Did you know that nutritionists say you should eat between 5 and 6 servings of vegetables and fruits every day? While this is great advice, you still need to wash fresh produce to remove pesticides and bacteria if you want to stay healthy. Researchers have studied how alkaline water may remove pesticides more effectively than regular water.
If you have been washing your produce with regular water, how do you know that toxins in your water aren’t getting in your food? With water ionizers, you can generate filtered, alkaline water and wash your produce with clean, high pH water.
Washing Produce with Alkaline Water
While most people point to meat for foodborne illnesses, produce gets recalled all the time for containing insects, bacteria, diseases, and chemicals. Pesticides are also found on most fresh produce, which is why you have to wash your fruits and vegetables before cooking and eating them.
Does alkaline water remove pesticides? Alkaline water has a high pH that is typically over 7.5 pH. Some research has indicated that due to its high pH level, ionized alkaline water is more effective at cleaning fruits and vegetables of pesticides.
It should also be noted that when water is generated with a water ionizer, it’s also purified and filtered, eliminating any contaminants and toxins. In our water ionizer reviews, we’ve noted which ionizers also reduce chemicals by 97% or more.
Hazards from Pesticides in Produce
Have you ever eaten fruits and vegetables without washing them first? You may have ingested a number of pesticides, including glyphosate. This is a common herbicide in the US, which has been studied for side effects including lung problems, headaches, and even death from vapors.
Even organic vegetables have been exposed to some herbicides. Another pesticide is rotenone, which is also used in organic farming. It can be 50 times as toxic as regular pesticides, and it’s been known to cause Parkinson’s disease in farmers.
While it’s unclear if all of these pesticides get into the edible parts of our food, it’s clear that many vegetables and fruit come in contact with harmful pesticides. In addition, some produce comes from other countries, which have lower agricultural standards than the US. This is why it’s so important to wash your produce before consumption.
Washing Produce with Alkaline Water
The best way to wash your fruits and vegetables with alkaline water is to have a water ionizer at home. You can generate alkaline water with a press of a button and customize the pH level. Due to its antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties, alkaline water is the best water for cleansing produce for cooking or eating raw.
The FDA has a recommended process for cleaning your produce that you can use with alkaline water. These steps for cleaning your fruits and vegetables include:
- Before prepping vegetables and fruits, wash your hands for 20 seconds using warm water and soap.
- Examine your produce for any bruised or damaged areas, cutting away and discarding these areas to avoid eating rotten produce.
- Use alkaline water to rinse vegetables and fruits away from any cutting boards or utensils to avoid contamination.
- Rub produce with your hands under water or use a vegetable brush to remove pesticides from stubborn fruits, such as squash and melons.
- Dry produce with a paper towel or cleaning cloth
- Discard the outermost leaves of leafy greens like kale, lettuce, and cabbage to avoid pesticide contamination.
While you may see videos of people soaking vegetables and fruits in alkaline water, it’s actually not recommended to wash produce this way. Experts say that this only disperses harmful bacteria and pesticides into the water, allowing it to soak back into your produce.
Produce may also have wax on the outside, such as apples. Alkaline water may help wash away wax faster than regular water, but you’ll likely still need to scrub away this residue.
Removing Pesticides with Alkaline Water
The FDA has only recommended to wash produce with tap water, but research shows this isn’t as effective as using alkaline water to remove pesticide residue. One NCBI study found that washing produce with highly alkaline water is more effective at removing pesticides.
With a water ionizer, you can customize your pH level to be higher than 9.0, which would make it even better for cleansing your produce and breaking down pesticide residue.
The study found that tap water only reduces pesticides by 10 to 40% while alkaline water is able to reduce pesticides by 40 to 90% instead. By using highly alkaline water to wash your produce, you’ll easily be able to remove toxins and pesticides from your food before cooking or eating.
How to Create Alkaline Water at Home
The easiest way to generate alkaline water is with a water ionizer. These systems typically have multi-step filtration, which provides 97% or cleaner water. For example, Tyent ionizers have several electrolysis plates and multi-step filtration to ensure that your water is free of chemicals like chlorine and toxins like lead.
There are also a variety of ionizers that are convenient for at-home use, such as countertop water ionizers and under sink water ionizers.
While pH drops and tablets can also create alkaline water, these methods don’t create the optimal level of alkalinity that a water ionizer can generate. You ideally want to create ionized water with a pH over 9.0 for cleaning produce.
Should You Use Alkaline Water to Wash Produce?
It’s important to use clean water to wash your produce. While the FDA hasn’t mentioned alkaline water with washing your vegetables and fruits, research shows that there are positive benefits for washing produce with a high pH. You’ll clean your vegetables with clean, filtered water and get rid of all pesticide residue just with a simple wash.