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Steaming, Stews, Soups, Raw

PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2013 1:44 am
by jamesndawson
I know some vegetable are more nutritious cooked---carrots, tomatoes, mushrooms....

Are there some vegetables that are more nutritious raw? Is there any need or benefit to eat anything wrong, since eating itself destroys vitamins, as I've read some critics of the raw food diet say?

How much less nutritious are the vegetables in a stew or soup than the same ones steamed? I remember I used to make big pots of stew that'd last a week or more in the refrigerator. This was convenient, especially if you're busy.

Food combining has been debunked, but even Gelert, a scientist on these forums, (as best I understood) suggested drinking green tea with soy milk locks up the anti-oxidents in the tea, that they bind with the protien in the soy and aren't absorbed. So there would seem to be some basis for watching how you combine your foods. What implications would this have for making stews, smoothies, etc.?

I'd like to start making stews with a lot of different leafy greens and beta-carotene vegetables in them, but I wonder if it'd be a lot less nutritious than taking the time to steam them every day.

Re: Steaming, Stews, Soups, Raw

PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2013 2:44 am
by MH1896
very interesting topic! i believe that stews or soups done right are an amazing way to prepare food. you just have to figure out when to add which ingredient so you don't over or undercook any of them. also you have to drink way less if you just consume the water you cook your food in (as in soups obviously :P ). i don't really know about reheating though. might be that leafy greens are quite sensitive there. also i dont know what freezing would do to it...
combining foods the right way is also quite interesting. i've heard that watermelon is best consumed by itself, so no other fruit before or after the watermelon (until it's fully digested i guess...)
then there is the issue of eating complex carbs in combination with simple ones. i think you're not really supposed to combine them directly but rather eat the simple carbs first and then rest, because the complex carbs need longer to digest and the rest will start fermenting on top of it. supposedly... this is hearsay and not researched or anything, but the argumentation seems sound... would be really nice if someone could shed some light on the matter!

Re: Steaming, Stews, Soups, Raw

PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2013 6:02 am
by VeganGraham
Some people make veganism sound far harder than it really is.

I have a very simple way of looking at questions like this.

Water is essential for life, even more essential than vitamins.
If you need a glass of water, then drink a glass of water.
If diluting the water by making squash reduces the amount of water in the glass, then drink two glasses of squash.
If one glass of water contains all the water you need at that time, then drinking two glasses is of no benefit.

Vitamins are essential for life.
If you need vitamins, then eat food.
If cooking that food reduces the amount of vitamins in the food, then eat more food.
If the food you eat contains all the vitamins you need at that time, then worrying about whether it would contain more vitamins if it was raw/cooked/sprouted is of no benefit.

Or, to put it even more simply;
Boiling reduces the vitamin C in vegetables by 25%.
I'd rather eat 1.33kg of mashed potato than 1kg of raw potato.

Re: Steaming, Stews, Soups, Raw

PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2013 11:34 am
by jamesndawson
Thanks BGW. Some hard figures are exactly what I was looking for. As long as there are still a decent amount of nutrients in a stew, that they're not all boiled away, then I'm fine with it.

Re: Steaming, Stews, Soups, Raw

PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2013 3:51 pm
by blinki
People who eat a reasonable amount of veg don't have vitamin deficiencies worth bothering about- I'm sure plenty of people could do with slightly more of something but not really worth worrying about. Almost nobody (as a % of people in the world who eat a reasonable amount of veg) eats their veg mostly raw, a very small amount of people eats their veg mostly steamed. The majority of people eat their veg boiled. If there was some sort of worthwhile worry about boiling your veg do you not think we'd all know about it? I'd make an educated guess that even the rise in steamers has more to do with companies wanting to create a market for them rather than nutrition.