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Organic vs. Non-organic Produce

Updated on January 2, 2007

Organic Foods

Humans have been growing produce organically for thousands of years.Today, the USDA has strict regulations governing the production of organic produce.In general, the use of genetically engineered seeds and methods, chemicals or radiation as preservatives, and chemically based fertilizers and pesticides are not allowed. Organic agricultural methods are more ecologically proper, sustainable, less harmful to the environment and overall are more energy efficient.

Organic produce are richer in vitamins, minerals, enzymes, trace elements and other nutrients than the fruits and vegetables produced by chemical based methods. In a recent study, antioxidant levels found in organically grown vegetables were almost 30% higher than conventional chemically enhanced vegetables.

Perhaps the most important reason to consume organic produce is that the human bodies were not designed to be constantly bombarded with chemicals and biologically altered products on a long term basis. Many of the problems associated with the non-organic foods will take years if not generations to show clear "cause and effect" consequences on our health. What we do know is that the herbicides and the pesticides used in non-organic farming are all "toxic" and in general, intake of toxic foods is bad for our health. The long term physiological and neurological damages done to the human health by consuming non-organic foods are numerous and very complex.

Another major health concern with the consumption of non-organic foods is the industry's wide and heavy use of antibiotics and growth hormones as supplements in animal feed. These supplements are used primarily to make the animals grow faster, bigger and less disease prone, leading to higher production yields. Numerous studies indicate that traces of these supplements remain in the food chain. It is not unreasonable to assume that the infusion of these biological and chemical agents into the food chain may be partially responsible for human obesity and other serious and growing health problems such as diabetes, coronary illnesses, autism, etc., etc.

Organic produce and food products are becoming more and more mainstream.They are becoming more available in supermarkets. However, farmer's markets, smaller organic health food stores and community supported agriculture (CSA) are more reliable outlets for organic produce.

For information on organic foods and where to get them you may visit the following websites: http://www.localharvest.org/, http://www.cooperativegrocer.coop/, http://www.wholefoods.com/, http://www.happycow.net/.

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    • Rebecca Furtado profile image

      Rebecca Furtado 

      5 years ago from Anderson, Indiana

      I think a lot of food loses it's nutrition in the processing . Canned food is high in sodium and I can not imagine having food soaked in sodium does not effect it's basic nutritional value.

    • profile image

      Brian 

      6 years ago

      I've never eaten organic in my life and I'm very healthy... I, too, have doubts without sited material. None of you can actually prove that the organic "laws" are enforced properly. I've read articles where inspectors found many organic farmers not being up to code but had no way of enforcing it and taking them off the market. Also, do any of you realize how much money is made in organic farming? It's BIG BUSINESS. It's not a local farmer down the road. Billions are made every year.

    • profile image

      cowgirl 

      6 years ago

      This is def. True organic farming is so much better for you how do you figure that if they pump a cow with all these hormones its better for you? Why do you think study show that girls are develping faster these days then back in the day?

    • profile image

      Mel 

      7 years ago

      I think it is sad that people day every day because of the bad foods that have become mainstream and call you weird because youe want healthier choices. I remember when junk food was a luxury, now it is the other way around healthy food is a luxury. You want proof that non organic is crappy? Look around you so many people are dying of cancer. If that isnt proof enough, I dont know what is.

    • profile image

      kirk 

      7 years ago

      this is terrible

    • profile image

      nobody 

      7 years ago

      awesome

    • profile image

      :) 

      7 years ago

      ???????????????????????????????

    • profile image

      aliens 

      7 years ago

      We turn green because we eat so much organics but we can't think because of the organics.

    • profile image

      michel Jackson 

      7 years ago

      i was killed by organics

    • profile image

      somebody 

      7 years ago

      i lost the game when i ate an organic food product

    • profile image

      Justin Bieber 

      7 years ago

      Organics make your voice higher so use organics. I defintly recomend the ones at No Frills.

    • profile image

      The bogey man 

      7 years ago

      I eat non organics a lot and they make me live longer but also make me veryyyy veryyyy scary. They also make invisible when I want to be.

      ssssssssssssssCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCAAAAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRYYYYYYY

      WAHHHHH WAAHHHHH HAWHWHAWHAHWAHWHAWHAHWHAWHAHWAHWHAWH

    • profile image

      George Washington 

      7 years ago

      Back in my day we ate organics and they were real good. They were Canadian to which makes the food better

    • profile image

      miss-melis 

      7 years ago

      missannee - I like that.

      For all those that disagree, keep feeding your poor children fast food every day. When they are overweight, unhealthy and unhappy with life, you only have have one person to balme. YOU.

    • profile image

      missannee 

      7 years ago

      Then let all the non 'believers' eat their non organic &junk foods..will leave more room for the organic/health conscious on this earth...

    • profile image

      TW 

      7 years ago

      recent study done by researchers at Washington State University wanted to find out if these consumer beliefs were accurate. They tested both organic and conventional strawberries grown in 13 side-by-side California fields.

      Here are a few of their findings:

      - The organic strawberries had significantly higher antioxidant activity and concentrations of ascorbic acid and phenolic compounds.

      - The organic strawberries had longer shelf life.

      - The organic strawberries had more dry matter, or, "more strawberry in the strawberry."

      - Anonymous testers, working at times under red light so the fruit color would not bias them, found one variety of organic strawberries was sweeter, had better flavor, and once a white light was turned on, better appearance.

    • profile image

      Bea 

      8 years ago

      Okay, given the benefit of the doubt whether or not organic produce contains higher amounts of nutrients or whatsoever, organic farming and its produce still do benefit the environment. It does not pave way to the evolvution of species of insects and bugs resistant to pesticides and other chemicals unlike what inorganic farming does.

    • profile image

      Obama 

      8 years ago

      Actually its a proven fact that organic foods dont do anything more for your health. conventional foods dont harm your health. therefore you are paying more for food that is labled "organic" but it doesnt do anything different than conventional foods.

    • profile image

      George W. Bush 

      8 years ago

      Damn none of you lazy assholes even check the sources, and just hate because you are too weak to stop eating processed foods, instead of looking at your current situation and wondering why you're obese, you start trash-talking people that tell you to eat organic fruits and vegetables and cut off the intake of processed foods because you can't bear the thought of putting down the chips or the burgers, we as humans have been eating organic fruits and vegetables and guess what we have been blooming in reproduction, no diabetes no cancer, until recently all these new dangerous chemicals we are being exposed to is causing all these new diseases and birth defects, so just take a hard look at yourself and wake up from your life long food coma and do something about it instead of bitching to someone that is obviously trying to give people a better way of life

    • profile image

      creel 

      8 years ago

      i hate this site b/c alot of it is fake

    • profile image

      nick kendrick 

      8 years ago

      i hate being a loner !

    • profile image

      mike hawk 

      8 years ago

      organic is icky

    • profile image

      Jason K. 

      8 years ago

      uh,,, where is the proof? because you say so? no-I don't think so. show me your sources.

    • profile image

      tammy 

      8 years ago

      You need to watch the movie food Inc... Its a sneak behind the scenes on how your non organic foods are grown.That's crazy to hear people say they don't believe organic is better. Do you think putting chemicals in your body is better? I did little study's for myself. I took a non organic apple and an organic apple, juiced them separate.non organic apple was very clear and organic apple had a brown tint.Do you know why? Because the organic had no chemicals nothing added.Why do you think the non organic apple was clear? Why don't you people do study's yourself before totally outing on organic.

    • profile image

      cheesecake 

      8 years ago

      I like cheese cake

    • profile image

      lulu 

      8 years ago

      go to camerons paintball centre upper james hamilton it's the best

    • profile image

      lulu 

      8 years ago

      i like to paitball

    • profile image

      lulu 

      8 years ago

      this sucks

    • profile image

      random 

      8 years ago

      ok so i agree with this ariticle, but I also believe that you have to site sources, or else how do I know that you are not juts making this up??? I do believe that organic food is better than non-organic, but I am sure other readers who still have doubts would more likely believe your story if you cited your sources.

    • profile image

      reid 

      8 years ago

      sorry the fact was a years amount***

    • vic profile imageAUTHOR

      vic 

      8 years ago

      I don't know where you are getting your information from, but they don't make sense. A general statement of " a cup of coffee presenting 1000X the cancer risk of a lifetime consumption of pesticides" sound plain ridiculous!

    • profile image

      Reid 

      8 years ago

      WEll the fact is that every farmer uses pesticides and herbicides but non-organic farmers use proven synthetically created ones that have been proven healthy. the 2006 cancer research foundation stated pesticide residue is not a cause of cancer and that a cup of coffee has 1000X the cancer risk than a lifetimes consumption of pesticide residue. not only is organic unpractical it is just as dangerous. using manure instead of vitamin rich fertilizers proven to work. ecol i and salmonella are common pathogens found in manure federalizers and can stay on produce. what it all comes down to is economics. with organic farming only 4 billion people would be sustainable on the planet today.. what approximate 3 billion are you willing to let starve?

    • profile image

      L Sanchez 

      9 years ago

      I respectfully disagree with Andy and Frank. Here is an article that cites references for that claims that organic produce is indeed higher in antioxidants than non-organic produce -- up to 40% higher in antioxidants. Of greater concern, however, are the effects of the tons of pesticides and chemical fertilizers used on our foods everyday. You may not choose to believe it, but it is certainly worth looking into! http://www.huffingtonpost.com/gary-hirshberg/uk-st...

    • profile image

      frank 

      9 years ago

      New study released:

      http://www.ajcn.org/cgi/content/abstract/ajcn.2009...

      Conclusions: On the basis of a systematic review of studies of satisfactory quality, there is no evidence of a difference in nutrient quality between organically and conventionally produced foodstuffs. The small differences in nutrient content detected are biologically plausible and mostly relate to differences in production methods.

    • vic profile imageAUTHOR

      vic 

      9 years ago

      Perhaps part of the reason for so many types and cases of cancer may be due to consuming foods that are loaded with chemicals. I kind of like the idea of growing one's own vegetables to have total confidence in what goes into the production of the produce.

    • profile image

      David 

      9 years ago

      I agree with Andy. How do you know Oranic is so good for us? Maybe what we should all do is start our own gardens and grow our vegetables ourselves, and see how Organic they can be. also they do not say what chemicals they are using on the organic produce. How are they keeping bugs off the produce, how are they getting rid of the weeds, that grow around the plants? What kind of compost are they using to grow organic? I think if american's should go back and look what farmers used back in the 30's- 60, before there was an EPA? They lived a longer life, You didn't hear alot about cancer like you do now. Seems like we are hearing more about cancer now than back in the old days.

    • profile image

      GLORY 

      9 years ago

      There isno doubt that organic food is more healthy because it is chemical free.It is more tasty ,it provides real natural taste of the food.

      http://hubpages.com/hub/Organic_Products...

    • profile image

      andy 

      10 years ago

      You need to site sources. Why should I believe that organic foods have more vitamins or antioxidants than non-organic. What methods did you use to determine this. What exactly do you mean by ecologically "proper"? It is unreasonable to assume these chemicals lead to diabetes etc... These statements should be avoided if you are not going to site a single shred of evidence to support them. The environmental movement is full of hacks making sweeping generalizations is gaining notoriety for skewing data. We need more responsible intelligent reporting not hippie rants.

    • Jennifer profile image

      Jennifer 

      10 years ago

      Great hub! Very informative.

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