Should You Wash Your Produce?
People are concerned with the health effects from pesticides and containmantion on the produce that is being purchased. People should be definitely concerned because with e coli being found on all kinds of produce and pesticides being used it is a health concern. So, should you wash your produce?
The answer is simple, yes you need to wash produce when you bring it home from the store. Pesticides can be very harmful to adults and children. Simply running water over fruits and vegetables really is not enough to truly get them cleaned. Running water over the produce will reduce pesticides, but if you want to really get your produce cleaned the right way here is a some tips to help you and your family.
1. Peel The Produce
Yes peeling the skin off a produce is one way to eliminate pesticides. I know that the skins on a lot of produce is full of nutrients, but this is just one way to get rid of pesticides.
2. Wash In Cold Water
You can wash your produce in cold water. Washing in cold water will reduce pesticides residue.
3. Baking Soda and Water
You can use 1 ounce of baking soda to 100 ounces of water. You should soak the produce for 15 minutes then rinse off in water. I personally have not tried this mixture of my produce. I would would suggest that thick skinned produce this will work fine. With porous produce I would not recommend.
4. White Vinegar
1 cup of white vinegar and 4 cups of water in a spray bottle. This is a good solution to make sure pesticide residue will be gone and it will also kill viruses and bacteria. After you spray the produce let the solution set for 5 minutes then rinse with cold water. Fruits and vegetables without thick skins, you still can spray the produce, just do not let the solution set for so long. Just spray the produce and wait a minute or so and wash. The vinegar should not affect the taste of porous produce if it not soaked for long periods of time.
2 tablespoons of salt to 4 cups of water. Mix this solution and let the produce soak for 30 mins. This is the best way rid the pesticides on porous produce like strawberries and blackberries for example. This solution will also work on thick skinned produce as well. But, white vinegar is best to kill bacteria and viruses.
Make sure before you clean any fruits or vegetables to make sure you wash your hands with antibacterial soap.
You should never wash your fruit with dish soap or hand soap. The only time I will use antibacterial dish soap is on cantaloupe, watermelon and lemons. Yes, I know you got to cut these fruits and remove the thick skin, but there is still bacteria on the skins of these fruits that could get on your cutting board or counter tops. With lemons you should especially wash the thick skin when you are planning on using the lemons to cut and put in your water and ice tea.
Buying the fancy vegetable sprays really are not necessary. The white vinegar in a spray bottle will work just as effectively as those sprays that cost a lot of money. This is a good money saving tip for families.
I also want to talk about organic produce as well. Most people think when they buy organic produce it will not need to be washed. Organic produce is not pesticide free. Organic produce is sprayed with pesticides that is approved for organic farms. Here is a good article that explains about organic produce and why it should be washed still courtesy of Organic Authority.
I hope these tips will keep you and your family healthy.
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