Unexpected Health Benefits of Blueberries

A well-known super food, and one of our favorite fruits, is the antioxidant powerhouse: the Blueberry. But why are blueberries good for you? Let’s take a closer look at some of the health benefits of blueberries.

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Blueberries have come to be known as one of nature’s standout superfoods. This fruit is a classic option for topping off your fruit bowl, sweetening muffins and filling perfect pies. but maybe it’s time to look a little more closely at the health benefits of blueberries, and what makes blueberries good for you.

While they might be a bit pricey to find fresh at the market or grocer, the health benefits of blueberries make them truly a worthwhile treat, especially when they’re in season. And when they’re not available fresh, frozen blueberries make a perfectly enjoyable alternative, especially for blending into fruit smoothies, or adding to your morning oatmeal.

Nutritional Value of Blueberries

Phytochemicals

One of the reasons for the health benefits of blueberries is the fact that they’re extremely high in health-giving phytochemicals. And why is that so important? Because phytochemicals are good, good, good for you!

A close up of fresh blueberries sparkling with water drops

From the pungent aroma of garlic to the deep blue hue of blueberries, phytochemicals help give plants their distinctive colors, smells, tastes and other sense-engaging properties. Phytochemicals also help indicate the health of a plant, as well as when it is ready to be eaten and which nutrients may be present.

Many of the phytochemicals listed below provide anti-inflammatory and antioxidant benefits:

  • Anthocyanins (malvidins, delphinidins, pelargonidins, cyanidins, peonidins)
  • Flavonols (kaempferol, quercetin, myricetin)
  • Resveratrol
  • Pterostilbene
  • Hydroxycinnamic acids (caffeic acids, ferulic acids, coumaric acids)
  • Hydroxybenzoic acids (coumaric acids)
  • Hydroxybenzoic acids (gallic acids, procatchuic acids)

And these are only some of the phytochemicals we’ve studied so far!

Vitamins

Along with all of the beautiful compounds listed above, blueberries are also a good source of vitamins including:

  • Manganese
  • Vitamin K
  • Vitamin C

All of these vitamins and phytonutrients gives blueberries their wonderful smell, color, flavor AND the remarkable health benefits for which they have come to be well-known!

A cluster of blueberries ripening on a bush

Health Benefits of Blueberries

Eye health
Anthocyanin (one of the phytochemicals in blueberries) has been shown to protect the retina from damage.

Cardiovascular health
Blueberries can improve blood fat balance (including lowering triglycerides and reducing total overall cholesterol while raising HDL (good) cholesterol. In addition, they protect the blood vessels and certain blood components from oxygen damage.

Blood Sugar Balance
Blueberries (along with many other berries) have been shown to have a favorable impact on blood sugar regulation.

Cognitive Benefits
Studies have demonstrated (especially in elderly patients) that regular consumption of blueberries can improve cognitive function including memory, as well as potentially postponing other cognitive problems often associated with aging.

Anti-Cancer Properties
Studies are beginning to suggest that blueberries may have many anti-cancer benefits, particularly breast cancer, colon cancer, esophageal cancer and cancer of the small intestine.

Full body antioxidant protection and support
Blueberries not only benefit your eyes, cardiovascular system and cognitive abilities, they’re pretty much good for every system in the body! This includes reducing damage to muscles after exercise, protection of the entire nervous system from oxygen damage, reducing the risk of neurodegenerative diseases and protecting the digestive tract from oxygen damage.

And that’s just scratching the surface of what we’ve learned so far about the amazing health benefits of these delicious and nutritious berries.

We’re blessed to live in a world rich with a variety of delicious fruits, veggies, nuts and seeds. Each plant-based food has its own unique flavor, scent and nutritional profile — made of health giving vitamins and phytochemicals (many of which act as antioxidants).

So along with all the other wonderful and delicious plant nutrients you enjoy on a daily basis, pick up some blueberries too!

Related Posts

Carrots: Health Benefits and Recipes
Rainbow Foods: Enjoy Your Phytochemicals!
Kale is the New Spinach

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