A photo diary of fruits and vegetables known as The Dirty Dozen™.
The Dirty Dozen™ is comprised based on an annual analysis by the Environmental Working Group [EWG] using data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Food and Drug Administration that determines that amount of pesticide residue that remains on produce after normal cleaning. The Dirty Dozen™ list the 12 top fresh fruits and vegetables with the highest loads of pesticide residues with #1 being the produce with the highest pesticide residue load.
Pesticides are chemicals that kill pests that extend past destructive insects, worms, fungus, etc. Of course, some of these insects, bacteria, fungus, and microbes are bad, but some are good and beneficial for the environment and are beneficial for our health and the health of other living things. Think bees 🐝 and monarch butterflies 🦋 .
In addition, these chemical injure or kill animals, as well as kill bacteria and microbes non-indiscriminately.
From the EWG:
Pesticide residue on foods means that one is eating pesticides. Remember that the suffix -cide means "to kill."
This begs the question: Are we killing more than the bugs outside? It would seem logical that we maybe killing our "bugs" on the inside of us as well. Good "bugs" live in our small and large intestines to keep us healthy by supporting our immune system, converting nutrients into bio-variable vitamins, minerals, and amino acids, as well as creating certain B vitamins. It would appear logical that pesticides will kill your gut flora. It is now known that our gut flora "interacts with both innate and adaptive immune system" and that "intestinal microflora has protective, metabolic, trophic and immunological functions" (F. Purchiaroni et al, 2013).
The term pesticide is a generic term can include any of the following: herbicide, insecticides nematicide, molluscicide, piscicide, avicide, rodenticide, bactericide, insect repellent, animal repellent, antimicrobial, fungicide, disinfectant (antimicrobial), and sanitizer.
EWG creates an annual Shopper's Guide to Pesticides in Produce™ that lists the Dirty Dozen™ fruits and vegetables with the most pesticide residues, as well as the Clean Fifteen™, for which few, if any, residues were detected. Please see "ALL 48 FRUITS AND VEGETABLES WITH PESTICIDE RESIDUE DATA" at https://www.ewg.org/foodnews/dirty_dozen_list.php.
The 2017 list includes, in order:
strawberries, spinach, nectarines, apples, peaches, celery, grapes, pears, cherries, tomatoes, sweet bell peppers, and potatoes.
All photos in this blog post are in the Public Domain and obtained via WikiPedia Commons.
11. SWEET BELL PEPPERS
Better than just buying organic, one can grow their own. A great YouTube channel for tips for all levels of gardeners - that is, those new to gardening to seasoned green thumbers - "GrowingYourGreens".
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