I’ve been asked quite a few times why I buy organic. Most of the people asking me are honestly curious about the benefits, but others are trying to start a debate. Usually they ask if the taste of organic produce is really any better, why would I spend so much extra money and if there is any difference nutritionally. I try to keep my answers short and to the point. I try not to come off sounding too “better than you” or judgmental. It doesn’t always work and I know that some walk away believing that I am a conceited food snob. That’s fine, I’m not choosing organic for them. I’m choosing it for my family.
To address the first question, do I think organic produce tastes better? My answer is, sometimes. If it’s locally grown and in season, the answer is yes. If it’s imported from across the country or the world, there’s probably not much difference. Just picked tastes better in my opinion. That’s all it is though, my opinion.
Why would I spend sooo much money to buy organic produce, meat, milk, juice… yada yada yada? Well, the answer to that is, our health insurance sucks. This is our supplemental healthy insurance. With all of the studies that have been presented linking pesticides to several forms of cancers, respiratory issues, allergies and so on, I’m doing all I can to keep us healthy and out of the doctor’s office. More here, here and here.
Is organic produce better, nutritionally speaking? To my knowledge, yes. There are more nutrients in the soil and the plants grown in the soil. The less pesticides, the more vitamins and minerals. More here.
Finally, to the debaters, I try to gently make it clear that this “Organic thing” is not a phase I’m going through. It’s not a fad for me. It’s the way I’ve been feeding myself since I was about 24 years old. I’m now about to turn 38. If I’ve inspired some people along the way to start eating organic, that’s awesome. If I’ve annoyed a bunch of people with my answers, eh… I guess that’s their issue. I like who I am and I love that my family is healthy the majority of the time.
Even now, writing this, I wonder if I’m being too “better than you”. Should I even bother publishing this? Do people really want to know why organic is important to me? I guess, based on how many times I’ve been asked, somebody out there might want to know.