Does Buying Organic Really Remove All Exposure to Pesticides?

Playing Drs. Rx: How to Wash Your Produce to Remove Pesticides

During a discussion of the safety of the popular herbicide glyphosate - a key ingredient in the weed killer Roundup, The Doctors also address possible ways to limit exposure to pesticides and other chemicals in your food.

ER physician Dr. Travis Stork suggests soaking your produce in water and baking soda. He says to use 1 teaspoon of baking soda and 2 cups of water, noting that one study found that water and baking soda removed pesticides better than just using water alone or using water and bleach.

Watch: Organic Poultry Explained

But what about buying organic? Will that rid your food from possibly harmful pesticides?

According to The Mayo Clinic,"most synthetic pesticides" are not permitted in organic farming, but they note that "certain natural pesticides and a few synthetic pesticides approved for organic farming" can be present in organic food. They also go on to explain that some forms of pesticide residue can be found on organic foods due to the limited "pesticides approved for organic farming or because of airborne pesticides from conventional farms."  

In addition to washing all your fruits and vegetables under running water, The Mayo Clinic also suggests getting your foods from a variety of sources, as this can reduce your chances of being exposed to a single type of pesticide.

Watch: The Real Deal: Organic Tampons

Another possible way to limit exposure is to remove the outer leaves of leafy vegetables and the peeling of fruits and vegetables. The Mayo Clinic says the peeling of the skin may remove some pesticides, but will also remove some of the food's nutrients.

More information on the differences between popular food labeling terms like "100 percent organic," "organic," "made with organic," and "organic ingredients" -- plus whether "organic" and "natural" mean the same, can be found here.