Blog | Monday, July 1, 2019

Why you should definitely eat more blueberries

Many of you may not know this, but back when I first started my blog several years ago, it was solely about health, wellness—and in particular healthy eating. This week, I'm going to return to those roots, and discuss why you should regularly be eating more blueberries for your health and well-being.

Out of any foods on the planet, blueberries have one the highest known anti-oxidant contents. These are in the form of compounds known as polyphenols and anthocyanins (the anthocyanins are responsible for the blue pigment). A reminder of what anti-oxidants are: these are substances that help act against dangerous free radicals that accumulate in the body and are frequently implicated in diseases such as cancer and heart disease. In fact, 100 grams of fresh blueberries will often contain more anti-oxidants than 5 whole servings of fruits and vegetables!

Scientific research backs up the enormous benefits of blueberries.

Studies show:
• Mice who were injected with polyphenol extracts from blueberries performed much better after just 1 week on tests designed to assess their memory and learning. Another study in mice showed that blueberries helped promote autophagy, a bodily process that helps recognized damage cells.
• Obese people who drank a daily blueberry drink showed significant reductions in their blood pressure after just 8 weeks.
• People who drank a blueberry drink twice daily showed improved insulin sensitivity, which is important in diabetes risk.
• People who regularly consume anthocyanins have a reduced heart attack risk of up to 32 percent (the effect is particularly evident in women).
• Blueberries help lower cholesterol and improve lung function too!

[Happy to provide references/citations to any of the above studies]

One cup of blueberries, about 150 grams, will contain:
• Only 80 calories
• 25 percent of your RDA (recommended daily allowance) of vitamin C, 35 percent RDA vitamin K, and high in other trace elements like manganese
• It also has a relatively low glycemic index of 50

You can eat blueberries in so many different ways including just grabbing a handful of them, sprinkling them on your healthy cereal, putting them in your yoghurt or even on your salad. They are delicious. I encourage you to go out and buy some right now!

Suneel Dhand is an internal medicine physician, author and speaker. He is the founder of DocSpeak Communications and co-founder at DocsDox. He blogs at his self-titled site, where this post first appeared.