Conventional versus organic foods, a meta-analysis.

I heard about this on NPR this morning and wanted to share. It is a big meta-analysis of a bunch of studies regarding organic produce versus “standard” produce. They admitted it was relatively limited in scope, but the results are interesting nonetheless.

The gist:

“The review yielded scant evidence that conventional foods posed greater health risks than organic products. While researchers found that organic produce had a 30 percent lower risk of pesticide contamination than conventional fruits and vegetables, organic foods are not necessarily 100 percent free of pesticides. What’s more, as the researchers noted, the pesticide levels of all foods generally fell within the allowable safety limits. Two studies of children consuming organic and conventional diets did find lower levels of pesticide residues in the urine of children on organic diets, though the significance of these findings on child health is unclear. Additionally, organic chicken and pork appeared to reduce exposure to antibiotic-resistant bacteria, but the clinical significance of this is also unclear.”

Does this change your mind about buying organic? If nothing else, it makes me feel less guilty about the times when I can’t afford to buy organic, though we usually buy organic as much as we can. I don’t think the study addresses dairy products.

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