Are Organic Foods Better Than Nonorganic?

Are organic foods really that much better for you than regular food? And can you lose weight by eating only organic food?
- Mandy*

Organic foods can be part of a healthy diet. Whether they are much better for you than conventional food is still up for debate. One benefit of organic food is that it is pesticide free, which is definitely better for the environment. It's probably better for you as well, though many people argue that the pesticide residue on foods is too small to cause health problems.

Some studies have found certain organically grown foods have higher nutrient contents, while others suggest that organic food just tastes better. But these differences may not offset the higher prices you will pay for organic food. When it comes down to it, eating organic food is a personal preference.

As far as weight is concerned, eating only organic food will not necessarily help you lose weight. You still need to make good food choices, both in what you eat and how much. Many foods labeled as organic can still be high in sugar, fat, and calories — so a bag of organic potato chips isn't a healthy food.

Whether you go organic or buy conventional, eat a variety of healthy foods, including fruit and vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein, watch portion sizes, and be sure to be active every day.

Reviewed by: Mary L. Gavin, MD
Date reviewed: July 2012

*Names have been changed to protect user privacy.

Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.