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Harmful chemicals are all around us -- in our bodies, in our environment and in our food. Maybe you can tolerate a little bit of pesticide, but, like anything else, you can overdo it. Experts say anything you eat in abundance should be organic in order to avoid overexposure to certain chemicals. While a little bit of pesticide residue in your favorite tortilla chips may be OK, if you eat a bag of them a day, you may be flirting with toxic buildup (not to mention obesity). Same with peanut butter, rib eye steaks, corn and so on. It's especially important to remember this rule for babies and children because their small body size means toxins can accumulate quickly.
Related HowStuffWorks Articles
- Consumer Reports. "Better for Baby? Our analysis finds organic food is safer for children." January 2006. (Feb. 17, 2009). http://www.ConsumerReports.org
- Curl, Cynthia L. et al. "Organophosphorus Pesticide Exposure of Urban and Suburban Preschool Children with Organic and Conventional Diets." Environmental Health Perspectives. Vol. 111, no. 3, Page 377-382. March 2003. (Feb. 17, 2009). http://www.ehponline.org
- Cornell University Sprecher Institute for Comparative Cancer Research. "Consumer Concern About Hormones in Food." June 2000. (Feb. 17, 2009). http://www.envirocancer.cornell.edu/Factsheet/Diet/fs37.hormones.cfm
- Environmental Working Group. "Shopper's Guide to Pesticides in Produce." Oct. 4, 2006. (Feb. 17, 2009). http.//www.foodnews.org/
- Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research. "Organic foods? Are they safer? More nutritious?" Dec. 20, 2008. (Feb. 17, 2009). http://www.mayoclinci.com/health/organic-food/NU00255
- Skrzycki, Cindy. "USDA Trying to Put Loophole in Organic Dairy Rules Out to Pasture." The Washington Post. Nov. 4, 2008. (Feb. 17, 2009). http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/11/03/AR2008110303000.html
If you're thinking of giving up meat, but can't stand the thought of never eating seafood again, you might want to consider the pescatarian diet.