Oh, Dr. Oz . . . You’ve done it again. Crossing the ethical lines of being a reputable doctor giving medical advice with entertainment sensationalism. The problem is many people think you are trustworthy and believable. I mean, you are Dr. Oz after all. This isn’t the first time you have crossed the ethical line. When the state of California was looking at Proposition 37, a GMO labeling bill, you had a pro GMO labeling segment on your show. Unknowingly to many people, you and your wife were behind the scenes active campaigners for this bill. And, unsurprisingly, you refused to look at both sides of the issue. We know you don’t like conflict on your show. Please read my blog about this issue.
So it is no surprise that your show, “What the Food Industry Doesn’t Want You to Know” used some of the same scare tactics. You are using fear mongering and misinformation about the use of pesticides. You tell moms that pesticide use is the “single biggest threat” to the food we eat and even more troubling, the food your children eat. It was over-the-top when you showed women wearing gas masks spraying corn with something I believe was to represent pesticides. Fear mongering at its best.
One of your experts on the show was Dr. Michael Hansen. After doing some research on Dr. Hansen, I realize you chose the wrong expert. He has a bias for non-GMO. Why do I say this? During a congressional testimonial he was quoting research done by Dr. Eric-Giles Séralini. In a nutshell, Seralini’s research resulted in GMO corn fed rats developed tumors. Unfortunately, this study was flawed in many respects. It was laughable research reported by his science researcher peers. The rats that were used are bred to develop tumors, no matter what they were fed. Because of Dr. Hansen’s association, support and reference to the Seralini study, he loses all credibility with me. He claims that farmers are using significantly more pesticides since the introduction of GMO’s some 20 years ago.
The truth is, according to Dr. Martina Newell-McGloughlin, expert contributor to the Best Food Facts and also director of international biotechnology research of the University of California, farmers have used 1 billion pounds LESS pesticides from 1996-2011 with the use of GMO technology. YOU NEEDED A FARMER ON YOUR SHOW!
So why do you, Dr. Oz, continue to scare your viewers? Food is an emotional subject for most moms. They want to feed their families healthy and safe food. But you, Dr. Oz, are putting unnecessary fear into their food decisions. Why? To increase your ratings? Is it the money? I have always been told to follow “the money.”
Compounding on fear, I also believe we are not using our critical thinking skills like we should. We just don’t do the research and call people out on misinformation or outright lies. And we need to do that. Please refer to the list of links at the bottom for science based research on GMO’s. In addition to those links, here is a quote from Dr. Carl Winter is an expert in toxicity.
“I published a review (in 2011) of the 10 most common pesticides the Environmental Working Group tested on each of the top 12 “most contaminated” fruits and veggies.
What I found in the vast majority of cases was that our typical exposure to pesticides from those foods was generally a million times lower than doses that haven’t even caused affects in animals.
In short, even for the “most contaminated” produce on their list, the level of pesticide exposure is incredibly low.”
The bottom line is moms just want the truth. They don’t want to hear about the latest fads or non-factual fear about foods. They just want the truth. And the truth is science-based, no fear-based. Dr. Oz, please tell us the truth.
I am curious, did you watch the episode? What did you think? Do you have any questions?
Here are more perspectives on the Dr. Oz Show:
Some resources on science-based facts on GMO’s
The Right to Know – the Truth
FoodDialogues – Pesticides, Fertilizer and Herbicides