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Natural vs. Organic – What’s the Difference?

by jenny sansouci on October 27, 2010

When browsing the supermarket shelves, we are continuously hit with messages promoting various health claims – it can get very overwhelming if you’re not sure what to look for. One thing that trips people up a lot is the difference between ORGANIC and NATURAL. While I was away last week on the Jillian Michaels Wellness Cruise, I picked up some information from Nature’s Path that described the difference for me in detail, and I want to share it with you here.

The difference between Organic and Natural basically comes down to the type of ingredients that are used to grow and process the product. Now, ideally you’d be eating mostly products without extensive ingredient labels (fresh, whole foods!) but this information definitely comes in handy.


  • Artificial flavors: NO
  • Artificial colors: NO
  • Artificial preservatives: NO
  • Artificial fertilizers: NO
  • Irradiation: NO
  • Genetically Modified Ingredients: NO


  • Artificial flavors: NO
  • Artificial colors: NO
  • Artificial preservatives: NO
  • Artificial fertilizers: MAY BE USED
  • Artificial pesticides: MAY BE USED
  • Irradiation: MAY BE USED
  • Genetically Modified Ingredients: MAY BE USED


  • all of the above may be used.

Just another reason to choose organic whenever possible and pay attention to ingredients on your food labels!

*Thanks to Nature’s Path for providing me with this helpful chart. I truly enjoyed their Organic Pumpkin Flax Granola on the cruise, although it does have evaporated cane juice in it, which makes me feel similar to when I have refined sugar. So although I wouldn’t eat this granola often because I don’t totally dig the cane juice, it’s a good alternative to other sugary/corn-syrupy cereals you may be accustomed to.
Happy label-reading! 🙂

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