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Organic Versus Conventional Foods

By Debra Rodzinak

There are several reasons to choose organic over other foods. Some of these concerns include:

  • Pesticides – Conventional growing practices call for the use of synthetic pesticides to control mold, disease, and insects. This residue is left on produce.
  • Additives – Food additives and substances added during the processing of food along with fortifying agents (preservatives, artificial sweeteners, flavors, and colors) create an eye pleasing presentation, but add unwanted factors to foods.
  • Environment – Some believe that the environment is hurt with conventional growing practices by increased pollution, water consumption, and decreased soil quality.

Is Organic Food More Nutritious?

No. But this is not why you should buy organic. Nutritional value can be found in a variety of foods that are farmed with conventional methods. The problem is that these foods also contain pesticides and additives that many do not want to put in their bodies. I feel better just knowing that I am not adding additional chemicals to my body.

What Are the Downsides to Buying Organic?

The main complaint heard is the cost. Because of the farming practices used to grow organic foods, farmers have to charge more for organic foods. 

Another complaint is spoilage. Because organic foods are not covered with wax or preservatives, they spoil naturally.  This means that as you convert to buying more and more organic foods, some of this food will probably spoil. 

I have discovered that if I buy my food more often, I don’t spend as much money and I tend to eat the food I buy before it goes bad. This doesn’t mean that the last few pieces of a loaf of organic bread I bought last week didn’t go bad, they did. But, overall I have found that buying organic is not that hard and I feel better knowing that chemicals and pesticides are not polluting my body.

Some complain that the shape, color, and size of organic food is less than perfect. Should this really matter? I am now suspect of apples that seem too “perfect” in the store.  In the real world, an apple is rarely perfect. Just remember that organic foods still have to meet quality and safety standards set by the government.

Baby steps is the key to beginning any change and this is no different. The next time you shop, just try buying one organic item. If you feel that you can make the change, add more and more organic items to your list.  Your body will thank you.

 

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