Dehydrating food involves removing the water or moisture content from the food to make it last longer. Some foods can easily be dehydrated while others, such as those with a high oil content, do not tend to fare so well in the process.
Dehydrated food is ideal for those that are hiking and camping and need foods that won’t spoil. It’s also great for travelers, lunchboxes and those that like to keep a food reserve at home.
Meat is one food that is often dehydrated and Beef Jerky is a tasty and convenient snack to eat on the go. Fruits such as bananas, apples and mangos can be dehydrated, as can many herbs, vegetables and sauces.
Whether you are thinking of purchasing dehydrated snacks or using a dehydrator at home, here are some pros and cons to consider:
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1. Help to Retain the Nutrients
When food is cooked, many of the minerals, vitamins and enzymes are lost. However, in the dehydration process, these nutrients can usually be retained.
When these are preserved, you can enjoy more of the health benefits that come with these nutrients.
2. Easy Storage and Preservation
Another big benefit of choosing dehydrated foods over fresh food options is the ease of storage and preservation. When the moisture from the food is removed, this helps to prevent bacteria from growing over time and makes it last far longer.
Also, the dehydration process shrinks the food down and so you will be able to fit far more of the item into your storage containers.
3. Easy to Transport
This also means that the food is easy to transport and can fit into your bag or pocket for a snack while on the go. Being portable makes dehydrated food a good energy booster for a long hike or road trip, you don’t need to worry about refrigeration and the food spoiling quickly.
4. Reduces Waste
Food wastage is a huge problem, it is estimated that 119 billion pounds of food is wasted in the United States each year. Much of this problem is caused by people at home and restaurants throwing out food that is unwanted or has passed its expiration date.
Dehydrated food has a much longer lifespan and so it is far less likely to end up in the trash. You can store dehydrated foods for a long time before they start to spoil.
5. Saves Cash
There are of course money saving benefits to purchasing dehydrated foods or fresh food to dehydrate at home. For example, you can make use of bulk buying discounts at supermarkets and other food stores.
Also, if purchasing dehydrated foods from an online retailer, you do not need to worry about food spoiling during the shipping process.
There are some disadvantages to consider too.
1. The Appearance and Taste of The Food Can Change
Some dried foods do not look as appetizing as they do when fresh and the taste might change with the absence of moisture, It is also important to consider your body hydration as you will not be consuming the same amount of water as you would with fresh ingredients.
2. Increase in Calories
Some store-bought dehydrated snacks can have higher calorie content and less nutritional value, so be sure to check the packaging before purchasing. Maintaining a balanced diet is key for good health and some dehydrated foods are less beneficial than their fresh versions.
There are many benefits to choosing dehydrated food options, including convenience, cash saving and reduced waste. Providing you maintain a balanced and healthy diet; dehydrated foods can be a great food choice for both home and eating on the go.