edible notables


Top organic picks for optimal health.


00 Mena EvokeHeadshot
Photo by Kayla Raw

When I speak to my fitness-training clients about nutrition and healthy eating, they usually have lots of questions. Some of the most common questions are centered on organic foods and whether it matters if they eat organic or not. I believe there are certain foods that should only be purchased organic or grass fed, without question.

Here are my lists of foods in each category. Also, remember to buy in season. You’ll save money and get the freshest produce available.

Organic musts:

Strawberries, Blueberries, Spinach, Apples, Grapes, Peaches, Cherries, Pears, Tomatoes, Celery, Potatoes, Sweet bell peppers, Nectarines, Eggs, Chicken, Beef, Salmon (wild Atlantic)


Clean foods, whether or not organic (usually anything with thick skin, or skin you don’t eat):

Pineapples, Cantaloupes, Honeydews, Avocados, Mangos, Kiwis, Cabbages, Onions, Papayas, Bananas


Enjoy this summer salad. Make it even more delicious with a grilled chicken breast or salmon on the side. You also could serve the salad as an appetizer with gluten-free chips. For a family or crowd, it’s sure to please.


Avocado Black Bean Salad
(courtesy of Mena Spodobalski, owner and advanced fitness trainer, Evoke Fitness in Reno. Serves 4)


Nutritional content (per serving)
221 calories
21 grams fat
16 grams carbs
7 grams protein

2 avocados, peeled, pitted, and diced
1 large, ripe tomato, chopped
½ cup sweet onion, chopped
½ cup low-sodium black beans, drained and rinsed
¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
Juice of 1 lime
1 clove garlic, minced
Salt and pepper, to taste

In small bowl, make dressing: Whisk olive oil, lime juice, garlic, and salt and pepper (to taste). Set aside.

In medium bowl, combine avocados, tomatoes, onion, black beans, cilantro, and dressing. Gently toss until everything is coated. Serve immediately or cover with plastic wrap for up to 12 hours.




* indicates required