Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Are we really what we eat?

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Photo courtesy of
By Ojanae Ellison

There is an age old saying that goes, “you are what you eat,” and it has been a way for adults to prevent children from eating things that aren’t good for them. In today’s calorie driven society, are we really what we eat?
Animals that received antibiotics in their diet, and the antibiotic-containing manure accumulation on the floor of the pen. Photo credit Andrew Olson.
Photo courtesy of the American Society of Agronomy

Because we are so aware of the fact that bacteria can cause disease, many farmers have been trying to find ways to stop the spread of disease by feeding their cattle antibiotics. While that may make the cattle healthier, the manure they produce is then used as fertilizer. This manure still contains the antibiotics and that allows plant-based bacteria to mutate into antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

“Often, 90% or more of the antibiotic is excreted, according to previous studies,” says Francis Zvomuya a researcher at the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg. “Manure containing these is then used as fertilizer on crops.”
These crops are then sold to the public containing the antibiotic resistant bacteria, and the CDC states on their FAQ page on antibiotic resistance that if it’s not cooked or washed properly the bacteria is passed into the human body. If that person gets sick, the usual round of antibiotics won’t work because the bacteria is resistant. So, see we are what we eat because by eating antibiotic resistant bacteria our body develops antibiotic resistant bacteria.
Other agriculturists believe that the solution is organic cropping. It yields soil that is healthier and allows for crops to grow stronger to and to their full potential. Rosedale Institute has been ruling a Farming Systems Trial (FST) since 1981. The FST has showed that organic cropping requires less water, and requires less pesticides which can be as harmful to the environment as it is to our bodies. Their research shows that by making the soil healthier, plants grown in that field will yield healthier and fresher crops. These crops then allow for healthier food choices in the supermarket.
An organization called Moms Across America understands the importance of organic choices, and have launched a billboard campaign to allow organic foods to become more easily accessible. They believe that organic food should be available to all people regardless of socioeconomic class. They want people to healthier and more in touch with nature, no matter where they live.
Although food is important, it is not the most important thing our body needs. The most important essential that nature provides is water. Nowadays that isn’t always safe to drink. Many residents across America are receiving notices that their  tap water isn’t safe. In Flint, Michigan, the residents can’t even use their water to bathe because the lead present in the water could permanently alter the body’s chemistry.
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Being healthy should be as simple as drinking enough water and eating right, but sometimes that’s not enough. In addition to living healthier, begin to heal with nature. Simply  starting your own garden and growing your favorite vegetables is a great beginning. Many towns have community gardens that make doing this easy for everyone, regardless of skill or space.

Nature has a long history of healing humans, now is the time to give back by healing nature through the food we eat.

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