When You Can’t Go 100% Organic
By Natalya Podgorny
Even if you can’t afford to buy everything local and organic, the Environmental Working Group (EWG), a watchdog and research nonprofit, has identified the “dirty dozen”—those fruits and veggies that contain the highest amounts of pesticides. For these, it might be worth paying for the organic versions. Among conventionally grown, try sticking to the “cleanest 12.” The produce ranking was developed by EWG analysts based on the results of nearly 51,000 tests for pesticides on produce collected by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration between 2000 and 2005. An EWG simulation of thousands of consumers eating high and low pesticide diets showed that people can lower their pesticide exposure by almost 90% by avoiding the top 12 most contaminated fruits and vegetables and eating the least contaminated instead. See a complete produce ranking here.
DIRTY DOZEN CLEANEST 12
(Buy These Organic) (Lowest in Pesticides)
Sweet Bell Peppers Sweet Corn (frozen)
Strawberries Sweet Peas (frozen)
Reproduced with permission of the Environmental Working Group.
Natalya Podgorny is the editor of Yoga International.
Photo by Maureen Cassidy