Clean it Up

I, like many women, use all kinds of products. From soaps to shampoos to beauty products, I have something for everything – I think I inherited this product overload from my mother… I also eat a ton of fresh fruits and veggies, so in honour of Organic Week AND Self-Improvement Month, I did a quick inventory around the house and discovered that I’m not nearly as “healthy” is I like to think I am most of the time.

I rarely buy organic produce, though I do fairly well in the beauty department. I use natural and sulphate-free shampoo, conditioner and my face wash and skin-care are all natural as well. This is not to say that I don’t use generic, mass produced products – I just like to switch it up, just as a personal preference. I found that my refrigerator could use the biggest overhaul. I know I’m consuming all kinds of pesticides and nasty chemicals that I don’t even want to think about but I think, like a lot of us, I’m not always comfortable paying more for already increasingly expensive produce – unless I’m on some sort of health kick…I’ve been known to splurge – So I did a little research as to how I could start incorporating more natural and organic food into my diet without completely changing my shopping experience, and without breaking the bank.

Beef/meat in general

I don’t consume a lot of meat, especially beef, just as a a convenience thing; but meat is one area where buying organic can be really important. Meat commonly has a large concentration of hormones. Buying locally from a farm you’re familiar with is also a good way to both do some good in your community and ensure you’re not buying meat that has been injected with all kinds of hormones. Plus, it’s better for the animals 🙂

Strawberries

I had no idea strawberries were such perfect homes for pesticides! It makes sense though, pesticides and chemicals are more likely to linger in the bumpy and porous skin of these delicious little berries than a blueberry where the smooth skin is easier to wash. I actually prefer the taste and feel of the small, organic and local strawberries to the huge ones that are usually cheaper too. The way to get your hands on these is make sure they’re in season and then visit your local U-pick farm where you can pick your own! It’s actually a really fun way to spend a summer afternoon and you end up with beautiful, delicious and healthy strawberries. There are U-pick farms in Saanich and up the island as well – Here’s a list of some choices.

Celery

I love celery! I love celery with peanut butter, dipped in ranch, in salads, in casseroles, on its own…I just love it! So I was surprised to learn that celery is also kind of like a sponge and just soaks up chemicals and pesticides, making it difficult to clean properly. This was kind of like an awakening to me and will definitely force me to think about the produce I’m buying from now on.

There are lots of other fruits and vegetables that are important to consider buying organic like potatoes and apples, but I think as long as we make a conscious effort to incorporate what we can, when we can, then we can all improve our health a little bit.

That’s all it takes, a little bit.

How do you incorporate organic/natural into your life? Are you an all-in kind of person, or a dabbler? Maybe a convenience or a bargain shopper? Wherever you fit in, good for you! Healthy lifestyles take planning and commitment in a society based on convenience and price, so changing your routine even just a little bit is a huge step. I know for me, it’s hard to commit to a completely organic lifestyle, but I’m happy to incorporate what I can. Check out organicweek.ca for some great events going on in your community September 22-28.

A little more natural, a little more organic, a little more life.

BRIJ that gap.

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One thought on “Clean it Up

  1. Briana, your considerations for eating healthier are admirable…it takes extra effort and time to search out healthy alternatives to what the mainstream grocery stores have to offer. I think you’ve achieved a balance…incorporate what you can. For each of us, there’s a certain effort we can make that allows us to sleep at night. I think it’s important to find that, and I think you have. It makes us think! Thanks for sharing important info and your take after all the research.

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