Doctor's Note

Make sure to see the next two follow-up videos (can subscribe for free here): Is Monsanto’s Roundup Pesticide Glyphosate Safe? and GMO Soy and Breast Cancer.

What about the other GMO component of farm animal feed, Bt corn? See my last video Are GMOs Safe? The Case of Bt Corn

Why do we subsidize animal feed more than fruits and vegetables? Check out my video Taxpayer Subsidies for Unhealthy Foods.

What happens when food industries self-regulate? See, for example:

If you haven't yet, you can subscribe to my videos for free by clicking here.

To post comments or questions into our discussion board, first log into Disqus with your NutritionFacts.org account or with one of the accepted social media logins. Click on Login to choose a login method. Click here for help.

  • veganchrisuk

    Slightly off topic – I’ve been searching health food stores in the UK for organically grown black soy beans – I found a place in Scotland that sells them, but when I checked today they were no longer available. I was undecided as to buy them originally as they were from China, and I’d read many articles relating to contamination of Chinese soy beans, even those organically grown.

    Can anyone recommend a reliable supplier for the UK, and/or enlighten me re the safety of Chinese organic soy beans – thanks – Chris….

  • elsie blanche

    Off topic (sorry!), but hope Dr. Greger can explore this issue further, and others here.

    In the words of Dr. McDougall:

    “A healthy diet allows the defense systems “to work to its full capacity” removing antigens that enter the system and removing immune-complexes from the blood. Components of the rich American diet are known to impair its function. Vegetable oils, including those of the omega-3 and omega-6 variety, are particularly strong suppressors of the immune system. This immune suppressing quality of oils (for example, fish oil and primrose oil) has been used to suppress the pain and inflammation of arthritis, but like too many drug therapies the ultimate outcome may not be best for the patient. Suppression of the immune system prevents it from doing its work of removing invading foreign proteins.

    Dr. McDougall is stating that even Omega 3 oils (he mentions fish oil, but I assuming DHA vegan omega 3 as well) actually can “impair its (immune system) to work to its full capacity. Is this the reason omega 3 feel so good for inflammation and other stuff, sort of like a band-aid or drug that takes away the pain but also has a dark side as well, as Dr. McDougall states concern that what these suppressing oils actually are doing is suppressing our immune system, weakening its ability in the moment. Geez, couldn’t this open us up to certain diseases, viruses, bacteria, autoimmune reactions? All everyone ever (it seems) talks about is the positive qualities of omega 3’s/oil, supplements. but is there also a potential negative side to this that should be explored. Is this the reason some people actually get sick, run down, after taking omega 3 supplements (even vegan)?

    • Adrien

      Why not posting this on a Omega 3/Oil related video so ? People are coming here and the first two huge post are completely off topics..

      • elsie blanche

        I agree, off topic, and I am not asking for it to be explored today, but the reality is is that “today” is current, and this gets into the view of Dr. Greger now, not later, so hopefully he can “sleep” on this issue I have brought to him, and consider responding with his view in a future time, video or blog. But I think it is hugely relevant, as many people indulge in these omega 3’s (even DHA vegan) because it makes their pain go away, and the level of intake to achieve this might actually be weakening the human’s innate immune sysem/defense systems.

        • http://nutritionfacts.org/ Michael Greger M.D.

          Thanks for your comment Elsie, as per our Comment Etiquette off-topic posts are fine.

        • Darryl

          Long chain ω-3 (EPA moreso than DHA) fats are generally thought to reduce inflammatory signalling because they compete with the ω-6 fat arachidonic acid for conversion to eicosanoid signaling molecules. The ω-3 derived eicosanoids are less inflammatory than tne ω-6 derived eicosanoids. Modern diets commonly include far more arachidonic acid, mostly from grain fed animal products, than either the diet of our distant ancestors consuming more plant-based diets, or even relatively recent ancestors consuming smaller amounts of grass-fed animal products. Argably long-chain ω-3 supplements mostly just dilute the high arachidonic acid status in the general population somewhat closer to past levels.

          As overactivity of the innate immune system is implicated in many chronic diseases (including heart disease, cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, obesity, and diabetes) as well as aging, many believe we can benefit from less inflammatory signalling. We also benefit from modern hygiene, wound care, and antibiotics (for the time), so perhaps an innate immune system tuned for the more common and infectious trauma (from falls or saber-tooth tiger attack) is now overkill.

          In general, trials of omega-3 supplements (mostly fish oil) have found no effect on overall mortality (1, 2), though benefits with certain conditions (like non-Alzheimer’s dementa appear. This indicates at least that no net adverse effect is seen from omega-3 supplements in the general population. We also lack studies of long-term health effects of DHA/EPA supplements in those consuming plant based (and hence much lower in arachidonic acid) diets.

          Personally, I take a high-dose algal EPA+DHA pill daily, as I’m strongly convinced that an overactive innate immune system is at the root of many chronic diseases, and hope to benefit more than those in the general population due to my much lower dietary intake of arachidonic acid. However, it is a speculative move, as the final word, as with so many health issues, is unlikely to be written during my lifetime.

          • elsie blanche

            Do the saturated fats found densely in palm oil concern you greatly, as far as even minimal consumption, and by minimal consumption being less than 25 percent of the daily RDA for saturated fat? Are these sort of AA fats, in red palm oil (and coconut oil), detrimental in even small amounts….amounts that contain less than the 25 percent of the overall RDA for fat intake?

            And thanks for sharing you intent with taking the vegan DHA/EPA. Maybe everyone’s immune system reacts differently to such things. Things like flax seed seem to suppress mine, and I get sick (I do think this might have something to do with the high amount of polyunsaturated fats in flax, and for me these PUFA’s might cause problems). Same thing with vitamin D. That little pill of D seems to open me up to illnesses I otherwise usually do not get. Such a paradox from what I’ve read about D’s reported benefits.

          • Darryl

            There’s negligible arachidonic acid in any vegetable oil. However the 12-16 carbon long saturated fats (>40% of palm oil and >65% of coconut oil) are known to increase LDL cholesterol via inhibiting expression of liver LDL receptors. Saturated fats also increase postprandial inflammation, oxidative stress and endothelial dysfunction, likely through directly activatinginnate immune response or impairing intestinal barrier function and increasing influx of endotoxins from the gut, or both.

            But your question is about very small doses, which in the case of the red palm oil, may have merit given its high concentration and bioavailabiliity of carotenes and vitamin E. Compared to red palm oil, coconut oil is a poor source of micronutrients and more atherogenic in animal studies. An acquaintaince who is a regular commenter here swears by a tsp of red palm oil as a vehicle for his morning cocoa, cinnamon and turmeric. A tsp of red palm oil would have 2.4 g of saturated fat, about 1% of daily energy. I personally wouldn’t sweat this, as there are enough interesting things going on with red palm oil (though not coconut oil) that may counteract any detrimental effects from the fat content, and you aren’t exactly deep frying in it.

            For context though, we know that vascular diseases are rare in populations that consume traditional diets low-in animal products, added sugars, and added fats, so that only 3-4% of energy is from saturated fats. On the other hand vascular diseases are a leading killer in Western countries where those dietary risk factors are higher and 9-14% of energy is from saturated fats. However, as the recent pro-SFA media articles remind us, there’s not a huge difference in risk within the Western range that can be attributed to the SFA content. To me this suggests that 1) many macronutrient exchanges in typical Western diets offer little health benefit compared to SFAs (eg, added sugars), and 2) perhaps SFAs present their greatest risk increment in the 4-9% of daily energy range. This sort of logistic curve is very common in biological models. Unfortunately, its very difficult to test health outcomes in the 4-9% energy from SFAs range, as relatively few very low-fat plant based dieters are available to form prospective cohorts, and the pilot studies of Pritikin, Drs. Ornish and Esselstyn were either small, short in duration, or didn’t offer randomized controls (though their results speak very loudly).

          • Toxins

            Thanks Darryl. As always, your posts are greatly appreciated.

          • elsie blanche

            Interesting what you said about the red palm oil: “….red palm oil as a vehicle to improve absorption of his morning cocoa powder, cinnamon and turmeric…” It makes me wonder if the red palm oil actually creates some permeability issues in the gut and or blood brain barrier (certain fats known to do this, right?), and the good side of this is that the cocoa powder and turmeric infiltrate places in the body that they otherwise would have never had access to. So maybe red palm creates “leaks”, portals to transport certain nutrients that have now found a “loophole” in the body. Just an idea/theory, but who knows.

            And thanks for your response.

          • Darryl

            That’s a really perceptive question which I wish I knew the answer to.

            Health promoting flavonoids found in fruits and vegetables have poor bioavailability, so many methods have been devised to make them more bioavailable, often involving fat emulsions or liposomes that either fuse with intestinal cells or bypass tight junctions between them and enter via the intestinal lymphatic system. Both emusions and saturated fats appear to also increase permeability to endotoxins. And curiously, oral bioavailability of the important flavonoid quercetin is associated with endotoxin bioavailability. So it seems possible that both are entering by non-canonical route (lymphatic system?), and attempts to widen this “loophole” for the phytochemicals we want could also widen it for microbial detritus we don’t want.

          • rrjames

            I have a powerful (1500 watt, approx 2 horsepower) which the manufacturer claims ruptures the cell walls of foods. Thus increasing bioavailability says the manufacturer, Sounds good, but does it?

    • Pat

      I’d like to read the whole article or view the video where Dr. McDougall made theses comments. Could you please post the web address where I can find them, Elsie? Thanks.

    • Wegan

      Does that make turmeric bad? I don’t know if what he says there makes sense. I don’t agree with a lot of what Dr McDougall says. Just because people can survive on potatoes doesn’t mean it should be the main part of your diet. Non- starchy vegetables as a side dish? 1-4 fruits per day? How are you going to get all the variety of antioxidants we learn about here? Here is what Dr Greger said about fruit:
      “As far as I can tell, the best available science says that the more fruit the better.”
      http://nutritionfacts.org/questions/how-much-fruit-is-safe-to-consume/

  • Adrien

    The supressed study I talked about in the previous video about GMO can be found here : http://www.reporterre.net/IMG/pdf/_22long_term_toxicity._22-fct_sept_2012.pdf

    It is the first study ever studying the effect of Roundup® – the real chemical composition not just Glyphosate – and that is very important because testing Glyphosate only for toxicity do not show result. But Roundup® is not just Glyphosate. I hope this is understand, because it is two different composition with two different result..

    http://rue89.nouvelobs.com/sites/news/files/assets/image/2012/09/3-rats-seralini.jpg

    my previous post here :
    http://nutritionfacts.org/video/are-gmos-safe-the-case-of-bt-corn/#comment-1685788470
    http://nutritionfacts.org/video/orange-aromatherapy-for-anxiety/#comment-1251855603

    • largelytrue

      This study was retracted and if you want to understand why (even if you conclude the were nefarious pressures at work) you can’t simply source 10 facts from Seralini’s own anti-GMO website.

      Here’s at least one other reference on the web, to help get the ball rolling over whether the study was repressed or not:

      http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0278691512005637

      • Adrien

        It is interesting why so much ink is flowing when the conclusion are bad news for monsanto and when huge money and power can be lost. But all the little flawed study that do not last long enough to prove anything are used to push the commercialisation of GMO crop. Then everybody is shutting their mouth. Give me a break..

        I just can’t simply resume anything in a post here on NutritionFacts.org that why I just use this link (I didn’t know this website before by the way), you need to watch hour long lecture on this subject from people inside to understand the subject. If you are able to understand French I can send it to you.

        We are led to beleive that it is a simple petition – pushing by monsanto affiliated scientist – that made the removal of the study but it’s not. It’s only when Richard Goodman came to the editorial of the paper that the study was remove.. A coincidence ? Don’t be fool. It’s just like for the meat and dairy industry. Do you really think that Monsanto do not have any biologist in his pocket ? NO… KIDDING.. !

        You should be ashame and revolted to see such censoreship of true and honest scientific work. It’s remind me Colin Campbell and the dairy industry.. You should read his book “Whole” there is a great chapter about the influence of money in the world of science.

        “He and his team stand by their results, and allege that the retraction derives from the journal’s editorial appointment of biologist Richard Goodman, who previously worked for biotechnology giant Monsanto for seven years.”
        http://www.nature.com/news/study-linking-gm-maize-to-rat-tumours-is-retracted-1.14268

        By the way, all the raw data from his study are available.

        • largelytrue

          I didn’t claim that I think the study should have been retracted or that the processes involved behind that decision were good. The suggestion about Goodman is present in one of the editorial letters at the publishing journal’s site, which I recommended. I didn’t claim that science is free from industry pressure. I also didn’t claim that I knew why exactly the journal decided to retract the paper — or on that issue, are you perhaps criticizing me for not being nigh-absolutely certain?

          However, I’ll also point out that even if the retraction was nefarious and the journal is corrupt or laden with double standards, it doesn’t mean that the study is actually of high quality compared with its peers and it doesn’t mean that the researchers approached their research (and their preparation for publication) with the greatest of scientific integrity. Its ~24 month window makes for a longer term view of the effects in rat, maybe (I’m not strongly familiar with the literature), but in rats that evidently develop high rates of tumors when studies are conducted over the long term under otherwise normal conditions (ad-libitum feeding is evidently an important factor), you need to be fairly careful in how you interpret your quantitative data. Are these citations of the background tumor rate inaccurate or unrepresentative of the literature in your view, and why:

          http://cancerres.aacrjournals.org/content/33/11/2768 (45% overall with double incidents for females as compared with males)
          http://ac.els-cdn.com/S0278691512008022/1-s2.0-S0278691512008022-main.pdf?_tid=2b31f1d8-6a8d-11e4 (mammary tumor rate of 25% before 2 years have elapsed in each of the control groups studied)

          For the two links above, I’m pulling from one of the letters to the editor that used references to back its arguments:
          http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0278691512008022

          Thanks for another link, though Nature’s news coverage of the retraction was not very deep.

          • jazzfeed

            My understanding is that biotech “studies” use the exact same strain of “rats that evidently develop high rates of tumors when studies are
            conducted over the long term under otherwise normal conditions.” Therefore, that factor is automatically controlled for.

          • largelytrue

            Not so if you are not presenting any statistical tests at all in your article and your control groups are only 10 rats of each sex, and both of these are things that industry actually does in their contemporary studies.

            The possibility of that random fluctuations caused a spurious result is not something that’s “automatically controlled for” because scientists favoring a different hypothesis ran experiments that had the same problem, anyway. You are thinking about control in scientific experimentation in entirely the wrong way.

        • largelytrue

          Can you point me to “all the raw data” because quite superficially I’m seeing comments like this:

          “A line in this piece originally read, “In republishing the paper,
          Séralini and his team released their raw data, for which they deserve
          tremendous credit.” That’s not quite right. It turns out that the
          Séralini group did not release all the raw data from the study. For
          instance, his team took blood samples at 1, 2, 3, 6, 9, 12, 15, 18, 21,
          and 24 months but only released the data for month 15. They released the
          tumor and mortality data for each group of rats, but not for the
          individual rats — which makes it impossible to test for in-group
          variation (e.g. are we talking about one rat with seven tumors, or seven
          rats with one tumor each?). -Nathanael Johnson at Grist”

          http://weedcontrolfreaks.com/2014/07/seralini-rat-study-revisited/

          This would be an easy claim to test if you can confirm the location of the raw data, which that webpage suggests is this supplement to their second publication and nothing more: http://www.enveurope.com/content/26/1/14/additional

    • Merio

      Thanks for sharing… if i remember correctly the first time the paper pass the peer reviewed and then was retracted… even the second journal is a peer reviewed one ?
      I’m suspicious of GMOs but i really want to have heavy evidence about its risks.

      • jazzfeed

        1. Ten Scientific Studies Show that Genetically Modified Food Can Be Harmful To Human Health
        http://www.globalresearch.ca/ten-scientific-studies-proving-gmos-can-be-harmful-to-human-health/5377054

        2. (another) Study Shows Dramatic Correlation Between GMO and 22 Diseases
        http://www.alternet.org/personal-health/its-worse-imagined-study-shows-dramatic-correlation-between-gmos-and-22-diseases

        This study points out research that has shown, “glyphosate disrupts the ability of animals, including humans, to detoxify xenobiotics. This means that exposures to the numerous chemicals in food and the environment, such as endocrine disrupting chemicals and carcinogens, could be causing levels of damage that would not occur if the body were able to detoxify them.”

        One of the graphs presented at the above link is copied here, relating the frequency of diabetes (the yellow bars) over time to the increasing rate of glyphosate application and to increasing GMO production. The green line is the rate diabetes would have been predicted to develop had glyphosate not been incorporated into the food chain.

        • Merio

          Thanks for the reply, i hope to look at these studies in future.

    • Pat

      Poor little rats. Their lives are short, brutish and nasty.

  • Paula

    Uh, monsanto. My sister-in-law is a microbiologist for Monsanto. I always joke that she has drunk the kook-aide because she thinks they are doing god’s work. She is 100% sincere, it’s scary.
    But you’re right. These herbicides are killing the environment. My s-in-law does feel bad about the bees though. She said and I quote “they’re screwed.”

    • Merio

      So i think we’re screwed too…

      • Paula

        Well, her argument is that honey bees aren’t native here, so oh well.

        http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/12/061211220927.htm

        • Merio

          Thanks for the reply.

        • jazzfeed

          What does she eat? Bee pollination is responsible for a minimum of 1/3 of our agricultural products, and it might be 2/3. She has no argument.

          Canadian Beekeepers Sue Bayer and Syngenta for $450M over Neonicotinoid Pesticides
          http://www.organicconsumers.org/articles/article_30862.cfm

          http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/canadian-beekeepers-sue-bayer-and-syngenta-over-neonicotinoid-pesticides-1.2754441

          The proposed class action lawsuit ($450M now, started at $400M) was filed in the Ontario Superior Court on behalf of all Canadian beekeepers by Sun Parlor Honey Ltd. and Munro Honey, two of Ontario’s largest honey producers, the Ontario Beekeepers Association announced Wednesday.
          “The goal is to stop the use of the neonicotinoids to stop the harm to the bees and the beekeepers,” said Paula Lombardi, a lawyer with Ontario-based law firm Siskinds LLP, which is handling the case.
          The lawsuit alleges that Bayer Cropscience Inc. and Syngenta Canada Inc. and their parent companies were negligent in their design, manufacture, sale and distribution of neonicotinoid pesticides, specifically those containing imidacloprid, clothianidin and thiomethoxam.

  • Merio

    I don’t know, but how much of the GMO production goes to animals ? I think that if animal foods will become a little part of our diet, GMO products will fall off the market as well.

    • Darryl

      Presently, the vast majority goes to animal feed and ethanol production. GM sweet corn and wheat never got off the ground, and even for soy, niche (and hence uneconomic for GMO modification) cultivars are used for edamane and often soymilk/tofu production.

      However, eat anything with one of the zillions of corn wet milling products; soy, canola, and cottonseed oils, sugar beet sugar, or unblemished papayas, and its likely a GM crop was involved. In many cases, the actual processing (to cornstarch, refined oil, or granulated sugar) tends to remove less desirable compounds. However, most of these highly refined ingredients shouldn’t be a significant part of any ideal healthy diet.

      Universal adoption of a whole plant based diet would largely eliminate most current GM products.

      • Merio

        Thanks… it seems that one diet (WFPB) could solve many issues of our world.

      • Mike Quinoa

        Darryl, are frozen sweet corn kernels then generally non-GM?

        • Darryl

          GM sweet corn exists, but its been a market flop for Monsanto. 2-3% of sweet corn on the market in the U.S., though around 35% on the Canadian market.

  • Darryl

    The absence of glyphosate on the conventional / non-organic crops indicates that glyphosate does naturally degrade in the environment and overspray/runoff into adjacent fields isn’t a common issue. The question then becomes are the residual levels of glyphosate from late season applications meaningful for human health, and how do these health effects compare with those of residual levels of herbicides used in conventional/non-GMO (2,4-D, atrazine, etc) and organic agriculture.

    There’s also the issue of whether we accept the tradeoff of some glyphosate residue in return for fewer tilled acres and less soil erosion from deep plowing. No-till agriculture may make the difference between arable land and dust in a few decades, in some areas. Obviously, the best solution would be to move to plant based diets, and also away from food-based fuels like corn, ethanol, to reduce the acreage impact of humanity and permit sustainable more organic practices with near current populations.

    • Ray Lapan-Love

      If we are to truly talk about the “best solution” the first step would be to eliminate ag subsidies in all of the advanced nations. Then food products would rise in value and that would then warrant investment in countries that desperately need to develop their ag infrastructure. Nations such as Kenya for example have suitable soil and weather conditions for growing cotton but… the value of cotton has been held down via subsidies, and so, the development of the necessary infrastructure is not profitable. There is also vast amounts of land in tropical countries that can now be made fertile with biochar, and in many cases there is more than ample water available, but most tropical nations lack the financial resources to invest accordingly. But if food were being produced more locally, some of the cost increases would be offset by lower shipping costs.

      Naturally though, there are those who argue that higher food prices will do more harm than good. However, higher food prices would also alleviate the obesity and other diet-related disease problems plaguing the advanced nations, while providing more opportunities for poor folks who should have the option of producing ag products. Then too, higher food prices would make higher wages more necessary and at a time when too much wealth has been ‘trickling’ upward to begin with. Ultimately then, nearly all of humanities fixable problems can be linked to the fact that MNCs simply have too much influence over governments. But as things stand, a corn producing conglomerate in Iowa can undercut a Mexican peasant who delivers his crop to a local market on the back of a donkey. But that is only possible because the MNC pays little or no taxes in the US or in Mexico, and the ag subsidies can provide not only crop insurance, but also a guarantee of of ROI and that guarantee keeps interest rates low. So, in the end, Wall Streeters gain, ‘again’, while the poor lose. (this policy also keeps the world’s labor markets over-saturated with those who can’t compete, and who can’t compete with the same competitors who benefit from low labor costs)

      • largelytrue

        “Then too, higher food prices would make higher wages more necessary and
        at a time when too much wealth has been ‘trickling’ upward to begin with”

        Can you explain this at all? Do you mean higher wages in the food sector specifically, or higher wages generally. Because if Jane is paying Bob extra in

        • Ray Lapan-Love

          Sure. Higher prices, whether for food or whatever, can be allowed for by lower profits that in turn allow for higher wages. But of course that is rarely considered, even though productivity gains have been going to employers, as opposed to going to employees, for decades.

          Naturally, as the common argument goes, higher food prices hurt the poor. The truth is though, higher food prices also create opportunities for the poor as they become producers. Thus, the poor have options… and that forces employers to pay more for labor as some workers leave the labor market. Then, large producers profit less as the increased competition from ex-workers limits the large producers ability to pass on the cost increases to the consumer. And, as a larger percentage of the poor produce their own food, they are no longer subjected to the cost increases as consumers. In broad terms then, the laws of supply and demand play a central role in labor markets, and by limiting the options of workers, labor markets serve the interests of those who benefit from cheap labor. A great example of how these dynamics affect values, is that of how difficult it was for the USA to compete with Britain during the 19th century. Then, the British ‘subject’ lacked the options of the American citizen, most of which were in the ag sector, and US manufacturers could not therefore compete with their British counterparts in regards to labor costs. Anyone doubting this only need to study the transcripts from the debates in Congress in regards to tariffs and etc (the Tariff Act of 1816 is especially interesting because it stands out as the beginning of the rift between the North and the South).

          • wideEyedPupil

            yeah there’s no certainty the higher prices would translate to higher wages in anything that resembled more than the status quo. that would require a social shift (especially in the Capital of finance capitalism, USA) that is beyond just food economics. It’s generally labelled ‘commie’ in USA but is more like social democracies as exists in most European nations for various periods (less so UK).

    • guest

      I so agree with this. Once studies are done (properly) to assess whether or not the direct application from the residue on food to humans is harmful or not, then we still should do as you say and try to reduce the amount of land needed for agriculture. No more plants for food-animals would help immensely, as would no more plants for fuel like you said. I also think we should start utilizing a lot of the up and coming hydroponics that allow plants to be grown in any basement or building.

    • Susan

      Perhaps the study was done before Monsanto upped the amount of glyphosate on conventionally grown fruits and vegetables. Now the amounts of herbicides have increased 200 fold according to the paper,

      Compositional differences in soybeans on the market: Glyphosate accumulates in Roundup Ready GM soybeans.

      There is a lot of excellent and very readable information in the beginning of the paper, which is located at:
      http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0308814613019201 The soy beans studied were from Iowa, USA.

      I’m eating a plant based diet, but now Monsanto has petitioned the Obama Administration and won the de-regulation of Russet potatoes from regulation. Certain Russets will be genetically modified and may show up in your grocery or supermarket. This will make the food shortage greater as more and more people seek out organically grown crops. Go to: sustainablepulse.com/2014/11/08/food-safety-experts-slam-usda-gm-potato-approval/#.VGZgdclZjWA

    • Susan

      Glyphosate does NOT naturally degrade. It is found in our drinking water, I surface waters, even in precipitation.

      It may mean that the study gathered data before crops were sprayed again for “ripening” in conventional agriculture. One of the articles by Bohn et al attests to that fact.

      Organic agriculture does not allow the use of toxic herbicides such as Roundup, 2,4-D, Glufosinate, and others. Any pesticides used in organic have to be approved by the National Organic Standards Board first. The law was written to avoid lobbying of the chemical interests, something on which the Obama Administration repeatedly ignores and is taken to court by the Center for Food Safety. CFS wins in most cases which keeps organic healthier than conventional foods, also called Natural by the USDA’s Tom Vilsack, a Monsanto shill, and Michael Taylor (Monsanto VP) and Food Czar at the FDA for the Obama Administration. This administration is full of Monsanto lobbyists, many left over from the administration of Bush-Cheney, according to P.E.E.R.

      Organic consumers have had problems with the Secretary of Agriculture stacking the NOSB with corporations which were once small organic farms, but grew large and were bought out by mega corporations. For example, Earthbound Farms was sold to White Wave for $600 million in December 2013 and now sits on the National Organic Standards Board repeatedly making policy decisions on synthetic ingredients in organic food. Are its decisions made in behalf of the organic food industry, organic consumers, or its new owners? White Wave was a spinoff of Dean Foods, who repeatedly allowed GM ingredients in some of its organic foods under the Bush-Cheney Administration. For more acquisitions of the organic food industry by non-organic and questionable corporations, see: http://www.cornucopia.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/Organic-chart-feb-2014.jpg

      Last year, USDA Secretary undermined the Rule of the Law, and jumped over the NOSB, talking instead to agro-chemical lobbyists and added questionable inert ingredients to the National List. The NOSB at their next public meeting showed great anger, according to the watchdog group, the Cornucopia Institute. Check out there web sight. Important information may be there.

      For those who still eat or drink soy beverages even though a vast amount is herbicide resistant and Roundup has been identified in non-organic seeds at what Monsanto determined to be “Extreme” before they upped the amount used now on crops. http://www.cornucopia.org/2009/05/soy-report-and-scorecard/

      There is only one soy product that I repeatedly buy. But I have been mad ill twice because of contamination. I don’t drink the soy milk, but use it to wet my cereal. Small is safer. None is better still. However, the soy milk I buy does not contain carrageenan which is a big plus, Because that also makes me sick.
      http://www.cornucopia.org/shopping-guide-to-avoiding-organic-foods-with-carrageenan/
      My husband set up my raised bed, but it is not in a sunny location due to his arrogance. “The vegetables will have to adapt he claims, but won’t listen to reason or read what experts say. So whenever I can afford it again, some trees have to be trimmed big time money will come out of my pocket.

  • Jeff and Karen

    While Dr. Greger is free to not evaluate genetically engineered organisms with regard to areas “outside the area of my expertise” there is an important reason for the discussion to include areas that may be outside of his expertise. One such area (which in fact does not require much expertise) revolves around a very simple question – “Do I have the right not to be experimented on”? With that in mind please read the following by Noam Chomsky:

    The principle is that the powerful and the privileged have to be able to do what they want

    In general the principle of the World Trade Organization, the primary principle, and related treaties, is that sovereignty and democratic rights have to be subordinated to the rights of investors. In practice that means the rights of the huge immortal persons, the private tyrannies to which people must be subordinated. These are among the issues that led to the remarkable events in Seattle. But in some ways, a lot of ways, the conflict between popular sovereignty and private power was illuminated more sharply a couple of months after Seattle, in Montreal, where an ambiguous settlement was reached on the so-called “biosafety protocol.” There the issue was very clearly drawn. Quoting the New York Times, a compromise was reached “after intense negotiations that often pitted the United States against almost everyone else” over what’s called “the precautionary principle.” What’s that? Well the chief negotiator for the European Union described it this way: “Countries must be able to have the freedom, the sovereign right, to take precautionary measures with regard” to genetically altered seed, microbes, animals, crops that they fear might be harmful. The United States, however, insisted on World Trade Organization rules. Those rules are that an import can be banned only on the basis of scientific evidence.

    Notice what’s at stake here. The question that’s at stake is whether people have the right to refuse to be experimental subjects. So, to personalize it, suppose the biology department at the university were to walk in and tell you, “You folks have to be experimental subjects in an experiment we’re carrying out, where we’re going to stick electrodes in your brain and see what happens. You can refuse, but only if you provide scientific evidence that it’s going to harm you.” Usually you can’t provide scientific evidence. The question is, do you have a right to refuse? Under World Trade Organization rules, you don’t. You have to be experimental subjects. It’s a form of what Edward Herman has called “producer sovereignty.” The producer reigns; consumers have to somehow defend themselves. That works domestically, too, as he pointed out. It’s not the responsibility, say, of chemical and pesticide industries to prove that what they’re putting into the environment is safe. It’s the responsibility of the public to prove scientifically that it’s unsafe, and they have to do this through underfunded public agencies that are susceptible to industry influence through lobbying and other pressures.

    • What’s it about

      It’s all about control isn’t it? They control food, water, land, air, medical care, education, information, etc. Just keep the masses distracted/addicted with amusements and any side issue while we do what we want. And if it eliminates some so what.

      • Ray Lapan-Love

        Yes, but also its about recruiting soldiers, and this aspect is paramount. The Viet Nam conflict showed that when the average citizen has options he or she is reluctant to ‘serve’. So, it is much more deliberate than just controlling via amusements. For example, the Immigration Act of 1965 increased immigration levels and the US has since allowed in more immigrants than ever before, and that isn’t including the illegal immigrants who have also been accommodated, and in an unprecedented way, anywhere. This during a period when the Triffin Dilemma made it obvious that the US must choose between continuing to promote its currency as the world reserve currency, or it must relinquish its powerhouse status as a manufacturer/exporter. In other words, an understanding of the Triffin Dilemma, combined with an honest assessment of what the reserve currency status is worth (the potential for global domination and a ‘get out of jail free card’ every time the global economy falters), and especially when the dollars’ value received extensive support from the petro-fix, made military backing of the status itself…vital. So, the control is vastly more comprehensive than what most folks are able to understand. But in part, this is what ‘governing’ is. There is always the ‘us or them’ question. But those who believe that ‘freedom’ is what they are fighting for, well…they are the ‘controlled’.

      • jazzfeed

        Yes, that’s What’s it about. Now what to do about what it’s about? Find a way and pursue it. Passivity is acquiescence – that’s why this nightmare has progressed so far. They are aggressive, relentless, mendacious and rapacious. In other words, the biotech industry is a wolf and we are lambs. Find a phone booth and change your clothes.

      • Susan

        Yes! It is about control by the biotech companies of countries all over the world, and the countries are controlling the public. Presumably, he/she who controls the best, will get the most healthy foods. In the USA, the Obama Administration has been killing endangered species to either grow GM crops on public lands, while opening National Parks to hunting wildlife for those wanting more options to live animals. They are destroying animal families because the GOP and some Democrats don’t trust eating the GMO gritty crap they are selling to the American people.

        The flu vaccination and most of the medicines are now becoming genetically modified, herbs are being sought and changed from healthy to potentially toxic, antibiotic resistant bacteria in livestock are rampant, and to “protect both the American people and the biotech-pesticide giants, the USDA is requiring “pasteurization of organic everything, nuts, seeds, etc. to cook out the antibiotic resistant bacteria.

        We cannot possibly grow all our own food, and even it we could pollen moves quickly even without bees and pollinators. It moves on the wind taking the foreign dna along for a ride.
        It’s eliminating more than some of our food. Monsanto plans to change the dna of every plant on the Planet Earth and they are on their way all over the world! The bigger they become, the smaller we become in our power to take back our food supply.

        I bought an Organic Mattress, because the Memory Foam mattresses to me reeked of petrochemical herbicides. It cost me a bundle, but I’m trying to protect my health the best I can. Now the USDA, FDA (with Monsanto at the helm as “Food Czar” and EPA are stamping out new foods, fibers, trees, and pesticides as fast as the biotech pesticide industry wants them.
        Monsanto is now using glyphosate, dicamba and 2,4-D both contaminated with dioxins, and the latter contaminated with the most toxic form of dioxin, 2,3,7,8-TCDD such as came from Agent Orange, chemical plant explosions in Italy and across the USA, and wherever chemical companies are manufacturing organochlorinated pesticides, PVC plastics and ther chlorinated plastics. Even some plastics are now GM.
        I’m glad I’m 72, but I worry about our daughter and our 3 year old grandson who are doing the best they can to raise a healthy family. Even their pets our mine are eating organic cat and dog food. This means No GM corn or soy as ingredients or fed to livestock. Unfortunately, it’s raining Roundup all over Earth, wherever this toxic agriculture prevails.

        • Susan

          Oh, forgot to mention, another herbicide used by Monsanto, Glufosinate.
          According to the editor of the Journal for Pesticide Reform, a publication for the Northwest Coalition for Alternatves to Pesticides:
          “Glufosinate kills plants by inhibiting the enzyme glutamine synthetase, an enzyme also found in animals including humans. Glufosinate chemically resembles glutamine, a molecule used to transmit nerve impulses in the brain. Neurotoxic symptoms observed in laboratory animals following ingestion, dermal exposure, or inhalation of glufosinate include convulsions, diarrhea, aggressiveness, and disequilibrium.

          Dogs appear to be the laboratory animal most sensitive to glufosinate. Ingestion of glufosinate for two weeks caused heart and circulatory failure resulting in death. Exposure of pregnant laboratory animals to glufosinate caused an increase in premature delivery, miscarriages, the number of dead fetuses, and arrested development of fetal kidneys.

          Concentrations of a glufosinate-containing herbicide of less than one part per million cause mortality of oyster and clam larvae.

          Several species of disease-causing fungi are resistant to glufosinate, while a beneficial fungi that parasitizes disease-causing fungi is very susceptible to glufosinate. This means that use of glufosinate can have “important microbiological consequences.”

          Full article at: http://www.pesticide.org/get-the-facts/pesticide-factsheets/factsheets/glufosinate

          This newsletter was published in 1996. However, between then and 2007 during the Bush-Cheney administration, all studies at the EPA library that corporations did not like were removed and the library was closed. Not only did they disappear from the EPA library, but the Library of Congress, the National Institute for Environmental Health Sciences at the National Institutes of Health, and the Library of Medicine data bases, but even some disappeared from the World Health Organization’s Institute for the Research on Cancer taken by the corporations who fund the Republican Party.

          For more information, go to P.E.E.R. and search for EPA Library closures. Peer said some of the files that disappeared were updated information on the pesticides to be used with biotechnology. Perhaps, this is the reason the US government rubberstamps pesticide renewals. Without studies,which were abolished by Bush and Cheney, there are no regulations/ no controls to better protect public health…only corporate welfare.

      • Dana Laguna

        You are very correct. This is the big picture… and I hope more people, here in U.S., & around the world, start reading, learning, and caring. Our average people, citizens are at greater and greater risk from a group of inhumanely greedy corporate & government “people”. I am encouraged & enjoying all the very intelligent, knowledgeable folks and comments posted here. Thanks to you all. I’ve learned much in discovering this wonderful site tonight. And thank you to Dr. Greger & the NF team.

    • wideEyedPupil

      can you please link or reference the source @Jeff and Karen? Chomsky has written over 50 books (is it >100) and interview countless times but i’d like to be able to sue and reference this quote.

  • RonB

    Dear Dr. Greger,

    I came into a research: “Saturated fats and heart disease link ‘unproven'” at the Daily Telegraph. The link is here:
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/behindtheheadlines/news/2014-03-18-saturated-fats-and-heart-disease-link-unproven/

    I was wondering whether you (or someone) can address this issue. Is there a large study that states clearly that saturated fat and large omega 6 to 3 ratio are linked to heart disease? (in some way)

    Many thanks

    • http://Oozemon.com Coacervate

      This won’t answer your questions but might help. Eating a whole food diet means no extracted oil. If you do that and keep calories from fat to less than 10% from fat, then you reap benefit. That is the mountain. If the meta analysis was done on people eating the usual high fat foods typically found in western diets then everyone is in the same boat and differences become indistinguishable.

      On top of the mountain is a molehill: If you make further adjustment by eating high omega3 foods or supplement then there may be benefit from this fine tuning of ratios…did you see Darryl’s comment below?

    • http://nutritionfacts.org/ Michael Greger M.D.

      Great question! I have videos coming out on just that topic–can’t wait for you to see them!

    • Tom Goff

      Pending Dr Greger’s videos, you may find it useful to read the critique of this study (and a rather similar previous one published in 2010) which can be found here:http://healthylongevity.blogspot.com/2014/03/saturated-fat-heart-disease-meta-analysis.html

  • jejoben

    Dear Dr. Greger: Of course that the pesticides introduce with the modify genes are damaging, but we do not know all the changes in the metabolism of the plants with the introduction of this genes and how this changes can affect humans.

  • john galt

    I am afraid for you, Doctor. Please be careful, very careful. U r on thin ice.

  • bob

    An article with some interesting links:

    http://www.alternet.org/food/dangerous-truth-about-gmos-monsanto-desperate-hide

    Dr. Avila Vazquez blamed the biotech agricultural corporations for placing their profits over the public’s health:

    “The tobacco companies denied the link between smoking and cancer, and took
    decades to recognize the truth. The biotech and agrochemical
    corporations are the same as the tobacco industry; they lie and favor
    business over the health of the population.”

    The truth in a nutshell….a cover for a healthy food.

    note: the tobacco companies recognized the truth…but kept it from the population?

  • http://www.eesm.com AdrianO

    The 2014 source cited “T Bohn, M Cuhra, T Traavik, M Sanden, J Fagan, R Primicerio. Compositional differences in soybeans on the market: glyphosate accumulates in Roundup Ready GM soybeans. Food Chem. 2014 Jun 15;153:207-15.” has come under criticism.

    http://www.skeptiforum.org/a-critical-review-of-compositional-differences-in-soybeans-on-the-market-glyphosate-accumulates-in-roundup-ready-gm-soybeans-bohn-t-et-al-2014/

    Moreover others are saying that a 70 Kg person would have to eat 42 Kgs of GMO Soy to get enough glyphosphane to breach the EPA safely guidelines.

    thanks, Adrian

  • Plantstrongdoc M.D.

    Is this time to give up? Just heard that a vascular surgeon on our local hospital is on Atkins diet !? I also know an orthopedic surgeon who believes in high animal protein diet (well he is an orthopedic surgeon, so I dont know what to expect :-) )
    My conclusion: The way to a healthy eating society is NOT through M.D.`s. Regarding health most doctors are morons….they know a lot about treating disease, but nothing about staying healthy…..

    • Karl Young

      Yes, and I assume you can attest to how much nutritional education MD’s get in med school (any ?)

      • Plantstrongdoc M.D.

        Unfortunately, almost nothing….

    • Susan

      Before I fractured my spine in 2012, I ate organic chicken, turkey, and wild salmon. But my bad cholesterol was out of control as well as other health damage occurred whenever I ate meat. Now the pain has disappeared and I’m getting stronger. No pain, low cholesterol levels, no heart murmur as long as I avoid food from animals. For me, it’s worth AVOIDING the severe side effects of eating potentially toxic food and then NEEDING GM pharms with really bad side effects and more pain. Even though I ate only organic, the meat itself was toxic to my body. Everything hurts when the spine is fractured. It does not hurt when I eat organic produce and beans and quinoa. I can heal my bones faster by eating collards, beans, nuts or seeds (sparingly) and a colorful diet full of fiber, And because I can absorb the nutrients better, I break bones less often. To avoid toxic biologics is a win-win for me!

      • Plantstrongdoc M.D.

        Thanks for sharing!

      • Charzie

        Susan I so agree with you. I got “educated” a while after getting diagnosed with diabetes, and within 3 weeks after going WFPB I was no longer needing medication, but that was just the beginning! A short time later the severe arthritis, numerous back issues and fibromyalgia I had suffered from and eventually resorted to taking narcotics for, began to improve, my “worn out” knees that caused me to use a cane started functioning again and in about six months I was off all meds, eventually lost half my body weight and started biking! It’s been nothing short of a miracle to finally find the right way to eat!

  • Jean

    Food for thought
    Genetically modified organisms are ancient, technologically speaking. There’s a new technology on the scene, adding a twist to the already complicated conversation about GMOs in our food: synthetic biology.

    http://www.npr.org/blogs/thesalt/2014/10/03/353024980/gmos-are-old-hat-synthetically-modified-food-is-the-new-frontier?utm_medium=RSS&utm_campaign=food

  • Joel Santos

    Hi Dr. Greger. Given the latest science, are you still standing by your earlier statement that the benefits of eating fruits and vegetables even if non organic and pesticide ridden far outweighs the risks? I love eating cheap frozen strawberries. They are unlabelled so I think they’re conventionally grown. Thanks!

    • Toxins

      “A new study calculated that if half the U.S. population ate just one more serving of conventional fruits and vegetables, 20,000 cases of cancer could be prevented. At the same time the added pesticide consumption could cause up to 10 extra cancer cases. So by eating conventional produce we may get a tiny bump in cancer risk, but that’s more than compensated by the dramatic drop in risk that accompanies whole food plant consumption. Even if all we had to eat was the most contaminated produce the benefits would far outweigh any risks. ”
      http://nutritionfacts.org/2013/06/25/apple-peels-turn-on-anticancer-genes/

  • Susan

    There are numerous scientific studies done around the world on genetically modified glyphosate (herbicide) resistant soybeans. You can get the names of the studies and a summary at gmoevidence.com. The papers have found Roundup (labeled ingredient, glyphosate) causes birth defects in FARM animals including piglets http://www.gmoevidence.com/dr-kru%CC%88ger-glyphosate-increases-birth-defects-in-pigs/ and humans. With the humans: “In 2002, two years after the first big harvests of RR soy in the country (of Argentina), residents and doctors in soy producing areas began reporting serious health effects from glyphosate spraying, including high rates of birth defects as well as infertility, stillbirths, miscarriages, and cancers.”

    I could not find the 2002 issue of Fr. Peter’s Environmental Notes online, the citation for this quote, which is at: http://www.gmoevidence.com/argentina-birth-defects-from-gm-soy/

    Glyphosate has been identified as an endocrine disruptor:
    Toxicology. 2009 Aug 21;262(3):184-91. doi: 10.1016/j.tox.2009.06.006. Epub 2009 Jun 17.
    Glyphosate-based herbicides are toxic and endocrine disruptors in human cell lines.
    Gasnier C1, Dumont C, Benachour N, Clair E, Chagnon MC, Séralini GE.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19539684

    Some studies suggest glyphosate causes breast cancer _ check at PubMed.

    As fast as the scientific studies are being pumped out, the US government ignores the studies and deregulates more genetically modified grit! As of October 17, 2014, three varieties of Russet potatoes used in French fries and animal feed will be GM and released into the marketplace with a rubber stamp.
    http://sustainablepulse.com/2014/11/08/food-safety-experts-slam-usda-gm-potato-approval/#.VGZgdclZjWA

  • Kevin Folta

    That’s gly-pho-sate, no “glyphosphate”. The USDA reports the presence of residues measured and they occasionally find up to 20 mg/kg. However, is rare. The paper by Bohn et al contains several authors that always find a problem with GM crops. Not to question their data, but it is good to note that they are the only folks on the planet that find such things and other independent labs don’t repeat their results. It contrasts slightly with my opening comment, as you can find some glyphosate if you look hard enough. However, this stuff is about as safe as you can get for an ag chemical, and the amounts found are biologically irrelevant based on everything we know about it.

  • HereHere

    I don’t think this is a just an issue about pesticide issues. The DNA of the food is changed significantly. You are what you eat, and when tomatoes are modified with frog DNA to resist the effects of cold/freezing during transport and storage in the winter, well, it has to make you wonder. There is certainly concern of genetically modifed fish eggs that my country has approved and exported. That can change the world’s largest ecosystem. Permanently.

  • http://www.letwellnessbegin.com Dr. S

    Not to distract from the importance of the pesticide risk, but if you look at the top GMOs in the pipeline for Monsanto, they are Mendel’s yield and drought tolerant soy/corn. So these companies are looking at it – probably not just strongly enough.

  • DHReeves

    Thanks to Joseph for linking me to the 4 GMO videos here. I was unable to find them by searching for GMO.
    Now if we could have one which addresses the question of the day. “Are those Glyphosate residues something to be concerned about?”

  • Neil

    Dr. Greger,

    Have you seen the most recent lawsuit against Monsanto?
    http://www.march-against-monsanto.com/monsanto-hit-with-class-action-lawsuit-for-false-advertising-heres-how-you-can-join/

    The suit claims that glyphosate IS toxic to humans, specifically to our gut flora.The suit seems to be based on information discussed in this article by
    Stephanie Seneff–perhaps the suit was even spurred by this article:
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3945755/#CIT0193

    The gist of the suit, and article, is that glyphosate robs us of critical gut
    bacteria and the nutrients they create. This is from the article:
    “Glyphosate suppresses 5-enolpyruvylshikimic acid-3-phosphate synthase (EPSP synthase), the rate-limiting
    step in the synthesis of the aromatic amino acids, tryptophan, tyrosine, and
    phenylalanine, in the shikimate pathway of bacteria, archaea and plants (de
    María et al., 1996). In plants, aromatic amino acids collectively represent up
    to 35% of the plant dry mass (Franz, 1997). This mode of action is unique to
    glyphosate among all emergent herbicides. Humans do not possess this pathway,
    and therefore we depend upon our ingested food and our gut microbes to provide
    these essential nutrients. Glyphosate, patented as an antimicrobial (Monsanto
    Technology LLC, 2010), has been shown to disrupt gut bacteria in animals,
    preferentially killing beneficial forms and causing an overgrowth of pathogens.”
    She cites an article showing celiac-like symptoms in fish exposed to glyphosate:
    “Thus, the evidence from this effect on fish suggests that glyphosate may interfere with
    the breakdown of complex proteins in the human stomach, leaving larger
    fragments of wheat in the human gut that will then trigger an autoimmune
    response, leading to the defects in the lining of the small intestine that are
    characteristic of these fish exposed to glyphosate and of celiac patients.“

    Your videos, as far as I know, do not discuss this possible impact of glyphosate. In fact, the video above indicates that
    glyphosate is not toxic to human tissue; it is the cocktail of chemicals in RoundUp that is toxic. Perhaps a video on this gut flora angle is warranted?

    Also, I discovered via the article in question that glyphosate is used pre-harvest to dessicate, i.e., dry out, soybeans, corn, all types of grains, sunflower seeds, etc. This apparently increases yields by reducing moisture that causes rot, fungus, and sprouting. Here is an article by Monsanto
    on it. See page 22: http://www.monsanto.com/products/documents/glyphosate-background-materials/agronomic%20benefits%20of%20glyphosate%20in%20europe.pdf

    See also:
    http://cdn.intechopen.com/pdfs-wm/28429.pdf
    file:///C:/Users/review/Downloads/GRDC_FS_Pre-harvest%20herbicide%20pdf.pdf

    Snopes.com doubts some of the claims made by Seneff in her article, specifically how often glyphosate is used to desiccate: http://www.snopes.com/food/tainted/roundupwheat.asp

    So glyphosate is sprayed on living, Roundup ready crops, to kill surrounding weeds. Because it is a systemic chemical, it is absorbed by the RoundUp-ready plants, and accumulates in their tissue. Then, once these Roundup-ready crops are done growing, the glyphosate is sprayed on the “dead” seeds to reduce moisture content. We’re getting a double dosing it seems. We eat these plants directly, or indirectly by way of processed oils, sugars (cane and corn syrup); processed foods in general; and by eating animal products from livestock and fish fed these grains and legumes.

    Is there a connection with the widespread use of glyphosate/RoundUp and the explosion of some illnesses within the last few decades? Monanto patented glyphosate in 1970, and began marketing RoundUp around 1974. Asthma, autism, celiac disease, gluten intolerance, etc., have soared. Stephanie Seneff believes so, as do others. There does seem to be some correlation with the use of glyphosate and recent illnesses.
    http://ehp.niehs.nih.gov/1307044/
    http://people.csail.mit.edu/seneff/Swanson_et_al_2014.pdf

    In sum, perhaps you can address the claims made in the suit and the Seneff article regarding glyphosate.

    Best,

    Neil

  • studentofplants

    Thanks for this series of Videos on GMOs, Dr Greger. What can you tell us about Golden Rice, there’s a paper that tested a few people and concluded the Vitamin A was bio-available. Other papers questions the efficacy of making GMOs to fix vitamins from one food source to another and fear the GMO pathway in general on principle or out of irrational fear.

    Here’s a couple of references I’m interested in your opinions on Golden Rice and the politics and science around GMO technology in general.
    Golden Rice is an effective source of vitamin A – American …
    http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/89/6/1776.full.pdf
    (free)

    Tough Lessons From Golden Rice
    Martin Enserink
    Science 25 Apr 2008:
    Vol. 320, Issue 5875, pp. 468-471
    DOI: 10.1126/science.320.5875.468
    http://science.sciencemag.org/content/320/5875/468

    (paywall)