Should You Be Washing Your Bananas?

sergio_kumer/ iStock / Getty Images Plus
sergio_kumer/ iStock / Getty Images Plus

Wash Produce, Peel & All

Before you eat an apple and other fruits and vegetables, you know you need to wash them. But what about bananas, oranges, avocados and other produce with peels that you don’t eat? Do you need to wash them, too?

Consider this: As you cut through a banana or grapefruit, dirt and bacteria can be transferred from the peel to the inside, edible portion of the fruit. And even if you’re not cutting the fruit, dirt and bacteria may be transferred as you peel, or simply handle the food.

Bottom line: When it comes to produce with inedible peels like bananas, melons, oranges and grapefruits, always wash them, peel and all, with these simple steps:

  • Wash all fresh fruits and vegetables with cool tap water immediately before eating. There’s no need to use soap or a produce wash.
  • Gently rub produce while holding under plain running water. For firm produce such as melons and cucumbers, scrub with a clean produce brush.

Read more about keeping produce safe and watch the video on how to wash produce.

Food & Nutrition Magazine
Food & Nutrition Magazine publishes articles on food and diet trends, highlights of nutrition research and resources, updates on public health issues and policy initiatives related to nutrition, and explorations of the cultural and social factors that shape Americans’ diets and health.