Cutting fruits and vegetables in prolonged exposure to water, heat, and light may cause some foods to lose nutritional values like vitamin-c, vitamin B1, and polyphenols. It’s a big problem while cooking vegetables, rich in water-soluble or heat-sensitive vitamins and minerals. Here are some ways which will help you to retain nutrients while preparing your foods.
1. Washing fruits and vegetables
Washing fruits and vegetables are the always first rule for preparing a meal. Still, they don’t allow prolonged exposure in water because this takes away some essential nutrients also.
o Chopping first and then washing vegetables can take away vital nutrients from the food. Try to wash your vegetables first, then chop. It will preserve some nutrients.
2. Use fresh foods quickly
Buying fresh produce, dairy, meat, and using these ingredients to minimize the nutrients loss in storage occurs as quickly as possible.
3. Rinse instead of Soaking
If bacteria, dirt, pests, and pesticides thoroughly wash away under cold, running water. Do not soak the vegetables. If you soak the vegetables or fruits in water for an extended period, almost 40% of soluble vitamins like vitamin-c and minerals are lost.
o If you have to soak them, use the remaining water as vegetable stock, or knead the dough to regain the nutrition.
4. Avoid boiling your food
Water-soluble nutrients will leech out of vegetables into the cooking water. Try to avoid boiling vegetables to minimize nutrient loss.
o Root vegetables like potato and carrot should be boiled with skin on and then peeled after boiling as it will help the nutrients to migrate to the center of vegetables and help in their retention.
5. Don’t chop small pieces of vegetables
Avoid cutting vegetables in small pieces. You Should chop the vegetables in large chunks to avoid nutrients getting destroyed when coming in contact with air.
7. Keep the Skin
Avoid peeling your vegetables. Removing the skins can cause you to either peel away this nutrient-dense layer or expose them to layer and water that can dissolve those nutrients away. In many cases, more nutrients are present just beneath the skin.
8. Microwave Vegetables
Considering microwaving vegetables is the best way to prevent nutrient loss with minimum heat and minimum liquid and cook quickly.
o Microwave can be best to retain vitamins D nutrients in vegetables, as they consider a small amount of water, while some water will steam the vegetables and microwave them.
9. Don’t Heat again
Reheating food destroys the chemical structure of nutrients and vitamins. Cooked vegetables are reheat for being kept in the refrigerator lose more than half of their vitamin-c. Reheat only when necessary, only warm up the amount of food you eat in one sitting instead of reheating the entire batch multiple times.
10. Stir-fry Vegetables and Meat
You can retain an adequate amount of nutrients by stir-frying your food in a little amount of oil because water-soluble vitamins won’t leech into the oil as they leech into the water.
o Choose heart-healthy oils like canola and olive oil. Also, use a little amount of oil.
o Stir-frying lean meats, cut the meat into pieces and coat it in whole wheat flour, which protects the meat(protein) from the heat and moisture to prevent nutritional value loss.
o Don’t allow for deep frying and heating at a high temperature for a long time; it can hard and solidify it. Thus, overlooking results in the loss of precious nutrients.
11. Baking Meat and Fish, but not Vegetables
Baking meat, poultry, and fish are great to preserve the proteins and other nutrients. You might also consider fish to wrap in tinfoil.
o Baking is not suitable for vegetables since the prolonged exposure to high heat can increase nutrient loss.
to know more about cooking a healthy meal in a busy schedule, click here…