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The ABC’s of Eating Organic

By Debra Rodzinak

If the thought of shopping for organic food evokes images of you standing in the grocery store for hours while reading labels on foods that you don’t really want to eat anyway, don’t worry.  Here is an easy way to begin to eat organic.  Remember, baby steps.

 A Is for Apple

Unfortunately, we all know that those perfectly round, blemish-free apples we buy in the grocery store are usually covered in pesticides.  The Food and Drug Administration says, of all the fruits and vegetables grown and sold in stores, apples contain the most pesticides of them all.  In one tested apple, scientists found up to seven different chemicals on a single apple.  Yuck!

If you can’t find organic in your local store, look for apples from New Zealand.  They treat their apples with half as many pesticides as the ones grown in the United States.  Way to go New Zealand!

B Is for Baby

Baby foods contain pureed versions of the foods we eat.  Green beans, apples, pears, and other fruits and vegetables tend to have chemical residue on them, even after being washed.  Since a baby’s immune, nervous, and other vital systems are in the developmental stage, we should try to limit, if not cut out completely, the number of toxins that are ingested by our little ones. 

A good alternative is organic baby food.  If organic baby food is not sold at your store, look for organic fruits and vegetables and make your own!  All you need is a blender.

B Is Also for Butter

Dairy products like butter and milk comes from cows.  Unfortunately, these bovine are subjected to growth hormones and antibiotics.  The grain that they eat is also treated with chemicals.  The organic butter and milk products available ensure that the cows that produce the milk are fed with chemical-free grain.

C Is for Cucumber

The Environmental Working Group released a survey that ranked cucumbers as second in cancer risk.  This public-interest group also noted that cucumbers have a waxy coating that also may contain chemicals.  In the “most contaminated food” category, cucumbers were ranked 12th overall.  If you can’t find organic cucumbers, just make sure to peel them first.

Once you begin to realize how many different chemicals are used on our foods, you will jump at the opportunity to eat organic every chance you get.  But if you are new to the organic scene, just remember your ABCs.  Your body will thank you for the change.

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