Many people recommend that, to the degree possible, your foods be organic. The benefits of moving to organic foods are many. Organic foods can decrease your exposure to synthetic pesticides and genetically modified organisms, and many agree that they have a better taste.
What is Organic Food?
Organic food is produced by agricultural practices which promote agro-ecosystem health (bio-diversity, biological cycles, and soil biological activity). These practices include crop rotation, cover and green manure crops, use of beneficial insects, composted plant wastes, and natural soil amendments.
The most important part in understanding the benefits of these foods is learning what they do not have:
- No genetically engineered seeds or crops, sewage sludge, raw manures, synthetic herbicides, pesticides, fungicides or fertilizers.
- No antibiotics, growth hormones or genetically engineered products.
- No food irradiation or synthetic preservatives.
Reasons to Eat Organic Food
- Keep Synthetic Chemicals Off Your Plate
Many synthetic pesticides approved for use by the EPA were registered before extensive research linking these chemicals to cancer and other diseases had been established. Now the EPA considers that 60 percent of all herbicides, 90 percent of all fungicides and 30 percent of all pesticides are carcinogenic. The bottom line is that synthetic pesticides are poisons designed to kill living organisms.
- Protect Our Children
A child’s exposure level to the widely used synthetic pesticides present in conventionally prepared food is about four times that of an adult. The food choices you make now will impact your child’s health in the future.
- Organic Food Tastes Better
There’s a good reason many professional chefs use organic foods in their recipes. They taste better. It’s common sense – well-balanced soils grow strong healthy plants that taste great!
- Protect Water Quality
Despite water’s importance, the Environmental Protection Agency estimates agricultural pesticides contaminate the groundwater in 38 states, polluting the primary source of drinking water for more than half the country’s population.
- Protect Farm Worker’s Health
A recent study found that farmers exposed to herbicides had a six-time greater risk of contracting cancer than non-farmers. In California, field workers suffer the highest rates of occupational illness in the state. Farmworker health also is a serious problem in developing nations, where pesticide use can be poorly regulated.
- Save Energy
American farms have changed drastically in the last three generations, from the family-based small businesses dependent on human energy to large-scale factory farms highly dependent on fossil fuels. More energy is now used to produce synthetic fertilizers than to till, cultivate, and harvest all the crops in the United States. Organic farming techniques reduce the need for such energy-consuming processes. Weeding is largely done by hand and natural fertilizers are used in place of synthetic products. Organic produce also tends to travel a shorter distance from the farm to your plate.
- Help Small Farmers
Although more and more large-scale farms are making the conversion to organic practices, most organic farms are independently owned and operated family farms of less than 100 acres. It’s estimated that the United States has lost more than 650,000 family farms in the past decade. Now, more than half of this country’s farm production comes from 1 percent of our farms. Organic farming could become one of the few hopes left for family farms.
- Support a True Economy
Although organic foods might seem more expensive than conventional foods, conventional food prices do not reflect hidden costs borne by taxpayers, including billions in federal subsidies. Other hidden costs include pesticide regulation and testing, hazardous waste disposal and clean-up, and ongoing environmental damage.
- Promote Biodiversity
The loss of a large variety of species (biodiversity) is an important environmental concern. The good news is that organic growers have been collecting and preserving seeds, and growing extraordinary varieties for decades. Mono cropping is also a serious concern. Mono cropping is the practice of planting large plots of land with the same crop year after year. While this approach tripled farm production between 1950 and 1970, the lack of natural diversity of plant life has left the soil lacking in natural minerals and nutrients. To replace the nutrients, chemical fertilizers are used in ever-increasing amounts.
It should be noted that Liddell™ uses only organic alcohol as the preservative for its products. To the degree possible, our active ingredients are also purchased from organic sources. And, when you make the move to organic foods, keep our product Chemicals in mind to help detox as you begin your fresh start on healthy eating.
Jana Taylor is a staff writer for Liddell Laboratories.