2. Organic Is Worth It
"A baby's body and brain are most vulnerable to toxic effects of pesticides," says David Walling a M.D., medical director for the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy. "If there's a ‘best' time to shop pesticide-free, it's when they're babies."
- Go organic where it counts most. Amy Diggle Moran, a mom of twins in Boston, prioritizes her organic food buys using the Environmental Working Group's (EWG) "Dirty Dozen" list of fruits and veggies that contain the most pesticides. Moran's approach is a smart way to minimize pesticide exposure, says Dr. Wallinga.
The Dirty Dozen fruits and veggies with the most pesticides, in descending order: (You can download a wallet guide or iPhone app for free at foodnews.org.)
- domestic blueberries
- sweet bell peppers
- kale and collards
- imported grapes
- Make your own purées using organic foods. It's easy and you'll know whatyour baby's eating. Find recipes at parenting.com/babyfood.
- Buy organic baby foods. There are many options. They come in jars (Earth's Best), frozen cubes (Happy Baby, Jack's Harvest), plastic tubs (Gerber Organic) and squeeze pouches (Ella's Kitchen, Plum Organics).
When a label says organic This means a food has been certifiably produced without the use of any harmful pesticides, chemical fertilizers, growth hormones, antibiotics or genetically modified organisms.
When a label says natural It doesn't mean "organic." A natural product hasno artificial ingredients or preservatives; with meat and poultry, it means minimally processed (vague, yes, that's part of the problem with the Food and Drug Administration's definition) and no artificial ingredients.