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Cleaning Veggies

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Old 04-24-2008, 01:00 AM   #1
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Default Cleaning Veggies

I asked this in the veggie forum, but I have learned SO MUCH in this forum that I thought I would ask here too. This may seem like a DUMB question, but what, in your opinon, is the best way to clean your veggies? Do you use any of those sprays that are available at the grocery story? I read somewhere that some scrub their veggies. With what?

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Old 04-24-2008, 02:22 AM   #2
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I found this recipe on the Oprah show, Sophie Uliano, author of Gorgeously Green made this reccomendation:

INGREDIENTS
1 cup water
1 cup distilled white vinegar
1 Tbsp. baking soda
20 drops of grapefruit seed extract

Combine all ingredients in a large container. Then, transfer to a spray bottle with a pump. Spray mixture on produce, and rinse thoroughly after 5 to 10 minutes.
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Old 04-24-2008, 02:47 AM   #3
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I would not use anything with GSE (Grapefruit Seed Extract) in it if you are concerned about chemicals. If you buy organic produce this would add something that you are trying to avoid. GSE is not a "natural" product even though it sounds that way. Here is some information on what GSE actually is:

"Grapefruit seed extract is not grapefruit juice. It is also not grapefruit essential oil and it is most certainly not an herbal tincture. Chemical manufacturers take the leftover grapefruit pulp, a waste by-product from grapefruit juice production, and in an intensive, multi-step industrial chemical process, change the natural phenolic compounds into synthetic quaternary ammonium compounds. Typically, in chemical synthesis of this type, chemical reagents and catalysts are used under extreme high heat and pressure or vacuum. Synthetic ammonium chloride is one of the chemical catalysts used in this process.

The US Department of Agriculture´s (USDA) National Organic Program defines synthetic as “A substance that is formulated or manufactured by a chemical process or by a process that chemically changes a substance extracted from naturally occurring plant, animal, or mineral sources.” Grapefruit seed extract is a synthetic chemical compound, cannot be called “organic,” and is not permitted in organic food products."

"Further, the USDA did a grapefruit seed extract study and declared, “Confirming an earlier study by researchers in Germany we found that some commercial grapefruit seed extracts contain benzethonium chloride, a synthetic antimicrobial agent commonly used in cosmetics and only approved for topical use, at relatively high levels of 8%.”"

Here's the link: http://www.terressentials.com/truthaboutgse.html

As far as cleaning your veggies, you can buy brushes specifically for cleaning veggies or you can buy a scrubby sponge and deem it for that use only (so there is no cross contamination.) I just scrub with hot water myself. I buy mostly organic or local from the farmer's market, so I think a nice scrubbing is enough. If you want them cleaner a scrub with an all natural soap (like Dr. Bronners) and a rinse should be all you need. I think those veggie sprays are way over priced! Especially since cooking will kill most germs on food anyway. If you are really concerned you could peel your veggies, but you'll peel away some of the nutrients too.
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Old 04-24-2008, 04:34 AM   #4
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I have a green scrubbing pad (the kind you use for cleaning pots) that I use for root vegetables like carrots and potatoes. I don't scrub anything else, just quick rinse.
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Old 04-24-2008, 07:24 AM   #5
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We're a Shaklee Family, so I spray & rinse with a very diluted Basic H. Fruits, too. Its unbelieveable how much gross stuff comes off your fruits & veggeis!
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Old 04-24-2008, 07:29 AM   #6
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I use dish soap and water. For celery and root vegetables I have a vegetable scrubber. But basically everything gets washed in soap first!! You have to get the wax off to even taste the fruits and for veggies I don' like the taste of dirt or bugs!! (soap kills the bugs that you can't see)
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Old 04-24-2008, 08:48 AM   #7
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I scrub with baking soda or one of those green scrubby pads. I hate the wax they put on the veggies, especially on cucumbers, I scrub and scrub and it won't come off so I end up peeling them.

If I need to use soap, I use Seventh Generation dish soap, no fragance, dyes or anything like that.
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Old 04-24-2008, 09:40 AM   #8
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I just wash them with hot water. But I'm going to buy a Veggie scrubber and start scrubbing them with soap and water because that bug thing really grossed me out!
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Old 04-24-2008, 11:10 AM   #9
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wow... I barely wash anything--- my lettuce... that's about it... oh, and mushrooms, but only b/c I saw a program that they were grown in sh*t.

Apples get rubbed on a napkin before eating... other than that, I just cut up and serve... hmmmm....

Kinda dumb of me, huh? I don't know, though... I think that the world is taking TOO strong a stance on anti-bacterial, etc etc... maybe we're ruining our natural immunities by taking too strong of defenses in the first place?
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Old 04-24-2008, 11:27 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrandNewJen View Post
wow... I barely wash anything--- my lettuce... that's about it... oh, and mushrooms, but only b/c I saw a program that they were grown in sh*t.

Apples get rubbed on a napkin before eating... other than that, I just cut up and serve... hmmmm....

Kinda dumb of me, huh? I don't know, though... I think that the world is taking TOO strong a stance on anti-bacterial, etc etc... maybe we're ruining our natural immunities by taking too strong of defenses in the first place?
Yep, this is me.. I wash root veggies in some warm water, and the dirty veggies as well.. celery, mushrooms, cauliflour.. pretty much if you can see dirt I wash it.

Most of our veggies come from the farm market here, or right off our farm. I too think that we need some of this bacteria in our systems, there are so many new illnesses, and the more we go anti-bacterial crazy the more they grow, I don't see it as a coinsidence.
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Old 04-24-2008, 11:42 AM   #11
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Quote:
wow... I barely wash anything--- my lettuce... that's about it... oh, and mushrooms, but only b/c I saw a program that they were grown in sh*t.

Apples get rubbed on a napkin before eating... other than that, I just cut up and serve... hmmmm....

Kinda dumb of me, huh? I don't know, though... I think that the world is taking TOO strong a stance on anti-bacterial, etc etc... maybe we're ruining our natural immunities by taking too strong of defenses in the first place
Signed, Me!

Americans are the freakiest about everything being squeaky clean and anti-bacterial. Why do you think we have so many resistant strains of viruses now that are getting more and more deadly?

I grew up overseas and have travelled overseas extensively and Americans are the only ones I see obsessing over this.

Don't get me wrong, I am careful about cross contamination when working with poultry or risky meats, but in general, unless you have some kind of immune issue already, then most people don't need to be quite so obsessive about it.

I rinse my veggies and fruits quickly in running water to get whatever surface germs (people sneeze in grocery stores, kids play with the produce, whatever) off. But I don't scrub anything, or use soap (ick!), or any special mixtures or recipes.

And actually I've been known to buy an apple at the store, rub it on my shirt to "wipe" it off, and eat it in the car on the way home. I haven't died yet!

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Old 04-24-2008, 11:50 AM   #12
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I use a soap I got at an organic grocery store, can't remember the name, and the label has worn off.. oops! I definitely think it's a good idea to wash everything! Even organic fruits and veggies get washed in my house, just in case of bugs.

BrandNewJen - I think it depends on where you are buying your veggies, unless they are organic they are using pesticides, and I don't know that ingesting pesticides would necessarily boost your immune system.

-Aimee
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Old 04-24-2008, 12:04 PM   #13
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I just rinse too. Like Photochick I'm just cautious about 'meat juice' (as my son calls it, appetizing eh?) and cross contamination.

I'm also lazy and will spend the extra cash to get bags of cut and washed green beans, bags of washed spinach- ect.
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Old 04-24-2008, 02:26 PM   #14
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I am not terribly worried about bacteria (except e coli) but I know that many fruits and vegetables that arent organic are sprayed with 20-40 different kinds of pesticides. That's why I wash them.

I read that running water is sufficient for things like berries. I have some "Fit" spray I use on grapes and broccoli and a few other things. I wash the other stuff with a dish scrubby and a bit of soapy water but I mean it only takes me 10 seconds. I don't stand there scrubbing it to death.

Interesting info about pesticides if you google "dirty dozen" and pesticides.
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Old 04-24-2008, 02:45 PM   #15
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Wow! There are some great ideas here. Thanks! I want to be safe, not sorry. Thanks for the great tips!
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