February celebrates Nationwide Canned Meals Month, selling the usage of canned protein, greens, fruits, and different meals. Canned meals are cheap and handy additions to meals and snack. Canning lengthens a meals’ shelf life and reduces meals waste. Nonetheless, there are various myths round canned meals. Let’s sort out a couple of!
Delusion: Canned meals don’t have vitamins.
Truth: Canning is a strategy of heating meals and liquids inside cans or jars so these meals may be shelf secure. Canning doesn’t change the quantity of protein, fats, carbohydrates, or fiber in meals. Minerals, like potassium or calcium, are heat-tolerant and don’t change. Some water-soluble nutritional vitamins, equivalent to Vitamin C, can break down throughout canning, however this could additionally occur when cooking contemporary produce too. Curiously, some analysis exhibits canning can hold the remaining nutritional vitamins within the cans secure for a very long time. All of this implies canned meals have related vitamin profiles to contemporary.
Delusion: Throw out cans which can be previous their “use-by” or “sell-by” dates.
Truth: Meals dates are based mostly on high quality. Up till the date on the can, these meals are at peak style, shade, and texture. After that date, the meals might begin to lose high quality, however they’re nonetheless fit for human consumption, offered the cans should not rusting, bulging, or have off smells when opened. In actual fact, the USDA suggests commercially canned fruits may be saved for 12-18 months and low-acid meals, equivalent to meat or greens, may be saved for 2-5 years. It’s a good suggestion to examine your pantry often, however there’s not all the time a have to throw away canned meals as quickly as their meals date passes.
Delusion: Canned meals are just for when cash is tight.
Truth: Canned meals are cheap and useful when staying inside a funds. However that isn’t the one cause to purchase canned. Up first, canned meals present comfort. Open that may of inexperienced beans for a facet dish prepared in minutes. Second, canned meals present good high quality when contemporary is out of season. For instance, native grocery shops should still promote contemporary peaches in winter. But it surely simply doesn’t have the flavour of a summer season peach. Shopping for canned peaches as a substitute offers a lot better taste and textures by comparability.
Delusion: Canned meals have a number of preservatives.
Truth: Canning itself is a preserving course of, that means meals last more than if left unpreserved. The warmth produced throughout canning breaks down enzymes that will in any other case trigger meals to decompose, thus serving to meals keep good high quality as soon as canned. The warmth additionally pushes air out of the cans to create a vacuum which prevents oxygen from turning meals off colours. Typically, canned meals are simply meals and water. Salt could also be added, however it not required.
Learn ingredient lists on labels to see what’s in your most well-liked canned meals.
For upcoming well being and wellness lessons or free data from Illinois Extension, discover us on-line at go.illinois.edu/dmp.
Caitlin Mellendorf is a vitamin and wellness educator for the College of Illinois Extension, serving DeWitt, Macon and Piatt Counties.