Two same-age salmon, a genetically modified salmon, rear, and a non-genetically modified salmon, foreground. The USDA approved more genetically engineered crops in the last month, and the FDA could approve modified salmon for consumption in 2011. / AP PHOTO/AQUABOUNTY TECHNOLOGIES

By Betty Murray

Don’t head to the grocery store without your Smartphone. There are a number of apps available to help consumers make smart, healthy food selections.

Last week, I posted an article about the dangers of genetically modified foods. The FDA has approved some foods, which are genetically modified to grow faster, or be resistant to pesticides or insects, for example. Don’t be mislead — these foods don’t come without their own health risks, such as allergic reactions, mouth lesions, diarrhea, kidney and liver problems as well as negative effects on the body’s reproductive system.

This week, an Associated Press article dug deeper into the issue of genetically modified foods. According to the article, the “Agriculture Department has approved three more genetically engineered crops in the past month.” Consumers can also expect to see the approval of the first genetically modified animal for human consumption — genetically modified salmon.

While the battle to require genetically modified foods to be labeled as such is still going on, there are a few steps consumers can take to avoid such foods. So grab your Smartphone and download these apps to help keep you and your family safe and healthy.

  • GoodGuide (Available in iTunes) — Scan the barcode of more than 70,000 products and companies to see detailed ratings for health, environment and social responsibility. GoodGuide is adding thousands of products every month to its database of foods, personal care products, household chemicals, toys, and paper products.
  • Don’t Eat That (Available in iTunes) — Find out if the food you’re about to buy is genetically modified, includes carcinogenic ingredients, banned in other countries, bad for kids or pregnant women, or causes drug interaction or allergies. All you have to do is enter the name of specific ingredients to find details of that ingredient.
  • iScan My Food (Available in iTunes) — Scan food ingredients and find helpful information on harmful food additives and toxic ingredients. This app also allows consumers to identify and find information on genetically modified foods, their derivatives and enzymes spread in the food supply such as: maltodextrin, soy lecitin, and high fructose corn syrup. Also allows consumers to find information on the long term side effects of chemicals, toxic food coloring and preservatives.
  • True Food Shoppers Guide (Available in iTunes and the Android Market) — Created to help shoppers find and avoid genetically engineered ingredients. This guide offers valuable information on common genetically modified ingredients, brands to look for and look out for.

Take action and know what’s in your food before you buy!

Betty Murray, CN, HHC, RYT is a Certified Nutritionist & Holistic Health Counselor, founder of the Dallas-based integrative medical center, Living Well Health & Wellness and founder of the Metabolic Blueprint wellness program. Betty’s nutrition counseling practice specializes in metabolic and digestive disorders and weight loss resistance. A master of the bio-chemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutritional interventions to improve their health. Betty is a member of the Institute of Functional Medicine and the National Association of Nutrition Professionals.