Show #232 – Liza Oates on the Benefits of Organic Foods


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And on this week’s show!

This week continuing our people and planet series looking into the evidence for health benefits of an organic diet, with Liza Oates, PhD. Lisa did her doctoral research on the health benefits of organic diets after observing in clinic as a practitioner for decades, the wide ranging benefits people felt when she transitioned them to organic food. We discuss organics, how the most important difference is ‘what’s NOT’ in the food, various associations’ claims and media claims and how to engage in thorough research when we want to investigate claims, and we talk about nutrition confusion in today’s world. It’s a great, clarifying listen if you’ve been confused about this topic. 

The questions I asked Liza:

  1. What led you to your PhD topic after years practicing natural medicine and nutrition? 
  2. And did you find any specific health benefits to an organic diet? 
  3. You describe very succinctly what the major 4-fold benefits, a couple of which are bigger picture benefits beyond our personal health, in adopting an organic diet wherever possible: Can you share those with us now?
  4. Why is promoting an organic diet so ‘controversial’  (we can talk about fossil fuel interest via fertilisers, ag lobbyists… my audience can handle it) 
  5. As someone with a PhD, you would have read and put forward many papers in your time… How can a narrative be controlled and promoted to have people believe one thing, and yet that thing isn’t the whole story? 
  6. “Do your research” is a phrase bandied about a lot these days and yet, we don’t get taught HOW – especially in the modern world of algorithms and funding ambiguity: How can we most effectively “do our research” when it comes to organics and nutrition? 
  7. Can we look at “eggs” given they’ve been in and out of favour over the decade: How could one come to decide yay or nay on eggs and how can our initial search terms impact what is served up and ultimately the forming of our beliefs? 
  8. Macros: Help us, doc. People are still confused and whatever you do, there seems to be someone telling you to do the exact opposite!  
  9. Bioindividuality – how much do things like ethnic evolutionary diets + genetics + age/stage of life impact on us finding our best personal diet? Are we likely to see research helping us navigate this better and better over time? 
  10. When it comes to organic food, we hear about the clean fifteen/dirty dozen each year launched by the EWG. Does this apply in Australia? Does it also depend on region and growth method as to how many additional synthetic inputs might be used in growing food? 
  11. An exciting new certification: The GradCert in Organic Food Nutrition: Tell us about it? 
  12. When it comes to organics and nutrition: What are you most excited about i the research and in public health?

Other helpful links:

You can know more about Liza and her work at

You can also find her on Instagram @liza.foodasmedicine and on Facebook

This week’s show Sponsors

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Enjoy the show and thanks again for taking the time to rate and review the show on your app – it’s like tipping the bartender and it means the world.

Low Tox. Happy us. Happy planet


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