5 Health Benefits of Blueberries
I am not a big fruit eater, however, I do indulge in blueberries 1-2 times a week because of their amazing health benefits especially for cancer, brain, heart, and even a a beauty food.
Blueberries have been domesticated for over 100 years and native to North America. They are rich in antioxidants, which are considered scavengers of free radicals that are harmful molecules.
Blueberry Nutrition Facts
Blueberries are one the super foods that is very nutrient dense with many health benefits and rich in phytochemicals.
1 cup/serving contains 80 calories
3.6 grams fiber/serving
21 grams carbohydrates/serving
15 grams sugar/serving
Vitamin K (36% DV)
Manganese (25% DV)
Vitamin C (24%)
And what are the benefits?
1. Brain Power
Research shows that blueberries contain polyphenols which decreases stress signaling and helps increase learning, memory, improved cognition along with an increased in growth of the hippocampus in the brain which is responsible for memory.
2. Beauty Food
Not only do blueberries taste yummy but can help you look good too! The deep blue/purple color comes from compounds called anthocyanins, which are powerful antioxidants. They help protect the skin against harmful free radical damage that can damage collagen which helps keep your skin firm.
3. Combat Cancer
Blueberries have been found to decrease inflammation, inhibit tumor growth and slow down various types of cancer including colon, lung, pancreatic and prostate. Their powerful antioxidant activities from Vitamin C, Vitamin A and phytonutrients help protect the cells from free radical damage.There is also a link to the reduction of DNA damage, which is vital for healthy cells.
4. Weight Loss
Consuming adequate dietary fiber will aid in weight loss: 25 grams for women and 35 grams for men is ideal. Dietary fiber is important in weight loss because it functions as a bulking agent and helps with satiety and makes you feel full and minimizing your overall caloric intake.
5. Heart Health
Blueberries contain folate and vitamin B6 which help prevent the build up of homocysteine. This compound can damage the blood vessels and lead to heart disease.
About Blueberries. Available at www.blueberrycouncil.org/about-bleberries/history-of-blueberries
Ware, Mega, Blueberries: Health benefits, Fact, Research. Available at www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/287710.php
Wang et al. Comparison of phytochemical profiles, antioxidant and cellular antioxidant activities of different varieties of blueberry (Vaccinium spp.). Food Chem. 2017 Feb 15;217:773-81
Zhan W et al, Effects of blueberries on migration, invasion, proliferation, the cell cycle and apoptosis in hepatocellular carcinoma cells. Biomed Rep. 2016 Nov;5(5):579-584. Epub 2016 Oct 10.
Shukitt-Hale B et al, The beneficial effects of berries on cognition, motor behaviour and neuronal function in ageing. Br J Nutr. 2015 Nov 28;114(10):1542-9. doi: 10.1017/S0007114515003451. Epub 2015 Sep 22.
Blueberry, raw Nutrition Facts & Calories available at www.nutritiondata.self.com/facts/fruits-and-fruit-juices/1851/2