Does Organic Matter?

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Its no secret that we are what we eat.

As a mom, I care a lot about the food that is put on our table, and I try hard to better understand its effects. Lately, I find myself researching more and more elements of nutrition, and how to find a strong balance in our diets.

One of my research tangents has circled around organic food. Does it matter? Some studies say no- sure, there are far fewer antibiotics and more nutrients in organic milk, but eating one piece of fresh ocean fish would be better than drinking 5 gallons of organic milk.

Organic veggies certainly have more vitamins and minerals, too, but there are so many different sub-types of each vegetable, and ideas about what makes things “organic” that it is really hard to know if it is worth tripling the amount of money that I spend at the grocery store each week.

A bit lost in my research, I turned to an expert.

Matt Travis has a masters degree in physical education and is FMS certified; we both grew up in Westborough and believe in the family business model. (He runs a fitness facility- Athletic Revolution- with his family. I LOVE what he is doing there!!)

A couple of weeks ago, Matt spent a couple of hours in Stop & Shop (my nemesis) with me, sharing his wealth of knowledge about food and commitment to better eating all with an excited, knowledgeable, and patient tone.

His advice was pretty straightforward: shop local whenever it is possible, and go organic when you can.

We already buy all of our meat from a local farm, that practices organic farming, but I was excited to learn about some easy changes I could make in the rest of my life.

  • I switched from Stop & Shop brand yogurt, which has tons of artificial sweeteners, to Kefir, which has probiotics and lots of good stuff.
  • Instead of adding a bit of apply juice to my water, I started squishing in half of an organic lemon. (This is one of those fruits that is noted for being loaded with tons of pesticides, and since I’m putting the peel in my water every day, it makes sense to splurge a bit.)
  • We’re eating organic apples, again because we eat the peels.

So far, those are the small changes we committed to. Matt noted that broccoli is a great place to save some cash and skip the organic stuff, and that there is so much sugar in the Skippy peanut butter and Heinz ketchup that we eat, that it is well worth switching. So, I’m planning on switching to a sugar-free, corn-syrup free version to both of these.

Matt’s advice about bread was the same as my family practitioner’s- go Ezekiel. It is really pricey, and when I went through the ingredients of the Stop & Shop organic brand, for half of the price, I decided that we’re going to have a little sugar in our bread. (I figure that it is still better than the loaf of Italian bread that Patrick & I would both rather eat.)

But, when I read the ingredients on my beloved flax-wraps a little more closely, I saw what a big difference there is between Joseph’s and Ezekiel, so we’ll absolutely be switching the brand of wraps that we buy.

To be honest, I still have a lot of research, and changes, to make to my diet. I’m working hard on becoming a healthier me, and helping my family to develop healthy eating habits.

But I feel like we’re on the right track.And I haven’t touched Diet Coke in a month. 

 

 

 

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