Are Organic Foods Better for Your Heart Than Conventional Counterparts?
There has been a significant debate for years over the health benefits of organic foods. Organic means non-genetically modified, pesticide-free, natural foods. You can liken them to foods grown and raised the way our grandparents or great-grandparents would’ve been accustomed. Often organic foods are significantly more expensive than those grown conventionally because they are prone to many of the farming risks that conventional foods have been modified or sprayed to avoid.
Proponents say that organic foods help us avoid chemical toxicity and question whether genetic modification may affect long-term health. On the other hand, those who believe in modern, conventional farming point out that there’s no conclusive evidence that organic food is better than conventional. Further, conventional farming methods have made food more available worldwide.
We are not looking to weigh whether organic food or its conventional counterparts are better or worse in this blog. That is something that you and your financial situation will have to balance. However, more importantly, we must address one of the biggest causes of heart disease in modern-day society: metabolic issues. About 2/3 of Americans are overweight, and about a third of us suffer from obesity. This is mainly due to improper relationships with food, including excessive portion sizes, processed foods, and the unavailability of fresh foods in many underserved communities.
As such, we must change the perception of a proper meal. If we were to reduce the rate of excess weight and obesity in this country, even by a small amount, tens of thousands of lives would be prolonged or saved each year. The rates of heart disease would most certainly go down, as would many forms of cancer, let alone a myriad of lifestyle disorders.
How Can We Go About Improving Our Heart Health Through a Better Diet?
First, we must transition back to whole foods and healthier meals. This includes lean proteins, complex carbs, unsaturated fats instead of red meat, empty carbs and sugars, and saturated fats. This also means that we should eat about half, or even less, of what a typical restaurant will serve us. Sodas, desserts, and fried and processed foods should be an occasional indulgence rather than a common occurrence.
Of course, the road to better heart health is not just diet. Exercise, proper sleep habits, and stress management also contribute to better heart and general health. There’s plenty we already know we should do to become healthier. Now’s a great time to start.
The Bottom Line
If organic food is within your reach, it is more likely to be unprocessed and arrive in a more natural form. This is critical to eating better. However, before deciding whether organic or conventional food is your best bet, analyze your overall eating and dietary habits to ensure you get enough of the good stuff and avoid most of the bad.
Here at our office, we emphasize proper diet and exercise when discussing preventative heart health or even managing existing cardiovascular concerns. Of course, we also believe in treating heart issues at their earliest appearance. So, we encourage anyone who believes they have a cardiovascular problem to get screened by a cardiologist to understand more about their condition.