Fresh fruits and vegetables contain more vitamin and enzymes than overripe fruits and vegetables or ones that have been stored for any length of time. The longer a food is kept, the more nutrients it will lose. The healthiest foods are those that have been grown organically. These foods are grown without the use of insecticides, herbicides, artificial fertilizers, or growth stimulating chemicals. Organically grown food can be found in select health food stores. Check with your local store.
All foods must be thoroughly washed before they are eaten to rid them of any insecticides or other residue. Use a soft vegetable brush to scrub the foods, and then let them soak in water for ten minutes. You can also clean the food with nontoxic rinsing preparations, which are available in reputable health food stores. However, if the food is obtained from an organic source, water and a vegetable brush are probably all that are necessary.
Although most people are used to eating almost all cooked foods, fruits and vegetables should be eaten raw as much as possible. Vitamins and enzymes are extremely sensitive to heat and are destroyed in the cooking process. If raw foods are unavailable, frozen foods can be used as a substitute; however, do not use processed, canned, or boxed foods. If you find it difficult to eat raw foods, steam them slightly or use a wok.
Most fruits and vegetables should be eaten in their entirety, as they have valuable nutrients in all of their parts. Except for citrus fruits, eat the skins and rinds as well as the flesh. Eat the white part inside the skin of the citrus fruit for its vitamin C and bioflavonoid content. Except for lemons, however, keep the ingestion of citrus fruits to a minimum. Lemon juice is an effective healing agent. Add to a cup of warm water first thing every morning.