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Dirty Dozen: Strawberries Top the List of Pesticide Laden Produce

There is bad news for lovers of strawberries and buyers of conventionally grown produce. A recent report by the Environment Working Group (EWG) listed the fruits and vegetables most laden with toxic chemicals. One sample strawberry contained 20 different pesticides.  

As reported by CNN, the “Dirty Dozen” list of produce contains some of the most popular food items in the world. The list of suspects is almost unchanged from last year and the pesticide situation will grow worse until sustainable agricultural practices are more widely implemented.

This list is a cautionary tale. It is possible to avoid all processed foods and still compromise your health. This is why it is so important to avoid conventionally grown produce and consume food that was raised using safe agricultural methods. 

Fortunately, most people tend to pick and choose which fruits and vegetables to buy organic. Knowing which items are most contaminated helps you to prioritize which foods to buy organic and which are safe to purchase conventionally grown.

According to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 75 percent of the U.S. population has detectable levels of organophosphate pesticides in their urine, and unless you're a farmer, your diet is one of the most likely routes of exposure. Eating organic is one of the best ways to lower your overall pesticide burden. 

Remember that eating vegetables, even if they're not organic, is better than not eating vegetables at all. However, when you need to prioritize, refer to the Dirty Dozen list and buy those organic as much as possible. If you shop at farmer's markets, which I strongly recommend, you can also ask the farmer directly about pesticide usage. My nutrition plan provides additional cutting edge information on this subject and can help you avoid navigate the dangers of the modern diet. 
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