One in ten women regularly consumes organic food during pregnancy

Sunday, January 30, 2011 by: Jonathan Benson, staff writer
Tags: organic food, pregnancy, health news

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(NaturalNews) The growth of the organic food and personal care product sectors over the past decade-or-so has been truly astounding, with reports indicating, for instance, that organic fruit and vegetable sales increased by almost 375 percent between 2000 and 2010 ( And now, a new report out of Norway has found that one in ten pregnant Norwegian women has gone organic.

Researchers from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health evaluated roughly 65,000 pregnant women from the Norwegian Mother and Child Cohort Study, assessing their organic buying habits in six categories: milk and dairy products, bread and cereals, eggs, vegetables, fruit, and meat.

"We know little about the consumption of organic food during pregnancy, and the goal of this study was to find out what is consumed and the characteristics of women who choose organic food," said Hanne Torjusen, a Ph.D. student who worked on the study.

They found that women who chose organic during their pregnancies had varying nutritional habits and lifestyle preferences. Some of the women were low income, others were students, and some even smoked or drank during their pregnancies, which are considered to be generally unhealthy behaviors. In other words, it was not simply the well-to-do, health-guru women that recognized the value of consuming organic food.

"We see that although there are several elements that are consistent with health recommendations, organic food consumption in pregnancy is not unambiguously associated with what is perceived as a healthy lifestyle -- those with the highest education and income," said Torjusen. "This shows that it is important to take into account other factors besides education and income in the further research of possible health effects of organic foods in the diet."

Research has indicated that organic food generally contains denser nutrient profiles and more vitamins and minerals than conventional food. This idea is supported by a study published in the Journal of Applied Nutrition that found that the nutritional value of food depends on how and in what conditions it is grown (

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