(NaturalHealth365) This story has been updated – as of Apr. 23, 2015.
Most health conscious consumers understand the benefits of organic food far outweigh the cost factor. Conventionally grown and processed foods are filled with toxic pesticides – which dramatically increase your risk for allergies; attention deficit disorder (ADD) plus many other chronic health problems. Yet, the entire organic food industry is under attack by multi-national (junk) food producers; the “lame-stream” media and corporately-controlled mad (GMO) scientists.
Recently, television personality Dr. Mehmet Oz suggested that there is no good reason to buy organic food. But, this is the same “health” doctor that told millions of viewers to eat organic food just a few months ago. Why was there a change of heart?
Editor’s update: (10/20/14) Since the original publication of this article – Dec. 2, 2012, the videos of the Dr. Oz show (revealing his position) have been removed because they are no longer available through Youtube. (I wonder why?) Having said that, we would love to hear what Dr. Oz thinks about organic foods – in his own words, sometime soon.
In a shocking editorial piece in TIME Magazine, Dr. Oz has completely changed his opinion – suggesting that eating organic food is “elitist” and only for about 1 percent of the population. He says it’s good for you but not “democratic”. Since when has eating healthy food become such a political issue?
Is the corporate agenda of the biotech industry behind this story? By harping on the idea that there is no nutritional difference between organic and non-organic food – it completely avoids the issue of toxic chemicals in our food supply. Personally speaking, I think it’s a shame if any healthcare professional suggests that toxic food is safe to eat.
We would LOVE Dr. Oz to create an entire show about the benefits of organic food.
In my opinion, Dr. Oz ought to use his influence in the media to increase the popularity of organic food. The only way we can create a positive change in our food supply is by increasing awareness – about the dangers of processed foods – and vote with our purchasing dollars.
Share this story with as many of your friends and family as possible. Organic food is under attack – and it’s up to us to help save humanity from the corporate giants that care little about us and poison the planet for sheer profit.
The original TIME cover story was published on 12/3/2012 and is entitled “What to Eat Now” by Dr. Mehmet Oz. It’s available at: http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,2129811,00.html
The full story is available to Time subscribers only. Here are some excerpts from the article (below), with Cornucopia’s responses:
Dr. Oz: “Nutritionally speaking, there is little difference between the farmer’s-market bounty and the humble brick from the freezer case.”
Cornucopia response: Dr. Oz compares conventional and organic foods throughout the article by focusing exclusively on the differences between a handful of nutrients. This is exactly what the agrochemical and conventional farming industries, and their front group, the Alliance for Food and Farming, would like the American public to focus on. Just two months ago, Dr. Oz told the viewers of his syndicated television show to buy organic vegetables to avoid pesticide residues. Now, in his copywritten Time story, the word “pesticide” or “agricultural chemical” is never mentioned.
Dr. Oz: “Dispelling these myths — that boutique foods are good, supermarket foods are suspect and you have to spend a lot to eat well — is critical to improving our nation’s health. Organic food is great, it’s just not very democratic.”
Cornucopia response: What can be more democratic than consumers voting with their food dollars to support organic farmers who protect our environment and our health by eschewing harmful and polluting agrochemicals?
Even if there were no direct benefit to our families (plenty of published scientific research indicates there is), when we choose organic food we are protecting farmers and farmworkers from exposure to toxic chemicals. Many farmers, farmworkers and their children have elevated levels of certain cancers and chronic diseases.
Dr. Oz: “The rise of foodie culture over the past decade has venerated all things small-batch, local-farm and organic — all with premium price tags. But let’s be clear: you don’t need to eat like the 1% to eat healthily.”
Cornucopia response: Organic foods are not for the “1%.” Organic foods are for everybody, and are accessible and affordable to most families who prioritize their expenses. Many organic consumers forgo other “luxuries,” whether it be iPhones, vacations, new cars — all of which are advertised in the same Time magazine where Dr. Oz’s article appears — in order to be able to afford organic foods to protect their family’s health. These decisions should be applauded, not turned into a character flaw.
Dr. Oz: “After several years of research and experience, I have come to an encouraging conclusion: the American food supply is abundant, nutritionally sound, affordable and, with a few simple considerations, comparable to the most elite organic diets. Save the cash; the 99% diet can be good for you.”
Cornucopia response: Dr. Oz’s research apparently missed the countless studies showing that organic foods are nutritionally superior, lower in pesticide residues, lower in antibiotic-resistant pathogen contamination, etc. In addition to being published in peer-reviewed journals, testing by independent sources such as Consumer Reports (Consumer Union) and government agencies such as the USDA corroborate these findings.
Dr. Oz: “I consider it a public-health service to the consumer who has to feed a family of five or the person who wants to make all the right choices and instead is alienated and dejected because the marketing of healthy foods too often blurs into elitism, with all the expense and culinary affectation that implies.”
Cornucopia response: The added expense of buying organic foods is an investment in health. In the interest of public health, Dr. Oz should have mentioned the pesticides, hormones, antibiotics, synthetic preservatives, artificial dyes and sweeteners, and other harmful inputs used in conventional farming and food production. Comparing nutrients is just one aspect of a cost-benefit analysis. Dr. Oz owes his loyal fans, who respect his judgment, a more thoughtful and nuanced analysis.
Dr. Oz: “There’s no question that free-range chickens and grass-fed, pasture-dwelling cows lead happier — if not appreciably longer — lives than animals raised on factory farms. They are also kept free of hormones and antibiotics and are less likely to carry communicable bacteria like E. coli, which are common on crowded feedlots. If these things are important to you and you have the money to spend, then by all means opt for pricier organic meats.”
Cornucopia response: Yes, Dr. Oz, avoiding hormones and antibiotics is important to us, and it should be to you, too.
However, just because a package says “free range” or “grass-fed” does not mean it is certified organic, and therefore is not certified to be produced without some of the most dangerous and objectionable drugs. Concerned consumers should go out of their way to seek out the organic seal.
Dr. Oz: “But for the most part, it’s O.K. to skip the meat boutiques and the high-end butchers. Nutritionally, there is not much difference between, say, grass-fed beef and the feedlot variety.”
Cornucopia response: Dr. Oz’s statement is not backed by scientific data, which consistently shows lower levels of cholesterol and saturated fat and higher levels of beneficial omega-3 fats and vitamins in grass-fed beef compared with feedlot beef.
Dr. Oz: “Let’s also take a moment to celebrate the tuna-salad sandwich, which is to lunch what the ’57 Chevy is to cars–basic and brilliant.”
Cornucopia response: It is unconscionable that Dr. Oz touts the nutritional benefits of canned tuna, without mentioning the FDA and EPA warnings concerning methylmercury contamination. The FDA and EPA recommend that women who may become pregnant, pregnant women, nursing mothers and young children limit their consumption of canned light tuna to no more than 12 ounces per week, and their consumption of canned albacore tuna to no more than 6 ounces per week.
Dr. Oz: “Preserves and jams without added sugar can be great sources of dietary fiber, vitamin A, vitamin C and potassium.”
Cornucopia response: Preserves and jams without added sugar often contain added artificial sweeteners, such as aspartame, which has been linked in studies to cancer and neurological damage. Aspartame and other artificial sweeteners are banned in organic products.
Dr. Oz: “We know more about the connection between food and health than ever before — down to the molecular level, actually. This has provided us the curious luxury of being fussy, even snooty, about what we eat, considering some foods, well, below our station. That’s silly. Food isn’t about cachet. It’s about nourishment, pleasure and the profound well-being that comes from the way meals draw us together.”
Cornucopia response: Dr. Oz spends the entire article attempting to convince the American public that there are few, if any, differences between conventional and organic foods. Yet in his closing paragraphs he tacitly acknowledges that we “know more about … food and health than ever before – down to the molecular level.” This contradicts his earlier statements that there are no differences.
Most people who buy organic foods do so not because they are “snooty,” as Dr. Oz suggests, but because they seek to protect themselves and their families from the widely recognized harmful effects of pesticides and other agrichemicals.
About the author: Jonathan Landsman is the managing director of NaturalHealth365.com and host of the NaturalNews Talk Hour – a free, weekly health show sponsored by NaturalHealth365.com. Jonathan is helping millions of people worldwide create health and physical fitness through a variety of educational and entertaining articles, teleconference calls, live shows and special events.
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