Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are organisms that have been modified in a laboratory to get a desired characteristic. A scientist would take a gene from one thing and put it into another thing, commonly known as DNA transformation. Although this topic, GMOs, is extremely controversial not all that many people seem to know a lot about it. There are people who are for the benefits it may reap, those who fear it, and some don’t know what to think. Believe it or not, we eat these genetically modified foods all the time in today’s society. And for most of us, we have been eating them for most of our lives.
- One of the most influential benefits out there to GMOs is that there’s actually a better food quality and taste. By genetically modifying foods they can have a longer shelf life, be sweeter, be spicier, and just be all around better. They’re even sometimes seen as super foods!
- Another benefit would be vaccine possibilities, such as edible vaccines. This would make them more inexpensive as well as less painful. I don’t know anybody who is down for a shot.
- GMOs are also better for our health. They’re lower in calorie count, higher in fiber, thus making them much better for our waistlines. There’s also this rice called golden rice, it stimulates our bodies to create vitamin A, and in developing countries vitamin A is something they lack. Many children die and go blind yearly from a lack of vitamin A.
- The development of new crops that can grow in extreme climates. For example, the tundra, or maybe even Antarctica one day. This means we can grow food all year around and anywhere we want.
- “Superbugs” and “super weeds” are a possibility when GM crops are in the equation. If the bugs become resistant to the pesticides in GM crops, then everyone could have a problem. We’ll have a scene right out of a horror movie on our hands. While if the weeds become immune to the broad-spectrum weed killer, there will be some very unhappy farmers, the weeds will practically take over.
- Regulation and oversight of GM products is lacking. In the United States it’s not required for GM products to be labeled. If anyone gets sick from a GM product or even DIES from one there is no way of tracing it because we eat so much of the stuff. Biotech companies aren’t required to consult with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on new products the ones who do don’t have to take their advice.
- Some would say this is immoral and unnatural. If someone was a vegetarian or vegan, and they happened to eat a fruit or vegetable with some sort of animal gene infused into it and they found out, they’d feel horrible. Or what if a Jewish man or woman, who was completely kosher, just so happened to eat a GM product with a non-kosher animal in it?
- If you plan on having children one day you better switch to all organic food now. Studies are showing that GM foods are causing a decline in sperm count in the world’s population of men. As much as a 40-50% of a decline. While the women are having a much harder time actually getting pregnant and carrying the baby to term.
“All plants, and all animals including humans, are genially modified. That is what evolution means. They are genetically modified by natural selection of random mutations and recombinations. Some, such as maize, wheat cabbages, and roses, are additionaly modified by domestic breeding. And some are modified by engineered mutation or recombination. Any of these three kinds of genetic modification can have desirable or undesirable consequences.” Pro. Richard Dawkins.
“Today the vast majority of foods in supermarkets contain genetically modified substances whose effects on our health are unknown. As a medical doctor, I can assure you that no one in the medical profession would attempt to perform experiments on human subjects without their consent. Such conduct is illegal and unethical. Yet manufacturers of genetically modified foods are exposing us to one of the largest uncontrolled experiments in modern history. ” Dr. Martha R. Herbert.
“There is more than a casual association between GM foods and adverse health affects.” Says American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM).
Now that you have some more information on GM products and GMOs you’re probably starting to formulate an opinion of your own on them, if you haven’t already done so. This topic is one of the most controversial ones around. Who’s to say we’re not at risk and who’s to say we are? So what is your opinion? Are you for genetically modified foods and organisms, or against them?