Trying to Be "Organic and Natural"

Updated on April 21, 2008
A.C. asks from Arlington, TX
7 answers

Hi ladies!
I'm going through this phase where i want to try and be more Natural and organic with what i eat, and i have no idea how to get started! Does anyone have any information on anything like that??! Thank you in Advance!!

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L.S.

answers from Dallas on

You don't neceasarily have to go completely organic in order to make an impact. I know that can be cost prohibitive for some people. What you can do is try and focus on certain foods that are better organic and buy others that aren't conventionally. We try and buy some organics -- especially milk and other dairy products. Another thing I've been trying to do is to not buy produce that was grown in, for example, Chile. Try and buy what's in season. That way food isn't trucked in and thus more expensive and using more gas and minimizing the footprint.

Almost forgot.... Coffee. We now buy organic (and free trade) coffee in bulk at either Sprouts on sale (it's the same price as conventional) or at Costco. It really isn't any more expensive.

http://lifehacker.com/software/food/five-best-foods-for-g...

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J.T.

answers from Dallas on

i would begin by changing the "easy" things first. you'll overwhelm yourself if you try to change it all at once. in my opinion, the absolute most important is organic milk and meats, and you can find that at supertarget, sprouts, whole foods. from there, start reading up on which fruits/veggies it's actually beneficial to buy organic. in my research, i've found that organic bananas, oranges, etc.(anything with a really thick "skin") aren't necessarily any better than conventional. we do buy a LOT of our organic non-perishables at costco. we get a HUGE box of organic pop-tarts for $8, several pounds of organic sugar for $7, and they have a lot of organic snacks for the kidlets. but, start with milk and meat, and even if you can't get your hands on organic at a given store, be SURE to buy hormone free/antibiotic free - i truly believe that a lot of these "superbugs"(MRSA for examplet) are mutating to the extent they are due to us being constantly exposed in small doses to antibiotics that are given to the cows/chickens in food/milk production. good luck!

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A.K.

answers from Dallas on

First find a good grocery store that has mostly or a lot of organic and natural products- Whole Foods, of course, but also Market Street- google each of those to find the one closest to you. We actually have a newer Wal-mart closeby that has a lot of organic and natural, but a different WM in a different direction from us has hardly any.

Another good tip is to always read labels and avoid things like High Fructose Corn Syrup (go for "sugar" or "evaporated cane juice"- things like that) and anything that says "Hydrogenated", ie: Partially Hydrogenated Soybean Oil is not good. Usually things like that with four words to describe the ingredient are bad for you (unless it's "Expeller Pressed Olive Oil" or "Natural Evaporated Cane Juice", you know?). Also, if it's some kind of "chemical" word that you can't pronounce- it's usually good to stay away from them as well. You're just going to have to get used to reading the labels. Usually the more natural products have a lot less ingredients, as well. Ice cream, for instance- I love Breyers- ingredients in the Vanilla is just milk, cream, sugar, vanilla (or something like that). Read the ingredients on the vanilla ice cream on some other brands and there are like 30 ingredients (so, I've learned that if I pick something up that has too many ingredients, it's usually not good).

Maybe a good thing to keep in mind when buying something is if you made the same thing homemade, would you put "partially hydrogenated soybean oil" in it or canola oil, things like that? Whatever the ingredients list should really be things that you have at home in your pantry.

HTH!

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A.

answers from Dallas on

You've received lots of great advice here already regarding milk (get organic, with no rBGH) and meats (go organic and all natural here, we use Town and Country Foods www.townandcountryfoods.com for our meats) but here's a quick list of foods I've already reviewed the ingredients list to avoid HFCS, artificial flavorings/colorings, transfats, etc. to make your grocery shopping easier:

Yogurt - get O-brand/Stone Mountain/Horizon, all other brands have HFCS
Bread - get homemade from the bakery or bake yourself
Cereal - Get cheerios or O-brand or Kashi Mighty Bites
Milk/Cream - O-brand or Horizon
Ice Cream/Popcicles - Breyers (Have you looked at the ingredients list on Blue Bell?!)
Sour Cream - O-brand or Horizon
Worcestershire sauce - store brand didn't have any HFCS, name brand did!
Granola Bars - Nature Valley for crunchy or Sunbelt for chewy (Kashi brand tasted awful!)
Vitamins/Omega-3 Chews - Li'l Critters (Had to exchange artificial food coloring for Glucose and Sucrose)-if anyone has a better brand for this, please let me know!

Avoid most prepackaged foods or meal helpers unless they are from a specialty store.

Also, avoid any fake foods (aspartame, imitation creamer) the real thing is processed by the body better. For instance, fake sugars aren't processed as sugar by the body so it doesn't create insulin as it needs to. Hence, early onset diabetes...

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D.A.

answers from Dallas on

It's great that you want to be more organic and natural, but don't let it be a phase...make it a lifestyle change! Not just for you but for your baby and any other children you may have in the future.

Definitely start with dairy and meat products first! Then go to your fruits and veggies...especially the ones with thin or no skins...the pesticide, etc. absorb into those the most and so you ingest more that way.

Another area you need to look at is your personal care products as well as cleaning products. I am a consultant with Arbonne International and can share what makes our products different as well as pure, safe and beneficial for your skin/body and health!

If you'd like more information email me at [email protected]____.com and I'd be happy to help you out.

D. :)

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J.W.

answers from Dallas on

I agree with some of the other responses. Start being aware of what it is you are eating. Read every label, understand what the bad things are and what they are in.

Then perhaps, start eliminating things one at at time. High Fructose Corn Syrup, for example or partigally hydrogenated oils. HFCorn syrup actually makes us crave it.

The good news is that marketers are making it easier these days by offering "organic" and "natural" items, but you still need to read the labels on these products.

Your little boy is at a great age to start with things like fruit snacks. The commerically marketed ones are full of HFCorn Syrup and food colors. There are some great natural/organic alternatives...if he doesn't start on the commerical ones, he'll never crave them.

There are some great magazines out there that can help with suggestions and recipes.

Good for you for this choice for you and your family. It can be overwhelming with the amount of things out there, but it gets easier with each trip to the market!

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T.T.

answers from Dallas on

I can help you get more natural in your home...cleaning products, personal products, etc. Send me a pm with your number and I'll give you a call and we can talk.

Thanks!
T.

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