As I walk through the “organic section” of the grocery store, it seems the organic items are a good deal more expensive than those not in this isle. That makes sense, given these items are more labor intense, due to growth by farmers on a much smaller scale than their counterparts. And organic farmers are less likely to be given government aid and must deal with costs on their own.
I’ve been reading about the virtues dandelions. For most people it’s a dreaded weed to get rid of through pesticides or whatever measures needed. But research is showing bone health, liver issues, diabetes, skin care and even weight loss are a few of the benefits of eating the dandelion leaves, flower or root.1 For me, going into my yard to harvest this “weed/plant,” is organic! I did have some fears about it and when talking with a friend about my uneasiness, he asked, “Do you grow a garden?” “Well, sure!!” He followed with..... “Well you eat what grows in it, right?” That made sense, so….guess who picked dandelion leaves and added them to salad?
When my husband was in Viet Nam, he dealt with the chemical known as “agent orange.” There are still studies being done for the long term negative effects of being in this substance. It has been determined “agent orange” causes a huge list of issues from cancer to heart disease!2 It’s no different for the pesticides put on our crops throughout the country now in the name of bigger crops for less effort and more money. What began as a way to minimize pests and diseases on crops, has created diseases in humans who eat the crops. It’s also ingested by the animals whose meat we eat! It seems to be a no win situation.
As I worked on the research for this particular post, I moved from "gardening" to the animal side of the equation. I found myself literally frowning as I noted the antibiotics, hormones, by products, steroids, pesticides, sewage sludge, and even arsenic-based drugs included in our meats.3 I knew this information, but somehow seeing it in print just really drove home the idea of how important eating organic really might be!
The challenge we face is to find some balance in the food we eat. I’m not suggesting everyone should begin eating organic. But there is merit in rethinking how we view food and those people who do eat organic. It isn’t necessarily a way to live out of the “norm” or a way to be considered smarter (or more financially able) than those who choose to not eat organic.
I didn't get all my questions answered, but it is likely, those who choose to eat organic are eating healthier than those who do not, as long as what they are eating is really organic; and not polluted with all the toxic material that seems to abound, through sprays on our crops and given to the animals we use to maintain our diet.
I'd love to hear your thoughts on the subject! By all means share your insights on this topic!