Organic foods are generally grown without pesticides, artificial fertilizers, irradiation or biotechnology. Animals on organic farms are fed organic foods, are not confined all the time and are not given hormones or synthetic growth hormones. These foods must adhere to the USDA standards set for organic foods.
Buying organic is healthier for our bodies and for our environment. Organic foods have more nutrients for our bodies. Although lately this has been challenged. Foods that are organic may contain similar vitamins to non organic foods however the conventional foods still have the extra pesticides. Some studies have linked pesticides to headaches, cancer and birth defects. It can be even more serious in children and fetuses because of their less developed immune systems.
Scientists are also concerned in the use of hormones in meats and dairy products. These antibiotics get into our systems and cause us to become resistant to them. Then when we really need an antibiotic for an illness they may not be as effective.
Organic farming is also better for the environment. It not only reduces the amount of pollutants in our ground water but creates richer soil. We have all heard about the chemicals that are ending up in our tap water these days. You can help decrease the amounts of pesticides in our water supply by buying organic.
For most of history we ate organic foods. During the 20th century processed foods and pesticides were brought into the food supply. This was because people were wanting more convenience. This must change.
We all need to start choosing organic foods for our families. Not only for our bodies but for our earth. Buying organic can be more expensive however our family believes that in the long run we will be paying less for doctor visits by being healthier. My advice is to buy what you can afford. See my lists below for foods that you should always buy organic and which foods you can save your money on by buying conventional. Some foods have natural pesticides and therefore need less chemicals to keep them bug free.
Here is a list of foods that you should definitely consider buying organic because of their high pesticide content. The Environmental Working Group calls these foods the dirty dozen. They include, peaches, strawberries, nectarines, apples, spinach, celery, pears, sweet bell peppers, cherries, potatoes, lettuce and imported grapes.
Foods that do not have as high of a risk of pesticide contamination are onions, avocados, sweet corn, pineapple, mango, asparagus, sweet peas, kiwi, cabbage, eggplant, papaya, watermelon, broccoli, tomato, sweet potato and bananas.
I know that organic foods are expensive. In our family we buy what we can afford. Do your best to buy organic and your body and the Earth will appreciate it.