It was a sunny day in Manhattan Beach, California. I was by the ocean, walking my son Anthony when he was about one year old. I was with my friends Vicky, whose daughter was also 1 year old, and Kate, the veteran of the group – her daughter was already two years old.
Kate was an early adopter of organic food. This was when “eating organic” meant spending twice as much at the grocery store.
Kate’s little girl was riding along in her stroller when all of a sudden her little cup of extremely expensive grapes spilled all over the sandy sidewalk.
Vicky and I were really mean – we laughed! We couldn’t believe what a waste of money it was for Kate to have invested in these grapes for her child.
Fast forward to now, when we are lucky that more people have backed Kate’s desire to eat organically than were naysayers like myself and Vicky back in 1998.
What is “Organic”?
The widespread application of synthetic chemicals to our food supply has only come about in the last 100 years or so. Up until that time (i.e. most of human history), the agricultural practice was mostly organic.
“Organic” now means more than just NOT using synthetic chemicals or pesticides. It is an approach to horticulture and agriculture that emphasizes the cycle in nature whereby plants incorporate nutrients from the ground and cultivation practices return nourishment to the ground.
Another aspect of organic growing pays attention to the biome that exists in healthy soil, including beneficial microbes in natural fertilizers, such as fungi and nitrogen-fixing bacteria.
Plants’ natural self-protecting abilities
Think about this: plants and crops have natural abilities to resist damage from sunlight and pests. Just as antibiotics can lower our own natural immunities, synthetic pesticides can lower the plant’s own defenses and in turn lower the content of beneficial anti-oxidants in the fruit they bear.
Organic growing practices, on the other hand, can actually increase the flavonoid (anti-oxidant) content of the fruit by up to 50%. For example, a UC Davis study in 2009 showed that organically grown tomatoes and peppers had higher levels of flavonoids and Vitamin C than conventionally grown tomatoes. (Source: Comparative Guide to Nutritional Supplements by Lyle MacWilliam, MSc)
So what is my interest in bringing up this topic at this time?
My practice focuses on hormone balance and weight loss. In particular, I help people overcome resistance to weight loss.
Many people tell me they are eating the same quantities and doing the same amount of physical activity, and still gain weight. This may be due to endocrine disruptors – environmental toxins that either imitate or block the activity of our own hormones.
In addition to (natural) hormone therapy, a key ingredient in good hormonal balance is avoiding toxins (which nowadays is easier said than done). Consuming organically grown or raised food is one great way to avoid toxins.
Our bodies are designed to detoxify, but when you consider the growing number of endocrine disruptors – including chemicals, heavy metals, pollution, food additives, drugs, alcohol, smoking – it is getting more and more difficult for our bodies to do this detoxification process.
Next week I will show you the 3 main ways our bodies detoxify. You’ll see exactly how our bodies benefit from drinking enough water, taking in enough anti-oxidants, and eating organic.