Nothing says summer like a basket full of garden ripe tomatoes and leafy greens. Plates of summer squash and berries, especially here in Melbourne, FL, are also token summer staples. When looking to incorporate the cleanest foods possible into your diet, it also pays to make sure you know how to correctly store your produce so that it stays fresh for as long as possible. Fountain of You, Melbourne’s premier anti-aging and aesthetic clinic, knows that eating fresh ingredients from nature is a powerful way to keep your skin and body in tip-top shape. We also know that trying to incorporate a mix of fresh fruits and veggies is important to your overall health. Here are some great ways to keep that powerful produce fresher longer.
The items you store together will have an impact on how long they last. For example, it is best to store fruits and vegetables separately. Fruits emit ethylene, a hormone that assists with growth and further development. This hormone is vital for fruits as it helps them ripen but it can cause vegetables to ripen prematurely, so you will want to keep the greens and other veggies away from fruits to keep them fresh.
To store vegetables effectively, trim them first and remove any twist ties or rubber bands that may be keeping them held together. You can rinse them first to remove any residue, just make sure you dry them before returning them to their packaging. Also, make sure any bags that you are putting them back into have a hole for proper ventilation. Room to breathe is also important. It can be tempting to cram your produce drawer with all of your delicious finds, but MyFitnessPal advises strongly against this. If you have fresh mushrooms and herbs, you will want to wait until just prior to use before rinsing them. Carrots and other root vegetables will ripen quickly so it is advised that you put them in a bowl of water and keep them refrigerated Cucumbers are a different story altogether. It seems as though these refreshing vegetables should be refrigerated; however, they don’t do well at temps under fifty degrees. For more information on this topic check out this article from Real Simple. It has some great tips for how long your produce will last given proper storage protocols are followed.
Fruits have different needs. If you are like most, you have a bowl of fruit sitting out for easy grab and go snacking. This can be a great idea, just remember that they will ripen much faster when left unrefrigerated and sitting close together. Bananas will last around 5 days if left out while apples can last a whopping 3 weeks when not refrigerated. If you want to hasten the ripening process, leave fruits out and then refrigerate them. Stone fruits can be left out until your preferred texture is reached and then refrigerated while berries should be rinsed, dried, and then put back into a paper lined container with the lid left open.
Incorporating many varieties of fresh produce into your diet is always a good thing, but having your fresh groceries go bad too quickly certainly is not. Follow some of these ideas and keep the goodness going for much longer! Your body and your budget will thank you.