I hear from a lot of you that although you buy lots of fresh fruits and vegetables – you primarily shop the perimeter of the grocery store – you don’t always, or even often, choose organic produce.
Well, in just one statistic, I want to show how important it is to buy organic.
68% of food samples measured by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) had detectible pesticide residues even after they were washed and peeled!
That means that over two-thirds of the non-organic produce you’re eating has pesticide residue which is dangerous and harmful to your body and your health.
The EWG also found that every sample of imported nectarines tested positive for pesticides, as well as 98% of apples, and 96% of imported plums.
The average imported nectarine had a much higher total weight of pesticides than any other food crop – pretty scary when you think about feeding nectarines to your children and your family.
Let’s run through some of the most harmful.
Many of you have probably heard of the Dirty Dozen, and that’s a great resource. Here’s a short list that’s easy to remember when you’re in the produce department.
The most contaminated fruits are:
- domestic blueberries
- imported nectarines
The most contaminated vegetables are:
- bell peppers
One easy way to think about it is that the thinner the skin on the fruit or veggie, the higher the rate of contaminants.
For example, bananas are less likely to contain pesticides than apples.
Let’s take a closer look at just one of those fruits on the list to get a sense of how harmful this can be.
Grapes had 15 different pesticides and herbicides detected in just a single sample.
In fact, grapes have more types of pesticides than any other produce with a total of 64 different pesticides! That really makes you think differently about your local wineries, doesn’t it?
My son Brayden LOVES grapes, but I will NEVER buy non-organic grapes for him after learning this information.
If you are a wine drinker, think about this for a second… Have you ever woken up with a hangover after just a glass of wine and wondered why?
Or maybe wine gives you a headache or makes you feel flush as soon as you drink it?
More often than not, it’s not because of the alcohol content (although alcohol is acidic and contains yeast and sugar). It’s actually from the herbicides, pesticides, fungicides, and the sulfates that are being put into the grapes.
So if you want to drink wine every now and then as part of the 20% acid-forming foods and drinks you consume, drink a good sustainable, organic wine that has no sulfates, no herbicides, no pesticides, and no fungicides.
On the veggie side, 96% of celery samples tested positive for pesticides and herbicides, with at least 13 different pesticides on a single sample of it. A single bell pepper sample was contaminated with at least 15 different pesticides.
When you add up all of these herbicides, pesticides, and fungicides on your food, it’s not hard to understand why our food today is so much less nutrient-dense than it was a few decades ago.
For instance, a head of broccoli today measured against a head of broccoli from thirty years ago contains 50% fewer nutrients.
And did you know that it takes 60 servings of spinach today to equal the mineral content in 1 serving of spinach in 1948 – how crazy is that!
Just the soil-depletion that these nasty chemicals cause alone is enough to make our food less nutritious. It strips away the mineral content, and combine that with acid rain and increased production for a growing population, it has become near IMPOSSIBLE to get the nutrition your body needs… EVEN WHEN YOU TRY!
So what can you do to ensure you stay away from pesticides?
The easy answer is buy organic. It’s important that you take the extra step and added expense and know that it’s the best way to go for your health and well-being. You’re worth it.
Unfortunately, it’s not always that simple.
You might want to take a supermarket’s word for it if it’s in the organic section, but there have been cases of stores misrepresenting organic and conventional produce.
Wal-Mart was sued a few years ago for mixing conventional fruits and vegetables in with the organics. So you have to be careful as a smart consumer.
Here’s a great bit of information on how to do that.
Every single fruit and vegetable has a SKU sticker on it. You’ve seen them, right?
• If a sticker begins with the number 9, it means it’s organic.
Use this to remember: 9 is fine. Organic.
• If a sticker begins with a number 8, it means that it’s genetically modified.
Use this to remember: 8, I hate. It’s GMO!
• If the sticker begins with any other number, like 3 or 4, it means that it was conventionally grown and is neither GMO or organic. More than likely with herbicides, pesticides, fungicides, and synthetic fertilizers. So that’s how you determine if something is really conventional or organic.
Another option that’s even better is to shop for produce at your local farmer’s market. The certified organic stands proudly advertise their status, and you can talk to the growers to find out what’s what.
There’s one last thing you can do to help your body out because even if you buy organic, if you eat out at all, you’re likely going to consume some of these nasty herbicides, pesticides, and fungicides. So you want to help your body neutralize that acid and sweep clean those chemicals as fast as possible.
AlkaMind Daily Greens and Alkamind Daily Minerals are going to do that for you. By taking Daily Minerals before bed, you’ll neutralize that acid while you sleep, and by taking Daily Greens first thing in the morning, you’ll aid your body’s ability to clean out any toxic chemicals.