Updated: May 7, 2020
When it comes to eating for improved gut health, the emphasis goes beyond just carbohydrates, fats, protein, and calories. It even goes beyond food groups!
When you make the conscious decision to start eating healthier foods, it’s important to pay attention to what’s in your food.
Did you know that the nutritional value of most of our farmed produce has decreased over the last few decades? The food we eat no longer gives us the nourishment it used to, requiring us to seek other sources of vital nutrients.
This is due to the increasingly more common use of pesticides and genetically modified foods (GMOs) to grow food.
By consuming organic food as often as possible and choosing foods that are locally grown, sustainably farmed you can minimize the negative effects of pesticides and GMOs on your organs of detoxification - liver, and kidneys.
Beware of These Foods: The Dirty Dozen
These foods have been named the most likely to be contaminated by pesticides as per EWG's Dirty Dozen guide. If you’re on a budget, these are the foods you want to prioritize buying organic.
Safer Bets: The Clean Fifteen
These foods are the less likely to contain pesticides according to EWG's 2019 shoppers' guide. If you're on a budget, you can choose to buy these foods conventionally as they are likely to be less toxic to your health.
2. Sweet Corn
4. Frozen Peas
15. Honey Dew Melon
Guidelines for Staying Safe When Buying Food
Most foods are much better for your body, on multiple levels, when purchased organic. They’re closer to the earth and more care has been taken to ensure that they’re raised in a natural setting.
If you’re not able to purchase organic at a grocery store, farmer’s markets are a great alternative. Local farmers aren’t subjected to the same large-scale requirements of a corporate farm, or a farm subsidized by the government. They’re usually more likely to use fewer pesticides and more natural methods when growing foods. Often, these small farmers carry organic produce, even if the label itself doesn't say “organic”.
It’s also easier to buy foods that are in season if you have local sources. Farmers want to ensure that their stock doesn’t go bad before the next crop comes to flower. Eating seasonally is also statistically the best way to avoid food that has been genetically altered to remain fresh longer.
However, if there is no way you will be able to buy organic produce, rather than eating processed foods, try and eat more fruits and vegetables as they will be the most beneficial for your health.
Where do you buy food in your neighborhood? Do you typically buy organic food? Tell us why or why not in the comments!