Debate on the Dirty Dozen
“Should I spend my money on organic fruits and vegetables?”
“Is organic produce superior nutritionally?”
“Does it really matter?”
I hear these questions frequently. My response was typically, “Check out the Environmental Working Group’s (EWG) ‘Dirty Dozen’ and ‘Clean Fifteen,’ and use that as a guide.”
Now I’m not so sure.
I’ve read several articles that discredit the methods that lead to their lists. One such article cited that a toxicologist did an investigation and discovered:
- The methodology used by the EWG to rank the fruits and vegetables with respect to pesticide risks lacks scientific credibility
- Exposure to the most commonly detected pesticides on the “dirty dozen” fruits and vegetables poses negligible risks to consumers
- Substituting organic forms of the “dirty dozen” foods for conventional forms does not reduce consumer risks
The Alliance for Food and Farming (AFF) is a non-profit organization that represents organic and conventional farmers of fruits and vegetables and farms.
According to their testing tool, for example, an adult woman could eat 3,624 individual strawberries without worrying about potential pesticide exposure. Strawberries are historically on the “Dirty Dozen” list.
I love strawberries but there’s no way I could eat that many in one sitting.
I could go on; however, I’ll get right to the point.
Eat more fruits and vegetables for optimal health, either conventional or organic.
Do not be afraid.
Wash all your produce with plain running water, and if it’s a hearty fruit or vegetable, use your little produce scrubber.
Do what is best for you and your family. Please don’t avoid eating produce because it’s on a list. The benefits of eating more produce far outweigh any possible risks.
If I learn more information that influences my thoughts on this topic, you’ll be the first to know.
Another Pineapple Tip
A friend of mine wrote me with another tip for choosing the tastiest pineapple. Pluck a leaf and if it comes out easily, the fruit is ripe.
My Report on Orange Cauliflower
A few weeks ago, I wrote about colored cauliflower. I had the courage to try an orange one, and…drum roll, please…It was sweeter than the white variety.
I roasted it with an assortment of other vegetables and enjoyed it. Even Mr. Non-Compliant gave it a thumbs up.
Next time I’ll try a purple one and see what happens.
It’s always good to add more variety to our diets, which is why I continually try to include fruits and vegetables that I don’t normally eat.
I challenge you to do the same.
Health Coach Carol
“Life expectancy would grow by leaps and bounds if green vegetables smelled as good as bacon.”— Doug Larson
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