One of the most delicious treats summer has to offer is the abundance of fresh berries. Bursting with sweet flavor and rich in antioxidants, the health benefits of berries are countless. They’re also a delicious, seasonal way to eat well. But you may be wondering how to keep berries in your diet all summer long without getting bored. If so, this roundup of berry dishes is just the thing for you! So many creative, healthy recipe ideas, many of them gluten-free and vegetarian/vegan, just in time for you to make this a berry good summer indeed. Read: 45 Best Healthy Berry Recipes.
Health Benefits of Berries
Help ward off urinary-tract infections (UTI’s) – Blueberries, like cranberries, help fight off UTI’s, according to a Rutgers University study. If you get UTI’s, toss a handful of blueberries into your smoothie. It’s always good to mix it up and to eat a colorful variety of fruits and vegetables.
Food for the brain – A recent study in England suggests that berries reverse age-related memory loss, thanks to their abundance of antioxidants called flavonoids. Another study shows that women who ate 2 servings of strawberries a week or 1 serving of blueberries a week experienced less cognitive decline than women who didn’t incorporate berries into their diet. The chemical compound called polyphenolics found in berries is reported to help prevent Alzheimer’s disease.
Cancer and illness prevention – The antioxidants in berries can help your body fight oxidative stress caused by free radicals that can lead to illness and cause cancer. They can also reduce inflammation, help prevent arthritis, as well as aid in joint flexibility. Start eating just a half-cup a day of blueberries.
Lower blood pressure – Certain compounds found in berries, especially blueberries, were found to lower blood pressure and prevent hypertension, according to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
Lower cholesterol – A study done by the University of California at Davis shows that berries can lower cholesterol levels with blackberries having the highest LDL inhibitory effect, followed by red raspberries, sweet cherries, blueberries and strawberries.
Great for weight management – Since berries are loaded with water and fiber, they leave you feeling full which helps with weight loss and management.
Prevent Parkinson’s Disease – According to research published in the Neurology Journal, people who eat at least two servings of berries a week reduced their risk of developing Parkinson’s disease by 25%.
Vision problems – Blueberries, blackberries, raspberries and strawberries are especially helpful for eyesight problems and cataracts.
Wishing you a berry good summer.
- Health.com The Amazing Benefits of Blueberries
- Everyday Health.com 9 Amazing Health Benefits of Berries
- Joy Bauer Health Benefits of Berries
- American Chemical Society Eating Berries Can Help Lower LDL Cholesterol