A question I often get asked is “what should I buy organic … it’s all so expensive!” Sigh, I feel you! The simple answer is “as much as possible”. There have been countless studies demonstrating the higher nutrient content and plethora of health benefits that come with consuming a predominantly organic, plant-based diet. Don’t forget that oftentimes you can find frozen organic produce for a fraction of the cost of fresh, and these are just as good from a health perspective. My suggestion would be to venture to the farmer’s markets on the weekends and load up on all your organic produce. Not only will you be supporting local farmers, but you’ll also find this produce is much fresher and oftentimes much more affordable.
Now, down to the nitty gritty. I understand we are not all Rockefeller and can’t afford to be spending double digits on organic berries so my suggestions are to: 1) buy seasonally, 2) buy in bulk – half your produce fresh, ripe and ready to eat, and the remaining half unripe so that it can last you throughout the week (you can freeze some vegetables and fruits such as bananas, papaya etc.), and finally 3) purchase all foods on the “dirty dozen” list below organic, and all those on the “clean fifteen” list from your local grocer. Avoid purchasing your produce (even organic) from large chain supermarket stores, as it has often been sitting in storage for long periods of time and as a result has undergone significant nutrient loss. This produce is also often repeatedly sprayed with nasty chemicals so that it stays fresher for longer and “looks pretty”. Like everything in life, if it looks too good to be true, it probably is!
THE DIRTY DOZEN (NASTIES)
THE CLEAN FIFTEEN (GOODIES)
Produce to Purchase Organic
(In Order of Contamination Levels)
8. Spinach & Most Greens & Herbs (Kale, Silverbeet)
Also look out for : Sugar Snap Peas & Tomatoes
Produce that can be Purchased From the Grocer
(In Order of Least Contamination)
2. Sweet Corn
6. Sweet peas
12. Sweet potatoes
15. Papaya & Paw Paw
Note: Red = not a FODMAP-friendly option