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">From the write good essays wilbraham and monson academy, WebMD Archives. Genetically modified organisms -- plants and animals whose genes have been changed by scientists -- aren't just thought over, they're fought over. writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy. GMOs often make news related to the article on books wycliffe college, environment, world hunger, the economy, politics, and yes, even health. Those against them say eating foods made from GMOs is writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, bad for you. Those in favor argue that you're way better off from the benefits that GMOs and other science-based innovations bring to the writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, farm, the store, and the table. A 2015 survey by the Pew Research Center shows this divide. Nearly 9 out of 10 scientists from the American Association for the Advancement of Science say GMOs are "generally safe" to eat. Though if you're like more than half of U.S. writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy. adults from the general public in that same survey, you think you probably shouldn't eat them. People disagree about when you should call something genetically modified. They argue about whether or not food made with GMOs should be labeled. They debate the long-term effects that producing and eating them will have on essay writing introduction university of east anglia (into) our planet and writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy our bodies. So what do you need to know to writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, make good choices for your health? Let's start with the basics. Changes to genes aren't necessarily a bad thing. Critical thinking levels IUBH School of Business & Management. They happen in nature. In fact, no matter what's on writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy the menu, it isn't exactly the same as what grew hundreds or thousands of writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy years ago. Bits of DNA, called genes, are responsible for writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, all sorts of characteristics and traits in every living thing, from height to article on books wycliffe college, how certain cells work. Useful traits help the plants and writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy animals with them survive or thrive better than ones without them, so they get passed along and eventually become common. Our ancestors sped up the process when they saved seeds of cream-of-the-crop plants to grow the next time, and the next, and the next. That's what turned small bunches of tiny kernels on tall grass 10,000 years ago into the big ears of juicy corn on the cob we have today. With animals, picks of the litter were paired to breed "new-and-improved" babies. Faster still -- bypassing many, many generations and seasons -- are the writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, ways that scientists create today's genetic changes, or modifications. They alter the DNA of seeds with radiation or chemicals, then choose which resulting plants to writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, breed. Or they can snip a gene (or several) from a plant, virus, or bacteria and plug it in to another to writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, transfer a desired feature. Short article Lakefield College School. These more precise and targeted adjustments, often referred to as genetic engineering, create what people typically think of when they hear "GMOs." Sometimes scientists move genes that come from the essay writing introduction university of east anglia (into), same kind of thing, like from one tomato plant to another. But they can mix different species, too, like a virus and writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy a tomato plant. Mixing plant species is how we've gotten papayas free of viruses, corn plants that survive drought, soybeans that stand up to weed killer, potatoes that don't bruise, and crops that yield more and cost less. That's good news for our food supply and writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy the business of article on books wycliffe college farming. Some GMOs are specially made to be packed with extra vitamins, minerals, and other health benefits. For example, Swiss researchers created a strain of critical thinking levels iubh school of business & management "golden" rice with a lot of writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy beta-carotene, an antioxidant good for your eyes and skin. writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy. Soybeans whose fats have been changed so they're more like olive oil can be turned into a heart-healthy replacement for oils with trans fats that's more heat-tolerant and better for cooking. Critical thinking levels IUBH School of Business & Management. And those bruise-free potatoes are supposed to cut down on cancer-causing chemicals created when spuds become french fries. Some biotech companies are doing experiments to make meat better for us, such as boosting the amount of omega-3-fatty acids in it. These essential fats help prevent heart disease and stroke and short article lakefield college school may protect against writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, cancer and other conditions. They may also help control lupus, eczema, and rheumatoid arthritis. writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy. But your body doesn't make them, so you have to get them from food. As the population grows, it's going to get harder to feed everyone. writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) estimates food production will need to double in some parts of the world by 2050. Write good essays Wilbraham and Monson Academy. GMOs are one way to writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, make enough nutritious food available with limited land, water, and other resources. But people worry about pollen and seeds from genetically engineered plants spreading beyond the gardening essay writing university of toronto, new college, fields where they were planted. writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy. Or what could happen if genetically modified animals mate with non-modified or wild ones. Many critics think of article on books wycliffe college the DNA in GMO-based foods as if it's toxic, a bad thing, says Alison Van Eenennaam, PhD, cooperative extension specialist in animal genomics and biotechnology at the University of California, Davis. As unappetizing as it may sound, "DNA has always been part of writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy our diet, and it's digested in your stomach along with the rest of your food," she says. "There is not some evil trace of poison." We got ruby red grapefruits through natural mutation, yet "few are questioning the safety of all the random genetic changes that went into their development," says Kevin Klatt, a PhD student in the molecular nutrition program at Cornell University. What seems to make people uncomfortable is when those changes happen deliberately in a lab. A group of scientists did an extensive review of research on the safety of crops from GMOs over the past 10 years. Essay writing for university Vermont Academy. They found no significant harm directly tied to writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, genetic engineering. And the American Medical Association thinks genetically modified foods are OK. Part of short article lakefield college school an official statement notes that in almost 20 years, no clear impacts on human health have been reported or confirmed in writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, professional journals. The World Health Organization agrees. They, along with the FAO, maintain a set of science-based standards, guidelines, and writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy practices called the Codex Alimentarius to promote good, safe food for everyone. It includes biotechnology and genetic engineering, too. Many governments draw from the Codex to write their regulations and recommendations. But there are still big differences of opinion, even among some scientists and doctors. Stephen MacDonald, PhD, a biotechnology and business strategy consultant, agrees that all foods -- at the most basic level -- are made of the same stuff. Even so, he doesn't dish up GMO-based foods for dinner because he's not convinced they have the same exact nutritional value. writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy. "I don't think they are dangerous per se, but I don't trust the writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, data that says they are entirely safe either," he says. "But," Klatt says, "there is no evidence that exposing foods to writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, chemicals or radiation is 'safer' than methods of writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy genetic engineering." Over the last 60 years, these approaches to causing genetic changes in seeds has given us around 3,000 altered crops. Why isn't there as much fuss over them? "The public might be less familiar with traditional breeding techniques and therefore less concerned," he says. The FDA's job is to make sure all food -- genetically altered or not -- is safe to eat. Through the Plant Biotechnology Consultation Program, the FDA raises safety concerns during the writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, engineering process and helps developers identify the kinds of essay writing for university vermont academy testing they should do. A team of writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy FDA scientists reviews information provided by short article lakefield college school the developer. They look at article on books wycliffe college, how a genetically engineered food compares to the writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, original. Is it different nutritionally? Did the new genes introduce something that could be harmful? For example, a soybean enriched with a protein from article on books wycliffe college, a Brazil nut wasn't brought to writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, market, even as animal feed, because tests showed that it might trigger a reaction for people with an allergy to those nuts. You can't catch a disease or get a virus from a plant, but every now and then one makes its way from animals to humans, like swine flu and bird flu. Because animal viruses may be used in genetic engineering, some people worry they could infect humans or other animals that eat meat produced this way. That's why the FDA takes a slightly different approach with genetically engineered animal products. writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy. They've issued guidance to help developers meet the high standards of the Codex Alimentarius and U.S. food safety regulations. The Center for Veterinary Medicine makes sure the animal is different in the way the developer says it is and that it's safe to gardening essay writing university of toronto, new college, eat. The FDA is also required by writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy the National Environmental Policy Act to gardening essay writing university of toronto, new college, consider potential significant impacts of GMO animals on the environment, like how easily they could spread disease. For a genetically engineered salmon that grows to full size in about half the time it normally takes, the FDA wanted to know how likely these fish would be to mix with ones whose genes haven't been tinkered with and writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy how likely they would be to survive and reproduce if they did. To minimize the risks, the developer raises the salmon in secure facilities in writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, Canada and Panama. The tanks aren't connected to any body of water, and they have barriers such as screens and writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy nets to prevent fish and writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy eggs from getting out as well as birds and gardening essay writing university of toronto, new college other predators from getting in. The salmon grown for food are sterile. A GMO food isn't allowed in stores in the U.S. until the writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, FDA team is satisfied it's safe. writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy. Ultimately, the write good essays wilbraham and monson academy, developer is legally responsible for essay writing for university vermont academy, the food's safety, like any other product we eat. Even though it's never happened before, some people fear that you could become genetically modified from eating GMO food. But genetic material doesn't get tacked on writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy like pin the tail on the donkey. An "added" gene isn't going to fall off and get stuck to yours. Bacteria-fighting enzymes and processes in your body are designed to prevent a genetic invasion. writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy. As a report from the article on books wycliffe college, American Medical Association's Council on writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy Science and Public Health explains, if an outside germ somehow survived digestion and got into your gut bacteria, it would have to be enough like your own DNA, in just the right place at just the right time, to glom onto essay writing for university vermont academy one of your genes and change it. To put things in perspective: It's just as possible (or impossible) for non -GMO foods to change your genes. Anything you eat has DNA that's "foreign" to you. Even so, scientists take great care not to use genes that have any hint that they might cause problems. Even though you may not realize it, you probably eat GMOs now. Up to 80% of processed foods in the U.S. have them. Most of the sugar we eat comes from beets, and almost all of writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy them are GMOs these days. Changing their genes has brought about bigger, better sugar beets that are stronger and last longer than those grown in the past. And whatever the source, "It's just sugar or sucrose. No DNA, no protein," Van Eenennaam says. Essay writing for university Vermont Academy. "There isn't something different or extra in sugar that comes from a bioengineered sugar beet." Nothing in the sugar can tell you where it came from. You can't avoid eating "genetically engineered sugar" because it doesn't exist, she explains. Engineered corn is the source of article on books wycliffe college a lot of cornstarch used to thicken soups and sauces as well as the corn syrup that sweetens foods and drinks. Cottonseed, canola, and writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy soybean oils made from GMOs go into mayo, salad dressing, cereal, bread, and snacks galore. But way more GMOs -- as much as 90% of what's grown -- are used as animal feed. Studies show there is writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, no difference in the makeup of meat, milk, eggs, or other food that comes from animals who've been fed them. And the animals themselves are just as healthy as those that eat non-GMO meals. The FDA looks out writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, for them by testing the safety of animal feed, too. China, Australia, and the European Union require GMO foods to be labeled, but the U.S. doesn't. Many states are in the process of passing laws about the labeling and sale of genetically engineered food, but some federal lawmakers are trying to overrule them and prevent that. The FDA favors voluntary labeling and has published recommendations for manufacturers. writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy. The agency also takes public comments about this guidance and is considering some citizen petitions. The question of what could need a label is another sticky subject. Foods created by writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy changing genes with radiation or chemicals don't fall under GMO regulations and wouldn't have to writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, be labeled. Article on books Wycliffe College. The latest methods of genetic engineering aren't covered by write good essays wilbraham and monson academy older rules, so you won't see labels on those foods either. But the National Academy of Sciences says this inconsistency doesn't make sense: What matters is the fact that genes have been artificially changed, not the way it was done. If you want to stay away from GMOs, eat only fresh, whole, unprocessed foods marked "certified organic" or "USDA organic." That's how MacDonald shops. But the makers of these foods tag them on the honor system, and they're not checked by the government. Article on books Wycliffe College. And it's OK for these claims to appear on foods developed from essay writing introduction university of east anglia (into), genes originally altered by chemicals or radiation. Claims of "non-GMO" and writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy "GMO free" can't be scientifically or legally supported by essay writing for university vermont academy any testing methods. But the nonprofit Non-GMO Project has independently certified specific foods and writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy products from more than 1,900 brands as made with best practices for avoiding GMOs: Look for the Non-GMO Project Verified seal. In the produce section, only write good essays wilbraham and monson academy a few things might be GMOs: The faster-growing salmon, which the FDA cleared in November 2015 after several years of study, will probably be the first animal GMO in the supermarket, after guidelines are set for how to writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, label it. Even if that happened today, it would be months or years before you could buy any. Stores like Earth Fare, The Fresh Market, Sprouts Farmers Market, and Whole Foods want to make sure their customers know what they're buying and have choices. These grocers offer their own non-GMO products as well as stocking other brands without GMOs. When you're dining out, your best bet is a restaurant that uses organic ingredients. The overwhelming science so far says that GMOs won't hurt us. But concerns like the chance -- however unlikely -- that GMOs may cause genetic changes, allergies, or other serious harm to your health leave room for further study. There could be consequences no one thought to look for, or traits scientists can't test for writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, yet, or worst-case scenarios reviewers hadn't considered. For his peace of mind, MacDonald would like to see more careful, well-designed studies done in unbiased academic settings, free from the influence of politicians and special interest groups. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine: "FAQs on GE Crops." Pew Research Center: "Public and Scientists' Views on Science and writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy Society." President's Council on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition: "Eat Healthy: Why Is It Important?" Learn.Genetics: "The Evolution of writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy Corn." Scientific American : "What Is a Genetically Modified Food?" New York Times : "Useful Mutants, Bred With Radiation," "Genetically Engineered Salmon Approved for Consumption." Genetic Literacy Project: "Delicious mutant foods: Mutagenesis and the genetic modification controversy." Bloomberg Business: "The Scariest Veggies of gardening essay writing university of toronto, new college Them All." Safety of Genetically Engineered Foods: Approaches to Assessing Unintended Health Effects , National Academies Press, 2004. World Health Organization: "Frequently asked questions on genetically modified foods." Population Institute: "FAO says Food Production must Rise by short article lakefield college school 70%." Porkka, M. writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy. PLOS One , Dec. Gardening essay writing University of Toronto, New College. 18, 2013. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations: "Biotechnology, including genetically modified organisms." Alison Van Eenennaam, PhD, cooperative extension specialist, animal genomics and biotechnology, department of animal science, University of California, Davis. Kevin Klatt, graduate assistant, division of nutritional sciences, Cornell University; student interest group, American Society for Nutrition. Lichtenstein, A. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition , September 2006. BBC: "Will we ever eat genetically modified meat?" Harvard T.H. Essay writing introduction University of East Anglia (INTO). Chan School of Public Health: "Omega-3 Fatty Acids: An Essential Contribution." Morisy, L. CSAPH Report 2-A-12, American Medical Association annual meeting, 2012. Nicolia, A. Critical Reviews in article on books wycliffe college, Biotechnology , March 2014. Codex Alimentarius: "About Codex." Stephen MacDonald, PhD, biotechnology and writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy business strategy consultant. FDA: "How FDA Regulates Food from Genetically Engineered Plants," "Consumer Info About Food from writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy, Genetically Engineered Plants," "FDA Animal Feed Safety System (AFSS) Update #10," "Animal & Veterinary: General Q&A," "Guidance for gardening essay writing university of toronto, new college, Industry: Voluntary Labeling Indicating Whether Foods Have or Have Not Been Derived from Genetically Engineered Plants," "Questions and Answers on FDA's Approval of AquAdvantage Salmon." Van Eenennaam, A. writing across the curriculum articles London International Academy. Journal of essay writing introduction university of east anglia (into) Animal Science , Nov. 20, 2014. USDA: "Sugar & Sweeteners." Gruere, G. Essay writing for university Vermont Academy. AgBioForum , 2007. European Commission Press Release Database: "Fact Sheet: Questions and Answers on article on books wycliffe college EU's policies on GMOs." Center for Food Safety: "State Labeling Initiatives." Milwaukee Journal Sentinel : "Crop seed mutation breeding increasing." Koshland Science Museum: "Improving Crops: Growing GMOs." Consumer Reports : "GMO foods: What you need to know." Whole Foods Market: "Quick Start Guide: How to Shop if You're Avoiding GMOs." Non-GMO Project: "The 'Non-GMO Project Verified' Seal," "Participating Retailers," "Verified Products." Washington Post : "FDA bans imports of genetically engineered salmon -- for now." Earth Island Journal : "FDA’s Approval of GE Salmon Based on Bad Science, Say Consumer Advocates." Union of Concerned Scientists: "Genetic Engineering Risks and Impacts."