Sunday, 13 January 2013

Picking Beautiful Blueberries




Blueberries burst with flavor and good health. They even came out on top for antioxidant activity when more than 40 commercially available fruits were tested. The dark blue pigment found in blueberries contains phenols called anthocyanins (flavonoids with powerful antioxidant capabilities). Consequently, they have many health benefits, so try to enjoy 3 or 4 cups of blueberries every week. Tapping into the antioxidantpower of blueberries Blueberries are a significant source of vitamin C, manganese (an essential
trace mineral important for many chemical reactions in your body), and fiber. Plus, like many superfood fruits, they’re low in calories. One cup of blueberries contains 14 milligrams of vitamin C, half a milligram of manganese, 4 grams of fiber, and only 84 calories. Blueberries help your body in several ways:

✓ They keep your heart healthy. The anthocyanins keep your blood vessels strong. According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the darker pigments in blueberries may lower cholesterol.

✓ They help prevent cancer. According to research published in 2008 in The Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, antioxidants in blueberries may help to prevent colon cancer and ovarian cancer by mpromoting anticancer activity in your cells.

✓ They keep your vision clear. Blueberries contain natural compounds related to vitamin A called lutein that promote healthy night vision and prevent macular degeneration (an age-related eye disease that’s the leading cause of vision loss in the elderly). The Age-Related Eye Disease Study conducted by the National Eye Institute in 2001 confirmed the effectiveness of lutein and other antioxidants.

✓ They keep your mind sharp. According to the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research, a substance in blueberries (as well as other berries) may help to protect you from some of the deleterious effects of Alzheimer’s disease.

✓ They prevent urinary tract infections. The natural compounds in blueberries prevent bacteria from sticking to the walls of your bladder, which prevents urinary tract infections.

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