Blueberries are little gems in our refrigerators. These little beauties have some amazing super powers that are hard to ignore, and now that summer is well and truly on the way (and we’re likely to be indulging in a little more fruit) we thought it was time we revealed some secrets. So what do you know about the rise of the blueberries? Here are ten things you didn’t know about the little blue superfood…
Blueberries are low in fat
Let’s start with the most simple of facts, and remember that as part of a balanced diet blueberries can help to kick start weight loss and/ or maintain a healthy weight. There’s around 80 calories in a single cup, so they’re ideal for snacking on when you need a sweet fix now and then.
Try this raw blueberry cheesecake next time you need a healthy sweet fix:
- 1/2 cup dates
- 1/2 cup walnuts/ almonds/ pecans
- 1 1/2 cups cashews (soaked over night or at least 5 hours)
- 1 cup blueberries- fresh or frozen
- 1/4- 1/3 cup coconut oil, melted
- 1/4 cup agave
- 1 tsp. lemon juice
To make, simply pop the nuts and dates into a food processor and blend until the mixture sticks together. Place into your pan and shape into a crust. Then place all your other ingredients in the food processor and blend until smooth. Pour this mixture on top of crust and smooth out with a spatula. Then put into freezer to set, for at least three hours. Delicious!
They’re packed with vitamin C
We need vitamin C for healthy collagen levels in the body, and for maintaining healthy bone, skin, blood vessels and other tissue. If you don’t have enough vitamin C in your diet, you could suffer with inflammation of the gums, scaly skin, nosebleeds, painful joints to name but a few ailments. Studies also show that eating foods rich in C can reduce the risk of developing cancer. The good news? Blueberries contain at least 25 % of your daily requirements in just one serving.
They’re packed full of fibre
We need fibre to maintain a healthy digestive system and to control cholesterol levels. Fibre also helps to keep the heart healthy, so snacking on blueberries is always a good idea if you’re keen to keep regular!
They have antioxidant properties
Told you blueberries had superpowers. These little gems are bursting with phytonutrients which are called polyphenols. These bad boys are responsible for easing inflammatory processes caused by conditions such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, and other age related diseases. If this was a game of top trumps, blueberries would win over any other fruit when it comes to antioxidant power.
They improve your brain power
Just like we’re told that fish is brain food, well blueberries are too! Flavonoids in blueberries work to protect cells all over your body, including neurons- nerve cells that transmit thoughts, feelings and memories. Studies have found that a diet rich in blueberries or blueberry extract may help to enhance memory function, balance and coordination. So what better reason to pop a few into your breakfast tomorrow morning?
Fancy a brain boost tomorrow morning? Try this super raw blueberry coconut chocolate smoothie:
- 2 fresh coconuts
- 2 cups frozen blueberries
- 2 tablespoons raw cacao powder
- 1 teaspoon vanilla bean powder
- swirls of raw local honey
- pinch of sea salt
To make it, simply Add the water and the meat from the coconuts after opening them, plus the other ingredients to a blender. Blend for 1-2 minutes until the mixture is smooth. Done!
They are a good source of Vitamin A
If you buy organic wild blueberries, they will be packed full of vitamin A, which may help to slow the process of aging- including wrinkles, sagging and dark circles. Blueberries also contain water, which keeps skin hydrated, bouncy and looking young. What more do you want?
They can survive the most extreme of circumstances
Blueberries are grown in North America, where conditions can be tough. The berries found in places like Alaska, thrive in the coldest of temperatures temperatures in a real battle for survival. So it makes sense that blueberries are often described as a hardy fruit- packed with loads of antioxidants and medicinal properties. A real super hero food!
You don’t *have* to eat them fresh
You don’t have to eat anything fresh, really. But usually if you want to get the most out of your food, the fresher the better. Not so with blueberries though. The little blue treats are just as good when frozen or dried and you can even preserve them yourself- and still hang on to all that superpower.
Kids love them
They’re like little sweets- what’s not to love? If you want your kids to to eat a super healthy diet too, then these are the treats to reach for as a great after school snack.
They’ll help to cleanse your kidneys
We all love a little detox now and then, so next time you do one make sure blueberries are on your list of safe foods. Alongside other foods, blueberries can help to support the body’s efforts to cleanse the kidneys, and make a start on reversing the effects of foods such as caffeine, alcohol and refined products.