Here is my top 5 list of why you should choose organic food, I hope it helps making the switch just a bit easier….
It's Better For You! Organic foods are more nutritious!
Although this has been a controversial issue, it is now widely conceded that organic foods have a much higher nutritional content. Because organic fruit and vegetables are grown for longer than conventional foods, their water weight is generally lower and their mineral content is higher. A comparison of conventional and organic apples, potatoes, pears, wheat and sweet corn again put organic food on top, with far greater amounts of calcium, zinc, iron, magnesium, molybendeum and potassium. More fertile soils also offer a better feeding ground for animals. Organic milk has higher levels of Vitamin E, betacarotene, antioxidants zeaxanthine and lutein, and cardio-protective Omega 3 fatty acids.
Research conducted by Dr Charles Benbrook reveals that on average, organic foods contain about one-third higher levels of antioxidants. These phyto-nutrients play a critical role in preventing and reversing cardiovascular, inflammatory and auto-immune diseases. They also have a profound anti-cancer action.
Pesticides and chemicals are harmful to your health
Most conventionally grown foods contain pesticides and other chemical residues. Over 40% of all non-organic fruit, vegetables and bread tested in 2005 contained pesticides according to the Government's Pesticide Residues Committee. The results for some foods were even worse. For example, chemicals were found in all oranges tested, over 90% of bread, 72% of grapes and 95% of pears. A recently published study shows that as little as parts per billion of a common herbicide can damage the reproductive system. In fact, many pesticides are known as 'endocrine disruptors' due to their ability to impair normal hormone signaling. Particularly affected are the immune, hormone and reproductive systems. Endosulfan, a DDT relative, has oestrogenic properties and is found in more food than any other pesticide. Studies by the US Centre for Disease Control found a cocktail of many toxic chemicals in the blood and urine of most Americans they tested. On a simpler level, any toxic substance imbibed will place stress on the primary organ of elimination - the liver. This reduces or slows the detoxification capacity of your body.
It's Better For Your Children!
It is a well-established fact that the foetus, infants and small children are more vulnerable to the toxic effects of pesticides and chemicals. Because many of their vital systems and organs are still continuing to grow and mature, exposure to pesticides and toxic chemicals during critical periods of development can cause permanent, if subtle, damage while causing no harm in adults.
"More than 1 million children between the ages of 1 and 5 ingest at least 15 pesticides every day from fruits and vegetables. More than 600,000 of these children eat a dose of organophosphates that the US government considers unsafe and 61,000 eat doses that exceed benchmark levels by a factor of 10 or more"
There is no time more crucial to consume organic foods than during pregnancy and childhood.
Organic agriculture provides a basis for sustainable farming
By incorporating environmentally sensitive practices such as crop rotation, composting, biological pest control and irrigation management, issues such as soil erosion are avoided. Organic farmers are helping to repair and sustain our soils, waterways and our fragile environment by using long-term farming solutions that support natural ecosystems. The conventional, intensive farming practices exhaust the soil, depleting it of vital minerals and nutrients. The resulting soil degradation is the single biggest threat to sustainability.
Reduced food miles
In simple terms food miles refer to how far your food travels - from paddock to plate - and is an indication of how environmentally friendly your food is. Given that most organic foods are grown locally, food freight is reduced, resulting in a reduced consumption of fuel and energy. Less greenhouse pollution is then released, having a positive impact on the global climate. Organic foods are also able to store carbon (CO2) more effectively in the soil and so further reduce carbon emissions.
Always check where your food comes from. Organic imports (tinned foods, biscuits, etc) can still have massive food miles so choose the local option when possible.
Organic Foods Are GMO Free
So what makes organic food 'organic'? Organic or biodynamic foods are grown without the use of synthetic pesticides, fertilisers, herbicides or livestock feed additives such as antibiotics or steroids. There is no use of genetically modified components and foods are not exposed to irradiation. Organic animals are always free-range and farming practices are environmentally sensitive
Because organic foods are grown for longer, their water content is reduced and their mineral content is higher. This gives a richer, fuller taste to foods.
So just how easy is it to buy organic foods? We are fortunate enough to have fresh, nutritious, delicious organic foods readily available. Try one of the growing ‘army’ of farmers' markets that have popped up recently, or your larger fresh food markets. Many major supermarket chains now stock organic fruit, vegetable and grocery lines. Plus there are numerous on-line options that have home delivery services. Too easy!
So join the growing numbers that are making the switch. Organic products are the world's fastest-growing food sector. Support your environment, reduce climate change and enhance the health and vitality of your family and those you love. Go ahead and indulge in sumptuous, tasty, organic foods and enjoy knowing you are helping to create a better future for our planet.