Eating a varied diet, including plenty of fruits and vegetables, is one of the keys to good health. However, to stay healthy, it's equally important to makes sure the produce you consume is safe to eat. One way to do that is to make sure any fruits or vegetables you use have been washed well before you peel, cut, eat, or cook with them.
How Fruits and Vegetables Become Contaminated
Although most consumers understand that meat products need to be properly handled to prevent food-borne illnesses, some do not realize that fruits and vegetables may also cause illness if not handled and stored properly. In fact, in recent years, contaminated fruits and vegetables have been the culprit in several large outbreaks of food-borne illness. Some of the ways that fruits and vegetables can become contaminated include:
How to Wash Salad Greens
Salad greens require special attention. First, discard the wilted outer leaves; then prep and wash greens as directed for each type.
How to Clean Mushrooms
Other Tips for Washing Fruits and Vegetables
Tip: Even organic fruits and vegetables, as well as produce from your own garden or local farmer's markets, should be washed well.