What is the factual difference between food that is organic, and food that isn’t? If you purchase them because they are ‘healthier’ so you will be ‘healthier’ then read on. There are some fundamental differences, but health may not be one of them.
This myth may come from food companies and marketing, but there is no evidence that organic foods contain more nutrients and there is a lack of evidence to show that non-organic foods have a negative effect.
Studies that examined clinical outcomes of eczema, wheeze, atopic sensitization or symptomatic Campylobacter infection found no significant difference between those that had organic or non – organic foods.
“studies of biomarker and nutrient levels in serum, urine, breast milk, and semen in adults did not identify clinically meaningful differences” Smith-Spangler et al. (2012)
But, organic foods were found to have 30% lower pesticide residues than conventional foods. Levels in both organic and non – organic foods were still within the allowable safety limits. Dangour et al. (2010).
Also, In terms of meat, organic chicken and pork were also about a third less likely to contain antibiotic-resistant bacteria than conventionally raised chicken and pork. However, the bacteria that cause food poisoning were equally present in both types of foods. Dangour et al. (2010).
If you want to know which non organic foods are on the higher side of containing pesticides (so you can select the organic version if preferred), they are: celery, peaches, strawberries, apples, blueberries, nectarines, bell peppers, spinach, cherries, kale/collard greens, potatoes, grapes (imported).
The non-organic foods that were found to have the lowest levels of pesticides are: onions, avocado, sweet corn, pineapple, mango, sweat peas, asparagus, kiwi, cabbage, aubergine, cantaloupe, watermelon, grapefruit, sweet potato, honeydew melon.
Ultimately, selecting organic vs non – organic is a personal choice. Whilst you may prefer to purchase organic to avoid higher pesticides, currently there is no evidence to show this is harmful.