Health,  Recipes

How to shop for produce at the grocery store

Would anyone like help shopping healthy at the grocery store?

I remember when I first decided to eat better and was walking the aisles of the grocery store. My mind was spinning, I was so confused, and I couldn’t even make choices to put in my cart. I was seriously considering backing out of this health change.

Thankfully, I bucked up and made it through… but not without lots and lots of mistakes. Those mistakes helped me learn and gain confidence in my diet. Over time, I’ve learned so much about foods and what they really do in our bodies.

While I do always recommend shopping organic, I know that shopping organic isn’t always feasible because it can be expensive. (This is why I ALWAYS harp on growing your own foods because you can dramatically cut this bill. Read all about our home garden here.)

The reason why organic is best is because the agricultural industry has to use pesticides that poison insects and pollinators, contaminate soil, water and air; and can cause harm to farmworkers, agricultural communities, and people who eat produce sprayed with pesticides. Organic standards prohibit the use of synthetic pesticides, among other things. Eating organic food reduces pesticide exposure and is linked to a variety of health benefits.

According to Environmental Working Group (EWG), over 90% of the fresh produce sold in the US contains residues of potentially harmful chemical pesticides. (See their 2021 shopper’s guide here)

Many of you have shared that you want more guidance shopping in the grocery store and here’s the scoop. Eating fruits and vegetables are proven to be good for your health. So how do we navigate these waters?

Every year, EWG releases a “Dirty Dozen” and “Clean Fifteen” list of the most important to get organic (Dirty Dozen) and which are the least pesticide-contaminated crop. These lists are what I stick to when shopping grocery stores.

Save this post and reference these guides when shopping for your produce and tell me if it helps make grocery shopping easier.

If you need more help shopping at the grocery store, you can check out my post on what to steer clear from at the grocery store and how I meal prep to help my week run more smoothly!

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