B L U E B E R R Y

Of all cultivated fruits, blueberries are one of the best for the home garden. The beautiful bushes blend well into landscaping, growing four to eight feet tall with small, white urn-shaped flowers in spring followed by big crops of blue berries and lovely autumn foliage. Nutritional research has shown that blueberries provide more antioxidants for good health than any other fruit.

About it

Basic information

The blueberry is a flowering shrub that produces berries that are colored blue to purple, also known as blueberries.It is strongly related to similar shrubs, such as those that produce cranberries and huckleberries.Blueberries are small, around 5-16 millimeters (0.2-0.6 inches) in diameter, and have a flared crown at the end.

Nutrients

Blueberries are among the most nutrient dense berries. A 1 cup serving (148 grams) of blueberries contains (1):

  • Fiber: 4 grams.
  • Vitamin C: 24% of the RDA.
  • Vitamin K: 36% of the RDA.
  • Manganese: 25% of the RDA.
  • Then it contains small amounts of various other nutrients.

They are also about 85% water, and an entire cup contains only 84 calories, with 15 grams of carbohydrates.

Antioxidants are important

They protect our bodies from damage by free radicals, unstable molecules that can damage cellular structures and contribute to aging and diseases like cancer. Blueberries are believed to contain the highest antioxidant capacity of ALL commonly consumed fruits and vegetables.The main antioxidant compounds in blueberries belong to a large family of polyphenols, called flavonoids.

Blueberries Reduce DNA Damage and Cancer and Protect Cholesterol

Oxidative DNA damage is part of everyday life.It is said to occur tens of thousands of times per day, in every single cell in the body. DNA damage is part of the reason we grow older, and it also plays an important role in the development of diseases like cancer (11).Because blueberries are high in antioxidants, they can help neutralize some of the free radicals that cause damage to our DNA.In one 4-week study, 168 participants were instructed to drink 1 liter (34 ounces) of a mixture of blueberry and apple juice, every day.

Oxidative damage is not limited to our cells and DNA.It is also problematic when our circulating LDL lipoproteins (the "bad" cholesterol) are oxidized.In fact, oxidation of LDL is a crucial step in the heart disease process.Fortunately for us, the antioxidants in blueberries are strongly linked to reduced levels of oxidized LDL. A daily 50 gram serving of blueberries lowered LDL oxidation by 27% in obese participants, after a period of eight weeks.