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Discussion Starter #1
This seems like something I ought to know, but I've heard a variety of opinions on how much washing is neccessary for which fruits and veggies. What's your take? What amount of washing is generally sufficient to remove the majority of the stuff that will harm me?
 

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Well, that all depends on the fruit or vegetable you're eating and how much you know about it.<br><br><br><br>
Non-organic produce is impossible to completely wash clean. The best you can do in that case is get a peel-able item and peel it completely.<br><br><br><br>
Organic produce is much cleaner, at least in regards to chemicals. However, it's still very important to wash it good, especially if eaten raw.<br><br><br><br>
Now, some good things can be derived from a little dirt on your lettuce, for example, there are beneficial bacteria and other organisms found live only in fresh, organic, non-scoured produce that your body needs to be healthy.<br><br><br><br>
However, e. coli is a big problem, especially if you're not sure where your food is coming from or if it's coming from California, Mexico, or other states along the Mexican border. This is because the farms in that area, even organic ones, tend to abuse immigrant slave labor. The immigrants, not being allowed a bathroom break, usually defacate right in the field and this can spread e. coli like wildfire. Mexico is also known for using raw sewage as fertilizer.<br><br><br><br>
Personally, I only buy organic produce. I don't wash peeled fruits or veggies, I very lightly rinse my lettuce, celery, broccoli and kale. I scrub my potatoes rather thoroughly under warm water with a normal dish scrubber (But not so much as to lose the skin - lotsa fiber and other good stuff in that potato skin!).<br><br><br><br>
Any veggie I'm eating raw, in a salad, gets extra washing. Sometimes, if I get something from a questionable state or I'm unsure about it, I'll use a natural veggie wash (you can find these spray bottles in health food stores). Just spray it on the veggie and let it sit for a few minutes, then rinse away with water.
 

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we've had at least two threads talking about cleaning up produce here, i know. here's one:<br><br><br><br><a href="http://veggieboards.com/boards/showthread.php?s=&threadid=3002" target="_blank">http://veggieboards.com/boards/showt...&threadid=3002</a>
 

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well you mention different amounts of washing for different foods, which isn't touched on in the other threads i don't think, so here's what i do.<br><br>
when i have the income i will start buying more organic stuff, but right now i just can't. i buy organic fruit when i can, which i just rinse well. mainly cause i know other people pick through it with dirty hands in the store. blech. and i've seen fruit dropped on the floor and put back on the shelf.<br><br>
everything else i get is non-organic. i buy my carrots packaged, they're prewashed, so i don't do anything with them. stuff like peppers, celery, sprouts, lettuce, etc.. i use a fruit&veggie wash and rinse with hot water. mushrooms i just rinse in hot water cause they absorb the taste of the wash, blah, but i make sure to rub off dirt and junk really well. i heard you're not even supposed to wash mushrooms, just wipe off the dirt with a paper towel, but uhh.. eww!<br><br>
(oh, sprouts i tend to be extra careful with and rinse under really hot water for at least a minute, cause they're known to carry e-coli)
 

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I wash everything, even bananas, with dish detergent and rinse really well. Except for strawberries which I rinse and rinse. I buy organic if at all possible. I agree lady faile you never know who has touched it or where it has been.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I've seen some of the stuff that happens to produce in grocery stores, if nothing else. The produce et al market where I work shocks me with some of its standards. Both the owner and the top manager have been known to pick rotten or almost rotten produce out of the dumpster and 5-gallon buckets waiting to be dumped into the dumpster. Sometimes they eat it themselves, and sometimes they stick it out on the shelf, hoping a customer will buy it. That's the most extreme, but every produce worker there I know occassionally drops produce on the floor and puts it right back on the shelf/rack.<br><br><br><br>
It's with that background that I asked about washing, because sometimes I just don't know if I'm doing enough. If I peel and grate carrots, do I still need to wash them? I would think yes, because the peeler doesn't only touch the peel-- it also touches the carrot underneath, and it might spread bacteria from the outside of the carrot to the part that I'll eat.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Wow, that other thread on washing produce was so recent that I'm surprised I didn't see it.
 

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Two of Joe's links in Kreeli's linked thread actually contradict each other. One says to wash produce with diluted detergent and rinse with warm water; the other says never use detergent because produce is porous and can absorbe the detergent. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/huh.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":confused:"><br><br><br><br>
I soak my greens (kale, collards, spinach, spring mix, mustard greens, etc.) in my sink with a couple of tablespoons of vinegar for 5-10 minutes and then rinse them again.<br><br><br><br>
I have a vegetable scrubber brush and just scrub the other veggies with the brush under lukewarm running water.
 

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I'm always in a perpetual hurry, so I don't often scrub them as well as I should.<br><br><br><br>
I generally hand rub them under running water for 30 seconds or so.<br><br><br><br>
Leafy things get bathed in the strainer with the sprayer from the sink and tossed around to make sure they all get rinsed well.<br><br><br><br>
I know I've heard from a few different sources that the special fruit and vege wash you can buy is a waste of money and water does just as well.....I've also heard of people using diluted bleach (!!!!!?!) and dishwashing soap to wash them.<br><br><br><br>
I'd as soon eat pesticides as bleach, personally.
 

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I think I'll be avoiding produce from Mexico as much as possible.<br><br>
I don't fancy eating people's poop in my salad.<br><br><br><br>
Ugh.
 

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I never scrub them i just rinse off food like apples, grapes, carrots, etc. I thought scrubbing them you washed away the nutrients in the food.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
LC,<br><br>
Hmm... you might be onto something there. I remember in a discussion on canned vs frozen vs fresh produce, Soilman said that rinsing off canned produce such as kidney beans in effect washes away the remaining nutrients not already removed in the canning process. I wonder how much the same idea is true here.
 

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i don't think so. canned food is packed in liquid, so the nutrients can be leached out into the liquid after a while and washed away if you drain and rinse them. whole, fresh fruit and veggies shouldn't be affected much by washing i don't think
 

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I know that most of the nutrients in food like apples or potatoes the nutrients are in the skin. That is just where I came up with the conclusion. Also, i thought I had read it somewhere. Maybe Im wrong.
 

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no, lc, you're right, a good portion (if not most) of the nutrients in fruits and veggies is contained in, and <i>just under</i> their skins. i try to soak most of my fruits and veggies (except mushrooms) in lukewarm water for at least a few minutes before using, and i rarely peel anything (unless the peel is inedible or nasty tasting, of course).
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block"><i>Originally posted by FemmeDemonica</i><br><br><b>Two of Joe's links in Kreeli's linked thread actually contradict each other. One says to wash produce with diluted detergent and rinse with warm water; the other says never use detergent because produce is porous and can absorbe the detergent. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/huh.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":confused:"><br><br></b></div>
</div>
<br><br><br>
I am glad you noticed that. Often, different information sources present different information. An honest discussion of an issue will acknowledge this diversity of viewpoints, IMHO.<br><br><br><br>
There's a simple model of dialog/discussion which involves a Thesis, that as contradicted by an Antithesis, and these somehow merge yet are transcended to form a new Synthesis. This itself can become a Thesis in the next round. I believe "the Truth" is more closely approached through this process of dialog and Synthesis, where divergent viewpoints are taken account of.<br><br>
(Ask Max Power to explain the background, from Socrates to Hegel.) <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)"><br><br><br><br>
It is up to you to synthesize these conflicting viewpoints as you choose. I think "choice" is the opposite side of the coin, the flip side of which is "confusion." And I am "pro-choice," in more ways than one. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/grin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":D"><br><br><br><br>
But here would be some of my attempts at a practical synthesis for me:<br><br><br><br>
1. More information is needed.<br><br>
2. The article recommending one teaspoon of dishwashing liquid per gallon of water might be read--in the absence of the other dissenting article--by someone who might reason: "If one teaspoon per gallon is good, one tablespoon per gallon is even better." Read in conjunction with the dissenting article, it seems clear to me that *if* I were going to use this method, I would use *at most* one teaspoon of dishwashing liquid per gallon of water.<br><br>
3. We had talked before (I'm not sure whether it was in the same thread or not) about lists of the most heavily pesticide-laden produce vs. lists of the produce with the least pesticide residue.<br><br>
If I were going to use the "diluted detergent" method, I would only wash produce on the "most heavy pesticide" list using this method. Produce listed as having little or no pesticide residue would get washed in plain water.<br><br>
4. I might search out an eco-friendly dishwashing detergent in the health food store rather than use Palmolive (as did the experiment mentioned in Consumer Reports).<br><br>
5. I would look into using other additives (like vinegar or hydrogen peroxide) rather than detergent to add to the wash water.<br><br><br><br>
One other factor in my case is that I wash produce mainly to remove dirt and bacteria, so I almost always just use plain water and a vegetable brush. I also cook almost all of my food. If I were eating more food raw, I might change my methods.
 

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I usually wash my veggies with water for about 20 seconds. I live in Ohio and don't think I get my veggies from CA, or around Mexico. I've always been under the impression too that when we cook them it also purifies them--the heat that is. I've used the veggie wash and then forgot about it. As it is, though, I don't find myself coming down with anything dreadfull, not yet at least, so I figure I'm doing okay in the washing department.
 

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I only buy organic vegetables.<br><br>
I worked in a health shop so I know how they are treated.<br><br>
Vegetables fall or role on the ground.<br><br>
Vegetables that have to be cooked are rinsed, but if I buy apples I just rub them off (on my sweater or denim)<br><br>
I dont want to be over-hygienic with my food.<br><br>
The only thing I dont like is that (organic) fruit might be covered with beeswax.<br><br><br><br>
The washing of bananas seems very weird to me.<br><br>
Their supposed to be peeledright.?
 
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