Carl Winter: Hi! My name is Carl Winter. I am a spokesperson for the Institute of Food Technologists and also a Food Toxicologist on the faculty at the University of California, Davis.
Today we're discussing food safety issues that pertain to chemical contaminants that might be in the food supply. In the last segment we discussed the importance of nutrition in maintaining a healthy diet. Most health professionals will agree that a diet rich in consumption of foods and vegetables and grains can significantly reduce one's risk of heart disease and many types of cancers. This is also very important in reducing one's exposure to potentially hazardous chemicals. If we have a diet in moderation, we're not over-consuming a particular food and we're going to be limiting our exposure to chemical contaminants in the food supply.
It's important to realize that there are no red light foods, or green light foods, the food that you shouldn't eat at all or foods that you should eat tremendous amounts of. What we really need to think about is a diet in moderation and generally a diet that does contain large amounts of fruits and vegetables and grains.
One of my concerns as a food toxicologist is that many people are very worried about the potential exposures that come from chemical contaminants like pesticide residues in fruits and vegetables and grains. As a result, they might reduce their consumption of those foods. In this case, I think, the benefits from consuming those foods far outweigh the potential health risks from exposure to those very low levels of chemicals in the food.
In the next segment, I'll talk about other options that consumers may have for purchasing organic products if they're still concerned about the presence of chemical contaminants in their fruits and vegetables and grains.