Coach Charles Poliquin gives us an introduction to incorporating more organic foods into our nutrition plan....
Organic food is always superior to conventional food. Scientific studies show that organic fruits and vegetables generally contain less toxic pesticide and herbicides than conventional produce, and organic meat and animal products allow you to avoid the effects of eating foods that have been treated with antibiotics and growth hormones. Whether organic foods actually contain higher nutrient content is unknown except from anecdotal experience, but there is evidence that organically-grown foods contain more antioxidants and micronutrients such as folic acid and vitamin C, making organic foods the ideal choice.
The topic of organic foods provides much room for argument and encompasses a variety of issues. First, there’s the issue of definitions, which I’ll cover briefly, but if you want more information on definitions you can refer to the Oregon Tilth website.
Second, there’s the question of if organic food is actually “healthier.” I will discuss strategies for avoiding toxic pesticides and the fact that organic animal products have been shown to be richer in healthy fats and have a more favorable omega-3 to omega-6 ratio.
Third, there’s the question of whether products that are being sold as organic really are organic. In light of news and popular culture reports of mismanagement by organic certifying agents, producers, and the U.S. National Organic Program that oversees organics in the U.S., the integrity of the organic label has been called into question.