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Monday, July 26, 2010

The Mommy's Guide to Pesticides

So I recently blogged about discovering {thanks to a dear friend ~ thank you, Ruth!!} the Environmental Working Group's website and how you can use it to check all your cosmetics, sunscreens, etcetera, to find the ones with the least harsh & fewest chemicals.  What I also mentioned was that they also advise on both the dirtiest and the cleanest produce you can buy for your family.  So that's what I wanted to talk to you about today!



The EWG has what they call the "Dirty Dozen" and the "Clean 15," referring to, of course, the dirtiest and cleanest or produce.  Why does this matter?  Well, pesticides "can cause lasting damage to human health, especially during fetal development and early childhood."  And now that studies have lasted long enough, scientists know the long-term consequences they can cause.

What I found particularly interesting is that people who eat 5 fruits and vegetables a day from the "Dirty Dozen" list consume about 10 pesticides per day versus those who eat from the "Clean 15" who ingest fewer than 2 pesticides daily {according to EWG research/website}.  So there really is a significant difference here, especially when you start multiplying those numbers by each day.

They do advise that washing helps a little, and so can peeling; although the problem with peeling, of course, is that many nutrients are in the skins of produce, so you ideally don't want to waste the skins.  A good approach, in my opinion, would be to buy organic when possible.  Use the list below {provided by EWG site} to help you on your future market trips!

Dirty Dozen {Buy these organic}
Celery
Peaches
Strawberries
Apples
Blueberries
Nectarines
Bell Peppers
Spinach
Cherries
Kale/Collard Greens
Potatoes
Grapes

Clean 15 {Lowest in Pesticides}
Onions
Avocado
Sweet Corn
Pineapple
Mangos
Sweet Peas
Asparagus
Kiwi
Cabbage
Eggplant
Cantaloupe
Watermelon
Grapefruit
Sweet Potato
Honeydew Melon

Visit the EWG website to print off your own guide {wallet-sized!}; I have it printed already and just keep it in my purse for market & grocery store trips.  Or, if you have an iPhone, they also have an app you can download for easy reference from your phone when out shopping.


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2 comments:

Life With the Crazies said...

That's so helpful to have this list! Thanks Kari!!

Adam's Blankie said...

You're so welcome! :)