Home > Uncategorized > How to Wash Your Vegetables and Fruits

How to Wash Your Vegetables and Fruits

According to the Food and Drug Administration, you should wash raw fruits and vegetables before peeling, cutting, eating or cooking to remove bacteria, mold and pesticides.                                                                         

Sensing a money making opportunity, companies have begun to offer vegetable and fruit washes and ozone purification systems that claim to be most effective method of removing pesticides and other contaminants.  Really?  Fortunately for us, researchers at the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition at the University of Maine, have tested the effectiveness of these products. The researchers, using blueberries, found that soaking the fruit in distilled water for two minutes was more effective than ozone food sterilizers and roughly as effective as vegetable and fruit washes at removing microbes.  Ozone food sterilizers start at $350.  Vegetables and Fruit washes sell for $4.95 per 16 oz. Distilled water sells for .69 cents a gallon. Which would you buy?

Washing Vegetables and Fruits

 • Wash your hands before preparing food

• Allow all vegetables and fruits to soak in distilled water for two minutes. Fruits with thick skin require scrubbing with a soft brush

• If the vegetable or fruit cannot be soaked, place it in a colander and spray it with distilled water

• Clean all cutting boards and utensils after peeling and before additional cutting of the produce. This will prevent bacteria from the outside of the produce to contaminate the inside when it’s cut or peeled

 While I haven’t covered organic foods yet, one of their main benefits is that they’re grown or produced without the use of pesticides. While cost may prohibit some people from purchasing organic produce exclusively, the following produce have been shown to contain the highest levels of pesticides and buying them “organic” would be a wise investment. At least, spend extra time and care washing them.

 Fruits:                                                                                                                Peaches                                                                                                                        Pineapple                                                                                                                Strawberries                                                                                                           Tomatoes                                                                                                                                  Raspberries                                                                                                           Pears                                                                                                                      Blueberries                                                                                                                                  Cherries                                                                                                                           Apples                                                                                                                             Bananas                                                                                                                            Grapes                                                                                                                    Nectarines                                                                                                                           Lemons                                                                                                                            Kiwis                                                                                                                                 Limes                                                                                                                                                                                                                Cantaloupe

 Vegetables:                                                                                                             Celery                                                                                                                           Cucumbers                                                                                                            Spinach                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Green & Red Peppers                                                                                                      Carrots                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Green Beans                                                                                                                                                                                                                     All Squash

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  1. October 15, 2010 at 01:17

    You can also mix up your own fruit wash with cheap ingredients like vinegar, lemon & baking soda. http://jimmirogers.wordpress.com/2010/10/15/anti-pesticide-fruit-wash/

    • October 15, 2010 at 11:59

      Excellent points! I use the distilled method because it’s cheap, fast and efficient.

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