Day 12: Organic Food

Reducing the amount of waste going to the landfill is one thing. But being careful of what we eat is something entirely different, yet equally important in living a greener life.

I'm not just talking about pesticides and other toxins in our food. The conventional way of producing food is not sustainable because it depletes the soils nutrients to the point where it is no longer cultivatable.

Organic food is a defined as being produced using methods that do not involved synthetic pesticides or chemical fertilizers, and that rely on natural and sustainable cultivation.

Here are a few reasons why organic food is better:

1. In order to have the organic certification, food needs to meet very strict criterias, ensuring that we get the highest quality food. What's more, food of any type needs to be 95% certified organic to have the organic logo.

This means crops are grown on soil that has been free of synthetic pesticides for 3 years, animals and crops have no synthetic chemicals input (fertilizers, antibiotics, pesticides, food additives), no genetically modified organisms and no irradiation.

2. There is a lot more nutrients in organic food compared to non-organic. This makes sense in the end, better soil translates into the food we eat.

Here's an example with lettuce. Organic lettuce has 12mg of sodium and commercial lettuce has 0mg; organic has 176.5mg of potassium, commercial only 53mg; organic has 169mcg of manganese (an important nutrient), while commercial has only 1mcg. I was so shocked at when I read this! You think eating fruits and veggies is good enough, but no, it's not!

Also, organic food apparently tastes better. With all those nutrients, it's not surprising.

3. Growing organically is just plain better for the environment. It will ensure that we still have soil to grow on in 100 years, because at the rate we are growing, we are using up the soil to the point where nothing can grow in it, and this will take decades to fix.

Organic farmers rotate their fields and give them time to replenish their nutrients. This also helps with water retention, so they don't need to use excessive amounts of water to grow the crops, thus saving an other of our precious resources.

It's also favourable for wildlife in that it doesn't destroy their ecosystem.

(Picture credit)

4. Eating organic foods is better for your health. Not only are you not putting all those horrible pesticides and other toxins in your system, but eating organic also helps you fight cancer, stroke and heart problems.

We know now that many of the toxins used for growing crops are cancerogenous, yet they are still being used. Even if you wash the food before eating, it's not enough because it's inside the food, absorbed through the plant itself.

5. Healthier livestock means a healthier you!! Organically farmed animals are healthier and don't need to be pumped with antibiotics or grown in inhumane conditions.

And here's one more thing. Meat itself takes up so much resources to produce. It takes 16lbs of grain to produce 1lb of meat! And we're not meant to eat that much meat anyway.

So here's an idea, make at least one meat-less dish per week. And reduce the amount of meat per dish while augmenting the amount of good (organic) vegetables.

To be honest, I hadn't quite realized how bad conventionnal farming methods were until now. And the information about the nutrient deficiency of these foods is showing me that I do need to be more careful in what I buy and eat.

Just about every type of food is now being grown organically, and there are more and more choices. They can now also be found in your local supermarket, as opposed to special natural food stores a few years ago.

What's even better is getting your produce locally at farmer's market. This encourages local growers and is even greener because the produce hasn't been transported from so far.

Eating more organics is definitely on my list of things I need to improve on for living a greener more sustainable lifestyle! So I really don't have much more tips for you guys, but maybe you do? Share them in the comments!

I party at these parties.

1 comment:

  1. I've been trying to eat organic more often as well; especially meat. We don't have access to a lot of organic produce unfortunately but I try to buy it when I can. After researching what goes into making and growing our food it's kind of disturbing


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