We all know blueberries are good for us right…. but why? Here you will have 10 more reasons to love these beautiful blue bubbles of goodness!
1. Great Source of Vitamin C
Brimming with vitamin C, blueberries help to support our immunity and give us a glowing complexion! Vitamin C supports our immune function, energy metabolism and collagen production. It is the blue/purple pigment foods that are most lacking in our diets so be sure to fire up your intake!
2. Antioxidant Powerhouse
Blueberries rate as one of the highest antioxidant containing fruits and vegetables. This is owed to their high concentration of anthocyanidins, the water soluble antioxidant compound that also gives them their blue/purple pigment, as well as being responsible for most of their health benefits. These antioxidants help protect your cells to reduce your risk of heart disease and cancer. They also contain further cancer-fighting substances called chlorogenic and ellagic acid.
3. Fibre for Happy Bowels
These little gems provide 2.4g of fibre (soluble and insoluble) per 100g serving so add to your oats or nuts and seeds to get a healthy dose towards your recommended 30g per day. This will keep everything moving, helping to clear toxins and support a healthy digestive system! Also, tannins contained in blueberries act as binding agents in the digestive system to help firm up stools. In Europe, blueberries/bilberries (a variety of European blueberry) were traditionally used in the treatment of diarrhoea-related illnesses.
4. Cognitive Function
The antioxidant protection afforded by the anthocyanidins in blueberries may reduce your risk of age-related conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease. The berries help protect our brains against oxidative stress and may slow cognitive decline.
5. Eye Health
The most popular medical use for blueberries is to improve vision and to protect against age-related eye degeneration. This use was discovered after British Royal Airforce Pilots in World War II would consume bilberry preserves before their night missions, in belief it improved their night vision. Subsequent research confirmed this role of blueberry extract. Clinical studies have also shown good results with diabetic retinopathy, as well as protection against the development of cataracts and glaucoma.
6. Buy Organic
Blueberries form part of the Dirty Dozen. This is a list of the most sprayed fruits and vegetables. This means non-organic blueberries have a high concentration of pesticides so when deciding what to buy organic, these flavour-bombs should be top of your list!
7. Natural food dye
You can use blueberries as a natural food dye. In fact, it is thought early American colonists boiled blueberries in milk to make grey paint (a lot less toxic than today’s chemical laden paints I’m sure!)
8. Low GI
Blueberries have a low GI which means the slow release of natural sugars will not spike your insulin levels but give you a sustained energy release throughout the day to keep you feeling good and avoiding the energy slumps that high GI foods (refined sugars) give you. Berries offer the lowest sugar (fructose and glucose) fruit, with maximum benefit so are particularly ideal for those that try to adhere to a low sugar (or fructose) diet.
9. Healthy Heart
Rich in anti-inflammatory anthocyanins (antioxidants) and polyphenols (natural organic chemicals), blueberries support cardiovascular health, decreasing oxidative stress and inflammation.
10. Beware of blueberry frauds
Many blueberry-flavoured foods do not actually contain any blueberry, instead a concoction of artificial flavours, dyes and refined sugars (such as corn syrup) are used to mimic their flavour. To ensure you are receiving the full health benefits afforded by blueberries, eat the REAL berry, either fresh, dried (ideally freeze dried) or powdered. Blackmore’s have even lovingly formulated their Wild Blueberry Blend with extra natural vitamin C to give you all the berry goodness, with a product you can trust is supporting your health and wellbeing.