Health debate continues between organic vs. conventional food

9/4/2012

The debate over whether organic food is better than non-organic continues in the latest U.S. study.

Researchers from Stanford University and the Veteran Affairs Palo Alto Health Care reviewed more than 200 studies that compared either the health of people who ate organic or conventional foods, specifically, nutrient and contaminant levels in the foods themselves, said a Reuters article.

The foods included organic and non-organic fruits, vegetables, grains, meat, poultry eggs and milk.

However, many of the studies used, though, didn't specify their standards for what constituted "organic" food.

Researchers found there was no difference in the amount of vitamins in plant or animal products produced organically and conventionally - and the only nutrient difference was slightly more phosphorous in the organic products, reported Reuters.

It was also noted that it was uncommon for either organic or conventional foods to exceed the allowable limits for pesticides, so it was not clear whether a difference in residues would have an effect on health.

But others said it was premature to say organic foods aren't any healthier than non-organic versions and that more research is needed to fully understand the health and safety differences between organic and conventional foods.

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