Features Of Blueberries
Blueberries (and other berries such as raspberries and blackberries) are an excellent source of vitamin C, which helps protect cells against damage and aids in the absorption of iron.
They also contain a decent amount of soluble fibre, which slows down the rate at which sugar is released into the bloodstream and helps to keep the digestive system happy.
Blueberries are extremely rich in phytochemicals, naturally occurring plant compounds, such as ellagic acid and anthocyanidins which are responsible for the blue, indigo and red colouring. Phytochemicals have been extensively researched for their antioxidant action that helps protect the body against a long list of diseases. However, it is important to note that their superfood label is somewhat over the top and all berries, not just blueberries, have similar benefits.
Blueberries are low in calories and a 100g serving provides 1.5g fibre. A wide range of colourful fruits and vegetables are encouraged as part of a balanced diet and blueberries are a fantastic choice to include. One portion of blueberries is about a handful.
The health benefits of blueberries are due mainly to anthocyanidins. They are exceptional antioxidants found in red/purple fruits and vegetables, reported to be effective with a variety of health conditions.
Research has shown that anthocyanidins are highly active phytonutrients transported in the bloodstream where they act on blood vessels and collagen to reinforce and preserve it. They support blood vessel integrity around the body, not only the collagen in skin. This action has linked anthocyanidins to a reduction in cardiovascular disease (by protecting the vessels around the heart).
Another popular use of blueberries is related to vision and protecting against age-related macular degeneration. Legend suggests that during World War Two, British Air Force aviators ate bilberry jam daily to improve their night vision…
Traditional medicine suggests blueberries as a remedy for both diarrhoea and constipation and they may be able to help with urinary tract infections.