• Ivonne Oquendo

Can we have an honest conversation about GMOs?

The topic of GMO’s can make someone cringe at a dinner party. It is as confusing and controversial as current politics. It is one of those subjects that I subtlety redirect to news weather and sports when a friend brings it up! Are they good? Are they poison? The conundrum continues. Meanwhile, what we can do for now is make an informed decision and hope that your dinner party guests don’t get in to a food fight ;)

GMO’s or genetically modified organisms, are engineered foods or plants. Scientists now have the ability to extract genes from the DNA of one organism and recombine them in to the DNA of the food or plant they want to alter. Bioengineers and other players in the food industry support GMO’s because the practice is said to yield larger crops resistant to disease, weeds, pesticides and droughts to name a few. GMO’s are also said to improve texture, flavor, increased shelf life and can grow in infertile soil, which can potentially help with starvation in developing countries.

Now to the nitty gritty. What foods are genetically modified? How does GMO’s affect our body?

The list is long, but some of the most common ones are Corn, Soybeans, Canola, Papaya and Sugar Beets. Some studies have shown that herbicides used in GMO crops such as Glyphosate has been shown to disturb the intestinal microflora balance as well as promote the growth of harmful bacteria strains. Digestive enzymes can also be reduced when consuming GMO foods which impair digestion. Next time your gut feels uneasy, do an inventory about the foods you have consumed lately and begin to choose more Organic, Non GMO whole foods.

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