You can protect yourself from cancer by eating organic, a new study suggests. Those who frequently eat organic foods lowered their overall risk of developing cancer, a study published Monday in JAMA Internal Medicine finds. Specifically, those who primarily eat organic foods were more likely to ward off non-Hodgkin lymphoma and postmenopausal breast cancer compared to those who rarely or never ate organic foods.
The authors of the study even speculate that the case is the lower levels of pesticides in organic food (though their study isn't test this idea).
Not everyone agrees. This Guardian article argues (without being overly critical of the methods used):
But taking the limitations into account, it’s hard to take anything out from this study at all. If you are male, well-educated, or don’t smoke, there’s no reason to eat organic based on this study at all. In fact, the main group that eating organics seemed to help was postmenopausal French women, and while that is still an interesting finding it limits the applicability of this study to many people’s lives.
And the study gets different conclusions to other large studies of diet.
So how reliable is this study and its speculative conclusions implicating pesticides? Does eating organic food reduce your risk of cancer?