Rachel Parent, the 14-year-old activist who recently slammed Kevin O'Leary for his position on GMOs, has scored a debate with CBC's arch-capitalist.
Parent is scheduled to appear on "The Lang And O'Leary Exchange" on July 31. She will debate O'Leary for 3 to 5 minutes on genetically modified foods (GMOs).
The appearance on the show is the result of a challenge Parent issued in a speech responding toO'Leary's statements that food giant Monsanto is a "hero" and that those opposed to GMOs are "stupid."
Parent promised O'Leary she would not to call him a "fascist" if he would pledge not to call her "stupid."
A HuffPost story on Parent's challenge to O'Leary quickly went viral and led to a deluge of comments to CBC.
Parent told HuffPost in an email that she's unsure about how O'Leary will react in a debate with a 14-year-old and that all she knows for sure is that he really seems to like Monsanto.
As for Amanda Lang, Rachel said the CBC host seems to understand "how serious the GMO issue truly is."
Parent's GMO activism recently won her acclaim from Now Magazine, which named her an "environmental hero."
The issue of GMOs, which are not subject to mandatory labels in Canada and the U.S., are a mounting source of controversy globally. The United States is the world's largest producer of GMO crops.
Many, such as O'Leary and Monsanto, contend that crops with DNA altered to make them more resistant to vermin and disease are the only way to feed an exploding global population.
That, however, hasn't stopped Europe, New Zealand and Australia from instituting strict regulations regarding GMOs.
Are you worried about eating genetically modified foods? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
With earlier reporting.
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There's a reason why most sugary treats give us a rush. Hidden artificial colours in foods can cause hyperactivity and headaches, says <a href="http://enlightenedlife.ca/">holistic nutritionist Danielle Felip</a>.
Bleached White Flour
Found in most white breads, bleached white flour is usually stripped of nutrients and fibre and adds little value to our diets, Felip says.
High-Fructose Corn Syrup
This ingredient is found in most processed foods, including lunch meats, and has no nutritional value, Felip says. It has also been linked to increase risks of type 2 diabetes, and overconsumption can be damaging to our livers.
Artificial sweeteners give food that sugary taste that is also quite addictive. But Felip says that artificial sweeteners are usually chemically derived and have been linked to migraines and even cancer.
BHT (Butylated Hydroxytoluene)
BHT or butylated hydroxytoluene is often added to most processed foods to preserve fats. Felip says overconsumption of this chemical can cause allergic reactions on the skin.
Partially Hydrogenated Oil
Partially hydrogenated oils (which are often found in cake mixes, peanut butter and baked goods) can decrease good cholesterol levels, are linked to heart disease and are hard for the body to dissolve, Felip says.
MSG (monosodium glutamate) is a food additive that is found in many foods, especially in fast food restaurants. Felip says MSGs often overexcite our nerve cells in the brain and can even (eaten in large amounts) cause brain cell death. On top of that, MSGs also can lead to exhaustion after a big meal.
Sodium Nitrate And Sodium Nitrite
Sodium nitrates and nitrites are <a href="http://culinaryarts.about.com/od/seasoningflavoring/a/nitrates.htm">chemical compounds commonly found in meat products like bacon and hot dogs</a>, according to about.com. Nitrates and nitrites can affect the way your body uses sugar and may increase the risk of diabetes and colorectal cancer, Felip says.
Sodium benzoate is a chemical preservative that is used to prevent the growth of bacteria in foods like jams, fruit pies and soft drinks. "It can also deprives our cells of oxygen and weakens the immune system," Felip says.
Sulphites are food additives used to preserve food colour and prolong shelf life in many food products including canned fruits, frozen fries and soy products. Felip says sulphites can cause allergic reactions and flushed faces and <a href="http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/fn-an/securit/allerg/fa-aa/allergen_sulphites-sulfites-eng.php">swelling of the eyes, face, tongue among others.</a>
Next: Worst Foods For Teeth
This one might be surprising for some of you. "Dried fruits are very sticky and high in sugar. The sugar gets stuck between teeth and stays there for hours, feeding the bacteria in the mouth, which can cause dental erosion," says <a href="http://www.fitspeakers.com/" target="_hplink">Dr. Uche Odiatu,</a> a doctor of dental medicine based in Toronto.
The acid in vinegar, which is essential to the pickling process, wears away at the enamel of your teeth and causes staining.
Sugar creates an acidic environment in your mouth, and over time, that can wear away at your tooth’s enamel.
Red and white wines contain erosive acid, which can soften valuable enamel within five minutes of exposure. The tannins (compounds found in red wine) also dry out the mouth and can stain teeth.
Drinking pop full of sugar often leads to cavities, but it can also lead to tooth erosion. Surprisingly, so does diet pop. "Sugar-free diet sodas also contain citric and phosphoric acid and can erode the enamel when consumed often," he says.
Hard candies take a while to dissolve in your mouth and during this time, sugar sticks to your teeth and can cause damage to your enamel. Hard candies that dissolve slowly in your mouth allow bacteria more time to produce acid, which can also damage your chompers.
Chewy candies stick to your teeth for a long time and allow bacteria to feed off the sugars. "Bacteria forms acid with the sugar, which attacks the protective layer of tooth enamel," Odiatu says.
"Citrus fruit are fine as part of a balanced diet. But you would be surprised to hear how many Canadians have a maladaptive habit of sucking on limes or lemons throughout the day," he says. Citric acid in fruit wears away the tooth enamel which leaves teeth susceptible to cavities.
Acidic fruit juices raise the level of acid in your mouth and over time, this can also eat away at your tooth enamel. Fruit juices, like lime or cranberry, can be just as acidic as vinegar and can wear down the tooth enamel over time, leading to cavities, and sensitive teeth, Odiatu says.
Coffee And Tea
The darker the beverage, the darker the stain. You may think tea is gentler on your teeth than coffee, but that’s not always the case. "Some black tea may stain your teeth more than coffee. Like red wine, black teas have high tannin content which causes staining."
Refined carbohydrates come in many forms. "There are a growing number of articles in the dental health literature that have related the high consumption of refined carbohydrates to inflammation in the body." Odiatu says. Inflammation is a key player in a number of chronic diseases like gingivitis and periodontitis (inflammation around tissues that support your teeth).
Next: The Worst Foods For Your Heart
Hot dogs, bacon, sausage and deli meats -- even lean ones like turkey -- are made with <a href="http://www.health.harvard.edu/healthbeat/avoid-these-foods-for-a-healthier-heart">loads of sodium and preservatives</a>, often including nitrates and nitrites, both of which have been linked to heart problems. "With processing, you lose control over the quality of the ingredients," says <a href="http://drcynthia.com/dr-cynthia/">Cynthia Thaik, M.D.</a>, a Los Angeles-based cardiologist. Processed meats are also <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-katz-md/nutrition-advice-the-trut_b_584758.html">higher in saturated fat and lower in protein</a> than any red meat you could prepare yourself, writes director of the Yale Prevention Research Center and HuffPost blogger, David Katz. Not convinced to stay away? Processed meats have also been linked to a <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/13/processed-meat-pancreatic-cancer-bacon-sausage_n_1204620.html">higher risk of diabetes <em>and</em> pancreatic cancer</a>.
Yes, the processed picks are <em>worse</em> for your heart, but that doesn't mean you should go wild for steak. Instead, consider it more of a treat than a staple in your diet: It's still high in saturated fat, even when it's unprocessed. "I don't want to suggest that we have to go [completely] plant-based," says Thaik, "but moderation is always the key." If you're not planning on changing your carnivore ways anytime soon, at the very least pick a <a href="http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/cuts-of-beef/MY01387">lean cut of beef</a>, which, according to the USDA, contains less than 10 grams of total fat and 4.5 grams of saturated fat. Or opt for extra-lean, with 5 grams of total fat and less than 2 of saturated fat. Of the 29 cuts that meet these regulations, <a href="http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/cuts-of-beef/MY01387">five are extra-lean</a>, according to the Mayo Clinic, including eye of round roast or steak, sirloin tip side steak, top round roast and steak, bottom round roast and steak and top sirloin steak.
That cheesy slice may contain as much as <a href="http://www.realage.com/mens-health-guide/worst-junk-food-for-heart-disease-2">two thirds of your daily recommended limit of saturated fat</a>, according to Real Age, which is found mostly in animal products like beef, pork, butter, cream and milk. The American Heart Association recommends getting no more than <a href="http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/Cholesterol/PreventionTreatmentofHighCholesterol/Know-Your-Fats_UCM_305628_Article.jsp">7 percent of total daily calories from saturated fat</a>. (Based on a 2,000-calories-a-day diet, that totals out to about 15 grams a day of saturated fat). And even though you may think it's "just cheese," many dairy products are actually highly processed, says Thaik. To lighten up, skip extra cheese and top with veggies instead of pepperoni or sausage.
When you consider that the ingredients in this heavy sauce are <a href="http://allrecipes.com/recipe/alfredo-sauce-2/">butter, cream and cheese</a>, it's easy to see why serving up this pasta dish would pose saturated fat problems -- especially if you're dining out where sauce is ladled over <em>piles</em> of noodles. If you really love an alfredo dish every now and again, ask for the sauce on the side and stick to just a tablespoon or two. If you're making your own at home, try a lightened-up recipe, like <a href="http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-detail.asp?recipe=163122">this one from SparkPeople</a>, which replaces butter with olive oil, cream with skim milk and cuts down on the amount of cheese.
These fatty acids are created through processes that make vegetable oils more solid, according to the American Heart Association. They're cheap to produce, are used to make packaged and prepared foods last longer and can be re-used in frying. But <a href="http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/GettingHealthy/FatsAndOils/Fats101/Trans-Fats_UCM_301120_Article.jsp">trans fats raise LDL or "bad" cholesterol while also lowering HDL or "good" cholesterol</a>, thereby putting your heart at risk. While a number of manufacturers have cut back on trans fat use in light of these health risks, packaged snacks, baked goods and some margarines may still contain it, according to EatingWell. Look for hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils on ingredients lists and beware the <a href="http://www.eatingwell.com/nutrition_health/heart_healthy_diet_center/the_worst_and_best_things_to_eat_for_your_heart?page=2">"zero trans fat" labels -- many are hiding .5 grams and rounding down to zero</a>. But considering that the AHA recommends getting <a href="http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/GettingHealthy/FatsAndOils/Fats101/Trans-Fats_UCM_301120_Article.jsp">no more than 2 grams a day</a>, that adds up, and fast!
As restaurants use their frying oil over and over again, the <a href="http://www.livescience.com/14781-unhealthy-fried-foods-heart-attacks.html">fat becomes more and more saturated</a>, according to Live Science. And, as mentioned previously, trans fats are often lurking. Even though some restaurants may have cut back in the face of mounting health concerns, a number of joints still fry with solid oils like shortening, says Thaik. However, a 2012 found that <em>how</em> you fry makes a big difference. Among 41,000 Spanish adults, researchers found no link between fried food consumption and heart problems, likely because <a href="http://healthland.time.com/2012/01/25/a-healthier-way-to-eat-fried-foods/">cooking with heart-healthy olive oil is more common</a> than in the U.S, Time.com reported.
"When we think of heart disease, a lot of people think cholesterol and fat, but we know that sugar, as it relates to obesity and the effect it has on insulin, has a lot to do with the development of artherosclerosis," says Thaik. In fact, drinking one sugary beverage a day leads to a <a href="http://vitals.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/03/12/10656108-soda-drinking-men-at-higher-risk-for-heart-attack">20 percent increase in a man's risk of having a heart attack</a>, according to a 2012 study, <a href="http://thechart.blogs.cnn.com/2012/03/12/a-soda-per-day-may-raise-heart-attack-risk/">even if those empty calories <em>aren't</em> causing weight gain</a>, CNN reported. Soda has previously been linked to <a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19211821">increased rates of heart disease in women</a>, as well. And diet soda isn't any better. A 2012 study found that a daily diet soda <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/28/health/research/diet-soft-drinks-linked-to-risk-of-heart-disease.html">increased risk for stroke, heart attack and death</a>, although the exact cause is not yet fully understood.
There's little on the drive-thru menu that isn't loaded with saturated fat, trans fat, sugar or sodium, making most of your orders recipes for disaster. And the consequences for the heart are nearly immediate. A 2012 study examined the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/11/27/fast-food-health-arteries-beauty_n_2198725.html">effects of fast food on the arteries after just one meal</a> and found that the ability of the blood vessels to dilate dropped by 24 percent, YouBeauty reported. "Not just fast food but processed food in general has a very high sodium content just by the pure nature of having to do the preservation," says Thaik. Soups and soy sauce are obvious culprits, she says, but saltwater sushi and even bread can be more surprising sources of salt.