Is Irradiated Produce Safe?
Q: How safe is irradiated produce?
I heard that the FDA is going to allow some vegetables to be irradiated in order to kill bacteria. How will this affect the nutritional content of the produce?
A: Their goal is to "protect" consumers, but as usual, the FDA has chosen incorrectly.
After the recent salmonella scares, the FDA has been forced into a corner. Right or wrong, they have to do something to make it look like they have control over the situation. So for the first time ever, the FDA is allowing fresh spinach and iceberg lettuce to be zapped with radiation in order to kill bacteria such as E. coli and salmonella.
While it's true that the process kills the fungi, parasites, and bacteria that can cause spoilage and disease, it also obliterates the good stuff in food, too. The fact is, irradiation turns even the most nutritious foods into junk foods.
Of course, studies conducted by the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) have found that many of the outbreaks and sickness associated with tainted produce are the result of viruses which CAN'T BE KILLED by the irradiation process. So irradiation is a double whammy - useless AND dangerous!
Now you know I always err on the side of natural first. So I wonder why the FDA would opt to let food processors zap food with a shocking amount of radiation when there are natural solutions to the problem of food contaminates.
It's clear to me that the FDA has allowed Big Agriculture to install an expedient solution. The alternative would be for this sluggish and notoriously under-staffed bureaucracy to put its agents in the field and do the hard work of controlling food contamination the right way-at the source.
Instead, the FDA took the easy route-as it often does-and our food will be less nutritious for it.
About the author
William Campbell Douglass I.I., M.D. has been called "the conscience of modern medicine."
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