Hello, My Name Is Organic. I'm "Healthy"?!

The world has gone organic crazy. I get it. Pesticide free and naturally grown sound great. They are great, but the perception is that if you buy organic you are healthy. Is it true?

"I only buy organic". The phrase that states social status or one's strong desire to seem overly healthy. Unfortunately, the people I hear boldly proclaim this miss the mark. They buy organic because they believe it is the new "it" diet, like a Weight Watchers. Organic food is not "diet" food. People seem to know very little about what organic really means and how it affects your overall health.

This side-by-side comparison is from The Mayo Clinic. (seems a tad biased toward organic)
Apply chemical fertilizers to promote plant growth.Apply natural fertilizers, such as manure or compost, to feed soil and plants.
Spray insecticides to reduce pests and disease.Use beneficial insects and birds, mating disruption or traps to reduce pests and disease.
Use herbicides to manage weeds.Rotate crops, till, hand weed or mulch to manage weeds.
Give animals antibiotics, growth hormones and medications to prevent disease and spur growth.Give animals organic feed and allow them access to the outdoors. Use preventive measures — such as rotational grazing, a balanced diet and clean housing — to help minimize disease.

The difference between conventional farming and organic farming is the pre-harvest care.

Now that you know the difference here is the skinny on the health comparison. Organic food has not been proven to be more nutritious than food produced by conventional farming. They contain comparable nutrient densities, the calories are the same, and they are processed the same in the body.

My take away message about organic food-

  • I am not opposed to organic. If I need it, it is on sale, and it looks good; I will buy it.
  • Organic and conventional fruits and vegetables need to be washed before consumption.
  • NOT all organic food is healthy

A 100% organic burger with organic sweet potato fries. These will still make me fat, increase my risk of heart disease, and make me feel bloated and sluggish if I eat them enough. (Trust me; I took one for the team on this one. :P)

My father-in-law says you either trust the science of conventional farming or you don't. That is the heart of the organic movement's argument. I trust the science. I will continue to purchase all my conventional fruits and veggies. Eating real food, not processed food, is more important for health than conventional or organic. My real food and healthy activity level will keep me as healthy if not more healthy than my "only organic" counterparts.

What Are Your Thoughts On Organic?
Good, Bad, or Indifferent

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