Organic this, pesticide-free that … after a while, any discussion on eating organically goes in one ear and out the other — for me, at least. Don’t get me wrong; I’m all for healthy eating. Really, I think it’s important. It’s just that I’m overwhelmed. You can find so much information online about organic eating, from the costs, to which kinds of food should be purchased organically, that you kind of just tune out because you don’t know who’s worth listening to.
Stop Going Crazy!
Thankfully, there’s no need to drive yourself crazy. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has got you covered. The EWG advocates policies to protect global and personal health, and they’re always digging into what’s in our food. EWG’s Shoppers’ Guide to Pesticides in Produce provides the EWG’s choices of the best (and worst) organic foods to purchase based on years of federal pesticide test results.
According to the 2013 edition, these are the top five foods you should always buy organically. Why? Because they’re loaded with the heaviest levels of pesticides, duh! Here they are:
Now of course, many other fruits and veggies are much better for you in organic form. The other nine fruits and vegetables topping the EWG list for having high-pesticide levels are:
• Sweet bell peppers
• Cherry tomatoes
• Hot peppers
Don’t Forget the Kale, Honey!
You should always, always, always buy organic kale, collard greens and summer squash. Conventional versions contain highly toxic organophosphate insecticides — definitely not good for your health. Besides pesticides have a bioaccumulation effect on the body, which means that small concentrations of them add up in your body. There’s a mounting unanimity in the scientific community that even small doses of these pesticides and other chemicals have adverse effects on health, especially during vulnerable periods such as fetal development and childhood.
Where to Buy Organic Food
After a while, the whole “what to buy and where to shop organic” thing becomes redundant. You’ve read this all before, haven’t you? I know, I know. Indulge me. Pretend you haven’t, so I can close out with the following, for those of you who may need a reminder …
You can purchase organic fruits and veggies at the Farmer’s Market, your local supermarket or your local natural grocery chain. Many popular food retailers have sections that have some organic produce, even if selections are limited. Specialized supermarkets like Whole Foods, Sprouts and Market Street may have even larger selections, but it all depends.
Happy shopping! ☺