The Nutritional Benefits of Local, In Season Produce vs Frozen or Imported Produce

 
 
 
 

The Nutritional Benefits of Local, In Season Produce vs Frozen or Imported Produce

The Nutritional benefits of local, in season produce vs frozen or imported produce may not be as different as you’d expect. In fact, both frozen and fresh produce have their pros and cons.

Fresh, in season produce is the best option because it offers a great quantity and variety of nutrients. But how much of a difference does fresh produce make? To start, there are similarities between fresh and frozen produce. Carbohydrate, protein, fiber, and mineral content don’t differ all that much between the two. But vitamins and beneficial plant-derived chemicals, or phytonutrients, may be lost when produce site on a shelf or in the fridge for too long. If you want to get the most nutrients and vitamins out of your produce, then shopping for locally harvested fruits and vegetables is the way to go.

The good news is that frozen fruits and vegetables still have good nutritional value, and it may come down to price or convenience when deciding where to buy from. More good news! You need a relatively small amount of nutrients each day, so you’re likely to get the nutrients you need whether you buy fresh or frozen produce.

What’s the Difference?

According to a study by the University of California-Davis, this is what they found:

The carbohydrate, fiber, mineral, and protein content are all similar with fresh and frozen produce. Fresh produce can lose half its vitamins and phytonutrients during storage or cooking.

Water-soluble vitamins like vitamin C are lost much more often when freezing produce compared to fat-soluble vitamins like A and E.

Frozen produce may even have more nutrients and vitamins than days-old fresh items, but the longer the storage the more vitamins and nutrients are lost.

Looks Can Be Deceiving

Produce at the supermarket may look fresh, but there’s more than just looks if you want to get the most out of your produce. For example, B and C vitamins are overly sensitive to heat, light, and exposure to oxygen. Carrots can lose almost 80% of their vitamin C within a week of being stored in the fridge.

What Should You Eat?

Making your choices of what to eat can come down to a variety of factors. Price, quality, taste, and health are some of the most popular factors for people when deciding what to buy. Now you know that you don’t have to stress over produce. Is fresh, in season produce the healthiest way to go? Absolutely. Can you still buy frozen produce and get enough nutrients? Also yes! Now you just have more information for making your decision.

At SoLé SoupS, we have you covered. Our fresh soups always give you the most nutrients possible and our flavor can’t be beat either. Check out our menu online, where you can also order online using Postmates!

 

SOURCE: health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy

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