If you and everyone else in your family eat an apple daily, then you should be careful during your purchase.
If you have gone to the market recently, you would have noticed firm and extra shiny apples. These apples seem to be of excellent quality.
But, the truth is, you have been deceived. Apples look fresh and shiny because they are coated with a layer of wax.
This wax is full of chemicals that are not good for your health. Eating wax on apples daily can give rise to a number of health issues in the longer run.
So, to know more about the wax on apple, the safety instructions, and other information regarding the same scroll down.
Why Is There A Wax On Apple?
Coating Apples with a layer of wax is a common practice. Apple is a fruit with high water content. In order to protect itself from microorganisms, it has a natural wax coating over its surface.
This natural coating gets washed off due to cleaning with water. Because of this, the apple loses its shine and becomes dull.
In order to revive the shine of this apple, sellers put wax on apple. This process is called Edible Coating. The wax gives a shiny appearance to the apples.
This appearance attracts a lot more buyers. Moreover, it also helps in preserving these apples for a longer period of time.
Hence, wax on apples improves the storage life of apples and provides protection against fungus.
What Type Of Wax Is Used On Fruits?
The wax used on vegetables and fruits is food grade wax. The coating is Edible Synthetic Coating. It is not harmful because these waxes are derived from natural sources.
Some of the waxes used for edible synthetic coating are listed below:
- Carnauba Wax
- Petroleum Jelly
FDA permits a certain amount of wax coating. But, the human body is not capable of digesting high quantities of wax.
Apple Wax Side Effects
The natural wax coating on fruits and vegetables is safe to consume.
But, the synthetic wax applied on the apples is not easily digested in our body. This unabsorbed wax remains in the small intestine. This wax can cause various problems in the digestive system.
Other side effects include:
- Respiratory Problems
- Unabsorbed wax can cause Ulcers in the lining of Stomach and small intestine.
- Digestive Issues
- It can cause various infections in the gastro-intestinal tract.
According to various sources, the edible coating over fruits and vegetables is not harmful. But anything that is poorly digested in our body will cause havoc. So, you should always remove the wax.
Wax On Apple Causes Cancer?
This Wax might contain certain preservatives and artificial dyes. These dyes are added to improve the color of the fruit.
There is a rumor going around which says that this dye might increase the risk of cancer. This theory is mostly false because the wax is food grade wax which is approved and verified by FDA.
But, you must check the label on the fruits to confirm whether or not it has been verified by FDA.
How To Identify Wax On Apples?
In most of the cases, the extra shiny appearances of fruits suggest wax coating. There are other ways by which you can confirm the presence of wax on apples.
- You can rub the fruit against your palm. This rubbing will leave whitish powder on your palm. This powder indicates wax coating.
- Use a knife and scratch the surface gently. This will leave residues of wax on the knife.
How To Remove Wax On Apples?
Harmful or not, it is always a better option to remove the wax and then eat the fruits.
It is advisable to wash fruits and vegetables before consuming them. But, what if simply washing them with tap water is not enough?
Let’s talk about the other methods of removing wax from the fruits:
1. Wash With Lukewarm Water
Wash the apples with warm water. This will remove the wax coating. You should wash the apple again with tap water.
Wipe the surface of the apple with Vinegar. It successfully removes the wax coating.
3. Lemon Juice & Baking Soda
Mix equal parts of Lemon Juice and Baking Soda (1:1). Dip a vegetable brush into this solution. Clean the surface of the apple with this brush.
4. Apple Cider Vinegar
Another good option to remove the wax. Take a little portion of Apple Cider Vinegar on a tissue. Wipe the fruit properly. Wash it again with tap water.
A lot of people peel off the fruit and then consume it. But, I would not recommend this method because the peel contains a lot of nutrients.
You can use any of the above-listed methods to remove the wax layer.
What Is Food Grade Wax Made Of?
The food Grade Wax is mainly derived from natural sources. For instance, Carnauba Wax is derived from leaves of Carnauba Palm. Shellac is derived from female Lac-Bug.
Beeswax, Petroleum Jelly and Resin are other waxes derived from natural sources. Hence, FDA approves of the usage of this wax over fruits and Vegetables.
We are well-acquainted with the side effects of this wax. Some people might suffer because of it.
FDA has set up certain parameters that decide the quantity of wax used. But, it is not possible for us to keep track of the quantities used. Better safe, than sorry.
It is advisable that you remove the wax coating before consuming the fruit.