Dangerous vegetables: How to avoid nitrate poisoning





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To grow vegetables faster and to ripen fruits quicker, farmers use   fertilizers. Some of these stimulants, especially nitrates, are harmful to human health.

Nitrates can cause and increase the risks of pregnancy complications, such as anemia, premature birth and preeclampsia.

The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) defines nitrates as substances that can cause cancer.

Children are particularly susceptible to the influence of nitrites, the risk group is those children with diseases of the digestive tract.

The leaders in nitrate content are:

  • Lettuce leaves;
  • Leaf cabbage;
  • Early greens: spinach, green onion, dill;
  • Radish.

The average amount of nitrates is contained in:

  • Cauliflower;
  • Broccoli;
  • Cucumbers;
  • Celery;
  • Courgettes;
  • Radish;
  • Carrots;
  • White cabbage.

The least of all nitrates is contained in:

    • Brussels sprouts;
    • Peas;
    • Beans;
    • Sweet pepper;
    • Potatoes;
    • Tomatoes;
    • Onion.

How to protect yourself from nitrates in vegetables:

To lower the content of nitrates in vegetables that have already been purchased, will help the following rules:

  • Wash the  vegetables carefully , remove  the leaves, be sure to the skin, because this is the part of a vegetable that has the  greatest accumulation of nitrates, cut off the greenery parts of potatoes, carrots, etc .;
  • Soak vegetables in cold water (15-20 min). It is especially important to soak before washing and eating greens/herbs;
  • Add lemon or pomegranate juice to vegetable salads - it destroys nitrate compounds;
  • Do not store vegetables for a long time, especially in warmth, and do not keep salads, juices and defrosted vegetables in the refrigerator for over 24 hours. Otherwise, nitrates can be converted to nitrites - carcinogens (dangerous toxin that  causes cancer).

Helpful Tips

  • When buying green onions, dill and parsley, pay attention to their color, it should not be dark green. Otherwise, it indicated that the greens were sprinkled with nitrate.
  • When choosing cauliflower, see that there are leaves at the base. If they are not, then it is likely that they have dried up from a large number of fertilizers.
  • Too  bright color of the fruit or its ideal shape should also alert you.
  • Be aware that yellow spots on cucumbers indicate an increased content of nitrates, green areas on potato tubers are also harmful.

First aid for nitrate poisoning

If after eating fresh vegetables your stomach began to hurt, you feel the so-called colic, vomiting or diarrhea began, then perhaps it is  a nitrate poisoning. In this case, you need to :

    • Cleanse the stomach by inducing vomiting;
    • Take  adsorbent PECTIN COMPLEX;
    • If in an hour or two it gets worse - call an ambulance.



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