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Organic Overload? 12 Foods You Should Never Cheap-Out On. by Jessica Boscarini

by Jessica Boscarini, posted to Food & Drink

Feeling the effects of Organic Overload? While most of us understand this, or are at least vaguely aware and therefore, more conscious of what it is we put in our bodies, the fact that much of the Organic labeled products are 2x more expensive than the regular stuff, makes it hard to justify making ... More »

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No matter what the variety, apples are known to be extremely contaminated by a whole plethora of pesticides. Unfortunately, applesauce and apple juice are also known to have high amounts of pesticides in them. All these products should always be bought organic, especially if you are giving them to your kids!

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Celery is a seasoned-vet when it comes to being part of the Dirty Dozen. With over 60 pesticide residues found on this vegetable, this should be a must on your list of organic go-to's.

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Strawberries are prone to fungus and therefore, are also prone to getting heavily sprayed with pesticides. While fresh berries seem to have more than 60 varieties, frozen strawberries usually contain a good deal less.

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Peaches have more than 60 pesticides packed on their delicate flesh and skin, with nearly as many found in pre-packed serving packs. However, canned peaches seem to have much fewer, although I probably wouldn't risk it.

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Out of all leafy greens, spinach seems to have the worst case of pesticide residue blues, with nearly 50 different kinds. And while frozen spinach seems to have nearly as many, canned spinach seems to have fewer that have been detected.

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Nectarines (Imported)

Imported nectarines seem to have a much higher residue profile than home-grown nectarines do. However, because of their thin skin, I prefer to buy all of my nectarines in the organic aisle.

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Grapes (Imported)

Imported grapes have long been touted for their high pesticide-residue amounts. Not surprisingly, raisins (dried grapes) are also known to be highly contaminated. Since wine is made from grapes, you may want to consider buying this organic as well. At least when it comes to imported varieties.

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Bell Peppers

Not all peppers are considered to be uber-contaminated; mainly just the sweet ones. This includes red, yellow, and orange. However, if they are available, try to buy all peppers organic, as they are very thin-skinned and tend to be susceptible to pesticides just like the sweet ones are.

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Because of the way potatoes are grown, they are much more prone to pesticides than many other vegetables are. However, many argue that sweet potatoes have less contamination and are a better choice. I still buy organic sweet potatoes though. They aren't much more expensive and I believe it's better to be safe than sorry.

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Fresh blueberries are usually the biggest culprits, while frozen blueberries have proved to be a bit less contaminated. However, most all berries, even though they are not on the dirty dozen list this year, are also covered in pesticides and their residues.

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Leafy greens are typically doused in pesticides, with more than 50 being identified.

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Although a hardier vegetable, Kale still has been found to have loads of pesticide residue in the past couple years. Collard greens are a similar vegetable that should also be considered when buying organic.

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