Do GM Foods Make You Fat?

New research shows the genetically modified (GM) foods may help make you fat. So, today’s weight loss tips are 1. Go organic and 2. Cut out high-GM fast food and sodas.

Corn tamburix

How did something so healthful and natural become dangerous for our diet? Photo: tamburix, Flickr.

Chances are, you ate several things today that contained genetically modified (GM) organisms.

Now, new research shows that GM food might be making you fat.

The research comes from an international study of how GM food affects rats, mice, pig and salmon.

The researchers involved come from Hungary, Austria, Ireland, Turkey, Australia and Norway.

Very little research has been done on GM foods in the past, because the companies that produce it are among the biggest in the world. They have been able to buy themselves a free pass to serve it up without labels or having to prove it’s safe — especially in America.

Fat Cats, Er, Make That “Fat Rats”

During this new research, rats that ate GM corn for 90 days became fatter than the control group of rats, which was fed non-GM corn. When the rats were fed fish that had been raised on GM corn, they also got fatter than those not eating GM food.

“If the same effect applies to humans, how would it impact on people eating this type of corn over a number of years, or even eating meat from animals feeding on this corn?”, asks Professor Åshild Krogdahl of the Norwegian School of Veterinary Science.

As much as 85% of corn sold in the US is genetically modified.

“I don’t wish to sound alarmist, but it is an interesting phenomenon and worth exploring further.”

The alarm bell that Dr. Krogdahl is referring to is this: GM foods might make us fatter.

Even eating food from animals who themselves ate GM food could cause us to gain extra weight. More research is needed to prove it, but the risk is clear.

What You Can Do Today

Here’s a weight loss tip: We don’t know for sure that GM foods actually make you fat, but if you’re having trouble losing that last 5 pounds, it might pay to be careful.

Try to eat organic foods when you can. Certified organic foods must be GM-free.

Most of all, stay away from sodas and fast food — because both contain lots of corn products. Soda is sweetened with corn syrup, for example, and the ground up cattle in your burgers were also fattened up with corn.

Free Resources:

Free Worksheet: Calculate Your Body Mass Index
Free Daily Food Log: Help Yourself Eat Better and Lose Weight
Free E-Newsletter: Stay Motivated, Keep Learning
Free Weigh Loss Quote of the Day or Quote of the Week: Get Inspired Again, and Again, and Again...

Comments

  1. ScienceRocks says:

    I’m not sure whether anyone has really delved into this study – by an Organic Group!

    However organic farming leads to lower yields, smaller less healthy corn, this is due to fertilizer levels and attack by microorganisms, plus the inability to regulate growth

    What this study showed is that Rats and salmon prefer GM corn to organic and therefore ate more of it. So animals clearly think that the bigger, healthier GM corn kernel is superior to organic

    Now for stating the obvious, maybe food is too tasty for the average human leading to self control issues. So is the moral to buy less tasty food and you’ll eat less? Its a valid point, but organic health benefits have never been quantitatively proven, and in fact the presence of mycotoxins from the fungi which can grow on organic crops is placing people’s health at risk.

    Just countering the argument here as fed up of hearing the organic lobbying of GM crops as evil and bad. Saying they make you fat is a genius way to scare people.

    • Dave Platter says:

      ScienceRocks, thanks for the reply. That’s an interesting idea, but I like to stick to the science. In this case, the science shows that GM foods made rats fatter than non-GM foods. That’s it. Anyone worried about losing weight, like my readers are, may want to bypass GM foods in case the same happens to people.

      Also, the study wasn’t done by a pro-organic or anti-GM group, but by a Dr at the Norwegian School of Veterinary Science. As you can see here (http://www.feedforhealth.org/default.asp?ZNT=S0T1O745), all Dr. Åshild Krogdahl wants to do is design the best possible animal feed, not to attack GM foods. Like this blog, she appears to be following the science, even if it shows GM foods to be bad.

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