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Organic Food: Worth The Cost, Or Just A Gimmick?
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Is organic food really any better for you than the other, sometimes cheaper items at your local grocer? Do you really need to spend a few cents more? Is it safer, tastier and better for the planet? The answers? Yes, yes and yes. Yes to all of the above and more.

Organic foods are not only worth the extra costs but should be the first thing that you reach for when feeding yourself and your family. Organics are better for you in the long run, as well as for the planet. But how?

Organic foods reduce the amount of pesticides and other dangerous chemicals that your family ingests everyday. Unfortunately, harmful chemicals are in every aspect of our daily lives. We breathe them in from the air that surrounds us, we drink them in our water. We should all do our part to reduce the amount of these chemicals that we willingly and knowingly ingest through the foods that we eat.

If cost is a concern, as it is for most American families, then your first stop for organic produce, dairy, eggs and other products should be to the local farmer’s market or co-op. The prices here may be substantially lower than at the grocery store or big box retailer with the advantage of being able to speak to the direct owner or grower about the items that you are purchasing.

A secondary advantage may be that you may be able to haggle on the prices with a grower/owner something you could never do at the retailer! A larger farmer’s market may have the majority of the items on your grocery list, even meats. (Make sure that all items are properly transported, stored and handled for your own safety.)

Many areas have such a call for organic items that their farmer’s markets are open year round, while in others the offerings are limited by the seasons. If a farmer’s market is not near enough to be logical, then consider going to a health food store for these items. Some of the savings that you would have seen at the farmer’s markets will not be there, but the produce will be of high quality. Check the prices at these health food stores to compare against the retailers or the local grocery stores before committing to major purchases.

When choosing organic foods, keep several things in mind:

1. They will not be as perfect or as pretty as non-organic items.

2. The taste of organic produce may be more intense than similar items.

3. Organic produce may be worth the extra cost in general health benefits.

When choosing organic produce, remember it is better for some items to be organic than others. Any item with an edible peel should be organic whenever possible. Apples are a very good example of these- many people rinse off an apple and eat them, peel and all.

Unfortunately, they are not only eating the juicy goodness of an apple, they are eating chemicals and in many cases a wax coating. Peeling the apple removes the wax coating but it does not remove all of the accumulated chemicals and byproducts and it also removes some of the important nutrients. Buying organics allows you to eat your apples, peel and all. After all, the most unhealthy thing that should be on an apple is caramel.


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