Read these 7 Organic Food and Produce Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Green Living tips and hundreds of other topics.
The animals that produce organic meats are raised without the use of antibiotics, hormones, pesticides, herbicides or other artificial drugs. Most of these animals are allowed to roam in grass-fed pastures. The grain and hay they eat are organic. The old saying, "you are what you eat," certainly applies here. When the animals eat only the best organic feed and get plenty of fresh air and exercise they produce better meat. Anyone who has tried organic meat knows that you can taste the difference. The meat is far more tender, has a better taste and is healthier for you. Animals that are allowed to roam tend to have less fat on them than animals that are confined. Free-range, grass fed animals produce meat that is higher in Omega 3 fatty acids. Many times grass-fed beef are not given grains of any kind. Instead they are managed on a high quality organic pasture with hay supplements. Many of the farms that raise organic meat are family owned. If you are looking for a local source of organic meats try a CSA or community supported agriculture farm. In addition to offering organic fruits and vegetables from their farms, many of them also offer herbs, flowers, eggs and meat. Making the switch to organic meats can help the environment too. The waste of conventional grown animals has tested high in antibiotics and hormones. This waste ends up polluting our natural water supplies. Free range animals have waste too, but not as much because fewer are raised in the same amount of space.
Organic food recipes taste great, are simple to prepare because they don't use a lot of ingredients and are packed full of nutrients. Organic food recipes use the freshest ingredients that are grown in using organic methods. The majority of the ingredients needed for these recipes should be available at an organic grocery store, health food store or organic food market. The main difference between organic food recipes and standard recipes is the way the ingredients were grown and processed. Organic foods are sold in season which is another main difference. Cooks who use organic foods have learned how to choose fruits and vegetables for their organic food recipes according to the harvesting season, especially if they buy produce that is locally grown. Some organic food suppliers do can or freeze their products which make getting out of season fruits and vegetables easier. However, many organic cooks prefer to use fresh fruits and vegetables because the nutrients are higher and the dishes taste better. Organic food recipes also call for different methods of preparation such as steaming or baking. These methods of food preparation are healthier and help keep the majority of nutrients in the foods. Other organic food recipes might call for the ingredients, such as fruit or nuts, to be eaten raw which allows even more nutrients to be absorbed by the body. When it comes to choosing seasoning for organic food recipes, fresh organic grown herbs are the key ingredients. Some organic food recipes may call for sea salt or freshly ground pepper as well.
Frozen foods have always meant convenience because they can be taken out of the freezer and prepared in a hurry by someone on the go. Frozen organic food means you get the convenience of frozen food with the goodness of organic ingredients. Parents who make homemade baby food are well aware of the advantages of frozen organic baby food. Organic foods have been found to have more nutrients in them than its conventional counterparts. Frozen organic foods are no different, they contain higher numbers of nutrients as well. Frozen organic food is coming of age. There are frozen organic pizzas, organic entrees, organic pot pies, a variety of frozen organic potatoes and organic vegetables. These frozen foods are generally flavored with herbs instead of being laden with salt or artificial flavors. Organic frozen foods taste better than their frozen counterparts and they contain no preservatives, pesticides, hormones or other toxic chemicals. Frozen organic food allows you to prepare an organic, nutritious meal in a fraction of the time it would take to make it from scratch. Since most conventional stores now carry organic products you can have the convenience of picking up your family's favorite organic dish at your local supermarket regardless of rather it is an organic breakfast food, a lunch selection, something for dinner or an organic dessert. When choosing frozen organic foods read the label to find out what the certification level is and what ingredients were used in the product. There are a number of rice and soy based organic frozen foods on the market as well.
The organic baby food market is one of the fastest growing areas of the baby food market in part because parents who want the best for their babies are switching over from using conventional baby food at alarming rates. Studies have shown that pesticides, hormones, antibiotics, and other toxins are in non-organic products, especially items such as baby food. These chemicals are concentrated in baby food because of the condensation of the fruits and vegetables. These toxic chemicals can cause problems to the developing immune system, the central nervous system and the hormonal systems of infants. Studies have also shown that these chemicals can be passed to a fetus from their mothers blood supply, however even if you didn't start out on the organic bandwagon it is not too late to begin eating organic foods or feeding your baby organic baby foods. Another advantage to organic baby foods is that they generally will not contain salt, preservatives, dairy products or sugars and can be gluten free. For parents who wish to make their own baby food, it is an easy process. You will need a blender, as well as organic fruits and vegetables of your choice. Even though they are organic, be sure to wash them well. Steam, bake or broil the food to the consistency that your baby prefers, then put it in a blender and give it a whirl. You can add a bit of lemon juice or water to add flavor and make it smoother. Strain the food to remove any remaining peels or chunks. Once this is done simply fill ice cube trays with the mixture and freeze. Once the food is frozen, place the cubes in individual jars, one per jar and put the jars in the freezer. When it is time to feed your baby, simply remove the jars and heat the food up.
The demand for organic food and environmentally friendly items is growing faster than any other segment of the food industry. This has paved the way for an increase in organic grocery stores and organic food markets. A few years ago the main place to purchase organic foods was at local health stores where the selection was usually limited. Today, because of the increased demand for naturally grown foods, even conventional grocery stores are stocking organic food and environmentally friendly items which makes them readily available to more consumers than ever before. Organic grocery stores are known for carrying a wide variety of organic and naturally grown items such as fresh fruits, vegetables, meats, bulk products and more. Organic grocery stores are also known for offering locally grown produce. The big difference between an organic grocery store and a traditional grocery store is that the majority, if not all, of the items in an organic grocery store are organic or natural. During the summer, organic food markets or farmers markets as they are commonly called, can be found in most cities. Purchasing fresh fruits and vegetables at an organic food market gives you the opportunity to meet the grower as well as buy items that are freshly picked and locally grown. Another way to purchase local organically grown items is to join a CSA which stands for Community Supported Agriculture. CSA's are popping up all over the country. In addition to fresh fruits and vegetables, some provide herbs, flowers, meat and eggs, all from their own local farm.
Health foods today are more than just good for you, they taste good too. Organic foods provide more nutrients than their conventional counterparts. The closer to the natural state the food is, the healthier it is. Raw nuts, fresh fruit and vegetables are all healthy foods that can satisfy your snack cravings as well as be a great addition to a meal. Instead of eating a slice of apple pie, eat a raw apple. When cooking vegetables the best way to prepare them is to steam them so they retain most of their nutritional value. Adding a variety of different colored vegetables is a good idea. For example the most common color of a carrot is orange but did you know there are red, white, purple and yellow carrots? Yellow carrots have been found to contain xanthophylls. Xanthophylls contribute to eye health. Because the yellow carrots contain more xanthophylls than their orange counterparts, a yellow carrot would be the better choice for eye health. Red carrots contain more lycopene which is linked to heart health and purple carrots contain anthocyanins which are powerful antibiotics that can guard the body against free radicals. When it comes to baked goods such as breads or pastas, choose ones made with organic whole grains. Whole grains are much healthier than processed grains. For protein choose fish, chicken or lean meat. When preparing meat bake it at a moderate temperature instead of frying it. Fresh meat and seafood is healthier than processed meats which contain saturated fat and nitrates.
An essential part of good health is eating a balanced diet rich in fruits and vegetables. Organic fruits and vegetables are grown without the use of pesticides or other harmful chemical additives. In various studies, organic foods have shown higher nutritional values making them a better choice for dietary health. Organic foods are made the way nature intended and have not been genetically engineered or modified. Another advantage of organic foods is that they have not been irradiated like their conventional counterparts. Radiation is used to give fruits and vegetables a longer shelf life. Since most organic farms are smaller in scale than conventional farms, it is easier to find locally grown produce. Many grocery stores now stock local fruits and vegetables. These can usually be identified by a sign stating that is was locally grown. Another place to find organic fruits and vegetables that have been grown locally is a farmers market. If your town doesn't already have one, look for one in a neighboring town. Produce that has been produced locally helps sustain the local economy. Locally grown fruits and vegetables are fresher which makes them taste better and are picked when they ripen instead of being picked ahead of time. Organic foods that are locally grown are good for the environment too. Instead of being put on a truck and shipped across the country, they are transported a short distance which saves on greenhouse gas emissions. While the selection may not be as great as the conventional counterparts since most organic fresh fruits and vegetables are available by season, your body will adjust and become more in tune with each season as time passes.
|Sheri Ann Richerson|