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Pesticides - A Simple Step to Cut 80% of Them from Your Diet

Health risks from pesticides has been established worldwide by independent research scientists and physicians.

Their link to health problems (like nervous system toxicity, cancer, hormone system effects, skin, eye and lung irritation, birth defects, and infertility) has been acknowledged by the U.S. as well as international government agencies.

I would not think that would come as a surprise to most thinking folks since pesticides are toxic by design and made to kill living organisms.

Reasons people ignore the danger.

In spite of that, there are many people who choose to ignore the danger.  One of the reasons for that, I believe, is because we are all bombarded by so much information and it can become so overwhelming to deal with that the brain just shuts it out.

Others, just don’t know who or what to believe.

Many find it inconceivable that the “industry” would put out products (or be allowed to put out products) that are slowly killing the population.

My Dad sold meat for many years. I remember him telling me —–I guess he was about 50 at the time —-“they wouldn’t sell it if it were bad for you.” I was only 20 at the time but knew that was an incorrect assumption.

A simple action to lower pesticide consumption by almost 4/5s

There is a simple action that can be taken by almost everyone (no matter how rich or poor) that can lower pesticide consumption by nearly 4/5s.

That action is to simply avoid the 12 conventionally grown fruits and vegetables in the stores that are most contaminated.

According to the EWG (I’ll tell you about them in a minute) ——when you eat the 12 most contaminated (list is below) you will be exposed to an average of 10 pesticides a day! When you choose from the 15 least contaminated you consume fewer than 2 pesticides a day. That last number should be great news to almost everyone!

About the EWG

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) is a non-profit organization founded in 1993. In their words they “specialize in environmental research and advocacy in areas of toxic chemicals, agricultural subsidies, public lands, and corporate accountability… ”

They basically drill through and make available to us, information and data that would not otherwise surface or be made public.

Most of their funding comes from private charitable foundations and individuals.  (Donations from corporations are only a tad more than 2%.)

Shoppers Guide Available

As a result of testing dozens of fruits and vegetable to determine which are worst in terms of pesticide exposure, they have released a wallet guide for consumers. It’s a free download and gives you the list of the “Dirty Dozen” and the 15 least contaminated.

The Dirty Dozen –  12 foods highest in pesticides (7 fruits and 5 vegetables) are:
Celery
Peaches
Strawberries
Apples
Blueberries
Nectarines
Bell Peppers
Spinach
Cherries
Kale/Collard Greens
Potatoes
Grapes (imported)

If the above list has some of your favorites in it you’ll be encouraged to know that Strawberries, Blueberries, Bell Peppers, Spinach, Kale/Collard Greens, and Potatoes are very easy to grow yourself.

If you are unable to grow your own, try to buy at least these 12 fruits and vegetables as Certified Organic in the grocery stores.  Or buy them from sources where you know how they have been grown.

The 15 foods lowest in pesticides are:
Onions
Avocado
Sweet Corn  (I would be careful with corn since the percentage from GMO seed is becoming larger all the time.)
Pineapple
Mangos
Sweet Peas
Asparagus
Kiwi
Cabbage
Eggplant
Cantaloupe
Watermelon
Grapefruit
Sweet Potato
Honeydew Melon

To get the wallet sized Shoppers Guide for free click here.
To get the full list of the top 49 most consumed fruit and vegetables and their pesticide ranking click here. I like the full list alphabetized .

Note:
Many pesticides are taken up by the plant. Thus they are present in the entire plant, not only on the skin. In spite of this, vegetables were washed before testing for pesticide levels just for the sake of accuracy.

Pregnant?

Your unborn child will take up pesticides from your body through the placenta.  I think all will agree that is not a good way to start life. (Not to mention that some pesticides can cause birth defects.) Please do everything you can to give you and your child the best start.

8 comments to Pesticides – A Simple Step to Cut 80% of Them from Your Diet

  • Beppy White

    I have certainly seen lists like this before but these are really excellent and in a very helpful format.I will laminate the Dirty Dozen card and keep it in my wallet.
    BTW I have planted more lettuce and it is up!

  • Hi Beppy,

    I too thought this particularly list was about the best. Laminating it sounds like a great idea and I think I’ll do the same.

    Glad to hear your lettuce is up! Let me know when you start eating it.

    I planted more yesterday. (Think I told you that my first transplanted lettuce “disappeared”. ) The second transplanting is just sitting there. Sooner or later I’ll have a good report.

    I always enjoy hearing from you. Thanks for adding.

    Best,
    Theresa

  • Heather Bress

    Hello Theresa. There is an app for iPhone users called “What’s On My Food” that is very handy to have while shopping. It is very detailed – apples for example show the total residues for both conventional and organic (42 vs. 3!) AND how many and specifically which of the following: known/possible carcinogens, suspected hormone disruptors, neurotoxins, developmental/reproductive toxins, honeybee toxins. Isn’t technology amazing?

    Heather in MD

  • Theresa

    Thanks Heather! Great info.

  • Betty Dotson

    Theresa,

    Do you grow grapes, & if so, what variety have you found to produce well in Virginia?

    Thanks,
    Betty

  • Theresa

    Betty — Yes and no.
    We use to have grapes on the property where we started gardening 35 years ago. I can’t even remember what happened to them.
    We had grapes at this property on a small section of ground that although “we keep” — technically belongs to someone else.
    They were concord grapes and very good for juice — and I would imagine for jam — although I don’t make jam because of the sugar.
    They’ve been gone for two years. (long story)
    Sorry I can’t be of more help with grapes.
    Theresa

  • Betty Dotson

    Theresa,
    Thanks to your info on your experience with the Concord grapes, we now have 2 Concord grapevines in our garden LOADED with baby green clusters of grapes! Alfred is predicting a bumper crop! Yea! Organically grown grapes in my very own garden!
    Betty

  • Theresa

    Good job, Betty! (And Alfred!)
    Theresa

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