Are we eating poisoned fruit and vegetables?

Did you know that many supposed fresh foods from the supermarket and fruit shops have possibly dangerous doses of chemicals on them and some that are actually banned?

Christopher Zinn from Choice magazine even as far back as April 2008 said that people are using too much pesticide or the wrong ones because they don’t understand how to use them properly. There are 12 different fruits and vegetables that probably contain these pesticides and these include peaches, strawberries, nectarines, plums, apples, bell peppers, celery, cherries, grapes, potatoes, spinach and raspberries.

This report back then went on to say that of 27 samples of strawberries tested, three had higher than recommended MAX residue limits and that some were ‘laced with banned chemicals’. These were bought from a variety of stores and 63% had residues of more than one pesticide with 4 having 4 different pesticides. Strawberries were one of the fruits that had higher residue of pesticides.

The National Toxics Network followed up by saying that young children were particularly at risk from even low levels of these pesticides and although there is no proof, there’s growing evidence of links to cancer, Parkinson’s disease and learning problems. The results of this Choice magazines study alarmed the National Toxics Network and they went on to say that ‘regular ingesting of food with pesticide residues is a form of slow poisoning’. This has been “measured in our blood samples and also in our breast milk samples.”

The study showed that the potentially deadly pesticide Endosulfan-beta was found on some of the strawberries. This pesticide belongs to the class of chemicals such as DDT which are organochlorins and they build up in our bodies and tissues. This chemical was being investigated around the world. It is banned because it stays in our bodies permanently.

So why is this stuff in our food?  There are around 300 different chemicals which are allowed on our food and are permitted by Food Standards Australia and New Zealand. Foods must meet a certain standard but this organisation stopped doing thorough testing quite some time ago.

This report said we need a proper national testing program because at present, testing is left to government but unfortunately the types of tests are limited and testing isn’t regular enough. It was found that 80 samples had pesticide residues exceeding the legal limits and 107 samples contained residues of pesticides not allowed on fruit and vegetables.

So when people ask me why they should eat organic – this is why. Also make sure if you don’t eat organic that you wash and peel your vegetables at least to try to reduce your exposure. Oh …..and take your supplements as protection. Which ones? Ask your nutritionist.

Reference: Choice Magazine – Christopher Zinn 2008

Jenetta Haim

Jenetta Haim

Jenetta Haim runs Stressfree Management at 36 Gipps Road, Greystanes, and specialises in assisting your health and lifestyle in all areas by developing programs on either a corporate or personal level to suit your needs. Jenetta has just published a book called Stress-Free Health Management, A Natural Solution for Your Health available from your favourite bookstore or online. For more information and to get in touch, visit her website at Stressfree Management.

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