Can Eating Organic Lower The Risk Of Cancer?

At Buffalo Market, we believe food can be better. Not just in terms of taste, but in terms of health and its effect on your body. That's why we work with local farmers and producers – less food miles means fresher, better tasting produce, and less harm for the environment. Where possible, we also look for organic, as we believe that toxic pesticides and industrial chemicals have no place in the food chain.

Study after study has shown the health benefits of organic, and the benefit of eating more naturally grown produce. But what of the claim made of organic, that it can lower the risk of cancer? It’s a bold statement, but one shrouded in myth and counterclaim. As it turns out though, the science is getting clearer.

A French study conducted in 2018 that followed 70,000 people reported that the most frequent consumers of organic food had 25% fewer cancers than those who didn’t eat organic at all. Researchers noticed a particularly steep drop in the incidence of lymphomas, and a significant reduction in postmenopausal breast cancers.

Of course, this doesn’t prove that organic foods prevent cancer. Simply that an organic-based diet can contribute to reducing cancer risk. But, given the scope and detail of the study, it was still a significant finding. Furthermore, it links to the findings of various other epidemiological studies that consistently found a higher rate of lymphomas among farmers and farm workers regularly exposed to certain types of pesticides.

What’s certain is that some of these chemicals have been known to be harmful for quite some time. The International Agency for Research on Cancer has classified two of these – malathion and diazinon – as well as the herbicide glyphosate, as probable human carcinogens, with all three linked to non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

The only other large scale study investigating links between organic diets and cancer was conducted back in 2014, in the UK. Known as The Million Women Study, its results were somewhat inconclusive, due to the fact that many of the participants had significant other cancer risk factors that skewed results.

Clearly, the healthiest diet involves eating large amounts of fresh vegetables and fruit, and cancer can be caused by any number of dietary, lifestyle, or hereditary factors. But eating organic has been shown time and time again to be beneficial – both for your body and the planet – and if there’s even an outside chance that organic produce can decrease the risk of certain cancers, it makes sense to include as much organic in your diet as possible.

We carry a wide variety of organic produce, and are working hard with local farmers and producers to expand it. Start choosing organic today, and see the difference it can make for you.