Why is organic food better for your health?
Simarouba Yoga and Naturopathy Clinic
Thippasandra, Bengaluru Feb 9, 2017
There has been a rising popularity of organic foods. And for a good reason. These foods are the most natural in every sense, and consuming it comes with a load of advantages. So read on to find out more about organic foods and why you should opt it over other alternatives.
What are Organic Foods?
When someone calls foods organic, they refer to the way these foods have been grown and processed. What constitutes as organic food differs from country to country, but generally, it includes agricultural products that have been grown without the help of synthetic herbicides, pesticides, fertilisers or without the involvement of any bioengineered genes, i.e. genetically modified organisms (GMO).
In terms of dairy and poultry, the livestock must be raised organically in conditions that accommodate the animals’ natural behaviour as well as be fed organic feed and forage. Organic livestock is not pumped with antibiotics, growth hormones, or any animal byproducts or any other synthetic products. To sum it, these foods are grown in the most natural conditions without any help of artificially or synthetic chemicals or hormones.
What makes Organic Food Different from Non-Organic Food?
As mentioned before, organic foods are grown using the help of natural fertilisers such as manure or composts, while conventional crops take the assistance of synthetic or chemical fertilisers. These crops also use chemical herbicides to get rid of weeds and other unwanted growths, as opposed to organic food where they farmers control weed -growth in natural ways by employing methods such as mulching, weeding, crop rotation or tilling.
Similarly, disturbance from other organisms is controlled naturally using traps and other methods, rather than depending on synthetic pesticides.
When it comes to organic meat, dairy or eggs, the livestock is fed organic food that is hormone-free as well as GMO-free, unlike the conventional approach to dairy and poultry farming, which involves the use of hormones for faster growth and more meat.
To prevent diseases, organic farmers employ a healthier diet, clean premises and rotational grazing. Non-organic livestock is loaded with antibiotics and other medication that prevent the animals from acquiring any livestock diseases. In fact, in some cases, these animals are not even given access to outdoors and are locked in facilities with inhumane conditions.
Advantages of Organic Foods
Sure, the organic foods are a little more expensive when compared to the conventionally grown food produce. But that is because growing and developing these products in healthier conditions require a lot of care and attention, and the farmers will need to invest more. Below are some reasons why you must head to the organic produce section during your next supermarket visit.
Most of the conventionally-grown vegetables, fruits and other groceries have a lot of poisonous chemicals and pesticides on their surface. This is because the farmers spray them with a lot of synthetic substances to harvest a heavier yield. In addition to that, these synthetic products are not properly tested for the long term effects they may have on the human body.
Because these foods are grown in a completely natural environment, organic foods are rich in vitamins, minerals and enzymes. This is because when the soil is subjected to pesticides and synthetic fertilisers, the soil loses its minerals and other natural organisms, thus depriving your crops of any nourishment. In addition to that, these synthetic fertilizers have been produced, making use of toxic chemicals, which in the long run, cannot be good for our body. With organic food, that is not the case with organic cultivation, allowing the crops more nourishment.
Because of how nourished these plants are, the organic produce also ends up tasting better. Sure they may not appear that way, but organic farmers prioritise taste over appearance.
The idea here is that if the crops or livestock aren’t raised in stressful environments, the flavour of the product is much better.
No use of Genetically Modified Organisms(GMO)
Another big no-no for organic farmers is the use of GMOs. Genetically modified foods are engineered in a way that they need the assistance of a harmful chemical to give out a proper yield. These chemicals are produced by large corporations that care very little about human health and natural farming. Organic foods have never been subjected to any such engineered modifications.
Healthy meat and dairy
As mentioned before, commercial livestock is raised in terrible conditions and are pumped with growth hormones, antibiotics and other chemicals whose long-term effects on the human body have not been properly researched.
Choosing organic foods is a sure-fire way to prevent conventional growers from polluting the soil and water with chemicals and other fertilisers. When the soil is polluted, the pollution also seeps into underwater reserves which is something us humans depend on.
Organic farming ensures that the toxins are kept out of the air, drinking water and soil. Even the farmers who grow these crops are in safe conditions without being subjected to harmful pesticides.
We need to realise that we aren’t the only organisms on the planet. For life on earth to be well maintained, it is important to coexist with other organisms and maintain proper biodiversity. The herbicides and pesticides don't differentiate between good and bad organisms. Thus we are contributing to the killing of important organisms.
Organic farming doesn’t involve getting rid other species using synthetic fertilizers; Besides, in subjecting organisms to toxic chemicals, they will just come back with some natural modifications, that will allow them to survive harsh chemicals. There is no way that using chemical products will completely eradicate bug infestations, which means with time we will have to turn to stronger chemicals, inadvertently increasing the toxic products that we consume.
No Monocropping Involved
Monocropping refers to growing a single type of crop over a large area. It is basically a way of manufacturing just one product on a large scale. In growing your products like these, the crops end up being more vulnerable to diseases and bugs, thus wiping out the crop altogether.
Organic farming involves growing multiple crops over a large area, thus inviting different organisms that live in harmony and encourage healthier plants and healthier earth.
In choosing organic foods, you are promoting a healthier environment, better health for you and your family and better treatment of plants and animals. It isn’t that hard of a choice to make. It’s time for all of us to go organic!
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