I like to research and make conclusions about specific topics, and all about organic and sustainable production is one of those.
What is organic food?, The European Union of Organic Agriculture says “An organic product is in which production is based on a sustainable system that respects the environment, with a high biodiversity level, preserving all natural resources and high standards on animal well-being. And its principles are;
· NO to the use of chemical pesticides and synthetic fertilizer
· NO to the use of antibiotics and hormones for growing stimulation in animals
· NO to GMO products
· Crop rotation for an efficient use of soil and resources.
Now, is there a difference in its nutrition value?, The Mayo Clinic in the US has declared that there is not a significant difference between organic and conventional ones. The British Journal of Nutrition published results of about 343 studies done in this regard, and they concluded that organic food have 69% more antioxidants and less cadmium (toxic metal) and obviously, pesticides.
What about PESTICIDES?. The World Health Organization estimates that there are 3 million cases of poisoning and up to 220 thousand deaths every year. The most important effects in health are asthma, cancer, allergies, hypersensitivity, hormonal disruption, reproductive and fetus development issues. The Glyphosate and Organophosphate are the most widely used.
But let’s be honest, the environment where we live in, the exposure to pesticides and heavy metals is unavoidable, they are present in the air and water, but is there a way to reduce the exposure?… in certain way, yes, but mostly, knowing the crops that have shown higher concentration of pesticides, and here we have the list of the Dirty Dozen:
And in the other hand, the list of the Clean Fifteen, which have less or null concentration of pesticides:
2. Yellow corn (Mostly GMO)
4. Frozen pea (sweet)
15. Honeydew melon
The purpose of these lists is for us to know which products worth to invest more $$$$ and buy organic, and those in which is not necessary.
And, what about animal products?
Regarding meat, many studies have concluded that meat and animal derivatives have 50% more fatty acids (Omega-3), and milk has less saturated fat compared to non-organic. This is basically because they are grass-fed and caged-free. In addition, hormones and antibiotics (only approved) are not used.
Even though, there is no study showing a remarkable difference in quality between organic and conventional, the reality is that every day we know more and more about people suffering from gluten intolerance, allergies, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, ADHA (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) and autism. Probably, many of those who are “celiac” or have gluten intolerance is due to pesticides and all genetic manipulation done in wheat.
What do you think about it?