The Environmental Working Group (www.ewg.org) has new 2011 “Dirty Dozen” and “Clean Fifteen” lists of produce. The 2010 version of these lists are included in The Antianxiety Food Solution, so I want to provide you with the latest and greatest information from the EWG as I’m a big fan of this group, and veggies and fruit of course!
So at a bare minimum use the lists when you cannot find organic or are traveling or visiting friends. The rest of the time, I still encourage buying organic produce.
Dirty Dozen 2011 (fruits and veggies with the highest pesticide residues)
- Nectarines (imported)
- Grapes (imported)
- Sweet bell peppers
- Blueberries (domestic)
- Kale/collard greens
Clean Fifteen 2011 (fruits and veggies with the lowest pesticide residues)
- Sweet corn
- Sweet peas
- Cantaloupe (domestic)
- Sweet potatoes
This is the previous (2010) list I included in the The Antianxiety Food Solution: How the Foods You Eat Can Help You Calm Your Anxious Mind, Improve Your Mood and End Cravings https://www.everywomanover29.com/blog/antianxiety-food-solution-what-you-eat-makes-difference/
2010 “dirty dozen”: apples, bell peppers, blueberries, celery, cherries, grapes, kale or collard greens, nectarines, peaches, potatoes, spinach, and strawberries
2010 “clean fifteen”: asparagus, avocados, cabbage, cantaloupe, eggplant, grapefruit, honeydew, kiwi, mangoes, onions, pineapple, sweet corn, sweet peas, sweet potatoes, and watermelon.
The EWG is a nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting public health and the environment, and they have a super visual here http://www.ewg.org/foodnews/summary/ and a handy wallet PDF you can download. They have also addressed some great FAQS here http://www.ewg.org/foodnews/faq/ This fact I find particularly helpful: “if consumers simply chose their daily recommended five servings of fruit and vegetables from the least contaminated list over five from the dirty dozen, they would reduce the amount of pesticides ingested by 92%”.
I am a proponent of organic produce for these reasons:
- We know there are health implications of pesticides: mood problems including anxiety and depression in farm-workers, ADHD/memory issues in kids (these and others will be covered in more detail in part 2 of this post)
- It tastes SO much better
- It is better for the environment
- It does not impact farm workers (Tom Philpott addresses this topic here http://motherjones.com/tom-philpott/2011/06/dirty-dozen-veggies-dont-forget-farmworkers)
If the cost of organic produce seems to be an issue, buy and eat real whole food instead https://www.everywomanover29.com/blog/we-dont-say-wet-water-why-do-we-say-real-food/ and spend less (or preferably nothing) on fast-food, sodas and junk!