Wednesday, July 29, 2009

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How to minimize pesticide residues on vegetables and fruit

The effects of ingesting pesticides in the very small amounts present in vegetables or fruits are unknown, but you must protect yourself and your family from pesticides on fruits and vegetables. Because many fruits and vegetables sold in our markets today are treated with pesticides, and residues of these potentially harmful chemicals often remain on their surfaces. Try the following idea to minimize those harmful effect.

Wash all fresh vegetables and fruit thoroughly with lots of running water. Vegetables and fruit should be washed before it is eaten because washing does reduce levels of some pesticides. However, other pesticides are taken up internally in the plant, are in the fruit, and cannot be washed off.
Washing with plain water only removes 25-50 percent of the pesticide residue. Try to washing and rewashing fruits and vegetables and allowing them to soak for a few minutes.

It makes common sense to peel fruits, if possible, and not to eat potato skins unless you are able to purchase them pesticide-free.

Remove the outer leaves of lettuce, cabbage and other leafy vegetables and then rinse the vegetables. Peel hard-skinned produce, or rinse it with lots of warm water mixed with salt and lemon juice or vinegar.

I certainly advocate avoiding the skins of foods that are reported to have the most pesticide residue.

Commercial vegetable and fruit washes are available at your local health food stores and some supermarkets which are formulated to remove chemical residue from produce. Or you can also make your own produce wash using a much diluted solution of mild dishwashing detergent (1 tsp detergent mix with 4 liters water).

Many peoples really confused between trying to eat more vegetables and fruits as recommended by dietitians and the concerns over pesticides used on fresh produce. So, alternatively, you may want to buy and serve organic produce. Organic growers do not use pesticides to produce their fruits and vegetables.

Remember that the benefits of eating fresh fruits and vegetables may outweigh the risks associated with pesticide residue, but do with caution when buying produce.

Have another tips? Share with us and help other people.
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