The Clean Fifteen 2021 Explained—Wellness Wednesdays with Dr. Maloof, ND

The Clean Fifteen 2021 Explained—Wellness Wednesdays with Dr. Maloof, ND

The top 15 foods least contaminated with pesticides

Dr. Alison Maloof typically recommends eating organic foods as much as possible. However, if you’re on a budget buying organic can be overwhelming. The Clean 15 foods are ones that you don’t need to buy organic. At a minimum Dr. Maloof recommends buying organic for the foods listed on the Dirty Dozen (click here for last week’s article on the Dirty Dozen).

What is the Clean Fifteen?

These are the top 15 produce least contaminated with pesticides. Samples are tested after having been prepared for cooking (i.e. washed or peeled). After this preparation process these foods have minimal to no pesticide residue left on the fruit or veggie.

Why do I care?

Consumption of pesticides have profound health effects. “Long term pesticide exposure has been linked to the development of Parkinson’s disease; asthma; depression and anxiety; attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD); and cancer, including leukemia and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.”2 Eliminating pesticides completely is a difficult task because they contaminate so much of US food supply. However, there is a lot that you can do to lower the toxic burden, such as buying organic when possible. These 15 foods are ones you don’t need to worry about buying organic because of the low to almost zero amount of pesticides present.

Who determines the list?

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) is a non-profit, non-partisan organization that annually tests the top 46 most popular fruits & veggies for pesticides. They also are a great resource to see if other products you use in your home are safe. Check out their website for more information:

2021 Clean Fifteen:

  1. 1. Avocados
  2. 2. Sweet corn*
  3. 3. Pineapple
  4. 4. Onions
  5. 5. Papaya*
  6. 6. Sweet peas (frozen)
  7. 7. Eggplant
  8. 8. Asparagus
  9. 9. Broccoli

10. Cabbage

11. Kiwi

12. Cauliflower

13. Mushrooms

14. Honeydew Melon

15. Cantaloupe

*The EWG also notes that: “A small amount of sweet corn, papaya, and summer squash sold in the United States is produced with genetically modified seeds. Buy organic varieties of these crops if you want avoid genetically modified produce.”1

1 Group, Environmental Working. “Dirty Dozen™ Fruits and Vegetables with the Most Pesticides.” EWG's 2021 Shopper's Guide to Pesticides in Produce | Dirty Dozen,

2 “Health Effects of Pesticides.” Pesticide Action Network UK, 10 Mar. 2021,


About Dr. Alison R Maloof, ND
Dr. Maloof is a Naturopathic Doctor practicing at Atlas Naturopathic Health Center, a family healthcare practice in Rockport.  Dr. Maloof believes in treating her patients with a holistic approach, mapping a unique treatment plan based on your needs. She utilizes both modern and traditional therapies. Some of her featured services include: personalized nutrition, botanical medicine, hydrotherapy, homeopathy, and professional-grade supplements. Dr. Maloof treats many conditions including: menopause, skin conditions, tick-borne diseases, autoimmune disorders, GI disorders, anxiety/depression, chronic conditions, men & women’s health, and more.

Dr. Maloof is accepting new patients at Atlas Naturopathic Health Center. She offers complimentary 15-minute phone consults to see if naturopathic medicine is the right fit for your needs.

For more information please visit or call 207-466-9079.




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