The Clean Fifteen and The Dirty Dozen

Please excuse me if I am repeating old information, but the concept of the “Clean 15” and “Dirty Dozen” was just brought to my attention recently. A little behind the 8 ball there I’ll admit… But better late than never!

I have been diligently buying my groceries at my local organic grocer for years now. Yes, I am one of those people that has accepted that $5.00 for an avocado is sometimes just the price you pay. Luckily my partner hates avocado and we don’t have kids, therefore I can budget 1-2 organic avocados into my weekly shop without breaking the bank, (I buy avocado instead of alcohol and junk food!). But lucky for me, and my budget, the Clean 15 has been saving me money already. Apparently I could have been buying non-organic avocados this whole time without fear of chemical exposure!

Here is the list of 15 conventionally grown fruit and veggies with little to no traces of pesticides:

  • onions
  • avocados
  • sweet corn
  • pineapples
  • mango
  • sweet peas
  • asparagus
  • kiwi fruit
  • cabbage
  • eggplant
  • rockmelon
  • watermelon
  • grapefruit
  • sweet potatoes
  • sweet onions

Now I’m not exactly sure what a ‘sweet onion’ is, but a quick Google search told me it was a non-pungent, low sulphur onion and pictured a large white bulb with green stalks. Also, ‘sweet corn’ is just corn to me. I’ve never come across bitter corn, or salty corn, only purple corn, white corn, pop corn and baby corn!

So the about-face of the “Clean 15” is the “Dirty Dozen”. When conventionally grown, the fruits and vegetables on the “Dirty Dozen” list tested positive for at least 47 different chemicals, with some testing positive for as many as 67. These are the ORGANIC ONLY items. Unless you don’t mind added chemicals with your salad.

This list includes:

  • celery
  • peaches
  • strawberries
  • apples
  • blueberries
  • nectarines
  • sweet bell peppers
  • spinach, kale and collard greens
  • cherries
  • potatoes
  • grapes
  • lettuce

Thanks to these lists I have now relaxed my organic only rule in our household and am happy saving money doing it. I still wash all my fruit and veggies (especially the non organic ones) with a natural fruit and veggie wash such as those from SafeGuard or EnviroClean. I also aim to buy all my non organic fruit and veg from local farmers markets- at least then I know my produce is local, hasn’t been in cold storage or shipped thousands of kilometres to get to me.

Oh my goodness, do you know what this means!?!? It means pan fried asparagus spears, coconut oil sautéed red onions and thick slabs of avocado on sprouted spelt grain toast! It means an abundance of pineapples and mangos as the weather warms up! It means not limiting myself to 2 pink grapefruit (the size of softballs) per week, and savouring each little segment and the ruby jewels it contains! Happy days!

I hope this news (albeit old news) made your day too. :)