Why You Shouldn’t Cut Vegetables and Fruits
Since the appearance of the internet, this issue has become one of the most discussed on the culinary and medical forums. Some say that everything depends on the quality of the metal - and modern knives and stainless steel scissors allegedly can’t cause significant damage to the quality of food. Often tips come across not to cut greens and fruit, and to tear and break them - then the cell membrane seems to be preserved and...and what?
Let’s look at the question in full detail. Moreover, in our time many people prefer to buy products already cut:
- In supermarkets: sliced and peeled vegetables and fruits save us a lot of time when preparing lunches and dinners;
- In the delivery of healthy food: it helps to save money and calories because if you need a recipe of one and a half potatoes and half an apple, you will pay for them, not for two potatoes and not per pound;
- In restaurants and coffee shops: you take on the way to work a ready-made salad or diced fruit in plastic cups and can have a snack without detaching yourself from the monitor.
Sliced fruit is slightly more expensive than unwashed and whole - so if time is more expensive than money, then why not?
And Here's Why:
The benefits of antioxidants (especially their anticancer and anti-aging activity) are heard by everyone. Many even know that the main natural antioxidants are vitamins C and E, as well as lycopene...But few people honestly tried to understand how it works.
Oxidation (suddenly someone remembers) is a chain reaction. That is, the substance, interacting with oxygen, undergoes a series of successive transformations, as a result of which free radicals are formed - "fragments" of matter that can’t exist for a long time in a free state and are only looking for something to cling to. In the body, they cling to cells - and either "build" them in some wrong way (this leads to the development of oncology), or destroy (this is in fact, aging.) And who is the main oxidizer? Oxygen. While a person breathes oxygen, it’s impossible to get rid of old age and illnesses. You can only slow them down - with the help of antioxidants, which take on free radicals and don’t allow them to cling to your cells. In the chemical sense, antioxidants are substances that slow the oxidation process.
Now imagine what happens when you cut a fruit or a vegetable. It was cut, not broken. That is, damaged the cell membrane. The interior of the food is in contact with oxygen. And antioxidants ripped out of the damaged cell, begin to interact directly with oxygen immediately. Each side of the cut cube suffices and neutralizes free radicals - from the air, and not from your body …
Of course, if you cut a piece of apple and put it in your mouth, nothing fatal will happen. But if you slice an apple in the morning and take it with you to work and eat in the evening, then you’re eating already "wasted material:" with the fiber, nothing will happen, but you will get 20% less of vitamin C. And if you buy apple slices in McDonald's or a fruit salad at your local coffee shop - what if they cut them yesterday? - you will lose almost one-third of the antioxidants. Studies conducted have shown that you lose antioxidants faster when slicing soft fruits: strawberries, kiwi, tomatoes.
What if You Prepare a Meal in Advance?
It turns out, preparing a meal in advance or buying already sliced fruit, you’re not only paying more money, but also getting fewer benefits. Although, of course, all the same, sliced fruit is better than none. But take note that there are much more vitamins in solid small carrots, stalks of celery and lettuce leaves.
If you don’t plan to eat fresh fruit at once, then the best way to preserve their nutritional and aesthetic value is not to touch it until it’s consumed. Just before eating, wash it thoroughly, cut it with a sharp knife - and eat with pleasure.
It’s very important that the knife is sharp. You can’t cut too much with a dull one, no matter how much you press. That is, there are more damaged cells when they start to leak juice...And this isn’t just liquid, it's electrolytes. Of these, calcium, potassium, and sodium are the most important for us.
Well, now you probably have an obvious answer. Can I cut vegetables, fruits, and greens? Of course, it’s possible! By itself, the knife doesn’t do much harm to them. But the sliced fruit should be eaten immediately. Salad, of course, doesn’t rot in a day or two. But all its healing properties will be lost.