Colorful fruits and vegetables tend to be the richest sources of antioxidants, and blueberries, with their intense, dark color, have a higher antioxidant content than most foods (including most other berries), as well as being a good source of vitamin K, vitamin C, manganese, and fiber.
There are many reasons why blueberries are usually listed among the superfoods (foods with the most significant health-protective effects).
In addition to promoting heart and urinary tract health and protecting against cancer, stroke, and Alzheimer’s disease, new research suggests that eating blueberries may improve general cognitive function and memory.
Blueberries also have a low glycemic index, which means that they may help to regulate blood sugar. Also, the fact that a whole cup of blueberries is quite filling but contains only around 80 calories makes blueberries a good food for weight loss.
Freezing fresh blueberries does not diminish their antioxidant content, so you can enjoy them year-round without resorting to environmentally harmful shipped products. However, blueberries are among the foods most likely to be contaminated with pesticide residues, so buying organic or growing your own is recommended.
Blueberries are quite easy to grow. Even if you don’t have a yard, they do well in containers on a sunny patio or balcony (I have a few growing happily in large pots on a roof deck – other than being careful not to overwater them, they don’t require much special care).
Blueberries are among the healthiest foods you can eat, and there are plenty of ways to add them to your diet. For example, you can blend them into fruit smoothies or protein drinks, add them to baked goods, use them in sauces and salads, buy or make blueberry jam (ideally sugar-free), or have blueberries for dessert on their own or with ice cream or whipped cream.
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Blueberries Health Research, n.d. http://www.agrireseau.qc.ca/petitsfruits/documents/4%20Aspect%20sante%20W%20Kalt%20.pdf
Environmental Working Group, “EWG’s 2012 Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce,” 2012.
George Mateljan Foundation, “Blueberries,” World’s Healthiest Foods, 2012. http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=8
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