We all need to be aware of our food choices. Me and my friends volunteered at the Fremont Earth day fair and took surveys of other citizens at the Earth day fair. We picked broad topics to research, such as GMO related questions and raw vegetable related questions. Our goal was to see if the citizens are both health and environmentally conscious.
First, we interviewed the people on the GMO topic. We interviewed 27 people on this topic. The first question that they answered was, “Would you prefer GMO or Non-GMO fruits and vegetables?” Out of the 27 people, 17 preferred Non-GMO. The remaining 8 either wasn’t sure or they only looked at the cost of the item. This showed that some people are unaware as they do not check the ingredients, and unable to always make healthy choices due to higher costs.
Still in the same topic, the second question was, “Did you know that regular seed packets we buy locally are non-organic seeds?” Out of the 27 people, 17 knew that they were non-organic. But on the other hand, 10 people thought that all seeds were organic. Some people are not being informed because some companies are not putting all the information on the packaging. We need to be more aware of what we buy because there could be bad chemicals or ingredients in it, even in a seed!
Then we interviewed 35 people on the topic of raw vegetables. The first question was, “Do you like to drink raw vegetable juices or smoothies?” Out of the 35 people, 24 liked raw veggie drinks, and they felt that it was an easier way to intake their daily vegetables. But the other 10 didn’t like them. This question shows that veggie drinks are the craze and becoming more common.
The final question we asked was, “Do you know that all veggies can’t be eaten raw?” Actually, 24 of the 35 people didn’t know that all veggies can’t be eaten raw. Although 9 people did know. Most people thought that all vegetables could be consumed raw. They were surprised when we explained that only some vegetables can be eaten raw. Cruciferous veggies contain a chemical/substance that can harm our Thyroid gland – examples of cruciferous are cabbage, arugula, and even cauliflower! And there is oxalic acid in some veggies, even spinach, that block the absorption of iron and calcium and cause kidney stones! So even though raw juices may taste good, it’s safe only when made with vegetables that can eaten raw. Mostly, it is better to cook veggies or even lightly steaming would remove the negative effects.
Therefore, we all need to be aware of our food choices and how we eat. Even though the citizens at the Earth day fair are mostly environmentally conscious, there are still some things we may not know.
About The Author:
Amita Gowda, 10 years old, a passionate & upcoming youth leader, is working in collaboration with a team on the project, “Food Choices and Healthy Living.” She also serves as a youth board advisory council for Green Kids Now, Inc. non-profit organization.