Are Canned Peaches Just as Nutritious as Fresh?



A new study published in the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture1 found that not only do canned peaches have similar levels of nutrients as fresh, in some cases they may actually have more

How could this be? In some cases the canning process may make nutrients more readily available to your body (such as in the case with the lycopene in tomatoes, which increases when they are cooked).

In a comparison of canned peaches versus fresh, the canned were found to have significantly higher levels of vitamin C, folate and antioxidants, higher but not statistically different levels of vitamin A, and lower, but not statistically different, levels of vitamin E, total phenolics and total carotenoids. The researchers concluded:2

The nutritional content of canned peaches has been shown in this study to be comparable to that of fresh peaches. There were no statistically significant decreases in those nutritional parameters measured in this study between fresh freestone peaches and canned cling peaches. 

Vitamins A and E along with total carotenoids decrease immediately upon processing, but appear to stabilize after the processing step, showing minimal additional changes upon storage for 3 months. 

This study shows that canned peaches can provide comparable nutrient levels to the consumer as fresh peaches, meaning that consumers can enjoy peaches year round without worrying about loss of nutrients in their diet.”

A 2007 study similarly found comparable levels of vitamin A, vitamin E, minerals, vitamins and carotenoids in canned foods and their fresh counterparts.3 For those without access or the resources to buy fresh produce, this makes it sound as though canned is a perfect alternative, and perhaps it would be if not for several other factors that were not taken into account in this research…