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The Health Risks of Eating Conventional Potatoes

Whenever I think about a lot of the food that I ate growing up, it isn’t overly pleasant. It was the standard American diet with all of the processed, fast food that most of the country still consumes today.

Fortunately, my childhood took place before the emergence of GMOs (mid-90s) and growth hormone milk (late 80s), so I escaped some of the really bad things when my body was in its crucial stage of development.

One food that I fondly remember eating, and loving, at family dinners was potatoes. And it wasn’t just the insides of the potatoes. I particularly loved eating the skins. Yet, little did I or my parents know just how toxic they were.

When many people think of the most important foods to be eating organic, potatoes do not immediately come to mind as quickly as apples, grapes, or spinach do. But they should and here’s why.

THE PROBLEMS WITH CONVENTIONAL POTATOES

1) According to the USDA’s Pesticide Data Program, 35 different pesticides have been found on conventional potatoes.

And out of these 35:

– 6 are known or probably carcinogens

– 12 are suspected hormone disruptors

– 7 are neurotoxins

– 6 are developmental or reproductive toxins

The chemical that is found on 76% of all conventional potatoes is chlorpropham, an herbicide that is used to stop the growth of weeds and to inhibit potato sprouting.

Not only is this chemical toxic to honey bees, but according to the Extension Toxicology Network, chronic exposure of laboratory animals to chlorpropham has caused “retarded growth, increased liver, kidney and spleen weights, congestion of the spleen, and death.”

2) As a root vegetable, potatoes absorb all of the pesticides, herbicides, and insecticides that are sprayed above the ground and then eventually make their way into the soil.

With potatoes, however, the chemical treatment is quite extensive.

During growing season – They get treated with fungicides

Before harvesting – They get sprayed with herbicides to kill off the fibrous vines

After being dug up – They get sprayed again to prevent them from sprouting

3) Quite often, the most important information about a food is what growers or “insiders” have to say about it.

Jeff Moyer, CEO at the Rodale Institute and former chair of the National Organic Standards Board, has been quoted as saying “I’ve talked with potato growers who say point-blank they would never eat the potatoes they sell. They have separate plots where they grow potatoes for themselves without all the chemicals.”

ORGANIC POTATOES ARE THE ANSWER

Needless to say, when I eat potatoes, I only eat organic potatoes because organic production does not allow for the use of all of these toxic chemicals.

Please share this post with your friends and family, so they can be purchasing the safest potatoes possible.

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Living Maxwell

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What You Can’t See May Be Greatly Impacting Your Family’s Health

(This is a sponsored post from my partners at Intellipure. I have been using the company’s air filtration machines for well over a decade — many years before I started Living Maxwell.)

After having eaten close to 100% organic since 2001, I have come to realize one thing — food is only one part of the equation.

While I maintain that it is still a very important piece of the puzzle, it is certainly not the only one when it comes to good health. I would put your emotional well-being, the quality of water that you drink, the EMFs that you are exposed to and the air that you breathe all in the same conversation when it comes to optimizing personal wellness.

Yet, arguably, clean air may be the most important thing to address when it comes to your health. Why?

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A message from Tradin Organic

How Tradin Organic is Helping Coconut Farmers in The Philippines

For more than a decade, Tradin Organic has been working with local partners in The Philippines to bring a diversified range of organic products to the market, such as coconut oil, tropical fruits and even cocoa.

The company is helping to support local farmers by assisting them with technical support and organic certification, in addition to paying Fairtrade premium on top of the organic premium.

Learn more.

Living Maxwell

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Another Reason to Eat Organic – Toxic Flame Retardants Found in Conventional Food

I almost fell over in my chair the other day when I read this one in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives.

In nearly half of the samples tested, researchers found traces of hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD) in peanut butter, cold cuts, turkey, beef, and other fatty foods.

So what is HBCD exactly?

It is a flame retardant commonly used in the foam insulation of building walls, upholstered furniture, automobile interior textiles, car cushions and electronic equipment.

How toxic is it and who is concerned about it?

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Living Maxwell

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Why Organic is a MUST for Women — Pesticides Linked to Lower Chance of Pregnancy and Higher Risk of Pregnancy Loss

Each year when the Environmental Working Group (EWG) releases its “Dirty Dozen”  – the 12 most pesticide-laden fruits and vegetables that people should avoid – the major pesticide companies and their front groups launch a major PR campaign demanding that EWG stop publishing these annual lists, insisting that chemicals are not harmful.

The organic industry and health advocates completely scoff at these ridiculous claims. Furthermore, the State of California has declared that glyphosate, the most widely used chemical in the world and one that is routinely sprayed on our food supply, causes cancer.

And now we have a new report out of Harvard which reinforces the notion that pesticides can cause real harm, particularly for women.

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livingmaxwell: a guide to organic food & drink