The food is really expensive here in Finland, and if you buy organic, the bill gets even higher. After all, organic foods cost 10-40% more than non-organic foods.
Our family spends a lot of money on organic food, and I often roll my eyes after hearing the total of our grocery bill. But I believe it’s still worth it. 😉
However, if you’re on a limited budget, it might not be economically feasible to buy everything organic.
If you consume dairy or meat, it’s definitely more important to start buying them organic first.
The next step would be investing in organic vegetables. Some vegetables have more pesticide residue than others, so I decided to create a list to help you figure out which vegetables would be important to buy organic.
Here are some reasons why I buy organic vegetables:
- Organic foods are less contaminated with agricultural chemicals. The frequency of occurrence of detectable pesticide residues is four times higher in non-organic crops.
- Less cadmium: Organic produce have on average 48 percent lower levels of cadmium, a toxic metal and a known carcinogen. Cadmium is one of only three metal contaminants along with lead and mercury for which the European Commission has set maximum permitted contamination levels in food.
- More antioxidants: Organic crops provide additional antioxidants equivalent to eating between 1-2 extra portions of fruit and vegetables a day.
- Less Nitrogen. Concentrations of total nitrogen were 10%, nitrate 30% and nitrite 87% lower in organic compared to conventional crops.
Source: (Newcastle University study, British Journal of Nutrition)
+ Organic vegetables taste better 🙂
Organic vegetables vs. conventionally grown vegetables
Buying in-season, organic produce from your local market is always the best assurance of pesticide-free produce.
Although, if you have to choose between wilted organic produce or fresh conventional produce, it’s better to choose the latter, as freshness is important for optimal nutrient content.
It’s impossible to find or afford organic produce all the time , so look for organic choices for the produce your family eats the most.
Consuming conventionally grown vegetables is always better than not consuming vegetables at all.
Peeling fruits, especially peaches, pears and apples, will help remove residues. You can also remove a substantial amount of surface pesticides through careful washing and light scrubbing. Here’s my vegetable wash recipe.
However, not all pesticides can be washed off fruits and vegetables. Although some pesticides are found on the surface of foods, other pesticides may be taken up through the roots and into the plant and cannot be removed.
Children and pesticides
Fruits and vegetables are an important part of children’s’ diet. Kids tend to eat a limited number of foods, which can increase their exposure to specific pesticides.
Children are more vulnerable to smaller doses of pesticides because their brains and bodies are still developing. They may also consume disproportionally large amounts of pesticides because they eat a lot of fruit relative to their body weight.
Children absorb pesticides more easily. And because their gastrointestinal tract is still developing, their bodies may be less capable of breaking down toxins. Pesticides can also block absorption of the nutrients that are crucial to healthy growth and development.
Which vegetables are important to buy organic?
I always try to buy at least these vegetables organic, since they are highest in pesticides. For me, there is a measure of comfort in knowing that my kid’s chemical intake has been minimized. 🙂
The cleanest vegetables and fruits (you don’t necessarily need to buy these organic):
* sweet corn
Hope you found these lists helpful 🙂
And finally, here is a simple, refreshing, summery smoothie recipe to brighten up winter days 🙂
- * 1 small organic cucumber (they cost almost 2 e here in Finland, but I still buy them 😀 )
- * 2 cups of watermelon
- * handful of basil
- * 1/2 lemon, juiced (freshly squeezed, preferably organic)
- Blend all ingredients in a blender. Enjoy! 🙂
If you wish this smoothie to have a bright color, it's wise to peel the cucumber 😉
Do you buy vegetables organic? If so, which ones? Have you noticed any difference? Feel free to leave a comment below. And if you know someone who might benefit from this information, sharing is caring 😉