Organic Food Vs. Non-organic food

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by BIGdkluver, Jan 13, 2010.

  1. BIGdkluver

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    Is organic food really better for a person than non-organic food?

    I'm rather health-conscious about what I eat, and I'm wondering if organic food (fresh fruit and vegies, etc.) is really any better than regular food.

    Take bananas, for instance. The organic ones cost a lot more money than the regular ones, and the organic ones are often smaller and have more dark spots and bruises on them.

    So, is there any solid evidence that organic produce is better and healthier for a person to eat than non-organic?

    Thanks for your input!
     
  2. nudeyorker

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    For me it's a matter of meat products that were not given antibiotics and growth hormones and produce that was not treated with chemical pesticides. I wash every piece of produce I bring into the house. Something like a banana I'm not going to worry about so much as I would a strawberry. Something with a skin that I am going to remove and not ingest I really am not so concerned if it's organic or not.
     
  3. ubered

    ubered New Member

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    Organic food is definately more healthy. In fact I'd go even further - research shows that non-organic food can be a health risk.

    A study by the University of Valencia (Spain), shows that in conventional intensive agriculture under plastic, 40 kg (88 pounds) of pesticides are used on average per hectare in each harvest. The effect of such a huge volume of pesticides on human health is difficult to determine, and cause - effect is difficult to establish. However, studies have shown that this exposure to what are effectively chemical toxins for the body may play a role in neurological, reproductive and immunological disfunctions.

    Many of the toxins used in agriculture are bioacumulative - meaning they stay in the food chain for decades, causing chronic toxicity. This is especially dangerous for farmworkers: a study in southern Spain related 25 deaths and 506 cases of intoxication to pesticide toxins.

    It is known that some of these toxins are carcenogenic. The International Agency for Cancer Research in Lyon (France) showed 26 cancer-causing pesticides to be in common use in Europe.

    Aside from direct human health issues, these pesticides contaminate water systems and destroy the soil's natural ability to replenish its fertility by killing invertebrate life, creating impoverished soil that needs fertilisers to grow things in synthetically. This only benefits the huge companies that sell pesticides and fertilisers and have the farming world by the balls. Meanwhile, prices for farmers get lower and lower.

    Much intensively farmed food is produced out of its natural season and therefore doesn't ripen under natural conditions. This means that nutrients don't get time to develop and fast growth through fertiliser use increases their water content. As a result, conventional produce does not taste as good or have as many nutrients.

    The reason your bananas are smaller and have stains on them is because they're natural. That's what bananas really look like. They've maybe not grown as large because they're not pumped full of synthetics and maybe have stains on them because they've been attacked by pests to a degree.

    Yeah, organic food is more expensive. But it is more nutritious, tastes better and is not a potential health risk. The first time I tried an organic tomato grown in season I was convinced. It tasted nothing like the ones I was used to - seriously one of the most delicious things I've ever tasted. I suddenly realised what we've done to food, and what real, natural food tastes like.
     
  4. EagleCowboy

    EagleCowboy Well-Known Member

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    What you are calling "regular food" is really the non-organic food. What your grandfather and great grandfather ate is what you call "organic food", and to them, that was regular food.

    Yes, organic food is *FAR* better than non-organic food. Your description of the organic food doesn't sound right. Here in the southern midwest, the organic food here is bigger, healthier, and even looks better that what you call non-organic.

    Fruits and vegetables should be grown without pesticides of any kind, and all meats should be free range. Free range means that the animals aren't "mass produced", are allowed to roam freely to get their exercise, do what they normally would do, and have a life, with no selective breeding, no antibiotics and steroids. To do what they normally would do if humans weren't around to mess with them.

    If you haul your butt down to a chemicals testing lab and have yourself checked for chemical toxicity levels, you would freak out in a major way to find just how poisoned you are now eating just "regular food". Your grandfathers weren't poisoned like you are now. And you wonder why you people have the health problems you do. Progress isn't always better.

    Grow your own food then compare it to the "normal food".
     
  5. Deno

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    I know this much, if I buy a bag of organic onions I can never get to use them before they go bad. If I buy non organic onions they last longer and don't sprout as fast and stay firm.
     
  6. D_Anton_Pavlovich_Jerkhov

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    I think organic food is really superior. It is not only because they are not sprayed or "enriched" with chemicals, but also because they usually taste better, smell better, and have a lot more nutrients (oligoelements). Soil is the most important factor in the production of food. If the soil is well handled, its production can only yield good things. Cooking methods are also relevant in terms of maintaining the soundness of foods.
     
  7. patrick222

    patrick222 Member

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    Who are the 'organic police' ? How do we that that the high priced organic items are truely organicaly grown and demand a much higher price or are getting ripped off ?
     
  8. vince

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    I find that surprising because when my ex-wife and I switched to organic produce in the early nineties, one of the things we noticed was that the veggies kept much longer than normal commercially grown variety.

    We also noted that the family's incident of colds and flu went down and that I got fewer migraines.
     
  9. thadjock

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    well not to be a contrarian or anyting but chemical herbicides, pesticides and fertilizers have been in use for the commercial production of food for over 100 yrs, that means basically 5 generations have been eating food grown with chemicals to one degree or another. and the chemicals used in the beginning were FAR worse than those in use today, many of the early pesticides were arsenic and cyanide based, and even the most toxic ones from the 50s and 60s have been banned by the epa.

    going organic is a nice fantasy but is everybody who has a cushy desk job going to go out and weed a 2000 acre potato field with a hoe? and without chemicals are you just sit there and watch insects eat your crop or a fungus kill all the plants. farmers don't use chemicals becasue they want to poison you, they use them because consumers demand cheap food and we expect less than 2% of the population (famers) to grow all of it for the rest of us.

    the math is simple, there is not enough arable land on this planet to feed the population we have now without using chemicals, fertilizers, and GMO crops. we've passed the tipping point on that.
     
    #9 thadjock, Jan 13, 2010
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2010
  10. Sergeant_Torpedo

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    organic food is a lifestyle choice for the chattering middle classes. Most peasants in the world subsist on 100% organic foods but sadly don't get enugh of it because it is exported. Organic food in Europe is often of inferior quality, vegetables and fruit that don't keep longer than 5 days is not good. My last box of delivered organic produce was 250% more expensive than supermarket: the potatoes began supturating after 3 days, the beet tasted terrible and the greens were limper than politicians excuse.
     
  11. vince

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    So says you. Talk about the chattering class... lol. If you get off your butt and go out and choose your own food instead of lazily having it delivered, you might get fresher, cheaper produce that keeps longer in the larder. Somebody saw you coming man. What do you expect when you buy food sight unseen? Was it paid for in advance as well?

    I don't know the situation in Europe. But the organic vegetables we buy in Vancouver and in Turkey are fresh and keep well.
     
  12. helgaleena

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    Organic foods actually contain more nutrients when chemically analyzed because they have been grown on soil which is healthier. This has been proven in the laboratory. The soil's health directly impacts the health of those who eat its vegetation, be they farm animals or humans. That is why in areas where there is a widespread mineral deficiency, livestock can suffer and need supplements.

    There are boards to certify compliance to organic as well as biodynamic standards. Biodynamic is known more in Europe than the USA; it's organic plus use of specific homeopathic preparations in the compost.

    Presently organic agriculture in the United States is becoming more a part of the 'factory farm' status quo, and I am hoping that it catches on. If I am lucky, I can get reasonably priced organic produce of certain kinds for cheaper than non-organic now and then.

    If you really want to know if organic is better for you, I suggest buying the same variety in both organic and non organic and doing a taste comparison. Very often an organic Gala apple, for example, has a more intense and pleasant flavor than a non organic Gala apple.
     
  13. 80deezel

    80deezel New Member

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    Non organic growers use Ethylene gas to alter ripeness versus organics that wait for ripeness before picking.The gas gives it's own flavor by breaking down starch into sugar using the enzyme alpha-amylase.We grow our own organic crop and it does take longer and will spoil faster so the loss is great compared to the price but the flavor is like comparing Mercedes to a Chevy.
     
  14. B_cloverboy

    B_cloverboy New Member

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    The way I see it we are living in an interesting era, where, as thadjock has mentioned, our population has surpassed what the earth can naturally or organically provide for us if we want to keep up our current lifestyles. However this era, like most, will eventually pass away. The worlds population continues to increase, the more land we take for agriculture and the more we use pesticides and fertilizers, the more we disintegrate the biodiversity of our planet. Every species has its limits, sooner or later we'll hit ours and it will be a terrible time for the human race.
     
  15. EagleCowboy

    EagleCowboy Well-Known Member

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    NOT true. There is plenty of land available. Even in the suburbs. This is always the mindset of lazy city UNslickers that don't get out much. And, as always, lazy city people wouldn't DARE entertain the thought of growing their own food. To find more land than the city offers, you have to go OUTSIDE. Not inside--OUTSIIIIIIIIIDE. Yes, there is another world OUTSIIIIIIIDE the city that contains--dare I say it?? NATURE!!

    As for the pesticides used, sure they've been in use for over 100 years. But it only affected less than 10% of the population and those were pretty much city people. Anyone living outside the city grew their own crops and raised their own food. It wasn't until the late 50's that it's use became so widespread that it started threatening everyone.

    WHY are you *SO* convinced that you *HAVE* to use chemicals?? If you have to use chemicals in your own garden, you aren't doing it right. AT ALL.
     
  16. thadjock

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    we're not talking about a couple of patio tomatoes.

    you cannot manage commercial farms that are measured in square miles without the use of chemicals and commercial fertilizers. if it were possible they'd be growing everything organic because chemicals and fertilizers are not cheap inputs.

    but I'd really luv to be there when you tell everybody they have to grow 100% of all their own food on their suburban yards and do it organically.
     
  17. unique_exposure

    unique_exposure New Member

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    I tried to keep organic when I can, it can definitely be expensive. As far as pesticides go, Apples hold the most amount of all fruit.

    How to Tell If Your Fruit or Veggie Is Organic: Check PLU Code on sticker

    Grown "Chemically Assisted":
    Starts with four(4). Four digits long. Eg 4022

    Genetically / Man Made:
    Starts with 8, 5 digits long.

    Organic. Any PLU code starting with 9 (nine)... "Nine is fine."​

    ------------

    GMO however, is one thing I would prevent in my diet if more possible.
    Unfortunately, GM has already infiltrated much of our common food supply, such as corn. (Eg: Corn syrup, oil, tons of things have corn in them. Large suppliers buy GM crop).

    Old-timer evil corporate villain Monstano takes most the brunt of the Anti-GM movement; and it is well deserved. What business does the creators of DDT, Agent Orange, rBHG, have, in creating untested foods which the majority is already eating.

    Journal of Biological Sciences:

    Jan 13, 2010 (skip down to point if bored already):

    We therefore conclude that our data strongly suggests that these GM maize varieties induce a state of hepatorenal toxicity. This can be due to the new pesticides (herbicide or insecticide) present specifically in each type of GM maize, although unintended metabolic effects due to the mutagenic properties of the GM transformation process cannot be excluded [42]. All three GM maize varieties contain a distinctly different pesticide residue associated with their particular GM event (glyphosate and AMPA in NK 603, modified Cry1Ab in MON 810, modified Cry3Bb1 in MON 863). These substances have never before been an integral part of the human or animal diet and therefore their health consequences for those who consume them, especially over long time periods are currently unknown.

    Our analysis highlights that the kidneys and liver as particularly important on which to focus such research as there was a clear negative impact on the function of these organs in rats consuming GM maize varieties for just 90 days.

    Additional Scientific Journal:
    A Comparison of the Effects of Three GM Corn Varieties on Mammalian Health

    More, and Recent:
    Germany Bans All Monsanto GM Maize Corn

    Monstanto is pretty typical of a greed corp, where just about any means is used to protect the bottom line.
     
  18. Viking_UK

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    Organic produce having a shorter shelf life is a fiction which supermarkets promote for two reasons: 1) people who don't know any better believe that it won't last as long as non-organic produce, so if it goes off sooner, it must be healthier. 2) selling premium produce with a short shelf life gets people to come back for more sooner and they spend more money. They do a similar thing with bread. The large supermarket chains sell bread which is closer to its sell-by date. The same brand of bread in a small shop will generally have a couple of days longer shelf life because it hasn't been sat in the distribution warehouse for a few days. The bottom line is if you want proper organic produce which has been stored properly, don't buy it from a supermarket.

    When I was young, my family grew almost all of our own food and it lasted all through the winter because it was stored properly. Root vegetables last much longer if they haven't been washed, and longer still if they're stored in soil or sand. Even apples and pears should last for a couple of months if kept in cool, dry, dark conditions.
     
  19. ubered

    ubered New Member

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    Hey Thad...

    This isn't true. A vegetable plot with an experienced gardener can produce up to 5 (yep, 5) times more per square acre than an intensive conventional farm. We'd need more farmers though - I'd be happy to give it a go.

    They're also more energy efficient. Intensive farming makes our food totally dependent on fossil fuels. Feeding ourselves now that oil discoveries have started to decline is a huge problem. We really need to start thinking of alternatives now... GMO crops are more of the same - still totally oil dependent.

    There's no other choice. When we say our life is unsustainable, that doesnt just mean it's bad for the environment - it means it simply can't continue.

     
    #19 ubered, Jan 14, 2010
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2010
  20. Viking_UK

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    Yup, that's right. It's amazing how productive a small plot can be if managed properly.
     
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