Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Eating Better: The Basics (Part 6 Wow!)

Now that you know to eat your fruits and veggies and avoid processed foods (like that was a big news flash;)), I want to tell you about another important aspect of healthy eating...Eating organic foods!

Pesticides are known carcinogens. They cause everything from cancer to ADHD! This is proven! Yet, because the amount we actually consume per meal is so "small", they are considered safe by the FDA (don't even get me started on the FDA...:-/) What has been neglected is the effect they have on a cumulative basis, over time, as they accumulate in our bodies, polluting our body systems and organs. Not to mention the horrible impact pesticides have on the environment.

I hope that you have all heard of the "Dirty Dozen", a list composed by The Environmental Working Group, of the 12 "dirtiest" fruits and vegetables...The ones that have been laboratory tested, and found to contain the highest amount of pesticides. These are foods that you should ALWAYS buy organically! They also give you a list of the 15 "cleanest" fruits and vegetables, or "Clean Fifteen". These foods have the smallest amount of pesticide contamination. (I still buy some of these organically if available.)

Here a a few links on the dangers of pesticides in our food:



Here is a sample of  what I usually buy on my weekly grocery shopping trip:

Organic lettuces are great for quick and easy salads!
I use a salad spinner (love this one from OXO) to prep quickly, and for easy storage.

A variety of easy to pick up and eat on the go fruits...apples, plums and peaches, mmmm:)

We love our berries! They are loaded with antioxidants and fiber. 
Grapes are a great treat to have in a basket on the dining room table, so we can "pick" at them all day:)

It is also important to buy organic when it comes to dairy, eggs and meat. Meat, especially beef, is pumped full of hormones that are suspected of causing early puberty in young girls, and colon and breast cancers. Cattle are also fed corn, which is not what they are naturally meant to consume. They are grazing animals that should be grass fed. They are given hormones and fed corn to "fatten" them up and make them taste better. This is where the "You are what you eat", phrase comes into play...If you are eating something that is fat and full of hormones...YOU are going to be FAT AND FULL OF HORMONES!

Horizon organic milk is by far our family favorite (yes, that is chocolate milk you see;))
We also LOVE the Stonyfield Farm Organic yogurts!!!
Got to get the calcium in those kiddos:)

I won't lie...organic chicken is EXPENSIVE! But so worth it. 
I bake 1 or 2 of these up a week, and use them for different dishes, or slice/shred them up for sandwiches. They are terrific in school lunches (remember those nasty nitrates in lunch meat:P).

Organic eggs, from free-ranging  hens, just taste better! They contain less saturated fat and more omega-3 fatty acids. I eat 2 a day!

If I still haven't convinced you, you need to watch this documentary, Food Inc. It is life changing! (I have given you the link to part 1 of Food Inc. on YouTube. You can watch the whole thing there, in 9 parts, or check it out of your local library.)

Finally, I will leave you with the generous bounty of our garden!!!

My hubby and fabulous mother-in-law and father-in-law picked all of these last night!

Growing our own food sure is rewarding! (and we know what's in it;))

Have an awesome week!



  1. I am totally on the same page as you. I am torn, I agree and I buy mostly organic "real" food but on the other hand I bake and there is nothing healthy about that! Love the Horizon choc. milk and we usually buy that brand or Organic Valley or Stoneyfield. Love Stoneyfield yogurt! BTW~ I checked out the caramel apple recipe you recommended and it looks similar to the one I used from AllRecipes. I think it is a good mixture of ingredients and create the perfect caramel for dipping at home. Speaking of which.....I am going to get my caramel apple out of the fridge and eat it now. :)

  2. I know...I L-O-V-E to bake as well, it is fine to treat ourselves;) Plus, if you bake using whole ingredients, you are not getting the chemicals. Although I have cut way back on my sugar consumption this summer (as I stuff my mouth full of PB pie ;)).

  3. This is more great info Jessie, thank you! I try to buy organic but don't always. I am hoping that I can get more into planning my meals this fall instead of all the garbage that we eat on the run.
    I hope you had a great weekend!!


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