Kale Is Now One Of The Most Pesticide-Contaminated Vegetables

Kale is super healthy and nutritious. It may not have the best taste, but it helps us meet our daily requirement for many essential nutrients. However, a recent analysis by the Environmental Working Group showed that kale is dirty. Simple as that. This veggie is now added to the list of 11 fruits and vegetables known to be dirty.

The “Dirty Dozen” list is released once a year, and it lists 12 foods with the highest concentration of pesticides. The Environmental Working Group analyzes data obtained from the regular produce testing conducted by Department of Agriculture.

Strawberries, spinach, nectarines, apples, grapes, peaches, cherries, pears, tomatoes, celery and potatoes join kale on this list. In 2009, kale ranked eight on the Dirty Dozen list. It made the list again nearly a decade later.

EWG Toxicologist Alexis Temkin said they never expected to see kale on this list again, but the results were obvious.

More than 92 percent of kale leaves had pesticide residues after being washed and cleaned. More than 60 percent of the kale leaves had residual Dachtal, a known carcinogen.

Pesticides are used to protect fruits and veggies from insects, weeds and infections. However, they are packed with harsh chemicals that have a detrimental effect on human health.

The group also released a “Clean Fifteen” list, and it includes fruits and veggies with the least amount of pesticides. This year’s list contains avocados, sweet corn, pineapples, frozen sweet peas, onions, papayas, eggplants, asparagus, kiwis, cabbages, cauliflower, cantaloupes, broccoli, mushrooms and honeydew melons.

Consumers are always advised to buy organic produce from local farmers. Some people would rather have pesticides-packed fruits and veggies instead of avoiding fresh produce completely. According to EWG Research Analyst Carla Burns, the health benefits provided by fruits and veggies outweigh the risk brought by pesticides.