The Dirty Dozen is an American war film from 1967 directed by Robert Aldrich that takes place in England during the spring of 1944, when the Allied Forces are preparing for the D-Day invasion.
Fast forward 43 years, and you'll find a remake of 1967's #1 film moneymaker.
This time, however, The Dirty Dozen is a film that hits closer to home, featuring the 12 fruits and veggies most contaminated with pesticide residues.
As the summer is quickly upon us, 4T4F has decided to devote this blog post to fruits and veggies, since resisting the crisp, fresh taste of our photosynthesizing friends is clearly not an option...
If you follow the USDA 5 daily servings of fruits and veggies, you could consume an average of 10 pesticides per day. (Think about that before you bite into that abnormally large, fire-truck red strawberry!) While not everyone can afford to go 100% organic every time you hit the supermarket, taking the splurge on the following 12 fruits and veggies could lower your daily pesticide intake from these foods to 2 per day:
1. Celery64 pesticides were detected on this entrant on to the Dirty Dozen, and because celery has no protective skin, it's almost impossible to wash off the chemicals that are used on conventional crops.
If you can't buy organic, cleaner alternatives include: broccoli, radishes, and onions.
2. Peaches62 pesticides on this furry fruit make them not much better than celery.
If you can't buy organic, cleaner alternatives include: watermelon or citrus fruits (ie: oranges, grapefruits).
3. Strawberries59 pesticides have been detected on the residues of this fruit, and if you buy strawberries out of season, you're more likely to buy them imported from countries whose pesticide restrictions may be far less stringent.
If you can't buy organic, cleaner alternatives include: kiwi and pineapples.
4. Apples42 pesticides for this fall favorite. Peeling an apple strips away many of its beneficial nutrients and doesn't completely eliminate chemical residues, so it's better to go organic when it comes to apples.
If you can't buy organic, cleaner alternatives include: watermelon and bananas.
5. BlueberriesComing in with 52 pesticides, blueberries are one of the dirtiest berries on the market!
6. NectarinesWhile this fruit might be bald, you'll still find yourself in a hairy situation with its 33 different types of pesticides.
If you can't buy organic, cleaner alternatives include: papaya, watermelon, and mango.
7. Bell PeppersThe thin skins of bell peppers are no match for the 49 pesticides found on them. In addition, bell peppers are often sprayed with insecticides.
If you can't buy organic, cleaner alternatives include: green peas, broccoli, and cabbage.
8. SpinachDon't tell Popeye the Sailor, but his muscle food is laced with as many as 48 different types of pesticides.
9. KaleWhile kale has traditionally been hardy veggie that rarely falls prey to pests and disease, high amounts of pesticide residue were found this year.
If you can't buy organic, cleaner alternatives include: cabbage, asparagus, and broccoli.
10. Cherries42 pesticides for these fruits, and not even locally grown cherries were safe in this round of government testing.
If you can't buy organic, cleaner alternatives include: raspberries and cranberries.
11. PotatoesAmerica's favorite spud rolls in with 37 different types of pesticides.
If you can't buy organic, cleaner alternatives include: eggplant and broccoli.
12. Grapes (imported)34 different pesticides here, and no amount of washing or peeling can eliminate the contamination that seeps through a grape's thin skin. Don't forget that wine is also made from grapes!
If you can't buy organic, cleaner alternatives include: kiwi and raspberries.
But let's not lose all faith in fruits and veggies! Here's a list of 12 of the least contaminated fruits and veggies:
- Sweet corn (Frozen)
- Sweet peas (Frozen)
So there you have it - this week's 4T4F multiplied by 6! Eat fresh, eat healthy, and eat food! :D
Enjoy the summer!!
Please note: The Dirty Dozen list of most pesticide contaminate food has been prepared by the Environmental Working Group annually since 1995, and reflects only measurable pesticide residues on the parts of foods normally consumed (ie: after being washed and peeled).