In yesterday’s post about soy, Ruth mentioned some negative effects attributed to genetically modified organism (GMO) foods. If you’re still a little unclear on what exactly a GMO is, we have previously touched on the subject a few times in the recent past. Back in August of last year, Ruth spoke about the evolution of the GMO and what kind of crazy experiments are being done in labs. I followed with a general overview of how GMO crops have become commonplace in American fields and contrast with how they are thought of elsewhere in the world. Sean brought up the heated debate in California over forcing companies to label their foods as GMO for the benefit of the consumer.
The reason I bring this all up is that there are a couple noteworthy mentions of GMOs recently in the news. First is an article that Ruth sent my way that mentions how Monsanto is trying to shape the image of GMOs with the next generation. They are doing this by offering a coloring book discussing the topic of “biotechnology”. Perhaps most interesting is this quote from the article that discusses the change in terminology:
“Polls show that the term ‘biotechnology’ is viewed much more favorably than ‘genetically modified’ or ‘genetically engineered food.’ Yet the term most easily recognized and understood by people is ‘genetically engineered food.’ So they are obviously trying to change the language for PR purposes, not accuracy or clarity.”
All that said, not all in evil in the world of GMOs. NPR recently ran a segment on a favorite item of paleo-eaters and CrossFitters alike — the sweet potato. The piece spoke about “a new approach to improving nutrition among the world’s poor might actually work. That approach is called biofortification: adding crucial nutrients to food biologically, by breeding better varieties of crops that poor people already eat.” The practice is being used in Africa to boost the vitamin content of their sweet potatoes. The varieties native to Africa commonly have white or yellow colored flesh, but the bright orange type of North America packs a healthy dose of much-needed Vitamin A. Using the practice of biofortification, scientists were able to alter the potatoes in Africa to have the orange flesh and this has been seen to positively affect the Vitamin A levels of the population.
I encourage you to educate yourself on the topic of GMOs and realize that the subject is not written in absolutes. They aren’t necessarily all evil, but there may be some benefit to knowing what you are putting on your dinner plate.
Bench Press 3×5*
(* = or Wendler)