Edited 3/18/2023 We are not fully organic, but I do try to buy organic/grass-fed beef and organic cage-free eggs.
OK, so there is a lot of talk about Organic foods, non-GMO, etc. There are skeptics, and there are true believers. Full disclosure we are now 85-90% organic family. Like most people, I complained about how much more expensive buying Organic is. But, by taking all the junk out of our diet, or most of it, like cookies, crackers, chips, soda, etc I have been able to save enough money in our food budget to actually afford Organic foods. Yes, read that again! So, on a fixed budget, it definitely can be done. We have also reduced our meat consumption by 50-75%, again saving us a huge amount of money in the food budget. Don’t worry no one is malnourished, probably better nourished. There are several reasons for choosing Organic, and over the next few Thursdays, I will address them separately. Today, I will discuss the nutrition of organic foods and their taste.
To be clear the nutrition of a product is just the nutrition, ie how much vitamins, protein, and other minerals is in the product. So, I did some research and there have been over 200 studies on the nutrition of foods. Again, remember nutrition is not chemicals, toxins, etc, it is the straight-up nutrition facts. Organic foods vs, non-organic foods, are not more nutritious. They have the same, or very close to the nutritious contents of the non-organic varieties, with 2 exceptions. Apparently, Phosphorus and Omega 3’s, are higher in Organic foods. If you have kidney disease the Phosphorus may be troubling. But, remember that plant-based foods with Phosphorus are not absorbed well in the body. I think it is 60% of the Phosphorus in plant-based foods is absorbed in the body. Whereas Phosphorus from meat sources is 100% absorbed in the body. Omega 3, I am sure you have heard is very important to the health of humans. So, one article I found said to focus on free-range eggs, as the Organic option for Omega 3’s Again, if you have CKD, eating the egg yolk of a whole egg, is where all the Phosphorus is. Since eggs are not a plant-based food, you would be absorbing 100% of the Phosphorus. Free-range egg whites would be a better option.
Now for the taste. I read lots of articles where some people said yes, Organic tastes much better, but others said no. Go figure, right? My family finds that Organic foods taste much better, with the exception of dairy. I don’t really eat dairy foods, so I have to take their word for it. My son especially did not care for Organic milk. He said it has absolutely no taste, though it did not taste bad and did the job on his cereal. We also do not eat Organic meat, because well I just can’t afford the cost of the meat. Even with the budget changes, the meat is just too cost-prohibitive. I try to get no antibiotics or preservatives instead. But, fresh fruits and vegetables, definitely have a much better flavor. I think this might be due to the fact that Organic foods will not have such a long shelf life. So, they are picked and sold at their peak of freshness.
What do you think? Do you try to fit organic foods into your budget? From a CKD perspective, I would say organic foods would be much better. But, just switching to cooking at-home meals with whole foods, and avoiding processed foods would be a very healthy option.
My disclaimer is short and sweet. None of the information on this blog is intended to be medical or nutritional advice. It is for informational purposes only and to spark a conversation.