Knowing to avoid processed foods is pretty much a “no-brainer”, but did you know that many fruits, vegetables, and other foods considered to be healthy contain dangerous levels of toxins that can prematurely contribute to our demise? So, here we are, making an effort to increase our consumption of fruits and vegetables, and yet we still may be unknowingly exposing ourselves to dangerous toxins that are actually worse for our health than a poor diet. Let’s face it, while modern science may have initially had good intentions to boost productions levels, increase flavor, and preserve foods, these very foods are a huge contributing factor to the development of many of today’s illnesses.
We’ve always thought it was safe to stick to the produce aisles in our local grocery stores, but some of these foods may be just as bad for us as processed, fast foods. Some of these problematic foods include: apples, peaches, strawberries, cherries, tomatoes, and potatoes. Unless you’re purchasing organic produce, many growers use more than 36 different pesticides on apple trees, for example. Strawberry growers in the United States have used as much as 500 pounds of pesticides per acre. And we all know there’s no way we can wash off those pesticides without damaging the strawberry itself. Additional foods, such as potatoes and tomatoes, are also suspect. Did you know that eating a potato that has gone bad and turned green can be deadly? In addition, tomatoes are treated with multiple kinds of pesticides and their stems have poisonous stems and leaves. And how about bananas? The majority of the bananas we consume in the United States come from countries where there is very little or no regulation on pesticide use.
Even the packaging of our foods may be hastening our demise. For example, the toxic chemical Bisphenol A (or BPA), has been used in the lining of plastic bottles and cans for many years. This chemical has been found to have harmful side effects on fetuses, infants, toddlers, as well as on our brains, behavioral patterns, and prostate glands. Aspartame, an artificial sweetener found in some packaged foods and beverages, can lead to serious illness and even death. Other side effects of aspartame include migraines, seizures, muscle spasms, heart palpitations, and slurred speech.
It’s All up to You
Ultimately, it’s up to us to be wise consumers when choosing our foods in order to avoid exposure to all of these toxic substances. We highly recommend purchasing organic foods whenever possible for multiple reasons: they are not produced with the use of artificial pesticides, antibiotics, synthetic fertilizers, and are hormone-free; organic foods are not genetically modified; they contain larger amounts of beneficial vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and essential fatty acids. Also added into the equation are the benefits of organic farming. For one thing, organic farming saves energy. Conventional farming uses more petroleum than any other single industry. Organic farming involves the humane treatment to animals, and the animals are typically raised free-range and are not confined to overcrowded feeding pens. We also always advise our patients to consume grass-fed (pastured) meats and dairy products, as well as wild-caught fish. Food quality is key to optimal health and longevity.
photo credit: <a href=”https://www.flickr.com/photos/dag_endresen/4189812241/”>Dag Endresen</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/”>cc</a>
photo credit: <a href=”https://www.flickr.com/photos/mliu92/6361602825/”>mliu92</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/”>cc</a>
photo credit: <a href=”https://www.flickr.com/photos/mr_t_in_dc/5919993850/”>Mr.TinDC</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/”>cc</a>