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health - Is freeze-dried food healthy?

    I've recently heard an opinion (from a sailor that attempted to beat a 122 day, westward route, around the world sailing record) that freeze-dried food is actually very healthy, as it contains less fat that normal meals and helps the metabolism.

    Could you validate this opinion (only in terms of longer, i.e. lasting 30 days or more, tips)? Are there any (possible) health-related negative effects of freeze-dried food one should be aware of?

  •  Answers:

  • Justin C

    Generally there are no known health side effects to eating mostly or only freeze-dried food.

    Freeze-dried food tends to hold more nutrients, and hold them longer, than most other shelf-life extending approaches. Freeze-dried fruits hold nearly the same amount of vitamins and antioxidants as their fresh equivalent. Freeze-dried food also does not need to have preservatives which have debatable negative effects (depending on type and quantity). Additionally, food preserved by freeze-drying stays nutritious for longer than any other approach (much longer than some).

    Many commercial makers of freeze-dried food add a ton of sodium, but that is not part of the freeze-drying process. Some manufacturers are better than others.

    Unfortunately for those concerned about the environment, the process of freeze-drying is much more energy intensive than other preservation methods.

    American Institute for Cancer Research article on antioxidants
    NASA PDF document that describes 98% nutritional equivalent at 20% of the weight