Alright guys, the Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen for 2017 is here, and keeping with my yearly tradition here on the blog, I’m giving you a head’s up on what made the list so you can watch out for these overly sprayed pesticide ridden fruits and veggies.
Most of us are aware of the reasons it’s a good idea to avoid pesticides so in that way, I’ll keep things short and sweet, but if you want more in depth information you can visit previous years posts here and here and as always you can visit the reference for this list – EWG’s website (Environmental Working Group) for more detailed information as to their findings for the year, as well as to download the Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce.
Dirty Dozen (foods that are recommended to buy organic)
- Sweet bell peppers
In addition, hot peppers are also highlighted again this year and shown to be contaminated with insecticides toxic to the human nervous system, so if you eat a lot of these it’s a good idea to go organic and if buying conventional, it’s suggested to cook them to reduce pesticide intake.
Findings Worth Mentioning
And how about those strawberries? They just can’t seem to make it out of that number one spot which is scary since Americans eat around eight pounds of them a year. Not only do non-organic strawberries contain dozens of pesticides, including ones that have been banned in Europe or linked to reproductive damage and cancer, worse yet – huge amounts of poisonous gases (some developed for chemical warfare) are being used by growers to sterilize fields before planting.
Also worth being aware of, spinach made quite the jump up to number two from the eighth spot last year. Apparently non-organic spinach is showing more pesticide residues by weight than all other produce tested. What’s even more scary about this one is that seventy-five percent of samples contained a neurotoxic pesticide, permethrin, which is banned from use on food crops in Europe for a good reason.
At lower-level exposure, studies have linked these types of insecticides to neurological effects in children. In fact, a study showed children with detectable residues of permethrin in their urine were twice as likely to be diagnosed with ADHD, and at high levels, this toxin can even cause tremors and seizures.
Clean Fifteen (foods you don’t have to buy organic)
- Sweet corn∗
- Sweet peas frozen
- Honeydew melon
∗A small amount of sweet corn, papaya, zucchini and summer squash sold in the United States is produced from GE seeds. If you want to avoid genetically modified foods, you’ll want to but organic varieties of these.
Well that wraps up this years list! Hope you find this useful for your next trip to the grocery store!