A Mom’s View on Food Safety and Sensationalism, “GMOs & Pink Slime”

Food safety has been in the general media recently. Is it for attention and sensationalism? Do we ignore it, join it or ask for the facts? Facts are always best. It feels good to have a scapegoat for our problems, but it is not productive and can possibly be destructive.

Emotional, unthought conclusions should not be considered the truth. For example, my daughter is a brain tumor survivor. She was diagnosed at age two. Brain Tumors are the leading cancer death cause in children. Like any other form of deadly cancer, it is difficult to catch in time. My daughter’s tumor was caught in time and she is one of the 5% that survived without major side effects from treatment. Our family is very grateful for this good luck and we thank her doctor who diagnosed her correctly and quickly.

Since her sickness, I’ve met other parents who’ve lost their children or had their children debilitated by this terrible disease. Their children were not diagnosed in time and their tumors grew into vital parts of the brain ( i.e. brain stem). Why weren’t they diagnosed quickly? One doctor thought the nausea the child was due to food allergies and ran tests for 8 months plus. Another thought the child’s headaches were due to perfumes in common household products and didn’t even fully analyze brain scans that showed the start of a tumor til two years later.  Did these doctors villianize foods and perfumes before they found facts?

Looking for villains in our food supply isn’t productive and can be detrimental. There are serious threats that can exist in our food supply and our food handling practices. Do we trust our government officials and their advice? Should we listen to what they have to say and the facts before we come to conclusions?

USDA advice on safe food handling: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/Factsheets/Safe_Food_Handling_Fact_Sheets/index.asp

Biotech in Food: http://www.fda.gov/Food/Biotechnology/default.htm

Lean Finely Textured beef aka “Pink Slime”:http://www.ift.org/Food-Technology/Daily-News/2012/March/16/USDA-affirms-safety-of-lean-finely-textured-beef.aspx

 

As a parent, one can spend hours, days, years feeling guilty for their child’s illness.  It isn’t productive to try to guess at the reason.  There is no data and there is no clear evidence about why children with brain tumors suffer so.  Please help scientists get facts by donating to the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation: https://www.firstgiving.com/fundraiser/susan-bautista/2012-puget-sound-ride-for-kids

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