What’s healthier: fresh, frozen or canned foods?

Fresh food, particularly when eaten in season is great, but frozen and canned foods are good alternatives – equally nutritious, and really convenient, with long shelf lives if stored correctly.

Remember to keep an eye out for the salt and sugar in canned items by checking the food label. Choose canned vegetables without added salt and canned fruits in natural juice rather than syrup.

How you cook fruit and vegetables can affect their nutrient content.  Boiling fruit and veggies of any type (fresh, frozen, or canned) in large amounts of water for a long time can lose a lot of their nutrients as they are leached into the water. But vegetables and fruits that are lightly steamed will retain much more of their nutrients.

New research shows that the beta carotene (the precursor to Vitamin A) is obtained more easily by the body from carrots if they are stir-fried in a oil (like olive oil). After all, Vitamin A is a fat soluble vitamin so cooking in an oil makes sense.

For more information on healthy cooking methods contact an Accredited Practising Dietitian(APD). They’re nutrition professionals that can advice on the best types of foods to include in your healthy eating plan.