Until the 20s, all crops in the world were organic. It was only after farmers utilized synthetic pesticides and chemicals after the World War II did organic farming faded into the niche market that it is today. Modern-day farming entails using a cocktail of chemicals to maintain crops and keep farm animals healthy. Unfortunately, these chemicals are poisoning the water, the air, and the soil. The pesticides, insecticides, steroids, hormones, antibiotics and herbicides used to kill “unwanted” microbes are also ending up on the food we eat. Eventually, these chemicals lead to sickness particularly cancer. This is the reason why organic foods started being popular again.
What Constitute as “Organic”?
Organic crops must adhere to specific standards set by the United States Department of Agriculture or USDA to earn the label “organic.” The rules require all crops to be grown without using synthetic pesticides, artificial fertilizers, irradiation, and biotechnology.
On the other hand, animal products are deemed organic if the animals are grown without using antibiotics or synthetic growth hormones. The animals must not be confined in cramped spaces and are allowed to roam outside.
The Best Organic Foods to Eat
Some health experts believe that organically-raised crops and animals yield superior products as opposed to chemical-laden crops and meat products. Some foods don’t have to be bought organic but for others, you’ll have to keep an eye for the “organic” label. Below are produce that contain the highest level of pesticides:
- Cherry tomatoes
- Imported snap peas and nectarines
- Sweet and hot peppers
Because these produce contains high levels of chemicals, you should buy organically-produced counterparts. On the other hand, fruits and vegetables with very low pesticides and chemicals include:
- Sweet peas
- Winter squash
The great thing about fruits and veggies with low pesticide content is that they can be peeled. Because the chemicals do not make their way deeper into the produce, you can simply peel the fruits and vegetables off to get the good part. The good part is not tainted with chemicals at all.
Health Benefits of Organic Foods
Low Chemical Content
Because the crops are not treated with cocktails of chemicals, organic produce and meats are not tainted with chemicals. Studies show that crop chemicals can cause a wide range of health problems including metabolic issues, hormonal problems, and cancer.
Organically-produce and meats are not made of genetically-modified organisms or GMOs. GMOs are mutated versions of food. The technology is meant to boost crop production and prevent famine. Unfortunately, the technology itself is not widely understood and so are its health risks. Anything that does not exist naturally in nature should not be considered safe to eat.
Apart from yielding more nutrients, organically produced fruits, vegetables and meats are better in quality because of the lack of chemicals. Farm animals that are fed with various hormones and antibiotics are more stressed out compared to free-range, organically raised animals. The difference can affect the meat quality significantly. The same thing goes for organically produced fruits and vegetables.
Let’s not forget, organically produced fruits, vegetables, and meat products are more environmentally-friendly because no chemicals were used to raise these food items. Pesticides, herbicides, insecticides, and hormones can pollute the rivers, the soil, and the air, causing agriculture and environmental damages.