As a healthy foods advocate, many people often ask me whether or not it really makes a difference if they eat organic food? My response has always been an emphatic yes! There are several reasons why eating organic is not only recommended but also essential to maintaining personal vibrant health and the health of our planet.
Primarily, organic foods are grown without the use of pesticides, fungicides, herbicides and inorganic fertilizers, which not only protects the food, but also preserves the soil, keeping it well-stocked with vital nutrients that end up in what you eat. Chemical pesticides, fungicides, herbicides and other inorganic additives show up in the food when it is used in the growing/raising process which will accumulate in your body when you eat them. These chemicals also interrupt the microbiotic activity in the soil according to The Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association (MOFGA). MOFGA also documents that: “Natural, undisturbed soil is alive with microbiotic organisms that exist in harmony with the native plant life and the inorganic minerals that provide the soil’s substrate.”
If avoiding chemicals and preserving soil nutrients are not good enough reasons, maybe avoiding GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) ingredients would be? Over the years, the amount of pesticides, fungicides, herbicides and inorganic fertilizers used on crops grown in the United State and Canada has also rapidly accelerated due to the introduction of GMOs into our food supply. Happily, Organic foods DO NOT contain GMO ingredients.
It’s not just the avoidance of chemicals that is of concern but also the food and ingredients made from GMO crops that are strongly questionable for health safety reasons.
Against strong opposition from the scientific community, the FDA approved GMOs in 1992 for commercial use labeling them as GRAS or “Generally Recognized as Safe.” However, the GRAS label was given without meeting the guidelines of undergoing a substantial amount of peer-reviewed published studies and by achieving an overwhelming consensus among the scientific community that the product is safe. As of today, food grown and manufactured from GMO ingredients has not been adequately tested on the human body and there is no clear scientific evidence supporting its safety for human consumption. In fact there is credible evidence showcasing how GMO foods are indeed harmful. Another disturbing point is that foods containing GMO ingredients do not have to be labeled and there are no required review processes or regulation protocols currently in practice.
We have essentially become human guinea pigs and there are more and more accounts of people getting sick. According to a report published by the Institute for Responsible Technology, The FDA’s “Non-Regulation” Of GM(O) Foods, “Their influence on health has been largely ignored, but recent studies show serious problems. Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) have been linked to thousands of toxic or allergic-type reactions, thousands of sick, sterile, and dead livestock, and damage to virtually every organ and system studied in lab animals. Nearly every independent animal feeding safety study shows adverse or unexplained effects.” This information has been well documented in Jeffrey M. Smith’s book, Genetic Roulette: The Documented Health Risks of Genetically Engineered Foods.
When it comes to making a decision between organic and conventional, the choice is clear – choose organic for your own health and for the health of the planet and future generations. If money is an issue, the last place you want to cut back on is on the quality of the food you buy and consume. After all you are what you eat, and replacing organic food with mass-produced chemically enhanced produce and ingredients will cause your body more harm down the road, which in turn increases the dollar amount you spend on healthcare. Spending a little more money now will save you a lot of money and illnesses later. Also anecdotally and from personal experience organic food just tastes better!