Canned Fruits and Vegetables Are Nutrition Rich
Fresh peaches, ripe from the tree and eaten almost immediately are delicious and nutritious. But, fresh peaches, picked from the tree, shipped hundreds of miles and eaten weeks later are delicious but not always so nutritious. That doesn’t mean you can’t get a nutritious peach when peaches aren’t in season. Grab your can opener and open a can of peaches. You’re likely to get similar nutrition in the canned peaches as you are the peaches eaten hours after picking. That’s because canned peaches are canned at their peak, shortly after they’ve been picked and retain most of their nutrition.
And It’s not only peaches that can be more nutritious in the can. Most produce lose many of their vitamins and minerals after several days of being exposed to the air. WebMD reports that “vegetables such as green beans and spinach lose about 75% of their vitamin C after being stored in the refrigerator for a week.” The canned versions of spinach, green beans, and other produce may be more nutritious than their fresh counterparts that have been on the store shelf or in the refrigerator for days or weeks.
Canning can actually increase the nutritional benefits of some vegetables. Due to the canning process, canned tomatoes, corn, and carrots can have higher amounts of some antioxidant phytochemicals than fresh tomatoes, corn, and carrots.
One thing to be cautious about when choosing canned fruits and vegetables is the added salt and sugar. If sodium is a concern, buy sodium-free canned vegetables or rinse canned vegetables with water to help reduce the sodium content. If sugar is a concern, look for canned fruit with no added sugar or those that are packed in concentrated fruit juice instead of light or heavy syrup.
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