Why I Made the Switch to Organic

Source: By Kerry Glassburn

My mom started touting the benefits of organic foods years before I actually started buying them. But then, my mother has always been on the leading edge of the natural health movement – sometimes even a little out in left field – with me taking a little longer to catch up and catch on.

I began to seriously consider making the switch to organic while trying to become pregnant. It just seemed to fit with the other lifestyle changes I was making and I figured it couldn’t hurt. My husband, always the skeptic, wasn’t completely convinced of the benefits, but as it was I who did most of the shopping, he went along with it.

At first, we started with the basics: meat, milk, fruits and veggies. Then, as we began to feel more comfortable in the “health food” section of our local grocery store, we started to explore… next came organic peanut butter, bread, cereal and cheese.

With our discovery of Whole Foods, we really got carried away: flour, sugar, chips, crackers, soups, pasta, salad dressing, cookies. It was amazing how many products out there are labeled organic or natural. And if you shop at one of the big natural food stores, the possibilities are endless. Around the same time as our addiction to Whole Foods reached its peak, so did our grocery bill and our time spent shopping (the Whole Foods isn’t exactly close to our house).

It was enough of a difference to make us stop and think, “now why, exactly, did we do this? And what are the true benefits of eating organic?” But the added time and cost was not enough to make us want to go back to our old ways – how can you give up meats and dairy products with no hormones or produce not sprayed with insecticide, when it makes so much sense? What we did do is find a happy medium for our family: buying organic products that we feel provide the biggest benefit or ones that we truly prefer over the “regular” version, and saving a little cash by buying the store brand for the rest of our groceries.

Given where we have ended up, I’m thrilled by the growing trend towards organic foods, the rise of the natural food store chains and that our local grocery store offers as many options as it does. And with our first child on the way, we plan to continue to cook and eat organic as much as possible to pass on the benefits to her.

Kerry Glassburn
Kerry makes her home in the Pacific Northwest and is expecting her first child in April.