As you pursue the raw fruit diet, you may have trouble always procuring fresh, raw fruits. Whether they are out of season or just out of stock, you may look for alternatives. You will be wondering do canned, dried, and applesauce fruits count as raw, and why? Can you reach for that canned fruit as a substitute? Fresh fruit offers the best flavor and nutritional content when it comes to fruit, but when you can’t get locally grown produce, you still want a good variety of fruits in your diet. Canned, dried, and applesauce fruits can serve as a convenient alternative to fresh fruits.
Canned fruits generally provide similar amounts of vitamins and nutrients compared to their fresh counterparts. The canning process does reduce some of the vitamin C content in many fruits, but the level will stay the same throughout the canned fruit’s shelf life. Peaches and pears are also lower in fiber than fresh fruits because they no longer have their peels. Fruits canned in syrup will have extra sugar and calories that are not good, but you can drain the liquid to reduce the sugar content. Check for canned fruit that is unsweetened and canned in water or its own juices for the best nutritional value.
Dried fruit provides vitamins, minerals, and fiber just like its fresh counterpart. You will find lower amounts of folate and vitamin C than fresh fruit because of the losses during the drying process. Dried fruit also contains more calories per serving than fresh fruit because it has lost most of its water. Keep your serving size of dried fruit lower than you would with its fresh counterparts to ensure you are not taking in extra calories you do not need. The natural sugars in dried fruit will also be more concentrated than in their fresh versions. For the healthiest options, be sure to choose dried fruit that does not include added sugar. Dried fruits can also contain more potassium and fiber than their fresh counterparts. Depending on the fruit, your dried fruit can have over 9% of your daily value of fiber! Dried fruits are also associated with an overall increase in nutrient intake, including higher vitamin A, vitamin K, magnesium, and others. Always be sure to double check what your dried fruit is being preserved with. Dried fruit preserved with sulphite can trigger allergic reactions in some people, especially people with asthma.
Applesauce and applesauce fruit blends can vary greatly in their health benefits. Many commercially prepared applesauces are sweetened and made without the apple peel, which lowers the fiber and antioxidant properties. If you are making homemade applesauce or are vigilant about checking the content of your applesauces, they can be just as healthy as fresh fruit. Applesauce makes for a quick and convenient snack that you can take with you and eat anywhere. The dietary fiber allows your digestive system to continue moving smoothly. The lower calorie counts in applesauce make it an appealing addition to any meal. Applesauce can also make a great food ingredient when cooking. When used as a substitute for butter, margarine, or oil, recipes will have more fiber and fewer calories. Applesauce can also be made with a variety of other fruits like blueberries, strawberries, and peaches to create an applesauce blend that has even more beneficial health properties than standard applesauce.
If you are unable to find any of the above, frozen fruits can be a great alternative. Frozen fruits are picked and frozen at their peak ripeness and maintain a comparable amount of vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals as their fresh versions. Some frozen fruits may even have higher vitamin C content! Not only can frozen fruits be found year-round, but they are great for fighting food waste. Grab some frozen fruit to keep in your freezer for when you run out of the fresh stuff and never go without fruit again.
Whether you choose dried, canned, or applesauce fruits for your substitutions, always make sure you are including a variety of different fruits to get the widest variety of nutritional benefits. When you just can’t get fresh fruits, there are so many ways to get the fruit content you need to stay healthy. From fruit juices to frozen fruits and everything in between, there is really no wrong way to enjoy your favorite fruits.