During the first few weeks of this pregnancy my breakfasts consisted of a bowl of fresh berries and a green smoothie. I couldn’t get enough berries. Which I suppose is why I decided to write an eBook featuring strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries!
I grew up loving berries. I could hardly wait for strawberry season to arrive. My Mom would often take us picking so she could make homemade jam (she makes the best strawberry jam in the world).
My Grandmothers were master pie bakers so there was always some sort of fabulous berry-filled pie at our summertime family get-togethers.
I’m grateful that berries are so good for us. Here’s 5 reasons to love berries and to eat them on a regular basis as part of a healthy, whole foods diet.
1. Berries are a locally grown super-food.
In most places in North America, berries are grown locally so you can save money, eat them seasonally, talk to the farmer about growing and harvesting practices, and buy them by visiting your Farmer’s Market (so you’re also supporting your local community). So many of our super-foods come from hundreds of miles away. They lose flavor and nutritional value during the shipping process. I know it’s important to eat goji berries and mulberries, but it’s also important to eat locally grown foods.
2. Berries are loaded with antioxidants.
Eating a diet rich in antioxidants can improve your health, protect your skin and hair, prevent certain diseases, and help slow down the aging process. All fruits and vegetables contain antioxidants, but nutrient-rich berries are some of the best sources. Antioxidants fight the free radicals that can damage our cells and DNA. Eating antioxidant-rich foods like berries is like giving ammunition to your own soldiers!
3. Berries are known to reduce inflammation.
Because of the antioxidants, berries protect the body from damage and further inflammation, or chronic inflammation. Check out Julie Daniluk’s post about the benefits of eating blueberries in particular. Who knew that little berry could help ease the pain of arthritis!
4. Berries are high in fibre and water content.
Any juicy fruit or vegetable is high in water, and we all know how juicy berries are! Foods that are high in fibre and water also help you feel full so you end up eating less, therefore they’re also good for those of you who are interested in weight loss. Fibre also helps lower cholesterol and assists the digestive system with elimination. They’re the perfect fruit for those of you who don’t like drinking water. Get your water intake up by eating juicy berries!
5. Berries are high in vitamin C.
Vitamin C is an essential vitamin meaning it is not synthesized by the body and must be obtained via the foods we eat. Vitamin C plays a role in the formation of collagen (the main protein substance of the body), muscle integrity, blood vessels, and body tissues. And did you know that strawberries (a one cup serving) contain more vitamin c than an orange?
What’s your favorite berry?
For lots of recipes using berries, check out my new eBook Berrylicious 25 New Mouth-Watering Recipes for Enjoying the Summer’s Healthiest Fruits . It’s just $7 and it’s loaded with 25 recipes featuring strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries!
If you have a hard time finding locally grown organic berries, start talking to your berry farmers. Ask them what they spray on their berries and why they spray. Farmers need to know that we don’t want our fruits and veggies to be sprayed. The only way they’ll know that is if we engage in conversations with them.
Check out these sources for more information: