Have you heard of the terms 'Dirty Dozen & Clean Fifteen' before?
It was a term created to identify the most sprayed fruits and vegetables in the United States of America.
On the Environmental Working Group (EWG)'s website, they publish an annual list of the Dirty Dozen & Clean 15. You can check that list here, it's been updated yearly since it began in 2004.
It's not just speculation either, all of the information is based on rigorous research and thousands of data collection points from the FDA (Food & Drug Administration), and the US Department of Agriculture.
For whatever reason, Australia hasn't officially joined the party, and we don't have the data available to properly determine what are the most and least sprayed produce around.
We have a solution for that which we will get to in a second, but first let's have a look at the US Dirty Dozen.
Again, unfortunately we don't have the data for an Aussie version, but it's safe to say - avoid these conventionally grown foods because we usually follow in America's footsteps with many things, including their destructive agricultural practices.
This list is accurate as of March 2021:
The Dirty Dozen List 2021:
- Kale/Collard Greens
- Bell Peppers & Hot Peppers (Capsicum and Chilli's)
These are the foods that are the highest sprayed and/or contain the most pesticide/insecticide residue.
As you'll see many of these foods have more porous or thin skin - which basically just absorbs that good old Monsanto goodness straight into 'em.
Next is the list of foods that contain the least sprays...
The Clean Fifteen List 2021
- Sweet Corn
- Sweet Peas (Frozen)
- Kiwi Fruit
I personally wouldn't agree with the Broccoli because I know they are heavily sprayed here in Australia, but this is the list of produce that is said to be free from or containing minimal contamination.
So we're safe if we eat from the Clean 15 and wash the Dirty Dozen properly with vinegar or baking soda or organic veggie wash right?
Just rinse the punnet of strawberries under the running water and it's all washed out yeah?
When you choose to eat conventional, you're taking the risk of consuming potential poisonous pesticides, insecticides and more.
Pesticides often contain an oily like substance so the rain doesn't wash off the pesticides from the fruit/veg, so it usually stays on for a very long time.
Even then... even if you have washed your veggies/fruit thoroughly... often the chemicals actually GROW INTO the food.
Remember those science experiments from school where you would put celery in a jar and add red food dye to it? The celery becomes red, or blue or whatever colour you choose.
Can you then get the dye out? Maybe with some magic from Hogwarts. The celery has become infused with the dye.
Same with pesticides. Our food takes nutrients from its environment including the soil, the rain and more. So if you are eating conventional food, just assume it is sprayed to the core.
Sure it's good to keep in mind a 'clean 15' and 'dirty dozen', but you know what is even better?
Ordering organic or spray free. It's really that simple.
If you've seen one of our recent blog posts you'll see a link to a video where a conventional family ate only organic for a few weeks. In that time their pesticide load dropped dramatically.
It really is the only way for long term and sustainable health.
You won't get the 'risk' of the accumulative effect of too many chemicals building up in your body, plus it tastes way better anyway. Don't believe the media/news when they say organic/spray-free food doesn't taste better.
Obviously they haven't tried it before, or maybe they are so desensitised in their tastebuds they can't even noticed.
Anyway, we'd better stop before the rant continues, we get fired up about this stuff...
We hope this gives you the information you were looking for and wish you amazing health and happiness!