Every year the nonprofit organization, Environmental Working Group, creates a list of fruits and vegetables that have the highest pesticide residues. They suggest buying only organic versions of these foods. They believe doing so will reduce your pesticide consumption by nearly 80%. The Dirty Dozen consists of:
According to the Food and Drug Administration, 36 pesticides are found on apples. That’s more than on any other fruit or vegetable. An apple a day keeps the doctor away, but stick to the organic
Although the Dirty Dozen lists is updated annually, these sweet treats are always on the list. That’s because strawberries grow close to the ground, prompting the use of lots of pesticides. More than 40 different pesticides have been found on strawberries and that pesticide residue remains on berries sold at market, making purchasing organic strawberries your safest bet.
Another fruit that is always on the dirty dozen list, imported grapes can have more than 50 pesticides. Buy only organic or avoid imported grapes entirely, because imported grapes may be fumigated with highly toxic methylbromide and are contaminated to the core.
USDA tests have found more than 60 different pesticides on celery and is the vegetable most likely to contain pesticide residues. In fact, 82% of samples have tested positive.
Peaches are treated with multiple pesticides which get soaked into the fruit because of it’s delicate skin and therefore, cannot be removed by washing. More than 60 pesticides have been found on peaches, so it is highly recommend to only eat organic.
Leading the leafy green pesticide residue category with more than 50 different pesticides is spinach. This leafy green is sprayed with some of the most potent pesticides and therefore get highly contaminated.
Sweet bell peppers
Nearly 50 different pesticides have been detected on them, because conventionally grown sweet bell peppers are frequently sprayed with insecticides. Like peaches, their thin skin allows the pesticide to soak right in.
These are among the most highly contaminated tree fruits. 33 pesticides have been found on them and many are harmful and often promote cancer.
This hydrating veggie may be laced with as many as 86 different pesticides, all found on the skin. Therefore peeling the skin may reduce your chances of eating the contaminants.
With 35 different pesticide residues being found on these, it’s best to stick with organic.
Snap peas (imported)
78 pesticide residues have been found by the USDA Pesticide Data Program. These pesticides cannot be removed by washing. Snap peas are one of the easiest vegetables to grow at home, so buy organic or try growing them for yourself.
The average potato had more pesticides by weight than any other food. These root veggies are sprayed with insecticides and grow in soil treated with fungicides. More than 35 pesticide residues have been detected on them.