May 13
Image from ewg.org

Image from ewg.org

Buying organic everything can sometimes get expensive and not always necessary. Certain foods are safe to eat that are not labeled as organic and The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has put together a list fruits and vegetables that are pesticide free and do not have need to be bought organic.

These are called the Clean Fifteen:

  • Asparagus
  • Avocados
  • Cabbage
  • Cantaloupe
  • Sweet corn
  • Eggplant
  • Grapefruit
  • Kiwi
  • Mangoes
  • Mushrooms
  • Onions
  • Papayas
  • Pineapples
  • Sweet peas
  • Sweet potatoes
Image from ewg.org

Image from ewg.org

The Dirty Dozen is just that. A list from the EWG of all the produce that are not safe to eat due to pesticide and chemical exposure. These are the ones that are best to buy organic to make sure you are not getting a mouth full of unwelcomed chemicals.

  • Apples
  • Celery
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Cucumbers
  • Grapes
  • Hot peppers
  • Nectarines
  • Peaches
  • Potatoes
  • Spinach
  • Strawberries
  • Sweet bell peppers

A few other crops that did not meet all the criteria to be on the Dirty Dozen list but are still considered contaminated (the Plus List) are domestically grown summer squash and greens such as collards and kale. The pesticide organophosphates has been found on these items as well as green beans in 2012. Organophosphates and other toxic pesticides are highly toxic to the nervous system and most have been restricted by the EPA. However traces are still showing up on leafy greens such as the kale and collards.