Canned, frozen and dried fruit can be a good alternative in the winter. All provide good nutrition similar to fresh fruits. Canned fruit can contain some nutrients that are more easily absorbed by the body. Dried fruit is an easy portable snack.
Tips for buying canned, frozen and dried fruits:
- Look for ‘packed in its own juice’ or ‘packed in fruit juice,’ or ‘unsweetened.’ If these are unavailable then choose ‘packed in light syrup.’
- Use canned fruits immediately after opening to retain flavor and nutrients. If not used immediately place in an airtight container and refrigerate or freeze.
- Buy unsweetened. Check the label under ingredients to see if any sweetener is added.
- Once unfrozen use quickly or refrigerate leftovers.
- Buy plain. Check the label to see if sweeteners or other ingredients are added.
- Keep your portions small as they are usually higher in calories. A ¼ cup of dried raisins contains as many calories as ½ cup of fresh fruit. Dried fruit contains lots of fiber, vitamins A and C, potassium and folate.
- Add to salads, trail mix, pancakes, bread recipes, or a bowl of cereal.
- Read labels as some dried fruit is preserved with sulfite, which can cause allergic reactions.
Try this Spinach Salad recipe which has some dried fruit and fresh apple.
1 bag of fresh Spinach, rinsed
1 green apple sliced thin
1 red apple sliced thin
1/2- cup dried cranberries
½ cup chopped pecans
Arrange pecans on a baking sheet. Toast in 375⁰F oven for 5 minutes or until nuts begin to brown. Cool. Toss together spinach, apples, cranberries, and nuts. Add your favorite dressing. Enjoy.
American Dietetic Association Website http://eatright.org
Foster, J. & Zies, S. . Fruits and Vegetables Are a Convenience for Busy People, available at http://ohioline.osu.edu/hyg-fact/5000/5302.html