Although it is better to eat the organic variety of all foods, you cannot always afford to do this. You can also choose to eat partially organic, focusing mainly on fruit and vegetables, where many pesticides are used for the non-organic variant.
What is organic food?
Organic food is produced by organic farming, which does not use synthetic inputs such as synthetic pesticides, synthetic herbicides and chemical fertilization. Organic foods are processed without irradiation, industrial solvents or artificial additives.
The effect of pesticides on the environment
Chemical pesticides often have a greater impact on our environment than their users intended. For example, 98% of sprayed pesticides reach organisms other than just their target organism, affecting the quality of air, water, soil and food. Excessive and improper use can also increase the resistance of the target organism and kill the natural enemies of that organism.
Often the pesticide spreads to surrounding soil and is absorbed into the water, soil and air, from which it is difficult to remove. Some of the substances used to combat organisms contribute to global warming and the thinning of the ozone layer.
The effect of pesticides on our health
Many studies have found a link between contact with pesticides and various types of cancer, such as leukemia, lung cancer and prostate cancer. There is also strong indication that exposure to chemical pesticides increases the risk of neurological disorders. For example, it appears that the risk of Parkinson’s disease is 70% greater in people who have been in contact with low concentrations of pesticides. Finally, many studies also point to an increased risk of birth defects, miscarriages, fertility problems in men, depression and diabetes.
Now that it is clear that pesticides can have a bad effect on health, you can decide to eat completely organic. However, the prices of those foods are many times higher than non-organic food. You can also choose to focus on the worst culprits. Below you will find a list of fruits and vegetables that it is better to buy organic, and a list where you can safely choose the non-organic variant.
Fruit and vegetables that are best bought organically
- green beans
- cherry tomatoes
Fruit and vegetables that you can also buy non-organic
- sweet potatoes
How can you clean non-organic fruits and vegetables?
Although water removes a lot of pesticides and dirt, it is better to give them extra cleaning. This can be done in the following simple and safe way:
- Mix the juice of an organic lemon with two tablespoons of vinegar and a glass of water in a plant sprayer.
- Spray this on the piece of fruit or vegetable and rinse with water.
By making a conscious choice about what you buy organic and what not, you keep your physical and financial health in balance!
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