Fruits and vegetables are very healthy foods for our health, since they have multiple properties that provide great benefits for our body, benefit our immune system and make us less susceptible to many diseases. However, since they are foods that are often consumed raw, it is necessary to wash them properly before consuming them, although it is also advisable to do so even if we are going to cook them well.
Why wash and sanitize fruits and vegetables
Fruits and vegetables can become contaminated during the planting, growing, storage, transport or handling process. This contamination can come from dirt or also from the use of chemicals and pesticides. For this reason, to reduce the risk they may have to health, it is necessary, as we said at the beginning of this article, to wash food properly before consumption .
Although washing directly with water alone can do a lot to remove dirt, we can also add a natural product to enhance the disinfection effect. Examples of natural products to achieve ecological disinfection can be the acid provided by lemon or vinegar.
If you want to learn how to disinfect fruits and vegetables in a natural and ecological way , follow these simple steps:
- Before washing food, you must wash your hands well, so as not to contaminate them further.
- It is best to wash fruits and vegetables before peeling or cutting them. This is so, because when you wash them whole (with peel or skin) you prevent pathogens that could be present in the crust from penetrating inside the food.
- Place the food for a minimum of two minutes under the tap, or in a container with water. To remove excess dirt, you can use a brush or sponge, yes, soap-free.
- Eliminate some external leaves in fruits and vegetables, since they can be a source of contamination for the rest of the food as it is the part in which the most contaminating agents have accumulated.
- To disinfect, you can use several natural products that we will explain below so that you can choose the one that suits you best, as well as the steps to follow depending on the product you choose.
- If you are cutting or cooking food right after this wash, clean the handling utensils.
The best ecological products to disinfect fruits and vegetables
Some of the home-made products to disinfect fruits and vegetables , before cutting and cooking them, which are the most suitable and effective are:
It is a common product in homes. It is inexpensive and easy to get, which is also useful for cooking or treating various health problems. Another of its uses is the cleaning and disinfection of fruits and vegetables.
What we will do for cleaning is dilute a tablespoon of baking soda in a liter of water and place the fruits and / or vegetables for 10 minutes to soak.
Vinegar is one of the best natural disinfectants that exist, since it eliminates any kind of bacteria by having a very powerful antimicrobial effect. Like bicarbonate, vinegar is an inexpensive product, easy to find and very common at home. In addition, it is good for health and does not have any toxic effects.
To prepare it, we must dilute a glass of vinegar in a liter of water and soak our fruits or vegetables for 10 minutes. We can also sprinkle the food with spay before cooking it.
Lemon has great disinfectant and antibacterial properties, thanks to its high concentration of citric acid. It can be combined with vinegar to make a natural disinfectant that kills any pathogens from fruits and vegetables.
To prepare it, we must mix water with lemon and vinegar well. Using a ratio of three parts of water to one of vinegar and lemon is enough. We must soak the fruits and vegetables for 10 minutes. After removing them, we will rinse them and dry them with a clean cloth or towel.
Hydrogen peroxide is bleaching, disinfectant and fungicide (to eliminate fungi), with which you can clean and disinfect vegetables that tend to create fungi, such as mushrooms or tomatoes.
In its preparation, you have to be very careful because it is a very strong and toxic product if ingested in a certain amount, so we must dilute it very well in water, using only 10 ml for every 250 ml of water. After using it, we must wash the food very well before consumption.
Another effective preparation is to combine vinegar, lemon juice and baking soda . In this way, we can enhance the disinfectant effect and use them to wash potatoes, radishes, carrots and other types of tubers. It is better to use vinegar, lemon or bicarbonate, rather than hydrogen peroxide, since they do not have toxic potential.