Fresh or Frozen vegetables/fruits ?
There is no doubt that the fresh vegetables and fruits are rich when it comes to nutrition as well as flavor level. But in my opinion, fresh vegetables doesn't mean the one which we buy from supermarket, but the one which we pick at their peak of ripeness. The vegetables and fruits which we pick from our own garden or from the farmer's market the day they have been harvested are truly hard to beat.
According to the research reported in Daily Telegraph, about 40% of important nutrients are lost in fresh vegatables by the time they are consumed. They also found following percent of nutrient loss in different vegetables:-
- About 45 percent loss in green beans
- 25 percent loss in broccoli and cauliflower
- 15 percent loss in garden peas
- 10 percent loss in carrots
According to the scientist from the Food research, the produce will retain more nutrients , if they are frozen immediately after being picked.
Produce which are to shipped to any grocery stores are normally picked before their peak of ripeness, which doesn't allow it to reach their full nutrient level, then they are shipped to its destined supermarket warehouse, then to supermarket back room , the produce aisle and then to our refrigerator. Until this time many of the heat and light sensitive nutrients like vitamin C ,thiamin are leached out. In many cases, these so called fresh vegatables have spent more than a week before they reach our cart.
Frozen vegatables are picked when they reach their peak of ripeness and then are blanched or steamed to kill food degrading bacteria, and then are flash frozen to seal in all the mineral and vitamins. Though, the blanching process can strip off some of its delicate nutrients .
So, to get maximum benefits from vegetables and fruits, either buy fruits and vegetables from farmer's market or buy seasonal produce from supermarket when they are fresh and ripe and consume with in 3-4 days or less than week or buy frozen vegetables marked with USDA sheild. Always read the labels to find out ,if any chemicals or salt is been added to it.