By Amber Mills.
You have probably read about the negative affects that chemical pesticides and hormones can have on your health and how eating organically is better for your health. For those of you who are on a budget, you have probably wondered how you can eat organically without going over your grocery budget. When you decide to make the switch to organic food, you don’t have to buy everything organic all at once. Here is a list of the top 12 foods to buy organic, these are sometimes referred to as “The Dirty Dozen”:
1. Apples 2. Celery 3. Cherry Tomatoes 4. Cucumber 5. Grapes 6. Hot Peppers 7. Nectarines 8. Peaches 9. Potatoes 10. Spinach 11. Strawberries 12. Sweet Bell Peppers
The above fruits and vegetables are listed in order from the greatest level of pesticide contamination to the lowest.
Another list to familiarize yourself with is “The Clean 15”. Below is a list of 15 foods that are low in pesticides. If buying organic is nearly impossible, you can eat more of these 15 foods and reduce your pesticide exposure. Remember to wash and scrub produce and remove peels and outer leaves to cut down on the pesticide residue you eat.
1. Asparagus 2. Avocado 3. Cabbage 4. Cantaloupe 5. Sweet Corn 6. Eggplant 7. Grapefruit 8. Kiwi 9. Mango 10. Mushrooms 11. Onions 12. Papaya 13. Pineapple 14. Sweet Peas (Frozen) 15. Sweet Potatoes
The above fruits and vegetables are listed in order from the lowest level of pesticide contamination to the highest.
When buying organic foods on a budget, remember the following:
- compare prices (don’t just look in your local grocery store but check out local farms and farmer’s markets)
- buy what’s on sale and use recipes based on what’s on sale buy items in season (strawberries are going to cost more in January than in June)
- buy in bulk (wholesale store’s like Costco can offer great deals on organic products)
- if you have the space and time, consider starting your own organic garden
Following the tips from above can allow you to fill your grocery cart with more organic foods and keep you from going over budget.