Which Fruits and Veggies Should Be Eaten Organic?

Organic foods, are those foods that have been grown with no “chemical” or hormonal additivities during their growth cycle. Keep in mind, organic produce probably still contain pesticides, however, those pesticides are usually derived from natural substances rather than synthetic ones.

Buying all organic seems expensive, overwhelming and often times it’s simply not an option. However, not to worry. Not all fruits and veggies have to be organic. Swapping out the “dirty” or overly pesticide sprayed fruits and vegetables for organic ones help in the long run; and there are some “clean” fruits and vegetables that can be eaten nonorganic.

The Environmental Working Group’s (EWG), analysis of a test conducted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) found that 70% of conventionally grown fruits and vegetables contain up to 230 different pesticides or their breakdown products. Veggies and fruits are important additions to a healthy diet, however, research suggests that pesticides in produce may pose a health risks, especially to children and women who are pregnant. Remember, pesticides, by definition, are toxic substances, so exposure to them can be dangerous: not just for people, but also for the environment.

Below is a list of the “dirty dozen.” Those are fruits and veggies that have not only been sprayed with pesticides, but have been sprayed with a lot of pesticides! Strawberries and spinach top the 2018 list. When possible, the below foods should be eaten organically:

Strawberries, spinach, nectarines, apples, grapes, peaches, cherries, pears, tomatoes, celery, potatoes, sweet bell peppers and hot peppers (OK Bakers Dozen)

To help with the cost, try to pick fruit and vegetables that are in season. Produce that are in season are usually “cheaper,” because they are typically plentiful, including organic produce. In season food are also more likely to have been grown locally.

At the end of the day, in order to be healthy we must incorporate fruit and vegetables in our diet. The EWG list 15 produce (the “clean” 15) that have been tested and are said, to have low total concentrations of pesticide residues:

Avocados, sweet corn, pineapples, cabbages, onions, frozen sweet peas, papayas, asparagus, mangoes, eggplants, honeydews, kiwis, cantaloupes, cauliflower and broccoli

© 2018 KCNT