No More Excuses! Eat Organic On The Cheap

    A series of carrots, apples and grapesDid you know that you can eat a healthy, organic diet on a tight budget?

    Believe it or not, eating organic food does not have to be expensive. Over the past few years, the growing interest in organic food and its many benefits has led to more competition and increased availability. Organic options are more accessible, and if you’re concerned about where your food comes from, affordable organic items are available to you.

    Many times, people avoid fresh produce because they don’t know how to prepare it and they’ve only been exposed to processed junk. But a little education and an open mind can do wonders for your budget and your health.

    Top 12 Foods to Buy Organic

    If you have budget constraints, your money is doing more for your health when you put it towards organic varieties of the following fruits and vegetables (listed in descending order, starting with greatest levels pesticide contamination):

    1. Apples
    2. Celery
    3. Sweet bell peppers
    4. Peaches
    5. Strawberries
    6. Nectarines (imported)
    7. Grapes (imported)
    8. Spinach
    9. Lettuce
    10. Cucumbers
    11. Blueberries (domestic)
    12. Potatoes

    Save Your Money & Buy Conventional

    If going totally organic is too difficult or pricey, play it safe and eat the following conventional produce items to minimize your exposure. These are known to have the least amount of pesticide residue (listed in ascending order, starting with of lowest levels of pesticide contamination):

    1. Onions
    2. Sweet corn
    3. Pineapple
    4. Avocado
    5. Cabbage
    6. Sweet peas
    7. Asparagus
    8. Mangoes
    9. Eggplant
    10. Kiwi
    11. Cantaloupe (domestic)
    12. Sweet potatoes
    13. Grapefruit
    14. Watermelon
    15. Mushrooms

    When eating conventional foods, be certain to peel away edible skins and outer leaves (such as those on lettuce) as pesticides are often concentrated there. Remember to wash all produce (conventional and organic) thoroughly with a natural fruit and vegetable cleanser. Peeling and washing can help reduce (not eliminate) pesticide exposure, but also results in the loss of valuable vitamins and nutrients (like fiber). When you have the choice between an organic item and one that’s conventionally grown, choose organic as much as possible.

    These four tips can help you pick up plenty of organic products without getting you uncomfortable with your grocery budget.

    1. Rethink your food budget.

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