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While buying organic products may increase your grocery bill, the health benefits are well worth it. Chicken is one of the best places to spend your organics budget, according to a study in the November 2010 “Foodborne Pathogens and Disease.” If you’re resolved to eat a healthier diet, consider the benefits of organic chicken and add it to your shopping list.
The meat from organic free-range chicken is superior in terms of nutritional value. Since the chickens are able to move about and forage the meat has far less fat per pound compared to cage-raised chicken. That means that you get more meat per pound and each bite contains higher nutrition. Also meat tastes better compared to caged chicken.
Nobody likes to think of food that’s poisonous, but commercially-raised poultry often contains hormones, antibiotics and trace amounts of pesticides, all of which can be a potential health hazard. Antibiotics used in commercially-raised chicken may be one of the factors that causes germ resistance in some people, and even small amounts of hormones can have a big effect, according to “Consumer Reports,” possibly increasing the risk of cancer and early-onset of puberty. Commercially-raised chicken may also be exposed to other contaminants, like heavy metals that appear in some commercial chicken food.
Organic chicken tends to be less fatty than its commercially-raised relatives, according to the American Culinary Federation, which recommends adding a little fat to the pan when you’re cooking organically raised chicken. Leaner cuts of meat make chicken not only a healthy choice but also a rich protein choice.
Another benefit of organic chicken is the flavor, according to the American Culinary Federation. Chicken that’s not commercially produced tends to be more tender and have more complex flavors, and diners seem to prefer the taste of organic chicken.
Access to pasture
The term “organic” means that the chicken had access to the outdoors, rather than spending its entire life in a cage the size of a sheet of paper, which is what happens on most conventional, high-volume farms.
One study found that organic chicken has 28 percent more omega-3 fatty acids.