Eat The “Blues” for Better Health

by Donna Quirk, MBA RD LD
LMC Clinical Nutrition Manager

It’s July and blueberries are at their prime. I have made my first visit to a Lexington County blueberry farm to pick a bucket of one of the most nutritious and delicious foods we can eat.

Blueberries are a concentrated source of phytochemicals including anthrocyanins, proanthrocyanins, myricetin, quercentin, resvertol, and ellagic acid.

What does this mean for you and me? Blueberries have the ability to:
•Lower the risk of urinary tract infection
•Protect against cardiovascular disease
•Help reduce short-term memory loss and Alzheimer’s disease
•Fight inflammation
•Resist asthma
•Help to ease the symptoms of menopause
•Prevent cancer (especially colon, breast, and lung)
•Improve eye health
•Reduce the risk of osteoporosis
•Reduce blood clotting

In addition to phytochemicals, eating about 1 cup a day provides a good source of carbohydrates, fiber, vitamin C, vitamin E, beta-carotene, folic acid, iron, and potassium.

Eat blueberries as a snack, mixed in yogurt, with breakfast cereal, stirred into pancake or muffin batter, in a spinach salad, or baked in a fruit crumble. There are so many options!

For healthy blueberry recipes, click here.

To find a location near you to pick your own blueberries at farms in South Carolina, click here.

Hope to see you at the farm!

Reference: “Blueberries: Why Blue and Purple Foods Might Save Your Life.” RD411.com. February 2009. Accessed 7 July 2011.

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