Do you know the importance of washing your fresh veggies before eating? Seriously, most of us probably do especially coming in from the garden to rid it of dirt even when practicing organic gardening. But, what about the produce from the grocery store? Have you ever just popped a grape in your mouth or eaten an apple or peach without washing? Or, maybe just shine that apple up with a dish cloth and take a bite? Well, it is important that all these vegetables be washed first. So, back to my question – why is it important to wash your veggies?
Wash your Veggies: How, When & Why
The main, and most important, reason for washing is pesticides. It is the quiet poison! The Environmental Working Group runs tests and studies pesticides in produce every year. Produce that has been found to that has the most pesticides include: strawberries, spinach, grapes, peppers, nectarines, peaches, potatoes, cucumbers, tomatoes, celery, and our beloved apple. Just the apple alone can contain over thirty types of pesticides from the farm. These pesticides live in your colon and release toxins into the body over time. This may explain why you might feel nauseous after eating a salad out somewhere. Maybe the produce wasn’t cleaned properly and you ingested pesticides! You might want to double check and wash your produce for cleanliness after hearing that one.
If you don’t wash your veggies and produce you are putting yourself at risk for becoming sick, or developing a serious condition like cancer. Pesticides eaten have also been linked to problems with pregnancy, such as birth defects and ADHD.
Before eating produce, wash it under running tap water. Veggies like cauliflower and broccoli, however, should be soaked for a couple minutes and then rinsed clean. This is because there are many little holes and grooves that bacteria from the pesticides used can grow in. Smaller produce, like berries, can be rinsed in a colander. A paper towel can be used to dry your produce. Trim your vegetables well and remove any areas that look like they may have dirt or pesticide residues before you wash your veggies.