Organic Fruit + Veg: The Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen!
When it comes to organic foods I have not always been a convert. For a long time I thought it was a con from the food industry to get us to spend more money. I thought it wasn’t possible to grow food without chemicals and figured any unhealthy or harmful processing wouldn’t be allowed to take place when producing food surely?
It seems that I have gone full swing and am pretty convinced of the benefits of eating pesticide-free fruit and veg. Why?
1. Organic fruit and veg tend to have a higher nutrient content as the soil it is grown in is generally in better condition and more full of minerals. This means that the quality of food is better and delivers more benefits.
2. It is thought that normal farming is actually destroying and harming the land in the long run – not good for our great grand children!
3. Pesticides and insecticides are man-made chemicals that are seen as toxins when entering the body. This can lead to a whole host of health problems and immune reactions.
4. I am all about being natural and believe that nature knows best.
Most of us agree that eating organic is probably not going to do us any harm but we would also probably all agree that the thing that holds us back is THE PRICE!
It is the result of chemical free and nutrient dense food that its more expensive, and understandably so. In order to obtain the ‘organic’ label your farm/food/factory has to undergo stringent inspections and tests to be able to call themselves organic, which I imagine is a costly process. But at the end of the day if you dont have it, you can’t spend it!
Personally I would love to buy only organic fruit and veg but unfortunately this is not possible with our current budget and I personally feel that ensuring we eat organic dairy and meat is of a higher priority. So what is one to do?
Well I am going to share with you a useful tool that has helped me pick and choose my way through the ‘I want organic but am skint’ minefield of healthy eating.
The Environmental Working Group has come up with a list of the most pesticide-ridden fruits and veg, plus a list of the fifteen cleanest (i.e. least pesticides) fruit and veg to buy. I find this really helpful so that I know what to avoid unless I can’t afford organic, so I currently only buy organic apples – if none of my other items are organic my apples always are!
It is also worth mentioning that the unhealthiest thing you can do is to get your knickers in a permanent twist by worrying about every single thing you eat. Food does not need to be feared, just honoured.
Here is the list (click to zoom in)