When people talk about organic food, we mostly focus on the importance of eating food that is free of synthetic chemicals, genetically-modified ingredients and artificial growth hormones.
Yet, what we also need to be mentioning is that conventionally-grown food means that our soil is getting sprayed with an astronomical amount of toxic pesticides, which ends up polluting our public water supply.
According to the EPA, we use about 1.1 billion pounds of chemicals per year, 80% of which are used for agricultural purposes.
And what impact has this had on the quality of our public water supply?
With information collected by the USDA Data Pesticide Program, The Pesticide Action Network reports that 59 different pesticide residues have been found in our water supply including:
– 9 known or probable carcinogens
– 20 suspected hormone disruptors
– 7 neurotoxins
– 14 developmental or reproductive toxins
THE BIGGEST CULPRIT?
Not surprisingly, the most widely-found chemical, Atrazine – an herbicide, showed up 94% of the time.
Europeans are so afraid of the effects of Atrazine that they have banned it completely.
Yet, in the U.S., our politicians and regulators have somehow deemed it safe.
As mentioned in the fantastic water documentary that I wrote about the other day, Flow, 80 million pounds of Atrazine are used each year.
And the health effects of Atrazine?
– The Pesticide Action Network reports that it has been linked to endocrine disruption, reproductive problems, and cancer.
– The President’s Cancer Panel reported that (PDF) Atrazine “has been shown to affect mammary gland development in animal studies with some findings suggesting multigenerational effects.”
– Professor Tyrone Hayes, Endocrinologist at the University of California, reported from his research that frogs exposed to Atrazine were turning into hermaphrodites.
Syngenta, the world’s largest chemical manufacturer and maker of Atrazine, tried to convince Professor Hayes not to publish the results from his research but he did not give in to their pressure.
Below is a MUST-WATCH video about Atrazine by The Huffington Post Investigative Fund.
WHAT CAN WE DO?
Here are a few important things that we can do:
– Continue to support and eat organic food. By consuming organic food, we are keeping toxic chemicals out of our bodies AND our public water supply.
As Joel Salatin, one of the stars of the movie Food, Inc., told me, we get to vote with our dollars every single day.
– Make sure our kids are getting organic food. Researchers from Harvard have said that children who are exposed to above-average levels of pesticides will be twice as likely to suffer from ADHD.
– Read the great report by The New York Times on the abysmal state of our public water supply.
– Put pressure on government representatives to provide us clean drinking water.
Every single one us drinks water and relies on it to live. Why shouldn’t we be doing everything we can to have the cleanest drinking water possible for ourselves and our families? Isn’t our health worth it?
I sincerely thank you for supporting organic food.