How Organic Food Affects Your Body

By Rebecca Carden — May 12, 2015

Organic Produce

How organic food affects your body.

When we’re talking about organic food, most of us can agree that it’s probably better for our bodies than veggies sprayed with pesticides. It just seems like common sense doesn’t it?

Why would one knowingly consume chemicals when eating food and be ok with it? It defies logic.

But factors like the price and convenience make non-organic goods pretty tough to resist.

According to a new report conducted by the Center for Sustaining Agriculture and Natural Resources at Washington State University, organic produce, meat and grains contain more protective antioxidants, less pesticide residue and lower levels of toxic metals such as cadmium than food raised in traditional ways.

Another new study by Newcastle University on organic versus conventional crops also confirms that organic farming methods do have a positive impact on health. Results again found substantially higher levels of antioxidants and lower levels of pesticides in organic crops versus conventional crops.

Antioxidants have been linked to a lower risk of cancer and other diseases in humans. Plants naturally produce antioxidants to defend themselves against pests and diseases. When pesticides are applied though, plants lose the need to generate antioxidants for their own defences which is really interesting.

Significant findings from the study published on July 14 in the British Journal of Nutrition include:

  • Organic crops contain an average of 17 percent more antioxidants than conventionally grown crops.
  • Some of the organic crops, including fruits, vegetables, and grains, had as much as 60 percent higher concentrations of antioxidant compounds than conventional crops.
  • The level of flavanones, which are associated with a lower risk of stroke, were 69 percent higher in organic foods tested.
  • Pesticide residues were found to be three to four times more likely in conventional crops compared to organic.
  • Overall levels of pesticides were found to be ten to 100 times lower in organic food than in conventionally produced food.

Children’s growing brains and bodies are far more susceptible to toxins than adults. Choosing organic helps feed their bodies without the exposure to pesticides and genetically-modified organisms, both of which have a relatively short history of use (and therefore safety). The below image shows how after swapping to a diet of only organic food for 2 weeks, all chemicals leave a child’s body. This experiment was conducted on a family in Sweden.

There are even suggestions that avoiding the heavy metals like cadmium found in pesticides can even help prevent dementia related diseases like Alzheimers which accumulate in our tissues.

When it comes to animal products, conventional meat and dairy are the highest risk foods for contamination by harmful substances. More than 90% of the pesticides Americans consume are found in the fat and tissue of meat and dairy products!

The EPA reports that majority of pesticide intake comes from meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and dairy products because these foods are all high on the food chain. For instance, a large fish that eats a smaller fish that eats even smaller fish accumulates all of the toxins of the chain, especially in fatty tissue. Conventional cows, chickens, and pigs are often fed animal by-products, fish meal, and grains that are heavily and collectively laden with toxins and chemicals.

So with armed with all this knowledge, is choosing to eat organic really that expensive?

In the short term yes it can be a little more costly but long term, as far as we’re concerned, there is no argument. The choice is clear.

You can’t put a price on good health and wellbeing.

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