That association held true even after accounting for factors like smoking, exercise, and socioeconomic status - all of which are known to affect cancer risk.
"Diet is complex", said Nigel Brockton, the director of research at the American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR). They also praised the study for including tens of thousands of people and following them prospectively instead of retrospectively.
Overall, by an average of 4.5 years after the surveys were completed, participants developed 1,340 new cancers.
Thousands of studies on diet and illness have been conducted for decades.
Eating organic foods does have tangible benefits according to a recently published study.
It turned out that people ate more organic, 25% less likely to have faced cancer.
Even participants who ate low-to-medium quality diets yet stuck with organic food experienced a reduced risk of cancer, the authors found.
So then, how does one approach the new study by the French team?
Another was non-Hodgkin's lymphoma: The most frequent eaters of organic foods were 86 percent less likely to get this form of cancer than their counterparts on the other end of the spectrum.
Meanwhile, 6.5 percent of the organic food samples tested had detectable pesticide residues. Researchers followed the participants, who were cancer-free at baseline, between 2009 and 2016.
The study leader Julia Baudry, an epidemiologist at Institut National de la Sante et de la Recherche Medicale in France explained that for this study they looked at diets of 68,946 French adults.
The only statistically significant correlations were a reduction in breast cancers among postmenopausal women, and a steep drop in the incidence of lymphomas.
Chavarro also said it is unclear that quantifying organic food consumption is really calculating what the study authors want to measure - reduced exposure to pesticide residues through diet.
An editorial accompanying the study concludes that, though further investigation is warranted, "the link between cancer risk and organic food intake is still uncertain".
He said while it's hard to say at this point that eating organic is directly associated with a reduction in cancer risk, it's always good to think of ways we can try to prevent cancers, whether it's through more screening or improving our lifestyle habits.
The strongest evidence for reducing cancer risk is associated with adopting a healthier diet: increasing fruit and veg consumption and cutting consumption of processed meat, refined carbohydrates and sugar.
"Overall fruit and vegetable consumption is good for you, organic or not", she said.
I think there are two important takeaways from this study.
For Brockton, "research moves forward one study at a time". Still the authors need to show this, he said in the podcast about the study. Such items now represent 5.5 percent of all food sold in retail outlets, according to the organic trade group.A representative of the Alliance for Food and Farming, a group that seeks to address public concerns about pesticides, said consumers should not worry about cancer risks from consuming conventionally-grown fruits and vegetables.