By Dana Shultz for Diets in Review
There’s a common rule in the produce world: If it has a skin or is commonly eaten without peeling, you should probably opt for organic to avoid pesticides.
But thanks to the Environmental Working Group’s annual “Dirty Dozen” report, we have a much clearer picture of what those 12 dirty items are. However, this year, the report included two additions, which brings the list to 14 – or as we like to say “The Dirty Bakers Dozen + One.”
The annual report, as reported by CNN, is based on pesticide residue data that’s collected by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Food and Drug Administration. The samples were tested as they would normally be eaten – either washed or peeled.
Here’s the rundown on the new “Dirty Dozen,” plus two:
3. Sweet Bell Peppers
6. Imported nectarines
11. Domestic blueberries
13. Green Beans
14. Kale/collard greens
As well as the updated “Clean 15″:
2. Sweet Corn
6. Sweet peas
11. Domestic cantaloupe
12. Sweet potatoes
It’s important to pay attention to these updated lists as pesticide consumption can be extremely hazardous to a person’s health. According to a study from the Harvard School of Public Health, toxins can be connected to many diseases, including but not limited to cancer. And other studies have suggested that pesticide consumption can cause neurological developmental problems in infants.
So buy organic when shopping for items on the “Dirty 14″ whenever possible, as well as the “Clean 15″ as you can never be too safe. And for tips on how to go organic more affordably, check out this organic guide that includes tips on organic gardening and finding farmers markets and local co-ops.