A superfood is a food item that is rich in compounds that improve one's health and vitality. Blueberries are superfood because of they contain high amounts of antioxidants, phenols, potassium, fiber, vitamin K, and vitamin C. Let's dig more into theses health-giving perks and learn why you need to eat more of these berries.
Blueberries support heart health
Blueberries are rich in antioxidants and fiber which work together to lower bad cholesterol levels in the blood, lessen the risk of plaque development in the arteries, and improve your overall cardiovascular health.
Blueberries are brain food
Dr. Steven Pratt of Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla, California says that blueberries lower the risk of developing dementia, Alzheimer's disease, and other neurodegenerative diseases by protecting the brain from oxidative stress. These berries have also been found to improve memory, learning capacity, and motor skills.
Recipe tip: The next time you have to study for an exam coming or if you have a long day at work, snack on frozen blueberries. Like any other fruit, the best way to get the most of these berries is to eat them raw.
Blueberries fight cancer
Cancer happens when free radicals attach to healthy cells and damage their DNA. The thing is, free radicals are a natural by-product of cellular activity. Because the body preserves itself, it produces natural antioxidants that get rid of free radicals. By eating antioxidant rich foods like blueberries, you are helping your body keep cancer at bay.
Recipe tip: Aside from berries, green leafy vegetables are also an anti-cancer powerhouse. Discover recipes that combine these foods and to kickstart your cancer-fighting diet. For starters, check out this Blueberry, Broccoli and Spinach Salad recipe.
Blueberries have anti-aging benefits
Did you know that free radicals cause fine lines, wrinkles, age spots and uneven skin tone? The same antioxidants in blueberries that neutralize free radicals in your cells stop these types of damage on your skin. In other words, like wine, blueberries help you age gracefully.
Recipe tip: Acai berries are another natural age-defying agent. For that, here is a Blueberry Acai Super Smoothie that you should try.
Blueberries make your bones strong
Osteoblasts are specialized cells that build bone minerals. According to a paper published in the Journal of Bone and Mineral research, the polyphenols in blueberries help strengthen the bones by speeding up the rate at which these specialized cells are formed. At the same time, these polyphenols halt the production of osteoclasts which weakens the bones and cause diseases like osteoporosis.
Recipe Tip: Bake this Blueberry Lemon Yogurt Cake for even stronger bones. Did you know that the vitamin C in citrus fruits like lemon is essential in the formation of the fibrous part of the bones? Yogurt, of course, is rich in calcium which improves bone density.
Blueberries aid in digestion
They often say that good health starts in your gut. Guess what - blueberries can help you with your gut health too! That's thanks to their rich soluble and insoluble fiber content.
Recent studies have also affirmed that blueberries promote the growth of good bacteria in the colon resulting in the prevention of intestinal irritation. Good bacteria also help improve digestion and absorption of nutrients from your food.
Recipe tip: Indulge into these super yummy yet gut-healthy 3-ingredient Blueberry Yogurt Swirl Popsicles. Of course, summer is always a great time for popsicles.
Summer is blueberry season. July is, in fact, blueberry month. The next time you plan your meals, make sure to get blueberries in there.