Sounds like the debate is settled then—consuming foods certified organic is the way to go. Not so fast. The researchers cite previous studies showing that antioxidants are linked to a reduced risk of heart disease, cancer, and other chronic conditions, yet they're stopping short of advising that consumers make a permanent switch to the organic aisle. "This study demonstrates that choosing food produced according to organic standards can lead to increased intake of nutritionally desirable antioxidants and reduced exposure to toxic heavy metals," wrote lead author Carlo Leifert, a professor at Newcastle University in England. "This constitutes an important addition to the information currently available to consumers, which until now has been confusing and in many cases is conflicting." Still, the authors add that more research needs to be done on whether the boost in antioxidants translates into better health.
Related: The 5 Fish That Are Most Contaminated—And 5 You Should Eat Instead
In the meantime, choosing food higher in nutrients and lower in toxic chemicals certainly can't hurt. For more information on food that's contaminated with the most pesticides, check out the foods on the latest dirty dozen list.
This article was originally published on Women's Health.