WHY Buy Natural and Organic Products
- Tuesday, 01 July 2008
There is growing evidence that eating and using natural and organic products may be better for your overall health, wellness and even taste-buds!
Nutrition: Many people believe organic food contains higher levels of vitamins and essential minerals such as calcium, magnesium, iron and chromium as well as antioxidants and other phytonutrients. Studies are currently being conducted to help confirm this.
Engineered Additives: Organic foods do not contain many of the food additives thought to be (at least in part) responsible for some of our health epidemics. On the list of ingredients banned by some organic certifying agencies are hydrogenated fat, trans-fats, artificial sweeteners and monosodium glutamate (MSG).
Pesticides: Organic framing does not allow the use of conventional pesticides, thus minimizing poisonous residues found on organic products. An article published in the Food Additives and Contaminants journal stated a 2002 study which found far less chemical pesticide residues on organic produce then its conventional counterparts, if at all.
Genetically Modified (or Engineered) Organisms (GMO): Organic certification does not allow for the use of genetically modified ingredients. Regular food laws do not have this ban.
Drugs: Conventional livestock may be injected with hormones and antibiotics, which in turn remain in the meat itself and its by-products (i.e. dairy foods) even when we consume them. Organic livestock is guaranteed to be free of injected hormones and antibiotics.
Oversight: Organic food suppliers (and farms) are routinely inspected and must be re-certifed on an annual basis. This constant supervision ensures that standards for health and quality (well over and above those of the FDA and USDA) are being consistently adhered to.
Care for animals: The welfare of livestock is of great concern to the organic movement. As such, there are strict rules regarding the feeding, housing and proper treatment of animals.
Radiation: Organic foods are not allowed to be irradiated. Irradiation, a process often used to sterilize food in the grocery industry, may negatively impact or alter enzymes, and other nutrients found in the food.
Water: Some scientists estimate that pesticides contaminate a large portion of the ground water in over half of the U.S. (geographically). Therefore, these pesticides can potentially contaminate the drinking water sources of many Americans.
Pollution and Energy: Organic farmers help to minimize pollution and energy usage by using natural fertilizers, such as manure and compost, on their land.
Energy: Organic farmers, who use natural fertilizers like manure and compost, avoid the energy waste involved in the manufacture of synthetic fertilizers.
Taste: Many people prefer organic food because they believe it tastes better. A great example of this is when it comes to meat, espcially beef and poultry as well as produce.