LIFESTYLE
09/10/2013 07:51 BST

Frozen Food Is Better For Health Than Fresh Fruit And Vegetables

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Over the past few years it's been drilled into man, woman and child that five-a-day (not merely just an apple) keeps the doctor away.

But when it comes to frozen packets fruit and veg many turn their noses up, adamant that fresh produce is the healthier option.

As it turns out, food from the freezer typically contains higher nutrients than those located in the veg aisle.

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Drawing on two independent studies, the MailOnline says that frozen fruit and veg contains more antioxidant-type compounds such as Vitamin C, polyphenols, anthocyanins, lutein and beta-carotene. The findings, one from Leatherhead Food Research and another from the University of Chester, say nutrients are linked to cancer prevention and are good for various parts of the body.

Researchers conducted 40 tests to compare nutrient levels of produce left in a fridge for three days and the frozen equivalent.

Speaking to Health India, nutritionist Shilpa Mittal says that freezing foods locks in nutrients until consumed, whereas fresh foods can lose goodness in the fridge.

"Peas, green beans lose a lot of vitamin C within hours of being picked."

She adds: "When foods are canned or frozen, they are usually processed and packaged within hours of being harvested. This retains their nutrients until they are defrosted which should be just prior their consumption."

Brian Young director-general of the British Frozen Food Federation said in a statement: "Fast and organised methods of harvest-to-freeze have evolved which minimise loss of nutrients. In contrast, 'fresh' food can spend up to a month in the chain of producers, wholesalers and retailers before they reach customers."

"During this time we know that product deterioration takes place - to the extent that they can have lower nutritional value than frozen equivalents."

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