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Friday, March 31, 2023

Green Guide

For For the Body and the Earth

For college students living on hectic schedules and living on a budget it can be hard to spend a little extra cash on organic groceries which are on average more expensive than conventionally grown products. Fortunately, eating organic does not have to be as expensive as some might think and it’s to ones health and the environment.

To become a savvy shopper one must be knowledgeable about the difference between organic products and conventionally grown items.

When items boast the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) organic label on them it means that farmers did not use chemical fertilizers to promote growth. These farmers also use more advanced methods of growing produce, such as crop rotation.

Only foods that are processed according to the standards set by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are labeled, these are not to be confused with foods bearing “Natural” or other similar labels.

The second step to efficiently shop for organic products is being aware of the benefits they offer and when it is not necessary to shop organic.

According to a study published by the Stanford medical school, researchers found little difference in the health benefits between eating organic and conventionally grown produce given their composition of essential vitamins and nutrients.

“When it comes to organic foods I don’t really take the time to do research about it. I just assume it’s more expensive than regular food,” said Ramon Marquez, chemical engineering sophomore, “so I don’t go out of my way to get organic food.”

Choosing to eat organic can be more about controversial issues like the environment and animal welfare than precise health benefits. Organic farmers use methods that do not deplete the soil. Usually organic meats, such as chicken, get exposure to the outside world and are not injected with hormones unlike their conventionally bred counterparts who never see sunlight and often have bodies that are too big for their legs to carry.

The same research study conducted by Stanford found that in children who eat organic produce as opposed to conventionally grown have much less traces of pesticide in their urine.

“I could see the benefits towards the environment,” said Jose Iraheta, an undeclared freshmen.

“I think its mostly a money thing. I wouldn’t mind looking into it, but my budget right now is literally pennies. I feel like I should know more about how it is grown and exactly how organic it is.”

After hearing this, one might not know whether to spend the extra buck buying organic products. Here are a few tips that might help when your contemplating getting those organic strawberries.

Remember to shop according to your budget and what you can afford.

Eat what you buy. We all have been guilty of not eating something we have bought. Organic products spoil faster than conventionally grown foods, so it is essential to eat them within a few days before they start to rot.

Follow your ethics. Do not feel pressured to buy organic because all your friends or parents have jumped on the bandwagon. If eating organic is not a big deal and you would rather save the cash keep it in bank; but if you feel like you are truly making a difference to yourself and the world by eating organic then do it.

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