by Dr. Carl Baird DC, MS
‘Organic food’ is a term that has been around since the 1960’s but it wasn’t until the 1990’s when the TV show “60 Minutes” did an expose on apple growers use of a growth regulating chemical called Alar, a known carcinogen, that the ‘Panic for Organic’ movement began. Today, supermarkets all over the country offer organic alternatives to what seems like every type of food. Potato chips, TV dinners and even soda now have organic brands. As I encourage patients to begin to choose healthier food options the question that always comes up is, “should I buy organic?” The answer to this rather straightforward question turns out to be rather complicated with researchers and scientists on both sides of the fence. I’ve compiled what I’ve read into five points that I hope will help you answer this question for yourself.
Four Conclusions on Organic Food
1) If money is not an issue, choose organic. Studies have shown that switching to an organic diet can significantly lower the level of toxins in our blood and urine. Whether these toxins have contributed to the increased cancer rates in our society has not been determined, but I believe it is safe to say that the less toxins in your body, the better.
2) If money is an issue, still eat more fruits and vegetables. Don’t let the fear of pesticides used in conventional produce scare you away from consuming more fruits and vegetables. Every study done to date on the consumption of food and its relation to cancer has shown that the more fruits and vegetables people eat, the less cancer and heart disease they have. The body has ways to naturally break down natural and artificial toxins and these foods contain the micronutrients needed to help the process.
3) Organic does not necessarily mean healthy. The regulations regarding what can be labeled organic are loose. Organic products do not contain many of the pesticides and antibiotics found in conventional foods but they can contain many of the harmful oils and synthetic additives that don’t promote good health.
4) If you are not a Vegan, limit the amount of conventionally raised animal and dairy products you consume. Those truly concerned about the carcinogens present in our food should keep in mind that conventionally grown meat and dairy products furnish over 90% of our exposure to known contaminants. Chemicals like dioxin and polychlorinated biphenyl’s (PCB’s) have been linked to several types of cancers and are primarily found in fatty meats and dairy products.
Choose ‘grass fed’ or ‘pasture raised’ meat and dairy products over ones labeled organic. While ‘organic’ animal products are not fed chemicals and antibiotics, they are still raised on corn, soybean and wheat which produce the pro-inflammatory omega – 6 fatty acids that lead to chronic inflammation and tissue damage.
Dr. Carl Baird DC, MS is owner and head chiropractor at Evolve Chiropractic & Wellness. His clinic is dedicated to giving his patients the tools they need to take care of themselves. For more information on Dr. Carl and Evolve Chiropractic and Wellness check out his webpage at www.evolve-chiropractic.com or follow Evolve of facebook.