Wednesday, October 24th, 2012
In a study that echoes other research that shows organic food to carry no more significant nutrition than conventionally-grown foods, a new report says that organic food is not conclusively more healthy for growing children than conventional foods. MSNBC.com reports:
The nation’s pediatricians have weighed in on the issue for the first time, and they say that when it comes to nutritional value, organics are virtually indistinguishable from conventionally produced foods.
“Pretty much every study shows no nutritional difference,” said Dr. Janet Silverstein, a professor of pediatric endocrinology at the University of Florida. She’s a co-author of the report published Monday by the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Silverstein and her colleagues reviewed the available studies on organic and conventionally produced foods, including produce, dairy products and meat. They considered research about issues including nutrition, hormones, antibiotics and synthetic chemical exposure, plus factors such as environmental impact and price.
Overall, the docs came to a conclusion that may surprise some parents who believe organic is best for their kids
“In the long term, there is currently no direct evidence that consuming an organic diet leads to improved health or lower risk of disease,” AAP officials said in a statement.
Image: Baby food, via Shutterstock
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Monday, June 13th, 2011
The Environmental Working Group (EWG) today released its annual “Dirty Dozen” list of the twelve fruits and vegetables that researchers find contain the highest levels of pesticide residues and are most important to buy from organic growers. The dozen items, ranked from highest to lowest pesticide load (but all highly susceptible) are:
- Nectarines (imported)
- Grapes (imported)
- Sweet Bell Peppers
- Blueberries (domestic)
- Kale/Collard Greens
The list shifts slightly each year, with cherries being taken off the 2011 list (and lettuce being added after an brief absence). In a statement for the EWG’s press release announcing the list, a leading pediatrician emphasized the importance of monitoring the quality of food parents serve their children.
“I really worry that pesticides on food are unhealthy for the tender, developing brains and bodies of young children,” said Dr. Harvey Karp, MD, FAAP, creator of the book/DVD The Happiest Baby on the Block. “Parents don’t realize they’re often feeding their little ones fruits and veggies with the highest pesticide residues. Studies show even small amounts of these chemicals add up and can impair a child’s health when they’re exposed during the early, critical stages of their development. When pesticide sprayers have to bundle up in astronaut-like suits for protection, it’s clear parents want to feed their families food containing as little of these toxic chemicals as possible.”
The EWG also published its companion list, the “Clean 15,” which catalogs fruits and vegetables that are least likely to hold onto pesticide residues if grown by non-organic methods. Those foods are:
- Sweet Corn
- Sweet Peas
- Cantaloupe (domestic)
- Sweet Potatoes
Do you choose organic produce when you can, and if so do you use the Dirty Dozen as your guide?
(image via: http://travel.latimes.com/)
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