I made oxtail stew this week. I have never, ever considered making this or eating this until I started to heal my body using nutritional principles. As a matter of fact, I am also incorporating liver into my diet as well as more fermented foods.
As the husband would say, “which alien life form abducted my wife?” He would then probably want to thank said alien properly by offering him a beer, while verbalizing gratitude for more meat and less tofu in his meals.
While many vegans and vegetarians may protest my meal, anyone who is knowledgable about diet, nutrition, and body chemistry knows that there is no single diet that can meet the needs of everyone. The foods your body will thrive on varies depending on culture and region, lifestyle, hormones, and particular health conditions that are present. Even Bill Clinton, who adopted a primarily vegan diet over the past year, knows his body enough that he needs chicken or fish a couple times a week to really feel good and get the proper nutrients he needs.
Regardless of diet, one thing that I truly believe is that everyone should be eating organic. There is a lot of information out there about organic versus conventional. Should you spend the extra money? Is it any healthier?
Why Eat Organic?
There are tons of articles debating organic vs conventional out there, some that tote 'research', others that speak of ethics and personal preference. It can be very confusing, especially since many families are on a budget and organic food is generally more expensive.
While working toward self-healing, I (Lore) have stuck to mostly organic produce. At first, though, it was an “experiment”, questioning is this really worth the extra money? Plus, the organic veggies seemed so much smaller! I began a series of taste tests, using the husband as a guinea pig. The conversation went something like this:
Me: “Tell me which one tastes better.”
Him: “What did you hide in my food?” (A legitimate question, sometimes I am guilty of this.)
Me: “I didn't hide anything, just taste and tell me which is better.”
Him: “This is a trick. I know it.”
Me: “Just eat/drink it.”
Every time, the husband chose the organic product, whether it was bottled vegetable juice, fruit, or canned soup. In general, the organic products always seemed to taste better.
Another good reason to eat organic is the pesticide, herbicide, and fungicide impact on our food source. Not only is it sprayed on food, but it then leaches into the soil and water table. These chemicals are a poison, meant to kill. Big-wigs such as DuPont and Monsanto will tote that the amount of chemicals in conventional (and GMO) produce is so minimal that the impact on human health is of no concern. So then why do those with cancer switch to organic products to heal and/or remain in remission? Why are we seeing increasing rates of cancer, infertility issues, and chronic disease? Isn't it a conflict of interest to manufacture pesticides and then downplay the health and safety benefits of organic products?
Generally speaking, our food and product safety practices in here the US are a little back-asswards. One has to prove that an item isn't harmful in order to sell for human use. Plus, FDA approval (for whatever thats worth) often takes up to 5 years. By the time the greater population has been used as a lab rat, the consequences of food/drug experimentation has surfaced. In Europe, one has to prove an item is safe first, a much more involved and researched process. This is why DuPont and Monsanto focus most of their efforts right here, in the good 'ol US. They can't get away with their shenanigans overseas.
Organic products do not contain GMOs, icky preservatives, and high fructose corn syrup. If you read the labels of organic goods, you will notice the ingredient list is a whole lot shorter, and more pronounceable, than its conventional counterpart. Just eliminating the 'filler' garbage makes the product so much better for you! (Keep in mind, I am speaking of food products. The organic label is popping up in cosmetics too, but it is not really regulated.)
Many studies are now showing that conventional produce is lacking in nutrients since is so far removed from the fruits and vegetables that our ancestors grew. In attempts to make it bigger, better, faster growing, pest-resistant, we have removed all of the natural goodness and created Franken-food instead.
As in any business, there are those that unethically claim a label to sell more products. You need to know your food sources! A few farms might claim to be “organic” but in reality, only adhere to some of the required regulations. On the other hand, many of your local CSAs and farms may not be certified “organic” (it's expensive to acquire the label) but they use solely organic and sustainable practices.
Ultimately, you have to decide if you're willing to gamble with your health. Is it worth the extra expense and effort to safeguard your future well-being? Is it worth supporting local farmers that also strive to return to a more sustainable and environmentally friendly way of growing food? For me it is.
Check It Out
Kris Carr weighs in on why she buys organic. This subject hits close to home for her after being diagnosed with cancer. Read her blog post here.
Dr. Mercola gives his take on whether or not organic foods are healthier or safer. Warning...he is all about the scientific data so put your 'thinking' cap on! Read his article here.
The Environmental Working Group is a fantastic resource for identifying food and product safety. You can read their consumer guides from food to sunscreens to cosmetics. If you worry about the stuff you put in or on your body, this is a brilliant resource!
Plus, they have an APP!! Get the Dirty Dozen EWG app for iPhone and Android phones!
Or, download their Shopper's Guide to Pesticides in Produce.