Decoding the Food Labels on Produce

I remember being curious about what those little numbers on my apples meant when I was a little girl. So I thought I would share some information about these numbers. After reading up about our food supply those numbers are quite important if we want to stay healthy. Now, these numbers can be fluff...some things can be manipulated by the ‘powers that be’; but it is still good to be aware of their meaning as this allows us to be better able to make educated decisions.

I make it a point to know what I use as nourishment for my body. And the more I learn about fruits, veggies, organic vs non-organic, superfoods, etc...the more I make choices that will not only help me look and feel great but will also help keep my body and mind as healthy as possible. Like all of us, I want a happy, healthy and long life and our food truly does have the power to strengthen and rejuvenate our bodies.

There are three types of numbers that indicate what category our produce is in.

Conventionally Grown Produce - These have codes that are 4-digits long and begin with the number 4. These fruits and veggies have been grown with the run of the mill, pesticides, herbicides and fungicides that are commonplace commercially farmed produce. For the Dirtiest of these check out this article about it.

Organic Produce - have codes that are 5-digits long and begin with the number 9. These fruits and veggies are grown according to organic standards and are not genetically-modified.

Genetically Modified Produce - have codes that are 5-digits long and begin with the number 8. These cannot be organic and are grown from genetically modified seeds.

Why should you care if your produce is Genetically Modified??

Research has not shown these foods to be safe for human (or animal) consumption. Allergies, food sensitivities, and increasing our risk of cancer are other reasons we should avoid ingesting anything that is genetically modified. If your health isn’t high enough on your list of priorities, think of your children. Children face the greatest risk from these genetically modified foods and pesticides.  

The major food companies, however, know that most well-informed consumers will choose not to purchase something that is ‘labeled’ as a Genetically Modified food, so they can choose not to label their products as such in order to mislead consumers. That being said, in the US there are several foods that are most likely Genetically Modified, if they are not organic. These are the foods that should be purchased organic in order to protect yourself and your family from the health risks associated with these Genetically Modified foods.

**Wheat

**Corn

**Soy

**Papayas (grown in Hawaii)

**Zucchini & Yellow Squash (some - but it’s better to be on the safe side regarding this)

**Dairy (from cows treated with rbGH)

Arm yourself with information about your food to protect the health of yourself and your loved ones!

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