Healthy eating Organic food: what you need to know

What does "organic" mean? The term "organic" refers to the method of cultivation and processing of agricultural products. While regulations vary from country to country, in the US, biological plants must be grown without the use of synthetic herbicides, pesticides and fertilizers, or bioengineering genes (GMOs).

Organic livestock kept for meat, eggs and dairy products should be kept in living conditions that suit their natural behavior (such as the ability to graze) and fed organic food and groceries. They must not receive antibiotics, growth hormones or animal products. Organic vs Inorganic

Organic products: Conventional products:

Cultivated on natural manure (manure, compost). It is grown with synthetic or chemical fertilizers. Weeds are controlled naturally (plant rotation, hand harvesting, mulching and cultivation) or with organically approved herbicides. Weeds are regulated by chemical herbicides. Pests are regulated by natural methods (birds, insects, traps) and natural pesticides. Pests are regulated by synthetic pesticides

Organic meat, dairy products, eggs: I grew up only with meat, milk, eggs

The animal is provided with all biological, hormonal and GMO free feed. Livestock receive growth hormones for faster growth as well as inorganic GMO feed. The disease can be prevented by natural methods such as clean house, rotary grazing and healthy nutrition. Antibiotics and drugs are used to prevent animal diseases. Cattle must have access outside. Cattle may or may not have access out. Benefits of organic food

The way you grow or grow your diet can have a huge impact on your mental and emotional health as well as the environment. Organic foods often contain more beneficial nutrients, such as antioxidants, than their normal-growth counterparts, and people with food allergies, chemicals, or preservatives may find that their symptoms subside or disappear if they eat only organic foods.

Organic products contain small amounts of pesticides. Chemicals such as synthetic fungicides, herbicides and insecticides are widely used in traditional agriculture and residues remain in (and in) the foods we eat.

Organic foods are usually fresher because they do not contain any preservatives that could extend their shelf life. Organic products are sometimes (but not always, look where they come from) produced on small farms closer to where they are sold.

Organic farming is probably better for the environment. Organic farming methods can reduce pollution, save water, reduce soil erosion, increase soil fertility and consume less energy. Farming without synthetic pesticides is also better for birds and surrounding animals, as well as for people living on farms.

Biologically reared animals do NOT have antibiotics, growth hormones or animal products. Feeding animal by-products increases the risk of mad cow disease (BSE) and the use of antibiotics can make bacterial strains resistant to antibiotics. Organically reared animals are likely to be given enough space to move and walk, which helps maintain good health.

Organic meat and milk may be richer in some nutrients. The results of a European study from 2016 showed that the levels of certain nutrients, including omega-3 fatty acids, were up to 50 percent higher in organic meat and milk than in conventional elevated versions.

Organic food is GMO free. Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) or genetically modified (GE) foods are plants whose DNA has been altered in ways that do not occur in nature or by traditional cross-breeding, usually to become resistant to pesticides or insecticide production. Organic food versus locally grown food

Unlike biological standards, there is no specific definition of "local food". It can grow in your local community, in your state, in your region or in your country. For much of the year, it is often possible to find food grown near home in places such as a farmers market.

Benefits of locally grown food

Financial: Money remains in the local economy. More money goes directly to farmers, instead of things like marketing and distribution.

Transportation: For example, in the United States, the average distance from food to farm is more than 1,500 kilometers. Products must be selected until they are ripe and then gassed to "ripen" upon delivery. Or the food is carefully processed in factories with preservatives, radiation and other means to keep it strong for transport.

Freshness: Local foods are harvested when ripe and therefore fresher and full of flavor. Some small local farmers use organic methods, but cannot become certified organic. Visit the farmers' market and talk to the farmers to find out what methods they use.

Understanding GMOs

The ongoing debate on the effects of GMOs on health and the environment is controversial. In most cases, GMOs are produced to make food crops resistant to herbicides and / or to produce insecticides. For example, most sweet corn consumed in the United States has been genetically engineered to resist Roundup herbicide and produce its own insecticide, Bt Toxin. GMOs are also commonly found in American crops. such as soybeans, alfalfa, squash, zucchini, papaya and canola, and are present in many breakfasts and most of the processed foods we eat. If the ingredients in the package contain corn syrup or soy lecithin, they are likely to contain GMOs.


GMOs and pesticides

The use of toxic herbicides such as Roundup (glyphosate) has increased 15 times since the introduction of GMOs. While the World Health Organization has reported that glyphosate "is likely to cause cancer in humans," there are still disputes about the extent of the health risks posed by pesticide use.

Are GMOs safe? While U.S. Pat. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and biotech companies that insist that GMOs are safe, many food safety advocates point out that no long-term studies have been conducted to confirm the safety of GMO use, while some animal studies have shown that GMO consumption can cause damage to internal organs, slow brain growth and thicken the digestive tract. GMOs are associated with a growing number of food allergens and gastrointestinal problems in humans. While many people think that altering the DNA of a plant or animal can increase the risk of cancer, research to date has proven unreliable. Biologically does not mean pesticides? As mentioned above, one of the main benefits of organic food is low pesticide levels. However, contrary to popular belief, organic farms use pesticides. The difference is that they use only natural pesticides, instead of synthetic pesticides used on conventional commercial farms. Natural pesticides are considered less toxic, however, some have been found to pose a health risk. Your exposure to harmful pesticides is likely to be shorter than your organic diet.

What are the potential risks of a pesticide? Most of us have accumulated pesticide exposure in our bodies over many years of exposure. This chemical, which is "heavy on the body" as it is medically known, can lead to health problems such as headaches, birth defects and other stress on a weakened immune system.

Some studies have shown that even small doses of pesticides can increase the risk of certain cancers, such as leukemia, lymphoma, brain tumors, breast cancer and prostate cancer. Children and fetuses are most vulnerable to pesticide exposure because their immune systems, body and brain are still intact. Exposure at an early age can cause developmental delays, behavioral problems, autism, immune system damage, and motor disorders.

Pregnant women are more vulnerable due to the increased stress pesticides that are on their already stressed organs. In addition, pesticides can be passed from mother to unborn baby, for example through breast milk.

The widespread use of pesticides has also led to "super weeds" and "super beetles" that can only kill highly toxic toxins, such as 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (an important ingredient in Agent Orange). Does it remove washing and peeling pesticides? Fresh washing of the product will reduce but not remove pesticides. Peeling can sometimes help, but valuable nutrients are always under the skin. The best way: eat a variety of foods, wash and scrub all products well, and buy organic if possible.

The best worries about your money when buying organic

Organic foods are often more expensive than conventionally grown foods. However, if you set several priorities, it may be possible to buy organic food and stick to your diet budget.

Find out the level of your pesticide product

Some types of commonly grown crops have a higher pesticide content than others and should be avoided as much as possible. Some are so small that the purchase of inorganic substances is relatively safe.

Fruits and vegetables where the organic label is most important

According to the Environmental Working Group, a non-profit organization that analyzes the results of pesticide testing in the United States, the following fruits and vegetables have the highest levels of pesticides, so it is best to buy organic:



Sweet peppers





Cherry tomatoes

Kale / Collard Greens

Summer squash

Nectarine (imported)


water spinach


Hot peppers

Fruits and vegetables YOU DON'T have to buy organic

The following freshly grown fruits and vegetables, known as "Clean 15", are often exposed to pesticides:






Sweet corn







Sweet peas (frozen)

Those sweet potatoes



Buy organic meat, eggs and milk if you can

In the United States, farmed animals can be fed corn, corn, antibiotics, animal products, growth hormones, pesticides, and manure. These habits can have consequences for the health of the animals themselves and the people who eat their meat, eggs or milk. If you can afford a higher price, look for beef and dairy products labeled "grazing" or "100% grass fed". For pork, chicken or eggs, look for the "certified organic" label. You may find that buying cheaper pieces of organic meat will allow you to eat organically without wasting your food budget. For example, try buying an organic chicken leg instead of the usual elevated chicken breasts.

Other ways to keep organic food costs within your budget

Shop at farmers markets. Many cities, such as small towns, have weekly farmers' markets, where local farmers sell their produce at a street market, which is often discounted at grocery stores. Join the food cooperative. A co-operative in-kind, like a co-operative bakery, usually offers a lower price to members who pay an annual coverage fee.


Attend a community-supported farming (CSA) farm, where individuals and families come together to buy "parts" of mass production directly from a local farm. Local and organic!


Tips for buying organic food

Shop on time. Fruits and vegetables are the cheapest and freshest when they are available in season. Know when you need to ship products to your brand so you can buy the freshest food. Buy. Compare the price of biological items in the supermarket, farmers market, on the Internet and elsewhere (even in the freezer).

Keep in mind that biological products are not always so healthy. Making healthy junk food is a common marketing strategy in the food sector, but organically purchased foods, desserts and snacks are often very high in sugar, salt, fat or calories. It is good to read food labels carefully. Why are organic foods always more expensive? Organic food works harder because farmers do not use synthetic pesticides, chemical fertilizers or medicines. Organic certification is expensive and organic animal feed can cost twice as much. Organic farms are likely to be smaller than conventional farms, which means that specific costs and overheads must be spread over small yields without government subsidies.

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