Going organic for potentially improved health

Many people enjoy eating organically

Canadians interested in a more natural approach to eating and health may want to consider the benefits of eating organically. Organic Week, which ran from September 16-24, 2017, was designed to celebrate (and educate people about) the positive aspects that can be a result of incorporating more organic foods into their daily diets. The event was run by the Canadian Health Food Association (CHFA), which is dedicated to communicating information about an organic lifestyle.

"The organic movement only continues to grow as we see new and innovative products being made available, making it easier than ever for Canadian consumers to choose organic," said CHFA president Helen Long. But why should Canadians make an effort to look for organic foods and products?

Pesticides and chemicals
Many people are becoming increasingly concerned with the origins of their foods and what is placed on them. According to Time, those who choose the organic route may do so because they are concerned with synthetic pesticides or artificial fertilizers which can get into fruits and vegetables. For some Canadians, genetic modification of plants is also a concern. Choosing to eat organically may also be a conscious decision to support the environment and smaller, local farmers who may not have the funds or the desire to treat their produce with preventative chemicals. Canadians can tell is a product is at least 95 percent organic or not if it has the Canada Organic logo.

According to the source, organic foods may contain an increased number of antioxidants as opposed to those which are conventionally-grown. Organic meat may also be hormone-free, which can be a concern for many individuals.

"The wide variety of products offered makes it easier than ever for Canadians to go organic," says Michelle W. Book, CHFA's in-house holistic nutritionist.

Organic food trends
Earlier in 2017, the CHFA released its predictions for which foods would be trending. Along with being organic, sprouted foods were slated to become popular this year. According to the association, sprouts are a part of a meal that can be grown easily in the home and have many included nutrients. Sprouts are low in calories and in fats but are comprised of a form of protein that humans can easily digest. Mung beans, meanwhile, are another example of sprouts which interested individuals can incorporate into a wide variety of dishes.

The association also determined that non-dairy milks would increase in popularity. For those who are lactose intolerant, the liquids made from ingredients like almond, coconut, soy and hemp can enable them to enjoy dairy dishes without the ensuing discomfort. Newer non-dairy milks include cashew or oat milk, which some may find to be a pleasing alternative.

Making the decision to incorporate more organic foods into a healthy eating plan can be something many Canadians find works well for them. Any major changes to diet should be discussed with a medical professional first, but eating more fruits and vegetables – organic or not – can eventually lead to other healthy habits.