four reasons to go organic

Bright-hued, tree-ripened, juicy! Fruits and vegetables naturally grown and ripened delight the senses. Veestro happily puts organic ingredients in all its plant-based recipes, yet understands the common (and legitimate) question:Do organic foods really make enough difference “health-wise” to justify their limited availability and higher cost at the market? Many studies say yes. But first, what is “organic”? Organic methods must meet USDA standards, including restricted use of pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, antibiotics in farm animals, and additives in our food.With these in mind, here are four good reasons to go organic.1. More nutritious A study led by Newcastle University professor Carlo Leifert on organic crops revealed 19% to 69% higher concentrations of antioxidants and 50% more anthocyanins (give fruits color) and flavonols (prevent cell damage and disease). The higher levels result from how plants handle stress from insect attacks: Organic crops can’t rely on pesticides to fend them off, so they produce more polyacetylenes—bitter-tasting and repelling to pests, but reducing inflammation and cancer risk in us.Stress also affects how crops get nitrogen: Conventionally grown crops get it from synthetic fertilizers, while organic crops rely on soil conditions and, in the process, produce more healthful metabolites. Reports also found 40% higher vitamin C, zinc, and iron in organic foods, while organic berries and corn contained 58% more polyphenols (antioxidants) than those conventionally grown.We want the purest, most natural foods possible too. Organic regulations restrict food additives (preservatives, artificial sweeteners, colorings, flavorings, and monosodium glutamate) and, of course, pesticides.2. Safer from pesticidesPesticide residues were found on conventional crops four times more often than organic, along with higher levels of cadmium, a toxic metal that can accumulate in the body, according to Leifert’s 2014 meta-analysis. While these residues may be safe for adults, a report by the National Academy of Sciences found the effects on fetuses and children, whose immune systems aren’t fully developed, can be more toxic.Plus, some plants are more bug-prone than others and require more pesticides. EatingWell lists the most fragile fruits and vegetables and the less-fragile, suggesting we opt for organic when selecting the former.3. More environment-friendlyEven organic’s naysayers admit organic farming addresses soil degradation and excess fertilizers and pesticides. The EWG continually warns about these toxic chemicals polluting the groundwater, rivers, and our tap water.What about energy? Most studies suggest that organic uses less. This is due primarily to conventional farming’s widespread transport and use of nitrogen-based fertilizers, representing 41% of the energy these farms consume.4. Bursting with flavor!Once you've tasted a vine-ripened tomato from the garden, you never forget its tanginess compared to store-bought. Benbrook explains that a plant grown organically without pesticides is tastier because higher antioxidant levels affect food’s organoleptic qualities—taste, aroma, and mouthfeel. He adds:"The chemicals that a plant produces to respond to stress become part of that plant’s signature taste. People are yearning for more intense flavors and ... organic farming accentuates flavor in fruits and vegetables."That’s just one more reason we love to deliver Veestro organic meals to your door!  Sources:Allison Aubrey, Is Organic More Nutritious? NPRClear Differences Between Organic and Non-Organic Food, Study Finds, The GuardianMarissa Lippert, M.S., R.D., Organic—or Not? Is Organic Produce Healthier than Conventional? EatingWellJessica DeCostole, The Truth about Organic Foods, RedbookMary Beth Albright, Organic Foods Are Tastier and Healthier, Study Finds, National Geographic 

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