The Dirty Dozen Plus: What You Should Buy Organically

Lots of people out there know that organic produce is pretty much the bomb diggity compared to regular produce; it just happens to also be little pricier sometimes. Originally many just thought that organic produce was beneficial to your health because organic produce isn't grown with conventional pesticides, fertilizers and so on. Therefore organic produce eliminates your exposure to pesticides and toxic chemicals that can have a severe impact on your health (we're talking cancer and all sorts of awful things).

Recent research shows that not only is organic produce good for you because of all the crap that it removes, but it is also good for you because of all the crap it includes. As it turns out, organic produce has recently been proven to show much more nutritious value as the produce is usually higher in nutrients, vitamins and antioxidants than non-organic produce.


{However, you always have to remember to look for the USDA certified organic seal...that's when you know you really have an organic item on your hands!}

So what's a shopper to do when they want to eat a little healthier but realize that their budget doesn't quite allow it? Well first off, they need to pat themselves on the back for wanting to eat healthier to begin with (pat pat). Then they need to see what their budget will allow. Always strive for organic produce before you start working in organic canned goods, snacks, dairy and meats into your budget.

Even if you can't afford to purchase all of your produce organically, you can at least use this handy list of items that is considered to be the most toxic produce items out there, better known as the Dirty Dozen Plus. In other words, these items are the ones that you really, really want to purchase organically as study after study (they update regularly) shows that these items always have the highest traces of pesticides and chemicals.


The produce items you should purchase organically. 

  1. Strawberries
  2. Grapes
  3. Apples
  4. Peaches
  5. Nectarines
  6. Bell Peppers 
  7. Hot Peppers
  8. Cherry Tomatoes
  9. Cucumbers
  10. Spinach, Kale and Collard Greens
  11. Sweet Peas
  12. Potatoes
  13. Hot Peppers 
  14. Blueberries

Most of us probably are not going and purchasing all of these items at once, especially since many of these are seasonal and only available (and yummy) at certain times of the year. Therefore, with a little wiggle room in your budget you can work in those items that you do need. Strive to purchase these items organically and then if your budget has some more wiggle room, strive for all organic produce. If your budget includes even more wiggle room, work your way into the category that you feel is next important (like dairy). 

Hopefully, you have some wiggle room for this list above (but we know not everyone has room to wiggle). 

Wiggle, wiggle...

What's your organic shopping rules?