A new study finds fresh vegetables can boost your health, particularly if they’re packed with fibre.
The study was published in the latest issue of the Journal of the American Dietetic Association.
Researchers from the University of Washington found that the fresh vegetables were more nutritious than the processed foods, which are often made from flour, corn or other grain products.
Dr. Peter Risley, the study’s lead author, said fresh vegetables are high in vitamin C, potassium, fibre and antioxidants.
“These are all things that are needed in the body, and those things contribute to a healthy, robust immune system,” he said.
Dr Riske said fresh, whole vegetables have a higher vitamin content than processed ones, because they’re grown in a cooler environment.
“When you eat fresh, they have the potential to increase your intake of these nutrients, and when you eat processed foods they are typically packed with preservatives and trans fats,” he added.
The researchers also found that fresh vegetables contain a higher number of antioxidants than processed foods.
They also found a higher amount of vitamins A and C in fresh and processed vegetables, and higher amounts of folic acid, B vitamins and thiamin.
Dr C. Robert Bell, who studies the health effects of eating a healthy diet at the University at Buffalo, said the results are a promising finding.
“This study shows that fresh veggies and whole foods have the capacity to provide significant health benefits,” he told ABC News.
Dr Bell also said that there are benefits to eating fresh vegetables in moderation, such as if you are a vegetarian or a vegan.
“They may be good for you to have a little bit of variety, but if you’re really eating a whole plant-based diet, it may not be a bad idea to eat more of them,” he explained.
ABC News’ Ben Nelms and the Associated Press contributed to this report.