How to avoid swallowing pesticides?

They are everywhere around us. In the water we drink, in the food we swallow, and even in the rain and fog! How to limit their consumption? The point with our specialists.

Odile Chabrillac

Pesticides? These are the chemicals whose name ends in "cide" and whose mission is to kill living beings deemed undesirable for one reason or another. Insecticides eliminate, as their name suggests, insects? ; fungicides, fungi; and herbicides, herbs called "bad" ... More and more used in agriculture, they are found on our plates and are now suspected of having a harmful action for our health. So much so that, on the occasion of the Grenelle de l'environnement (1) , the wish was expressed to see their use halve in ten years. But by then, what to do?

1. Grenelle de l'environnement, an organization that aims to promote measures in favor of the environment in France.

Eating and gardening organic

This is the simplest and most radical solution, but also the most expensive. However, even the French Agency for Food Safety (Afssa) recognizes that "the organic production method, by prohibiting the use of phytosanitary products synthetic [technical name of pesticides, note], reduces the risks associated with these products for human health ". And a study of children shows that switching to organic food quickly removes insecticide residues from their bodies (in Environmental Health Perspectives, February 2006) .

If you do not have the possibility of radically changing your diet, let's try to focus on organic fruits and vegetables. Owners of a vegetable garden can grow their produce using natural methods - many garden centers offer courses and some have already removed pesticides from their shelves.

Take the seasons into account

The planet will only get better! Fresh and seasonal products generally contain less chemical additives and preservatives than long-distance or off-season products. These are produced all year round by a process called "above ground", which requires treating them more than abusively.

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