The Dirty Dozen- Avoiding Pesticides

It is the opinion of many well known and respected experts that toxins and chemicals have replaced bacteria and viruses as the main threat to human health.  This is very true where pesticides are present.  Pesticides have been linked to neuropathy, leukemia, cancers, spontaneous abortion, decreased fertility, compromised immune systems and the list goes on and on.  So why, why, why do we continue to ingest poison on a daily basis with seemingly no concern? 

The answer to that question is almost always without fail, "Because organic costs too much!"  And no matter how many times I hear that answer it saddens me.  I know it is true that organic costs "more."  But "too much" tells me that person has already put a certain value on their health, and it's value is not much to them.

There are so many reasons why organic costs what it does, and they are truly viable reasons.  First, organic farming is done on a much smaller scale and is much more labor intensive than conventional farming.  The simple rules of supply and demand apply to organic farming also.  However, organic supply is growing so we can expect the prices of organic to slowly go down simultaneously. 

Second, conventional farming is usually subsidized by the U.S. keeping the cost of conventionally grown food artificially low, meaning the prices do not reflect the true cost of growing the food.  Organic farms are not subsidized; this means the prices will reflect the true cost of bringing it to market. 

When switching over to organic produce I feel it is important to take the "Dirty Dozen" list with you shopping.  This list was compiled based on an analysis of more than 100,000 U.S. government pesticide test results.  These 12 fruits and vegetables continually tested too high to be consumed safely and therefore should ALWAYS be bought only organic.  This does not mean the others are entirely safe, but it is a great starting point.

And here they are, the "Dirty Dozen"....

Bell Peppers
Grapes (Imported)

This produce usually will cost about 50% more, but is well worth every penny.  After all, it's all about how much we VALUE our health.  And how exactly do you put a price tag on that?

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