Some people do, and that's awesome. But Crabby tends to be a bit hit or miss about it. It's easier when she's at the Farmer's Market, buying local organic produce that was picked that day and looks and smells fresh and lovely. (Or even the farmer's market stuff that's not officially certified organic but is nonetheless grown without pesticides. Crabby doesn't think her kindly neighborhood vendors are lying to her about that).
Buying organic, however, can be tougher at the Big Chain Grocery stores. Sometimes the offerings are limited. Often what they do have is very expensive and old and wilty and scraggly because so few shoppers frequent that section. It's always tempting to stick with the big bright pyramids of perky-looking and attractively priced fruit and vegetables in the regular section, bypassing entirely the sad little clumps of pricey organic fare off in the corner.
But who wants to eat pesticides?
Crabby really doesn't. Even if sometimes she manages to "forget" that the regular produce she's throwing in her cart could be contaminated with all kinds of evil chemicals that no amount of scrubbing will remove.
Help is here, however! If you can't buy organic all the time, there's a handy guide available that rates the best and worst produce in terms of pesticide content. You can apparently reduce your pesticide exposure by about 90% by going organic on the 12 worst items.
And here's an additional important tip: Print that sucker out and put it on your refrigerator! Seriously. Crabby has seen these sorts of lists before and always thinks she will remember which foods are really bad, but when she gets to the store she never does. Take that info from your fridge when you're making a shopping list and put a little "O" by the high priority organic stuff--because that's where you want to spend your organic budget.
Who knows, perhaps if we all stop buying non-organic versions of the Worst Offenders, produce suppliers and supermarkets will get the message and offer more and cheaper organic produce!
(OK, Crabby won't hold her breath on that one. The readership of Cranky Fitness is not that big. It will be quite a while before we can influence the selections on offer at your favorite grocery store. But hell, we're working' on it.)
So, enough with the yapping, lets bring on the list!
Note: a much more attractive, suitable-for-refrigerator-display PDF file is available for free from the Environmental Working Group; also they have a way bigger compilation of pesticide data at their site too. But in the meantime...
Pesticide-Laden Fruits and Vegetables to Avoid:
- Sweet Bell Peppers
- Grapes (Imported)
The "Good" (Less Contaminated) Produce:
- Sweet Corn - Frozen
- Sweet Peas - Frozen
So how often do you folks buy organic produce?