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Organic food is not healthier, study finds

Organic vegetables do not contain more healthy antioxidants or minerals than those grown the conventional way

If you think paying a higher price for organic vegetables gives your diet a health boost, think again.

Antioxidant levels in organic onions, carrots and potatoes are no different to their conventionally-grown counterparts, a new study shows.

This is according to science news site

The results were released last week in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.

Same antioxidant levels

The study was carried out by OrgTrace, which is cooperation between researchers at the University of Copenhagen’s Faculty of Life Sciences, Denmark’s Technical University and Århus University.

In the study, Pia Knuthsen and colleagues conclude that the health benefits of organic food are not scientifically documented.

The scientists carried out experiments in which they analyzed levels of antioxidants termed ‘polyphenols’ in organic and conventionally-grown onions, carrots and potatoes.

They found no differences in polyphenol content between organic and traditional methods of growth.

»On the basis of the present study carried out under well controlled conditions, it cannot be concluded that organically grown onions, carrots, and potatoes generally have higher contents of health-promoting secondary metabolites in comparison with the conventionally cultivated ones,« the report states.

Not necessarily a rip-off

Previous studies into the health benefits of organic vegetables have failed to take differences in geography, climate and cultivation methods into account, say the researchers.

This report takes these differences into account, and as a result, organic vegetables’ health benefits disappear.

However, this doesn’t mean that organic food in general is a waste of money, the researchers point out.

Aside from potential health benefits, consumers choose to buy organic products because of animal welfare issues, environmental benefits and better taste.

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