Beautiful, plump, deep red strawberries attract even the finickiest eater to enjoy their juicy sweetness in their mouth. They are the most popular berry in the world. Strawberries, like other berries, are famous in for their rich source of polyphenols. The phenols are not only responsible for its red color, but serve as potent antioxidants. These antioxidants help protect cell structures in the body and prevent oxygen damage in all of the body’s organ systems. Strawberries’ unique phenol content makes them a heart-protective, anti-cancer, and an anti-inflammatory fruit, all rolled into one. Thus, strawberries are considered a Super Food.
However, non-organic strawberries contain 54 pesticide residues (even after washing and using vegetable-fruit wash)
according to the Environmental Working Group. The EWG ranks strawberries as one of the three worst fruits and vegetables with regard to pesticide exposure. Peaches and celery are the other two. To make matters more alarming, California is gearing up to approve methyl iodide, a harmful pesticide¸ despite the urging of 54 eminent academic scientists and physicians to prevent the chemical’s use. Methyl iodide is so carcinogenic that it’s used to induce cancer in the lab and kills a wide range of tiny animals, weeds and fungi that live in soil, many of which are detrimental to strawberry growth. It has been shown to cause cancer, brain damage and miscarriages. Methyl iodide will be injected as a gas into the fields across California and the U.S., exposing farm workers and surrounding communities. It was approved during the George W. Bush administration as a replacement for methyl bromide, which was found to pose a potential threat to the ozone layer.
“Because of methyl iodide’s high volatility and water solubility, broad use of this chemical in agriculture will guarantee substantial releases to air, surface waters and groundwater, and will result in exposures to many people,” scientists wrote to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency before the chemical was approved by the federal government.
Not eating strawberries at all or eating only organic varieties may be your safest bet. No synthetic pesticides or fertilizers can be applied for at least three years on the soil before organic food can be planted and these materials are banned from use during the farming process. When your health and the health of your family is on the line think about which price you are really willing to pay.