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Your health is your wealth, and ensuring that the food you consume is clean and free from harmful substances is one of the best investments you can make in your health. With food prep and a clean kitchen, the food items that often require meticulous cleaning are fruits. 

Understanding the Need to Clean Fruit

Before we delve into the cleaning process, it’s important to understand why we need to clean fruit. Fruits pass through many hands before they reach your plate, exposing them to a variety of germs and bacteria. Additionally, to keep them fresh and bug-free, some fruits are treated with pesticides and waxes. Washing your fruits effectively helps to remove these substances, ensuring you get the full nutritional benefits without any unwanted extras.

The Power of Baking Soda 

Baking soda, scientifically known as sodium bicarbonate, is a powerful yet gentle cleaning agent. It acts as a mild abrasive, perfect for scrubbing off dirt, and its alkaline nature can help neutralize the acidic chemicals that some fruits may have been treated with. In a study conducted by the University of Massachusetts, a solution of baking soda and water removed more pesticides from apples than water alone or a commercial bleach solution.

Preparing Your Baking Soda Solution

To clean fruits with baking soda, start by making a baking soda solution. You’ll need:

  • 1-2 tablespoons of baking soda
  • A large bowl of water (about 1 litre)

Stir the baking soda into the water until it’s fully dissolved. The solution doesn’t have to be exact. Just ensure that there’s enough baking soda to make the water slightly cloudy.

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The Cleaning Process

Step 1: Initial Rinse

Before introducing the baking soda solution, it’s essential to rinse the fruit under running water. This initial step helps to wash off loose dirt and any easy-to-remove substances.

Step 2: Soak in Baking Soda Solution

Place the fruits in the baking soda solution, ensuring they are fully submerged. Let them sit for about 12-15 minutes. This soak helps to break down any waxes or pesticides that may be on the fruit’s surface.

Step 3: Scrub

After soaking, scrub each piece of fruit gently with a soft brush, such as a vegetable brush. This scrubbing action, combined with the baking soda solution, helps to remove any stubborn substances. Be sure to scrub all around, paying special attention to crevices where dirt and residues may hide.

Step 4: Final Rinse and Dry

Ensure you rinse the fruit extensively with cool running water to eliminate any remnants of baking soda after scrubbing. Finally, dry the fruit with a clean towel or leave them to air-dry. This drying step not only makes the fruit ready to eat or store but also removes any remaining water that could encourage the growth of mould or bacteria.

Considerations and Safety Measures 

While cleaning fruits with baking soda is safe, it’s important to be mindful of a few things. Firstly, avoid using this method on very soft or porous fruits like berries, as they might absorb the baking soda solution, altering their taste. Secondly, never use soap or detergents to clean your fruits as they can leave behind harmful residues. Finally, always rinse your fruits thoroughly after cleaning to ensure no baking soda residue is left.

In Conclusion

Using baking soda to clean your fruits is a safe and effective way to ensure you’re getting all the health benefits from your food without any unwanted substances. With these steps in mind, you’re on your way to consuming cleaner, safer, and tastier fruits. Remember, your health is your wealth.