What’s all the fuss about eating organic? Most of us seem to intuitively know that it’s healthier, but it also costs a lot more. Is it worth the price?
The main difference between organic and conventional produce is the use of toxic pesticides. These pesticides have impacts on both the environment and human health, but continue to be used because of their high return on investment for farmers. As individuals, it’s best to be informed and empowered to make the best health decisions for ourselves and our families.
Which is why I wrote this post!
Yes, eating organic is definitely better for your body, but even I don’t buy organic all the time. Why? Unfortunately it does cost more, so I need to find a balance between my budget, my time, and my health. When it comes to buying organic, I live by the “do what you can with what you have” mentality.
Luckily for all of us, the Environmental Working Group puts out a “cheat sheet” each year, outlining which produce has the most pesticide traces, and which has the least. They break this into two categories: the Dirty Dozen and the Clean Fifteen. If you’re trying to balance health and budget, use this as a guide for when to go organic, and when to stick with conventional.
Dirty Dozen Key findings:
- 99 percent of apple samples, 98 percent of peaches, and 97 percent of nectarines tested positive for at least one pesticide residue.
- The average potato had more pesticides by weight than any other produce.
- A single grape sample and a sweet bell pepper sample contained 15 pesticides.
- Single samples of cherry tomatoes, nectarines, peaches, imported snap peas and strawberries showed 13 different pesticides apiece.
- Sweet bell peppers
- Cherry tomatoes
- Snap peas - imported
Clean Fifteen Key findings:
- Avocados were the cleanest: only 1 percent of avocado samples showed any detectable pesticides.
- Some 89 percent of pineapples, 82 percent of kiwi, 80 percent of papayas, 88 percent of mango and 61 percent of cantaloupe had no residues.
- No single fruit sample from the Clean Fifteen™ tested positive for more than 4 types of pesticides.
- Multiple pesticide residues are extremely rare on Clean Fifteen™ vegetables. Only 5.5 percent of Clean Fifteen samples had two or more pesticides.
- Sweet Corn
- Sweet peas (frozen)
- Sweet potato
I hope this helps you in your quest to live a happier, healthier life!
You can find more information here.