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Opposing Viewpoints: Organic Foods

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The Benefits of Going “Organic” Outweigh Heavier Price Tags

Many consumers do not know that most everyday household beauty and cosmetic products have harmful amounts of ingredients that are toxic and known carcinogens. We all use these products on a daily basis, oftentimes unknowingly exposing our largest organ, our skin, to poisonous ingredients that harm our health. Becoming aware of this can help you make safer decisions in the future.

Although some might say that buying “organic” or all-natural products is a waste of money, I believe that it’s much better to pay a little extra now, than to spend extra money on fixing the health problems that unnatural chemicals and synthetics cause our bodies to have later.

The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, at safecosmetics.org, offers information on how to buy safer products and offers a “Skin Deep” cosmetics database that allows users to calculate the amount of toxins in their products.

As a consumer, you should make more health-conscious decisions when shopping for beauty and cosmetics because the FDA doesn’t regulate what’s in these products.

The Campaign’s web site says, “Neither cosmetic products nor cosmetic ingredients are reviewed or approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) before they are sold to the public. FDA cannot require companies to do safety testing of their cosmetic products before marketing.”

Since the FDA does not and cannot regulate the beauty industry, many products that are deemed “safe,” are actually dangerous to our health. A perfect example is the Brazilian Blowout hair treatment offered in salons across the country, which has been found to have dangerous amounts of formaldehyde in it.

Avoiding products with synthetic chemicals, by buying organic or natural products, can help you stay away from dangerous side effects. Many different currently offer alternatives can be bought at reasonable prices such as Burt’s Bees, St. Ives and Yes to Carrots.

Another issue when it comes to going organic is whether or not to buy organic food. According to a CBSNews article entitled “Shocking reasons to go organic,” not eating organic foods has a huge effect on personal health.

The first effect is on nutrition, because studies have shown that organic foods may have increased levels of nutrients and antioxidants. Also, studies have shown that pesticides used to grow non-organic crops can reduce fertility. Along with this, research has shown that chemicals used in non-organic agriculture can interfere with the body’s hormone levels, causing weight gain. Lastly, there are the unknown effects that GMO’s could have on the human body.

With all of these “unknown” and negative effects, why not play it safe and go organic with your products and foods? It might cost a few more dollars, but having a healthy body and mind is something that’s beyond the value of any price tag.

Katherine Kulpa, Editor-in-chief

Disadvantages of Organic Products

Organic products have become an ongoing trend for decades. It began with organic farming in the 1990’s and has spread to other items such as organic health and beauty products. A survey conducted in 2010 by lifeinc.today.com, found that 38.6 percent of Americans purchase organic products.

Although organic products have been popular in the previous years, they do have several disadvantages.  Not only do they cost more than non-organic items, but also organic food and beauty products have a significantly shorter shelf life, which means more money is being spent and the cost is ultimately not worth it.

According to love-organic-food.com, organic food is more costly to grow and the cost limits the amount of production. Not only does organic food cost more to produce, but also it is not free of all toxins and can still be considered unhealthy. “Organic food has many disadvantages. We must continue to do research and improve our ability to grow and produce affordable organic food so that the disadvantages of organic food don’t outweigh the advantages.”

Although organic beauty products are made from natural plant ingredients and/or minerals, one thing that manufacturers of organic make up do not share with their consumers is the fact that plants themselves create very powerful toxins.  According to makeup-secrets-revealed.com, “It would, of course, be an error to assume that organic makeup is in actual fact better for you than ordinary makeup which is chemically produced, as plants can contain natural toxins which are powerful, that are equally as damaging to the skin as those products which are produced in a laboratory.” These toxins are sometimes equivalent to or worse than the chemicals found in non-organic beauty products.

While organic products may seem like the best route to go, there are still several disadvantages that make them less appealing. So before you go and shell out the extra cash for makeup or find yourself throwing food away that you just bought a week ago, think about how little of a difference you are making with your health versus the big difference you see in your bank account.

Quina Miller, Staff Reporter

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