The health benefits of consuming fruits and vegetables are widely documented; but how do you even wash your mangoes and other raw fruits before consuming?
A section of the Ghanaian population put their mangoes in basins/buckets, pour water on them, wash the mangoes in still waters and pick them up to eat. Some don’t even wash their raw fruits and vegetables before eating. Washing your mango and other raw fruits in still waters may not make them safe for consumption.
The reason why you should not wash your hands in still water is the same reason you shouldn’t wash your mangoes/raw fruits in still water for consumption. You are likely to pick a proportion of the germs back, if you wash in still waters.
Mangoes and other raw fruits are picked from several palaces in our environment; most of these places are otherwise contaminated, with a high probability of making some of these fruits contaminated too. You are likely to pick up some of these dirt or pathogens into your gut, when you wash your mangoes and other raw fruits in still waters.
Majority of fecal-oral route transmitted diseases such Gastroenteritis, Giardiasis, Hepatitis A, Hepatitis E, Shigellosis, Typhoid fever, and Cholera are associated with contaminated fresh fruits and vegetables (Roever, 1998).
Consumption of unwashed raw fruits/vegetables is a possible risk factor for campylobacter infection (Verhoeff-Bakkenes & Jasen, 2011).
Campylobacteriosis is an infection by the Campylobacter bacterium. It is among the most common bacterial infections of humans, often a foodborne illness, characterized with diarrhoea, dysentery etc.
Other studies conducted elsewhere in India suggest that fruits and vegetables, if consumed unwashed, can lead to food poisoning, because of the presence of intestinal infectious microbes on the outer surfaces (Ankita & Harwani, 2014).
You should also be more concern about the safety of the fresh fruits and vegetables you consume today because of the farming practices being adopted by the Ghanaian farmer today. Most farmers in Ghana now depend heavily on chemicals for crop production, including fruits and vegetables, with little or no education on proper application of these chemicals. You might not know, some of these fresh fruits and vegetables may still have traces of applied chemicals on their outer surfaces which might cause health problems, if they are not washed properly.
What is the proper way of washing your mango/raw fruits and vegetables?
Wash your hands under clean running water; follow this up by washing your mangoes/raw fruit under clean running water. Washing your mangoes, carrots and other raw fruits/vegetables this way will make them safe and germ-free for consumption.
Your health is greatly affected by what you eat; eat safe foods.
Live a Preventive Health Life!
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