Should I buy Organic?

Let’s start with what organic actually means because unless you know what it means, it’s hard to understand the why. By definition organic is:

1. Relating to or derived from living matter;

2. Food or farming methods produced or involving production without the use of chemical fertilizers, pesticides, or other artificial agents.

According to the USDA, organic farming preserve the environment and avoid most synthetic materials including pesticides, antibiotics and also not use GMO (genetically modified) crops.

So now you ask, why are the chemical fertilizers, pesticides, and other artificial agents that get sprayed on the food we eat such a big deal? I’m mean, can they really be that bad?? I’ll explain and let you decide.

Why are pesticides such a big deal?

Pesticides and herbicides KILL — that’s their job. They eliminate insects that eat plants and destroy crops. So, if something can kill a bug, do we really think it’s going to be healthy for us?

In 2004 there was a study done by the National Institute of Health that found an increased CNACER risk among 17,000 children living on farms where pesticides use had increased. Studies have linked exposure to organophosphate and organochlorines (chemical commonly found in pesticides) to several kinds of cancer, leukemia, lymphoma, Parkinson’s disease, ALS, fetal birth defects, ADHD, asthma, and other respiratory aliments.

Some of these deadly chemicals have since been outlawed, but that unfortunately doesn’t mean they’re gone. They still exist in our soils. In a sense our soils have been contaminated. An article published in the journal Neurotoxicity noted that even though some pesticides have been banned, it continues to exist in the environment, and has been found in Parkinson’s disease sufferers’ postmortem brain tissues.

Can I just wash my produce?

We can absolutely wash off some of the pesticides with water, vinegar or a 10 percent salt water rise will do the trick. But, that doesn’t take care of the threat entirely, there’s more to it. It’s the pesticides + harmful foods additives + environmental pollutants + everyday chemical irritants that we come into contact with now, in the past, and in the future. We are exposed to all this crap on a daily basis. At some point our immune systems just become overwhelmed and something may slip through our bodies defense system cracks, like a disease-causing bacteria, or virus, or a carcinogen will spread. The real danger is the accumulation— all the stuff that keeps adding up, meal by meal, day by day, year by year.

The Governments’ thoughts…

The government can assure us that exposure to a particular pesticide below a certain level has been proven harmless. BUT…how in the world does the government rule makers know what else were being exposed to? They don’t. And like I mentioned before, accumulation is the real danger. This is why in America, we have a million rules, and huge advancements in medical care, but yet we keep getting sick and dying from cancer and Parkinson’s disease. The government rules exist to tell companies what they can get away with, NOT to protect you as the consumer.

The benefits of buying organic:

Yes, buying organic is more expensive, but I view buying organic as an investment in my health and my family’s health. Many studies have been done on organically grown fruits and vegetables in comparison to conventionally grown fruits and vegetables. Aside from the benefits of consuming less pesticides, which in my opinion we should all assume are poison until proven otherwise because the truth is, no scientist has ever shown that pesticides are good for us…organic fruits and vegetables have been tested and they were found to have more non-traditional nutrients like polyphenol antioxidants. A specific study was done on organic berries that reviled the suppression of cancer growth was better than conventional berries!

My thoughts & recommendations:

  1. Buy organic whenever you can, but if it’s not available, NEVER let it stop me from consuming as many whole foods as possible! It should NOT be an “all or nothing” approach. #eatmoreplants
  2. Always wash your produce, especially the thin skinned ones like berries and grapes.
  3. Ask yourself: Would you rather give your money to the farmer or the pharmacist?
  4. Eating is THE single most important thing we can do to stay healthy. If good clean food isn’t worth the money, what is?
  5. Your body responds to what you put inside of it. Period. End of story.
  6. At least HALF your plate should be filled with vegetables. Include vegetables in everything!
  7. Beware of marketing on packages— just because something is labeled “organic” doesn’t mean it’s healthy (ie: organic oreos or plant-based cigarettes…yes, I literally saw this advertised at a gas station). Junk food is still junk food, even it if it was produced organically and cigarettes are still unhealthy no matter what.
This an example of how industries capitalize on marketing unhealthy products to you — they’ll put an “organic” or “plant-based” label on their products to make you think it’s a healthier option. But I mean, come on…cigarettes will NEVER be healthy, no matter how the tobacco is grown.

A few good books I recommend:

  1. Superlife by Darin Olien
  2. How Not to Die by Dr. Michael Greger, MD
  3. Fiber Fueled by Dr. Will Bulsiewicz, MD, MSCI

Nothing make me happier than seeing you live healthier– be sure to tag me over on social @brianne_bell_ so I can celebrate with you!

you.

I probably don’t have to tell you that there are an insane amount of diet & exercise programs out there that you could follow. But, the one question I want you to ask yourself is “what is my ultimate goal?”. Can we agree that living a healthy life and being able to show up as our best self is what matters most? If you’re looking for a quick fix or for a magic supplement that’s gonna make you healthy without having to put in some effort on your part-you’re in the wrong place. My goal is to help you create healthy lasting lifestyle habits using simple tools and following convenient programs that literally millions of other people have used and gotten results with. Simple plans for busy lives that get you results. 

My goal is to help you create healthy lasting lifestyle habits using simple tools and following convenient programs that literally millions of other people have used and gotten results with. Simple plans for busy lives that get you results. 

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