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Wash Fruit Properly: Remove Pesticides And Germs

Fruits from conventional cultivation are almost always contaminated with pesticides, which primarily stick to the skin. In addition, there is a certain germ load, especially in the case of fruit sold openly that has been touched by different people. It is therefore important to wash the food thoroughly before eating it.

Isn’t peeling better than washing?

Of course, with the peel, you would also remove most of the pesticides. However, in and just below the peel are most of the vitamins that you would just throw away.

Another argument against peeling unwashed fruit is that you could transfer germs to the flesh with the peeling tool. You should therefore first wash the fruit carefully and then eat it with the peel or, if you do not like it, peel the fruit.

Wash fruit thoroughly

Only clean the fruit just before eating it and not right after you buy it. This would destroy the natural protective layer of the fruit and the fruit would spoil faster.

How you wash the fruit depends on how delicate it is:

  • Berries: Pour some water into the sink, add the berries and gently stir them. Remove and drain or pat dry in a colander.
  • Rinse peaches, nectarines, and other fruits with fairly soft flesh under running water for half a minute. Gently rub it clean with your fingers.
  • For apples and raw vegetables such as carrots, you can use a vegetable brush with bristles that are not too stiff.

Baking soda removes pesticides

Plant protection products cannot always be completely removed with pure water. If you want to be absolutely sure that these are washed off, proceed as follows:

  • Pour water into a bowl and sprinkle in some baking soda.
  • Soak fruit for 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Rinse thoroughly.

This process is a bit time-consuming due to the waiting time, but it can make sense if, for example, small children want to eat fruit from conventional cultivation with their skin on.

Can fruit from organic farming be eaten directly?

Although this is not treated with pesticides, you should also wash fruit from your own garden and organically grown fruit carefully. The reason: many types of fruit grow close to the ground and come into contact with soil. Numerous microorganisms live here, which can lead to diseases and which must therefore be washed off.

If you like to collect berries in the forest, dangerous parasites like the fox tapeworm could attach themselves. Also, keep in mind that even with unsprayed fruit you don’t know how many hands they have passed through.

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Written by Emma Miller

I am a registered dietitian nutritionist and own a private nutrition practice, where I provide one-on-one nutritional counseling to patients. I specialize in chronic disease prevention/ management, vegan/ vegetarian nutrition, pre-natal/ postpartum nutrition, wellness coaching, medical nutrition therapy, and weight management.

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