Making an educated decision about what you should be buying for your family has never been more important or confusing than it is now. We've tried to go to reliable sources and gather information that will help you feel more confident about the purchases you are making for your family. Vegetables and fruit, meat, poultry, dairy and seafood. Is there a way to look great without applying harmful ingredients? Can you get your house clean without putting your family's health at risk? How can you shop "Canadian"? We've put together a bunch of lists that you can add to your "list" apps and if, heaven forbid, you're not app savvy, we got a wallet card you can print out!
Organic: There's the dirty dozen of vegetables there are too many sources to name.If you can only afford or want to buy some organic veggies and fruits these are the ones to buy.
The dirty dozen
- Sweet Bell Peppers
- Imported Grapes
The clean fourteen
- Sweet Peas
- Cantelope (USA)
- Sweet Potatoes
10 sustainable seafoods
- Farmed Oysters: Oysters farmed worldwide in suspended culture systems
- Sablefish: Canadian Pacific or Alaska using trap & bottom longline
- Swordfish Harpoon: Canadian and US by harppon or with a handline (not a longline)
- Pacific Cod: Alaska by bottom longline, jig or trap
- Sardines: Canada & the US Pacific by purse seine
- Farmed Clams: farmed worldwide or wild, handraked ones from the US
- Albacore Tuna: caught in Canada and the US Pacific by troll/pole as opposed to longline
- Dungeness Crab: trap-caught in Canada, California, Oregon & Washington
- Closed Containment Farmed Salmon: farmed salmon raised in the US using closed containment systems
- Spot Prawns: Canadian Pacific by trap
If you want to make sure you are shopping "Canadian" you should be looking for "Product of Canada" first "Made in Canada"second and "Designed in Canada" third. These are guidelines for food labels and advertising put forth by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency to help Canadians have a clear understanding of where the products they are buying are manufactured and produced. The Competition Bureau of Canada is responsible for enforcing the guidelines set out for the labeling and advertising of "non food" products.
Buy "Product of Canada" first, then "Made in Canada" second
I know that I'm also concerned about what cosmetic ingredients I need to stay away from. As my daughters get older and are being introduced to "beauty" products I'm want to make sure that we are making educated choices that won't compromise their health in the long run. I found this amazing site, www.gilldeacon.ca. Gill Deacon wrote a book called There's Lead in Your Lipstick and she also has a wallet card that you can download from her website so that you have the list of ingredients that you want to avoid and a list of companies that she has deemed as "safe". It's amazing to me that it is common knowledge that there are all these ingredients that we shouldn't be using and yet it's really hard to buy products that don't contain them.
Here's Gill's current list of toxins to avoid.
FD & c
FD & c (colour + number)
Peg (1,4) lauryl ether
Polyethylene glycol (Peg)
Polypropylene glycol (PPg)
Sodium laurel sulfate (SlS)
Sodium laureth sulfate
Household cleaning ingredients to avoid
Send us an email at email@example.com and we'll send you the word doc to create your very own wallet card to slip in your wallet. If you print it, then flip it and print it again you've got 2 double sided cards, one for you and one for your best friend! If you've got an iPhone/Smart phone with a "note" app you can copy and paste these lists for easy reference.
If you know of any other great sites leave it in our comments box and we'll update the blog.