Are Organic Foods Pesticide-Free?
Organic foods are supposedly those that are grown naturally without artificial chemicals and harsh additives. Organic livestock are those raised without hormones and who are fed grain and other foodstuffs raised organically. An organic farmer will use natural methods to control pests, such as introducing certain insects into their farms that don’t harm their crop but which will feed on harmful insects.
They may also use natural weed killers and insect killers such as compounds made from bee pollen or a vinegar base or other natural elements.
Choosing organic foods can mean better health since pesticides are toxic and have been shown to affect people adversely. Some pesticides such as DDT are so harmful that they have been banned in many places around the world, and more studies need to be done about other pesticides and their effect as well. These pesticides can also strip foods of their nutrients so that you have fewer vitamins, trace minerals, and other important essential elements in your fruits and vegetables. Choosing organic can be one of the best health decisions you make.
However, are organic foods truly pesticide and chemical-free? The short answer is no, in most laboratory studies of organic foods there are always some trace elements of pesticides and chemicals present in organic foods and organic livestock.
There are two things to remember about this fact, before you start to assume that organic foods are a hoax or scam and not worth considering. One fact is that these trace elements are not necessarily because organic farmers are ‘cheating’ and actually using pesticides and chemicals when they say they are not. Chemicals from pesticides are present in groundwater and soil because they become airborne when used in any location, and because they seep into the soil very easily. A farmer cannot control what is already in the ground when he or she plants, and cattle will still be affected because they will eat plants that absorb these chemicals even when given feed that is organic.
Another consideration is that these trace elements in organic foods are much less harmful than those found in other types of foods. A trace amount of pesticide is better for you than the amount you would find in other foods, so of course a little bit of these chemicals will be less harmful than a large amount.
Organic fruits and vegetables and meats are much healthier for you than typical foods and healthier than processed foods, junk foods, sugary foods, and other options. Rather than assuming there’s no difference between organic foods and other choices and so it doesn’t matter what you eat, think of the overall content of the foods you eat and try to eat organic as much as possible.