Some people view dried fruits as being not as healthy as fresh fruits. Much of this is attributed to the idea that dried fruits have higher sugar content. Recent studies, however, are showing that dried fruit may be as healthy as fresh fruit. In the UK and the United States, both fresh and dried fruit are viewed, as dietary equals. The World Nut and Dried Fruit Congress would like this standard to be set in place across the entire world.
Dried Fruit Helps in Fighting Heart Disease and Cancer
Dr. Daniel Gallaher of the University of Minnesota wants to dispel the myth that dried fruits should be avoided because of potentially high levels of sugar. He says that dried fruit, like fresh fruit, also has a low glycemic index. The glycemic index measures the effect that carbohydrates have on the glucose levels in our blood. Both dried and fresh fruit release glucose slowly and steadily into the blood stream.
Dr. Williamson of the University of Leeds says, “There is little doubt plant polyphenols protect from heart disease.” He also states that polyphenols found in dried fruits can prevent certain types of cancer.
Dr. Adriana Kaliaro is a researcher at Harokopia University in Athens. She says that their research has found that Greek currants help prevent certain types of cancer. When used in an extract form, they were found useful in stopping and even killing certain cancer cells.
Other Dried Fruit Benefits
Dried fruits are packed with a large amount of nutrients. One of the advantages of eating dried fruits is that a person can eat smaller portions than they would normally eat with fresh fruits. By eating fewer portions, they get the same amount of nutritional content.
The nutritional content of fresh fruits is often dependent on several factors. Optimally nutritious fresh fruit should be in season. Fresh fruit also runs into the problem of storage and isn’t completely fresh if one considers that they may be transported from another country. Dried fruit is good the whole year and can be easily stored in a cupboard or pantry. They are also very easy to add into other foods like cereals and can be eaten as snacks.
Freeze Dried Fruit
The other commonly found dried fruit is the kind found in cereals. Rather than simply drying the fruits, they are put into a machine that freezes them at temperatures between -50 C and -80 C. People sometimes wonder, are freeze dried fruits nutritious?
Studies indicate that antioxidants found in fresh fruits can be found at similar levels within freeze dried fruit. The American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) says that these antioxidants found within freeze dried fruit can also be helpful in fighting colon and esophagus cancer.
The AICR says that eating freeze dried fruit only, however, doesn’t provide all the nutritional content that a person needs on a daily basis. Since it is often found in cereal, freeze dried fruit can be mixed with yoghurt or other dried fruits. This creates a more balanced meal.
Studies on Dried Fruit Being Healthy: Preventing Cancer
Studies on Dried Fruit Being Healthy: Healthy as Fresh Fruits
Studies on Dried Fruit Being Healthy: Freeze Dried Fruits
Freeze Dried Fruits: The Process