Food is one of the most important things in life. Every day, people have to eat something to survive. Food plays a vital role in the body's structure, nutrition and prevention of disease.Food is mainly composed of different compounds.We get food mainly from plants and animals. From the very beginning of creation, people have been living on the basis of food. This is a huge important gift from the Creator.
More than just food, the need for healthy food is immense for our healthy lifestyle. Healthy foods are made up of six components. These are carbohydrates, protein, fats, vitamin, mineral and water.Just as food needs so much, preserving food is also important. Because many essential foods are easily rotten. Again, if no food is stored, its quality is lost automatically. You can save a lot of money by being frugal with preserved food. However, people suffer from many diseases throughout the year due to rotten food stored improperly. Even large numbers of people die every year as a result of food poisoning.
According to the World Health Organization, about 600 million people suffer illness from food poisoning every year and 420,000 deaths worldwide . So, that means approximately one in 10 people suffer illness from something they eat or drink every year.
Therefore, you can easily understand the importance of preserving food. So, let’s see what are the purposes of food preservation:
1.Keeping food fresh and protecting food nutrients from rotting.
2.To prevent food waste.
3.Providing assurance for the needs of food for future.
4.To arrange all kinds of food items to be available at all times of the year.
5.Protecting the nutritional value of food etc.**
Two kinds of food preservatives are :
1. Natural food preservative and
2. Artificial food preservative.
Natural food preservatives - salt, sugar, alcohol, vinegar, etc.
Artificial food preservatives - sodium benzoate, benzoic acid, sorbate etc.
Again there are three types of artificial food preservatives.
1. Antimicrobial - (Prevents bacterial growth) -Benzoate, Sorbate, Nitrate.
2. Antioxidant - (Resists black spots) - Sulfide, Vitamin E, Vitamin C, BHT (Butylated hydroxytoluene), BHA (Butylated hydroxyanisole) etc.
3. Chelating Agent - (does not allow food to be poisoned) - Citric acid, lactic acid etc.**
Today we will look at some of the easiest natural ways to preserve food. So let's get started:
Food drying is a process by which the food is dried.This is one of the oldest methods of preserving food. It is estimated that people have been following this method since 12,000 B.C. It mainly inhibits the growth of bacteria, yeast and mold in the food. It basically removed the water from the food.And this water is mainly removed through evaporation such as sun drying, air drying, wind drying and smoking.
The salting method involves preserving the food mainly by giving dry salt in the food. This is an easy and long lasting process. Osmosis is the method by which salt absorbs water from the foods. One of the reasons that water flows mainly through the food is to maintain the concentration of salt within the food’s cell. By salting preservation,water comes out through the salt.Basically, about 25% concentration of the salt kills the bacteria in the food. Many types of bacteria, fungi do not survive within much salt. This method preserves a variety of vegetables, including fish, meat etc.It is also an old method that was invented in the early 19th century.
Freezing is a food-preserving method which inhibits the spread of microorganisms in food through the low temperature(0 degree fahrenheit or -18 degree celsius) . It was first introduced in 1882 by Britain. They began preserving food through the immersion of sea salt and ice.Fresh vegetables have to be blanched before they are frozen so that they can retain their nutrients, enzymes. This method of freezing is very easy and widely used.
Pickling is a food preservation method that is stored by vinegar. Vegetables, fruits, eggs, and curry can be stored for several months by pickling them. Acetic acid, salt, water, sugar and vinegar work best as pickling agent.Basically, these agents destroy the bacteria in the food. Usually the food is pickled in a jar.There are many blogs or videos in preparation for the recipe online.It may take only 15-20 minutes to do this.
The fermentation process is a widely used conservation process.As a result of this process, vegetables can be stored for many months. In this case the lacto-fermentation process is more effective.Some examples of lacto-fermentation are Sauerkraut, kimchi, beet kvass, pickles, onions and garlic .Salt and water are mainly used in this process, which kills the bad bacteria in the food and plays a role in enhancing or improving the good bacteria. Then it creates lactic acid there which makes perfect acidity to prevent the growth of mold and bacteria in the food. Also, the fermentation process in food breaks down carbohydrates and produces alcohol and various organic acids, which protect the food from various bad microorganisms.
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