The Dirty Dozen & The Clean Fifteen | rolala loves

The Dirty Dozen & The Clean Fifteen

April 30, 2018
EWG The Dirty Dozen, How to Remove Pesticides From Your Fruits and Vegetables


Fresh fruits and vegetables are an important part of a healthy diet due to their many nutritional benefits. While they may be may good for you, the pesticides that are used on them are not. used to to prevent pest infestations and weeds, pesticides are primarily applied during the cultivation of crops and in some cases may leave behind residue. The EWG (Environmental Working Group) recently released their annual Shoppers' Guide to Pesticides in Produce aka The Dirty Dozen which lists the twelve foods with the highest concentration of pesticide residues. For the third year in a row, strawberries topped the list. A third of strawberry samples tested were found to contain 10 or more pesticides. Spinach occupies another year in the second spot with nearly twice as much pesticide residue by weight than any other crop on the list.  High levels of pesticides are toxic and can present potential health risks, particularly to children and those with health issues. In studies, they have been show to create severe disruptions in nervous, endocrine, reproductive and immune system functions and increase the risks of cancer.

EWG’s list of the “Dirty Dozen” produce includes:
Strawberries  •  Spinach  •  Nectarines  •  Apples  •  Grapes  •  Peaches
Cherries  •  Pears  •  Tomatoes  •  Celery  •  Potatoes  •  Sweet Bell Peppers

While the presence of pesticide residue in food does not automatically imply a health risk, being aware of foods that have higher levels of contamination as well as being careful where you buy it from helps. Purchasing certified organic produce whenever possible is one way to reduce pesticides but that may not always be viable due to costs or accessibility. Another way which you should be doing anyway is to thoroughly wash all your fruits and vegetables before consumption. Almost 75 to 80 percent of pesticide residues can be removed by washing them in cold water. Soaking your produce in solution of distilled white vinegar and water in a 1/5 proportion for an hour is a good way to ensure the removal of all the nasties. This also has the added benefit of extending the life of your fruits and vegetables if you don't eat them all right away. Pay special attention to anything with crevices and anything where the skin is consumed.



EWG The Clean Fifteen, How to Remove Pesticides From Your Fruits and Vegetables


EWG’s list of the “Clean Fifteen” produce includes:
Avocados  •  Sweet Corn  •  Pineapples  •  Cabbages  •  Onions  •  Sweet Peas (frozen)  •  Papayas  •  Asparagus
Mangoes  •  Eggplants  •  Honeydew Melons  •  Kiwis  •  Cantaloupes  •  Cauliflower  •  Broccoli

It's not all bad news. At the same time, the EWG also releases a list of the 15 "cleanest" fruit and vegetables found to contain the least pesticides known as The Clean Fifteen. In order to create the list, the EWG looked at over 10,000 samples that the USDA and the Food and Drug Administration took from popular fruits and vegetables. This list is meant as a guideline and not meant to discourage people from eating fruits and vegetables. The EWG actually still recommends consuming produce from the “Dirty Dozen” over unhealthy processed foods. When it comes down to it, knowledge and awareness are a consumer's best friend. The safe bet is to always wash your produce whether it's organic or not. I even wash the prewashed bags of greens I get for salads for good measure.

22 comments on "The Dirty Dozen & The Clean Fifteen"
  1. Very informative Rowena. Trader Joes is my grocery store of choice. Good to know about the distilled white vinegar and water. I like the captions clean 15 and dirty dozen, :). Have a great week.

    https://www.fashionablyidu.com/

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  2. Awesome sharing, dear! Gonna check them out. xoxo

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  3. This is such a helpful post! I usually don't buy organic since it can be expensive, but now I'll try to for the produce in the dirty dozen. Also thank you for the tip about soaking them in a vinegar solution. I'm clueless when it comes to washing produce so this tip is super helpful!

    Jenny // Geeky Posh

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  4. I love posts like this, they're so useful. It's a shame that fruits such as strawberries feature on the dirty dozen because I always do love to snack on some strawberries. Good news for pineapple and avocado though, I think this is definitely an excuse for me to go out and bulk buy them lol.

    Have a great week!
    Amy; Wandering Everywhere

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  5. I´d never eat anything without washing it first, that should be basic knowledge. Whenever possible I buy organic, which of course does not mean that you are safe from pesticides, but helps reduce the amount, and buy seasonal. Strawberries outside the season are usually much worse as they need more help to actually grow.

    Anne|Linda, Libra, Loca

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  6. Super!! It's important to steer clear of the pesticides, so gross. Great post doll x

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  7. You should always wash Vegetables and Fruits very well. I'm glad you brought this to discuss because some of the sickness could be the cause of pesticides. Have a great day.

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  8. Morning Rowena! I know, I try to buy only from organic produce, every Sunday here where I live there it a local market with organic products which are very good and healthy. I love broccoli and asparagus, while I am disappointed by strawberries, neither taste as sweet and delish as before! xo

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  9. Ack! Our family loves everything on that Dirty Dozen list...alas, only broccoli is something we really eat from the Clean 15. Thanks for this, chingu. I didn't know about that vinegar bath as I usually just do the cold water wash!

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  10. Very useful post Rowena, I always wash the fruits and vegetables properly before storing them in refrigerator. You have given some useful tips dear <3
    Have a happy Monday dear <3
    http://www.rakhshanda-chamberofbeauty.com/

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  11. Hmm, we actually eat many of the dirty dozen foods quite regularly! I used to be better soaking my produce in a vinegar mixture, but have to start doing it again! Luckily I also usually peel away some of skins which also gets rid of some of the nastiness. It's sad how much work we need to do in order to eat something natural right?

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  12. I read about this the other day.. it's a sad state when eating something as simple as fruits and vegetables becomes such a stressful ordeal.

    http://www.henatayeb.blogspot.com

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  13. I heard about the vinegar and water trick, I need to try it. My mother is allergic to pesticide, so I learned to be extra careful during the years. She only eats organic food from sources she can trust ( like when she actually knows a person selling it). I think it's important to submerge the fruit & veggies in water and really wash them thoroughly. A quick wash probably won't do much good. Good to know about the dirty dozen. I heard strawberries can be tricky because water just flies off them, one needs to really submerge them in water multiple times- that's how I wash them anyway. Great to know about the clean fifteen too.

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  14. This is a great read, Rowena! Unfortunately, most of my favorites are in the dirty dozen! :o It's interesting that oranges are not includes in either group. Speaking of oranges, have you tried Cara Cara oranges? I don't enjoy citrus that much but the ones from Freshdirect are out of this world sweet and delicious so we ended up ordering a whole box.

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  15. This is such an interesting topic and a thought-provoking one too! The debate of pesticides is a strong and heated one though that's for sure, and so it's definitely something we should start thinking about on a large scale over upcoming years! Have an amazing week Rowena :)

    Gabrielle | A Glass Of Ice x

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  16. I wonder if the same is true in Europe? I buy mostly organic but I should pay extra attention to washing before consuming.

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  17. I don't always buy organic because of budget reasons but every time they are on sale, I'll snag some up. Shame about the dirty dozen list, there are a lot of my regulars listed there. I do wash and rinse everything before cooking and eating so hopefully that helps.

    Shireen⎜Reflection of Sanity

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  18. This is definitely a conversation that I often have with my friends and family. I typically buy organic when I can but I am fortunate to also live near sustainble farms to buy organic, as it's less expensive. This is actually why I started to have a garden again after my mum survived cancer, we've harvested quite a lot of our own produce last year. I do clean everything before eating. Wow, washing off your food should be a no-brainer, it's outrageous to think that there are people who don't clean food before eating! I hope you have a great week Rowena.

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  19. It's really important Rowena. And with the whole Romaine Lettuce debacle it's actually scary. People have died!
    http://www.averysweetblog.com/

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  20. That food looks good enough to eat. I want it all. Thanks for posting!

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  21. Great post and informative! We always wash our produce. I really need to start gardening again as organic fruits and veggies can be so expensive. Thanks for sharing!

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