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List: Posted: 12/10/10
If you buy organic food, you’re in good company. Americans are buying more organic meats, fruits, and vegetables than ever before. Consumers are not only concerned about their health, but also the health of animals and the environment. Animals and the earth are happier when fewer pollutants, pesticides, and antibiotics are used.
If you struggle with the cost of organic food, you can get more bang for your buck by following a few simple tips. The Environmental Working Group publishes a yearly “Dirty Dozen” organic food guide to help consumers determine what kinds of produce are covered in pesticides (the residue on produce is internal, so you can’t wash it off). The worst five on the current list are celery, peaches, strawberries, apples, and blueberries. If you’re going to buy any of these, buy organic, or you risk high levels of chemical residue entering your body. Organic food is clean food.
On the other hand, produce like onions, avocados, corn, pineapples, and mangoes are part of the Clean Fifteen. They have thicker skins, so chemical residue is less of an issue. Generally, anything with a thick rind is safe to buy in its conventional form. If you have the means to buy every kind of organic food, you will still be doing the environment a favor, but it’s less vital with some kinds of food.
Meat and cheese that are certified organic are ideal if you are worried about your intake of antibiotics. Animals on organic farms get better treatment than on factory farms. You can combat animal cruelty by buying organic eggs, as chickens on organic farms get more room to roam. Organic food is the most humanitarian choice at the supermarket.
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