Top view of a smoothie bowl with fresh ripe blueberry

5 Key Health Benefits of Blueberries

Blueberries are one of my favorite superfoods. Since I try to eat them every day, I dedicate more real estate in my freezer for them compared to any other frozen food!

A natural antioxidant, the humble blueberry has been shown to help maintain optimal health, fight cancer, protect the eyes and heart, improve memory and eradicate free radicals.

Nutritional Summary
Consuming one cup of blueberries will provide you with the following daily values of:

• Vitamin C (24%)
• Vitamin K (36%)
• Manganese (25%)
• Dietary Fiber (17%)

Blueberries are also high in gallic acid, which has anti-fungal and anti-viral qualities.

5 Key Health Benefits

1. Youthful aging – Blueberries are an excellent source of antioxidants. They help repair cellular damage and protect the body from oxidative stress at the DNA, cellular, nervous system, tissue, organ and bone levels of the body.

Cells and tissue that don’t receive enough oxygen are prone to premature death. This results in premature aging and deterioration of the body. The antioxidants in blueberries help prevent aging by improving the cell’s ability to carry oxygen to the tissues throughout the body.

2. Eye Health – Your vision also benefits from having blueberries in your diet. The antioxidants aid and support the health of the retina and has even been proven to help in the prevention of macular degeneration and to help the slowing of cataract progression in elderly people.

3. Cancer Prevention – Recent studies suggest that blueberries have anti-cancer properties, which prevent normal cells from becoming cancer cells, stop the proliferation of cancer cells and help to destroy cancer cells.

4. Heart Health – Consistent supplementation with blueberries is a great way to aid in overall heart health. Studies have shown that blueberries help protect the heart from damage due to reduced blood flow, help to lower blood pressure and decrease cardiovascular risk.

5. Brain Enhancement – A blueberry-enriched diet can help improve brain function and memory. Studies have also found blueberries prevent age related neurodegenerative diseases.

These are just a few of the amazing benefits of blueberries. As a superfood, blueberries just keep giving. If they help the eyes, brain and cells in general, then think of all the support they give your whole body!

• Huang, Wu-yang et al. Survey of Antioxidant Capacity and Phenolic Composition of Blueberry, Blackberry, and Strawberry in Nanjing . Journal of Zhejiang University. Science. B 13.2 (2012): 94–102. PMC. Web. 8 May 2015.
• Liu Y Song X, Zhang D, et al. (2012). Blueberry anthocyanins: protection against ageing and light-induced damage in retinal pigment epithelial cells. British Journal of Nutrition, 108, pp 16-27.
• Faria A, Pestana D, Teixeira D, de Freitas V, Mateus N, Calhau C. Blueberry anthocyanins and pyruvic acid adducts: anticancer properties in breast cancer cell lines. Phytotherapy Research. 2010;24:1862–1869.
• Yi WG, Fischer J, Krewer G, Akoh CC. Phenolic compounds from blueberries can inhibit colon cancer cell proliferation and induce apoptosis. J Agric Food Chem. 2005;53:7320–7329.
• Mak KK, Wu AT, Lee WH, et al. Pterostilbene, a bioactive component of blueberries, suppresses the generation of breast cancer stem cells within tumor microenvironment and metastasis via modulating NF-κB/microRNA 448 circuit. Molecular Nutrition & Food Research. 2013
• Basu A, Du M, Leyva MJ, Sanchez K, Betts NM, Wu M, Aston CE, Lyons TJ. Blueberries decrease cardiovascular risk factors in obese men and women with metabolic syndrome. J Nutr. 2010;140:1582–1587.
• Ahmet I, Spangler E, Shukitt-Hale B, Juhaszova M, Sollott SJ, et al. (2009) Blueberry-enriched diet protects rat heart from ischemic damage. PLoS One 18: e5954.
• Krikorian, R et al. Blueberry Supplementation Improves Memory in Older Adults. Journal of agricultural and food chemistry 58.7 (2010): 3996–4000. PMC. Web. 8 May 2015.
• Subash, Selvaraju et al. Neuroprotective Effects of Berry Fruits on Neurodegenerative Diseases. Neural Regeneration Research 9.16 (2014): 1557–1566. PMC. Web. 8 May 2015.

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