Now listen up! I need you to concentrate and really think about what I am about to tell you. Sure it’s going to take 5 minutes of your time to read this article but this may change your life.
Or you can choose to ignore this article and keep living your life in the comfort cocoon you’ve been spinning all your life. It sounds a little like that movie doesn’t it? You know, the one where Neo has to choose between the red and the blue pill. The red pill reveals the truth and the blue pill let’s you sink back into the comfortable lifestyle you’re used too. This article is something like that.
Now, I want you to choose. Choose now to read on or choose to go back to your comfort zone.
Did you choose?
Well done! I knew you were smart. Here we go. Although there are countless reasons to go organic I’ve selected the no. 1 reason that I’m sure will convince you to buy organic products and go green.
The No.1 reason to go organic? Your health.
Going green is common sense! But as you may know, common sense is not common. For an example let’s look at pesticides used on fruit and vegetable crops. Now pesticides is only one example I’m going mention here. But there are many other nasties such as genetically modified foods and harmful chemicals (preservatives, colourants) in our food to name but a few. I’m just sticking to pesticides for now.
The packaging, which contain these pesticides, are clearly labelled with signs such as the following:
- Warning: Toxic substance.
- Do not inhale.
- Warning poison: If swallowed call for medical assistance.
- Avoid contact with skin and eyes.
Like I said, common sense is not common when we as consumers know very well that pesticides are just plane bad and still we keep buying non-organically grown fruits and vegetables and feed it to our loved ones and ourselves.
Let’s take a quick look at the effects of pesticides on your food.
- Pesticides harm humans and animals because they are designed to kill or otherwise adversely affect living organisms. – Last time I checked I was a living organism!
- Overseas studies have shown that young children have an increased risk of getting leukemia if they live in a home where pesticides are often used, either in the home or garden. – So yes, Mom that insect killer you’re spraying may be odourless but you’re still inhaling the fumes.
- Childhood brain cancer has also been linked to the use of some pesticides.
- Symptoms of short-term exposure to pesticides include: dizziness, vomiting and nausea, headaches, difficulty sleeping, skin rashes, muscle twitches and pain, flu-like fever and breathing difficulties. That sounds nice doesn’t it?
- Exposure to a high concentration of pesticide could result in death. Oh, so that’s why they got a skeleton on the side of that pesticide barrel and the back of the doom can.
- Most pesticides persist in the environment for a long time and can continue to have harmful health effects long after they have been applied.
- Pesticides also pollute the underground water tables. Making it unsuitable for human consumption.
Now here’s my question. Why are they poisoning our food? The answer is quite simple… Money.
Industrialized farming is focused on getting as much produce to the market as possible with as little cost as possible. One could argue that pesticides wipe out the bad pests. But keep in mind that it also destroys other ‚not bad‚ living organisms. This upsets the eco balance and paves the way to a plethora of environmental disasters. But there is hope. There are many South African farmers who are using organic farming methods and there are many in the process of converting to organic farming methods. Not only does organic farming methods mean healthy fruits and vegetables but also it preserves the environment.
What can you do?
Going green and organic is about doing many things differently. It’s about reducing your carbon footprint, conserving energy (electricity) where you can and recycling your waste.
One if the first and easiest steps, is to start shopping responsibly. I like to call it conscious shopping. Think about this. Commercial viability depends on supply and demand. If we as consumers increase the demand for organic produce retailers will start listening. But we have to take action and stop buying conventional products and start buying and insisting on organic or natural products. There are also specialist organic and natural shops and farmers markets where you can buy organic or natural produce. Those farmers markets are quite delightful on sunny Saturday mornings. Perfect for a healthy family outing.