Eating fresh fruits and vegetables is an essential part of a healthy diet. However, these natural goodies can often carry hidden contaminants like pesticides, herbicides, bacteria, and dirt. Cleaning your produce thoroughly is crucial to ensure that you and your family are consuming safe and nutritious food. In this blog post, we'll explore three effective and natural methods for cleaning fruits and vegetables using vinegar, baking soda and ozone. We'll also discuss the importance of prioritizing the "Dirty Dozen," the reasons why cleaning produce is vital, and the potential dangers of glyphosate.
Prioritizing the Dirty Dozen When it comes to buying produce, organic options are generally the best choice. However, organic produce can be more expensive and less accessible for some. In such cases, prioritizing the "Dirty Dozen" can help you make informed choices about which fruits and vegetables to buy organic. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) compiles a list of the "Dirty Dozen," which includes twelve produce items that tend to have higher pesticide residues. These should be prioritized for organic purchase or thorough cleaning. The 2023 Dirty Dozen list as published by the EWG includes:
1. Strawberries 2. Spinach 3. Kale, collard & mustard greens 4. Peaches 5. Pears 6. Nectarines 7. Apples 8. Grapes 9. Bell & hot Peppers 10. Cherries 11. Blueberries 12. Green Beans
Cleaning your fruits and vegetables is essential for several reasons:
Pesticide Residues: Commercially grown produce often contains pesticide residues, which can be harmful when ingested over time.
Bacteria and Pathogens: Fruits and vegetables can harbor harmful bacteria such as E. coli and Salmonella, posing a risk of foodborne illnesses.
Dirt and Debris: Produce can be contaminated with dirt, dust, and handling residues during harvesting and transportation.
Wax and Chemical Coatings: Some fruits, like apples and cucumbers, are coated with wax or chemicals to preserve freshness. Cleaning helps remove these substances.
Allergens: Cleaning can help remove potential allergens, such as pollen or other particles, from the surface of produce.
Parasites: Cleaning produce can help remove parasites such as Giardia, Cyclospora, and Toxoplasma gondii.
Cleaning with Vinegar Vinegar is a natural disinfectant and can effectively remove pesticide residues and bacteria from your produce. Here's how to use it:
Mix one part white vinegar with three parts water in a spray bottle.
Spray the solution onto your fruits and vegetables.
Gently rub or scrub the produce with a brush or your hands.
Rinse thoroughly with water to remove any vinegar taste.
Cleaning with Baking Soda Baking soda is another natural option for cleaning produce. It helps remove pesticide residues and can be especially useful for removing surface wax. Here's how to use it:
Mix one tablespoon of baking soda with a gallon of water.
Soak your fruits and vegetables in the baking soda solution for 15-20 minutes.
Scrub the produce gently with a brush.
Rinse thoroughly with water.
My favorite way to clean my produce is with my ozone bubbler. This unique device, with its special tungsten mechanism, can be used to sanitize all of your food sources by simply bubbling the low Gamma O3 into your kitchen sink filled with tap water. Within minutes your tap water transforms into a sanitation station and can sterilize and disinfect all forms of unhealthy foreign bacteria, viruses, parasites, and the like, as well as help remove pesticides and herbicides. You can use my discount code JENNASCLEANLIVING to save 10%.
Cleaning your fruits and vegetables is a simple yet crucial step in promoting a healthy diet and reducing your exposure to harmful contaminants. Whether you opt for vinegar, baking soda, or ozone, all methods are safe, non-toxic and budget-friendly. Remember to prioritize the "Dirty Dozen" when buying conventional produce and make an effort to support organic farming practices. By taking these steps, you can enjoy your fruits and vegetables with confidence, knowing that you've taken measures to protect your health and well-being.