Science Says: Organic Is Better For Your Health -- Category --
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By | August 13th, 2020 | Organic News |

At Only Organic, we talk a lot about the benefits of organic and the environment but there is also significant research that shows some organic foods are healthier than their conventional counterparts. Below are a few studies that show how organic can be healthier not just for the environment but for consumption as well.

Research Finds Organic Milk Packs In Omega-3s:

A 2013 study evaluating organic milk produced in the U.S. finds that organic milk has about 62 percent more omega-3s, compared to milk produced by cows on conventional dairy farms. Cows raised on conventional farms typically spend a lot more time in a barn or confined, and instead of grazing, they’re fed a diet of animal feed that contains a lot of corn.

The Organic Center’s Response:

For the first time, researchers took a long-term, nation-wide look at how farming practices affects milk quality. Specifically, they examined omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratios. Healthy omega 6: omega 3 ratios are low, around 2.3:1, but unhealthy diet trends have increased that ratio to between 10 and 15:1. Read more from the Organic Center here.

Organic Crops Finds Fewer Pesticides and More Antioxidants:

In 2014 a comprehensive review of earlier studies found substantially higher levels of antioxidants and lower levels of pesticides in organic fruits, vegetables and grains compared with conventionally grown produce.

The Organic Center’s Response:

  • Eating organic fruits and vegetables could increase your antioxidant intake by 20-40%.
  • Organic strawberries have more nutrients and antioxidants than their conventional counterparts.
  • Organic tomatoes are 50% higher in vitamin C content than conventional tomatoes.

Read more from the Organic Center here.

Is Organic More Nutritious? New Study Adds To The Evidence:

A 2016 study found that organic dairy and meat contain about 50 percent more omega-3 fatty acids. The increase is the result of animals foraging on grasses rich in omega-3s, which then end up in dairy and meats. The findings are based on data pooled from more than 200 studies, and research in the U.S. has pointed to similar benefits.

The Organic Center’s Response:

The most recent study found that organic milk contained 25% less omega-6 fatty acids and 62% more omega-3 fatty acids than conventional milk. That’s a good thing. You want higher omega-3 and lower omega-6 fatty acids to help maintain cardiovascular health and to support your immune system. Read more from The Organic Center here.

The nutritional differences between conventional and organic crops have always been a much-debated topic, but recent studies have been increasingly showing the benefits of organic. For example, a new meta-analysis out of the United Kingdom (UK) and published in the British Journal of Nutrition(link is external) analyzed over 300 studies and concluded that organic crops have significantly higher antioxidant levels when compared to conventional crops. Learn more from The Organic Center here.

Keep in mind while we highlighted these studies to show how organic food is beneficial to your health, there are also numerous studies on how pesticides are harming your health and the environment.

To learn more about pesticides visit our previous blogs here:

  • Glyphosate Facts Everyone Should Know. For more than 40 years, U.S. farmers have used glyphosate to kill weeds before planting corn feed for livestock. More recently glyphosate is being used by farmers growing Roundup-Ready GMO crops and as a desiccant, to speed the harvest of grain crops like wheat, oats and barley, as well as edible beans and several other crops. Such “harvest aid” uses of glyphosate involve spraying fields about two weeks prior to harvest. Learn more about glyphosate here and here.
  • An Important New Reason To Keep Pesticides Away from Children. Children exposed to insecticides inside their homes have a 47 percent higher risk of developing certain cancers in childhood, according to the report by Alex Lu and his colleagues at the Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health. Read more on this blog here.
  • All Pesticides Aren’t Created Equal. There are lots of reasons for choosing to eat organic, but one of the most compelling is that organic farmers don’t use toxic persistent pesticides and that’s better for all of us. That doesn’t mean they don’t use other strategies to keep pests from destroying their crops, they just go about it in a safer way. Read more of this blog here.
  • Why You Should Avoid Pesticides And Herbicides. Often times we are asked what the current pesticide data and studies show relating to pesticides and herbicides. In light of this reoccurring question, we decided to pull together some research to review the latest news and data on pesticides and herbicides. Review these studies here.
  • The Two Worlds of Pesticides: Synthetic and Natural. One type of synthetic pesticide is systemic pesticides, which are either applied to the seeds, soil, or leaves of a plant and are then absorbed. This allows for the chemical to distribute throughout the plant and kill insects that feed on it but makes it impossible to wash off. The Pesticide Action Network reviewed tests conducted by the USDA from 1999 to 2007 on systemic pesticides and found that 74 percent of conventionally grown lettuce and 70 percent of conventional broccoli contained their chemical residues. Continue reading this blog here.
  • Stop Using Pesticides That Harm Pollinators. Many pesticides, even those used at home and sold by nurseries, are acutely toxic to bees and pollinators and result in death and contribute to Colony Collapse Disorder, or CCD. Learn more about how to keep pollinators healthy in your yard.

To help you find organic produce we recommend shopping directly from your local farmer by joining a community-supported agriculture organization (CSA), or visiting a farmers market. Learn more in our blog How To Eat Organic During The Harvest Season here.

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