Food and You: A Guide to Healthy Habits for Teens

By Marjolijn Bijlefeld; Sharon K. Zoumbaris | Go to book overview

APPENDIX F

Pesticides

How do pesticides and other chemicals in food affect my risk for cancer?

According to the expert report from the American Institute for Cancer Research, Food, Nutrition and the Prevention of Cancer: A Global Perspective (1998), there is no convincing evidence that eating foods containing trace amounts of chemicals such as fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, and drugs used on farm animals changes cancer risk. Exposure to all manufactured chemicals in air, water, soil, and food is believed to cause less than 1% of all cancers.


Should I avoid vegetables and fruits so I’m not exposed to pesticides?

Definitely not. The benefits of eating a diet based on vegetables, fruits, and grains far outweigh any potential harm from exposure to food additives, pesticide residues, and other chemicals in these foods. There is convincing evidence that diets high in vegetables and fruits protect against cancers of the colon, rectum, stomach, lung, mouth, pharynx, and esophagus. Eating plenty of produce probably also results in lower rates of cancers of the breast, bladder, pancreas, and larynx. Eating five or more servings of vegetables and fruits a day could cut cancer risk by as much as 20%. It is always a good idea to take the usual safety precautions. Scrub vegetables and fruits before eating them to remove any residues, along with any dirt or bacteria. Other tips are listed below.

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Food and You: A Guide to Healthy Habits for Teens
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Acknowledgments xi
  • Introduction xiii
  • 1 - Making Healthy Choices 1
  • 2 - The Basics 13
  • Additional Reading 31
  • 3 - Going Veg! 33
  • 4 - Fast-Food Trap 47
  • Additional Reading 60
  • 5 - Get off the Couch 61
  • Additional Reading 74
  • 6 - Losing Weight the Healthy Way 75
  • Additional Reading 86
  • 7 - Risky Business: Tobacco, Alcohol, and Drugs 87
  • 8 - Be a Smart Food Shopper 109
  • Additional Reading 125
  • 9 - Setting Up Your First Kitchen 127
  • 10 - Eating Disorders 143
  • 11 - Special Diets 153
  • Appendix A 171
  • Appendix B 189
  • Appendix C 193
  • Appendix D 195
  • Appendix E 221
  • Appendix F 223
  • Appendix G 227
  • Index 247
  • About the Authors 253
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