A major study published in Environmental Health Perspectives this month found that children who eat organic food at least once a week have lower levels of organophosphate pesticide (OP) metabolites in their blood. Pregnant women and children who eat more conventionally grown fruit have higher OP levels. High OP levels in pregnant women can lead to less growth and neurological problems for their babies, including an increased risk of autism. A Medical Press article on the study quotes co-author Leda Chatzi:
The choice of organic over conventionally grown fruits contributed to lower exposures of pesticides and phthalates, while retaining the health benefits of fruit and vegetable consumption. We believe the results carry important public health messages related to the avoidance of excess exposure to environmental contaminants with toxic effects on humans.
The study also found that eating more fish increased blood levels of PFAS, PCBs, mercury, and arsenic. These contaminants increase risk of many physical and mental problems. If you do eat fish, please consider having no more than three servings a week as an adult and limiting children to two servings a week. I remember when I had a tuna-fish sandwich for lunch every day. No more!
For more information, see my page on Why Cook Organic Food?
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