Eliminating pesticides from your diet

Pesticides are not on the USDA Food pyramid, so you shouldn’t be ingesting them on a regular basis. Unfortunately, despite your best efforts, you’re bound to be exposed to some unwanted chemicals. The Environmental Working Group, an advocacy group for organic food, did a study about the relative levels of pesticide

“An EWG simulation of thousands of consumers eating high and low pesticide diets shows that people can lower their pesticide exposure by 90 percent by avoiding the top twelve most contaminated fruits and vegetables and eating the least contaminated instead. Eating the 12 most contaminated fruits and vegetables will expose a person to nearly 20 pesticides per day, on average. Eating the 12 least contaminated will expose a person to a fraction over 2 pesticides per day. Less dramatic comparisons will produce less dramatic reductions, but without doubt using the Guide provides people with a way to make choices that lower pesticide exposure in the diet.”

Unfortunately, the study found that washing doesn’t much help to eliminate the residual pesticides. While you should always wash your fruits and vegetables, it’s still best to choose locally farmed, sustainable produce that has been grown organically.

The Dirty Dozen: The 12 Most Contaminated (Buy These Organic, if possible)

• Apples
• Bell Peppers
• Celery
• Cherries
• Imported Grapes
• Nectarines
• Peaches
• Pears
• Potatoes
• Red Raspberries
• Spinach
• Strawberries

12 Least Contaminated

• Asparagus
• Avocados
• Bananas
• Broccoli
• Cauliflower
• Corn (sweet)
• Kiwi
• Mangos
• Onions
• Papaya
• Pineapples
• Peas (sweet)

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3 Responses to “Eliminating pesticides from your diet”

  1. Melissa CookingDiva

    MARK! how are you doing? —would you like to participate on the $10 buck gem- meme? it is about pairing a wine under $10 with some delicious food. You can read more in my blog or by visiting http://basicjuice.blogs.com/basicjuice/

  2. CL

    Mark, thanks so much for this. It’s most helpful (and contains some big surprises, at least for me).


  3. ReMARKable Palate

    You’re welcome. This surprised me when I first saw it, so I printed out the wallet guide and keep it with me so I know which fruits and vegetables to buy organic.