cheat sheet


Confession: I was once an organic skeptic.
Let me premise this by saying, I LOVE fresh fruit and vegetables. Really, is there anything better than snacking on giant bowl of pineapple or a plate full of apples and honey? Ok, probably a lot of things...but none that I can think of right now (I'm suffering from study-induced hunger pains, can you blame me?) But when the organic movement started gaining steam I didn't really buy it. All I could think was, "So you're telling me that these tiny little apples and miniature strawberries are better than the massive Fuji apples beckoning to me from their shiny pyramid and the monstrous strawberries the size of my fist? Get out of here." I mean, really. Was I supposed to believe that I'd want to spend more money on something that I could finish in 3 bites? What did they grow this with anyway? Love and rainbows and smiles? No thanks, I'll stick to the juiced-up variety that takes me at least half an hour to finish.
Well it didn't take long before I ate my own words (and eventually the teeny-tiny fruit) because of what I'd learned about pesticides and chemicals I was voluntarily ingesting (YUM!) After brushing up on all the toxins hiding in those giant apples, I started making a conscious effort to buy organic. But, here's another shocking confession: it's harder than you think. You buy one bag of organic fruit and all of a sudden you find yourself asking, "Do I now have to become a total organic convert?" The grocery receipt alone will provide you with a frightening reality of going full-on organic. Thankfully, those much more creative and proactive than me created a sweet little tool to help organic newbies navigate the aisles of the organic world. By way of one of my favorite blogs, The Southern Eclectic, I bring you the "Dirty Dozen Cheat Sheet."

It's pretty simple. One side lists the "dirty dozen," or the foods with the highest pesticide residue which was measured after washing and peeling. The other side lists the "clean fifteen," or foods with lowest or no pesticide residue. I'm thinking of printing this out to keep in my wallet so that next time I go to the grocery I can cruise through the produce section like a pro. Useful AND cute...a winning combination!