Which organic foods should you buy

By now, we should all know that buying organic food is best. But having a baby ain’t cheap. I try to balance it by buying organic foods that I know contain the most pesticides when grown commercially. Luckily, the Environmental Working Group has put out a handy shopper’s guide that you can print and keep in your purse, diaper bag or like me, in your coupon pouch.  They even developed an iPhone app for when you’re out.

I’m fortunate that I live in Los Angeles and have many good quality Farmer’s Markets available like the Santa Monica, Culver City and Hollywood ones. The majority of the fruits and veggies that we buy are organic from the markets. The food always tastes so much better. In fact, Milan is quite accustomed to the flavor of the fresh, organic foods that he often rejects the food from the grocery store… but he rarely (if ever) turns down the farmer’s market produce.

So what are the worst ones? The “Dirty Dozen” list includes:

  • Apples
  • Bell Peppers
  • Celery
  • Cherries
  • Grapes (imported)
  • Nectarines
  • Peaches
  • Pears
  • Potatoes
  • Raspberries
  • Spinach
  • Strawberries

I think the scariest thing about this list is the fruit that is on it. I know that nearly every baby meal has at least one of these items in it. As I’ve mentioned before, I’m pretty adamant about feeding Milan as much organic food as possible. But after I saw this list, I got a bit neurotic. I’ve relaxed a little bit now that Milan is over a year old. But I still do my best to not ever let him eat non-organic foods on the “Dirty Dozen.”

As for clean non-organic food, the following is the EWG’s list of the “Clean 15”

  • Asparagus
  • Avocados
  • Bananas
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Corn (sweet) – This is not all corn, just sweet corn. But make sure you avoid GMO (Genetically modified) sweet corn.
  • Kiwi
  • Mangos
  • Onions
  • Papaya
  • Pineapples
  • Sweet peas

The general rule of thumb that I learned a long time ago was that if you eat the skin, you want to buy organic. Therefore, I was surprised to see broccoli on the “clean” list. But it makes sense. Although broccoli and cauliflower are cruciferous vegetables, they don’t have a ton of bugs wanting to eat them so pesticides aren’t really that necessary.

I hope you found this useful.

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