It has been noticed that some food items lose their look after some time but there are some that may appear fine and also smell fine. For example, bananas turn brown after two or three days. Research has proved that some nutrients are unstable and expire when exposed to heat, light and oxygen. If foods are not stored properly, they tend to lose their potency even faster than they do normally.
Do Nutrients In Food Expire?
Exposure to air, light and heat can cause the nutrients to degrade faster. Keep them in a cool and dry place if the nutrients present in the supplement are very sensitive to light. Some supplements need refrigeration or other unusual storage. It is thus essential to follow the directions written on the label of the bottle. Although nutrients present in food expire after a certain interval of time, you can increase their expiry time by following some tips.
Nutrients in Food
Expired nutrients in food or vitamin supplements do not turn into toxins or poison and it is not dangerous to use them but these nutrients lose their potency. Although there have been no cases of illness or death from expired nutrients, it is still recommended not to use them if they have changed their color or given out an off smell.
How do increase the life of nutrients and when do bid goodbye to the expired ones?
Here we are giving a few tips to increase the life of nutrients of some food.
How to increase the antioxidants in Green Tea
Antioxidants present in green tea decrease dramatically over time. It has been noticed that antioxidants present in green tea reduce by 32% over a period of six months but you can protect them by storing tea in a sealed container in a cool and dark place.
How to increase nutrients in Orange Juice
Orange juice contains vitamin C but it loses all its nutrients after one week only. Olive oil contains a large number of heart-healthy antioxidants but its potency decreases to 40% after six months of storage. The potency of nutrients decreases because oxygen present in the bottle destroys the antioxidants.
Should we use vitamin supplements after expiry dates?
The vitamin supplements also expire. Although consuming expired nutrients is not much dangerous for your health, fail to be as strong as when you bought them. The expired nutrients lose their potency and hence their effectiveness. Once they expire, they decompose and do not provide any health benefits. The expiry date guarantees that the supplement will contain the listed nutrients actively until the date of expiry. Although some of the nutrients can be potent afterwards as well, the company does not guarantee that.
Suppose you are taking vitamin supplements to get some health benefits. If the label indicates that the expiry date is two years, it indicates that the mentioned date is the last date of its highest potency. In such circumstances, it is better to throw away the expired supplement because it is difficult to tell how much of it has degraded. In short, if your supplement expires, try not to use it and buy a new one.
The key to the safe disposal of expired nutrients
If the nutrients in a certain food or supplement have expired and you want to throw them, dispose of them in a proper manner. You should not throw them into the trash or flush them into the toilet. If a child or animal takes it out from the trash and consumes it accidentally, it could get sick. Throwing them into the water supply can hurt water organisms and other people. The best method for disposing of expired supplements is to mix them with used tea and then put it into a container with a lid.
Also Read: 5 Food Safety Tips