Why Organic?

I’m often asked if organic produce is more nutritious than conventionally grown food. Studies have shown that it is. According to results from a $25-million study into organic food–the largest of its kind to date, organic completely outshines conventional produce. A four-year, European-Union-funded study found that organic fruit and vegetables contain up to 40 percent more antioxidants. They have higher levels of beneficial minerals like iron and zinc. Milk from organic herds contained up to 90 percent more antioxidants. The researchers obtained their results after growing fruit and vegetables, and raising cattle, on adjacent organic and non-organic sites. They say that eating organic foods can even help to increase the nutrient intake of people who don’t eat the recommended five servings of fruits and vegetables a day.

The best way to get the healthiest juice possible is to use organic produce whenever possible to avoid the billion pounds of pesticides and herbicides sprayed onto or added to our crops yearly.

It is estimated that only about 2 percent of this amount actually fights insects and weeds, while the rest is absorbed into our air, soil, and water.

These pesticide residues pose long-term health risks, such as cancer and birth defects, and immediate health risks from acute intoxication, such as vomiting, diarrhea, blurred vision, tremors, convulsions, and nerve damage.

A 2001 study conducted as part of a doctoral dissertation at Johns Hopkins University looked at 41 studies involving field trials, greenhouse pot experiments, market basket surveys, and surveys of farmers. The most studied nutrients across those surveys included calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, zinc, beta- carotene, and vitamin C. According to the study, there was significantly more

• vitamin C (27 percent)

iron (21 percent)

magnesium (29 percent)

phosphorus (13 percent)

in the organic produce than in the conventionally grown vegetables. There were also 15 percent fewer toxic nitrates in the organic vegetables. The vegetables that had the biggest increases in nutrients between organic and conventional production were lettuce, spinach, carrots, potatoes and cabbage. Couple that with fewer chemical residues, and you can see that buying organically grown food is well worth the effort and the additional cost.

When choosing organically grown foods, look for labels marked “certified” organic.

This means the produce has been cultivated according to strict uniform standards that are verified by independent state or private organizations. Certification includes: inspection of farms and processing facilities, detailed record keeping, and pesticide testing of soil and water to ensure that growers and handlers are meeting government standards.

You may occasionally see a label that says “transitional organic.” This means the food was grown on a farm that recently converted, or is in the process of converting, from chemical to organic farming.

When that’s the case, choose wisely. According to the Environmental Working Group, commercially farmed fruits and vegetables vary in their levels of pesticide residue. Some vegetables, like broccoli, asparagus and onions, as well as foods with peels, such as avocados, bananas and oranges, have relatively low levels of pesticides compared to other fruits and vegetables.

However, some vegetables and fruit contain large amounts of pesticide.

This symbol looks green and healthy but BEWARE! These are foods that have been irradiated. Some food producers use gamma-ray radiation to kill pests and germs in stored food, and to increase the food’s shelf life.

Although the Food and Drug Administration has approved the practice, eating irradiated food is not a wise choice. The average dose of radiation used to decontaminate most foods can be up to 5 million times that of a typical chest X ray.

This practice destroys vitamins, phytochemicals, biophotons, and enzymes. It also generates harmful byproducts such as free radicals, which are toxins that can damage cells, and harmful chemicals known as radiolytic products, including formaldehyde and benzene.

Whenever possible, avoid genetically modified foods, also known as GMs or GMOs. Scientists, doctors, and health educators in many sectors of the health industry have long warned about the possible deleterious effects of GM crops on the health of animals and humans.

An Australian project to develop genetically modified peas with built-in pest-resistance had to be abandoned after tests showed they caused allergic lung damage in mice. A similar situation occurred in the early 1990’s when a strain of bio-engineered soybeans was found to cause an allergic response in people with Brazil nut allergies.

A March 2007 article in the journal Archives of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology reported on a study that was commissioned by the environmental group Greenpeace in which rats were fed for 90 days on GM maize (corn) developed by the chemical giant Monsanto. The rats showed signs of toxicity in the liver and kidneys.

In reporting on this study, Scientific American quoted a statement by Greenpeace spokesman, Arnaud Apoteker saying, “It is the first time that independent research, published in a peer-reviewed journal, has proved that a GMO authorized for human consumption presents signs of toxicity.

Check the PLU (price look up) code on the produce stickers at your grocer. Genetically modified food sticker 5-digit codes will start with an 8. For example, a genetically engineered vine ripe tomato would be 84805.

Look for #9 as the first number in the PLU (price look up) code on the sticker at your grocer. What gets a label: All produce, including fruits, vegetables, dried fruit, herbs and nuts.

• Conventionally-grown fruit: These four-digit numbers run the gamut from guava to kiwi. For example, guava is 4299 and a banana is 4011. You can also search PLU codes online.

• Organically-grown fruit: This produce has five digit labels that start with the number 9. An organically-grown banana would be 94011.

• Genetically modified food: These five digit labels start with an 8, so, for example, a genetically engineered vine ripe tomato would be 84805.

Reference: (www.businessinsider.com/heres-what-the-sticker-on-your-produce-really-means-2012-8#ixzz247jrXsM6; access August 21, 2012)

Beyond Organics - JOIN US!

I’ve teamed up with Jordan Rubin, author of The Maker’s Diet, and founder of the supplement company—Garden of Life. Jordan has a new line of organic food products that will launch officially in October, but you can become an “Insider” early. His organic food products will be delivered directly to your door under the label “Beyond Organics.”

They include:

Grassfed (and finished) Beef that is organic, kosher, slaughtered in the ancient, more compassionate way, and not slaughtered until CLA levels are high. (Grain fed cattle has virtually no CLA.)

Raw Organic Cheese. Beyond Organics cheese is actually raw, as opposed to the not-exactly “raw” cheese you find at health stores that are pasteurized to just a degree below legal pasteurization—meaning they’re not really raw. Beyond Organic cheese is truly raw, and probiotic infused. They also contain nothing artificial (including coloring). Every two ounces of cheese is the equivalent of taking a probiotic supplement.All the dairy products are from a type of dairy cow that doesn’t produce a cassein protein that is produced by most dairy cows, which we don’t tolerate well. The cheese is also considered “farmstead” meaning they are made on the same farm on which the diary was collected. And, they are artisanal, meaning they’re made in small batches to ensure taste and quality.

Probiotic infused water. Reign Supreme Mountain Spring Water originates from Jordan’s pristine clear blue spring. It comes from a quartz vein below the earth’s crust bubbling to the surface filtered. Jordan says, “Our dependence and even addiction to the existing industrial food machine has led to a disastrous “dis-connect” between us and our FOOD. We are at a critical crossroads as a nation and our current path is NOT SUSTAINABLE—in any sense of the word.”

He is committed to sustainable farming and ranching. With food prices rising and possibilities looming of food shortages, I think it’s imperative to have your name on this list so that you can order these pure, organic foods that are raised in a sustainable manner whenever you wish. You’ll be on the ground floor, should there ever be a cut-off point where no new customers are accepted. I only say this because recently I was told by one of my organic food product suppliers that they are accepting no new customers because there is a shortage of that product.

I’m on the list of buyers and don’t have to worry, but what about the people who want the product and can’t get it? That led me to think about the possibility of other food shortages. Have you every wondered what would happen to you or your family if the three to four days worth of groceries at your local supermarket were not replenished? What would you do for food? What if your water supply was cut off? Signing up now is “By Invitation Only,” and is not open to the general public until October of this year.

I’m inviting you to sign up using my code, which is 0000000746. When you sign up at no cost, there will be special compensation incentives that will last only until the launch in October. It costs you nothing but a few minutes of your time. And if you would like to consider this Mission Marketing opportunity for a business, then tell your family and friends to sign up as well under your code. If you want to become a Preferred Customer or a Mission Marketer (and make this a business) you can get more information about enrolling here — http://cheriecalbom.mybeyondorganic.com/Web/us/en/business-enroll.dhtml To order products, go to http://cheriecalbom.mybeyondorganic.com/Web/us/en/index.dhtml