Have you recently been noticing more of organic food lining the shelves of your local grocery store?
Have your friends been talking about organic food health benefits?
Have you noticed the seeming explosion in the trend of buying more organic food?
If you’ve been wondering if this is a new food fad that Americans have picked up, think again!
According to research conducted by Statista, 44% of Americans reported that they made a conscious effort to include organic food in their meals. To cater to the growing demand, the availability of healthy food is growing quickly. In the year 2017, 54.83 million people bought organic food with the sales generating around 47 billion dollars.
Now that is most definitely NOT a food fad!
Are You Wondering What Exactly is Organic Food? And, Why is it a Better Choice?
Organic food is produce grown without the use of chemical pesticides and fertilizers, or genetically modified seeds. Only natural manure is used to grow the crops. As for animals reared organically, they are fed only grass and other foods that nature has intended for them. In addition, they are not given hormones, antibiotics, or any other chemicals in an attempt to increase the amount of milk, meat, or eggs they produce. Organic fish is either caught in the wild or farmed using chemical-free feed.
As for the processing methods used in organic foods, manufacturers make sure not to use any preservatives, artificial flavoring or taste enhancers, or any other additives like chemical food coloring or any other. You are also likely to find the complete list of ingredients listed on the packaging so you can make sure of the purity of the food you’re buying. In addition, if you regularly order ready meals, you’ll find the organic meal delivery option on the website with only the freshest of ingredients that provide nutrition and good health.
Let’s Talk About Organic Food Health Benefits
Should you read this feature on HealthLine, you’ll find a whole list of reasons to opt for organic foods.
1. Organic Foods Contain More Antioxidants
Fruits and vegetables contain powerful antioxidants that can protect your body cells from the adverse effects of free radicals. As a result, when you eat portions of these foods regularly, they prevent oxidative stress on the body and build your immune system. These effects are also effective in preventing a host of other diseases.
However, when plants, fruits, and vegetables are grown organically, they can contain up to 69% more of the antioxidants and more vitamins and minerals. In the absence of chemical pesticides and sprays, plants produce more antioxidants to protect themselves from insects and other harmful elements. By adding more natural plant products to your diet, you can actually get organic food health benefits equivalent to eating 2 extra servings of fruits, vegetables, cereals, and other items.
2. Organic Meat and Dairy Products are More Nutritious
By consuming more free-range and pasture-fed meat, eggs, and dairy products, you can get added organic food health benefits like omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, and other positives. That’s because animals eating a pure diet like grass and chemical-free feed are likely to pass the goodness into the products that they provide.
Professor Carlo Leifert is one of the researchers on the Newcastle University team that studied papers and data collected from sources across the world. Leifert reports to TreeHugger saying, ““Several of these differences stem from organic livestock production and are brought about by differences in production intensity, with outdoor-reared, grass-fed animals producing milk and meat that is consistently higher in desirable fatty acids such as the omega-3s, and lower in fatty acids that can promote heart disease and other chronic diseases.”
3. Organic Foods have a Lower Content of Pesticides and Heavy Metals
The synthetic pesticides and fertilizers that conventional farmers use to grow their crops eventually find their way into the products you buy. And, when you consume these foods over an extended time, they could cause several health issues. For instance, this report released on the TIME reveals that the herbicide Roundup can possibly cause cancer while the chlorpyrifos insecticide can interfere with the development of babies.
Further, studies conducted on the remnants of pesticides in food show that they can cause ADHD in kids and affect fertility levels in men. Using chemical fertilizers can also raise levels of cadmium in the food that buildsup in the kidneys and liver. Avoiding conventional products can give you the organic food health benefits of preventing toxins and heavy metals from entering your body.
4. Organic Farm Produce has Lower Levels of Nitrates
When plants are grown organically, they are likely to contain up to 30% fewer nitrates as compared to their conventional counterparts. High levels of nitrate in your food could cause various kinds of cancer. In addition, nitrates can possibly cause a condition called methemoglobinemia in infants making it difficult for their bodies to assimilate oxygen. By eating more organic fruits and vegetables, lactating mothers can prevent the incidence of this condition.
5. Organic Meat is Likely to be More Healthy
Research has shown that when livestock and food animals are kept in closed confined environments, and transported over long distances to the slaughterhouses, they undergo high amounts of stress. This stress results in their susceptibility to infections. The meat harvested from such animals has less of glycogen in the muscle tissue making it low-quality and easily perishable. Processing companies need to use more preservatives and chemicals to make the meat taste good and fit for consumption. A better option is to choose products from free-range animals that have not been exposed to stressful conditions.
Organic food is certainly a superior option to conventional processed foods. You may find that these foods are somewhat more expensive than the typical brands you have been buying earlier. But, given the long-term organic food health benefits for your family, it is preferable to make that investment.
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