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Old 06-24-2012, 02:48 PM
 
3,595 posts, read 3,573,502 times
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Pesticides are usually non polar molecules, for the very purpose that they can't be washed off in the rain. Therefore, they are not easy to wash off with just water. Take for example capsaicin which is nonpolar. Everyone knows that you simply can not wash off capsaicin easily with soap and water from your hands after cutting hot peppers. Non-polar molecules are hard to get rid off unless you start washing your produce in oil.
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Old 06-24-2012, 10:49 PM
 
Location: Eugenius
593 posts, read 1,188,340 times
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Peeling can only help if you are ultimately unable to buy organic apples. The growers put the pesticides on, then after being picked the apples are shellacked with wax which keeps the pesticide residues inside next to the skin. Simply rinsing them off is ineffective due to the wax applied that makes the apples look shiny and beautiful in the store. My grandpa was a farmer all his life and ALWAYS peeled his apples, it's just a good habit to get into.
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Old 06-25-2012, 09:20 AM
 
Location: Floribama
13,486 posts, read 29,434,352 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pawporri View Post
You are entitled to your opinion, but you are wrong. I prefer not to eat fruits and veggies with Round-Up ready seeds that withstand massive doses of pesticides that don't even kill the bugs they were designed for, and killing thousands in 3rd. world countries. Look at the lawsuits against Monsanto.
Most fruit comes from grafted trees and plants, not ones grown from seed. Maybe you're thinking of corn?
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Old 06-25-2012, 09:22 AM
 
Location: Floribama
13,486 posts, read 29,434,352 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fibonacci View Post
Pesticides are usually non polar molecules, for the very purpose that they can't be washed off in the rain. Therefore, they are not easy to wash off with just water. Take for example capsaicin which is nonpolar. Everyone knows that you simply can not wash off capsaicin easily with soap and water from your hands after cutting hot peppers. Non-polar molecules are hard to get rid off unless you start washing your produce in oil.

I heard once the pesticide contains some sort of wax base. I always wash fruit with a bit of Dawn detergent, it gets rid of the cloudiness of the skin, and makes it squeaky clean too.
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Old 07-01-2012, 09:16 AM
 
Location: Ohio
17,998 posts, read 13,238,246 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Angorlee View Post
I recently read that apples have a huge amount of pesticides that are on them(and/or in them). Would peeling an apple make it pesticide free or maybe much less?
Uh, this....

Quote:
Originally Posted by AnonChick View Post
You can get rid of any pesticide residue from apples by rinsing them and then drying them with a paper towel or napkin before you eat them.
...is wrong.

The primary issue is organic substances versus inorganic substances.

Anything that is organic is readily absorbed by the human body. It needs only to touch your skin. It is true that some organic chemicals need to come into contact with mucus membranes in order to be absorbed (eyes, nose, mouth, vagina, anus or any open wounds or scabs).

An illustrative example would be ALAR. ALAR was used as a pesticide on apples and other pomes (like pears etc) a few years back. The energy from ultraviolet radiation from the Sun was enough to break the bonds of the covalent electrons in ALAR, causing it to break down into constituent compounds.

One of those compounds was UDMH or Unsymmetrical Dimethylhydrazine -- if I remember correctly is (CH3)2NNH2.

UDMH is an oxidizer. It was used as a liquid propellant fuel for the Lance nuclear weapons system, as well as other SRBMs.

Prior to UDMH, Nitrogen Tetraoxide was used. The UDMH with what we called "flaming red acid" (Nitric acid that is 86% pure and has a red hue to it unlike the Nitric Acid you used in high school or college chemistry classes which was only 0.1% to 1% pure and may have had a yellow tint to it). The reaction of the two liberates pure O2 which is burnt and directed through the nozzle to produce thrust.

Anyway, these organic compounds are readily absorbed by anything organic, so washing the skins or rinds of fruits and vegetables will not remove the toxic compounds, since they have already been absorbed into the flesh of the fruit or vegetable.

UDMH is particularly dangerous, due to the fact that it is highly toxic to humans and animals in minute quantities, and can cause death or temporary or permanent damage to internal organs or the nervous system.

I believe California has declared UDMH to be a carcinogen, too (although I'm not real clear on that).

In an ideal world, you would know exactly which pesticide and herbicide was used, so that you can read studies about them, but that is rarely the case. As a matter of course, you should wash and scrub the outside of fruits and vegetables before eating them.

Not all organic compounds are toxic to humans. Some are toxic only in high doses, but then some are cumulative, meaning that your body never rids itself of the toxic organic compound, and you keeping adding to it (very similar to the build-up of inorganic compounds like lead, chromium, mercury et al in the body).

If you are concerned about it, probably the best thing you could do is vary your shopping routine, so that you buy fruits and vegetables from different vendors, or buy only from those vendors that you implicitly trust or know don't use pesticides, or if they do use pesticides, you know what they use and can research it to see if there are any hazards.

All organic compounds have an "half-life" -- they eventually break down into sub-compounds, even when not bombarded by UV radiation, or electromagnetic radiation including both ionizing and non-ionizing radiation (like radio waves), or in contact with other inorganic or organic compounds. It could be days to decades or even centuries. It's just something you need to be aware of.

Chemically...

Mircea
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Old 07-15-2012, 11:39 PM
 
Location: Burlington, Colorado
347 posts, read 689,184 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pawporri View Post
You are entitled to your opinion, but you are wrong. I prefer not to eat fruits and veggies with Round-Up ready seeds that withstand massive doses of pesticides that don't even kill the bugs they were designed for, and killing thousands in 3rd. world countries. Look at the lawsuits against Monsanto.
Well for starters, roundup isn't made to kill bugs... its an herbicide.
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Old 07-16-2012, 12:06 AM
 
Location: Out there somewhere...
38,677 posts, read 45,030,920 times
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As mentioned above Round-up is a herbicide, not a pesticide.
Directly underneath the skin is the highest concentration of vitamins. So, if you skin your apple too thick, you remove a lot of the vitamins.
On the other hand, the skin itself is where the pesticides are that the farmer uses to keep the apples from being eaten by worms and other vermin.
So, it's a trade-off. Either you wash your apple really good, and eat it with its skin for best vitamines, or you skin it really thin, to remove the pesticides, but with keeping as much vitamins as possible.
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Old 07-16-2012, 06:26 AM
 
Location: In a house
13,258 posts, read 34,604,245 times
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Mircea:

that's all well and good - Alar is no longer used, so it has nothing to do with whether or not you should (currently) peel apples.

As to the other - pesticides are generally sprayed, and fine particles become airborne. Joe's Organic Farm might not use dangerous pesticides, but Susie's Agribusiness Orchards -right next door- might. And so, some of that nasty dangerous carcinogenic spray will float on the breeze and end up on Joe's apples. He gets to maintain his Organic certification, and he gets the benefit of Susie's dangerous insecticide.

Fun stuff, air.

Furthermore, if this stuff were that much of a risk, then you'd see apple-eaters who don't peel apples all getting cancer. Since the majority of people who eat unpeeled apples, don't get cancer, I'd say the risk isn't even worth posting about, let alone worrying about. And of course there's always the wrench in the machinery: how do you know it was the insecticide in the apple that caused this guy's cancer? How do you know he didn't once get exposed to asbestos when he was a kid, never knew about it, and it started the molecular mutation in his cells 20 years ago and has only recently shown up during a routine doctor's visit.

Either rinse your apples and enjoy them, or put on your tin foil hat and avoid eating apples entirely. You can minimize risk, or you can eliminate risk. Rinsing does one, rejecting the food completely does the other. Organics give you a false sense of security because you have no way of knowing what airborne contaminants are wafting along the breeze to that organic farm from somewhere else. Best to grow your own food in a greenhouse, if you are seriously worried about contaminants.
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Old 07-16-2012, 08:00 AM
 
Location: Floribama
13,486 posts, read 29,434,352 times
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Any fruit in the "rose family" will likely have lots of pesticides and fungicides as they are extremely disease prone. This includes apples, peaches, plums, cherries, pears, and strawberries (apples and peaches are probably the worst).

Other fruits such as bananas, citrus, grapes, kiwi, persimmon, and melons probably have less.
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Old 07-18-2012, 06:28 PM
 
Location: Fredericksburg, Va
5,119 posts, read 12,716,950 times
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The peel of an apple is where the nutrients are...wash and dry it...you'll be fine.
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