There has been great discussion and confusion over baby carrots lately. It seems some feel that these little veggies, perfect for small hands and a quick snack, may not be quite as healthy as once thought. As with anything else regarding health, it is always best to do all of your own research before setting into full-force panic mode.
In addition, we always recommend organic fruits and vegetables whenever possible.
Here are a few things to consider when choosing baby carrots:
- The leading manufacturer of organic baby carrots (Grimmway) use a smaller type of carrot for their baby carrots. The carrot has a slender core, and grows to about 8-10 inches in length.
- The carrots do undergo processing where they are peeled, cut, washed and packaged. The edges become round because they go through a tumbling process where carrots rub together.
- Carrots are washed with a water/chlorine solution that is comparable to tap water.
- Representatives from Grimmway state that the chlorine is necessary to help prevent the spread of food borne pathogens. An interesting point to keep in mind is that the chlorine allowed in swimming pools is actually less than what is allowed in public drinking water.
- The white color that comes to the surface of the carrots is actually due to dehydration not chlorine – a quick soak in a bowl of ice water will help revive the carrot.
As defined by the EPA, Chlorine is a pesticide. Its purpose is to kill living organisms. So it would make sense that when you ingest chlorine, it kills some parts of our body like the healthy bacteria in your gut and intestinal flora for instance. Chlorine is a highly toxic, yellow-green gas most heavily used in chemical agents like household cleaners and can be found in the air near industrial areas especially around paper processing plants.
Exposure to Chlorine has been linked to health problems such as sore throat, coughing, eye and skin irritation, rapid breathing, narrowing of the bronchi, wheezing, blue coloring of the skin, accumulation of fluid in the lungs, pain in the lung region, severe eye and skin burns, lung collapse, a type of asthma known as Reactive Airways Dysfunction Syndrome (RADS).
Chlorine is also added to the public water supply. So not only are you drinking it, but you are absorbing it through the largest organ in your body, your skin. In fact, 2/3 of human absorption of chlorine is from inhaling the steam in the form of chloroform and fast absorption through your open pores in the warm shower or bath.
The inhalation of chloroform is a suspected cause of asthma and bronchitis, especially in children… which has increased 300% in the last two decades. Other health risks associated with chloroform is cancer, potential reproductive damage, birth defects, dizziness, fatigue, headache, liver and kidney damage. Chloroform is also found in the air and in food, like baby carrots.
As with any product you are concerned about – it is best to gather all the information you can before making a decision. Call the company that you purchase your baby carrots from and ask about their growing and manufacturing process. Most are willing to provide honest answers to your questions. If you are going to choose baby carrots, stick to the organic ones.
Remember, eating produce, of any kind, is far better than eating a bag of chips.
- The Alternative Daily