Dispelling the Myths About Organic Food
As we all hustle and bustle through life, we watch as the world around us slowly deteriorates. Glaciers are melting, species are struggling to survive, and people around the world cannot even afford to feed themselves or their families. Consequently, helplessly witnessing this global devastation has prompted people worldwide to join in the fight to go green. Not only can this movement save our planet, it will inevitably save ourselves. The coupled concerns for the well being of the world and the well being of our health have sparked the demand for and scrutiny over the true effectiveness of organic food. Two of the most common myths swirling around this growing food source are typically whether or not its better or more nutritional than non-organic food, and whether or not switching to wholly organic means of food production can really have an influence on the global environment.
To begin dispelling these myths, we must first delve into the most common knowledge about what organic food actually is. This type of food source is defined by its production process, in that when produced, less synthetic materials (i.e., additives or processed chemical preservatives) are used. Most know that in the growing and harvesting processes of organic produce, chemicals or pesticides are also not used.
A lot of the myths surrounding the pros and cons of organic food revolve around its actual health benefits. Initially, skeptics charged that there was little to no difference in the nutritional value between consumption of organic food and the usual, conventionally processed foods. But with the collection of additional information over the years, reports released currently indicate quite the opposite; in fact, because organic foods are produced using processes that entail the limited use of artificial and chemical components, the amount of nutrients found in organic food is proportionally higher than what is found in the nutritious components of non-organic foods.
The fertilizers used in the conventional production of non-organic produce swell the fruits and veggies with water, diluting the concentration of nutrients found in the produce. Because organic produce is not fertilized with the artificial fertilizers used in the production of non-organic foods, they are filled with a much higher proportion of nutrient value, containing higher levels of trace minerals, Vitamin C, and antioxidants.
Most people naively assume that the chemicals and pesticides used to keep non-organic foods clear of insects are harmless. However, those chemicals build up in our body eventually prove more harmless than harmful. And the chemicals take their toll on the produce as well. Because organic plants depend upon their own immune systems to protect themselves from diseases from insects, they have built up and higher levels of phytonutrients and antioxidants. Nonetheless, since non-organic produce doesn’t have that opportunity because of the heavy handed use of pesticides, their immune systems are weakened and can’t produce as much phytonutrients to protect themselves. Upon consumption, organic produce provides our bodies with more antioxidants than the non-organic produce, which then helps builds up the level of antioxidants in our bodies and helps us ward off free radicals.
Dana Livingston is a writer for a culinary school website where you can browse schools and the latest trends in the culinary arena.