Frozen foods have a certain reputation of being unhealthy, and as you walk down the freezer aisle of your grocery store, it’s not hard to understand why. You’ll likely see row after row of pre-packaged, processed, and chemically-preserved foods in brightly colored containers to catch your eye. But what may come as a surprise to many people is that some frozen foods are actually healthier and more packed with nutrients than their fresh counterparts.
Nutrient Loss After Harvest
As soon as produce is harvested, it begins to lose some of its nutrient density. This is unfortunate because the only way that we can reap the benefits of Mother Nature’s fruits and vegetables is to pick them from their sources. When you pick up produce in the grocery store, it’s very likely that it’s been sitting there for a few days and that it was actually picked several days or weeks earlier.
A study conducted at UC Davis suggested that many types of frozen vegetables and fruits have a higher nutritional value than their fresh versions. The study showed that by freezing foods, they retained higher levels of vitamin E, calcium, magnesium, zinc, copper, and iron. Another study conducted at Leatherhead Food Research and the University of Chester suggested that frozen fruit and vegetables are greater in beta-carotene, vitamin C, polyphenols, and anthocyanins.
The Process of Freeze Drying
One of the best ways to retain nutrients in fruits and vegetables is freeze-drying them with a special process. And freeze-drying works well with other types of food too, such as marine products and seaweed. Seagate products are freeze-dried and cryogenically ground into a fine powder in our very own plant. What we love about freeze-frying is that the entire product is used in this process, and nothing is discarded. This method captures all the delicate nutrients and natural taste in a highly concentrated powder.
Take our seaweed powder, for a quick example. First, Seagate divers deliver the fresh seaweed directly to the factory on the day that it is harvested. Then we wash the seaweed in freshwater, removing most of the residual seawater salt. The remaining sea salt provides a rich marine taste and mineral content. We freeze-dry seaweed in modern stainless steel tanks to capture all of its valuable nutrients.
At Seagate, we offer many whole foods in freeze-dried form that retain their maximum nutrient value and deliver convenient nutrition to your doorstep. The design and installation of our freeze-dryers, concentrators, pulverizers, and other vacuum equipment that were necessary in order to process the shark cartilage byproduct from our original fishing operations have also provided the capability to process, dry, and grind most other raw materials. Our freeze-dried powders required that we operate our own organic farm in order to produce products that are 100% free of chemicals and pesticides.
Today, we offer several healthy supplements in powder form, including carrot powder, lemon powder, seaweed powder, and shark cartilage powder. It’s best to store powders in their tightly sealed containers in a cool dry place, away from direct heat or sunlight, and without refrigeration.
Fresh vs. Frozen Experience
So while nothing beats the experience of browsing your local farmer’s market on a Saturday morning, don’t rule frozen and freeze-dried foods out either. While fresh foods tend to spoil quickly, frozen and freeze-dried ones are better suited for long-term storage, emergencies, travel, and buying in bulk. Try incorporating a mixture of the two types of foods into your daily diet for the best overall health benefits, convenience, and dining experience!