Consumers in the U.S. and across the globe are increasingly choosing to buy organic eggs over non-organic. But does buying organic eggs really bring greater health benefits than non-organic eggs?
What Makes Organic Eggs Different?
Organic eggs are treated and produced very differently from non-organic eggs. To be certified organic, crops used in chicken feed cannot contain any pesticides or herbicides. In addition, the crops cannot be genetically modified or be fertilized with chemical or synthetic products. The chickens must be raised without the use of antibiotics, hormones, or other pharmaceuticals.
The Benefits of Buying Organic Eggs
Hens that are raised organic are also free to roam outside, consuming plants, grasses and insects that can help improve the nutritional quality of Omega-3 fatty acids in eggs. The results of a study by Mother Earth News showed that “compared to conventional American eggs, real free-range eggs have less cholesterol and saturated fat, plus more vitamins A and E, beta carotene and polyunsaturated omega-3 fatty acids.”
According to Mother Earth News, free- range eggs may contain:
So how does this improved nutritional content translate into greater health benefits?
Beta-carotene and Vitamin A
Omega-3 fatty acids
What are the dangers of eating non-organic?
Eating organic clearly brings a host of health benefits. But what kind of effect does eating non-organic have on health? Various pesticides can affect the nervous system, be toxic to humans, be poisonous to certain animals, and contain heavy metals like copper. Studies have shown that accidental exposures to high levels of pesticides can lead to cancer, autism, and ADHD. Though the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has set limits to the levels of pesticides that can be used, eating organic can significantly reduce the amount of residual pesticides consumed.