September 16 – 24 is National Organic Week Australia, which aims to promote the benefits of living an organic lifestyle, particularly in regards to food. To celebrate, MiNDFOOD explores the different ways you can incorporate organic products into your lifestyle – and why it will do you good.
An organic diet has benefits for both personal health and the environment. Organic foods are grown and harvested in accordance with standards set by certification organisations like AsureQuality, BioGro and Ceres. General standards require all food to be prepared and processed without any chemicals – meaning fertilisers, preservatives and pesticides are all chemical-free.
Because organic produce only contains traces of natural fertilisers, such as manure, the risk of consuming chemicals through food is eliminated. This is not only safer for your body, but also safer for the farmers handling the produce. Animal welfare is part and parcel with the production of organic meat and milk, too. Animals are not injected with hormones or chemicals, meaning the produce cannot contain traces of artificial substances. The animals are also given more humane, free-range lifestyles than non-organic animals.
Additionally, organic food protects the environment through minimal air, water and soil pollution. “As consumers, you want food you can recognise and trust,” says Costa Georgiadis, Ambassador of National Organic Week Australia. “Buying organic products supports food safety, health, good nutrition and the environment.”
Read more about the benefits of organic food.
What you put on our skin should be treated with as much importance as what you put into your body. Just as eating non-organic food puts you at risk of ingesting harmful toxins, using non-organic beauty products puts your body at risk of absorbing these same chemicals.
Organic skincare and makeup is free of nasty chemicals, from formaldehyde to parabens. Plant extracts and oils used in organic beauty products are also purer than those in non-organic products, because they are not contaminated by pesticides or herbicides.
Buying organic skincare products also helps the environment. The lack of chemicals means there is no chance of chemical waste ending up in waterways. Many organic products also use biodegradable packaging, so check when buying to see how you can reduce plastic pollution.
Learn how to recognise reputable organic cosmetic products.
For a healthier, safer home and family, make organic household products a staple on your shopping list. Non-organic cleaning products contain noxious chemicals, including phosphates, ammonia, chlorine bleach and APEs. Exposure to these chemicals can damage the eyes and skin, as well as effect breathing. Comparatively, organic cleaning products rely on natural ingredients such as baking soda, vinegar, lemon juice and essential oils.
“There is ample scientific evidence of potentially harmful compounds in many household cleaning products and that it’s prudent to limit our exposure,” says professor of environmental health at the University of British Columbia Susan Kennedy.
Because natural, organic cleaning products are non-toxic, they do not cause air or water pollution. Non-organic cleaning products create chemical waste which are released into the air and waterways, harming plantlife and animals.
National Organic Week Australia runs from Saturday 16 – Sunday 24 September 2017. Visit organicweek.net for more information.