2017 Dirty Dozen/Clean Fifteen

When the human genome was sequenced in 2003, researches learned that disease isn't hardwired into your DNA. But quite the opposite. Your DNA is heavily influenced by your lifestyle and environment. This is called epigenetics. And these epigentic factors such as environmental toxins heavily influence long-term health and disease.

We are exposed to environmental toxins everyday, many beyond are control, but we can control what we put into our bodies. This is why I recommend eating foods that are organically grown and preferably local but this can be expensive. For this reason, I love the list that the Environmental Working Group (EWG) releases each year.

EWG list the most toxic fruits and vegetables as The Dirty Dozen and those with the least amount of toxic residue as The Clean Fifteen. Using this list, you can save money by not having to buy organic fruits and vegetables that are listed on the Clean Fifteen. But you should make sure that any of the items on the Dirty Dozen are purchased as organic.

A couple of key finding by EWG.

  • More than 98 percent of samples of strawberries, spinach, peaches, nectarines, cherries and apples tested positive for residue of at least one pesticide.

  • A single sample of strawberries showed 20 different pesticides.

  • Spinach samples had, on average, twice as much pesticide residue by weight than any other crop.

For those with children, please be aware that children are more susceptible to the detrimental affects of pesticides.

In 2012, the American Academy of Pediatrics issued an important report that said children have "unique susceptibilities to [pesticide residues'] potential toxicity." The pediatricians' organization cited research that linked pesticide exposures in early life to "pediatric cancers, decreased cognitive function, and behavioral problems." It advised its members to urge parents to consult "reliable resources that provide information on the relative pesticide content of various fruits and vegetables."

You cannot wash your fruits and vegetables and remove toxins. When tested, the pesticide residues persisted on the produce even when washed and in some cases peeled.

For more information click on the following link:


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