From the Mailbag: Seedless Fruit and Herpes Remedies

  • Are seedless fruits safe to eat?
  • Two powerful supplements to help zap cold sores and prevent outbreaks
  • Plus, read on to discover an exclusive opportunity we are sharing with you today! 

Dear Living Well Daily Reader,

You’ve got questions…

We’ve got answers!

Today, we’ve got a very important question about seedless fruit and some follow-up supplement suggestions about last week’s herpes article.

Let’s dive in…

--Are Seedless Fruits GMOs?

Are seedless watermelons (and other seedless fruits, for that matter) considered GMOs? 

How are seedless fruits grown? They don’t have seeds to plant.

Thanks,

K.

K., this is a great question. Thanks for asking!

Just because a fruit is seedless doesn’t mean it’s also genetically modified.

Seedless fruits are the product of careful breeding. Just like with purebred dogs or other animals, fruits and veggies can be bred for specific traits. This practice has been done since the beginning of agriculture to produce more desirable produce outcomes, like sweeter fruit with fewer seeds.

This is accomplished through cross-pollination within a species. For example, a sweet squash can cross-pollinate with another squash that has fewer seeds because they are the same species. However, a squash cannot cross-pollinate with a lion, wheat or an ostrich.

This type of breeding typically results in offspring with both sets of genetic traits — in this example, a sweeter squash with fewer seeds.

Things like seedless watermelons, oranges and grapes that are sold as seedless are the result of meticulous breeding of naturally occurring seedless plants. For example, navel oranges are descendants of one seedless orange tree found in Brazil during the 1800s. This unique tree’s fruit was seedless because of a genetic mutation or random change in its DNA sequence.

Since the seedless fruit was so easy to eat, growers continued to grow new trees through cuttings from this original navel orange tree. Now, after a couple hundred years of clipping and growing new trees, you can get navel oranges just about anywhere.

This sort of process is true for other types of seedless fruits and veggies.

However, when it comes to genetic modification, things get a little more complicated.

This process requires taking genes from one species and inserting them into another. For instance, if you wanted to make a frost-resistant pineapple, you could take a polar bear’s genes and insert them into the pineapple’s genetic sequence. This would allow pineapples to be grown in colder climates, but they would also contain the DNA of a totally unrelated species.

Since genetic modification is strictly banned in organic farming, purchasing organic produce — seedless or with seeds — is one way to ensure you’re avoiding GM fruits and veggies.

You can also look for produce with a non-GMO certification.

--Herpes Remedies

Last week, we addressed a common yet serious health concern: oral herpes. And we got a lot of responses. Thanks for writing in! We love to hear from you.

It seems I didn’t cover two supplements that are effective in the fight against cold sores caused by the herpes virus — olive leaf extract and lysine. So today, we will cover them.

Reader Billy writes:

I have had good luck with olive leaf capsules when it comes to fighting off cold sores… and I haven’t had a recurrence with the sores. I have been free of cold sores for several years since taking the olive leaf capsules. Do you know why this seems to work?

Thanks for sharing this helpful information and your important question, Billy.

Olive leaf extract can be effective at combating herpes because it contains a strong antiviral compound called oleuropein. Olive leaf extract has can be used to fight viral and bacterial infections and can boost the immune system. While I was unable to find a study that reports olive leaf extract can cure or prevent herpes, there is a lot of science out there touting its antiviral and immune activity.

If you’re looking to boost your immune system and harness the antiviral power of olive leaf extract, the University of Maryland suggests taking 250–500 mg one–three times daily.

In addition to Billy’s olive leaf extract question, we received several emails about an amino acid called lysine. This powerful compound helped reduce cold sore outbreaks for several readers. And it appears there is good reason for this…

According to several studies, lysine may help reduce the recurrence of cold sore outbreaks. Plus, a few other studies report that it may also shorten the length of the outbreak. It’s thought lysine is able to do this because it alters the replication of the herpes simplex virus.

However, it’s important to note that the body can’t make lysine, so you must get it from food sources like meat, cheese, eggs and poultry. You can also boost your lysine intake through supplementation. Be sure to check with your doctor before starting lysine supplementation, as it can interact with medication and also increase calcium absorption.

Thanks for your questions. Keep them coming! Send all questions to nmoore@lfb.org

Live well,

Natalie Moore
Managing editor, Living Well Daily

Sources

[1] Seedless Fruit – Breeding vs Genetic Modification

[2] Who Put The Navel In Navel Oranges?

[3] Lysine

Natalie Moore

Written By Natalie Moore

Natalie Moore is a dedicated health researcher with a passion for finding healthy, natural, and science-based solutions. After a decade of direct healthcare experience in western and natural medicine, she was involved in public health research before joining Living Well Daily.

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