Conventional farming uses pesticides and chemical fertilizers. Organic farming minimizes pesticides and uses natural, nutrient-rich fertilizers. Pesticides exert stress on the liver and kidneys and can negatively impact digestion, detoxification, the immune system, and energy level. Most pesticides used today have an estrogenic and, eventually, a mutagenic effect on the body. This means that the person who is exposed to pesticides, whether through diet, skin contact, or inhalation, will be more likely to suffer from such symptoms as fatigue, edema, food sensitivities, rashes and other skin outbreaks, irritable bowel syndrome, infertility, depression, and reduced mental concentration. They will also be more likely to develop degenerative ailments, such as arthritis, diabetes, cancer, Parkinson’s, disease, and Alzheimer’s disease. Biodynamic farming, an even more holistic approach to farming than organic, uses natural composts, treats farm animals humanely, and synchronizes planting and harvesting with times of day and phases of the moon.
Our soil has been adulterated by chemical fertilizers and depleted through continuous planting and harvesting without times of rest, i.e. a fallow year after several years of farming. Crops pull nutrients from the soil in order to grow, and these nutrients are often not fully replaced. Fewer nutrients in the soil results in fewer nutrients in crops, and therefore less nutrients for humans and other animals to absorb from food. Instead of using nutrient-rich fertilizers such as mushroom compost, vegetable compost, liquid kelp, or manure from grass fed, organically raised cows, conventional farmers use chemical fertilizers that only replace a few lost minerals – usually just phosphorous, nitrogen, sulfur, potassium, and calcium. Even these minerals are not replenished completely by chemical fertilizers. Produce and animal products from large, organic farms are less toxic and more nutrient-rich than the products from conventional farms. We can enjoy and benefit from even better nutrition by shopping at organic farmers markets or growing food in our homes, yards, or community gardens. Indoor or backyard composting is one way to enrich our soil and decrease household waste at the same time. Check out Urban Worm Girl, a Chicago-based home composting non-profit. Nutritional products, such as herbal tonics and some vitamin and mineral supplements made from food rather than chemicals, can help make up for some of the nutrients lacking in today’s diets. Some companies which sell excellent vitamin products include Shaklee, Standard Process, and The Synergy Company.
GMO agriculture is relatively new; there is not yet sufficient data to predict how these products will affect the world’s populations. What we do know is that a significant number of people have developed sensitivities and allergies to wheat, corn, soy, and other genetically modified crops. This does not bode well for the future of more sensitive people, since more and more crops are being modified in this way. Some European countries are boycotting GMO crops.
Some of the most striking arguments for eating organically grown food can be found in chapters 23 and 24 of A Cancer Therapy Results of Fifty Cases, written by Max Gerson, M.D., copyright 1958. Ground-breaking then, it is still highly relevant today. I recommend that you obtain the book and read it. It can be found at the public library and can be purchased in paperback or as an e-book.
This month’s offer: bring in your nutritional supplements plus a week’s food diary and I will make suggestions about changes you can make to improve your energy level and health. There will be a charge of $50.00 for this service, and insurance does not apply. Please share this blog with others.