What's Best: Frozen, Fresh, or Canned?
By Sara Butler
Most people are under the impression that fresh is always best. The truth of the matter is that the best fruits and vegetables you can eat are the ones that fit into your budget. Fruits and vegetables, whether they're fresh or not, are full of important nutrients that help you to stay healthy and reduce your risk of developing chronic disease, such as diabetes, heart disease, and some types of cancer, among other things. Most people don't get the five servings of fruits and vegetables they should per day, which is why you should take your fruit and vegetables however you can get them! Here is what you should know to help you stay healthy about frozen, fresh, and canned fruit and veg.
What most people don't realize about frozen fruits and vegetables is that they're picked and flash frozen at the peak of their freshness. It's like having a fresh garden in your freezer! As long as the frozen fruit doesn't have added sugars and the vegetables aren't in any type of sauce, they're just as good -- and maybe a little better -- as fresh produce.
While fresh fruits and vegetables may win big in the taste department, it's only really the best if you manage to get it when it's at its peak of ripeness. Remember, unless you buy local produce at your local farmers market, the produce you buy at the store is picked, then transported for days (sometimes longer) to reach you. By that time, many of the nutrients have started to degrade. Fresh fruit and vegetables are good for you, but they're not always going to pack the most nutritional punch.
When you do buy fresh, make sure to wash your produce off under water to help remove any residue.
Canned versions of fruits and vegetables can usually be found at the cheapest prices, but they also have much the same nutritional profile as fresh or frozen vegetables. The only vitamins that can be impacted by the heating process used for canning are Vitamin B and Vitamin C, but other nutrients stay intact -- even if it sits in your pantry for months. The only thing to be on the lookout for with canned vegetables is salt content. Often, salt is added for flavor. You can circumvent this by buying lower sodium versions and then rinsing the vegetables once you take them out of the can.
No matter your budget, you can eat healthy as long as you know what to look for!
To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Lynnwood, Wash.