Food is important to me. It always has been. I love really good food and I choose not to eat food that I know is not of good quality. Why waste the calories? I have enough problem watching what I eat. Why give my body calories from foods that don’t taste great? If I’m going to gain weight from eating. it better be the best tasting food I can eat.
So we like to have our salads made with romaine lettuce leaves, sweet red bell peppers, onions, great tasting quality tomatoes and Persian cucumbers. We make our own salad dressing with salt, pepper, extra virgin olive oil, raspberry vinegar and a good balsamic vinegar.
So what has changed? I learned that lettuce and sweet bell peppers are on the dirty dozen list of heavily toxic vegetables. If I can’t find organic sweet peppers, preferably red, orange, yellow or green, in that order, we go without peppers. If you visit the EWG(Environmental Working Group) website, you learn of the 12 foods that must be organic. And one of the dirty dozen is sweet bell pepper. Same goes for lettuce. Tomatoes and cucumbers aren’t on the dirty dozen list yet. But I still choose those ingredients based on flavor, preferring really good flavor. I don’t want a tomato that tastes like jellied water.
So why is any of this important? It’s important because what we eat affects our body which affects our health and it also affects your skin, the biggest organ in the body. Yes, we must eat our fruits and vegetables. But if those fruits and vegetables are loaded with pesticides, how is that affecting our bodies? What I love about EWG is they have determined how many toxins various fruits and vegetables have. Thus the dirty dozen which must be bought organic. Things like onions and garlic have natural ingredients that prevent pests from pestering them so they don’t have to be bought organically. And there are other fruits like bananas, kiwi, mangos and pineapples that have little pesticides. Cabbage and broccoli are also very low in pesticides along with eggplant, avocados and asparagus. So not everything must be bought organically.
However, there is another reason to buy organic food. Did you know that the nutrients we once got from one carrot years ago (I can’t give you the definitive date here) now requires that we eat 4 carrots to get the same amount? Produce gets the majority of the nutrients we need in the last day or two of the ripening process. So if the produce is picked before that time, we are getting shorted on nutrients.
If you have local farmers near you, support them. In supporting them, you are helping the local economy, your family and yourself. Some communities now have CSA, Community Supported Agriculture. A great place to get your organic vegetables. And I have plenty of wonderful recipes to share with you if you find something you’ve never cooked before. Remember, I love food! I love talking about it, cooking it and eating it and then talking about how great it tasted and what shall we have at the next meal before we’ve even finished this meal! Drives my hubby crazy!
So have you bought organic vegetables or fruits and what is your experience with it?