Ancient civilizations relied on nature to provide us with skin and hair, cleaning, and clothing products. Before man began inventing and creating a myriad of synthetic products containing a wide variety of often dubious or harmful chemicals, nature had been providing us with all these products.
So what exactly are natural foods? According to the United States Department of Agriculture, natural foods refer to any product that does not contain any artificial or synthetic flavor, color or preservative. It should also pass the criteria being only minimally processed i.e. being made from the basic traditional processes to make it safe for human consumption. These processes include freezing, drying, smoking, and roasting. Minimal processing also refers to processes that will not alter the raw product e.g. pressing fruits to make juice.
Healthier and Better Tasting Food
Natural foods and products have become increasingly popular for a number of reasons, key among them being the health and wellness benefits that can be associated with naturally grown foods. Advocates of natural products argue that since they are produced without any additives, they are definitely safer to consume. They therefore pose fewer health risks to the population. Pundits also argue that natural foods may actually be better-tasting than their artificial counterparts. This is because the natural taste, color and texture are intact and has not been altered by any additives or preservatives.
No Side Effects
Women form the largest market for the cosmetic industry. They are always on the lookout for better beauty products that will have no side effects on their skin and bodies. Natural cosmetics have become very popular because of this advantage. Compared to synthetic beauty products, natural cosmetics are safer to use.
According to dermatological research, most natural beauty products have been tested and proven to be hypo-allergenic. You therefore need not worry about side effects such as pimples and rashes. Synthetic products are usually made from parabens and animal by-products and chemicals which are too large to be absorbed into the skin. They end up blocking the pores and making the skin look worse than before. This is one reason why many people are turning to natural products for their skin.
Environmental conservationists are always advocating for going green. The worsening of climatic conditions due to increased global warming is one factor that has made people become more conscious about natural products. Products made from synthetic materials have a negative impact on the environment. Manufacture of these products leads to harmful chemical emissions into the environment. Most of the products made from natural materials however, are eco-friendly because they are made with the basic traditional methods.
The bottom line is that today, many people have come to the realization that natural is best when it comes to health and beauty products. People are going green in almost every aspect. There are foods, cosmetics, and health supplements made from all natural materials. Manufacturers are re-thinking their production methods and have rebranded their products to incorporate natural herbs and processes into their products to make them more alluring. The consumer however, should be cautious because some of these products may not really be natural. You should thoroughly check the ingredients on the packaging to know the components before purchase. You can also choose to only purchase products from stores with a reputation of only selling all natural products just to be on the safe side.
A great place to shop certified all natural and organic products is IHerb.com
United States Departure of Agriculture
United States Department of Food and Drug Administration