Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Organic Food – Fuel For Health


As a follow-up to the article The Organic Effect below (, a little more about organic foods.

The switch to and benefits of organic foods – fresh, frozen and canned – seems to be an increasingly popular topic trend in both main stream media and specific health/diet journal publications.  However, as in most life or lifestyle choices, it pays to check out the details.

The paradox of the benefits offered by the more expensive organic food choice is you’re paying extra for what you’re not getting.  Organic foods seem to have a similar nutritional value compared to current-practice mass produced food.  What you are paying extra for is the absence of the chemicals used to achieve highest production rates in mass produced foods – the toxic fungicides, herbicides, artificial fertilizers, pesticides as well as preservatives post-production to prolong shelf life and profit.  The practice of warehousing fresh produce for up to six months, or harvesting whilst green and then force-ripening with gas seems to be increasing.

The study conducted in Sweden, as mentioned above, showed impressive results when the diet was changed from conventional mass-produced foods to organic foods. Initially, all family members showed trace elements of pesticides, fungicides and plant growth regulators. After two weeks on an organic diet, nearly all presence of trace chemicals were removed (urine testing).

Personally I think some of the organic food marketing can be a bit extreme and some shops sell products that are just not affordable to the average consumer. For example, a small bag of activated almonds for $25 seems excessive.

However, I do think purchasing organic fruit and veg is very worthwhile, especially true if you can get to a farmers’ market.  The produce will most likely be local and in season, and you can have a quick chat with the grower about their farming practices.  As well, there are many online organic fruit and veg wholefood warehouses who offer home deliveries of fresh, in season, organic produce.  The way nature intended us to eat.

Alternatively, check out the organic foods offered at most major supermarkets, which, due to volume, can be more reasonably priced.  For example, Woolworths has its own organic line (

And those pesky details – regrettably, not all food labelled as organic is genuine and it pays to check for authenticity.  Look for ‘certified organic’ sourcing rather than just ‘organic’ and check for the Australian certified organic logo   ; more details at

So enjoy all your vegetables – there is wisdom in that! Also cook them quickly (steam or stir fry) to retain the micro nutrients – the more you heat, the more they get broken down. If you are stewing, then cook gently and slowly, flavours develop better that way.