BUYING GROCERIES THAT COUNT

When you get to the grocery store, you may have limited time and budget, therefore, you need to make every minute and dollar count.

Here are some tips on knowing what to buy in the produce, meat, poultry, fish and dairy departments that will keep you a clean machine!

5 COMMANDMENTS OF HEALTHY FOOD SHOPPING

  1. Buy organic produce, especially from the Dirty Dozen lists below.
  2. Choose NON-Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) Foods. (check labels)
  3. Pick out Dairy that is organic, free of hormones and antibiotics.
  4. Purchase Meats and Poultry that are organic, grass fed, and free of hormones and antibiotics.
  5. Find Fish that is low in Mercery.

PRODUCE

A 2009 report from the President’s Cancer Panel, states that children are more vulnerable to harm from pesticides, including an increased risk of cancer.

Buy produce that was grown in the USA whenever possible. Even though it may be grown organic in another country, it has to be shipped by truck, boat or rail. There is no guarantee what it has been shipped with. Small babies and children or overly sensitive adults can still be affected by pesticides as an environmental toxin.

Whether you are buying conventional or organic try to buy organic whenever possible. By switching the foods on the “dirty dozen” list, that you eat most frequently to organic, can cut your intake of pesticides by up to 80 percent.

CLEAN FIFTEEN… Less likely to contain systemic pesticides

Onions, Avocados, Corn, Pineapples,  Mangos,  Sweet Peas, Asparagus, Kiwi, Eggplant, Cabbage, Domestic Cantaloupe, Watermelon, Sweet Potatoes, Grapefruit, Mushrooms

THE DIRTY DOZENS… Buy organic when ever possible

Fruits: Strawberries, Blueberries, Apples, Cherries, Peaches, Imported Nectarines, Cantaloupe (Mexico), Pears, Apricots, Grapes, Cucumbers.

Vegetables: Red and Green Bell Peppers, Spinach, Celery, Green Beans, Lettuce, Kale, Collard Greens, Winter Squash, Potatoes, Tomatoes, Carrots.

Remember, fresh local produce is always preferable to trucked in or processed food.

GENETICALLY MODIFIED ORGANISM (GMO) FOOD 

What you did not know you have been eating, may very well have been harming you.

Based on animal research with GM foods, the American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM), an international organization of physicians, says there are serious health risks associated with eating GM foods. These include infertility, immune system problems, accelerated aging, disruption of insulin and cholesterol regulation, gastrointestinal problems, and organ damage.

Many European countries have banned GMO foods.

HOW TO AVOID GMO FOODS

• Buy organic produce.
• Buy products labeled “100% organic” or “made with organic ingredients”
• Look for NON-GMO labels
• Avoid At-Risk ingredients:

  • Corn (cornmeal, cornstarch, corn oil, and other corn-based ingredients)
  • Soybeans (soy protein, soy milk, tofu, soy lecithin, soybean oil,
  • and other soy-based ingredients)
  • Cottonseed Oil
  • Sugar Beets (sugar)
  • Most Hawaiian Papaya
  • A small amount of Zucchini and Yellow Squash

• Also beware of dairy products from cows injected with GM Bovine growth hormone.

• Look for dairy products labeled “NO rBGH or rBST” or “Hormone-Free”.

Sources: www.nongmoshoppingguide.com by the Institute for Responsible Technology

BUYING MEATS AND POULTRY

When a label that says “organic”, you are getting animals that have not been administered antibiotics, hormones, and pesticides. Especially buy organic when it comes to poultry, because commercial chicken feed has government approved, small amounts of arsenic used as a dietary supplement.

“Grass Fed” Beef means that the cow had a diet of grass and hay for its entire life.

“Grass Finished” means that the cow was fed grass and hay to finish its life with instead of being fattened up with grains. Grass provides a leaner meat yet much higher levels of naturally occurring omega-3’s than grain fed animals.

Note: As of January 1, 2012, all fresh meat and poultry sold in United States supermarkets, will have a nutrition label.

BUYING FISH

Having fish 1-2 times a week is not only a great way to lower amounts of saturated fat, but also a great way to get more beneficial omega-3 fatty acids, which will boost brain development and heart health. However, with high mercury levels in fish we need to be careful on what we choose.

FISH WITH LOW MERCURY LEVELS 

  • Arctic Cod
  • Anchovies
  • Butterfish
  • Crab (Domestic)
  • Crawfish/Crayfish
  • Flounder*
  • Haddock (Atlantic*)
  • Hake
  • Herring Trout
  • Mullet
  • Oyster
  • Plaice
  • Pollock
  • Salmon** (Canned, Fresh, Wild)
  • Sardine
  • Scallop
  • Shrimp*
  • Sole
  • Squid
  • Tilapia
  • Whitefish
  • Whiting

FISH WITH MEDIUM MERCURY LEVELS 

  • Bass (Striped, Black)
  • Carp Perch (Freshwater)
  • Cod (Alaskan)
  • Croaker (White Pacific)
  • Halibut (Pacific, Atlantic*)
  • Lobster Tuna (Canned Chunk Light, Skipjack*)
  • Lobster Sea Trout
  • Mahi Mahi
  • Monkfish*
  • Sablefish
  • Skate*
  • Snapper*

FISH WITH HIGH MERCURY LEVELS 

  • Bluefish Seabass* (Chilean)
  • Crab (Blue)
  • Grouper*
  • Tilefish*
  • Mackerel (King, Spanish, Gulf)
  • Marlin*
  • Orange Roughy*
  • Salmon** (Farmed, Atlantic)
  • Shark*
  • Swordfish*
  • Tuna (Ahi*, Yellowfin,* Bigeye, Blue, Canned Albacore)

*Overfished, **May Contain PCBs

Source: www.nrdc.org