What Can I Eat if I am Following an Organic Diet?
If you’re thinking of adopting an organic diet, it could be because of ecological concerns or because you’re worried about food safety. Maybe you just want to eat healthier and believe that this would be a good way to go about doing it. Whatever your reasons, there’s little doubt that eating organic foods is better for you. Many people who have chemical sensitivities and allergies report feeling better when they go organic.
When you’re looking for organic foods, don’t be confused by terms like “natural,” “free range,” or “hormone free.” These terms actually aren’t regulated by law, and can be fairly meaningless – particularly the term “natural.” There are many things that occur in nature that sensible people don’t want in their bodies.
When you’re looking at labels, 100% organic means that the food contains no synthetic ingredients. Organic refers to foods that contain at least 95% organic ingredients. For a product to be labelled as made with organic ingredients, it has to have a minimum of 70% organic ingredients.
Organic food can’t be treated with synthetic pesticides. Biological pesticides are permitted. Sewage sludge can’t be used, and the food can’t be bioengineered. Because growing pesticide-free food is more labor-intensive, you’ll end up spending more for organic food than you would for other produce, and you may have to live with some imperfections in the appearance. However, if you can afford to go organic, and you don’t mind some spots here and there, you probably will feel better about your health.
The problem with pesticides is the residue, and some foods are worse than others. If you’re on a budget, you might want to spend your money on organic produce when the variety is one that’s particularly susceptible to residue. The vegetables and fruits that are most susceptible to residue are as follows:
The vegetables and fruits that you can expect to have the least residue are as follows:
By choosing organic varieties of the fruits and vegetables most likely to have pesticide residue, you can go organic on a budget. Of course, if you want to adopt a true organic diet, you will have to incur some expense, but your peace of mind may be worth it.