Berry Fever: Why You Should Eat More

berriesThe power of berries has been the hype of nutritional research for many years now especially when looking at fighting diseases. Researches are unveiling more evidence that richly coloured fruits and vegetables provide us with disease-preventive compounds against diseases such as cancer, heart disease and Alzheimer’s disease.

Berries are packed with supercharged antioxidants that boost your body’s defence mechanism against damaging free radicals, which are harmful compounds that damage and destroy body cells. The berry compounds of interest are called anthocyanins, which are colour pigments in fruits and vegetables responsible for the blue, purple and red colours. Anthocyanins are believed to help the prevention of cancers and tumours as well as reducing inflammation in your body such as inflammation of the intestines. They were also shown to reduce stomach ulcers, and strengthen the cardiovascular system by maintaining blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

blueberriesBlueberries are known as little antioxidant powerhouses that protect the heart, immune system and digestive tract. Some studies have also shown the benefits of blueberries extending to the brain where they may slow down the progression of cognitive problems associated with ageing such as dementia. Blueberries are a good source of vitamin K, manganese, vitamin C and fibre. They are also considered a low GI food (low glycaemic index), which would help control blood sugar levels. Being low in calories makes them an excellent snack to have!

Strawberries are also known to be excellent antioxidants despite being considered a fragile and delicate fruit. The compounds found in strawberries are believed to work synergistically to protect the heart by regulating blood pressure and reducing bad cholesterol levels. Inflammation related to arthritis and diseases of the eye were areas of research where strawberries demonstrated health benefits. Additionally, their anti-cancer benefits are also seen in breast and colon cancer. Strawberries are also rich in vitamin C, manganese, fibre, potassium and folate. images 

gardening-graphics_1069316aCranberries are known for their ability to prevent urinary tract infections by preventing bacteria from attaching to the bladder wall, which then allows the body to flush them out. Cranberries are also believed to provide us with digestive tract benefits by preventing stomach infections by the bacterium, Helicobacter pylori and also reducing our risk of colon cancer. They are considered a great source of vitamin C, fibre and also contain vitamins K and E.

Blackberries are succulent marvels rich in anthocyanins, which are believed to protect the liver, reduce inflammation and provide benefits against cancer. Blackberry extracts have also been shown to provide antibacterial protection as well as protecting blood vessels. Blackberries are an excellent source of vitamin C and contact minerals such as potassium, manganese, copper and magnesium. Blackberrys with Leafs

The ever-growing research on berries provides us with endless reasons as to why they should become a part of our daily diet. 

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