Brits have been warned to wash these food items before eating or risk getting food poisoning or diarrhoea.

Some produce has a higher risk of germs and pesticides which means they need to be thoroughly washed before consuming.

Failure to wash fruits and vegetables before ingesting can lead to health complications such as food poisoning, sickness and diarrhoea, a team of experts has warned.

These popular supermarket buys include the likes of strawberries, cranberries and kale.

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To help protect you and your household, the team at online healthy food retailer MuscleFood, has rounded up the items that you must wash before you eat.

Should I wash fruit and vegetables before eating?


Strawberries must be properly rinsed to remove dirt and debris as the most likely fruit to contain a strong cocktail of pesticide residues. 


Skipping the scrub and washing for potatoes could cause foodborne illnesses. As a root vegetable, potatoes can absorb the pesticides and germs in the soil. 


Leafy greens like kale have been linked to harmful germs including E. Coli and Salmonella, so it is important to thoroughly rinse them under water. 


Make sure to get into the surface of leaves when cleaning lettuce because it can sometimes contain enough germs to make people sick.

Avoid buying spoiled or soggy salad as it could be a tale-tale sign something is wrong. 


Research has shown that cranberries often contain a high combination of pesticides because farmers use them to get rid of insects that attack the fruit. 


Apples have been found to contain multiple pesticides, including some at high concentrations.

Stone fruits

Peaches, plums and nectarines have been found to have strains of listeria which can cause sickness. Rub firmly and rinse under running water to wash away. 

The experts advised that loose vegetables and fruits can be touched frequently in supermarkets.

This means that it's key that we take steps to thoroughly clean produce can help keep germs at bay.  

Fruit and vegetables can also become infected with harmful bacteria from animal contact and substances in the soil or water, MuscleFood explained.

However, there are further contamination risks even when you're back in the house you should be aware of due to improper storage and food preparation. 

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Ashleigh Tosh from said: “Many people will be surprised to know that fruit and vegetables can cause serious illnesses if they are not properly washed before consumption. 

“It is important to wash, rinse and scrub produce under running water before eating to prevent the consumption of dirt, bacteria and pesticides that can make people poorly. 

“Fruit which has been found to contain higher levels of pesticides includes strawberries and cranberries, so more care should be taken when washing them. 

“It is also important to ensure leafy greens like lettuce and kale have been properly washed to minimise the risks of food poisoning.”