Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Dabbling in the organic

Well my adventurous spirit is officially gone for the week. We played it safe with the tilapia last night and breaded/baked it. (And Stephen, being a wonderful husband, ate it anyway...) I had grand ideas about this mango salsa topping for it, but I went to my freezer and discovered I must have already eaten all the mango in my sleep. It was pretty bland because I definitely didn't season it enough, but it was edible and didn't taste terrible (it really didn't taste like much of anything...Anne, I wish I would have read your suggestion sooner!!) Tonight's dinner was also extremely pathetic - thyme and rosemary chicken with boxed potatoes and canned green beans. Big fail. (I'm telling myself that we needed to use up that nasty stuff so we can move on to the fresh produce...)

But enough on dinner, back to Monday's shopping trip. Along with buying adventurous cuts of meat (wow...did I just call my cuts of meat adventurous?? I really need to try new things more often...) I also bought organic when the option was available. I never thought I would care about buying organic, but it's amazing what happens to you when you become a parent!! I've read a lot of anti-organic articles citing that organic produce is no more nutritious than regular produce and that pesticides stay on the outside of many fruits and veggies so as long as you're not eating the skin, you don't need to buy organic...but the fact is, even if the levels of pesticides you consume are well below the human tolerance threshold, you are still consuming them. And while that might be fine for me and you, it makes me nervous to feed them to my sweet baby girl :) (As my brother pointed out to me earlier, you also have to consider the environmental benefits of organic farming...)

The real kicker for me was the milk. While picking up Stephen's half gallon, I noted organic milk in the case. Since almost everything else in my cart was organic, I said hey - why not? I've heard great things from people who drink organic milk. And yet, I've never bothered to ask...what IS organic milk, anyway? Once home, google gave me my answer. According to this article, there are four requirements for milk to be labeled organic:

1. Cows must not be treated with bovine growth hormone (BGH)
2. Cows must not be treated with antibiotics
3. Cows feed must be grown without pesticides
4. Cows must have access to pasture

I've always preferred buying free-range chicken eggs, but I never saw "free range cows" labeled on milk jugs so it's nice to know that by buying organic milk I can be supporting better living conditions for cows. However, other than #4, the benefits of organic milk seem to be just as controversial as the produce. (Google "organic milk" and grab yourself a snack, because you're in for a looong evening...) I'm intrigued by this article's claim that organic dairy products may have an impact on allergies and eczema, and it makes me wonder if Ava's dairy troubles could have been avoided. Additionally, organic milk is usually ultra-pasteurized, and it seems like this could potentially damage even more of the valuable nutrients contained within. Of course, anyone can make any outrageous claim they'd like on the internet (by the way, did you know I invented the internet??) and much of the information you'll find is not cited. It's definitely something I'll be doing some research on, so I'll let you know if I find out anything good. For the record, Stephen gave the organic milk two big thumbs up...

I'm curious to know if anyone reading this blog drinks organic milk (or has a compelling reason why they don't...) What do you think??


  1. I drink organic milk!...simply for the fact that I don't do the shopping :)

  2. I don't drink milk... and I don't like spoons...