Each year, the release of the Environmental Working Group’s ‘Clean Fifteen’ and ‘Dirty Dozen’ lists inspire countless health conscious shoppers looking for the best deals on produce as free from toxic pesticides as possible.
This year’s list followed a similar pattern, with the exception of two well known crops that contain “less than one percent detectable pesticides,” even in their non-organic iteraitons.
Despite the good news, there’s still a pesticide-related problem that shows few signs of slowing in the United States, especially with Bayer set to take over Monsanto in the coming weeks.
The bad news is that glyphosate and other chemicals are more abundant in our environment than ever before. But the good news is that organic food is making a comeback, and there are plenty of ways to mitigate your exposure to harmful pesticides.
One of them is by using the best quality homemade produce wash for your fruits and vegetables, and according to a study from the University of Massachusetts, there is one clear winner that happens to be cheap, simple and effective.
University Study Reveals: Baking Soda Better Than Chlorine for Washing Vegetables
The study, published in October 2017 in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry by a team of six researchers, looked at three main possible solutions for cleaning produce: pure water, a solution of bleach containing chlorine, and a solution made of water and baking soda.
Organic Gala apples that were coated with the fungicide thiabendazole, or phosmet, a pesticide, by the scientists for research purposes, were used for the study. They were then washed with one of the three solutions.
“We want(ed) to see whether or not the factory level (of washing) is already effective” for removing the chemicals, lead researcher Dr. Lili He said.
In the end, the winner was clear: baking soda took home the number one spot, because of its ability to make the pesticides degrade faster than the other two solutions.