Food of the Week : Blueberries
Small but mighty, blueberries are a dense delight of vitamins and minerals.
Blueberries are amazing for bone health. A cocktail of vitamins and minerals are responsible for the growth and maintenance of healthy bones. Iron, magesium, calcium, phosphorous, Vitamin K and manganase. Blueberries are a good source of all of these.
The minerals potassium, calcium and magnesium are great for lowering blood pressure. Not only are blueberries rich in all three, but being naturally sodium free enhances this. The Vitamin B6 and folate present in the berries also inhibits production of the compound homocysteine. Science shows high levels of this compound has direct links to heart disease thanks to its destructive capabilities. Superberry or what? 🙂
But that’s not the heart of the matter…
Blueberries superpower is their antioxidant qualities thanks to flavonoids and phenolic compounds within blueberries. Brace yourself for the science bit… Anthocyanins are responsible for giving blueberries (and other purple and blue fruits and veggies) their intense colour. But there is much more to these chemicals than just colour, as this is where the heart of blueberries antioxidant wonders lie. Combined with chlorogenic acid, myricetin, quercetin and kaempferol the result is an antioxidant powerhouse. We’re talking cancer fighting, anti-ageing and anti-inflammatory, fantastic for arthritis patients.. BOOM! 🙂
A good source of fibre also makes the humble blueberry a great weight management tool; great for digestion and satiety, and promoting healthy bowel movements.
Super easy to incorporate into your diet…
Add frozen into smoothies and juices.
Make breakfast easy with overnight oats, add blueberries, nuts and coconut milk or yogurt and chill until breakfast.
Stir a handful of berries into porridge.
Serve with protein pancakes and low fat greek yogurt for a great brunch option.
Enjoy as a dessert with single cream – all the sweetness with zero processed sugar (and the rich cream will also provide a satiety hit!)
Buy in bulk in season – they freeze amazingly without losing a great deal of their nutrient content (unlike their cousin the strawberry!)
Arguably the most important produce item to purchase organic, blueberries can be subject to up to 52 different types of pesticides. It’s a no brainer… choose organic 🙂