How to remove pesticidal residues from fruits and vegetables?
Yes, this question is very much relevant in the present context. It’s an undeniable truth that most of the fruits and vegetables that we consume may have a high concentration of chemical residues. As it is alarming as it can get, we the consumers should know some steps to reduce the harmful presence of these pesticides in these food items.
Various consumer research organisations have carried out extensive research on the matter concerning the presence of pesticidal residues in fruits and vegetables. As a matter of fact, it is evident that the primary source of these residues in these food materials is due to the spraying of higher concentration of pesticides than required. When we consume these fruits and vegetables, residual remains enter into our body and cause various health issues.
Although the steps taken by the governments to sensitize farmers and vendors about the ill effects of using pesticides are going on, many of the health experts suggests that the consumers should prioritize the alternatives like organic food. As a consumer, we can do a lot to limit the harmful ill effects of pesticides by following certain simple steps. Here are some simple tricks that you can adopt at home:
Wash the food materials with running cold water
Wash the vegetables and fruits under running water. The water rinse method is always effective in removing many of the pesticidal residues. Be more thorough with some of the vegetables like bitter gourd and brinjal and fruits like apples, mangoes, grapes, guava and peaches as they might carry more residue in their crevices. Leafy vegetables like spinach should be washed separately.
Soak in vinegar solution
To remove much of the pesticidal remains it is advisable to soak these fruits and vegetables in a vinegar solution. The solution must be formed by the addition of 10 percent of white vinegar in 90 percent water. After 3 minutes rinse thoroughly with running water. Fruits like grapes and berries should be washed with extra care as they have a thin outer peel.
Soak in salt water solution for 5 minutes
Soak these fruits and vegetables of all varieties in water mixed with 1-2 teaspoons of salt for 5 minutes. Then rinse these in running water to wash out the salt. It is believed that almost 80 percent of pesticidal residues can be removed with the above processes.
Peel of the skin
For some of the fruits like mango and apple and vegetables like potato and carrot, peeling the outer skin is considered as the best way of removing pesticidal residues.