MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — As you’ve probably heard or experienced, buying organic foods at the grocery store can cost more.

Beef on average is $3.58 per pound for non-organic, whereas you pay more than twice as much — $8.39 per pound — for organic.

Peanut butter is also more than double at 27 cents per ounce organic versus 12 cents non-organic.

So when you’re at the grocery store, how do you know what to spend your money on?

Nutrition and weight loss specialist Dr. DelRae Messer says when it comes to some foods, don’t bother buying organic, but she also says there are some foods that you should strive to always buy organic. Among those foods are meat, milk and coffee.

“Just think, we pretty much eat those every day,” said Messer. “We’re like sponges, so we soak up these toxins and pesticides and it just accumulates with time.”

There is also a list of 12 food items that if you always eat organic, Messer says, you can cut your exposure to pesticide residue by 80 percent.

The foods on that list of 12 include fruits and vegetables with softer, more porous skins like berries and peaches. They also include leafy vegetables, including spinach.

For those shopping on a budget, Messer recommended buying non-organic produce with a built-in level of protection in the form of heavy shells — like cantaloupe, melons or avocados.

Here is the full “Dirty Dozen” list:

— Celery
— Peaches
— Strawberries
— Apples
— Blueberries
— Nectarines
— Bell Peppers
— Spinach
— Kale
— Cherries
— Potatoes
— Grapes

Beside foods with thick skins, Dr. DelRae says you needn’t bother buying organic cookies, crackers, candy. Even if they are organic, it doesn’t matter; the sugar isn’t good for you because it spikes your blood glucose.


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