As I watched the Oprah show and saw 85 year old billionaire, David Murdock, go to Costco to purchase his fruits and vegetables for juicing, it brought to mind the question,”Should he be juicing non organic vegetables?” By the way, I can’t be sure but it sure looks like he uses the Jack LaLanne Juicer to me.
Now, I didn’t know if the Costco trip was for the benefit of us ‘everyday’ folk or whether or not he always buys his fruits and veggies at Costco. I’m not a Costco shopper, but I didn’t think he was placing organic fruit in his shopping cart.
Organic or Non Organic Juicing
It’s been my practice to juice organic fruits and vegetables if I am going to go through the trouble of juicing. However, if my funds are low and I purchase non organic produce which are not juiced but are relegated to normal eating and cooking. Juicing to me is like ‘mainlining’ vegetables, where as eating and cooking them is not. If I’m going to mainline, I’d prefer to have the purest most nutritional dose of my veggie of choice.
Non Organic Juicing Hesitation
The major reason for my hesitation to juice non organic produce is that I don’t want to mainline toxic pesticides directly into my system. The fact that non organic vegetables are usually grown in less nutrient rich soil is another factor, but the presence of toxins is my primary reason for using organic rather non organic.
Getting rid of the Toxin Concern
I read on one site that removing the outer skin of non organic vegetables severely cuts down on the presence of toxins. The only problem it also severely cuts down on the presence of nutrients too.
Other sites recommend washing the fruits and vegetables in a solution of water and hydrogen peroxide , followed by a washing with vinegar and water and rinse. This process purportedly removes most of the bacteria and toxins.
My Juicing Thought Process
As I write this there are pears, apples and oranges sitting in my fruit bowl, that will go bad over the next few days if not eaten (my family loves fruit when it first comes in the house, but after day 2 or 3 the fruit becomes invisible and they no longer see it in the fruit bowl). So, to prevent the fruit from going bad, I’d prefer to juice it.
After combing the internet I think I’m going to use a combination of both organic and non organic produce for juicing. The organic greenery (that I like to juice to mask the taste of wheatgrass) will be 100% organic. The other fruits and veggies that I usually cook or nibble on throughout the day, will be organic when money permits, and non organic otherwise. I’ll apply the pesticide removal methods a outlined above and juice the produce if I find that they’re about to hang around too long (juice them before they go bad).
When I stop to think about it, no one is ever really 100% sure of what’s on store bought produce (organic or not). After all, some organic vegetables have traces of pesticides and bacteria. I guess the only way to be sure is to grow it myself (not going to happen anytime soon). Oh, and as for David Murdock from the Oprah show…he’s 85 years old and going strong. If he’s using non organic fruit, I guess it can’t be all that bad.
How do you tackle the organic vs non organic produce quandary?
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I was just revisiting N.W. Walker’s book on Fresh Vegetable and Fruit Juices (What’s Missing In Your Body), and he refers (p.13) to how we can protect ourselves from pesticides and poisons, because the toxins are concentrated into the fibres, rather than the enzymes, atoms and molecules. I was trying to further research this, but am not sure how to navigate the superficial blether on organic-versus-non-organic – frustrating that there doesn’t seem to be any clearly visible research on this specific issue. But again, I guess it is all too variable: different countries, soil qualities, nutrient contents, etc, etc, etc. I’d be really keen to know more though. I live in Italy, where the climate is good, and food doesn0’t require bombardment by toxins, but I know that people stil spray a lot. Though a lot of veg and fruit is grown semi-organically, I’m still nervous to juice it- I have a Norwalk juicer, which takes out all the fibre. 🙂
Hi Clare (sorry for the late response),
When I first started juicing I spent quite a lot of time researching the best juicers, the best vegetables, the best time of day to juice, the best juicing combinations and so on. I exhausted myself with research. I ended up buying 2 juices, an Omega masticating juicer and the Jack La Lanne centrifugal juicer.
After purchasing both juicers I realized the best juicer is the one you’ll use frequently. Each has its pros and cons, but bottom line, if it stays on the kitchen counter unused, it’s not doing any good.
I fully relate to your concern regarding the toxins in the vegetables and whether juicing them would introduce the toxins at a higher concentration since the fiber is pulled from the juice. After juicing for some time I realized I would try to buy the best I could with the money I had. I tend to juice only organic veggies, but we’re never really guaranteed that the veggies were not sprayed unless you know your farmer and the farmer’s practices.
I believe the benefits of juicing far out weigh the possibility of ingesting unwanted toxins found on organic foods (I read that washing the veggies with vinegar and then again with hydrogen peroxide does much to neutralize the toxins on the skin). Just think about the number of toxins we’re introduced to on a daily basis from sources far beyond our control. What I do in my attempt to combat the unwanted and uncontrolled toxins is to include bentonite clay (which helps to remove toxins and heavy metals) and diatomaceous earth (which helps to kill unwanted parasites) in my daily regimen.
We live in a toxic world and we’re fighting an uphill battle. My advice is to do the best you can do with what you’ve got and continue to read, research and learn.
Felicia, thanks so much for this response- great stuff, and yes, I’m with you on all of that! And the advice on the clays is fab – I’ll go and look into that more – many thanks again and happiest of new years to you!
I am going to start washing my non organic vegetables in vinegar and water and than rinse because juicing with organic is too expensive for my wallet .
It can get expensive purchasing organic fruits/veggies. I find I get a better deal on those items if I go to my local farmer’s market. The grocery store mark up makes it nearly impossible to switch to 100% organic.
I have been wondering about organic versus conventional produce for juicing recently, especially since I’ve really been consuming lots of leafy greens in my juices and green smoothies – and I’m making them for my son too. So, I finally fit into my schedule a weekly trip to a store that carries organic greens and veggies – as you said – ignorance is bliss, but when you know better, you do better.
After 2 solid weeks of juicing non organic I started breaking out with a pretty bothersome rash on my torso. I took a break and switched to organic only and it’s getting better. I totally agree with your mainlining statement.
Mike since originally writing this post, I’ve stopped juicing non organic fruits and veggies. I didn’t experience a rash or anything like that. I just couldn’t bring myself to continue juicing the non organic stuff.
I’m at the point now where I’m going to try my hand at a bit of organic container gardening. This way I’ll know where my veggies came from so I won’t have to be afraid to juice them.
There are certain fruits and vegetables that should always be bought organic because washing or attemps to remove persticides don’t really work.
1.) Peaches & Nectarines ; 2.)Apples ; 3.) Bell Peppers ; 4.) Celery ; 5.) Berries ; 6.) Lettuce ; 7.) Grapes; 8.) Anything that you eat alot of or eat all the time.
OH crud! i just typed a nice comment and as soon as i submitted it it come up blank! Please tell me it worked properly? I do not want to submit it again if i do not have to!
Sorry Brian, your comment didn’t come through.
Not sure what the issue was. Try submitting it again (Sorry).
Costco sells ORGANIC carrots. I use their organic carrots for juicing. However, thus far, they do not sell organic apples, so I purchase organic apples at Henry’s. Recently, I have been adding a little bit of ORGANIC GINGER and it really tastes great!