Afraid so – although boiling or steaming your veg will kill off any bacteria, there’s still the problem of pesticides, which can wash off the vegetables and hang around in the water while cooking.
Thorough washing and drying with clean kitchen paper will help remove any pesticide traces. It’s also recommended to remove traces of soil before you start preparing the veg, as this can contain a host of bacteria, including E. coli, and contaminate work surfaces.
Dr Emma Davies is a science writer and editor with a PhD in food chemistry from the University of Leeds. She writes about all aspects of chemistry, from food and the environment to toxicology and regulatory science.