There are dozens of diets that claim to be the key to vitality, I am personally very against dieting. When people go on diets they give themselves a way out, Diets are temporary. Our lives can be optimized by a collection of small lifestyle choices that remove require little change in daily activities. The cumulative effect of these small actions lead to a drastic spike in quality of life. No more talk show diets, chemical foods, or takeout windows, just real food brought to you in a clean manner.
Welcome to Grassfed.
Week 1: Organic Whole Foods
Part 1: What is organic?
100 years ago all food was organic.
So instead let’s start with what isn’t organic..
In post WW2 America, there was an extreme surplus of Ammonium Nitrate (Used to make explosives) that just so happened to be the missing element in the Tennessee Valley Authority’s soil enhancement project. Solution? Transition TNT plants to start to making fertilizer. In 1947, a munitions plant in Muscle Shoals, Alabama was fully transitioned to a Chemical Fertilizer plant and began adding the bomb ingredients to the food supply. At this point we entered a new era of food and things would never be the same.
After being approved in 1994 and released for public consumption in 1996, GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms) have been in my opinion the most destructive “advancement” in the history of food. These patented crops that can supposedly “save the world” take agriculture to a much deeper(darker) level.
A genetically modified organism has been altered at the genetic level, Scientists find certain desirable traits and infuse their DNA into another crop to maximize yield, enhance nutrients, or anything else they want to do. There are continual studies saying that these manipulations are completely safe (Not to mention who is funding the studies, an article for another day) but an even greater danger comes when the necessary pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides are applied.
Pesticides & Herbicides
-ide :To Kill
Pesticides- To Kill Pests
Herbicides- To Kill Herbs
2,4 D or 2,4-Dichlorophenoxyacetic acid was one of the major components in Agent Orange, linked to Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, DNA Damage, and is now available at Walmart for just $16.99. You would think that after obvious health ramifications these would be removed from circulation, but there’s far too much money to be made.
The two most popular pesticides being used in the US today are Glyphosate and Atrazine.
Don’t you love how easy it is to just spray RoundUp in the cracks of your sidewalk and watch them shrivel up? As a kid, I always wondered how such a liquid could do this, I now know that this toxic cocktail was Glyphosate and it is sprayed on just about all conventional foods sold today. Glyphosate has been linked to Autism, ADHD, Diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and even Celiac’s Disease but the long-term effects are still being studied.
Atrazine has been banned by the European Union since 2006 but the US continues to spray just it, mostly on Sugar, Sorghum, and Christmas Trees. This herbicide has been proven to cause hermaphrodite frogs that have both male and female sex organs, as well as producing eggs. The “exposed males suffered from depressed testosterone, decreased breeding gland size, demasculinized/feminized laryngeal development, suppressed mating behavior, reduced spermatogenesis, and decreased fertility” (3) and 10% of the male subjects developed into fully functional females.
Photo by: Trevor Mott
How can we avoid these?
“Know your farmer, Know your food”
This phrase sums it all up, know where your food is coming from. Most produce that is accessible at grocery stores has been picked at least a week ago and has been coated for transport to maintain freshness. By going directly to the source (Farm, CSA, Famer’s Market) you can see who is growing it, what they are spraying on it, and what their stance is on organics.
Shopping Organic is always the best choice, but The Environmental Working Group has helped us determine what produce should be purchased only organically and what conventional items are acceptable.
OK-The Clean Fifteen: Sweet Corn (Avoid GMO Varieties), Avocados, Pineapples, Cabbage, Onions, Frozen Sweet Peas, Papayas, Asparagus, Mangos, Eggplant, Honeydew, Kiwi, Cantaloupe, Cauliflower, Grapefruit
NOT OK-The Dirty Dozen: Strawberries, Spinach, Nectarines, Apples, Peaches, Pears, Cherries, Grapes, Celery, Tomatoes, Sweet Bell Peppers, Potatoes, Hot Peppers (13th)
Yes, I understand that organic foods can be more expensive, but if there is one thing about life in the 21st century health care… You are either going to pay now for a healthy lifestyle or for doctor bills down the line.
Where do we start?
As consumers, we vote with our dollars. Companies are organized to increase profits every year, they are going to sell whatever it takes to hit those numbers. As we begin to buy ethical products made by fairly treated employees, in safe conditions, with non-toxic ingredients, we see the change that happens. We must be in charge, don’t buy something because they said you need it…demand that they sell what you need or boycott. If we all come together and support honest business practices we can morph the future of business and agriculture.
Want to help?