Organic foods are raised without chemicals and processed without additives. Under standards adopted by the U.S. Agriculture Dept. (USDA) in 2000 and fully effective in 2002, synthetic fertilizers and pesticides and antibiotics may not be used in raising organic foods, and the use of irradiation, biotechnology, and sewer-sludge fertilizer is also banned.
A four-year, European-Union funded study found that organic fruit and vegetables contain up to 40% more antioxidants; organic produce had higher levels of beneficial minerals like iron and zinc; milk from organic herds contained up to 90% more antioxidants. The study also said that eating organic foods can even help to increase the nutrient intake of people who don’t eat the recommended five servings of fruit and vegetables a day.
According to Dr. Joseph Mercola, food grown in healthier soil, with natural fertilizers and no chemicals, simply has to be more nutritious. To back this up, he sites two studies.
A 2003 study in the Journal of Agricultural Food Chemistry found that organic foods are better for fighting cancer. And in 2005, scientists found that, compared to rats that ate conventional diets, organically fed rats experienced various health benefits such as improved immune system status, better sleeping habits, less weight and were slimmer than rats fed other diets, and higher vitamin E content in their blood.
Moreover, a study outlined in a 2003 Environmental Health Perspectives article, children “eating organic fruits and vegetables had six times lower levels of pesticide byproducts in their blood versus children eating conventional produce.”
Non-Organic fruits and vegetables are grown with synthetic pesticides and fertilizer.
Studies are showing that more than 90% of children in the US “have detectable residues of at least one neurotoxic pesticide in their urine.” Something is called neurotoxic when it is poisonous to your brain and nervous system.
Mindfully.org says that pesticides may also be changing our hormones and reproductive systems. They’ve been found to change the hormones of animals in tests and in the wild so it stands to reason they are harming humans also.
A recent UK government report found that chickens raised in the widespread, non-organic fashion, have a 23.4% chance of being contaminated with salmonella, a bacteria responsible for food poisoning. However, the chance of an organic flock having salmonella? Only 4.4%.
Choosing organic foods over non-organic foods helps you to avoid dangerous pesticides, antibiotics, and hormones. It also supplies you with more nutrients that promote good health.
You diet doesn’t have to be boring or tasteless. Organic fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains are full of flavor and can be prepared in numerous, interesting dishes. Great recipes abound on healthy eating websites – just check them out! Moreover, eating whole foods lessens the problem of weight-gain and you’ll feel better. And the best benefit of all is that by choosing mostly whole foods, you are investing in your health and the health of your family.