I’m not really what some would call a “crunchy” mom. I use disposable diapers, I have no idea how to make my own cleaning products, I’m not familiar with any homeopathic remedies, and, despite my best efforts, both of my children drank formula for a few months.
I do, however, share one major thing in common with these all natural mamas — I want my children to eat healthy, fresh, hormone and pesticide-free food. For our family, this means buying organic whenever possible. When I first began hearing about organic versus conventionally grown food I was in college. I was living on an extremely tight budget and purchasing the organic milk and produce felt like a bit of a stretch.
Was it really healthier or was this just another marketing gimmick? I wasn’t convinced. In fact, I didn’t get serious about buying organic food until my son began eating solids. I wanted him to have the purest foods available and so I took to the internet to do a little research.
The first thing I learned immediately decreased my skepticism about organics. Did you know that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has guidelines in place that farmers must adhere to in order to give their food an organic label? I didn’t.
Some of the things I read shocked me. For instance, there are currently over 400 pesticides approved for use in conventional farming. One fact in particular determined by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) stuck in my head. You can reduce your pesticide intake by 80% just by choosing the organic version of 12 common fruits and vegetables.
This list of produce has been deemed “the dirty dozen” by the EWG and includes peaches, apples, sweet bell peppers, celery, nectarines, strawberries, cherries, kale, lettuce, imported grapes, carrots, and pears. Many of these foods my baby was eating regularly and I couldn’t switch him fast enough.
I have been a mother now for over five years and I continue to incorporate organic ingredients into the meals we eat. Nothing is more important to me than my children’s health and well-being and providing them with quality food is one way I feel I can have a positive impact.
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