Summertime and the living is delicious! This is the season with the greatest variety of fruits and vegetables available, which are the perfect fuel for your active days (see sidebar, below). Whether you find yourself hiking, biking or playing a grueling tennis match, you need to stay well-hydrated and nourished to match your energy output. Fortunately, fruits and veggies are filled with water, clean carbs and fiber to keep you satiated for hours.
When choosing your produce this summer, keep in mind that some crops have a heavier residue of pesticides than others. This may influence whether or not you choose to purchase organic varieties instead of conventionally grown produce. The 2017 Dirty Dozen list put out by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) lists strawberries, spinach, nectarines, apples, peaches, pears, cherries, grapes, celery, tomatoes, sweet bell peppers and potatoes as the types of produce with the highest pesticide usage.
By contrast, EWG’s Clean 15 includes sweet corn, avocados, pineapples, cabbage, onions, sweet peas, papayas, asparagus, mangoes, eggplant, honeydew melon, kiwi, cantaloupe, cauliflower and grapefruit because these foods contain the lowest amounts of pesticides. Note that a small amount of sweet corn, papaya and summer squash grown in the United States is from genetically modified seeds. You may want to choose organic versions of these crops if you want to avoid genetically modified foods.