If you are like many shoppers these days, you might be purchasing frozen fruits and vegetables in the freezer aisle of the supermarket. Frozen fruits and veggies last a long time and provide a great convenience. They also allow us to enjoy out of season produce that would otherwise be unavailable. Plus they can be easy on our wallets. Sometimes the frozen vegetables can be easily reheated in the microwave, making them an easy way to consume nutritious foods.
Yes frozen fruits and vegetables are great, but what about their nutrition content? Well it turns out, their nutrition content is not that much different than from their fresh counterparts. In some cases the nutrient content is actually greater! Take this example. A study done at the university of California at Davis found that frozen broccoli had more riboflavin also known as vitamin B2 than fresh broccoli. Another study found that frozen blueberries, frozen corn and frozen green beans had more vitamin C than the fresh ones. Frozen peas were found to contain less riboflavin than fresh peas though.
Overall, the study which compared nutrient levels of eight different fruits and vegetables can be said to have found no significant difference in nutrients between fresh and frozen versions of fruits and vegetables. If there is a difference in nutrient levels, than it is marginal at best. The difference in nutrient levels would have no visible impact on health. While it is true that some nutrients are affected by freezing or freshness, some nutrients such as iron and fiber are not affected at all.
So should you take away from the study conducted at the University of California on nutrient levels in fresh and frozen foods? The real takeaway is that you should consume as much fruits and vegetables as you can. They will be good for you and chock full of nutrients no matter what form you buy them in.
Some word of advice if you do plan to purchase large amounts of frozen fruits and veggies is to purchase produce that has been frozen under a process called individually quick frozen or IQF. This will ensure the highest quality, taste, freshness and nutrition content. Store frozen produce in a deep freezer or at the very back to maintain freshness.