You’ve probably already heard that one of the great things about eating organic food is that it doesn’t have any of those harmful toxic pesticide residues usually found on fruit and vegetable skins. But did you know that choosing organic also have broader benefits like feeding the world? According to a research done by the United Nations in 2008, African farmers who shifted from chemical to organic systems enjoyed twice as much yield in their crops. In 2011, the nonprofit organic research organization Rodale Institute completed a 30 year long side by side trial of organic versus chemical crops and concluded that although both types of farming generated the same amount of food in normal years, it was the organic crop that came in number one during years of drought.
Eating organic at your home also makes perfect sense. If you still don’t see the benefits of going organic or if a loved one doesn’t see the point of going organic then read on for some insights.
4) You’re eating corn chemicals.
According to USDA data, U.S. farmers are using a lot of glyphosate, the major ingredient of herbicides like Roundup, that researchers are detecting it in the air, rain and streams. In fact in 2009 alone, 57 million pounds of glyphosate were sprayed on food crops, mainly on genetically engineered corn and soy crops. What’s more alarming, glyphosate is a systemic chemical, which means that it works its way inside the crops and ends up inside food at disturbingly high levels. Glyphosate has also been linked to infertility, obesity, birth defect, learning disabilities and potentially irreversible metabolic damage.
What you can do about it: To keep this hormone-disrupting chemical out of your body and the environment, take it upon yourself to make as many of your food purchases organic. If you happen to be located in a place where you have a problem with glyphosate in your drinking water, you can use granular activated carbon filters to remove the glyphosate from water as per advise by the Environmental Protection Agency.
3) It’s raining shampoo chemicals.
According to a study published in 2010 in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives, it was found that hormone-disrupting phthalates, the fragrance chemicals commonly used in shampoos and soaps, are winding up inside the food we eat. After some investigation, the source has been found to be human sewage sludge which is usually used as a fertilizer in farm fields. The study concluded that shampoo chemicals that wash down the drain and end up at the water-treatment plants tend to taint the the sludge. Luckily, organic farming condemns the use of human sewage as fertilizer.
What you can do about it: If you purchase your vegetables and fruits from your local farmers who aren’t certified organic, go ahead and ask them how they fertilize their soil. If ever you have a backyard garden and you buy your compost from the store, be sure to avoid composts that uses “biosolids “ as an ingredient. Also stay away from bagged blends that are caked together and feel heavy or give off sewer smell or ammonia.
2) Pesticides cause obesity.
According to research, there is a troubling health trend that has been observed among farmers and pesticide applicators who use synthetic chemicals in their farming methods: an increased risk of becoming fat and obese. Even pesticides in very low doses pose a threat to the general population. Scientists are starting to discover that the chemicals usually used to grow non organic food (scientists actually call them obesogens) are hormone disruptors that interfere with our body’s natural weight-loss chemistry. There are also certain pest-killing organophosphate pesticides which are disturbingly linked not only to obesity but to cancer and type 2 diabetes as well.
What you can do about it: To avoid diabetes and cancer-inducing pesticides, switch to an organic diet. However, phthalates, one of the ingredients used to make pesticide formulations, can still show up in common household items so be sure to avoid using synthetic fragrances, gel-coated medications and soft vinyl products from now on.
1) Factory-farmed meats accelerate aging.
When you raise thousands of animals in small, cramped spaces, things can turn really filthy. So to prevent E. coli and other bacteria from getting into the food supply, farmers not only inject low levels of antibiotics (which breeds antibiotic resistance to humans, by the way) they also resort to other questionable methods. For example: After being slaughtered, factory-farmed chickens are usually submerged in chlorine baths which contain 30 times more chlorine than your average swimming pool. To mask the chlorine odor, these chickens are then injected with a solution of water and phosphate, a chemical that causes weak bones, chronic kidney disease and premature aging.
What you can do about it: Switch to organic meat or locally produced meat. Small-scale poultry farmers don’t usually bother with chlorine baths, and even though large-scale organic operations use chlorine baths, they make it a point that they don’t contain no more chlorine than is allowed in drinking water.