Food Standards Australia New Zealand carefully monitor the level of chemicals (pesticides and fertilisers) in Australia so that food produced here are safe for consumption. It is a common misconception that organic foods are better for you than non-organic foods however the evidence just doesn't show this. Both organic and conventionally grown food contain all the nutrients needed for optimal health and are both grown as nature intended. Even organically produced food products do contain small amounts of natural pesticides and herbicides to keep the bugs and weeds away. Just because something is ‘natural’ doesn't always mean that it is better for you.
There are many reasons why people choose to go organic:
- Flavour and taste
- Personal preference
- Free from genetic modification (not routinely done in Australia)
- Reduced chemicals (e.g. pesticides) in diet
- Environmental benefits
Then there is the cost, in my experience with clients many simply cannot afford to go organic. So I advise my clients/patients to simply wash their conventionally grown fruits and vegetables prior to food preparation and consumption which removes the chemicals.
But hey, if it is one strategy that helps people to eat better and consume a wholesome diet I am all for it. But for expert advice, look no further than an Accredited Practising Dietitian (APD). You can find an APD at www.daa.asn.au
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