Among fruits, blueberries are considered a “superfood” which is wildly popular, sweet and nutritious. It is the favorite fruit of many people all over the world. This vibrant fruit is often overshadowed by other types of berries; however, its nutritional content and health benefits are really incredible.
The health benefits of blueberries are various, ranging from improving brain function to maintaining a healthy heart. If you need more convincing information about how beneficial this fruit is, here are 8 out of proven health benefits of blueberries you may not know. Just read on!
- Support Weight Loss
One of reasons to stock your kitchen with blueberries is that it helps with your weight loss. This nutrient-packed fruit is low in calories and contains a large amount of fiber. Just a cup of blueberries provides you with 3.6 grams of fiber, which meets 14% of your daily fiber needs.
Fiber can move through the digestive tract, thereby enhancing satiety and fulfilling you for longer. On the other hand, according to recent studies, blueberries might affect genes which regulate the process of fat burning and storage. As a result, it helps decrease abdominal fat and cholesterol levels. Therefore, you should enjoy a guilt-free serving of blueberries every day to get a healthy weight.
- Improve Brain Function
Since oxidative stress may aggravate the aging process of our brain, it impacts negatively on our brain function. Fortunately, by eating blueberries, you can maintain good brain function and improve memory thanks to its rich content of antioxidants. Antioxidants in blueberries can interact directly with aging neurons and accumulate in the brain areas which are necessary for intelligence. As a result, it improves cell signaling, protects the brain from free radical damage, and slows down brain aging.
- Prevent Heart Disease
One of the most well-known health benefits of blueberries is preventing heart disease. The major antioxidants in blueberries are anthocyanins, which were linked to a lower risk of heart attacks, according to a study. Eating this little fruit can lower blood pressure as well as oxidized LDL cholesterol, which are two main factors for heart disease.
- Prevent Cancer
When it comes to health benefits of blueberries, the ability to prevent some types of cancer might be the most surprising.
Blueberry extract was proven to help inhibit the development as well as spread of breast cancer cells. In accordance with a 2007 study, drinking blueberry juice decreased the progress of some types of cancer, such as intestine, stomach and prostate. Despite these results are still promising, you should make sure that you eat various types of berries and other fruits to optimize the potential of fighting cancer of your daily diet.
- Lessen Inflammation
If the aforementioned health benefit above were enough to inspire you to enjoy blueberries more often, this fruit is also a natural inflammation fighter. Inflammation is reckoned a normal immune response of the human body, which helps protect it from injury and illness. However, chronic inflammation is dangerous, which is the root of many diseases, including autoimmune conditions, cancer, depression and heart disease.
Blueberries boast theirs anti-inflammatory properties thanks to a high amount of antioxidants. The polyphenols found in this fruit could reduce the function of some markers of inflammation.
- Improve Digestion
As mentioned earlier, there are 3.6 grams of fiber per cup of blueberries. Thus, you should eat more blueberries to meet your fiber needs and promote healthy digestion and regularity.
After you consume fiber, it will travel through your gastrointestinal tract and add bulk to the stool, which keeps you regular. Studies showed that increasing the consumption of dietary fiber could increase stool frequency in people with constipation.
Thus, you had better include a serving or two of blueberries to your diet and pair it with other high-fiber foods such as legumes, seeds, nuts and fruits to maintain a healthy and effective digestive system.
- Fight Urinary Tract Infections
You can fight off urinary tract infections by eating blueberries daily. In fact, blueberries are a relative of cranberry, which is well-known to help prevent urinary tract infections. Blueberries have a lot of similar active substance as cranberry. These substances are anti-adhesives which have the ability to prevent which have the ability to prevent E. coli and other bacteria from binding to the urinary bladder’s wall. This is beneficial in urinary tract infection prevention.
- Alleviate Muscle Damage
After doing strenuous exercise, you may experience fatigue and muscle soreness. This is the result of oxidative stress and inflammation in muscle tissues. By supplementing your body with blueberries, you can decrease muscle damage and minimize the decline of muscle performance.
To sum up, blueberries are really nutritious and healthy. You can enjoy this sweet, colorful fruit in both fresh and frozen form to reap its amazing health benefits.
This article contributed by Victoria Tan