I can’t always buy organic produce in my area, but I would like to reduce my exposure to pesticides. Do some conventionally grown fruits and vegetables contain more pesticides than others?

Although I believe that it is important to eat organic food as often as possible, I understand that due to budget and limited availability many consumers are forced to make choices when buying organic. Certain fruits and vegetables tend to contain more pesticides than others. According to the Environmental Working Group, apples, bell peppers, celery, cherries, imported grapes, nectarines, peaches, pears, potatoes, red raspberries, spinach, and strawberries are the worst offenders in pesticide contamination. These 12 fruits and vegetables alone may contain upwards of 20 different pesticides. Choosing to replace these fruits and vegetables with their organic counterparts can cut your pesticide intake by up to 90%. However, vegetables and fruits are an important part of a well balanced diet, so make sure you get your USDA recommended daily allowance of vegetables and fruits a day.