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Ask Tufts Experts November 2013 Issue

Q: Are the anthocyanidins and other strongly colored phytochemicals in fruit still present in jams/jellies/preserves/marmalades? The colors (not added) are still there.

Answer :  Jeffrey B. Blumberg, PhD, director of Tufts’ HNRCA Antioxidants Research Laboratory, replies: “According to the USDA Database for the Flavonoid Content of Selected Foods, jams, jellies and preserves of fruits do contain some of the anthocyanidins and other flavonoids found in the fresh fruit, albeit at substantially lower con-centrations. The difference in concentrations of flavonoids in fruit vs. jam can vary between the different flavonoids, but the amount in jams/jellies/preserves can be 50-100 times less in many cases (though only several-fold in others). So, although quite tasty, with all their added sugar, you should not choose these forms of fruit for health benefits!”

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