New Study: Organic Food Significantly Lowers Pesticide Exposure in Kids

Feb 19, 2016

Lily Torres, 1, takes a bite of organic baby food made by her mother Camila at Boulder Creek Elementary in Santa Cruz, CA.
Credit Kevin Johnson / Santa Cruz Sentinel

Eating organic food can make Latino children less vulnerable to pesticides, according to a new UC Berkeley study. The effect is even more pronounced in low-income agricultural regions, reports the Santa Cruz Sentinel. The study found that organic food can substantially lower pesticide exposure in children. 

But researchers also found significantly higher traces of pesticides in poor kids from ag communities than in previous studies of middle-income suburban kids. This suggests that rural children are being exposed to harmful chemicals through their environments, in addition to their food.

Past research has linked insecticides to health problems, including respiratory disease and higher rates of attention deficit disorder in children. The peer-reviewed study analyzed pesticides and their breakdown products in the urine of low-income Latino children in California’s farming communities.