Did you know that the majority of salmonella outbreaks, an illness we commonly associate with raw egg and meat products, are actually contracted from raw PRODUCE? Wow, yes, and that’s not even getting into the whole gamut of food borne illnesses ( E. coli, Shigella, Norovirus, Hep. A, Giardia lamblia, Rotavirus…)!
Raw fruits and vegetables can become contaminated when they come in contact with people ( the workers who haven’t washed their hands before handling your veggies!! ) and surfaces ( fertilizer or soil that contains MANUER! ) that have previously been in contact with raw meat products or fecal matter. Your produce, thank goodness, does not undergo pasteurization or any other cooking procedures, and so when contaminated, infectious organisms can thrive, spread, and cause food poisoning.
DON’T let this make you wary of produce, however! Let’s not underestimate the necessity of glorious greens and the lot of raw produce in our daily diets. It’s true that we need these things to even have a functioning immune system in the first place, so what can we do to protect ourselves?
VINEGAR to the rescue!
A 2007 study by “Cook’s Illustrated” magazine found that using a method called the ‘vinegar wash’ was the most effective and affordable method for washing produce, removing 98% of the infectious bacteria without scrubbing. Source: http://www.livestrong.com/article/538214-vinegar-vegetable-wash/#ixzz2Ubs4tRRa. Vinegar is an antibacterial, and hey, no risk of side effects here!
This is super easy and as I said cheap to do. Simply get yourself a spray bottle, add 3 cups water, 1 cup white vinegar, and upon bringing your lovelies home from the grocery store, spray them down ( enough to coat the veggie or fruit in question, so anywhere from 3 – 7x ), and rinse immediately!
Try this at home 😀 & enjoy safe and tasty healthy eating all!