Organic foods are quickly becoming recognized as a reasonable alternative in this chemical loaded world. The focus on environmentally sound agricultural methods and prolonging agriculture is getting the attention of many who are now concerned about what theyre eating as well as the environment. Organic foods are what is happening. They are becoming a part of many traditional diets, and are viewed as an important and essential part of a healthy diet plan. They are also viewed as a reliable and safe alternative to the issues regarding conventionally grown, processed, and packaged foods.
Many organic followers believe that once youve tasted organic foods you cant go back to typically grown foods the taste is unbelievable. People are now looking for good food with real nutrition and quality and theyre finding it in organic foods. The realization of a need for quality food supplies is awakening interest in other areas such as environmental stewardship. These concerns range from recycling your pop cans to selecting environmentally friendly household cleaning products.
Learning organics provides many easy and interesting ideas that can help you do your part in preserving a healthy, prosperous environment for the people in your family. Body Eating organic foods is the key feature of the natural passion that is taking over the country. Once an interest, organically grown foods seemed to be a major part of the diet of most people. Now with the growing attention on healthy habits and programs that help prevent illness, organic foods are quickly becoming the vital ingredients of the diet in typical America.
Organic foods are the fastest growing style in the food industry. In fact, the demand for organically grown foods has increased 20% over last year. Sales of organic produce, for example, are now a multi-billion dollar industry. (Fisher, P. 22) Shopping the Co op has for a long time been the best place to find organic foods. Now with increased consumer interest organic specialty supermarkets are popping up all over the nation. Major supermarkets are also stepping up to the demand, offering organic food departments and organic options in the produce sections of the store.
The look of the co-op is expanding to reflect the needs of added customers, and many gourmet oriented offerings are quickly becoming a part of the every day offerings at the co op, which only helps to make food shopping an increasing interesting and fun experience. As far as costs are concerned, those consumers jumping on the organic bandwagon will pay more for organic foods, but they believe that the benefits far outweigh the 5% to 20% increase in cost. The trend in organic food is growing and as competition increases in order to address skyrocketing customer demand, prices will stabilize.
Here are a few of the nutrients that were found in higher levels in the organic foods: OChromium is a micronutrient that is low in Western diets. Its deficiency is associated with the onset of adult diabetes and atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries). Chromium was found to be higher in organic foods by an average of 78%. OSelenium is one of the antioxidant nutrients that protect us from damage by environmental chemicals. It is protective against cancers and heart disease. It was found to be an average of 390% higher in organic foods.
OCalcium, needed for strong bones, averaged 63% higher in organics. OBoron, which has been shown to help prevent osteoporosis (along with calcium), averaged 70% more. OLithium, which is used to treat certain types of depression, was 188% higher. OMagnesium, which reduces mortality from heart attacks, keeps muscles from spasming, and eases the symptoms of PMS, averaged 138% more. OIn short, many of the minerals that I most often prescribe to my patients are found in much higher levels in organic foods. ORGANIC VS NON-ORGANIC Variations in Mineral Content in Vegetables.
% of dry weightMilliequivalents per 100 gm dry weightTrace Elements parts per million dry matter Ash PhosCalMagnPotassSodBoronMangIronCoppCobalt SNAP BEANS Organic10. 450. 3640. 560. 099. 78. 67360227690. 26 Inorganic4. 040. 2215. 514. 829. 10. 01021030. 00 CABBAGE Organic10. 380. 3860. 043. 6148. 320. 4421394480. 15 Inorganic6. 120. 1817. 515. 653. 70. 872200. 40. 00 LETTUCE Organic24. 180. 4871. 019. 3176. 512. 237169516600. 19 Inorganic7. 010. 2216. 013. 153. 70. 061930. 00 TOMATOES Organic14. 200. 3523. 059. 2148. 36. 536681938530. 63 Inorganic6. 070. 164. 54. 558. 80. 051100. 00 SPINACH Organic28. 560.
5296. 0203. 9257. 069. 5881171584320. 25 Inorganic12. 380. 2747. 546. 984. 60. 8121190. 050. 20 Other studies have looked at vitamin levels of food plants treated with certain pesticides. They showed that application of some pesticides would significantly lower the vitamin levels in the plants they were applied to. This is different than the notion that plants raised with chemicals are low in nutrients because the soil is used up. This shows that chemicals actually reduce the amount of nutrients in plants after application. The nutrients most often affected are vitamin C, beta carotene, and the B vitamins.
These nutrients are vitally necessary for the body to withstand the onslaught of chemical toxins. When they studied organic food for mineral levels, the researchers also looked for the amount of the heavy metals aluminum, cadmium, lead and mercury. Aluminum has been implicated for years in the development of Alzheimers disease. Its content in organic food averaged 40% less that in commercial foods. Lead toxicity, which has been in the new a lot lately, can adversely affect our childrens IQ. It averaged 29% lower in organic foods. Mercury, which can cause neurological damage, averaged 25% lower in organic foods.
(Aldrich, P. 1) Besides the lower levels of heavy metals, there are the chemical residues themselves. The big question is whether or not the accumulation of pesticide residues in non-organic foods is a real health concern or not. Studies have never been able to conclusively show a direct correlation between residues in food and a decline of human health, but there are numerous problems in doing any such study. The first is that you would need a population of people who are free of chemical residues to compare to, and no one has been able to find a group.
According to an constant EPA study of fat samples taken from surgeries and autopsies across the country, we are all loaded with chemical residues. Similar studies done on other countries all show the same results. (Baer, P. 1) The clearest studies that we have about pesticide residues and disease are those looking at breast cancer. In the last few years there have been a chain of studies, each building upon the other, looking at the level of ddt, dde, and pcb in women, They have shown that chemical residues in the serum and fat cells of women greatly increase the risk of breast cancer.
Since breast cancer is a major killer of women in this country it is reasonable to say that avoidance of pesticide residues in food could save numerous lives and reduce our health care cost dramatically. After 50 years of Better Living through Chemistry scientists have finally shown that breast cancer is associated with pesticide residue, they have yet to prove that it causes numerous other maladies. I am not waiting for them to prove it before I change my eating habits. (Fisher, P. 12) As a clinician who sees numerous environmentally poisoned people with health problems, I am convinced of an association between chemicals and disease.
The biggest source of exposure for many people is their workplace, then their homes, followed by air, food and water. Of these the easiest to control are our home environment and our diet. Eating organic food, drinking pure water, and watching our airborne chemical exposure can have profound effects on our health. My friend Steve, who has now gone through an extensive protocol to remove the pesticide residue from his body and had regained his health, will back me up on that. When he added up the costs of his illness in time off work and medical expenses, he found that eating organic food was much less expensive than eating non-organic foods.
He is eating better foods now, and my organic garden continues to grow, along with my children. Conclusion The only real problem with organic grown foods is that they are more expensive, and this is because the growers of this produce experience more loss since they dont use pesticides on their crops. As for the health benefits just think, you wouldnt want to put any of these chemical pesticides straight into your body, but that is essentially what is happening when you consume these foods that have been sprayed with pesticides.
Over a period of time these can cause harm, and this is why organic foods are so highly recommended for people trying becoming healthier. The organic industry has seen an explosion of growth in the past few years. In 1992, sales had already reached $1. 5 billion(Fisher, P. 16). Today the market is worth almost ten times that, and by 2009 its predicted the market will double again to be worth close to $32 billion. Consumer demand for natural, organic foods is booming and shows no signs of slowing down. Look for labels that say certified or authentic organic.
Labels that say all natural or naturally grown are OK, but they are not the same as certified organic which demands the achievement of certain regulations. Producers and handlers must be certified by a USDA official certifying agent to sell, label, or represent their products as 100 percent organic or made with organic.
References 1)Aldrich, Samuel R. Which System Can Meet the Food Needs in Todays World? Conventional V. Organic Farming. 09 Dec. 2006 . 2)Baer, Firman E. Firman E. Baer Report. Orgnanic Vs. Inorganic. Rutgers University. 12 Dec. 2006 . 3)Fisher, Helen S. Food Safety.
Detroit: Gale Group, 2004. 1-29. 4)Lexile. Good Food? Good Food? Ethical Food. The Economist 9 Dec. 2006: 12. 5)Wal-Mart Charged with Selling Nonorganic Food as Organic. U. S. Newsire 14 Nov. 2006: 17-18. 6)Corbett, John R. The Biochemical Mode of Actions of Pesticides. New York: Academic P, 1974. 2-16. 7)Dunn-Georgiou, Elisha. Everything You Need to Know About Organic Foods. New York: Rosen Publications, 2002. 65-82. 8)Lipson, Elaine. The Organic Foods Sourcebook. Chicago: Contemporary Books, 2001. 15-42. 9)Rousseau, George S. Organic Form: TH Elife of an Idea.