Why are we talking about dangerous pesticides if these substances are meant to fight the pests that destroy our food? To what extent does their function to prevent, destroy or control any harmful organism cause health problems in humans? If the use of pesticides is unavoidable, can we say for sure that there are fruits and vegetables that contain less? We are bothered by so many questions about our well-being! It was not easy to find the answers there, but we tried.
Can hazardous pesticides be avoided in pest control?
Ever since alarm bells rang for climate change and consequently the reduction of bee populations, dangerous pesticides have been banned and alternatives that are harmless to humans and animals have been sought.
In private, everyone uses natural methods to eradicate ticks in the garden, keep ants away from home, and save their vegetables from fungus. Indeed, some pests are vectors of human or animal diseases and cause damage during the production, processing, storage, transport or marketing of food and agricultural products.
Therefore, the use of pesticides on a large scale is essential.
Going back to antiquity, we find evidence of Pliny the Elder recommending arsenic and of the Greeks using sulfur to regulate plant growth, remove leaves, dehydrate, dilute fruit, or prevent their premature fall. Are pesticides dangerous if used as substances applied to pre-harvest or post-harvest crops to protect the product from deterioration during storage and transport?
In the 17th century, the insecticidal properties of tobacco were protected and later, in the early 19th century, the use of copper sulfate saved grain from rot.
The further we progressed in time, the more synthetic organic chemistry developed.
Since the toxicity of different pesticides varies greatly, they can be categorized as hazardous pesticides and less hazardous pesticides.
Two criteria for the classification of pesticides
Pesticides can be classified according to their function as a biological mechanism or method of their application. Most of them work by poisoning pests. A systemic pesticide moves inside a plant that has absorbed it. With insecticides and most fungicides, this movement is usually up (through the xylem) and out. Increased efficiency may result. This is how systemic insecticides poison the pollen and nectar of flowers and can kill bees and other pollinators.
In 2010, the development of a new class of fungicides called paldoxins was announced. These work by taking advantage of natural protective chemicals released by plants called phytoalexins, which the fungus then detoxifies using enzymes. Paldoxins inhibit fungal detoxification enzymes. They are believed to be safer and more environmentally friendly.
Is it possible to distinguish fruits treated with dangerous pesticides?
The need for vitamins that we can supplement through fruits and vegetables is indisputable. How to get them without fear of dangerous pesticides? Many people living in urban areas are not blessed with their garden to produce a healthy harvest. They are forced to buy in the vegetable market and rely on the producers for treatment.
In fact, the way of cleaning the strawberries and washing the green salad gives partial security. Our experience with Covid-19 has alerted us and we wash fruits and vegetables well to protect our families.
However, there are foods that should not be washed before consumption. We mentioned above that the chemical penetrates the fruit. So he with thick skin does not absorb a large amount of pesticide. In addition, the peel is not eaten. At the same time, fruits whose skin is as thin as that of cherries are sensitive to pesticides and washing should be rigorous.
Which fruits have the least pesticides?
The more we talk about avoiding the use of pesticides, the more we see the opposite. So the solution is in our hands. Kiwi and avocado have no edible skin and the samples analyzed reveal only a quarter of the pesticides. This is not the case with Mirabelle plums and plums where the amount of substances exceeds one third.
Rinsing with cold water is not enough and given the lack of water in some areas, its use should be limited. If baking soda is added to the rinsing water, the effect will be stronger.
Even the skin of the fruit contains an abundance of useful nutrients, it is better to peel it.
Apples, pears, peaches, oranges, lemons, it is better to remove the peels instead of risking eye irritation and stinging, stomach upsets, nausea and vomiting. Although these problems pass quickly and are considered harmless, health is constantly under their influence.
Soaking in vinegar is effective, but you reject it because of the strong smell. If diluted with water, it will not be felt.
Our final recommendation is to buy organic.