Elk Grove Village, IL—The advantages of an organic diet are convincing, according to a new clinical report published in Pediatrics by members of the Committee on Nutrition and the Council on Environmental Health of the American Academy of Pediatrics, based here.
The authors say that those who eat organic food are exposed to fewer pesticides that are linked with disease. Furthermore, animals raised for organic products are not given antibiotics, which contributes to a reduction of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Last, organic farming has less of a negative environmental impact than does conventional farming.
The Organic Trade Association (OTA) applauded Pediatrics for publishing these and other benefits of organic. “The science cited in this report points firmly towards positive aspects of organic farming, and confirms many reasons for purchasing organic foods,” said Christine Bushway, OTA’s CEO and executive director. “This information will help empower parents as they make decisions about what to feed their children.”
The report also pointed out that organic produce offers more total phenols, vitamin C and phosphorus (and less nitrates) than conventional produce, according to studies. But in a statement somewhat reminiscent of the Stanford study on organic, the team also stated that research does not indicate that organic has a nutritional leg-up on conventional foods. The researchers believe no “well-powered human studies” show a direct cause-and-effect relation between eating organic foods and disease protection.
The goal of the report is to help physicians give advice to families about their food choices. The authors recommend that pediatricians tell parents interested in an organic diet about the strengths and weakness of the science on organic farming and produce.
Published in WholeFoods Magazine, December 2012 (online 10/23/12)