To buy organic or not to buy organic; it seems to be thee hot topic! It seems that celebrities, athletes, and clothing designers are all choosing organic. Farmer’s markets are suddenly popular again to purchase freshly off the crop produce.
For some people this trend can be overwhelming and for other health enthusiasts, it may be second nature to base their nutrition on organic produce and meats. What is a fitness athlete to do and what is the best choice for the best results? And is it worth the extra cost?
So, what exactly does organic mean? In a nutshell, organic refers to food that contains no preservatives, no added chemicals, fertilizers, coloring or additives and is not genetically modified. With regards to meat, the animals are reared without any antibiotics or growth hormones. Something you may think twice about when your diet is composed mainly of produce and chicken breasts!
The benefits of an organic diet are numerous. Here are a few reasons to switch over to organic:
1. Organic food contains lower levels of pesticides – up to 70% of pesticides, which appear in conventional food, are banned in the production of organic food.
2. Organic food does not have any synthetic additives – they do not have artificial food colors and flavors, preservatives, nitrates and sulphites, artificial sweeteners or monosodium glutamate (MSG). Food is preserved and sweetened naturally using substances such a honey and grape juice.
3. Organic food has significantly higher levels of nutrients – depending on the choice of produce, organic food is shown to have higher amounts of salicylic acid and more vitamin C, iron, calcium, magnesium and phosphorous.
4. Organic livestock production does not use antibiotics or growth hormones – in a lot of cases, antibiotics or growth hormones are injected into cattle to make them larger, fatter and hence deliver more meat. In organically reared cattle, they are allowed to grow and develop at their own pace, and without any synthetics injected into their system.
5. Organic food is free of Genetically Engineered (GE) ingredients – organic farmers do not use GE seeds or irradiation methods. Instead, crop rotation and use of natural compost produces a richer soil in which to grown and harvest their produce.
To answer if you should buy organic or not? Yes!!! If price is an issue, then it’s best to start with selecting those items that you use on a daily basis and that are highly recommended to buy organic. Here are the top 12 foods you should buy organic!
- Bell Peppers