How to Eat Organic Foods on a Budget
Eating organic doesn't have to break the bank. Try these tips for trimming your organic food costs.
Alternatives to Organic Foods continued...
Produce from local farmers markets may not be organic, but is often fresher
than the same foods from a supermarket and may have less impact on the
environment. An added bonus: Foods from local markets require little packaging
other than a container to help you get them home.
Other options for fresher food that is also kinder to the planet:
- Eat foods when they are in season, which honors the natural rhythm of the
- Choose less processed versions of conventional foods whenever
- Eat more vegetarian meals. Organic meat can be expensive, and raising
animals for meat generally takes more natural resources than growing
When organic vegetables and fruits are not affordable or available, you can
reduce the risk of pesticide residue on conventional fruits and vegetables with
the following tips:
- Wash and scrub produce under running water (soaking is not adequate); 30
seconds significantly reduces surface residue.
- Peel skin whenever possible.
- Discard the outer leaves of leafy vegetables.
- Trim fat from meat and trim skin from poultry (pesticide residue can
collect in fat).
- Eat a variety of foods from a variety of sources.
- Canned fruits and vegetables typically have lower pesticide residue; the
canning process removes most toxins.
Keep in mind that whether you choose locally grown foods, organic foods, or
conventional foods from your grocery story, experts agree that the health
benefits of a diet rich in fruits and
vegetables far outweighs the potential risks from pesticide exposure.
Kathleen Zelman, MPH, RD, is director of nutrition for WebMD and the WebMD
Weight Loss Clinic. Her
opinions and conclusions are her own.