Dear Readers: You may hear the terms “GMO” and “non-GMO” in the media. Have you ever wondered what that means?
“GMO” stands for “genetically modified organism.” A GMO is something (for our purposes, a food) whose DNA has been scientifically altered by man for any number of reasons: to improve flavor, to produce more from a crop (to save money) and to prevent insect damage, for example.
Corn, beets and soybeans are the largest crops that are genetically modified, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (fda.gov), and these are then made into forms of oils and sugars.
The big question: Are genetically modified foods safe to eat? Research largely says “Yes.” The FDA regulates their production. As with anything, some people may have allergies to GMOs. By the way, organic foods are always non-GMO.
This is a big discussion. Do your research, talk to your doctor and decide.
Dear Heloise: When a jar won't open, tap the side of the lid firmly but carefully on the carpeted floor. This will break the vacuum seal.
Angela S. in Salt Lake City
Dear Heloise: To keep my feet warm, I layer knee-high stockings under socks. Two thin layers is warmer, to me, than one bulky layer.
I even got my husband to wear the knee-high stockings under his socks — he works outside. His buddies don't know — or maybe they do it, too?
Mary Jane S. in Chicago
Dear Heloise: When I make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, I put peanut butter on both pieces of bread, and then I put the jelly on the peanut butter. This helps to keep the bread from getting soggy before lunch.
Tim D., Lubbock, Tex.
Dear Heloise: I am overrun with envelopes from mailings! I've come up with a few ideas on how to use them:
● Perfect for a shopping list — tuck coupons inside.
● Makes a good pad for phone messages.
● Good for paint samples and fabric swatches when redecorating.
● Organize stamps and return-address labels.
● Cash keeper; I use the cash when shopping instead of a credit card.
These hints put those envelopes to good use.
Jill L. in New York City
Dear Heloise: I use tomato or vegetable juice instead of oil to stew small pieces of meat. I remove the meat and use it in my recipe. I let the vegetable juice cool, I pour it into a container, and into the fridge it goes.
When the fat gels, I remove it and use the juice as a beef-and-veggie-flavored soup!
Roslyn S., Ralston, Neb.