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8 Reasons Why We Should Go for Organic Food

8 Reasons Why We Should Go for Organic Food

We are what we eat, as the old saying goes. Yet sometimes it is easy to forget that memorable adage when our senses are being constantly assaulted with a bombardment of advertizing related to food choices, many of which are not the best ones for us. How can we be more conscious then, not only of what food we put into our bodies, but also of the greater impact that food has on both our own health, as well as the health of our communities and the planet as a whole? Being informed about these choices empowers us to decide what is right for us when it comes to making conscious choices about food.

Here are eight reasons why we should go for organic food:

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1. Eating organic helps protect the supply of clean drinking water.

Since organic farmers do not use pesticides, they are not contributing to pesticide contamination of our nation’s groundwater and aquifers, which is an important issue to consider when doing your food shopping. Even if you don’t live near a farm, it is important to realize that many pesticides used on farms are carried by water to other areas. If we are what we eat, then we are also what we drink. So, supporting organic farms not only helps us avoid putting pesticides into our bodies through our food, but also lessens the level of pesticides we may be consuming through our water.

2. Eating organic may help lower the chances of neurological disorders such as autism.

Although the real cause of autism is still under debate in the scientific community, there are some findings that the ingredient Glufosinate ammonium (GLA) which exists in many herbicides causes neurological damage and may contribute to the rise of autism.

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3. Eating organic contributes to a more healthy work environment for farm workers.

One of the more shadowy effects of eating food that has been grown with pesticides is the impact that it has on those workers on farms where the crops are sprayed with pesticides. The level of harm can be twofold, both in the act of harvesting the crop as well as in the handling and spraying of the pesticides used on the crops. There are many reports that address this issue. So, the next time you buy an organic fruit or vegetable know that you are supporting a healthier and more sustainable vision not only for yourself, but also for farm workers.

4. Eating organic helps us create a more healthy environment for the world’s bee population.

Bees are the primary pollinators of the world’s crops, and yet recent scientific studies show a harmful relationship between some neonicotinoid pesticides and bee brain functions. This becomes even more exacerbated when other pesticides are added, contributing to an already major decline in the world’s bee population, as told in a study, published in March 2013 about bees and neonicotinoid pesticides.

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5. Eating organic helps us honor both the birds and the bees.

We often use the term “the birds and the bees” when it comes to human reproduction, and this term holds true as well for the negative impact of neonicotinoid pesticides. Not only do they harm the bee population but also the bird population, if not the entire food chain. According to one researcher even a corn kernel coated with a neonicotinoid can kill a song bird. By eating organic, you are helping liberate the larger ecosystem from our dependance on toxic agricultural practices that are lethal to other life forms.

6. Eating organic means less exposure to pesticides linked to aggressive prostate cancer.

A report by Agricultural Health Study links exposure to certain pesticides with aggressive prostate cancer. Prostate cancer is the most common cancer men suffer from. So please be careful with what you eat.

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7. Eating organic helps protect our oceans by reducing nonpoint source pollution.

Much of the runoff that happens during large rainstorms eventually brings pesticides and chemical fertilizers into the world’s oceans and seas. This type of pollution is part of a larger problem called nonpoint source pollution. Since organic farming practices refrain from the use of both pesticides and chemical fertilizers, you are supporting healthier oceans when you shop organic.

8. Eating organic leads to even more people eating organic.

By eating organic you are voting with your buying power, voting for more sustainable farming practices, voting for cleaner water, voting for protecting the fabric of life that includes the birds, the bees and all living things. In the long run more organic foods will be available. As that message grows, it opens doors for more local health food stores that include organic choices, and also serves as a reminder for larger supermarkets and chain stores to do so as well. Eating organic is presently a privilege not available to all communities. Typically, the organic choices are more readily offered to those who live in more affluent neighborhoods, and can be challenging for all people to have access to. So, if you want to help others have access to organic food, send that message to the food industry by buying more organic food. Think of each purchase as a vote for all to have access to food that is safe and pesticide free.

Featured photo credit: Dale Janzen via flickr.com

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Last Updated on October 15, 2018

Why Am I So Tired? 10 Reasons You’re Extremely Tired And How to Fix It

Why Am I So Tired? 10 Reasons You’re Extremely Tired And How to Fix It

“Why am I so tired?” is a question that people ask themselves pretty frequently. Everyone gets tired at one point or another, particularly after something like an illness, a long night up with a sick child, or a busy week at work. When tiredness is persistent, however — when you feel tired as soon as you wake up in morning or when sleep doesn’t seem to help, no matter how much rest you get— it may often indicate a deeper, underlying problem.

While there are a lot of possible reasons for tiredness, here’re some of the most common causes of fatigue:

1. Dehydration

If you want to boost your energy levels, first check whether you are dehydrated. The human brain is 85% water, and needs to maintain this level in order to perform its essential functions.

If you fail to drink enough water, the brain extracts fluids from your blood to compensate for the deficit. As a result, the oxygen levels in your blood drop, reducing the amount of energising oxygen available to your organs and tissues. Fatigue and sleepiness set in rapidly, leaving you more vulnerable to the 2 pm post-lunch crash that many of us experience.

You cannot cure this crash with caffeine – the only long-term, effective solution is to drink hydrating fluids throughout the day.

2. Lack Of Exercise

A workout will surely leave you feeling even more tired, right? Wrong! As counterintuitive as it may sound, physical activities have an energizing effect. Moving your body releases endorphins, increases your heart rate, and boosts your concentration.

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Try to fit in at least 30 minutes of medium-intensity exercise every day. It’s easiest if you can make this part of our everyday routine, either as soon as you wake up or right after work.

3. A Poor Diet

The food you eat has a direct impact on sleep quality and the amount of rest you get every night. For maximum energy, stick to protein, slow-release carbohydrates, and a moderate amount of healthy (unsaturated) fats. The majority of your food should be plant-based, high in fiber, and low in sugar. These choices will prevent blood sugar fluctuations, which can leave you feeling exhausted.

An easy way to make sure you stick to a good diet is through meal preparation. It’s easy to just get take-out when you’re tired after work, but if you have a meal ready for you in the fridge, you’ll be less tempted by pizza or cheese.

Find out more about healthy meal prep here: 10 Meal Planning Apps You Need To Have To Get Healthier Easily

4. Skipping Breakfast

Physician Dr. Nerina Ramlakhan advises that eating breakfast is key to maintaining a good level of energy throughout the day. When you eat breakfast, you are sending calming signals to the areas of the brain responsible for avoiding danger, along with those that instruct the body to conserve as much energy as possible.

Ingesting food signals to your brain that there is enough food available to ensure our survival. This encourages it to stay relaxed, which in turn, promotes restful sleep.

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Some great ideas for a healthy, filling, and make-ahead breakfasts include overnight oats, smoothies, and freezer-friendly breakfast burritos.

Or if meal-prepping isn’t your think, stock up on easy but healthy breakfast foods like multigrain cereal, yogurt, and fruit: 20 Healthy Breakfast Choices That Will Save You Time

5. Poor Quality Of Sleep

We all know that it’s important to wind down a couple of hours before bed. But did you know that it’s what you do throughout the day that promotes good-quality sleep? It’s not just about the number of hours you sleep, but how restful and deep that sleep is.

TO feel rested, try to regulate your everyday routine to make your sleep deeper and better. Get up at a regular time in the morning to ensure that you get regular sunlight.

Eat nutritious foods in moderate amounts, and make sure you stay hydrated. Go to bed at the same time. And before bedtime, avoid screens that can give off harmful blue light and also keep you stimulated when you need to prepare for a restful night.

Read more about how to develop a routine that will get you better sleep: Poor Sleep Quality Comes from All the Things You Do Since Morning

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6. Sleep Apnea (A Person’s Airways Get Blocked off While They Are Asleep)

Sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder where a person’s airways get blocked off while they are asleep, causing their oxygen levels to drop while they are asleep. This often causes people to stop breathing at night and then to jerk themselves awake (this can happen over 30 times an hour).

Because of this, people with sleep apnea can feel short of breath and have low energy levels. Mouthpieces and other devices to aid in breathing as well as the use of a special breathing machine to keep oxygen levels in a safe zone.

If you feel tired all the time and think you might have sleep apnea, consulting with a doctor is important. Do a sleep study, as this can often reveal if there is an underlying problem causing your tiredness — and once a diagnosis is made, treatment to help you get your energy back begins.

7. Depression

Depression is the most common mental health disorder in the United States (and in many other countries of the world as well). It is marked by persistent feelings of sadness or unhappiness but has physical symptoms, too. Apart from fatigue, people may also experience changes in sleeping and eating habits and difficulty concentrating.

Treatment can often center on anti-depressants, counselling and lifestyle changes like stress management to help manage this condition. You can take a look at these 15 Ways To Overcome Depression And Sadness.

Many people also benefit from activities like yoga and meditation, which help regulate both the body and mind.

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8. Hypothyroidism

If a person has hypothyroidism, their thyroid gland does not produce adequate levels of these important hormones— and the result can be a persistent and unrelenting fatigue, even if someone is getting enough sleep. Other common symptoms of this disorder include mood swings, weight gain and feeling cold all the time.

Fortunately, simple blood work can reveal if there is a problem and it can be treated with artificial thyroid hormone pills like Synthroid. Check here for signs of having a thyroid problem. If you suspect that you might have hypothyroidism, talk to your doctor.

9. Anemia

People with anemia are not able to make enough red blood cells to transport oxygen throughout the their bodies. This is often due to a lack of nutrients like iron or B-12 and can be caused by problems such as heavy periods, bleeding in the digestive tract or pregnancy (due to the increased demands of the growing baby).

However, in most cases, this can be resolved with treatments like changes in diet, iron supplements or B-12 shots.

While here are some drinks you can try to relieve symptoms of Anemia, it’s best to do a blood test and consult your doctor in case of any hidden medical conditions.

10. Cancer

While you shouldn’t be freaking out about cancer just because you are tired, it is a fact that fatigue is one of the symptoms of cancer. Other common symptoms can include unexplained weight loss and the presence of palpable lumps or growths. This disease is marked by the abnormal and uncontrolled growth of cells that can do damage to surround tissues and possibly spread to other parts of the body.

Diagnosis is usually by biopsy and treatment often focusses on radiation, chemotherapy or surgery— and generally when a diagnosis is made early, the outcomes for the patient are better.

Featured photo credit: Lily Banse via unsplash.com

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