Raspberries, blueberries, strawberries and black currants represent a group of fruit literally packed with nutrients. The uniqueness of these berries is mainly hidden in the content of a wide range of vitamins and minerals and poly-phenolic compounds that have a significant impact on health. Berries are considered to be natural “functional food”, which means that their regular consumption helps to promote good health.
Health benefits of berries
The influence of polyphenolic compounds is very wide, judge it yourself: they protects us from adverse effects of oxygen free radicals(antioxidant protection) that are partially causing cardiovascular cancer, they have antibacterial and antiviral effects, improve memory, reduce aging process, prevent oxidation of LDL cholesterol, relieve stomach indigestion, help metabolism function, support breathing, help maintain good eyesight, reduce muscle fatigue and reduce fatigue in general.
Medical use of berries
Even our ancestors knew the benefits of berry consumption. They used the berries and also leaves for medical reasons. For example blueberry leaves can be used to adjust blood sugar levels for diabetics, dried blueberry help diarrhea, raspberry and strawberry leaves make great tea. Raspberry juice relieves fever, blueberries juice helps with mouth ulcers and other mouth diseases. According to folk medicine advices we should eat at least 1.5 kilograms of berries during the season!
Vitamins and minerals in berries
Berries are rich in vitamin C-especially black currants. It may sound unbelievable, but 100 grams of black currant contains from 87 to 219 mg of vitamin C, which corresponds to 108-270 % of the recommended daily dose of and there are some varieties of blackcurrant containing in 100 grams up to 450 mg of vitamin C! Berries also contain a significant amount of B group vitamins, vitamin K and beta-carotene. Strawberries are one of the richest sources of folic acid. From minerals found in berries we should mention iron, calcium, potassium, phosphorus, zinc, copper but also manganese, which is important for proper enzyme activity and for storing calcium deposition in bones.
In terms of calories, berries are on the lower side, especially strawberries. They are a perfect match with cottage cheese, yogurt or ricotta. Thanks to these proteins you will feel more full and your snack will be nutritionally balanced too.
Berries are widely used in gastronomy. They are suitable not only for fruit and cottage cheese desserts, but make excellent fruit sauces, gravies, dumpling fillings or are perfect for tossing on cakes and muffins. Of course, it is best to eat berries fresh, but freezing is also a very good way to prepare for the long winter months.