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Food Safety for Healthy Life

What are the steps to maintain food hygiene?

Quality of food plays an important role for leading a healthy life.

The key principles for maintaining food hygiene are:

1. Usage of quality pulses, fruits and vegetables. Maximum nutrients are available by the usage of organically grown pulses, fruits and vegetables. Organically grown food items are free from the pesticide residues. In case of using conventionally grown food items, they should be cleaned thoroughly before the consumption.

2. Raw and cooked foods should be kept and stored separately to prevent contamination of cooked food.

3. Food should be cooked for appropriate length of time and at the appropriate temperature to kill pathogens.

4. Food should be stored at the proper temperature.

How to clean vegetables and fruits before cooking or consumption for getting rid of pesticide residue?

Steps to clean vegetables and fruits before cooking or consuming:

1. Wash fruits and vegetables in running water 4 to 5 times.

2. Soak them in salt water for few minutes to kill germs.

3. Wash them with potassium permanganate solution and wash them again with fresh water before consuming.

4. Peel skin off fruit or vegetables whenever possible. Even if you plan to remove the skin from fruit or vegetable wash them first to eliminate pesticide residue.

What is the best way of consuming vegetables?

Ingesting raw vegetables is usually considered to be the best, but cooked vegetables kill harmful elements and increase the ability of digestion. Out of the multiple ways of vegetable cooking steaming of vegetables is better than boiling as it minimises loss of nutrients.

Boiling results in the loss of water soluble nutrients such as vitamins and folates present in vegetables, especially when the water is salted. Also the method of using running water to cool the vegetables and draining any excess water after cooking increases the loss.

Vegetable streaming reduces the loss and allows the vegetables to retain most of their nutrients, texture, shape and color. Streaming time varies slightly from vegetable to vegetable, however the streaming time needed is generally not more than ten minutes for any type of vegetable.

Where to buy pesticides and chemicals free vegetables and fruits?

Pesticide and chemical free vegetables can be acquired from :

* small vendors who are not well versed with the use of chemicals.

* Through certified organic markets.

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