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Are Organic Foods Really Healthier?

This is a tricky question and not one with an easy answer. It's quite obvious that food lacking in chemical contamination will be better for you than food with such toxic residues, but there is more to it than just that.

The first question would be how much chemical contamination is really on our food in the first place? There is no solid answer with figures for that because it can vary so widely from one food product to another and even from one growing region to another. Suffice it to say, that almost every single non-organic food product will have some kind of chemical either remaining on it from farming, or added to it in processing.

The kinds of things you can find on many non-organic foods include: heavy metals, benzene, phosphates, dioxins, growth hormones and animal antibiotics. And that doesn't include the huge list of chemicals that are deliberately added as preservatives, dyes and artificial flavorings.

So yes, organic foods are lacking in all of these potentially harmful things which makes them healthier than non-organic foods even if various government agencies consider these chemicals to be within safe limits.

But the other side of the organic equation isn't about what's lacking, but what is present. There is a common misconception with organic food that it is healthier by way of more nutrients, vitamins or antioxidants than non-organic foods. Studies have been undertaken on this though it remains a mainly unanswered question. Generally, foods do not seem to increase in "healthfulness" in this way just due to organic farming. Some studies have indicated that some organic foods do have higher levels of some nutrients but this is still being debated and it’s not a fact that has proven true across all foods. More investigation and studies are going on regularly, so further information may be presented in the near future.

Many news stories will tout this as a way of discrediting the organic movement as a meaningless fad, that the food is no healthier.  In reality, that is only half the story and really, it's the lesser half.

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