will see many ways they can get away with not completely adhering to the rules. ESPECIALLY when it comes to organic meats and dairy.

For those of you who aren’t sensitive enough to soy to experience the many joys of being in the supposed minority of people who react to soybean oil, MSG disguised as ‘natural flavors’ or even soy-fed meats or eggs from chickens having feasted on soy feed, the physical symptoms are not pretty.

For me, it includes:

  • hives

  • eczema (especially on face and hands)

  • immediate yeast infections (yes, I am going to talk about this in a future post)

  • mood change/depression

  • severe fatigue/sleepiness

  Much research still needs to be done in the realm of food allergies, especially how GMOs have affected statistics of people with allergies and whether GMOs continue to affect people and allergies. Since there is so much to be done, I’d love to hear your opinions!
Would you like to see MSG labeled or GMOs? I know the answer is ultimately both, but which is more of a concern for someone with soy allergies? Although GMO labeling is surely more important for the future of our health and those of our children….I am not sure which issue needs action first…


6 responses to “The GMO Crisis Part II”

  1. I have a farmer friend who has an organic farmer living near him. He has caught said organic farmer using pesticides in the dead of night so that he wouldn't be seen and lose his organic status! True story! I have also heard about the things you mentioned above happening…and being greatly abused. This is why I cannot jump on the organic bandwagon. There are very few true organic companies that I trust to be honest, and that makes me very sad.In truth, I think all ingredients should be listed in plain English, including GMO and MSG, etc. I think we need to stop allowing for scientific names and junk – just be honest and stop trying to pull the wool over people's eyes. Also, I think people without allergies should stop trying to decide how much of an allergen is safe for those with allergies to consume! That's just insane to me! If it's in there, it's in there. Let the consumer decide, sheesh! If a product contains something like soybean oil, it should not be labeled as “soy-free” just because someone somewhere thinks that doesn't contain the protein…Not their call to make. It is possible, and people DO react to it. I just have a sensitivity to it, and soybean oil can be awful for me!I also have an issue with companies not knowing what their ingredients are derived from. For example, xanthan gum can be soy or corn or a few other things, and EVERY SINGLE COMPANY I ASKED had NO IDEA if their xanthan gum was soy-free or not, but some knew if it was corn-free. Seriously, that should scare you!People are also blissfully ignorant about cross reactions. Ugh! It breaks my heart to see people eat something they think is “safe” only to have issues with it and have no idea why! You know who is left feeling bad and guilty about that? The person with the allergies! So wrong!My dad is currently trying to sort out his own food allergies (he's had chronic hives for months), and it's not proving to be cut and dry. He's tested negative to some foods that he clearly (in my opinion) reacts to. The thing that gets me most worked up is that, to my knowledge, he still doesn't have an Epi! I am hoping that's because he's stubborn and didn't fill the script vs. the doc not giving him a script for one.Anyway, sorry for the long comment. 🙂 As you can see, I'm very passionate about this! Though my food issues are minimal and I can get away with slip ups now and then, I know how important to make sure that food is safe! I want people to be able to trust their food labels, and so far, that seems a long way off. 🙁

  2. Julie,Thank you soooo much for sharing this and confirming my intuition with Organic farming. Its sad that people really have no idea of how food allergies can affect somebody…even if we tell them the symptoms, they don't believe it until they see it for their own eyes or just don't care unless it affects them or someone they love. You are passionate about this and rightly hits very close to home for you in many ways. There are still so many things that need to be done to affect change that I don't even know where to begin. You need to find out if your dad was prescribed an Epi, otherwise he may need a new doc. If his hives are severe, he should have one just in case, because its definitely better safe than sorry. In my teens I went into anaphylaxis after sweating profusely in the summer heat….to this day, I don't know what the cause was, because it didn't seem to be food related. Another time was after walking two miles through the city…once again after sweating. I've had anaphylaxis four hours after eating before…so you just never know when it is going to happen.I really, really hope that the new smartphone app comes out in 17 months (I wrote about it in newest blog). If that happens, there might be more lawsuits but SO MANY lives will be saved and reactions would decrease dramatically. Life as we know it will be very different with our own personal laboratory.THAT is the only thing that can be trusted (Isn't it ALWAYS safer when we take matters into our own hands?) Hopefully it happens. Thank you again for your thoughts…we have a few unexpected mountains to climb with rocky terrain, but hopefully we will get an air-conditioned airlift ride every now and then. 😉

  3. I hear ya loud and clear!I am planning on helping my parents figure out if they are indeed avoiding my dad's triggers. I've asked to go through their cupboards, help them understand the labels and then go shopping with them. I'm sure it will not be a fun process, but I think it will help. And, don't worry, I'm going to make sure he has an EpiPen, and if I find out he wasn't prescribed one, well…They'll know how I feel about it. 🙂 I am not silent about the health of my friends and loved ones. They don't always agree and I try to be tactful, but they do know that my concern and comments come from the heart. I'm just glad that they are willing to listen. 🙂 My mom is more receptive than my dad in some ways, but he always listens and does more than even I suggest most times. I think part of that is because he is hoping these allergies will just pass or lessen or that he really doesn't need to be that strict…but deep in his heart I think he knows the truth. It's so hard to see him have to face this, but he knows we're all hear for him. 🙂 He also knows that if anyone can help him out, it's me.Anyway, thanks for writing these articles and sharing your information! They are so helpful and save me a lot of time in research or confirm what I suspected! It's so nice to have a kindred spirit here. :)Have a great weekend, Maya, and thanks again!

  4. I DO react to soybean oil. If I digest a tiny amount I am OK…if the amount is larger I get diarhea and my blood pressure can drop (it did that one time) but mostly its a stomach thing. Once I got some on my hand from a liquid vitamin and it burned / itched like crazy: had to wash it off.Guar Gum makes my face tingle.Natural Flavors can do a wide variety of things to me. It can do the face tingle, give me aching joints (and if I keep eating it day after day my joints get so bad you will swear I have advanced arthritis – can barely walk). It can swel my fingers and crack the skin there. It has given me headaches two times. Glycerin gives me a sore throat and post nasal drip.Soy Wax on veggies makes my joints ache, get stiff, hard to walk. And I am a walker: I can easily walk 6 miles or more without problems. Can walk a mile on city streets in about 12 minutes…2 miles in 25 minutes (includes stopping for traffic lights).A few times I just TOUCHED a cracker with natural flavor and got swollen fingers. Eating not required!

  5. I think they really need to stop HIDING the ingredients. If X is made from soy, it should be listed as soy! I think that's the most important thing, especially in regards to food allergies. Hiding it under all of those names could kill someone. And many don't have internet access to find out the many names. They could be sick for months and clueless as to why.And are you aware that soy is in bug spray, in car seats (think it was Ford) and as a powder coating on some rubber bands? Its showing up in lots of other places than just food, soap and make-up. I read about the rubber band one on an allergy forum: women worked in an office and kept getting a swollen arm. Turned out it was the new rubber bands her boss bought. I also read they use it as a sealent on dusty roads in the summer.And yes, I wish they would label MSG and GMO. I guess GMO would be more important. I guess people who react to MSG know the names it hides under like natural flavors but which crops are GMO? Corm, Soy and wheat, yes, but are regular veggies? Are there tomato, brocolli, lettuce GMO versions??? I do recall reading that soy allergies skyrocketed when GMO soy went on the market and one doctor online thinks that the Celiac / gluten thing is related to GMO wheat.

  6. Anonymous! I was just about to resend out this post and just saw your comments! I must've read them when I had a bunch and they must've gotten hidden by the internet gremlins. So I profusely apologize. I am horrified to see what you go through even by touching anything with natural flavors…all of that is exactly true…the car seat foam, the bug spray…so many uses for soy its sickening. It doesn't help that we live in the 2nd highest producing soy country in the world. I do feel your pain…except I get the severe skin stuff, so we would make a fun team…its amazing how nothing is done about things like this until it affects at least 5-10% of the the peanut allergy. I wouldn't doubt that in ten years, soy allergy becomes just as prevalent as peanut allergy. Its all because of the GMOs and now that Agent Orange is approved, who knows what other allergies or sensitivities might pop up. Once again, I am so sorry for not seeing this sooner and I'm sending you giant hugs and a big thank you for sharing your experiences and strength with us. Thank you for stopping by and I hope to hear from you again soon!

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