The 12 Most Pesticide Polluted Fruit and Veggies

Pesticides have been linked to cancer, neurological problems and possibly ADHD. Protect your family by eating chemical-free produce and avoid these pesticide polluted fruits and vegetables (13 Photos)

Karen Springen on Mar 15, 2013 at 11:21AM

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The 12 Most Pesticide Polluted Fruit and Veggies

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Strawberries

According to the United States Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the following fruits and vegetables are the most commonly eaten -- and most commonly full of chemical. Use these tips to limit your risk of ingesting pesticides, too.

Why strawberries risky: "Strawberries are very tender and very delicate and grown close to the soil," says says Chensheng (Alex) Lu, Ph.D., assistant professor of environmental exposure biology, Harvard School of Public Health. That's also where insects live, so farmers often resort to pesticides. To prevent mold and extend shelf life, they also use fungicides, even after harvest.

How to lower your exposure: Buy organic berries to help avoid harsh chemicals. A 2008 study at Emory University and the University of Washington found that certain pesticide levels dropped to undetectable (or close to it) in the urine of kids who switched to organic fruits and veggies. "The organic certification guarantees you that significantly fewer pesticides and lower amounts of pesticides were used in the growing of that commodity," says Anne Riederer, Sc.D., assistant research professor at Emory.

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