So we need fruits and vegetables for good health, but are the pesticides that keep them fresh counterintuitive to our health?
Pesticides are widely used in producing food to control pests such as insects, rodents, weeds, bacteria, mold and fungus. If they are potent enough to keep all these creatures away, what do they contain and is that harmful to humans?
According to the World Health Organization, pesticides ARE potentially toxic to humans. They may have negative effects on reproduction, immune or nervous systems, cause cancer and lead to other problems.
A health report released by the Cancer Registry of Greater California, the pesticide-intense region of Napa Valley I may add was shown to have highest rates of cancer among all 58 California counties. That's a big hint that something is wrong.
The Environmental Working Group recommends buying organic produce whenever possible to reduce exposure to pesticides and publishes an annual list which ranks the pesticide levels in non-organic fruits and veggies.
Below you'll find their most recent list which I save on my phone and pull up weekly during my visit to the grocery store!
The Dirty 12 (a.k.a: "Dirty Dozen") should be bought organic as they contain highest levels of pesticides. The Clean 15 do not have to be purchased organic as pesticide levels are lower.
Click here to get EWG's full list.