Does Blending Destroy Nutrients?

Blending destroys nutrients. You’ve probably met someone who makes claims like these. Maybe you’re even that someone, always making sure to remind friends and family about this “fact” every time you see them partaking in a cup of fruit juice instead of enjoying the fruit raw and unprocessed.

But how true is this claim and the many others like it? This article will be exploring this question and provide answers backed by scientific studies to each of the questions explored.

Does Blending Destroy Nutrients in Fruits and Vegetables?

To keep it simple and straightforward, yes, blending destroys nutrients. Be it in fruits, vegetables, or any other food item, nutrients are always lost as you blend. Before you put down your freshly prepared glass of smoothie and vow never to take another though, let’s explain what this really means.

According to research carried out by the University of Califonia, Davis, food items generally start losing nutrients from the moment they are harvested. The longer they spend before they are consumed, the more nutrients they lose. Along with this, additional nutrients are lost during processing. And when we say processing here, we include everything from peeling the fruits to cooking or any other form of preparation, including but not limited to blending.

So technically, yes, blending does destroy nutrients in fruits and vegetables, but avoiding such loss of nutrients is practically impossible.

How Much Nutrient is Lost During Blending?

When most people say blending destroys nutrients, however, they are not concerned about the little quantity of nutrients food items naturally lose after harvesting. What they mean is that blended fruits and vegetables lose a significant amount of nutrients when they get processed in a blender. If this is what you mean when you ask the question does blending destroy nutrients, the answer is no!

The amount of nutrient lost when blending fruits and vegetables is so little, it could even be considered negligible. According to Kitchen Guides, blended fruit and vegetables still contain most of their nutrient, so much so that there is almost no difference between drinking blended fruits and eating the whole fruit itself.

What Kind of Nutrient is Lost During Blending?

Fruits and vegetables contain several types of nutrients. These include fibers, proteins, carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals. Some of these lose some of their content when you blend fruits, while others remain unaffected. To understand this, however, we need to first discuss how these nutrients are lost in the first place.

Nutrients are lost from food items in sevevral ways, but the most important one here is a process called oxidation. This is the reaction that occurs when food items get exposed to air. It is what you observe when you cut a piece of apple and it starts to brown. This is also the major process through which nutrient is lost when blending since blending increases oxidation in food items.

Nutrients lost during where this process when you blend include nutrients with antioxidant properties, i.e nutrients that go through oxidation. These include Vitamin C, most carbs, and proteins. But since oxidation is a slow process though, the nutrient lost is practically negligible, especially since blending takes only a few minutes at most.

There is also the fact that, not every nutrient in fruits and vegetables are antioxidants i.e not every nutrient can be oxidised. So not only is the amount of nutrient lost while blending insignificant, some nutrient do not even experience any depletion at all. Some of these nutrients unaffected by blending include most fibers and many Vitamin Bs.

Why Choose to Blend at All?

Now you might be wondering, since blending really does reduce the amount of nutrient in fruits and vegetables, no matter how small the amount, why bother blending at all? Why not just eat the fruits instead of drinking them? Well, here are a few reasons.

First is the fact that blended fruits and vegetables tend to be easier to consume, especially in large quantities. For example, according to Havard Health Publishing, the most effective fruit and vegetable serving for the average person is two servings of fruits and three servings of vegetables per day. To most people this is quite the ask. Combine those five servings into a cup or two of smoothies or juice though, and most people find it a lot easier to consume.

There there is also the convenience. Having to slug around two oranges and a few bananas is much more inconvenience than simply blending them into a smoothie and placing them into your blender bottle.

Does How You Blend Affect Nutrient Loss?

So we’ve explained that while blending does lead to some nutrient loss in fruits and vegetables, the nutrient lost is quite negligible. We’ve also explained why you blending your fruits and veggies is still a great idea, despite the fact, there is still little nutrient loss. With those having been covered, it’s time to consider how blending actually affect nutrient loss.

As stated earlier, blending increases oxidation, and oxidation causes nutrient loss in food items. Hence, the more you blend, the more nutrient is loss. And while the nutrient lost during blending is indeed insignificant, the more you blend, the closer it gets  to being significant.

So yes, how you blend does affect how much nutrient is lost. If you want to get the most out of your smoothies and fruit juices, you should avoid over blending. Aim to spend as little time as possible blending your ingredients. The moment your desired consistency is reached, turn of your blender. This way, you’d have lost the minimum amount of nutrient possible.

Does the Blender You Use Count?

Yes, the kind of blender you use counts. Depending on the quality of the blender you use for making your juices and smoothies, the blending process might be smooth and quick, or might be more laborious and take more time. With better quality blenders, the process is faster, and as such, even less nutrient is lost. With lower-quality blenders, the process takes longer, and slightly more nutrient is lost. This is yet another reason you need quality blenders.

Interested in getting blenders of great quality? Check out our recommendation for the best blenders to buy in 2023.

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