Avoid the Dirty Dozen
I try to buy organic produce whenever possible. I realize that organic produce often costs more than conventional. However, there are 12 fruits and vegetables you should always try to buy organic according to the Environmental Working Group (EWG). (The EWG is a non- profit organization specializing in environmental research and advocacy. Most of their funding is from private organizations dedicated to protecting public health and environment). The fruits and vegetables noted below appear to retain the highest pesticide residue. Cut your exposure to pesticides by purchasing the organic variety for the following:
Fruits: apples, cherries, imported grapes (due to high levels of toxic residue), nectarines, peaches, pears, and strawberries. It ought to be noted that imported grapes may be in the top twelve but domestic grapes ranked in the top 25.
Vegetables: celery, lettuce, sweet bell peppers, potatoes, and spinach.
On the flip side there is also a Clean 15. 15 foods that show little to no pesticide residue and are on the ok list for consuming non organic. (Notice the thick skin on most of the foods listed, potentially protecting residue consumption).
Fruits: pineapple, mango, kiwi,cantaloupe, watermelon, grapefruit
Veggies: onion, avocado, sweet corn, sweet pea, asparagus, cabbage, eggplant, sweet potato, mushrooms
As a dietitian I have to mention that eating non organic fruits and veggies (if cost sets you running) out weights the benefits of not.