The COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak makes it more important than ever to keep our immune systems strong by eating clean, antioxidant rich real foods such as fruits and vegetables.
But according to research conducted by the Environmental Working Group (EWG), nearly 70% of the fresh produce sold in the US contains potentially harmful chemical pesticides.
“Although we believe consumers should be concerned about pesticide residues on the food they eat, the health benefits of a diet rich in fruits and vegetables outweigh the risk of pesticide exposure,” says EWG toxicologist Alexis Temkin PhD in their latest release, EWG’s 2020 Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says “Currently there is no evidence to support the transmission of COVID-19 associated with food.” The agency does recommend that consumers wash their hands for 20 secs with soap and water before preparing or eating food.”
Other tips to protect yourself, according to EWG, are peeling produce whenever possible, removing the outer layers of leafy greens, and washing all cutting boards and surfaces where food is prepared with soap and warm water. While these measures are mainly to prevent foodborne pathogens, in light of the current pandemic, extra measures to ensure sanitation are recommended.
“For most Americans, choosing all Organic diet is not possible, so these guides can give consumers the tools to provide their families with a mix of both conventional and organic fruits and veggies without the pesticide punch,” says Dr. Phillip Landrigan, a pediatrician and epidemiologist who is the director of the Program in Global Public Health in the Schiller Institute for Integrated Science and Society at Boston College, in the EWG release.
According to an article published in Quartz, fresh produce may go to waste if you are in quarantine so the next best thing is to stock up on frozen versions of the healthiest fruits and vegetables.
Eat healthy, Be healthy, Live lively
Have a healthy day, stay home!