Nutrition Myth 9: Fresh is Superior to Frozen

nutrition myth 9.png

For whatever reason, we have been led to believe that fresh food is far better for us than frozen food. Part of this is down to marketing; eating ‘fresh’ sounds better and more appealing than something ‘frozen’.

As a result, we are now led to believe that fresh food is nutritionally superior to frozen food. It is suggested that a lot of the nutritional value of foods is lost when they are frozen - we can tell you now that this idea is very inaccurate.

In fact, a 2015 study, Bouzari et Al.(1), showed that some frozen produce actually retains a higher amount of certain micronutrients than its fresh equivalent. This is not true of all vitamins and minerals in all produce, but it does show that fresh is not inherently more nutritious than frozen foods.

This, makes logical sense when we consider that most foods that are frozen go through almost no other processing. Most foods are frozen directly from harvesting, while some produce is blanched before freezing to simply prevent a change of colour / appearance. By what mechanism could a significant amount of nutritional value be lost?

Overall, the differences in nutritional value of fresh and frozen foods is so minimal to be insignificant, so should not be factored into our dietary considerations. Coupled with the fact that frozen food is often significantly cheaper, we must come to the conclusion that the choice between fresh and frozen should simply be a case of personal preference. If you prefer to eat all fresh foods - that’s fine, but no-one should feel obliged to buy fresh when frozen food is simply not inferior.

(1) Bouzari et al. 2015; Vitamin retention in eight fruits and vegetables: a comparison of refrigerated and frozen storage.