Maintaining antioxidant potential of fresh fruits and vegetables after harvest.
Sommaire de l'article
The consumption of fruits and vegetables has increased in the past few years, not only because of their attractive sensorial properties, but also for their nutritional and health benefits. Antioxidants are compounds found in fresh fruits and vegetables, and evidence of their role in the prevention of degenerative diseases is continuously emerging. However, the antioxidants in some fruits and vegetables can be lost during handling after harvest, even during minimal processing and storage. In this sense, postharvest treatments are needed to preserve the quality and antioxidant potential of fresh produce. Postharvest treatments and technologic strategies (including ultraviolet light, controlled and modified atmospheres, heat treatments, and application of natural compounds, such as edible coatings, active packaging, microencapsulation, and nanoemulsion) have shown positive and promising results to maintain fruit and vegetable antioxidant potential. The purpose of this review is to analyze and propose the application of postharvest strategies to maintain, or even improve, the antioxidant status of fruits and vegetables, thus offering options to maximize health benefits to consumers.