You’ve probably already seen the news story reporting researchers’ findings that organic food has little to no nutritional or health value over good old-fashioned give-me-all-the-pesticides-you-can-take food. Even still, armed with that knowledge, my eating habits won’t change much since about the only organic food I eat on a regular basis is the slightly more expensive cold cereal that I buy just ’cause it tastes better. When I’m home, I eat whatever my beautiful wife makes, and since she’s so super practical that it pains her almost to buy even the more expensive organic cold cereal I like, and she does most of the grocery shopping, we just don’t do too much organic at our house.
As for the scientific study, the research team reviewed 50 years of research comparing different nutrient levels in plant and animal foods produced by organic and non-organic farming. The researchers concluded:
A small number of differences in nutrient content were found to exist between organically and conventionally produced foodstuffs, but these are unlikely to be of any public health relevance….[T]here is currently no evidence to support the selection of organically over conventionally produced foods on the basis of nutritional superiority.
Though I don’t buy a lot of organic food, my brain still works well enough to know that this kind of report will certainly get organic food proponents fired up since surely there is more to the organic food market than just nutritional values. I guess I haven’t really looked into it much, but I’m just wondering if I’m missing out or making a big mistake by not making a more serious examination of the other benefits of an organic food diet in terms of taste, environmental effects, and other feel-good factors.
If anyone wishes to educate me or point others to additional resources on the subject of organic food benefits, feel free to leave a comment. Maybe you can persuade me, or maybe I’ll just feel smug knowing I didn’t give into the organic food craze when I didn’t have any money during law school.