Nutritional comparison of fresh, frozen, and canned fruits and vegetables II. Vitamin A and carotenoids, vitamin E, minerals and fiber



In this second part of our review, we examine the literature for changes in carotenoids, vitamin E, minerals, and fiber due to processing, storage, and cooking of fresh, frozen, and canned fruits and vegetables. While inconsistencies in methodology and reporting methods complicate interpretation of the data, the results show that these nutrients are generally similar in comparable fresh and processed products. The higher levels of carotenoids typically found in canned as compared to fresh products may be attributed to either reporting results on a wet rather than dry weight basis, greater extractability, or differences in cultivars. There are relatively few studies on processing, storage, and cooking effects on vitamin E in fruits and vegetables. Further research is needed to understand nutritional changes in those few fruits and vegetables rich in vitamin E, such as tomatoes. Minerals and fiber are generally stable to processing, storage, and cooking, but may be lost in peeling and other removal steps during processing. Mineral uptake (e.g., calcium) or addition (e.g., sodium) during processing can change the natural mineral composition of a product. Sodium concerns in canned food can be addressed by choosing products with no salt added. Since nutrient content varies considerably by commodity, cultivar, and postharvest treatments, inclusion of a wide variety of fruits and vegetables in the diet is encouraged. Copyright © 2007 Society of Chemical Industry