The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institutes of Health, American Heart Association, the National Cancer Institute, Hallelujah Diet and other health-related organizations all recommend eating more fruits and vegetables for disease prevention and optimal health.
But are organic foods better than conventional?
On the one hand, it’s better to consume conventionally farmed vegetables than no vegetables at all. However, organic and many local organic farmers follow U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) standards that don’t apply to conventional farming and the vast majority of produce that people eat. Organic farmers don’t use:
- Genetically modified organisms (GMO)
- Synthetic fertilizers
- Sewage sludge
Why is this important? The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says that 90% of fungicides, 60% of herbicides and 30% of insecticides are carcinogenic. They can damage your nervous system as well.
Organic farmers generally follow best practices in farming by:
- Practicing water and soil conservation
- Reducing pollution
- Using natural fertilizers to feed the soil and the plants
- Rotating crops and mulching to control weeds
How do you know whether your vegetables (and fruits) are truly organic? The USDA standards govern how plants are grown, handled and processed. Any produce labeled organic must be USDA certified. Look for the USDA Organic label, which isn’t required, but many organic farmers use it. If you buy your produce from a local farmer who generates less than $5,000 annually in organic food sales, that farmer will be exempt from the certification, so you won’t see the USDA Organic label.
Is organic produce more nutritious?
While many recent studies have shown little difference between organic and non-organic produce in terms of nutritional value, this is still an area of controversy. In “Nutritional Quality of Organic Versus Conventional Fruits, Vegetables, and Grains,” an article by Virginia Worthington, MS, ScD, CNS, she says that “Organic crops contained significantly more vitamin C, iron, magnesium, and phosphorus and significantly less nitrates than conventional crops” (Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine). Also,
- In a 2010 study, Washington State University scientists concluded that organic strawberries have more vitamin C and antioxidants than conventional strawberries.
- According to a study published in July of 2012 by scientists at the University of Barcelona, organic tomatoes have more of the antioxidant polyphenols than commercially grown tomatoes.
And, of course, most people who prefer organic foods aren’t necessarily concerned about nutritional content. They simply want to avoid potentially harmful pesticides, hormones and other chemicals that can make them sick.
What if you can’t always afford or find organic produce?
In their most recent analysis of USDA pesticide residue testing data, The Environmental Working Group ranked conventionally farmed foods from worst to best:
So, if you can’t buy everything organic, focus on the top of this list and avoid conventional produce that the USDA has determined to be highest in pesticide residue.
What is the best way to consume vegetables (and fruits)?
Most health experts today agree on at least one thing: one of the best ways to improve or maintain your health is a steady diet of fresh, high quality, minimally processed vegetables and fruits. Most should be consumed raw and as many as possible should be locally grown and organic.
However, you cannot eat enough vegetables and fruits to feed your body the living nutrition you need for optimal health for three reasons:
- Because of today’s commercial farming practices, most fruits and vegetables are significantly less nutritious than they used to be. Donald R. Davis states that “Recent studies of historical nutrient content data for fruits and vegetables spanning 50 to 70 years show apparent median declines of 5% to 40% or more in minerals, vitamins, and protein in groups of foods, especially in vegetables.” (“Declining Fruit and Vegetable Nutrient Composition: What is the Evidence?” HortScience 44:1 February 2009)
- In his landmark book, Live Food Juices, E. Kirschner, M.D., says: “…The power to break down the cellular structure of raw vegetables, and assimilate the precious elements they contain, even in the healthiest individual is only fractional, not more than 35%, and in the less healthy, down to 1%.”
- Even when we eat high quality vegetables, our teeth can’t possibly rupture all the cells within the vegetables. Those cells store the nutrients. Because we don’t unlock many of those nutrients, they simply pass through our body.
If we can’t get all the nutrients we need from the foods we eat, what do we do? Dr. Kirschner says that “In the form of juice,” we can “assimilate up to 92% of these elements,” i.e., the living nutrients from raw vegetables.” Juicing raw vegetables (and fruits) may seem like a time-consuming process, but it’s actually fairly quick and easy with the right juicer
But what do you do when you can’t bring your juicer with you? A great alternative is a juice powder that, when mixed with distilled water or organic apple juice, bathes your cells with the living enzymes needed to keep those cells healthy.
Based on scientific testing,BarleyMax is one of the highest quality living juice powders and the most nutritionally dense product available. From the choice of seed to proper irrigation, timely harvest, unique method of dehydrating the juice into a powder and even how it’s stored, BarleyMax is carefully produced so that it consistently delivers an enzymatically active, vibrant and fresh-tasting green drink.
Other healthy options include:
- You can make a blended salad with a powerful blender, thereby “masticating” all the veggies’ cells. According to Dr. Russell Blaylock, a retired board-certified neurosurgeon, a blended salad may release as much as 700% more nutrients than a chewed salad.
- Green Smoothies are a quick and easy way to feed your body’s cells plant-based nutrients with liquefied vegetables and fruits.
- Our Survival Bars are unique in that they are the only ones that are made with the flavors of BarleyMax, CarrotJuiceMax, and BeetMax—organic, raw juice powders that bathe your cells in rich nutrients. They are made of 100% raw dried fruits, seeds and nuts to provide you with the nourishment and energy you need.
It’s all about enzymatic activity at the cellular level
Your body is a living organism composed of living cells designed by God to be nourished by living foods. Our cells die and are replaced with new ones at the rate of approximately 300 million per minute. If those new cells are healthy, we are healthy. If those cells are sick, we increase our risk of getting sick. Raw plant sourced foods provide the living nutrients and enzymatic activity our cells need to be as healthy as possible.
And we can get those nutrients primarily from vegetables and fruits (preferably organic), blending, juicing and a juice powder that is truly “raw” and provides maximum benefit.