Having a healthy family for multiple generations - Melinda Hemmelgarn's Moment
Melinda H from MO
I didn't always eat the way I do now (organically!). It took me many years of research beyond my formal nutrition and dietetics degrees to really connect the dots between food, health and agriculture. To find "food truth," I interviewed farmers in the field, biologists at the bench, and studied a growing body of solid scientific evidence linking agriculture to health and disease. And I'm still learning!
What inspired me to eat organic? In a nutshell: health. It's everything, really. And our food dollars are the most powerful votes we have to protect public health and our natural environment for future generations.
I choose to eat organic because....
1. My mother (shown here in one of her signature hats) died from breast cancer shortly after this picture was taken. My daughter never really got to know her loving grandmother. The President's Cancer Panel report recommends choosing food grown without pesticides, chemical fertilizers, growth hormones and antibiotics in order to protect us against cancer. Mothers are natural nurturers, care-providers and grocery gatekeepers. I miss my mom.
2. My family. I care about my family's health, but also the health of families worldwide. Our kitchen table is a sacred family gathering place for love and organic nourishment.
3. Mother Earth. My family loves to play – swim, splash, and canoe in America's beautiful waterways. Organic growing methods protect our natural resources from harmful chemicals used in industrial agriculture and factory farming. By choosing organic food, I help protect our "commons" -- the water we cherish for drinking, fishing and cooling off on hot summer days.
4. Our food. By gardening and farming organically, we protect our precious pollinators, critical for fully one third of the nourishing food on our plates. Many pesticide residues and chemical fertilizers cannot be washed off. These are systemic compounds that poison our food. Plus, it's not your imagination: organic fruits and vegetables really do taste better and deliver higher levels of anti-oxidant nutrients. Just remember: healthy soil, healthy plants, and healthy animals make healthy people!
Melinda Hemmelgarn, M.S., R.D.