What Are Natural Foods?
Natural foods are as close as possible to their original state. No artificial ingredients or preservatives are added to them. Examples: brown rice, almonds, certain apple juices. Natural foods may or may not be organic.
What’s a Parent to Do?
First and foremost, it’s important for your child to eat a well-balanced diet. If organic foods are available and you can afford them, great; give them a try. But don’t sacrifice good nutrition for the organic label.
Regardless of whether food is organic or not, handle all food carefully and safely.
Shopping and Safety Tips
* Buy vegetables and fruits when they’re in season. This will help ensure the best quality. For example, buy apples in the fall and berries and tomatoes in the summer. This also saves on fuel to transport produce from far away.
* Read labels carefully. Organic may not mean healthy. Some organic foods are high in fat, sugar or salt.
* If you worry about pesticides, peel all fruits and vegetables. Trim the outer leaves of leafy vegetables like lettuce and cabbage. But remember, peeling may also reduce nutritional value. Pesticides are sometimes found in the fatty parts of food. So remove fat from meat and the skin from fish and poultry.
* Handle all food carefully and safely.