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You must be gloating with pride, after chopping your favourite fruits and packing them in your lunch box. But has anyone told you that vegetables and fruits lose their nutrition when they are cut? We know you find chopped fruits and veggies much easier to nosh on. Sadly, they will only harm your health!
Today, we are going to reveal how eating cut fruits and vegetables is a really bad idea. And to help us understand this, we have dietician, Ms Priya Palan from Zen multispecialty Hospital, Mumbai. Let’s read her take on this.
Light, heat and water are three factors that lead to nutrient loss in fruits. Vitamin C is easily lost on cutting and exposing the fruit to air for a long time. Fruits like apples and bananas develop a brown colour on the surface, due to the action of enzymes, which is known as enzymatic browning.
“Cutting also raises the respiration rate, which results in breaking down of sugars to release carbon dioxide. This results in faster spoilage, as well as changes the taste and texture of fruits. However, new research has found that cut fruits have more visual spoilage, before any significant nutrient loss,” explains Ms Palan.
So, the thing is that you should eat chopped fruits and veggies, but ASAP.
Food-borne illnesses are most common, primarily caused due to the contamination of fruits. Fruits may be contaminated due to unsafe handling practices, contaminated water in which it is grown and exposure to flies or organisms. Salmonella infection is one of the most common infections caused by the consumption of contaminated food, thereby leading to abdominal cramps, fever, body aches, nausea, vomiting , diarrhea, and loss of appetite.
Freshness of cut fruits varies on the kind of fruit you consume. Humidity and temperature play an important role here, so fruits can stay fresh when refrigerated, within a short period of time. Some fruits like apples and pears can be cold-stored for a long period to decrease the spoilage.
“The colour of the fruit is important for its acceptance, hence storage at an optimal cold temperature is most important,” concludes Ms Palan.