Fruits should be an integral part of our diet. They provide our body many vitamins and minerals that are required for healthy and balanced life.
Winter is the season of the year, when of course – we can buy fruits, depending on climate zone, where we live, but typically – some of the fruits are available only in summer. And what to do, when it is middle of the winter and we would like to drink blueberries smoothie? Or that moment when we have irresistible will of eating red berry muffin…
Essentially – there are two (and maybe even three) options. First – you’re waiting for the summer (blaaaahh – that idea is out) 😉 Second – you’re going to the shop and buying sweets – to drown out that voice in your head: “Eat something sweet, right now, no matter what!”. And the third one (double “H” – the Healthiest and the Hardest) – you’re buying frozen fruits and preparing desert like you deserve – indeed royalty style!
Season fruits – fresh vs. frozen
Basic question – to eat or not to eat. Results of the study, conducted by lead researcher Dr. Diane Barrett of University of California-Davis (UC Davis), reveal that the nutritional value of frozen fruits and vegetables is generally equal- in comparison with the fresh ones. And even in some cases – frozen fruits have better nourishment than the fresh ones.
Before going on your table
Usually we used to think that fresh fruits and vegetables are healthier than processed. And sometimes it is true. But you have to bear in mind, what’s happening with the product, before you will buy it. After harvesting – it can be exposed to high temperatures, kept in cold storage, treated with pesticides to ripe faster or retain a nice color. And for some of you – surprising can be a fact, that many stores use special fine mist sprays to give a food better, more attractive look. That sounds great… Isn’t it? And on the other hand – we have frozen fruits that are frozen just after harvesting…
But still! Fresh better than frozen – sometimes…
There are products that… shouldn’t be frozen in order to save their nutritional values. Don’t you believe? So you have to know that food that has high amount of vitamins B, C and folate – should be eaten fresh. These ingredients are water-soluble, which means that they can be leeched from the food during processing. It concerns for example: citrus, apples, black currant, tomatoes, cabbage, pepper.
These fruits love freezing!
Bananas, mango, grapes. That’s right! Bananas are the rich source of potassium. And low temperatures do not affect the amount of this element in food. Banana ice cream? Healthy and tasty! And we love it! And what about mango? So frozen mangoes are a source of two major vitamins and minerals. Vitamins are A and C. And minerals are copper and potassium. In case of grapes – they provide protein, calcium and vitamin C. So it is worth considering to eat them frozen. It can be tasty and refreshing snack.
Freeze for yourself!
If you want to make sure, what is the quality of frozen food that you eat – just buy fruits and veggies in season and freeze them. What is here also important – you shouldn’t keep food in the freezer for ages. Eat it at most in few months. Why? Over many months, even in frozen vegetables, nutrients do inevitably degrade. And how to prepare frozen food? Steam or microwave rather than boil it to minimize the loss of water-soluble vitamins.
So what to choose?
Keeping in mind that our diet should be balanced, we also should take into consideration the fact that we should like what we are eating 😉 It is always good to improve the diet. That’s why when you can use in season fruits and vegetables – just do it. And to enjoy the taste of your favourite fruits and veggies throughout the whole year – use their frozen version.