Dried fruit… Healthy or not? Well, you would think dried fruit is healthy since it is fruit. Not quite.
Dried fruit is made by dehydrating fresh fruits. Frequently, the fruits are pretreated to help preserve them before drying them in the sun or in an oven. You can make dried fruit yourself or buy it in your local grocery or health food store. The drying process concentrates some of the nutrients of the fruit, while others are lost.
Generally speaking, dried fruit contains sulfur dioxide used to preserve it. Why is this a problem? Well, it might not be if you are not asthmatic. But, there is research that shows that sulfites have a negative impact on people who are asthmatic. As stated in many articles, “According to the FDA, approximately one in 100 people is sensitive to sulfites in food. The majority of these individuals are asthmatic, suggesting a link between asthma and sulfites. Individuals who are sulfite sensitive may experience headaches, breathing problems and rashes. In severe cases, sulfites can actually cause death by closing down the airway altogether, leading to cardiac arrest.” Yikes!
Well, I hate to be a killjoy, but right about now, I will tell you – buying organic is definitely necessary when it comes to dried fruit. I love my dates too, but I certainly will be staying away from dried fruit that has sulfites.
In this case, it is either fresh or organic! Oh – and this leads me to disappointing you further. Have we talked about the sulfites in wine? Well, I think I’ll save that for another day. In the meantime, make your dates organic.