As winter approaches, fresh produce becomes either more expensive or hard to come by in certain parts of the country. To get the maximum amount of nutrients in your favorite veggies, do you turn to the canned or frozen alternatives?
The benefits of eating fresh produce are many. You can grow it right in your backyard and have it easily available, and when it’s in season, it has the highest nutritional value. However, the produce in the grocery stores often have less nutrients because they are picked before they are ripe, thus not giving them the chance to fully develop. On the other hand, when vegetables are out of season they not only become more expensive they lose a lot of their nutritional value by being exposed to the high heat and sunlight when shipped across the country. So when the produce isle doesn’t impress you, where do you go?
Canned vegetables are often a pretty good alternative to their fresh counterparts. Unlike fresh produce, canned vegetables are picked when they are at their peak ripeness and canned while they have the highest amount of nutrients. Canned vegetables have a substantially higher shelf life than fresh and do not contain any preservatives. However, vegetables tend to lose a few nutrients, like Vitamin C and Vitamin B, when exposed to high heat during the canning process, and they are often high in sodium. So, where does one turn to avoid the high sodium levels of canned vegetables?
Frozen vegetables are picked at the peak of ripeness, and the faster they are frozen after being picked, the more nutrients they retain. Like canned, frozen vegetables can last much longer than fresh produce but unlike canned, it is lower in sodium. The best of both worlds!
To ensure your veggies are packed with all the yummy nutrients you are entitled to, buy fresh produce when it’s in season, and buy frozen when it’s out of season. There’s also the option of dried vegetables such as, Vibrant Health which is a unique combination of the best green foods that can grow from organic soil. Regardless, adding more vegetables to your diet will provide you with more nutrients over all for optimum health.