Today, we’re talking about one of the most frequently asked questions of the past decade: Is eating organic healthier?
We’ll break things down for you, highlighting industry terms and the health benefits of organic food. You’ll learn about types of labeling and the switch to an organic food lifestyle.
For some, it’s overwhelming. You ask, “Why eat organic?” And a wave of opinions come your way. But here on the blog, we make the lesson as simple and straightforward as our Beetnik ingredients. Read on to discover the positives of organic food.
How to Know If Food Is Organic
Before you can understand the importance of eating organic, you’ve got to know how to identify the foods. The organic journey doesn’t work if you can’t locate the proper source. Let’s dive into the levels of organic food labeling. Trust us: once you learn what to look for, it’s easy.
4 Levels of Organic Labeling
There are four levels in the organic food world. Here are the labels you’ll see, along with what they actually mean. The first two are heavily monitored by the USDA and other is monitored by third-party companies.
1. 100% Organic
You’ll see the USDA seal. There’s absolutely no chance of cross-contamination with non-organic ingredients.
2. Certified Organic
You’ll see the USDA seal. And this one is most common. These products can contain 5 percent non-organic. Note that some minor ingredients may not have organic options. And sometimes, cross-contamination simply can’t be ruled out.
3. Made with Organic
You won’t see a specific seal on these products. They must contain 70 percent certified organic ingredients.
4. Specify Organic Ingredients
No seal here either. And these products contain less than 70 percent certified organic ingredients.
Do Organic Foods Contain Genetically Modified Ingredients?
Does organic mean non-GMO? The short answer is no. But it’s important to understand the inverse. Non-GMO labeling does not mean organic. Looking for the green USDA organic seal is your best bet for steering clear of GMO and contaminated ingredients.
It’s also important to understand the USDA loopholes.
Does Organic Mean Hormone-Free?
A resounding YES! Once again, though, comprehend the inverse. Hormone-free does not mean you receive the organic benefits. Hormone-free means that no hormones or steroids were given to make the livestock grow more rapidly. There are different requirements for the organic seals. But hormone-free is certainly a piece of those requirements.
We explain grass-fed vs. organic vs. hormone-free on the blog. Being educated helps you shop and feed yourself and your family with confidence.
Try Beetnik’s organic frozen meals today. You’ll see the organic seal. And you’ll feel great about fueling your body with the best.
Is Organic Food Healthier?
Are there reasons why organic food is better? What’s the payoff? Is it a difference I’ll notice and feel overnight? Really, though: How important is it to eat organic?
We get these questions all the time. So, we decided to give it to you straight here on the blog.
Is Organic Food More Nutritious?
The Mayo Clinic tells us that there are potential nutritional benefits when it comes to eating organic. We’re not trying to sugar-coat anything here. The research has not yielded conclusive evidence yet. These things take time.
In the meantime, though – as we wait for results to unfold – what are we feeding our bodies? Consumers often ask us, “Why eat organic?” We often say, “Why not eat organic as much as possible?”
Why not limit your pesticide, chemical, hormone, steroid, etc. intake? Is it logical to believe that these cheap tricks and shortcuts actually help you? They’re in place because mass production and high demand exist.
Mayo Clinic does reveal a few advantages of organic food. They discuss small to moderate nutritional increases in organic produce specifically. As for organic meats, eggs, and dairy, they typically contain higher Omega-3 fatty acids because of what livestock eats (e.g. grass and alfalfa). It makes sense that we eat what the animals eat, right?
The Mayo Clinic goes on to say that cadmium (a natural, but toxic chemical) is lower in organic grains. This doesn’t apply to fruits and vegetables, though.
Is Organic Food Safer?
Because cancer is so prevalent, it’s a common inquiry: “Will eating organic reduce my risk?” Maybe. That’s a claim we can’t honestly make, though. Erma Levy is a clinical dietitian at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. She says, “…The evidence that exists to support or refute eating organic foods to prevent cancer is unclear.”
She doesn’t say it’s nonsense. She says it’s unclear at this time.
Levy does acknowledge that eating organic can be safer, though. At least you’re reducing the ingestion of commercial chemicals and pesticides. The USDA heavily controls the companies that carry their seal of organic approval.
The jury is still out on organic food and nutrition. But the results are coming. At Beetnik, we choose to believe organic is more nutritious and safer. Harmful synthetic fertilizers and steroid-injected livestock? They’re red flags. Experiments and studies could take years due to overall procedures and funding. We choose to be proactive.
WebMD points to Dr. David Klurfeld, chairman of Wayne State University’s Department of Nutrition and Food Science. He admits that as of now, “we don’t know enough to say that one is better than the other.” He notes that there’s limited information about the health benefits of organic food.
Once again, he doesn’t say it’s all nonsense. The information is just limited right now.
In this case, “playing it safe” is probably best. Understanding labels makes the switch to organic easier. Knowing the benefits of eating organic food does, too. Here are a couple of quick tips for switching to organic and keeping yourself safer:
- Always scrub your fruits and veggies. Do this rather than peeling them. When you peel, you eliminate more than bacteria and chemicals. You actually take away fiber and nutrients.
- Watch for the updated list of the “Dirty Dozen” foods. Eat a rainbow of foods, but you may want these 12 foods to be organic, given their susceptibility to chemical absorption and residue.
Beetnik Has Organic Meals You’re Sure to Love
Though science is still at work, we already value what’s organic. That’s obvious. We’ve built our Beetnik menu around the idea. We strongly believe that the yet-to-be-proven health benefits of eating organic truly exist.
We hope you’ll find Beetnik meals in a store near you today. We make organic food and health benefits easy and enjoyable. We’re a family ourselves, and we feed our bodies the purest, cleanest ingredients available. Organic labeling is certainly an expense. But we like giving you peace of mind. You know you’re getting the best quality and all the benefits of eating organic with us.
Our lineup of frozen meals is impressive (and so delicious).