Whether eaten raw, as juice, or cooked, fruits and vegetables are an important part of the diet and should be consumed daily. Without fruit and vegetables, the person’s diet would likely lack many essential vitamins and minerals. People should make sure that fruits and vegetables are cleaned well to ensure that they’re free from bacteria and other contamination.
In recent years there have been outbreaks of E. coli contamination in produce like romaine lettuce, spinach and tomatoes. Not only can this type of contamination make you ill, in some cases it has even killed people. Obviously it’s super important that you clean your produce properly prior to juicing. If you’re washing your fruits and vegetables with plain water you could still be at risk!
There’s also pesticide contamination to worry about. Unless you buy everything organic you need to consider the fact that your fruits and vegetables may contain harmful pesticides. Just how damaging these are to the body in small amounts is a matter of debate but if they are killing the pests surely they can’t be very good for us either!
The EWR (Environmental Working Group) in the USA publishes a list each year of which fruits and vegetables are the worst offenders for pesticide contamination. The “dirty dozen” and the “clean fifteen” are lists of the most and least pesticide contaminated fruits and vegetables. Consider buying organic at least for the dirty dozen. Organic produce also beats conventionally grown produce in terms of nutrition. Organic is frequently more nutrient dense than conventionally grown produce.
Cleaning vegetables for juicing often is done with just plain water, but there is a chance that bacteria may still be on the fruits and vegetables. It is highly recommended to use natural sources of acids or a commercial vegetable wash when cleaning fruits and vegetables for juicing or preparing for meals and snacks. The use of a natural cleaning solution will ensure that all the bacteria is removed from the peels and skins of the fruits and vegetables.
A lemon, water, and white vinegar solution makes a good homemade solution for cleaning fruits and vegetables prior to juicing. This solution can be prepared easily with one lemon, a cup of normal drinking water, two teaspoons of white vinegar and a spray bottle for spraying the solution on the fruits and vegetables.
The first step to make this solution is to extract the lemon juice and pour it in the spray bottle. The two teaspoons of white vinegar and one cup of water should be added to the lemon juice. Then, shake the spray bottle well to mix the lemon juice, water, and white vinegar. The solution can be sprayed on the fruits and vegetables that are going to be juiced. After spraying the solution on the fruits or the vegetables, the produce needs to be rinsed off with water before juicing.
This vegetable cleaning solution can be made in few minutes. If people prefer, they can buy commercial washes, commonly known as “veggie wash.” These products are available in stores. It’s important to ensure that the product that you use is all natural and doesn’t contain any nasty chemicals.
Veggie wash has been considered as a better solution for cleaning, because many people don’t want to take the time to prepare a cleaning solution at home in this fast-paced world.
The homemade solution or the veggie wash is better than relying solely on water for cleaning vegetables for juicing, because normal water doesn’t have the ability to penetrate through the wax film applied to some fruits and vegetables.
It may also be helpful to use a scrubbing brush along with the cleaning solution. Cleaning vegetables for juicing is not the only preparation. Certain vegetables and fruits may need to be peeled before juicing. As a general rule, if the peel or skin can be eaten, it should be left on the produce.
People have differing opinions about which skins to eat. Some people prefer to peel a pineapple before juicing while others like juicing with the peel. Organic cucumbers can be juiced with the peel on, but it is advisable to peel cucumbers that are not organic. Sadly most of the Vitamin K in a cucumber is in the outer skin, so it’s worth buying organic. Citrus fruit is usually peeled before juicing. Carrots do not need to be peeled, but it is recommended to remove both ends.
The above video from Green Regimen shows you how to properly wash your fruits and vegetables!