Should I buy Organic?

I have this dilemma everytime I go to the grocery store to buy food for my family. I can't believe how expensive organic food is! I read an article that helped me understand the cost issue a little better. The article explained that it is more expensive to farm organically and that the crop yields are smaller raising the end price. While I understand this, I get so angry when I stand in the produce section of Whole Foods trying to justify paying $2.99 a pound for apples or pears.

There are pros and cons on each side of the organic food argument. The most compelling argument for me is the pesticide issue. I understand that farmers use pesticides on produce to control insects, mold and disease, but I have also read that the level of pesticide absorption is 4 times higher with babies than with the average adult. I have also read that nitrates found in conventional soil is dangerous for babies because it can cause an unusual form of anemia because they can't excrete the nitrates as effeciently as adults. On the other side, some argue that research has shown that organic produce isn't any safer than conventional. I'm not sure what "safer" means, but I would rather air on the side of safety. I want my child to have the healthiest start possible. I don't like the idea of unknown and unnecessary substances floating around in his young little body.

SO, I have set myself out to find the cheapest way to provide the healthiest food for my child. Here's what I do...when I am ready to introduce a new food I explore the different options (jarred, buying fresh or frozen) and I make the decision from there. Some fruits and veggies are readily available at reasonable prices to buy fresh (carrots & apples) Some foods have a very low rating for pesticides and are not reasonably priced for organic varieties, so I buy conventionally (banana, avocados, sweet potatoes, butternut squash). Others are either not widely available or are too expensive and I buy frozen (peas and peas). And, still others are just not available fresh all year long or are too expensive to justify buying fresh and I make a choice to buy organic jarred (apricots, plums, prunes, pears).

But, my advice is to not drive yourself crazy about this. Make the best choices you can for the food you are introducing. Please learn a lesson from me about this. I have stood in the middle of the grocery store several times wandering from the frozen food section to the produce section to the baby food aisle breaking out into a sweet and anxiously deliberating what decision to make. Do what feels right for you and trust your instincts.

To help you decide where you are on the organic debate, check out these websites:




And, I am interested to hear if you have found other sources that are helpful.

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