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The Dirty Dozen: Produce and Pesticides

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There is a growing consensus in the scientific community that pesticides and other chemicals in food can be detrimental to health especially for children and during fetal development.

Many pesticides are also “estrogen mimickers” which can create havoc with estrogen effects and metabolism.

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has developed a list of the “dirty dozen”, the 12 most contaminated fruits and vegetables. This list resulted from analysis of over 50,000 tests for pesticides on produce collected by the U.S. Department or Agriculture and FDA between 2000 and 2005.

We can substantially reduce our overall pesticide exposure just by buying only organic when purchasing any of the “dirty dozen”.

They are:

  • Apples
  • Strawberries
  • Spinach
  • Lettuce
  • Bell Peppers
  • Pears
  • Cherries
  • Grapes (imported)
  • Potatoes
  • Peaches
  • Celery
  • Nectarines

The produce found with the lowest levels of pesticide residues are:

  • Asparagus
  • Pineapple
  • Kiwi
  • Onions
  • Sweet corn (frozen)
  • Avocado
  • Broccoli
  • Sweet peas (frozen)
  • Mangos
  • Cabbage
  • Bananas
  • Eggplant

I will also add that soybeans, or anything made with soybeans (I know it isn’t produce), should be organic as well.

We can create an eating plan specific to your needs and goals.