Is it really necessary to buy organic when it comes to fruits, such as oranges and bananas, that have a thick peel?

Fruits with thick peels generally contain less detectable pesticides than fruits with a thin skin. If you are planning to use the peel or zest of a citrus fruit, you will want to stick with organic because the skin may otherwise contain a high amount of pesticides. Peeling fruit does cut back on the amount […]

Should I install a water filter in my home that removes fluoride?

The purpose of adding fluoride to drinking water is to cut back on the incidence of tooth decay. According to Newsweek, the American Dental Association claims that tooth decay occurs between 50 and 70 percent less frequently in areas with fluoride in their drinking water. In a 1987 study, the National Institute of Dental Research […]

I am not only trying to avoid eating animal products, but I am also trying to avoid wearing them. Do you have any suggestions for where I can find shoes that are not made of leather?

It is not as difficult as one might think to find animal-free footwear. There are even several companies that specialize in animal-free footwear. Check out http://www.veganline.com/ and http://www.mooshoes.com for more information.

I am currently using a supermarket brand of laundry detergent, and I would like to switch to a brand without harsh chemicals and dyes. Any suggestions?

I often wonder how the dye- and fragrance-laden detergents actually clean clothes. Several years ago, I made the switch to using dye-free detergents and I have never looked back. Mainstream brands, such as All and Tide, produce laundry detergents that are free of added dyes and fragrances. Your health-food store should also carry some alternatives. […]

I’d like to start substituting wheat flour for white flour. I have tried it a few times, and the consistency turned out strange. Should I use more/less wheat flour when substituting?

The trick is to substitute whole wheat pastry flour for all-purpose white flour. Whole grain flours are naturally higher in gluten, the protein in wheat flour that causes baked products to be chewy and tough. Pastry flour contains less gluten than all-purpose flour. By using whole wheat pastry flour as a one-to-one replacement for all-purpose […]

I have heard that dark chocolate is healthy. Do you recommend eating dark chocolate everyday? How much is considered healthy?

It would be wonderful if chocolate were actually good for us—That way, we wouldn’t need to feel guilty polishing off a box of truffles! Cocoa beans do contain flavanols, which have been linked to blood vessel and cardiovascular health. The majority of chocolate consumed is actually low in flavanols because flavanols make chocolate bitter, exactly […]

Is all the produce at the farmers’ market organic?

It is unlikely that all of the produce at the farmers’ market is organic, but a good portion of it may be. A farm must be certified organic through the USDA National Organic program to sell produce labeled as organic. Although many farmers who sell their produce at farmers’ markets are, in fact, certified organic, […]

Sproutman’s Basic Sprout Bread

Soak 1 cup of hard wheat in a jar for 8–10 hours. Sprout in your Sproutbag for 2 days. Examine the seed for the shoot. The shoot is short, thick, and grows in the opposite direction of the hairlike roots. In order to achieve the desired consistency, the shoot must be the length of the […]

Halloween: The Organic Way

Halloween is truly a kid’s holiday—good friends, creative costumes, fun-filled parties with spooky themes, and candy. Lots of sugary candy! Too many sugary treats in your kid's possession and the inevitable arguments that ensue over this treasured trove can be a parent’s worst food nightmare. This Halloween doesn’t have to be so scary. Upgrade your […]

Earth-friendly Halloween Tips

Here are a few tips to help make your Halloween a little easier on the environment. Make your own costumeA visit to your local thrift store can provide a variety of used clothing and accessories for trick-or-treating costumes. Bring the children and let them create their outfits using what's available. Resist the urge to buy […]

Fresh Vegetables and Fruits May Help Stop Cancer

Keep eating your veggies because they may keep you cancer-free. A new study by University of Calefornia, San Francisco (UCSF) shows that consumption of onions; garlic; beans; yellow vegetables; dark, leafy vegetables; and cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, broccoli sprouts, cauliflower, cabbage, and Brussels sprouts help reduce the risk of cancer and specifically pancreatic cancer. […]

Organic Diets May Increase Fertility

Many commonly used pesticides are either known or suspected of disrupting human hormones—including Atrazine, benomyl, carbendazim, carbufuran, dimethoate, DDT, lindane, and synthetic pyrethroids, to name a few. Vinclozolin, for example, causes male rats to develop female sex organs and delays puberty. Carbendazim disrupts the production of sperm and damages testicular development in adult rats. It […]