Don't Eat That Apple

At least, without scrubbing it.  Did you know that apples have the most pesticide residue of any fruit?  That's right.  Each time you eat even a washed and peeled apple -- and don't even think about eating one that's not -- pesticides are seeping into your body.  Almost 100% (92%) of apples test positive for one or two pesticides, according to USA Today.

While the government claims the level is not enough to kill anyone, who wants to eat even a smidgen of Round Up?  

Pesticides are known to be toxic to the nervous system, cause cancer, disrupt hormones and cause brain damage in children, USA Today reports. Pregnant women are advised to avoid foods containing pesticides. A study by Harvard School of Public Health found children exposed to pesticides had a higher risk of developing attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

And "produce washes"?  Forget about it. Washing with them is unlikely to help remove pesticides because they're taken up by the entire plant and reside on more than just the skin, one report says.

Want to know the other "Dirty Dozen", as they've been called by groups which monitor this? 

After apples, in order of toxicity, come celery, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, grapes, hot peppers, nectarines (imported), peaches, potatoes, spinach, strawberries, sweet bell peppers, kale/collard greens, and summer squash.

Want to know some healthy fruits and vegetables that don't contain as many pesticides?  Try asparagus, avocados, cabbage, cantaloupe, sweet corn (my favorite), eggplant, grapefruit, kiwi, mangos, mushrooms, onions, papaya, pineapple, sweet (or frozen) peas, and sweet potatoes.

So are you doomed if you eat the Dirty Dozen?  Of course not. But consider buying organic for some of the more toxic ones.  And really scrub those ones you don't.


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