by Lisa Samuel, Co-op News contributor
Lisa Samuel, Registered Dietitian and Nutritionist
Dear Nutritionist, I’ve heard that some fruits are more nutritious than others. Is this true? And if so, how can I choose the most nutritious fruits?
Dear Member, It’s a great question! Different fruits provide different
For example, some are higher in fiber, or some have greater amounts of antioxidants. Have you ever heard the term “eat the rainbow”?
The bottom line is that the more colorful the fruits in your diet are—the better!
However, there are differences in the nutritional value of certain fruits, and how you store and serve them can also affect their nutritional value. Here are a few general guidelines to getting the biggest bang for your nutrition buck, when it comes to fruits.
Fruits vary widely in their nutritional value. For example, different apples have different amounts of antioxidants. Try to choose the most colorful fruit on display.
Select ripe fruit for the highest nutritional value. Fruits picked before they are ripe will never develop the same nutritional value as naturally ripened fruits. Also, fruit loses nutritional value as it ages. The sooner you eat it after it has been picked, the more nutrition.
Eat the skin! For most fruits with an edible skin, much of the fiber and nutritional value is contained in the skin.
Blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries are among the most nutritious foods you can eat! They are rich in vitamin C and anthocyanins (beneficial phytochemicals), and are high in fiber.
Frozen berries are almost as nutritious as fresh berries, if they are flash frozen. Thawing them destroys many of their nutrients unless they are thawed very quickly. Thawing berries in the microwave is the fastest method. Eat them right away after thawing, or eat them frozen as a refreshing treat!
Dried fruits are also nutritious and are good sources of fiber. Try to choose those dried without added sugar.