Vitamin Retention in Fresh vs. Frozen Produce

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), only 1 in 10 adults consume enough fruits and vegetables (CDC Newsroom, 2017). One factor that may contribute to inadequate produce consumption is lack of time. To address this barrier, have a freezer full of frozen produce available at all times.

It’s true that fresh produce typically contains higher nutrient levels at the time of harvest than frozen. However, many nutrients start to diminish after produce is picked, packed and shipped out for purchase. Thus, some fresh fruits and vegetables may actually have lower levels of nutrients than their frozen counterparts.

Unless you are buying fresh, local and in season the nutrient content of fresh and frozen produce is likely similar. In some cases, frozen produce may even have a higher concentration of nutrient levels. Especially if you are buying fresh produce out of season and state, and storing it for long periods of time in the refrigerator.

The next time you take a walk down your local grocery’s freezer aisle, consider stocking up on frozen fruits and vegetables. Having these convenient, easy to prepare items on hand  may help minimize meal preparation time and improve fruit and vegetable intake in your home. Here are a few suggestions that are nutritionally comparable to their fresh rivals.

  • Green Peas
  • Broccoli
  • Raspberries
  • Spinach
  • Carrots
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Corn
  • Blueberries
  • Blackberries
  • Strawberries

Sources:

Bouzari, A., Holstege, D., & Barrett, D. M. (2015, January 28). Vitamin retention in eight fruits and vegetables: A comparison of refrigerated and frozen storage. Retrieved October 12, 2018, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25526594

CDC Newsroom. (2017, November 16). Retrieved October 10, 2018, from https://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2017/p1116-fruit-vegetable-consumption.html

J. (2018, March 02). 15 Foods You Should Buy Frozen Instead of Fresh. Retrieved October 12, 2018, from https://www.cheatsheet.com/culture/foods-you-should-buy-frozen-instead-fresh.html/