Berries must the special gift of Nature to mankind. They are small and quaint-looking; They are in bright and vibrant colors; They are juicy and tasteful; And, if all this is not good enough, they are packed with nutrition! Berries are the best sources of antioxidants that you can find. These antioxidants help fight the oxidative stress that is caused due to free radicals. They have water content that can help you lose weight, keep your brain sharp, and keep off many diseases. There are a number of types of berries found in various parts of the world, and each has its own redeeming, health-promoting quality.
Let us take a look at the most popular and healthy berries.
- Strawberries : These are the most widely known among the berries. Their brilliant and beautiful color make them prominently visible. Strawberries have antioxidant phytonutrients called phenols. Phenols help boost immunity and prevent diseases. They also protect our brain and reduce macular degeneration of our eyes.
Strawberries are rich sources of potassium, fiber, Vitamin C, many B vitamins, iodine, folate, Omega-3 fatty acids, copper and magnesium. Researches indicate that strawberries contain substances that prevent cancer of the liver and esophagus.
- Blueberries : Famously nicknamed as 'brain berries', blueberries are virtual powerhouses of antioxidants. They are purple-blue in color because of high amounts of phytonutrients that help to neutralize free radicals that can damage our cells. Blueberries can improve your memory.
Because of the high degree of free-radical neutralization, they can prevent the collagen matrix of our skin from deteriorating. For this very reason, blueberries are used in a range of skin care products like face sheet masks and creams. Blueberries can reduce the risk of heart diseases, peptic ulcers, varicose veins, glaucoma, and slow the ageing process.
Add a handful of blueberries to your morning breakfast cereal or smoothie, either fresh or frozen, and enjoy the benefits!
- Akai berries : These berries are from the Amazon rainforests and are relatively new to the elite group of super foods. They are known for their healing and energy-boosting properties. Akai berries are known to prevent diseases related to cell-level oxidative damage and slow down aging. Their antioxidant content is twice as much in blueberries. They have high levels of anthocyanins that promote heart health and lower cholesterol.
- Gogi Berries : This berry is grown in Tibet and Nepal, and has traditionally been associated with physical strength and vitality. Scientifically, it has been observed to protect the liver. They have a deep red color and have 18 essential amino acids, 21 trace minerals, vitamins, Linoleic acid, germanium, and selenium. They have large quantities of beta carotene. They were found useful in treating cancer, when used in daily diet.
- Blackberries : They have powerful antioxidants, but even more powerful compounds like Vitamins C,E, and ellagic acid. They have a soluble fiber called Pectin that helps to lower cholesterol levels. Blackberries have showed their ability to stop and control the formation of tumors.
- Cherries : High in antioxidant flavonoid, quercetin, and ellagic acid, cherries protect cells and tissues. They have compounds that may reduce joint and muscle pains. They contain Melatonin that is related to maintaining a youthful appearance and maintain healthy rhythms in sleeping.
There are many more berries in the fray, all of them endowed with the ability to provide you with nutrition and vital antioxidants. Include them in your diet for a 'berry' healthy life!