The general train of thought when it comes to canned foods is that they are somehow less nutritious than their fresh or frozen counterparts. There are many people who believe that canned food is generally bad for your health. However, they don’t really have any scientific data to support this claim.
This begs the question: is canned food good for your health? Well, the idea that it’s bad for your health isn’t entirely true but does find its roots somewhere, and the idea that they might actually be good for your health is probably one that most people don’t even consider. They can be a bit of both, honestly, and that depends on how you consume it.
What Are Canned Foods?
Canning is the process of storing food in an air-tight container. This is achieved by following a three-step process: processing, sealing and heating. The process allows canned foods to have a shelf life of around 5 years longer than fresh foods, which makes canned foods a very attractive product for most consumers. Canned foods usually include fruits, vegetables, soups and meat.
Effects of Canning
Contrary to popular belief, canning actually doesn’t affect the nutrition levels of the proteins, carbohydrates, fat content, amount of minerals and fat-soluble vitamins present in the food. However, the heating process of canning does affect water-soluble vitamins like vitamin C and B.
Canning does increase the anti-oxidant levels of certain food items like tomatoes, which actually make them very healthy to consume. Canning also involves the use of sodium and sugars and other chemical preservatives, which in high doses can cause health problems down the road, such as obesity and diabetes.
The main concern and effect of canned foods are the BPA levels that are present. BPA is a chemical used in food packaging, including canned foods. The chemical, which behaves as a protective barrier against foreign influence, almost always manages to leak into the food itself. BPA consumption in high doses can affect the sex organs, the nervous system and other parts of the body as well and thus, it’s not recommended to have a high intake of the chemical.
Balance Is Important
As discussed, canned food has a lot of positive factors that make it so popular. They are extremely easy and convenient to use and also very readily available. However, this doesn’t mean that an individual should be basing their diet around canned foods solely.
The key here is balance. To avoid potential health risks, it’s always a smart idea to check the labels to confirm what the ingredients are and to avoid undesirable ones. For example, someone with diabetes having canned foods high in sugar content will be doing a lot more harm than good by choosing those canned foods.
On a general note though, canned foods are not as harmful as they’re made out to be and definitely don’t lack as many nutrients as people would like to believe. Having them in moderation while ensuring you check the labels shouldn’t raise any serious health concerns.
Want to try some delicious canned foods in the form of Japanese snacks or Korean ramen? SFMart offers all sorts of canned delicacies from East Asia! Browse through our online store and check out a wide array of options for all your food and cosmetic needs.
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