Fresh veggies? Bah!

I’m currently re-reading MINDLESS EATING. It’s a compelling and eye-opening book about how our eating decisions are often impacted by unconscious and seemingly innocuous factors. Last week I learned an interesting fact about fruits and vegetables that was repeated on NPR this morning: In general, frozen vegetables are considerably better for you than fresh vegetables.

As soon as a fruit or vegetable is plucked from the ground, off the vine, or off the tree, it begins to degrade in terms of its vitamin and mineral content. This degradation will continue at an accelerating rate until the fruit or vegetable is cooked or eaten. Therefore, the fresh fruits and vegetables that you purchase in your average grocery store have lost a considerable number of vitamins and nutrients.

However, frozen fruits and vegetables are almost always flash frozen within hours after being picked, sealing in their vitamins and nutrients until they are thawed. As a result, they typically contain more than twice the vitamins than their fresh counterparts.

So curse you, you vitamin-deficient fresh vegetables! I’ll stick to the frozen food section, where my vegetables are more vitamin-packed and (as an added bonus) can double as an ice pack when I burn my hand or bump my head.

Of course, I'll probably be buying ice cream instead of frozen peas, but still...