by Carolanne Wright
In this day and age, most are aware that organic food is better for
the health of people and the planet.
With increasing levels of
exposure to toxins in the environment - like the burning of fossil
fuels and industrial waste - now more than ever, it's important to
consume a clean diet to keep the body healthy and strong.
organic food consumption is on the rise, we still have much to learn
about the overall benefits for personal and collective health, not
only on a physical level, but also mentally and, some say,
The Rise of
Cancer, ADHD and Endocrine Disorders
In 1962, Rachel Carson's book
Silent Spring brought the problem of
pesticides into the limelight, educating the general public about
the exceptional dangers of these chemicals to our health and the
Decades later, we may not be in as much active contact
with DDT, but we're exposed to equally harmful pesticides in greater
concentrations - much more so than in the past.
The Toxics Action
Center offers a sobering insight into the issue:
"Chronic health effects may occur years after even minimal exposure
to pesticides in the environment, or result from the pesticide
residues which we ingest through our food and water.
A July 2007
study conducted by researchers at the Public Health Institute, the
California Department of Health Services, and the UC Berkeley School
of Public Health found a sixfold increase in risk factor for autism
spectrum disorders (ASD) for children of women who were exposed to
Moreover, research from the University of Montreal and Harvard
University discovered that children who ingest pesticide residues on
produce have a two-fold risk of attention deficit hyperactivity
disorder (ADHD) - a syndrome which causes disruptive inattention,
abnormally active behavior and impulsivity.
The National Cancer Institute also found that American farmers who
use agricultural pesticides have a high incidence of,
...as well as other types of
Likewise, a study (Pesticide
Exposure and Depression Among Agricultural Workers in France) published in the
American Journal of
"that farmers who use weedkillers are more than
twice as likely to suffer from depression than farmers who don't use
And farmers who had higher exposure - through either
more hours or longer years using weedkillers - had the greatest
risk. And a study published in 2013 revealed that using insecticides
is linked with an increased incidence of Parkinson's disease."
Dr. Emanuele Cereda, M.D., Ph.D., and Dr.
Gianni Pezzoli, M.D.,
reviewed the data from 104 studies which were published between 1975
What they found is that
exposure to pesticides is linked
with a 58% increased risk of developing the disease. Certain
herbicides and fungicides actually double Parkinson's disease risk.
The chemicals are also associated with:
That's not all. Pesticides also destroy the environment...
As I wrote
Here's What Happens When you Eat a 100% Organic Diet:
"The toxins damage agricultural land by harming beneficial insects,
soil microorganisms and worms - all of which contribute to healthy
soil and naturally limit detrimental pests.
Plant root and immune
systems are also negatively impacted by pesticides, as are
concentrations of important nutrients such as nitrogen and
When we look at the big picture, science presents a strong argument
for eating organically if we would like to promote health of our
bodies and mind, along with safeguarding the environment.
But can an
organic diet help us spiritually too?
The Soul of
Susan Bass is a teacher and practitioner of
Ayurvedic medicine and
believes in "energetics" of food, the theory that specific foods can
balance and enrich the mind, body and spirit.
"Nature is an aspect of the divine," she says.
"When we move with
the rhythms and cycles of nature, when we sleep, get up and eat what
is in season, we connect with the divine."
always providing exactly what our bodies need to thrive."
why eating locally grown, fresh, organic food is so important. The
food that grows in our area is what the creatures here need to stay
in balance with the earth."
Caroline Kelly, a member of
Jesuit Volunteer Corps Northwest,
"Beyond our physical bodies, we are part of a much larger body..."
"I believe we were created to be part of the structure, not
to dominate the structure. When we mono crop, use pesticides and
fertilizers, we are violating a biome that god created," she says.
"This is a system created to sustain us. If we violate it,
eventually we violate our own bodies. The spread of chronic disease
makes me think this is already happening."
As it turns out, both Bass and Kelly might be on to something.
Using Kirlian photography, researchers have discovered the
of organic foods emit,
"a clearly more vibrant and harmonious energy
field than conventional foods."
Ripe, just picked organic produce
had the strongest energy field.
"Raw foods also fared better in the
energy department than cooked and pasteurized foods, the latter of
which appeared duller and less uniform than their raw counterparts."
Some believe this energy field represents a food's "life source" and
that consuming such high vibrational food, that's not over-processed
or pesticide-ridden, keeps us healthy and strong - both physically
and mentally, as well as spiritually.
So dig in and reap the benefits of locally grown, organic food.
body, mind and soul will thank you.