Ugh. I dread news articles that ultimately do nothing but confuse the public.
A few moments ago I received a tweet from @intellijenntsia, who wanted to know what I thought of this article, which reports that according to research from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, “organic food has no nutritional or health benefits over ordinary food.”
While vitamin and mineral content in organic and conventional crops may be the same (that, by the way, is what the researchers based their conclusion on), I find the “organic food is no healthier” headline absolutely misleading.
It could very well be argued that the lack of pesticides in organic crops inherently makes them a healthier alternative to conventional varieties, especially when it comes to berries, peaches, and apples (which have some of the highest pesticide loads).
So, in reality, what we are looking at is that organic “may be no more nutritious“, which is different from “no healthier”.
I also greatly dislike the fact that organic food is only discussed within a framework of health and nutrition. Many people prefer to buy organic for environmental reasons.
The findings are relevant, though, in the sense that the term “organic” carries with it a health halo.
People have told me they prefer to buy organic gummy bears for their children because they are “healthier.” I beg to differ. Empty calories are empty calories.