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How Healthy is Organic Food?

Organic food is a big hit these days among most healthy living enthusiasts for its supposed health benefits. For all those of you who love to buy organic food, here is some food for thought.

Researchers from the Stanford University recently conducted a detailed analysis of the health benefits of organic food and came to the conclusion that there is little to suggest that organic food is healthier than conventionally grown food.

These researchers carefully studied 237 most relevant research papers published on organic food till date.

how-healthy-is-organic-food
The comprehensive meta analysis was conducted under the expert guidance of Crystal Smith Spangler and Dena Bravata, both of whom work at Stanford’s Center for Health Policy. All this because the researchers were as keen as we are to know how healthy is organic food as compared to conventionally grown food.

Health Benefits of organic food

While the researchers made it clear that their aim was not to discourage people from buying organic food but only to enable them to see the truth, quite a few myths about the supposed health benefits of organic foods were shattered as a result of this study.

The researchers, after a series of tests and experiments came to the following conclusions: • Phosphorus, one of the essential nutrients required by us, was significantly higher in foods which were organically grown.
• Consuming organic food was also found to reduce pesticide exposure significantly. The findings of this study were published in the medical journal ‘Annals of Internal Medicine’. This report clearly mentioned that though organic food is 30% less likely to be laced with pesticides as compared to conventional fruits and vegetables, this does not suggest that organic foods were completely free of pesticides.
• A senior author of the study, Dena Bravata, pointed out that organic chicken and pork “may reduce exposure to antibiotic-resistant bacteria, though there is not much difference between organic and conventional foods if you’re an adult and making a decision based solely on your health”.
• There is no difference in the protein or fat content between organic and conventional milk.
• There are no ‘consistent’ differences in the vitamin content of organic foods as well.

Organic Food and Pesticides/ Pesticides in Organic Foods

While organic foods do not hold much of an edge over conventionally grown food when it comes to nutritional value of foods thus grown, the correlation between organic food and pesticides content in foods was found to be too strong to be brushed aside. the low content of pesticides in organic food give it a definite edge!

Dr. Ritika Samaddar, a renowned dietitian from New Delhi (India), also agreed with the findings of the study. She stated without mincing any words that the medical fraternity had never believed organic food to be more nutrient rich than conventionally grown foods.

The higher costs of organic food, according to her, was the main reason of its limited appeal among the masses. As far as cancer causing insecticides and pesticides present in conventionally grown food are concerned, they could be gotten rid of by washing these foods thoroughly before eating them.

While the results of this study are significant Indian experts believe otherwise. This is partly because of the fact that pesticides usage patterns in India and other developing countries are hugely different from those followed in USA and the developed countries. Given the relatively low use of pesticides in these countries, organic food might not hold a significant edge over conventionally grown food in those countries. With  poor regulatory environment in India and similar countries, health benefits of organic food are definitely worth the high price these products command.

The low levels of pesticides in organic food makes it extremely popular among those who can afford it, and those who do not mind shelling out a few extra nickles to avoid foods laden with pesticides.

Conclusion
We hope that you will be able to make a better choice when you pick up your grocery, milk and dairy requirements now that you know about the health benefits of organic food and know how healthy is organic food!!

About Ambika Choudhary Mahajan

Hi, I am Ambika. A hands-on, stay at home mom (by choice) to two cheeky devils.I am a freelance writer and eBook author turned blogger. Connect with me on Facebook, Twitter and Google+ to get regular updates.

20 comments

  1. rajendrasaini@General health tips

    This is partly because of the fact that pesticides usage patterns in India and other developing countries are hugely different from those followed in USA and the developed countries. read more:

    • Ambika Choudhary Mahajan

      Hi, You are right. In India, the usage of pesticides and insecticides is too much, in absence of a regulatory authority.

  2. It’s great that you are trying to educate people with the ready facts. We are an online portal that hopes to spread a sustainable lifestyle among Indians and articles such as these are great encouragement. Boxtree.in – Shop. Save.Sustain

  3. Thanks Ambika for this post..

    Frankly, i don’t about the advantages of Organic food. But, this is one of the best food which i can easily eat without my mother help. Whenever my mothers goes out for the shopping etc. She always tell me to eat these kind of food.. Himanshu recently posted…Giveaway : Grab Professional ManageWP Account For Free Worth $226My Profile

  4. As far as India is concerned, Organic food is definitely superior, even if one eats non-organic fruits and vegetables after thoroughly washing them. One can immediately tell the difference by just the taste difference between the two! not only fruits and vegetables, other food items like milk are not free from chemicals. it is common knowledge that 90% of the dairy farm owners use injections laced with chemicals to increase the milk output. mangoes, bananas and other fruits are ripened using chemicals. the list goes on to water melons and other meoln varieties, vegetables where chemicals are used to boost their growth.

    A simple research into number of cancer and related diseases growth in the country and its causes can reveal the truth. We all have common knowledge of these activities but no organised study like in West.

  5. Hi Ambika

    Healthy food much needed one for all especially the person infront of the system should be taken the foods to keep him fit Shameem recently posted…Tips To Follow To Increase Your Smartphone Battery LifeMy Profile

  6. I’ve heard from a lot of resources that fruits and vegetables were many times more nutritious even 50 or a hundred years ago (5 to 10 times), because there was barely any chemicals depleting the soil. Now with all of the pollution it is effecting the soil’s ability to produce good quality produce. Great article Shawn recently posted…How The Alkaline Kangen Water Ionizer WorksMy Profile

  7. Hi Ambika ! Thanks for making us aware of the importance of Organic food . Eating organic food can help us stay fit and live a healthy and a longer life and keep our body away from deadly diseases . Pramod recently posted…IOS 7 Download for IPhone 5,IPhone 4S and IPadMy Profile

  8. Organic food is widely recommended to be eaten for every body. It even very important if it can be taken daily and if it can be combined with constant workouts, it will be perfect. James osborne recently posted…How To Have Perfect Skin: 5 Top Foods Good For SkinMy Profile

  9. I’ve always known that organic foods were better but I did not understand why exactly. Thank you for breaking it down. Cesky Cess recently posted…Weight Loss MotivationMy Profile

  10. Understand how your hormones function. Each hormone is responsible for the completion of certain tasks in the female body. Knowing what each hormone does will help you determine which hormone is lacking based on which bodily functions are not working properly.

  11. Thanks for the share I strongly agree to your blog …. i think is very cool ..Awesome!!! Love to read your content. joyce loew recently posted…Welcome Bonus 100%My Profile

  12. Great Info.. Thanks to share a amazing info for health. i really impressed your blog.

    thanks

  13. Thanks for making us aware of the importance of Organic food

  14. Thanks to share a amazing info for health

  15. Thanks for post this article.. it really have a good health information.. Let us have a look at some of the top ten foods that are healthiest for your heart.

  16. indeed a good write up. i stop by to mention that there are filters available in markets which can be used to wash our vegetables and fruits before eating or cooking.

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