Early on in the twentieth century, a few scientists—mostly in Germany—experimented with chemicals as a means of fertilizing food crops. They found that a mixture of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium (NPK) would grow big yield crops of good-looking vegetables, grains, legumes and fruits. But little interest was taken in their discoveries until the end of World War II. At that time most foods were still grown pretty much as they had always been—by farmers who manured, mulched, and rotated their crops to keep soils rich and in good condition. To put it another way, most food was grown organically, although nobody had even coined the word; for this was no more than what traditional farmers throughout the world had done for thousands of years.
MASS DESTRUCTION BEGAN HERE
When the war ended, big chemical conglomerates who had been involved in the manufacture of phosphates and nitrates as war materiel found themselves stuck with huge stockpiles. They went looking for new markets. Aware of the early research into chemical fertilizing, they turned towards farmers, and began to sell them artificial NPK fertilizers at costs low enough to make it all look very attractive. These purveyors of chemicals also spread the false belief that NPK is all you need to grow healthy crops. There were unfortunately two very important facts that the chemical hawkers left out. Probably they did not even know. After all, it was not good for their profit margins to know. The first is that, although plants grow big on artificial fertilizers, they do not grow resistant to disease. The second is that the health of human beings eating food plants grown this way is, sooner or later, seriously undermined.
Plants grown only on NPK are deprived of essential minerals and other micro-substances they need to synthesize natural complexes in roots and leaves, which ward off attack by insects, weeds and animals. So before long the new artificially fertilized vegetables and fruits began to develop diseases. The chemical hawkers were quick to the rescue. The answer to this problem, they said, would be found in using more chemicals. That is how pesticides, herbicides, nemacides and fungicides came into being. They provided chemical companies with yet another exciting business opportunity—especially since the longer you fertilize chemically, the more depleted in organic matter your soils become, and the less they contain of the minerals and trace elements needed to synthesize natural protective complexes during growth, so the more pesticides you need. So as time went on, more and more pesticides and other chemicals were sold. Before long another important fact began torear its ugly head. It was this: like plants, human beings need a lot more than nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus from the foods they eat too, to maintain their own health.
Your body cannot make minerals. It has to take them in, in a good balance, from the foods you eat. In addition to nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus, it requires magnesium, manganese and calcium, selenium, zinc, copper, iodine, boron, molybdenum, vanadium, and probably other elements as yet undiscovered as well, to stay healthy. These elements need to come from the foods you eat. Generally they do, when foods are grown organically in healthy, traditionally fertilized soils. But they are increasingly missing and unbalanced in the foods we buy today, thanks to our legacy of chemical farming.
EARTH’S BLESSED CREATORS
The organic matter in healthy soil is Nature's factory for biological activity. It is built up as a result of the breakdown of vegetable and animal matter by the soil's natural 'residents'—worms, bacteria and other useful micro-organisms. The presence of these creatures in the right quantity and type gives rise to physical, chemical and biological properties that create fertility in our soils and make plants grown on them highly resistant to disease. When it comes to human health, they do a lot more.
The minerals and trace elements we need to look after our metabolic processes, on which health and leanness depend, must be in an organic form—that is, taken from living things like plant or animal foods. You cannot eat nails—inorganic iron—for instance, and expect to protect yourself from anaemia, or chew sand—inorganic silica—and be sure to get enough silica, the trace element that keeps your nails and hair strong and beautiful, and helps protect your bones from osteoporosis. It is the organic matter in soils that enables plants grown on them to transform inorganic iron and silica into the organic form which is taken up by the vegetables and fruits, grains and legumes.
Destroy the soil's organic matter through chemical farming, and slowly but inexorably you destroy the health of people and animals living on foods grown on it. Eating food grown organically protects from significant mineral deficiencies, as well as from distortions in mineral balances. What few people realize is that an overload of one or more mineral elements alters your body’s ability to get enough of other minerals, undermining the people's health. No such protection is available when foods are chemically grown. So eat organic even if you have to grow your own foods in the garden or feed on sprouted seeds you grow in your kitchen window. Your body will bless you with energy, protection from early aging, and the sense of wellbeing that many long for but few as yet experience.