The Dangers of Pesticides in Your Food

How Clean is Your Diet?

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) in Washington, D.C., has developed the Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides based on data from nearly 87,000 tests for pesticide residues in produce between 2000-2007 and collected by the USDA and the FDA.

Why Should You Care About Pesticides?

The growing consensus among scientists is that small doses of pesticides and other chemicals can cause lasting damage to human health, especially during fetal development and early childhood. Scientists now know enough about the long-term consequences of ingesting these powerful chemicals to advise that we minimize our consumption of pesticides.

What’s the Difference?

EWG research has found that people who eat the 12 most contaminated fruits and vegetables consume an average of 10 pesticides a day. Those who eat the 15 least contaminated fruits and vegetables ingest fewer than two pesticides daily.

The Guide helps consumers make informed choices to lower their dietary pesticide load. (Click here for the most recent edition of the guide.)

Will Washing and Peeling Help?

Nearly all the studies used to create these lists assume that people rinse or peel fresh produce. Rinsing reduces–but does not eliminate–pesticides. Peeling helps, but valuable nutrients often go down the drain with the skin. The best approach: Eat a varied diet, rinse all produce and always buy organic when you can.

Detoxification Matters

Exposure to environmental toxins increases the likelihood of disease. Safe, regular detoxification plays a large role in feeling better and looking younger, but the benefits don’t end there.

Learn more about Essential #5: Minimized Toxins.