Is organic food healthier? New study says no

OrganicFood

As a registered dietitian, one of the most popular questions I get asked is, “Is organic food better for me?” My usual response is that the way to better health is to eat more fruits, vegetables and whole grains, organic or not.

No significant difference in nutrition

A new review of the published literature sheds some light on this very question. The authors found that for produce — fruits, vegetables and grains — there was no significant difference in vitamin levels of organic items compared to conventionally grown items. However, researchers also found detectable pesticide residues were significantly less likely to be found on organic produce.

What do these results mean for the average consumer? The question of whether organic food is better for you is usually coupled with cost concerns, because, in general, organic produce can be more expensive. However, the most recent data indicates that in terms of nutrient content, organic and conventionally grown produce are equivalent.

What about pesticides?

There are, however, other reasons that consumers choose to purchase organic produce, and the fact that they tend to have lower quantities of detectable pesticide residues compared to conventionally grown produce is one of them. This finding, however, may not be as significant as it initially appears to be. First of all, it means that organic produce still contains pesticide residues, just less often than conventional produce. Secondly, the levels of residue found on organic and conventional produce generally are well below upper limits set by the government. In other words, exposure at these levels is less than what has been shown to cause adverse health effects.

For anyone who still has concerns about pesticide residue levels on produce, I would advise thoroughly rinsing all produce before consumption.

Bottom line

In light of these results, it is my opinion that if you’re trying to adopt healthier eating habits, consuming more fruits, vegetables and whole grains, organic or not, is definitely a step in the right direction.

This article originally appeared on www.HealthBytesNYC.com. Simone Walters is a clinical nutritionist at Beth Israel Medical Center.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Memorial held for Sean Collier, MIT police officer…

More than 1,600 people gathered at MIT on Friday for a memorial service for Sean Collier, the police officer shot to death a year ago in the aftermath of the…

National

Florida man charged with murdering son to play…

A Florida man annoyed that his 16-month-old crying son was preventing him from playing video games suffocated the toddler, police said on Friday.

International

Powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake rattles Mexico

A powerful earthquake struck Mexico Friday, shaking buildings and sending people running into the street, although there were no reports of major damage.

News

OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…

Entertainment

Whoopi Goldberg makes her debut as marijuana columnist

"It helps my head stop hurting, and with glaucoma your eyes ache, and she takes the ache out. It's wonderful," she said.

The Word

Kate Middleton made fun of Prince William's bald…

Kate Middleton and Prince William are in Sydney, Australia, right now, and it sounds like that brash Aussie sense of humor might be rubbing off.

The Word

Is Tom Cruise dating Laura Prepon?

"Mission: Impossible" star Cruise is said to be dating Laura Prepon, star of "Orange is the New Black."

Television

'Scandal' recap: Season 3, Episode 18, 'The Price…

Sally is Jesus, Olivia caused global warming, and Mellie's still drunk. Let's recap the Scandal finale. A church full of Washington insiders is about to…

MLB

MLB video highlights: Red Sox score two in…

Lester shines in Red Sox win over White Sox

Sports

2014 Boston Marathon preview: Elite American, International runners…

2014 Boston Marathon: Elite American, International runners to watch

NBA

2014 NBA Finals odds: Ranking which playoff teams…

2014 NBA Finals odds: Ranking which playoff teams have the best shot at a championship. The Thunder, Clippers, Heat and Rockets lead the way.

NFL

2014 Patriots, full NFL schedule release date announced

2014 Patriots, full NFL schedule release date announced

Tech

VIDEO: 'Vein-scanning' may become the future of paying

Designed to make transactions quicker and easier, the technology works by scanning the unique vein patterns in each person's palm.

Tech

#FollowFriday: 10 of the smartest Twitter accounts

Spending lots of time on Twitter? You might as well learn something. Here are some of the smartest accounts to follow.

Style

Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.

Wellbeing

Why is dance cardio taking off in NYC?

Instructors at some of the city's hottest classes explain why.