If you think washing and peeling your favorite fruits and veggies will clean them from pesticide contamination, you need to hear about this latest report on the “Dirty Dozen”.
Every year, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) issues a report of the 12 most pesticide-laden foods.
And this year – just like last year – the top offender on this year’s list is the beloved strawberry, with traces of nearly eight different pesticides found, on average.
Some of them are nerve gases – poisons developed for chemical warfare that were subsequently banned by the Geneva Conventions. And those are just the pesticides that could be detected by the tests.
It may shock you to hear that, but according the food safety standards of countries like the US that’s actually legal. In fact, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says that you can safely eat foods with these high levels of pesticide contaminants.
But we know better. Even small doses of toxins can be harmful. Exposure to pesticides have been linked to dementia, cancer, developmental issues, reproductive problems… the list goes on.
One of the pesticides found this year on 75 per cent of tested samples of spinach – which moved up to be the second dirtiest type of produce on this year’s list – has been banned in the UK and European Union and has been linked to neurological issues.
And DDT – which has been banned in the US for a long time – also showed up in half the spinach samples that were tested.
The really scary news with this year’s list is that it’s only getting worse. Pears, for example, had fallen off the list in previous years – but the latest tests show that both the number of pesticides and the amount of their residues on fruits and vegetables have more than doubled since 2010.
You could choose foods highlighted on the “Clean Fifteen” list – like avocados, cabbage, and asparagus – but they’re not exactly “clean,” either.
Many of them showed residue from at least one type of pesticide – and that’s after being washed.
In the end, the best way to keep enjoying your favorite fruits and veggies is to buy ones that have been certified organic. Pesticide use is forbidden on any organically-grown foods.
And not only are organics safer, but they’ve also been shown to be healthier than their non-organic counterparts.
Wishing you the best of health,
Dr. Glenn S. Rothfeld
Nutrition & Healing
EWG’s 2017 Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce, ewg.org/foodnews/dirty_dozen_list.php, ewg.org/foodnews/clean_fifteen_list.php
EU-Banned Pesticide Found on Spinach, Now Second on Dirty Dozen, ewg.org/foodnews/spinach.php
Pears, Now With an Extra Helping of Pesticides, Join the Dirty Dozen, ewg.org/foodnews/pears.php
Pesticides + Poison Gases = Cheap, Year-Round Strawberries, ewg.org/foodnews/strawberries.php