organic

The facts about organic foods; having more vitamins and minerals protects you from chronic disease

Sunday, July 18, 2004
by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger
Editor of NaturalNews.com (See all articles...)

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Summary

Here's an outstanding overview of the facts about organic foods and how they improve your health standing. Highly recommended reading.

The bottom line? Organic foods contain more vitamins and minerals, no pesticides, fewer additives, and much lower levels of toxic chemicals. As a result, they have tremendous potential for preventing chronic diseases like cancer, diabetes, heart disease and many others.

As a bonus, when you purchase organic foods, you support organic, sustainable farming practices that are good for the environment, too.

Original source:
http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/medicalnews.php?newsid=10587

Details

  • This factsheet is a summary of an article published in "Coronary and Diabetic Care in the UK 2004" by the Association of Primary Care Groups and Trusts (UK).
  • It was written by James Cleeton, Policy Projects Co-ordinator at the Soil Association.
  • appears to have the potential to lower the incidence of common conditions such as cancer, coronary heart disease, allergies and hyperactivity in children.
  • The routine use of synthetic pesticides is not allowed under organic standards.
  • Currently, over 400 chemicals can be regularly used in conventional farming to kill weeds, insects and other pests that attack crops.
  • For example, Cox's apples can be sprayed up to 16 times with 36 different pesticides.
  • 7 Only four chemicals are allowed in restricted circumstances under Soil Association standards.
  • "Organic food contains fewer residues of pesticides used in conventional agriculture, so buying organic is one way to reduce the chances that your food contains these pesticides" (Sir John Krebs, Chair, Food Standards Agency, Cheltenham Science Festival debate, 5th June 2003).
  • "Consumers who wish to minimise their dietary pesticide exposure can do so with confidence by buying organically grown food" (Baker et al 2002).
  • The most dangerous chemicals used in farming such as organophosphates [pesticides] have been linked with a range of conditions such as cancer, decreasing male fertility, foetal abnormalities, chronic fatigue syndrome in children and Parkinson's disease.
  • 8,9 Pesticide residues have been ranked among the top three environmental cancer risks by the American Government.
  • In recent years, UK Government research has consistently found pesticide residues in a third of food, including residues of more than one chemical in apples, baby food, bread, cereal bars, fresh salmon, lemons, lettuces, peaches, nectarines, potatoes and strawberries.
  • 11 Not all foodstuffs are checked; instead a small number of different products is tested every 3 months and the results published by the Pesticide Safety Directorate (PSD).
  • After pressure from NGOs [non-governmental organisations] such as the Soil Association, the PSD has begun testing for multiple pesticide residues in its samples because evidence suggests that when acting in combination, harmful effects of pesticide residues may be increased.
  • Combinations of low-level insecticides, herbicides and nitrates have been shown to be toxic at levels that individual chemicals are not.13 - 16 It is clearly an enormous task to test all possible combinations of the 400 permitted pesticides currently in use.
  • Women with breast cancer are five to nine times more likely to have pesticide residues in their blood than those who do not.18 Previous studies have shown that those with occupational exposure to pesticides have higher rates of cancer.19 - 21 The apparent link between hormone dependent cancers, such as those of the breast and prostate, may be via endocrine disrupting chemicals [compounds that artificially affect the hormone system] such as 2,4D and Atrazine (both herbicides, now banned or about to be banned).
  • In a study of children aged 2 --4 living in Seattle, concentrations of pesticide residues up to six times higher were found in children eating conventionally farmed fruit and vegetables compared with those eating organic food.23 Whilst the presence of pesticide residues in children eating conventional food has been confirmed, the full effect of such pesticides are unknown.
  • Food colourings and additives can cause a range of health problems in adults and children.
  • Although around 300 additives are permitted in conventional food only 30 are allowed under Soil Association standards.
  • Some additives found in organic food are added for legal reasons including iron, thiamine (vitamin B) and nicotinic acid (vitamin B3) in white flour, and various vitamins and minerals in different types of baby foods.
  • All artificial colourings and artificial sweeteners are banned in organic food.
  • Specific ingredients and additives not allowed in organic food are monosodium glutamate, aspartame, phosphoric acid and hydrogenated fats.
  • In each case their use has been banned because of evidence that they can be damaging to health.
  • For example, hydrogenated fats (also known as trans fats) have been directly linked with increased rates of heart disease, cancer and skin disease.
  • 28,29,30,31 The FSA [Food Standards Agency] acknowledges that they have no known nutritional benefits and increase the risk of coronary heart disease.
  • The FSA website advises that people should try to cut down their consumption of hydrogenated fat.
  • Genetically modified organisms are banned from organic food.
  • The potential health effects of GM foods are unknown.
  • Michael Meacher the former Minister for the Environment recently stated that "We have had no systematic clinical or biochemical trials of the effects on human beings of eating GM food".
  • A paper in Nutrition and Health 33 supports Mr Meacher's position.
  • The authors state that there have only been ten published studies of the health effects of GM food and that the quality of some of these was inadequate.
  • Over half were done in collaboration with companies (fully or partially), and these found no negative effects on body organs.
  • The others were done independently and looked more closely at the effects on the gut lining; in several, evidence of harmful effects were found which remain unexplained.
  • Similar effects on the gut lining were found in an unpublished animal feeding study on a GM tomato.
  • In addition, a study by Newcastle University sponsored by the FSA found that the transgenes [genetically modified organisms] transfer into gut bacteria at detectable levels after only one GM meal.
  • The health effects of these transgenes are unknown and until they have been properly tested people are, in our opinion, wise to avoid eating GM food.
  • UK and US government statistics indicate that levels of trace minerals in fruit and vegetables fell by up to 76% between 1940 and 1991.
  • 34,35 In contrast there is growing evidence that organic fruit and vegetables generally contain more nutrients than non-organic food.
  • The Soil Association conducted a systematic review of the evidence comparing the vitamin and mineral content of organic and conventionally grown food.
  • It was found that, on average, organic food contains higher levels of vitamin C and essential minerals such as calcium, magnesium, iron and chromium.
  • An independent review of the evidence found that organic crops had significantly higher levels of all 21 nutrients analysed compared with conventional produce including vitamin C (27% more), magnesium (29% more), iron (21% more) and phosphorous (14% more).
  • Organic spinach, lettuce, cabbage and potatoes showed particularly high levels of minerals.
  • A high antioxidant intake has been shown to be associated with a reduced incidence of coronary heart disease and some cancers.
  • Forage based diets [a diet based on fresh or dried food as opposed to processed feed] form the basis of organic livestock production systems and have the potential to decrease saturated fat concentrations and to increase the concentrations of omega-3 57, 58 and CLA 59,50,61 in beef.
  • Sperm concentrations have declined and abnormalities in sperm development have been recorded.
  • Double blind placebo-controlled study', Journal of Nutritional Medicine 1, p. 51 -- 57.
  • MAFF and the Royal Society of Chemistry.
  • Dietary Intake and Cell Membrane Levels of Long-Chain n-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids and the Risk of Primary Cardiac Arrest.
  • 47) Richardson AJ, Puri BK.(2002) A randomized double-blind, placebo-controlled study of the effects of supplementation with highly unsaturated fatty acids on ADHD-related symptoms in children with specific learning difficulties.
  • A powerful anti-carcinogen from animal fat sources."
  • Influence of dietary conjugated linoleic acid on lipid metabolism in relation to its anticarcinogenic activity.
  • in Advances in Conjugated Linoleic Acid Research.
  • Proceedings of the 48th International Congress of Meat Science and Technology, Rome.
  • "Conjugated linoleic acid content of milk from cows fed different diets."
  • Conjugated linoleic acid in milk fat: High variation depending on production system.

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About the author: Mike Adams is a consumer health advocate and award-winning journalist with a mission to teach personal and planetary health to the public He is a prolific writer and has published thousands of articles, interviews, reports and consumer guides, and he is well known as the creator of popular downloadable preparedness programs on financial collapse, emergency food storage, wilderness survival and home defense skills. Adams is a trusted, independent journalist who receives no money or promotional fees whatsoever to write about other companies' products. In 2010, Adams launched TV.NaturalNews.com, a natural health video site featuring videos on holistic health and green living. He's also the CEO of a highly successful email newsletter software company that develops software used to send permission email campaigns to subscribers. Adams volunteers his time to serve as the executive director of the Consumer Wellness Center, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, and enjoys outdoor activities, nature photography, Pilates and martial arts training. Known as the 'Health Ranger,' Adams' personal health statistics and mission statements are located at www.HealthRanger.org

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