Fresh foods begin losing vitamins as soon as they are picked, and often sit in warehouses or in transit for as long as two weeks before they find their way into the market to sit even longer waiting to be purchased.
Fresh fruits and some vegetables are harvested before they are even ripe, and depend upon time and other means to reach the ripened state. Canned foods are harvested at their peak of ripeness and normally cooked and processed from the source within hours, thus preserving more vitamins than their fresh counterparts.
Over 1,500 food products are available in a canned state, lending convenience and diversity to those with a busy lifestyle. The sodium content in commercially-canned foods has been significantly reduced, up to 40% over old canning methods.
Most canned foods are also now available in low-salt, no-salt, low-sugar, and no-sugar preparations for those with special dietary needs and/or those who want a more natural flavor.
Canned food is not as nutritionally sound as fresh food. Canned food often has a lot of salt or preservatives in it to keep it shelf-stable, plus water-soluble or heat-sensitive vitamins and minerals are often greatly reduced in canned food. If it's all you have, it's alright, it's not terrible - there's still fiber and some vitamins and minerals in there, but it's nowhere near as good for you as fresh. Especially fruits and vegetables! Canned beans are still alright, but fruits...