Have you ever seen the popular MyPlate? It is a simple graphic to indicate the type and amount of food needed for a balanced diet in humans. If you have seen it, you will notice that a large section of the plate includes foods derived from cereals and grains, which are a great source of carbohydrates, an important biomolecule that our body uses as a primary energy source for all cells. Wheat is one of the most important grains worldwide, and you probably eat it daily in foods such as bread, cookies, waffles, sweets, pastries in general, pasta and many other dishes. Now, can you imagine a disease that does not allow you to eat any food that is prepared with wheat? It would be very difficult for me, because in my country, Chile, we generally eat bread at breakfast, lunch and dinner, in fact, we are the world’s second
On Wednesday, Slate published a long, in-depth feature article on GMO labeling by William Saletan called Unhealthy Fixation. It has been the talk of the week in the social media discussion about genetically engineered crops and the arguments and tactics of the organizations and individuals who oppose their use.
To help educate people about the many methods that are used to generate new traits in plants, Biology Fortified has created an infographic on six different crop modification techniques, with examples of crops generated with each method. This infographic was made by Layla Katiraee together with Karl Haro von Mogel and we hope that it will be the first of many graphics that Biology Fortified will develop to help people understand and relate to the science! This post provides the references and a brief explanation on each technique, along with downloads in multiple formats.
Around the world there are “Skeptics in the Pub” events that gather folks from the local community who are interested in issues of science, technology, health, and sometimes explore the more ephemeral things like the paranormal – ghost busting and Bigfoot sorts of discussions might ensue. You should look around and see if there are folks in your area that host these evenings, and you’ll find folks interested in hearing about and discussing these wide-ranging and fascinating topics, with beer or cider or perhaps a soda. Personally, I hang around at the Boston Skeptics events, but these exist world-wide. Look for one around you. They are fun and interesting and can help support local venues. Earlier this year I asked if the Boston Skeptics would be interested in hearing about GMOs – but from the Monsanto side. Like good skeptics, they were open to hearing this side of a controversial
My TED talk on sustainable ag, food security and GMOs is now available for viewing. Please watch it and let me know what you think!