Monday, September 28, 2009

My choices

I hesitate even writing this because I totally don't want to come off as "holier than thou" or high on my horse or anything. And let me further preface this by saying that everyone's choices are their own, and I completely respect that and in no way judge anyone, or any mum, for their choice.
What I'm trying to get out is the reasoning behind my choice to eat organic.
As much as possible, while living up north.
There are two yuppie food "trends" advocated for in most modern research/literature: eating local and eating organic. For us, eating local would mean eating moose, cranberries, and whatever we might be lucky enough to grow in a sort-seasonal greenhouse in the summer. Options are limited. That said, when I make the trip into Whitehorse to stock up, I am also limited by the availability of locally-grown or produced food. Hey, it's the North, you can't expect much. I'll eat Alaskan halibut when given the choice, and when we're up in Dawson City in the summer, they have a weekly farmer's market that I indulge in. But eating local on a regular basis is just impossible.
But eating organic is not, and before I threw my extra dollars and cents at a food fad, I researched. My journalistic curiosity impels me so. A lot of the nutrient value of fresh produce is lost in transit. We live very far away from southern BC, California, Ontario, so long road trips are a reality for the food in my fridge. Organic or not, nutrients are lost. And a lack of preservatives in organic produce means shelf life is drastically reduced. In the big giant grocery store in Whitehorse, the organic produce is usually already bruised and on its way out.
But the Riverside Grocery has a great array of organic fresh foods and non-perishable foods. And so I spend a little extra for organic pasta, organic produce and organic soups.
At the giant grocer, the PC Organics line is impressive, to me. There is an organic salsa, muffin mix, baking supplies (flour, sugar, etc), milk, butter, eggs, cereal. The repertoire is expanding. Taste wise, organic and regular stuff is on par. It just costs more.
But what I reason is this: Buy paying more for an organic product, I am voting with my dollar. I am supporting sustainable farming and food production that is not dependent on chemicals, pesticides, preservatives. And when I am nursing a small bitty baby, I know that pound for pound, a food's ingredients affect her little body in higher concentrations than mine. So I feel better buying organic apricots, then bringing them home to puree and feed her. Or buying organic tea for me to sip, knowing my milk supply is fueled by my food choices. It just feels better.
I can do it, it's practical, and though a little more expensive, worth it to me. We don't have many expenses living up in isolation. We spend the majority of our money on food. So it may as well be the organic stuff, for an array of reasons.
She eats non-organic apple chunks once in awhile and I in no way have a heart attack when she eats regular cucumber from the little store here in town. And if organic stuff stopped being sold, I wouldn't cry myself to sleep over the extra preservatives in her food.
Like I said, every mommy makes her choices best she can. And this is mine. So now that I have been granted a nice reprieve from Abby during her morning nap, I hear her stirring. So I will rescue her from her crib-prison, nurse her, give her some organic banana-papaya-avocado mush that I made (with regular bananas though) and we will go for a walk on this beautiful fall day.

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