Are Organic Foods Better for You? Yes and No

When you see me at the store I am usually scouring the produce in the organic isle at Whole Foods or Central Market. I know that  my body doesn’t need any extra chemicals and pesticides. I think that the majority of people feel that organic veggies and fruits are usually better than the conventionally grown farm foods but organic may not be the treasure chest of nutrients either. Let me explain how this happened and why supplements (food base supplements are really not an option if you want to build or keep your health.

The term ‘organic’ means that no poisonous or commercial fertilizers were used in the past two or three years. This may protect consumers as well as farmers against potential causes of cancer, but there is nothing about a label of organic that ensures that food is grown in mineral-rich soil.

In 1992, the Earth Summit in Rio confirmed that the average US farm soils were 85 per cent depleted of minerals compared with a worldwide depletion of 75 per cent. So how did this happen?

As far back as 1936, a US Senate report (Document 264) stated that American farms and ranges were depleted of minerals and so, therefore, was the food. The researchers who wrote the Senate document tested a large, representative sample of soils. I know that this shocked me. To think that as far back as 1936 the soil was depleted is astounding right. Most of us of thinking they didn’t even have junk food back then. Most families had there own garden and ate fresh right after mom washed all the bugs off.

The implications of this report was staggering. The implications of their report were staggering. It meant that some 99 per cent of the public were deficient in a vast array of minerals back in 1936. Even at that time, it was recommended that the diets of farm animals and people should be supplemented with minerals

Wow, think about our food today? The only thing that has changed since that time is that the overall problem has worsened. Today’s soils—even organic soils—contain
very little of what humans need every day of their lives. Consequently, most ‘food’ that arrives on our tables has very little in the way of vitamins and minerals essential to human health so it is impossible to get all the nutrients our bodies need from food alone.

How did the Soil get so sick?

Back in the 19th century when families  were farming on American prairies  they couldn’t stay long. The pioneers didn’t apply the farming techniques of their European anscesters such as crop rotation, cover crops and leaving fields fallow.

The soil yielded ample food for five to eight years but, soon after that, the corn grew
only two feet high and couldn’t make ears. These early farmers weren’t putting anything back into the ground, so the soil was “played out”. If they made it through the first winter,the survivors trekked farther west to start over. This practice went on
without end.

So Who is Justus von Lieig? And what does he have to do with our depleted Soil?

Chemist Justus von Liebig (1803–1873) of Germany originated the absurd theory that N, P and K provided all the needed minerals for animals and humans. This was because, given his crude equipment, only those three substances showed up in the ash from burning plant material. The 11th edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica indicates
that, ultimately, he completely recanted the theory. More up-to-date technology revealed to him a long

So from this narrow sided discovery NPK was introduced—a fertilizer consisting of nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P) and potassium (K). For farmers who would have had to move west regularly, at first this appeared to be a great boon.But carrying on such a practice 100 years later is nothing less than a gigantic, harmful, worldwide fraud. The three numbers on fertilizer bags at any garden shop show their contents ratios. With those three minerals in proportions right for local conditions (plus water, warmth and light), plants will look healthy, and yield the maximum tons and bushels—the kind of yield that ensures the farmer gets paid.

Maybe the farmer gets paid but the end user you and me are eating produce and meats that do not have the nutrients to support a healthy body. So even oil in which crops are raised has been fed only NPK for decades before organic treatment began, the food is still likely to be mineral deficient. Levels of some of the desirable nutrients in organic
food are still, on average, 75 per cent too low (Austrailas Health Healing, 1995; Aug–Oct: 43–5).

Weathered manure helps those organic farms where it is used, provided the animals are grassfed rather than grainfed, or raised in the US mandate that farm animals are fed all the required minerals.
Although there have been more than 40 studies in this field, comparing results is difficult since these studies are a very mixed bag of organic vs conventionally grown food or comparisons of farming systems. Organic consumers may be healthier in other ways, organic food may be stored differently and even different weather conditions
can affect nutrient content.
Nevertheless, when all the data are reviewed together, there is a
clear trend supporting the notion that organic foods are more nutritious

(J Alt Complement Med, 2001; 7: 161–73).One study found that organic fruits and vegetables in the samples tested were better than what can usually be purchased at your local supermarket. In this test, organic foods offered up to four times more trace elements, 13 times more selenium, and 20 times more calcium and manganese than supermarket foods. And organic foods contained 40 per cent less aluminium, 29 per cent less cadmium, 25 per cent less lead and 28 per cent less rubidium—all elements commonly associated with illness.

Why is PH of the Soil so Important? And How it causes more Toxicity for our body

One study showed that more than a third of the soils in the Great Plains—the agricultural heart of America—has a soil pH of less than 5.5 whereas, to be alkaline, soils should have a pH above 7 (Oklahoma State Univ PT, 2000; 12: 1). Acid soils are low in magnesium and usually calcium, says the Canadian Ministry of Agriculture and Food.
Stimulated by NPK fertiliser, the plant grows, but is deficient in vital trace minerals. In their absence, plants take up heavy metals such as aluminium, mercury and lead from the soil. These are passed on to us through the food chain, and are readily assimilated into our bodies if we are deficient in protective nutrient minerals. Our bodies then retain
toxic minerals, traces of agricultural chemicals and a lot of chemical wastes purposely added to fertilizzers, causing long-term damage to our health (Wilson D, Fateful Harvest: The True Story of a Small Town, a Global Industry and a Toxic Secret, NY: HarperCollins, 2001).

I thought Farmer Put Lime in the Soil to Balance PH?

Liming the soil is used by farmers to counteract the extreme overacidity of the soil.
Liming is  adding dolomite limestone. This  practice adds calcium and magnesium, changes the soil pH and greatly increases the plant’s foliage. But it also severely depletes soil of manganese and other trace minerals (Pfeiffer C, Zinc and Other Micronutrients,
New Canaan, CT: Keats Publishing, 1978). Manganese is further depleted by insecticides, which inactivate choline-containing enzymes. This, in turn, prevents uptake of manganese and other minerals by the plants (J Orthomolec Med, 1996; 11: 69–79).

I could go on an on about the demineralization of our foods but you get the point. There is no way in God’s green earth that a person can get all their nutrients from food even with organic foods which fair better than commercially grown food.These days, with our highly depleted soils and the long time-lapse between the harvesting of food and its appearance on your table, it is virtually impossible to get all the nutrients your body needs from food.


Treat supplements with respect. There are lots on offer: some good,some bad, some completely useless. On the whole, you get what you pay for. Some preparations may seem expensive compared with their cheaper alternatives, but PROOF! tests have shown, time after time, that it’s the quality of the preparation and the reputation of the supplier you should look out for, not just the price tag

  • Shaklee Corporation is the # 1 Natural Nutrition Co for over 52 years has been making natural supplements with one end in mind. To produce the best most natural supplement that gets proven results.-
  • Dr. Shaklee set the philosophy that has guided this company for over 50 years – look to nature to provide direction for wholesome, life-sustaining products, use no ingredients that would cause harm to people or the planet, and guarantee product performance through scientific research and clinical testing.
  • Shaklee Guarantee – Shaklee  stands behind its product 100%
  • Products undergo as many as 262 separate quality assurance tests throughout the manufacturing process

As an aside because most of us are deficient in minerals adding Shaklee Alfalfa is a great way to add more minerals because Alfalfa roots go deeply into the soil and pick up trace minerals other plants do not.

If you haven’t see this Video on the Shaklee Difference you will see why the average Shaklee user has used products for an average of over 14 years and many families have for generations.

5) Over 90 published studies in peer-reviewed scientific journals–more than any other nutritional company.

Is organic produce better for you? Yes, of course it is. But the claim for the superiority of organic foods should not based on nutrient content alone. In some ways, the nutrient-content argument may even be misleading as it’s not what is in organic foods, but what isn’t.

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About the Author

Caroline Heinemann has a Bachelor’s Degree in Education from Concordia Teachers College in Seward Nebraska. She has coordinated a variety of educational programs in her local community and conducts regional business training events and teleconference training calls. She become personally interested in health when she experienced some personal health issues and found that alternative medicine has been the key to her health. She shares tips on staying healthy. She is a former and teacher and has owned her own health education business for the past 30 years

1 Comment on this article. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. Dave October 26, 2010 at 11:51 am -

    Great information! This shows that supplementation is necessary to get a balanced diet.

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