Eating organic: an ethical act and sustainable choice

La Mère Poule February, 2013

Is eating organic food the new fad? In reality, opting for foods or products from organic farming isn’t just a matter of trend; it is a lifestyle choice that can have real impact on the health of our planet. To help you see more clearly here are the answers to your questions on organic food.

 

Is eating organic better for your health?

Not necessarily. In fact, it is true that many manufacturers of processed organic foods such as cereals, granola bars, and bread bear a particular attention to the nutritional quality of the products they develop; but is organic ketchup really better for your health than a ketchup product stemming from conventionally grown non-organic tomatoes? Of course not! A product whose ingredient list is almost free of food additives remains a very interesting choice, organic or not.

In addition, several studies appear contradictory about the nutritional value of organic vegetables and fruits. While some of these organic foods sometimes contain more antioxidants, the difference between the nutritional value of organic products and that of conventional products is so small, one cannot conclude to significant benefits. In other words, eating organic is not automatically any “healthier” but undoubtedly, it is a healthier choice for the environment!

 

Is eating “organic” a “greener” choice?

For sure! Organic agriculture enthusiasts have an unequivocal respect for sustainable development and the overall health of our environment. By setting aside pesticides, fertilizers and herbicides, as well as eliminating the use of genetically modified organisms (GMO), organic agriculture helps maintain soil quality and biodiversity of our agricultural fields ( birds, insects, etc.).

 

Does eating organic cost more?

The cost of organic food production certainly has an impact on the purchase price of these products by the consumer. Because their production methods set aside the use of chemicals, organic producers face higher risks of diseases in crops and animals than their counter parts. This is certainly reflected on the price tag. However, it is worth taking a look and comparing organic and non-organic foods on your next visit to the market. You might just be surprised by the minimal cost difference considering the positive impact organic farming has on Mother Earth.

 

Does organic food really taste better?

Although science has failed to prove that organic foods taste better, nothing prevents you from experimenting and seeing by yourself if there really is a difference! Since their flavors vary slightly, some vegetables and fruits could suddenly become popular with your children.

 

References:

1)      Extenso. Le Centre de référence sur la nutrition de l’Université de Montréal. Consommation responsable, Un produit bio c’est quoi ? Sur Internet :  http://www.extenso.org/article/un-produit-bio-c-est-quoi

2)      Dangour AD, Lock K, Hayter A, Aikenhead A, Allen E, Uauy R. Nutrition-related health effects of organic foods: a systematic review. Am J Clin Nutr. 2010;92:203-10.

3)      Bourn D, Prescott J. A comparison of the nutritional value, sensory qualities and food safety of organically and conventionally produced foods.  CritRev Food SciNutr. 2002;42(1): 1-34

Categories : Organic

< Go back to advice