Biomedical

Are genetically engineered foods bad… or is it just politics?

The debate on genetically modified organisms (GMO) especially in regards to food production is strong and many say biased too. It is almost inevitable though… there are huge investments in agriculture and thus a lot of giant companies having different opinions patents and investments. Everyone trying to manipulate your opinion to sell you more. So you end up reading articles to find the truth. But before we start you should know that the truth can change and you should keep up to date with science and the studies that come out every day. So you can follow Qul Mind on Twitter or Facebook or just bookmark the page, but do the same for other science websites, have as many sources as you can.

So what’s the answer..? What’s happening with GMOs?

In general we get the same conclusion we did back in 2001… we need more studies. But we also have a lot more evidence and some of them very controversial.

The main concern is with foods, engineered to be resistant to insects or cold and drought for example. Foods like the golden rice were designed to be healthy and obviously they are. Resistant GMOs though should be safe, and they seem to be. They were designed by us for us.

There have been many studies on them, and those studies keep saying that there are no risks, but we should continue studying GMOs before introducing them to our diets. So that’s the TLDR of it basically if you don’t care about the science and the specifics, GMOs are not harmful.

What about allergies? I heard they cause allergic reactions.

Toxins? (I hate this word)

Cancer? A study said that! Right?

Yes.., and no. Let me explain.

Not all scientists are awesome like me. Some are weird…..Like those two guys…

Gilles-Éric Séralini and Jeffrey Smith.

Gilles-Éric Séralini By La doc du 92 – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=45922832

Jeffrey Smith By cheeseslave from Los Angeles, CA, USA – Jeffrey Smith, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=27731802

Only Seralini is an actual scientist by the way. But both of them are really invested in politics! They call themselves activists i think. Gilles-Éric Séralini has published article criticized by many scientists for their inaccuracy. Every article is about how GMOs are causing cancer etc. You might have heard a story about it, but later he retracted those, but i guess the media could not make catchy stories about that.

Jeffrey Smith, just writes awful articles with no sources or science to support them about how genes from GMOs will travel into your body… Something that sounds crazy to anyone who even went to school and learned about basic biology. He talks about allergies… but again with no evidence to support his claims and he even uses the word i hate…. Toxins

Everything can be a toxin if you consume too much of it… and again there are no evidence to support that.

The worst part about those guys is that they have caused research on GMOs to stay back and instead of improving we just sit there and enjoy organic foods while failing to meet demands to feed the whole population.

It is not just them though. There have been many studies claiming that GMOs are terrible cause cancer and allergies but all have been proven false, biased or had missing analyses that when included changed the whole result of the study.

What i found from several studies (linked at the end) is that there are no risks from GMOs. All the credible studies claim that they are safe to consume and that tiny amounts of pesticides are not significant if existent in the end product. Additionally, there is no point in banning GMOs like the EU did… you stop innovation in a field that sooner or later will become essential. And yes we can understand crops and optimize farming techniques without pesticides or genetic modification, but i think that eventually this won’t be enough. I am not an expert on the field though, just a biologist so i may be wrong.

Finally it seems that while people have strong opinions on GMOs, everyone agrees that we should change the way we assess their safety and we perform studies. More studies means more safety and it is obvious that some people just want to hate their opponent whether this is for profit or not.

I think that i am ok with eating something scientifically tested. At the end even the healthiest product on earth will have molecules that could harm me. If those are not significant, they don’t make a difference in a lifetime should we care? I want to eat the healthiest product, but i think there is none and there can’t be. Everything can harm you, and the two molecules of pesticide will probably not contribute to it. But i am waiting until a research says they will. Until then i would be willing to introduce to my diet some of the safest more tested GMOs.

What do you think? You can leave comments below. Share this, have a discussion! Or correct me, i am not perfect, show me where i am wrong so i can learn with you!

Sources: Unintended Effects in Genetically Modified Food/Feed Safety: A Way Forward
Published GMO studies find no evidence of harm when corrected for multiple comparisons

Impact on environment, ecosystem, diversity and health from culturing and using GMOs as feed and food
Case studies on genetically modified organisms (GMOs): Potential risk scenarios and associated health indicators
Final health and environmental risk assessment of genetically modified soybean MON 87701
GMO: Human Health Risk Assessment
Genetically modified foods: safety, risks and public concerns—a review
Enzymatic detoxification of mycotoxins for healthy food

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