You are what you eat, as the saying goes. If you have a diet heavy in conventional foods, there’s a good chance your body is full of chemical pesticides that you don’t even know about.
To shine some light on the issue, researchers from the Swedish Environmental Research Institute performed a study in conjunction with the Coop supermarket chain on what happens when a family switches from conventional food to organic.
Their dramatic findings are revealed in this short video.
“Most food that is grown today is treated with pesticides,” the narrator announces. “That’s not so healthy for the environment, but does it really affect us?”
Viewers are introduced to a Swedish family comprised of parents Anette and Mats and their children Evelina, Vendela and Charlie. Usually, the family doesn’t eat organic food because it’s too expensive. “It costs more than conventional food, and we’re a big family,” Anette explains.
When they volunteered for the study, however, the family gave urine samples to institute scientists and came up with some alarming results.
“We found insecticides, fungicides and plant growth regulators,” says Jörgen Magnér, a researcher with the institute.
Specifically scientists found measurable amounts of 12 common pesticides used in conventional agriculture, including chlormequat chloride, mepiquat, 3-PBA and TCP.
“We’re eating pesticides,” family members realize. “Disgusting.”
The family then replaced their entire pantry with nothing but organic foods and saw noteworthy results after only two weeks. A follow up urine sample found that pesticide levels had already dropped to trace amounts or disappeared entirely.
What specific effect the substances have on the body lies beyond the scope of the study, but the results are appealing to people who don’t like the idea of consuming inorganic chemicals.
“We know very little about the long-term effects of eating food treated with pesticides,” Magnér says. “Especially if you consider that chemicals can be much more harmful when combined together than they are on their own.”
The family in the study is convinced. “When you hear this, you think about your children,” Anette concludes. “There were a whole number of chemicals removed from my kids’ bodies and I don’t want them back.”
The institute posted the full report on the supermarket’s website, although it is not currently translated into English.