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Advice Column: Does Everything I Buy Need to Be Organic?

October 17, 2013 by  


By Noor H. Salem

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noorsalem

Noor Salem

Question:

I’m trying to let me kids eat healthier and I’m getting confused what I need to buy organic? Does everything with an organic label mean it’s healthy? How about produce?

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Answer:

With our growing market and superstores, it’s no surprise that it could get confusing when deciding what to put on your plate and what to keep on the store shelves. My first advice is, when it comes to packaged food if it says organic on the label don’t easily fall for it. Many companies take advantage of the word “organic” “all natural” and “whole grain” etc. When shopping for fruits and vegetables many have heavy amounts of pesticides and chemicals, so you’re better off purchasing organic.  Below is the list of the dirty dozen, which are the top fruits and vegetables in terms of pesticide content. These pesticides should not be taken lightly and have been proven to cause cancer, disease, and issues with cell growth.  My advice, buy these foods organic whenever you can. If you can’t buy organic food because of the main complaint that they are cost, then peel your apples and potatoes, and remove the outer layers of lettuce and other greens.

Apples  
Celery
Strawberries
Peaches
Spinach
Nectarines- imported
Grapes- imported
Sweet Bell Peppers
Potatoes
Blueberries-domestic
Lettuce
Kale/Collard Greens

But my advice does not end with bad news. There has also been a list provided of the clean fifteen, the top fruits and vegetables you don’t need to buy organic. These are mostly because we normally peel them in order to eat them, like bananas, watermelon and avocadoes. Unless you’re eating the peel, you can definitely by these produce non-organic. So feel fairly comfortable buying and eating these without worrying about your health.

Onions
Corn
Pineapple
Avocado
Asparagus
Sweet Pea
Mango
Eggplant
Cantaloupe- domestic
Kiwi
Cabbage
Watermelon
Sweet Potatoes
Grapefruit
Mushrooms

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