We are what we eat: value of organic - Alma Vale Centre

As it’s Organic September, Naturopathic Nutritional Therapist Penelope Barnett sets out the benefits of organic produce to our body


What are the benefits?

Organic, to me, means working with nature not against it.

Organic promotes higher levels of animal welfare, lower levels of pesticides, no manufactured herbicides or artificial fertilisers and a more environmentally sustainable management of the land and natural environment – which leads to the conservation and ecological development of wildlife.

The term ‘organic’ when referring to food relates to the lack of genetic modification, artificial colours and preservatives, fewer pesticides and a high standard of animal welfare.


Antibiotic controversy

The routine use of antibiotics in meat and poultry farming is one of the most debatable issues around non-organic farming. This is because it is not only potentially damaging to the animals, but also those antibiotics are then still present in the meat that we consume. This then fuels hard-to-kill antibiotic-resistant germs that can sicken or potentially be fatal to humans.


We are what we eat

As our bodies require food as fuel, and our skin absorbs around 60-70% of what we put on it, then we can conclude that we are partly made up of the food we eat, and the products we use. So choosing food that is not chemically altered, and closer to its natural form, will be easier for the body to recognise and assimilate. This is because the micro- and macronutrients that are found in nature, and in our soil, can also be found in our body.

Organic produce has been found to be higher in vitamins, minerals and enzymes. All of these are beneficial for our health, give more energy and contribute to the healing of chronic and acute illnesses.


Growing trend

Fortunately, there’s a growing market of organic food, skincare and household products, plus an increase in consumer interest. This in turn is influencing shops and restaurants to stock and serve these products – which is then creating market competition that leads to price drops.

However, as this trend is still growing and organic fruit and veg still isn’t always available, or affordable for everyone for every meal, here’s a guide called the ‘Clean 15’ of fruit and veg that are the least likely to contain pesticide residue:


Clean 15 fruit and veg

  1. Avocados
  2. Sweet Corn
  3. Pineapples
  4. Cabbage
  5. Sweet Peas
  6. Onion
  7. Asparagus
  8. Mangoes
  9. Papayas
  10. Kiwi
  11. Aubergine
  12. Grapefruit
  13. Melon
  14. Cauliflower
  15. Sweet Potatoes

Head to the Environmental Working Group website to find out about the ‘Dirty Dozen’.

Savoury recipe

For a super quick organic dinner, why not try: King Soba Brown rice + wakame noodles, lightly grilled Sunita polenta and veg in coconut oil with olives and cashews topped with basil.

For details of therapies on offer at the Alma Vale Centre, see the therapies section of our website.

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