The term “super food” is thrown around frequently these days. In the case of berries, that term actually fits quite well.
Berries are rich in antioxidants, fiber, nutrients and they’re relatively low in calories and sugar. They’re easy to find year round, whether fresh or frozen. And perhaps most importantly, eating them feels like a treat. I suggest you treat yourself right and include more berries in your diet.
The pigments that give berries their beautiful blue and red hues are also good for your health.
Berries contain phytochemicals and flavonoids that may help to prevent some forms of cancer. Cranberries and blueberries contain a substance that may prevent bladder infections.
Eating a diet rich in blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, cranberries and strawberries may help to reduce your risk of several types of cancers. Blueberries and raspberries also contain lutein, which is important for healthy vision.
Great example of a healthy breakfast! Greek yoghurt+fresh fruit+ muesli
OM NOM NOM
8 ice cubes
8 ounces hulled strawberries, frozen
8 ounces fresh pineapple chunks, frozen
1⁄2 cup (125 ml) pineapple juice
2 tbsp skim milk powder
1 tbsp sugar (optional)
sprigs of fresh mint or pineapple mint to decorate (optional)
15 minutes, plus freezing time
Put the ice cubes in a food processor or heavy-duty blender and process until they are finely crushed. Alternatively, wrap the ice cubes in a tea towel and bash them with a rolling pin, then put them in the processor or blender.
Add the strawberries, pineapple chunks, pineapple juice and milk powder and process again until blended but still with small pieces of fruit and ice visible.
Sweeten with sugar, if necessary. Process briefly using the pulse button.
Spoon into tall glasses, decorate each with a sprig of mint, if you like, and serve with long spoons.
1 cup of strawberries
1 cup of blueberries
½ cup of pomegranate or acai juice
Method: Blend all ingredients on high in a food processor or blender. Pour into popsicle molds and freeze for about two and a half to three hours. Insert popsicle sticks and freeze for another few hours or overnight. This bright berry recipe is very high in antioxidants.
Tip: You can also freeze the berrylicious mixture in ice cube trays and using them instead of plain ice — they’ll make a great addition to summery drinks at a barbecue.
1. Cherries – Pain relief without the side-effects
Not only are these beautiful, luscious mini-fruits a wonderful snack, they are known to be great for warding off pain and inflammation according to researchers at Michigan State University. Antioxidants called anthocyanins block certain enzymes from sending pain signals to the brain. Who would have thought that two cups of this summer favorite could be better than two aspirin. Additionally, new research suggests that they are linked to reducing risks for heart disease, diabetes, and some types of cancers. Want a good night sleep? Eat a cup of ripe cherries an hour before bed. They contain melatonin, a natural chemical that the body needs to regulate sleep patterns.
2. Blueberries – Brain food, Fat-burner, “Super Food”
Wow, what a great way to get smarter, thinner, and healthier! The great thing about blueberries is they are so versatile and easy to eat. Smoothies, pancakes, fruit salad, yogurt, all just a few ways to enjoy them. And, adding just a half a cup of this antioxidant-filled fruit to your daily menu can help neutralize free radicals that damage cells. They also protect our bodies from developing cataracts, glaucoma, varicose veins, and certain cancers, according to Lynda Johnson, R.D., Nutrition & Health Education Specialist with University of Missouri Extension.
Because of the sugar-balancing attributes of blueberries, you can fend off cravings that naturally lead to bad choices, the sugar-high/crash syndrome, and weight gain. Start eating those little blue powerhouses and shave off up to 5% of your body weight in six months. The key is consistency as the researchers at Brooke Army Medical Center in Texas have learned.
3. Watermelon – A Sleep aid?
This is one that I did not know. Watermelon contains chemicals that speed up the body’s production of tryptophan and serotonin, both brain compounds that trigger sleep. Australian researchers have found that just one cup of the juicy favorite before bedtime can lull you to sleep twice as fast as those who don’t eat it. The picnic staple is also 90% water which hydrates, refreshes, and sends an “I’m full” signal to your brain so you think twice about that second helping of pie.
4. Carrots – Beauty Treatment
We have long known some of the powerful benefits of eating carrots. I, for one, love the taste and the satisfying crunchiness of the veggie; in salads, juiced, and just by themselves raw are several ways I enjoy them. Recently, I found another benefit besides the carotenoids (metabolic precursors to vitamin A) and the generous supply of beta-carotene; carrots are fabulous for topical beauty treatments. For an at home facial, try the following recipe for supple, glowing skin.
Carrot-Honey Mask (Normal to Oily Skin)
2-3 large carrots,
4 1/2 Tablespoons of honey
Cook the carrots and mash together with the honey. Gently apply to dry face; wait 10 minutes.Rinse with warm water. For those of you who prefer to buy your products, try Yes To Carrots Night Moisturizing Cream, Dry to Sensitive Skin, , 1.7-Ounce Boxes (Pack of 2).
5. Plums – Get Bikini Ready
With just one plum a day you can shrink those spider veins and flush out unwanted fat. According to studies, the high levels of vitamin K help produce a clotting agent called thrombin that heals and fades bruises and varicose veins. And, a high content of vitamin C helps your body to digest food more quickly so fats and toxins don’t even get the chance to absorb. Sounds like a winning combo for a sexy bikini body-or at least one that looks better in summer apparel.
Next time you go shopping pick up some or all of these seasonal foods for a nutritional boost that will make you healthy and beautiful from the inside out. I hope you have a wonderful summer! Be well.
Berry & Banana Smoothie.
French toast with berries.
Raw Triple Berry Crisp
Yield : 6-8 servings
- 1.5 containers strawberries (about 22 ounces)
- 2 small containers blueberries (6 ounces each)
- 1 small container raspberries
- 1 Tablespoon maple syrup (use agave, if you want it raw)
- 1 cup raw walnuts
- 1 cup raw pecans
- 1/4 cup uncooked rolled oats
- 2 Tablespoon maple syrup
- 1/4 tsp kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
1. Wash and slice all strawberries into bite sized pieces. In a large bowl, mix the sliced strawberries, and other washed berries. Toss with maple syrup or agave nectar.
2. Prepare the topping in a food processor by pulsing all ingredients until just mixed. You want to leave this mixture very chunky, so be sure not to over process.
3. In a 1.4 litre (1.5 quart) casserole dish, add most of the berry mixture, leaving a few tablespoons or so. Spread evenly. Now add most of the topping over top of the berries, reserving a few tablespoons. Now sprinkle on the remaining berries, and finally the rest of the topping. Serve immediately, or chill for 1 hour.
Note: This raw crisp does not keep in the fridge overnight as it gets very watery. Be sure to mix just prior to serving.
Give your body a boost.