If you love eating blueberries and enjoy adding them to just about any dish, well, here’s some great news – blueberry is claimed to be one of the healthiest foods, even dubbed as a superfood. Studies and researches done over the past decades have shown that blueberry is packed with vitamin K, vitamin C, manganese, copper and fibre, and has anti-inflammatory effects. It is also helpful in fighting heart diseases, memory loss and certain types of cancer. Now that’s even more reason to indulge in regular servings of the indigo-coloured succulent fruits!
Benefits Against Aging and Neurodegenerative Diseases
Blueberry intake is found to help lessen the effects of neurodegenerative diseases. In a study on blueberry supplementation, it has been found that older adults who were experiencing Mild Cognitive Impairment or early memory decline were able to improve their memory and cognitive function with regular consumption of blueberry juice during a 12-week period. Another study noted that the high amounts of flavonoids in blueberries can delay cognitive aging.
In addition, the presence of the phytonutrient resveratrol in blueberries can enhance balance and decrease motor-related problems, making them most beneficial for older adults.
Decrease the Risk of Heart Diseases
Including blueberries in your diet can strengthen the cardiovascular system and reduce the risks of heart attacks and heart ailments. The antioxidants in blueberries can reduce cholesterol levels, lower triglycerides levels, and improve fat balances. Moreover, the phytochemicals in blueberries can control how the body stores and burns fats, which is helpful in reducing belly fat.
More Health Benefits
- Blueberries have low glycemic index, which means the increase in blood sugar is significantly low after eating them. This is perfect for people who need to regulate their blood sugar, especially those with type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome. Certain types of sugars are causes of indigestion and bloating. These conditions are avoided when eating blueberries because they have low sugar content.
- Blueberries protect the nervous system from oxidative stress, thanks to their antioxidant content. Antioxidants get rid of harmful free radicals that can damage cells and DNA, and may cause heart attack, Parkinson’s disease, and disorders of the nervous system. Blueberry also contains anthocyanin, which gives the fruit its lovely colour and helps slow down the signs of ageing.
- Research has shown that blueberry consumption may promote healthy bone growth.
- Blueberries have lutein and zeaxanthin, which are known to be beneficial for eye health. Specifically, eating blueberries can provide the retina protection against too much exposure to sunlight and can prevent the development of macular degeneration.
- Consuming blueberries provide good protection for the digestive tracts and, possibly, can prevent colon cancer.
How Much to Eat?
The recommended amount of blueberry for daily or weekly intake can vary depending on age and other factors. But in most researches, those who consumed a half cup serving of blueberries at least three times a week fared better than those who had fewer consumption. People can eat as much as one to two servings a day, as the low sugar and calorie content make these delicious fruits healthy.
Ways to Enjoy Blueberries
If you’re looking for interesting ways to incorporate blueberries into your daily diet, there’s a ton of blueberry recipes that you can try and enjoy. You can snack on fresh blueberries. You can add them to your cereal, or use them to make smoothies, fruit flans, or muffins. However, it is important to note that cooking can lead to loss of nutrients and loss of their health benefits.
You can grab a pack of frozen blueberries from the supermarket and enjoy their health benefits. Or, if you don’t have a convenient source of blueberries but still want to add them it into your regular diet, you can opt for blueberry supplements as an alternative. In fact, laboratory studies show the many benefits of blueberry powder or juice.