DEFINITION OF ORGANIC FOOD:
There was a time when you would only find organic food in specialty health food stores, but now you can buy these items just about anywhere. You can find organic food in big chain grocery stores, farmers’ markets and corner stores. In addition to organic produce, you can find organic foods such as meat, cheese, cereal and granola bars stacked on most supermarket shelves
WHY IS ORGANIC FOOD BETTER FOR YOUR HEALTH?
Organic food is food that is produced using methods of organic farming. So, what does organic farming entail? With organic farming, produce is generally grown without synthetic pesticides, artificial fertilizers, irradiation (a form of radiation used to kill bacteria) or biotechnology. The livestock on organic farms are also fed organically-grown feed, are free to roam most of the time and are not given antibiotics or synthetic growth hormones.
Most fruits and vegetables are loaded with essential nutrients that are good for your body and mind. However, commercial demands and competition in the market often make farmers use fertilizers and pesticides in order to increase their yield. According to nutritionist Naini Setalvad, ‘Today growth hormones are injected in fruits, vegetables, pulses, poultry and meat to make them larger and plumper. Humans are consuming these products thereby eating these chemicals too. Research has documented and proven that these hormones and chemicals are what are causing the humungous (obesity) sizes in people today. The chemicals and the preservatives are the cause of psychological disorders, depression, mood swings, hyper activity and irritability that have now become a common phenomenon. Infertility in men, problems in conceiving, early puberty among children as young as eight is another by product of consuming such foods. It is difficult, if not impossible for us to stand up and fight against such unhealthy practices adopted by farmers. But, that doesn’t mean we have to continue eating foods laced with pesticides. Organic farming is taking the country by storm and more and more people are choosing to eat organically grown foods. Let’s learn more about the process of organic farming and why it is healthier than conventional food.
ORAGNIC FOODS & YOUR HEALTH :
This is probably the most obvious but there are two different aspects of your health that are impacted by your choosing organic food: what you’re NOT getting and what you are,
THE BIGGEST ADVANTAGES OF ORGANIC FOOD INCLUDE:
According to a State of Science Review done in 2008, organic food hasmore nutritional superiority than its non-organic counterparts.
STRONGER, MORE ENERGETIC BODY:
No pesticides, chemicals, or processed additives bogging down your system means a smaller risk of disease, illness, and disorders in yourself. Nothing leaves you feeling tired and gross like unhealthy junk food.
IT TASTES BETTER:
True, it may not taste as good if you’re accustomed to the addictive qualities of junk food additives, such as processed sugar and MSG. But after just a short time of your body experiencing truly healthy food, you’ll be craving it. No, really, you will. And all the crap will start having a bad after-taste.
YES, IT’S CHEAPER:
Although some organic food and products are more expensive, you actualy WILL save money in several ways:
- Whole foods help to prevent major and minor diseases and illnesses, meaning lower health care costs and less likelihood of missing work. One of the hidden advantages of organic food.
- Your brain tells your body to eat partially based on the nutrients it receives. Now that we know eating organic means more nutrients, it means your brain won’t tell your body to keep eating like it does with junk food.
- Buying organic food from the farmer’s market is incredibly inexpensive. You also have the option of bartering with farmers for good or services.
- Growing your own can become free when you get your organic vegetable garden in place!
- Andthis might not be one of the advantages of organic FOOD, but when it comes tonon-foodproducts, organic merchandise are generally a higher quality, so you don’t need to buy a new cotton shirt every year when the old one falls apart.
- Want some practical tips on making organic food cheaper? Read more about how to make organic food affordable here.
SAFE FROM DANGEROUS PESTICIDES:
Chemical pesticides has been linked to breast, prostrate and other cancers, non-Hodgkins lymphoma, leukemia, infertility, convulsions, immune and endocrine disorders, Parkinson’s disease and depression. Just to name a few!
SAFE FROM SCARY CHEMICALS:
Herbicides and fertilizers have been connected with various cancers, immune disorders, infertility, cardiac disease, hypertension, and numerous other diseases.
ORGANIC FRUITS & VEGETABLES:
We know that organic fruits and vegetables are better for our bodies and the planet, along with the farmers that grow them and the overall food industry. The more foods are produced naturally in an organic manner without chemicals and pesticides, the more everyone benefits.Plus, there’s nothing like taking a taste of a delicious apple that has no waxy coating or slicing into a cucumber that doesn’t have that slimy, waxy finish. But organic isn’t always easy to buy on a budget, so that’s why choosing organic foods from “The Dirty Dozen” list each year is so important. Foods on this list are the most heavily sprayed crops of all foods, while foods on “The Clean Fifteen” List are normally a bit safer with less harmful sprays administered.
Every year the Environmental Working Group release a new “Dirty Dozen” list to us based on their evaluations of crops each year that rank highest in pesticides. They’ve recently just shared the 2015 version with the public, so we can head to the produce section with a bit more knowledge and ease. Organic produce has five digit code, which is determined by a 9 in front of the four numbers that make up the PLU, or they will be labeled organic if there is no code (such as on packaged greens).
PROS OF ORGANIC FOODS:
- Pesticides are not used in organic foods; natural compounds are used instead. Many health risks, such as cancer, are associated with pesticide use.
- Organic foods must meet many USDA qualifications before they can be marketed as organic.
- Use of organic compounds on animals means that they are not fed antibiotics or growth hormones and that they are fed organic food
CONS OF ORGANIC FOODS:
- The downside to organic is that these foods tend to be more expensive. This can lead to a difficult decision in the grocery store between apples that look the same but vary in price.
- Organic produce may spoil faster than fruits and vegetables sprayed with pesticides. Because they don’t have the wax-like coverings on them, they can go bad more quickly.