Wednesday, December 21, 2011

When to buy Organic Produce

Organic produce is more expensive than conventional produce.  What are paying extra for and why should you? Conventional farming uses pesticides or neurotoxins that destroy the central nervous systems of various pests to control their crops and have a higher yield.  Every time you eat food from these farms you ingest small amounts of pesticides.  These farmers also use chemicals to ripen produces prematurely.  When produce is ripened early it loses the benefits of absorbing more vitamins, nutrients, and minerals from the sun and soil.  We need our food to be as natural as possible.  Organic farmers allow produce to ripen on its own and studies show that the produce from these farms have much higher mineral and vitamin content.
Organic farming is also eco-conscious.  It uses less fuel and energy and is more "green".  The soil is not filled with chemicals and can be used again for future crops.  Organic farming focuses on healthy produce instead of mass quantity.  
I know not everyone can afford to always buy organic so here is a list of produce that should always be  organic because the toxicity levels have been proven to be the highest.

12 Most Contaminated
  • Peaches
  • Apples
  • Sweet Bell Peppers
  • Celery
  • Nectarines
  • Strawberries
  • Cherries
  • Pears
  • Grapes (Imported)
  • Spinach
  • Lettuce
  • Potatoes
If you must purchase conventional produce the following list are the least contaminated and best to buy conventional.  Always clean your produce with a fruit and vegetable cleaner available at most health food stores or make your own cleaner  3/4 cup apple cider vinegar and 1 gallon of water and soak the vegetables for at least a half hour.

12 Least Contaminated
  • Onions
  • Avocado
  • Sweet Corn (Frozen)
  • Pineapples
  • Mango
  • Asparagus
  • Sweet Peas (Frozen)
  • Kiwi Fruit
  • Bananas
  • Cabbage
  • Broccoli
  • Papaya
The last thing I want to mention is that even better than organic produce is produce from a local farm or CSA.  These farms usually don't use pesticides or herbicides but because they are small can't afford the organic stamp.  Support your local farmers and you will help the environment and get the freshest produce available.
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