Have you made the switch to buying organic yet? If not, maybe you are unsure whether organic food benefits are really worth the higher price. Or maybe you’re not sure if there actually is a difference between organic and non-organic foods.
If you’re like many people, you may be unclear on what exactly you’re getting when you spend that extra money on a carton of organic milk.
Rest assured though that there is a difference!
Read on to learn more about organic food benefits and how organically grown food differs from non-organic food.
What Does Organic Mean?
First, let’s briefly cover what organic food means. The word “organic” is used to refer to the way in which food is grown/processed. Organic foods are those that are grown without using synthetic pesticides, chemical fertilizers, or genetically modified organisms (GMOs).
There’s also a difference with organic livestock raised for dairy, eggs, and meat too. They must be given organic food and have access to the outdoors. They also cannot receive antibiotics or growth hormones, and they cannot be fed animal by-products.
So what does that mean for you?
Organic Food Benefits You May Not Know
1. More Omega-3s
A recent study in the US found that organic dairy and meat contains 50% more omega-3 fatty acids than their non-organic versions! This is because organic livestock eats more omega-3 rich foods, which then ends up in the dairy and meat.
Omega-3s are linked to many health benefits, such as better cardiovascular health, immune function, and neurological function/development.
2. Increased Antioxidants
Research has also found that organic fruits and vegetables, such as apples, blueberries, and carrots, have much higher levels of antioxidants and other important compounds, such as flavonols.
These beneficial antioxidants and compounds protect cells against damage, which can help with things such as heart health, vision, and anti-aging.
3. Lower Levels of Pesticides
Traditionally, crops have been grown using synthetic pesticides. These do a good job of killing bugs that could harm crops, but unfortunately, they also remain in and on the food, which can have detrimental effects on humans.
For example, organophosphorus is found in traditionally grown crops, and it has been linked to problems such as autism and ADHD. Organically grown crops do not use these pesticides and thus do not contain these potentially dangerous chemicals.
4. Better Taste
Organic foods simply taste better than their non-organic counterparts! This is often because things like organic crops are fresher and generally sold closer to where they are picked.
The fresher, better taste may also be a result of the higher levels of antioxidants and the lower crop yield, which allows the food to absorb higher levels of nutrients from the soil.
5. Better for the Environment
Organically grown food is better for the environment in numerous ways. Organic farming practices are more sustainable, use less energy, reduce pollution, prevent soil erosion, and conserve water.
Organic food also helps preserve wildlife! Local wildlife (and nearby humans) are not exposed to harmful herbicides and pesticides, and many farmers help preserve natural habitats by planting flowers and plants specifically for animals and insects (such as bees) in danger of extinction.
6. Reduced Antibiotic Resistance
Antibiotic resistance is an increasing concern worldwide. Due to exposure and overuse, many people are becoming resistant to important antibiotics, leaving them at risk for infection.
Because organic livestock does not receive antibiotics, organic dairy and meat reduce our exposure to antibiotics, which in turn reduces our chances of developing antibiotic resistance.
Organic Foods Are Just One Way to Keep Healthy
Now you know just what organic foods can do for you. But did you know that many health and beauty products are now available in organic versions? You can even get organic toothpaste! This is great news for your health and that of your family.
If you’re interested in more about organic foods and natural health, be sure to check out our other articles.