When you believe you’re investing in your health, paying a bit extra for the label organic seems justified. Genetic modifications, artificial pesticides, and petroleum-based fertilizers are proven to harm the human body in the long term.
Students, who are exposed to this information through the media they read, are increasingly turning towards healthier food options. In 2020, the organic foods market in the USA generated approximately 49.5 million euros. In 2019, organic food generated around 5.8% of the overall food sales in the USA.
It’s a growing industry, and it’s getting more popular by the day. But is the extra price really worth it? What does science say about the effects of organic vs non-organic food? Let’s talk about this interesting topic before we can draw a conclusion about organic food and its hype.
What Is Organic Food?
What used to be found only in the organic food store is now widely available. In supermarkets, we usually see two sections in the produce aisle. One is for the usual fruits and veggies, and the other one is labeled organic. The produce is more expensive in the organic section. What makes that difference?
Organic vegetables, crops, and fruits must be grown without the use of any sewage sludge, specified pesticides, and synthetic fertilizers. If we’re talking about milk, eggs and meat, they are organic if they come from animals that have been grown with organic feed and without growth hormones and antibiotics.
The question is: people have been growing these cultures and producing meat, eggs and milk without artificial fertilizers for centuries. Why did they become so expensive all of a sudden nowadays?
One of the most important reasons why organic food is more expensive is the strict USDA certification standard. It controls the farms, production facilities, and transportation methods. To meet these standards, farmers are subjected to higher production costs. In addition, they can’t produce enough foods with these methods to meet the demand. The labor input is greater, too.
The Impact of Organic Food on Students
On the long run, people benefit from less exposure to antibiotic-resistant bacteria and pesticides that are found in conventional produce. But is health the only reason why a student would consume the more natural food? Stress is their greatest health concern.
They are exposed to stressful situation on a daily level, and they find different ways to cope with it. Many students use a word changer for essay, which can quickly and effectively help them complete a paper. Without such an online service, the stress levels become unbearable.
Meals can provide nutrition that makes them full of energy, but let’s face it: it cannot replace an online essay rewriter. What most students are worried about is environmental health. In addition to the “reduce, reuse and recycle” motto that they follow, they also gravitate towards more natural food choices, as a way to mitigate pollution.
Organic farms are also known to have higher standards for animal welfare. Plus, they generate fair income to local producers. These are the issues that today’s generation of students are aware of. They know how their daily choices affect not only their personal health, but the environment as well.
What Does Science Say about Organic Foods?
In 2012, Stanford University researchers published a study with controversial results. The tests showed that conventional foods provide nearly the same health benefits as organic foods. The rapidly growing human population cannot be fed solely by this kind of food, as this method of production results in lower yields.
However, we have to be aware of the fact that the reasons why people buy organic foods are not limited to health benefits. It’s mostly about the health of our environment, and that’s what many students are concerned about. Plus, if they buy local organic foods, they contribute towards the local economy.
They also buy fresher food that way. Ultimately, fresher food is beneficial to their health.
Bottom Line: Does Science Justify the Higher Price?’
In terms of nutrients, studies have shown that organic produce has a small to moderate advantage. If you’re mostly concerned about this aspect, then conventional food may be a better choice for you. But if you want lower quantities of toxic metal in your body, then grains will be a good choice.
When compared to conventional crops, they contain much lower cadmium levels. That cannot be said about fruits and veggies, though (the difference between organic and conventional options isn’t big). Cost is a major concern when buying the more natural foods. But if you buy fruits and veggies locally and in season, you may reduce it.
WRITER BIO: Mary Spears is always looking for healthier and environmentally-friendly ways to live. This lifestyle extends to her food, travel, and work choices. She shares her tips, dilemmas, and research through blog posts.