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What to Buy Organic vs. Conventional

    • Confused about what to buy organic? You’re not alone. It’s a personal choice that can be driven by both environmental and health concerns. However, a 2012 Stanford studyOpens new window found little evidence for health benefits of organic foods over conventional, leaving many of us wondering whether the higher price tag is worth the cost.

      Still the study’s lead author Dena Bravata, M.D., M.S., concedes that “if you look beyond the health effects, there are plenty of reasons to buy organic.” Many people are concerned about the impact conventional farming practices have on the environment and prefer the idea of supporting local, organic farmers. And, despite the Stanford study, some of us simply can’t stomach the idea of ingesting chemical residue.

      Some say it just boils down to common sense. If you don’t like the idea of conventional pesticides on your food, buy organic produce whenever you’ll be eating the skin. If you can peel it, don’t worry about it. You may also want to take extra care with babies and young children.

      Here at MyLifeStages, we turned to dietitian Rachel Frieberg, M.S., R.D., of Sutter Health’s Palo Alto Medical FoundationOpens new window for some advice. Here’s her list of what she believes is still worth the extra cost and what isn’t.