Survival Health–Wash Those Veggies!

            You’ve heard about the Salmonella scare concerning certain types of raw tomatoes.  Who hasn’t by now?  I think it’s kind of confusing.  The news the other night tried to explain which tomatoes were affected, but they didn’t clear it up for me at the time.  What they’re saying now though is that the little grape or cherry tomatoes are OK, and so are any tomatoes with a little bit of the vine still on them.  Of course, anything you grow yourself is OK, too.  What’s more, one day the government says one thing, then they say another.  Tomatoes from Florida and California are safe now, they say, but they weren’t sure at first.  Which ones aren’t safe?  About the only thing authorities can do is wait to see who gets sick next.  Not very comforting, is it?


            Well, you know what?  I don’t worry about it!  That’s right.  There’s a simple solution.  It’s something you can do at home, and you don’t have to worry about which tomatoes are questionable either.  Ready for an easy answer?  Just wash your tomatoes.  I’ll bet your grandma did that years ago, and you forgot all about it, didn’t you?  Why do you suppose somebody from the government or your favorite news man hasn’t told you about that??


            Now, you can buy a commercially available vegetable wash if you like, but it’s cheaper to make up your own vegetable wash that’s all natural.  Just use white vinegar and water.  Some say you can use hydrogen peroxide, too, but some say that’s not safe.  The good old FDA is wishy-washy on the whole thing, so look out for yourself on this one.  My husband Survival Sam would say that’s typical of the government.


            Here’s what you do to make your own vegetable wash.  You can mix up equal parts of water and white vinegar and put it in a spray bottle, or you can mix up that same solution in a bowl.  Be sure you label your spray bottle, and don’t let the kids get at it.  For soft skinned vegetables like tomatoes, you’ll want to let them soak in the bowl for a couple of minutes, then rinse them with plain water, and pat dry.  You can use the spray bottle to spray fruits and vegetables with harder skins, use a brush to scrub, then rinse them off, too.  This works because the acetic acid in vinegar kills bacteria and helps to dissolve the wax and pesticide residues found on the skins of many fruits and vegetables.


            Take a little time to be sure you’re feeding yourself and your family safe, clean food.  Also, you’ll be ahead of the game if you buy organic produce, since it won’t have the pesticides you’ll find on grocery store produce.  Of course, if you grow your own, you know where it came from and how it was grown, which should put your mind at ease, too.  Wherever you get your veggies, it’s always a good idea to wash them up.  Something so simple can really be a life saver.  And, after all, that’s what survival is all about.