That doesn't mean it's not healthier. How our obsession with organics' "healthiness" led us away from the term's roots
Of all the food-related countercultural buzzwords that have gone mainstream in recent years, organic ranks among the most confusing. Like its cousins (cf. local, free-range, or worst of all, natural), the term's promotion by grocery stores everywhere has caused it to escape the strict definitions laid out by the USDA . But from Stanford University comes new research suggesting what we should have known all along: organic food isn't actually more nutritious than traditionally-farmed goods.
In a widely publicized and discussed analysis of more than 200 studies comparing organic to regular food products, researchers have found that organics don't have more vitamins or minerals (with the lone exception of phosphorus, which we all get in sufficient amounts anyway). Nor do they have an appreciable effect when it comes to heading off food-borne illness, although the germs found in conventional meat do have a higher chance of being drug-resistant (more on that in a bit).
That we needed a study to understand how nutritionally similar organic foods are to non-organics is a perfect example of the way we've lost sight of what the term really means. It's worth keeping in mind that organic refers only to a particular method of production; while switching to organic foods can be good for you insofar as doing so helps you avoid nasty things like chemicals and additives, there's nothing in the organic foods themselves that gives them an inherent nutritional advantage over non-organics. In other words, it's not wrong to say organic food is "healthier" than non-organics. It's just unrealistic to think that your organic diet is slowly turning you into Clark Kent.