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Say no to GMO!

A little background about this post:

You are what you eat...or so it is said.  And as I am growing older, I see the wisdom in those words.
It all started with a bowl of popcorn. I love popcorn, I could eat it by the carload.  I never was particular about brand, and the kind you buy in the microwave bags was good enough for me.  Then when I began my weight loss journey some years ago, I discovered that popcorn was not a bad thing to eat on the plan I followed, if it wasn't drowning in butter or other topping.  I purchased a re-useable microwave popper and a jar of Orville Redenbacher's best.  It certainly did the trick when it came to trimming fat and calories.  In the meantime I noticed that I would have abdominal discomfort whenever I consumed this food as a snack.  I guess that I always had that problem with it but it became more noticeable over time.

I started thinking about why I had this problem.  One thought was that I did not drink enough water to help my food pass easily through the GI tract. So whenever popcorn was the snack of the day I always made sure to have a glass or two of water around the same time I was having my snack. That helped some, but it was not the whole solution.

In the meantime my husband was starting to follow the paleo or primal type of diet.  He is very careful to read labels and won't eat foods that contain more than a few ingredients, or if they have a lot of chemicals added to them.  I thought this was pretty wise thinking...and I wasn't ready to eat entirely the way he chooses to eat, but there were certainly some pearls of wisdom for me to embrace.
I had heard that organic corn or popcorn is for all intents and purposes a non-GMO food (will explain GMO in this post).  It was weird but none of the health food stores in my area didn't have any popcorn like that.  But it was available on Amazon, and once I started using that in place of regular store popcorn, the digestion problem was fixed!

What are GMO foods?

GMO is an acronym for genetically modified organism.  This term refers to any organism/living thing that has been altered using genetic engineering techniques.  In the plant world, this technique has been used to create new versions of all kinds of plants, including those we use in landscaping and those that produce the foods we eat.  The genetic modifications can modify these organisms in a number of ways--for example, a flower that has different colors than standard varieties of the same plant, enhanced disease resistance, faster growing time, etc.

The most common GMO foods in modern agriculture include soy, canola, corn, sugar beets, Hawaiian papaya, alfalfa, and squash. There are genetically engineered meats on the market these days as well. Sometimes these are the foods you buy at the produce market; in other cases, they are used in food processing and appear in the ingredient section of the label.

You may not think this is problematic.  But the truth is, no one really knows what consumption of these foods really does to the human body over time.  In essence, by consuming these foods we're all the lab rats in a large scale genetic engineering experiment!

You can find out more about these foods by visiting the non-GMO project website.

What do GMO foods have to do with chronic pain?

We really don't have a definitive answer about this...but with all we know about the gut as a second brain and how many foods can exacerbate conditions like fibromyalgia there is a real possibility that consuming GMO foods affect overall health and well-being. My popcorn story illustrates this point.
For those of you who can't or don't want to exercise or lose weight, here is a new avenue of approach: Try eating non-GMO as much as possible for a time...a month, two months, three months.  When the trial period ends, see if you aren't feeling better.  My bet is--you will!

Sources: NonGMO Project;; wikipedia


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