Study - Rats Healthier on Organic Diet
9 years ago
From BBC News - http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/tyne/4277977.stm Rats fed on organic food are substantially healthier than those which eat conventionally-grown food, scientists have discovered. The rats, fed on organic fruit and vegetables, were slimmer, slept better and had stronger immune systems. Newcastle University's Dr Kirsten Brandt worked with the Danish Institute of Agricultural Sciences. It is thought the findings could re-start the debate over whether organic food is more beneficial. In the past, scientists have found it difficult to prove whether an organic diet was beneficial or simply and expensive alternative. 'Less obese' The experiment was carried out on 36 rats, which were split into three groups. Each group was fed potatoes, carrots, peas, green kale, apples and rapeseed oil. In each case the produce had been grown using different means - one group ate only organic food; the second ate conventionally-grown produce with high levels of pesticide and fertiliser, and the third group's food contained only minimal levels of fertiliser. The scientists found that the rats fed organically-produced food were measurably healthier, in that they slept better, had stronger immune systems and were less obese. Dr Brandt said: "The difference was so big that it is very unlikely to be random. "But we don't know if they slept better because they were less stressed and had a better immune system. "However, we can say the reason why the rats have different health was clearly due to the fact that there was a different growing method and this was enough for the result."