Genetically Modified Food: Panacea or Poison is a revealing film that helps the viewers to decide that is the genetically modified foods production is a global poison or it is a panacea for fulfilling the global food needs.
What are genetically Modified Foods and Organisms?
Genetically Modified foods or GM foods are such foods, whose genetic material (DNA) has been changed by using the techniques of genetic engineering, in an artificial manner that doesn’t happen naturally. GMOs are genetically modified organisms that may be animals, plants, or microorganisms.
Examples of Genetically Modified (GM) Foods and Organisms
In US, approximately 85% of corn grow is genetically modified. Other examples of GMOs include soy, canola, alfalfa, milk, yellow crookneck squash, zucchini, and sugar beets, etc.
Bacteria were the first organisms to be altered genetically in laboratory. Now days, genetically modified bacteria are used for the production of insulin protein, which utilizes for the treatment of diabetes. Other bacteria have been used to produce clotting factors for the treatment of hemophilia, human growth hormone for the treatment of dwarfism, and many types of biofuels. GloFish (a florescent fish) was the first GM organism to be sold as a pet.
Other examples include Dolly, which was a female sheep and the first animal to be cloned, Herman the Bull, a bovine that was genetically modified for the production of milk having enhanced quantity of lactoferrine protein, several mousses for research purpose, and a pig in 2006 for the production of cheese.
Pros and Cons of Genetically Modified (GM) Foods
GM Foods have many advantages, like they possess resistance to insects, tolerance for drought, heat, and cold, and sometimes tolerance to herbicides. The most important advantage is an increase in crop yield. Some GM foods have been engineered to have higher contents of special nutrients like calcium, proteins, and other essential nutrients.
Some people link antibiotic resistance, food allergies, and cancers with GM foods. However, Genetic engineering is a somewhat new field, so there is a very limited or we can say negligible research on the long-term health effects of Genetically Modified foods.
Are Genetically Modified (GM) Foods Safe to Eat?
Scientists say that GM foods are safe to eat as their non-GM equivalents, and have no adverse impacts on the environment; however, public disbelief still remains. Doctors have been advised by the American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM) to not recommend GMO foods for all of their patients. Their cite evidences are animal studies, which indicating immune system and gastrointestinal disorders, organ damage, infertility and faster aging.
Genetically Modified (GM) foods has fulfilled the food needs of highly increased global population to a great extent, however, after its introduction in America, chronic illness in Americans increased from 7% to 13% in only 9 years, while food allergies also increased steeply. Although, adequate research doesn’t exist to confirm that GMOs are a causative factors.