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Organic Foods

Are the health benefits of organic foods worth the expense?


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2007-05-16 02:57:56
2007-05-16 02:57:56

I would say yes, but not in the way you're thinking. Generally, the pesticide levels in well-washed conventional foods appear to be safe for human consumption. People who do consume conventional foods have small yet detectable levels of pesticides. Switching to entirely organic foods can cause pesticide levels in the body to become undetectable after just a few days. Does this translate to any health benefits? It's not known. Some studies have found slightly larger amounts of certain vitamins in organically grown vegetables. So far the evidence is slight and sketchy. However, what's important when considering organic foods, especially processed, packaged organic foods, is the targeted Demographics of such organic foods: health-conscious people. Many of these packaged organic products are formulated in a way that are superior to conventional products: with whole grains, lots of fiber, little saturated fat, less salt, no hydrogenated oils, etc. These nutritional differences are obvious from the label. Additionally, organic foods are targeted at a demographic willing to spend extra on their food. For such reasons, many premium food products containing expensive, better tasting ingredients are made organically. People may say "organic food tastes better" but this really isn't true because the food is organic. If a grower happened to divide their field in half, grow one side conventionally, the other organically, all other things the same, the food would taste the same. A grower that produces smaller crops will be more willing to undertake more expensive growing methods including organic, knowing they will be able to sell their products at a premium since they would have difficulty competing with a larger grower. As a result, the organic products found on the shelf happed to be made using premium products and more expensive methods and so might taste better, again, not because they are organic. So while these organic foods are "better", it's necessarily not because they're organic. Certain food products are available only in organic varieties. "Wild" or lowbush blueberries, have much higher antioxidant activity as compared to traditional blueberries. Wild blueberries are typically only available in organic varieties. Are wild blueberries worth it? They're perhaps 30 cents extra per pound. Do I buy wild blueberries? Sure. They're smaller and sweeter, and the higher antioxidant content makes me willing to gamble an extra 30 cents. Perhaps down the road, it's shown that such additional antioxidants no added benefits. In such a case, I'll be out 30 cents for something that was a little sweeter. Should you pay more for organic products? It depends. Comparing identical foods, no one's going to say an organic product, say an organic orange, is any WORSE than a conventionally grown one. Consider it a gamble then: you're betting X extra dollars that a organic product will be better for you than a conventional but otherwise identical product. Either you're right and you've gained whatever health benefits organic products happen to have or organic products are identical to conventional products and you've wasted X dollars, though still have consumed a nutritional product which might taste better than the cheaper stuff. In this situation, if you have money to spare, and spending X dollars won't affect how many fruits and vegetables you consume, it might possibly be worth it. On the other hand, if money is tight for you, and purchasing organic fruits and vegetables would force you to consume fewer fruits and vegetables due to the higher cost, organic vegetables are out of the question. In comparing packaged foods with differing nutritional content on the label between conventional and organic products, always consider the nutritional facts and ingredients before considering whether or not something is organic. 100% Whole grain, low sugar waffles made with canola oil and dried fruit bits are most definitely better than enriched wheat flour, sugary, hydrogenated Eggos, whether or not the whole grain ones or the Eggos happen to be organic or not. Whole grains products low in saturated fat and free of trans fat are most definitely more healthful, there's no gamble here. By all means, if you can afford healthier products like this, buy them, whether or not they're organic. Likewise, organic food can also be unhealthful simply because of the product. Conventionally grown lean turkey beats organically grown, corn-fed, hand-raised beef anytime due to the lower cholesterol and saturated fat content. Don't believe that you're doing yourself a favor just because you're eating organic food. Organic milled sugar or organic is still just a bunch of empty calories which could be replaced by better foods, including conventionally grown fruits. So what really contributes to making an organic product worth the expense is not because it's organic, but rather for its nutritional content. In all cases, consider the nutritional content between the organic product and its alternative first. If one comes out on top, no question, buy the most nutritional product regardless of its organic-ness. If they appear equal nutritionally, consider the added cost of the organic product and decide how it will impact you based on your financial situation.


Related Questions

Organic foods are foods that are grown all naturally with no pesticides, or sprays that could affect your health.

Organic foods are great for many reasons, from helping the environment to improving your health. The main benefits to your health include the fact that you will no longer be consuming pesticides and insecticides, which have been shown to be detrimental in the long run. Also, studies have shown that organic foods tend to have more nutrients and antioxidants than their conventional counterparts

The benefits of selling both non-organic and organic foods lie in the same shop attracting both those customers who want organic as well as those who prefer non-organic products.

Organic foods contain no chemical additives, preservatives, or GMOs. They are raised without use of synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, and herbicides.

Yes, health food stores carry natural and organic foods. Foods labeled natural are not necessary organic. In order to be totally organic, foods must be labeled "100% organic." Foods labeled "organic" only have to be 70% organic and the remaining ingredients can be anything, including preservatives, additives, and GMOs. Foods labeled "natural" could be almost anything, as natural is not clearly defined. Health food stores are likely to have some of each of these labels.

Organic foods are those grown without the use of synthetic fertilizer or pesticides. When these foods are processed, they do not contain additives or preservatives that are found in non-organic foods. Their benefits are that they are free of additives, preservatives, and pesticide residue (unless there are trace amounts that blew on to them from non-organic crops), and are free of GMOs.

Colored foods has no benefits for human health except that it makes the food look colorful and more appealing.

Yes, organic foods are good for the environment because of cultivation and nutritiousness. Organic foods are grown in environmentally friendly ways that prioritize flavor and health over appearance and yield. Their production minimizes the occurrence of environmental stresses such as erosion and pollution and health problems such as cancer and obesity.

$13.15 an hour is the lowest and you get health benefits

There are at least two studies that suggest fruit flies fed organic foods lived longer. That does not necessarily mean that people who eat organic foods live longer, but since organic foods do not have the additives and preservatives that may be harmful to health, and synthetic fertilizers and pesticides are not used on organically-grown foods, it is certainly possible that people who eat them live longer.

The advantage is that organic foods do not contain the trace amounts of harmful chemicals present in conventional foods that can cause health problems. Also, organic foods are better for the environment. That's because they don't release pollutants into the environment like conventional agriculture does.

Many grocery stores sale "health" food and organic foods. But there are other store such as the Earth store, which is an organic store, and they except coupons.

Non organic foods themselves would do no harm to you unless they contain harmful additives and/or preservatives, chemicals from synthetic pesticides that were sprayed on them, etc. It is also possible that non organic foods are genetically modified and the health effects of GMOs are not known, though there is some anecdotal evidence that they can have adverse health effects in animals and people.

Organic foods are generally more expensive than non-organic foods.

Organic food is not very popular because it is so expensive. People don't realize that it is worth to pay the extra bit of money, because the health benefits are so much greater than non-organic foods. They seem to be getting more and more popular however.

Many options are provided. Some foods target renal health; others target glucose levels and some are even for weight loss. Different foods provide different benefits.

Whole Foods is the best. They have a wide selection. Organic foods may also be found in grocery stores in limited amounts and in health food stores. Organic produce may also be available in season at farmers markets. Some organic foods are sold online, but they are usually much more expensive.

Non-organic foods often contain additives, GMOs, preservatives, etc. which may not be good for health.

Empty calories are foods that are high in calories but do not make your stomach feel full. Because these foods are often high in fat and sugar there are no health benefits to them.

There are no reasons not to eat organic as far as health goes. Something that often is prohibitive is cost. Organic foods are often more costly than non-organic foods, but if you visit local farmers or farmers markets, even that might not be a factor.

Non Organic foods are the opposite of Organic foods. Organic foods are produced without GMOs, artificial preservatives and pesticides, while Non Organic foods are grown and produced with GM-Os artificial preservatives and pesticides.

Organic foods have many advantages. Here are just a few:Health: Organic foods are produced without the use of pesticides that could cause serious illnessesGood for the animals: People who eat organic are happy to know the animals are not confined to a caged life, pumped full of hormones, or treated badly.Environmental Safety: Harmful chemicals are not used in organic farming, and there is minimal soil, air, and water pollution being produced. Also, many organic farmers donate/support causes to help save the planet.Better taste: Most people strongly believe organic foods taste better than non-organic foods. This could be because they are much fresher.Many people are realizing the many benefits/advantages of eating organic and are trying to do their part by buying some/most/all of their foods organic.

Well the benefits of serving organic food in school is so you wont get poisoned or anything like that. It's more healthy than other kinds of foods an not so much grease.

Circumstances that may limit organic foods are they are more labor intensive to grow, the shelf life of processed organic foods may be shorter than non-organic foods, and they cost more than non-organic foods.

You can buy organic food at health and whole foods stores, your local grocery stores, and farmer's markets.

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