GMOs: Good, Bad, or Just Plain Ugly? - 3rd Week
By Genevieve Cunningham
The topic of genetically modified organisms, otherwise known as GMOs, is a hot one. It induces fiery passion on both sides. Those who support GMOs don’t understand the big deal, and those who dislike them believe they are dangerous and unnecessary. So, what’s the truth? Are GMOs as harmful as their reputation suggests, or are they really harmless? Check out these facts about the topic and decide for yourself.
Genetically modified food can be bigger, more nutritious, and is seriously adaptable. In the case of world or even regional hunger, this can be a big deal. GMOs may mean a greater quantity of more nutrient dense food to go around. Some also believe that GMOs allow farmers to use less pesticides, which means less poisonous substances on our food. It’s important to note that you’ve likely been eating these foods for longer than you realize. Have you ever had a seedless grape or watermelon? Those fruits are not seedless in nature; they have to be created that way via genetic modifications. These are only a few of the benefits of using this controversial process, but their weight in our long-term health is big.
On the opposite side of the spectrum, many claim horrible side-effects caused by eating genetically modified foods. This side of research claims that once a food has been genetically modified, it won’t ever be returned to its pure state. Its seeds will also be modified, and with cross contamination, food will be changed and modified from here on out. Some research even suggests that allergies and illnesses have gone up since GMOs were introduced into the world. Whether this is a direct result of the foods is unknown, but a correlating link has been noted. In complete contrast to the opposition, some who dislike GMOs also claim that they cause a need for more pesticides to be used, meaning more poison on our food. Confused yet? So is everyone else.
The Final Verdict
It’s hard to say. As you can see for yourself, the research and claims are opposite and often completely contradictory. It all depends on what you read, who you trust, and how you internalize the information. When it comes to GMOs, the best advice is to do your own research and make your decisions based on your own opinions and the advice of your medical professionals. Are GMOs a blessing to the hungry or a thorn in the side of nutritional experts? Maybe the answer is both. In this case, GMOs seem to be both good and bad, while the debate will likely stay just plain ugly.