12 Foods to eat Organic and the “Clean 15”


 With food prices rising, many of us are looking for ways to buy the healthiest foods possible at the lowest cost. One way is to focus on purchasing certain organic items, while “settling” for others that are conventionally-grown.

 Each year, the Environmental Working Group analyzes Department of Agriculture data about pesticide residue and ranks foods based on how much or little pesticide residue they have.

The group reports that “picking five servings of fruits and vegetables from the 12 most contaminated would cause you to consume an average of 14 different pesticides a day,”  while choosing foods from their “Clean 15” list will cut the pesticide volume by more than 90 percent.

The “Dirty Dozen” with the highest pesticide load, and the most important to buy organic are listed here in order from highest pesticide load:

1.  Apples

2. Celery

3. Strawberries

4. Peaches

5. Spinach

6. Nectarines

7. Grapes

8. Sweet bell peppers

9. Potatoes

10. Blueberries

11. Lettuce

12. Kale/collard greens

The “Clean Fifteen”, with the lowest pesticide load listed first are:

1. Onions

2. Corn

3. Pineapples

4. Avocado

5. Asparagus

6. Sweet peas

7. Mangoes

8. Eggplant

9. Cantaloupe

10. Kiwi

11. Cabbage

12. Watermelon

13. Sweet potatoes

14. Grapefruit

15. Mushrooms

Go to  http://static.ewg.org/reports/2011/foodnews/pdf/2011EWGPesticideGuide.pdf to download a handy shopping guide.

To lessen the environmental impact, buy locally-grown organic food whenever possible.

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