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Layla Katiraee (Biochica)
43 followers -
Scientist, Mom, and Blogger
Scientist, Mom, and Blogger

43 followers
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Layla Katiraee (Biochica)'s posts

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I worked with Ask and Entomologist and +Biology Fortified, Inc. to put together the first in a series of infographics, the first of which explains how the Bt trait in GMOs works. For more detailed information about the trait, see: https://www.biofortified.org/info/gmo/bt/
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+Mommy, PhD, +Kavin Senapathy and I joined forces to write an article outlining socio-economic issues that are often blamed on GMOs. #FactsNotFear #Moms4GMOs

https://medium.com/@BioChicaGMO/gmos-a-scapegoat-of-the-american-food-system-5813eae795fb

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+Mommy, PhD, +Anastasia Bodnar, and I wrote an article outlining why we avoid the Non-GMO Project Label. We outline that non-GMO doesn't mean "Better for the Environment", doesn't mean "Healthier", and doesn't mean "Pesticide Free". #Moms4GMOs #Dads4GMOs #FactsNotFear

https://medium.com/@BioChicaGMO/were-scientists-we-re-moms-and-we-avoid-non-gmo-products-33bc0aa351a3#.v3htfuong

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My latest blog post explains what the IARC is, the extent of the organization's work when classifying a compound, how we're all exposed to carcinogens every day, and when precautions are necessary. http://frankenfoodfacts.blogspot.com/2016/08/i-expose-my-family-to-carcinogens.html

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My latest cross post for +Biology Fortified, Inc.  examines why GMOs aren't tested on humans. Why aren't they tested the same way we test drugs?

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My latest blog post is a collection of the graphics that I made a few months ago, outlining why some sources of information on GMOs should be viewed with skepticism. I review NaturalNews, March Against Monsanto, Organic Consumers Association, and Dr Mercola's website.

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Another collaboration with Thoughtscapism. She writes:

Impressions are powerful things. Marketing works by creating images that stick with people, and one area where it has succeeded very well, is in portraying organic farming as a distinctly different and better way of growing food in the minds of consumers.

But the reality is that there are no 'organic exclusive' methods. All the good methods available to organic farmers are available to any farmer. Many methods with notable evidence of benefits, like no-till, Integrated Pest Management, and crop rotations, are used just as much (or more, like in the case of no-till) among farmers that don't have to adhere to the limitations posed by the organic certification. Meanwhile some of the methods with well documented benefits, unfortunately, are not available to organic farmers because they are not deemed 'natural' enough.

Mommy, PhD got the idea to illustrate this concept with venn-diagrams, which led to us creating this infographic. For more information on the nature of pesticides, the environmental impacts of farming, and animal welfare, please see my piece: On farming, animals, and the environment
https://thoughtscapism.com/2015/02/24/on-farming-animals-and-the-environment/

Giving weight to environmentally conscious farming is a great thing. We should enable all farmers to continue developing and choosing more environmentally beneficial methods. Maybe by subsidising cover-cropping, or by supporting research to creating nitrogen-fixating biotech crops to alleviate need for fertilizer, or by creating even better, less harmful, and more targeted pesticides, that need less applications and leave more of the unintended insects unharmed.

Here's for giving less weight to marketing slogans and more to evidence.

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HPV is a very common sexually-transmitted virus, and it is sneaky. It can be picked up from your very first sexual encounter, and you wouldn't be aware it was there. The HPV vaccine currently protects against 9 strains of Human papillomavirus. All boys and girls should get the HPV vaccine during adolescence, to protect them from a variety of cancers caused by these nine strains.
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In my latest installment in the series "Better Know a Scientist", I interview Dr Lynn Sosnoskie about weeds, herbicides, and herbicide tolerance. I discuss whether we could have a system with no herbicides at all and some common misconceptions about her field. #NotThatKindOfWeed  
http://frankenfoodfacts.blogspot.com/2016/04/better-know-scientist-weed-scientist-dr.html

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Stories about arsenic in rice go around periodically. The FDA followed up on these concerns (see update here:http://www.fda.gov/ForConsume…/ConsumerUpdates/ucm493677.htm)

TL;DR: Eat a variety of foods. Feed babies a variety of foods. Rice can safely be a part of a healthy, well-balanced diet.

Liz Caselli-Mechael explains for The Scientific Parent what this new data and the FDA statement means for parents.

"The FDA’s guidance is totally consistent with existing guidance from the American Academy of Pediatrics: feed your baby iron-fortified cereals, since iron prevents anemia and is essential for healthy movement of oxygen through the body; mix up rice cereal with other cereals like oat, barley, and multigrain; and feed toddlers a well-balanced diet that includes a variety of grains.

Adding lots of variety in your kids’ diets is a great idea for so many reasons- it gets a more diverse set of vitamins into the mix, it helps kids develop their taste and texture experiences.

This means there are no changes needed to your infant’s diet based on the recent arsenic data, nor have they been permanently damaged or poisoning by it by following AAP (and likely your own pediatrician’s) food guidelines. The biggest risk factors associated with our diets are often the most obvious – almost nobody is getting an ideal amount of vegetables – so focusing just on rice doesn’t make much sense. Take this opportunity to add variety throughout your diet and amp up your protein, veggies, and all kinds of whole grains."
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