Berries – The Superfoods
Superfoods are nutrient rich foods which are considered excellent for good health because they are power packed with extra large doses of vitamins and minerals that make your brain younger and keep your skin glowing. And if that wasn’t enough they also reduce your risk for cancer, diabetes and other chronic illnesses .
There is one food which tops the charts of superfoods like no other, meet the humble berry.
Berries are delicious and some of the healthiest foods available on the planet. Some of the popular berries that you can pamper yourself with are blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, acai berries and goji berries.
6 Amazing Health Benefits of Berries
1. Berries are loaded with powerful antioxidants
Berries are one of the best sources of natural antioxidants such as Polyphenols, Anthocyanins, Resveratrol and flavonoids. Antioxidants are well known for their action against oxidative stress, preventing and reversing the damaging effects of free radicals which have significant long term detrimental health effects. Oxidative stress is strongly linked with deadly diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.
To know more about antioxidants and their positive influence on our well being, read the article, Antioxidants = Anti Aging
Did you know that berries get their intense bright colours from these powerful antioxidants.
2. Berries are a powerhouse of vital nutrients
Berries are rich in the following nutrients:
Dietary Fiber: Fibre helps to keep our digestive system healthy and helps to prevent constipation.
Vitamin A: Keeps eyes and skin healthy and helps protect against infections.
Vitamin C: Helps keep cells and skin healthy and helps wounds heal quickly.
Vitamin K: Is needed for blood clotting and helps heal wounds. quickly.
Folic Acid: Helps form healthy red blood cells and also helps prevent changes to DNA that may lead to cancer.
Copper: Helps produce red and white blood cells. It is also important for infant growth, brain development, good immune system and strong bones.
Potassium: Helps control the balance of fluids in the body, and also helps the heart muscle work properly.
Manganese: Helps make and activate some of the enzymes in the body which in turn aid in digestion.
3. Berries will make you smarter and think better
Did you know that eating berries can improve your memory and reverse the forgetfulness of old age?
According to research conducted by the Department of Psychiatry, University of Cincinnati Academic Health Center, consumption of blueberries may alleviate the cognitive decline occurring in Alzheimer’s disease and other conditions of aging.
A study published in the European Journal of Nutrition found that eating blueberries improved the brain power in children aged 7 to 10.
4. Beautiful with Berries
Berries such as blueberries, raspberries and blackcurrants are excellent sources of vitamin C and antioxidants. Their proven benefits are:
Anti Ageing/Anti Wrinkle: The Vitamin C in berries boost the production of Collagen which is the most abundant protein in our bodies. It’s what helps give our skin strength and elasticity, along with replacing dead skin cells. By boosting collagen production berries help to improve the health of skin and hair. Collagen also renews and repairs the skin cells thus limiting the oxidative damage done by free radicals.
PhotoProtection: Vitamin C limits the damage done to the DNA by utraviolet (UV) light exposure and along with Vitamin E help protect against photoaging.
5. Berries help prevent cancer
According to the World Health Organization Cancer is the second leading causes of death globally and was responsible for 8.8 million deaths in 2015. In simple terms 1 person out of 6 dies from cancer each year and around one thirds of deaths from cancer are due to the 5 leading behavioral and dietary risks: high body mass index, low fruit and vegetable intake, lack of physical activity, tobacco use, and alcohol use.
The powerful antioxidants and nutrients in berries inhibit the growth of cancer cells by inducing a process called apoptosis which is a natural process to get rid of abnormal cells by making them commit suicide.
According to scientific research the powerful anitoxidants present in berries help in both prevention and treatment of various cancers such as Colon Cancer, Esophageal Cancer, Breast Cancer, Liver Cancer, Pancreas Cancer and Lung Cancer
6. Berries help prevent heart diseases
According to a significant study conducted by the Harvard Medical School there is a strong link between berry consumption and improved heart health. You can’t get the same benefit from a pill or supplement. Dr. Eric Rimm, associate professor at the Harvard School of Public Health who lead this study says, [su_quote]The sooner people start the type of diet that includes a higher intake of blueberries and strawberries, the better[/su_quote]
Dr. Rimm’s team studied 93,600 women in the age group between 25 to 42 over the course of 18 years and found that those who ate the most blueberries and strawberries were 34% less likely to have suffered a heart attack than were women who ate the least of these fruits.
Berries particularly blueberries and strawberries are rich in chemical compounds called anthocyanins which help lower blood pressure, and they make blood vessels more elastic.
In short berries can help you live a longer healthier life. So now can you see why berries should really be your buddies! So go ahead and treat your self to a nice big glass of berry juice.