Which Is Better? Fresh Or Frozen Vegetables And Fruit?
It needs be said right off that nothing beats produce that you grew in your own back yard.
You pick it, and either cook it or eat it raw and it lost a minimum of its vitamins and minerals.
No preservatives or any other kind of additives.
Having stated the above lets look at the pros and cons of fresh or frozen vegetables.
The Advantages Of Frozen Vegetables
Because freezing preserves food, no unwanted additives are needed in bags of frozen vegetables or fruits.
So it should be fairly easy to find frozen vegetables or fruit in or at the market with the only ingredient listed, being the vegetables or fruits that are in the packet.
The first step to freezing vegetables necessitates blanching them in hot water or steam to kill bacteria and arrest the action of food-degrading enzymes.
And that process does cause some water-soluble nutrients like vitamin C and the B vitamins to break down or leach out.
But the subsequent flash-freeze does lock the vegetables or fruit into a relatively high nutrient-rich state.
The Problems With Much Fresh Produce
If you can buy produce that was grown by local farmers, then eating fresh might well be a good way to go.
Why the "might well be"?
Because many local farmers are now economically forced into using artificial fertilizers and pesticides, and if they do, then consider carefully before buying from them.
That said, you don’t know how the ones in the frozen packets were grown either
Produce For Shipping Is Generally Picked Unripe
Fruits and vegetables destined to be shipped to the fresh-produce aisles around the country are typically picked before they are ripe.
And picking them before they are ripe gives them less time to develop a full spectrum of vitamins and minerals.
Many fruits and vegetables do continue to ripen on the counter-top but the will never have the same nutritive value as if they had been allowed to fully ripen on the vine.
In addition, during the long haul from a farm to a market or store, fresh fruits and vegetables are generally exposed to lots of heat and light, which degrade many of the nutrients, especially the delicate vitamins such C and the B vitamin thiamine.
Recent Research On Fresh or Frozen Fruits and Vegetables
Scientists from Leatherhead Food Research and University of Chester in the UK, carried out forty tests to measure nutrient levels in produce that had been sitting in a fridge for three days, compared to frozen equivalents.
They found more beneficial nutrients overall in the frozen samples, in everything from broccoli to blueberries.
In fact, in two out of three cases, the frozen fruits and vegetables packed higher levels of antioxidants, including polyphenols, anthocyanins, lutein, and beta-carotene.
So Which Should You Buy?
When fruit and vegetables are locally in-season, then probably buy them fresh and ripe, if you know their source.
Otherwise buy and serve the frozen ones!
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