Friday, July 26, 2013

Bubbly Bursting Blueberries

By Lisa VanWilliams

It's that time of year in New England to get out and pick some nice ripe blueberries. My husband and I are hoping to get out there with the kids this weekend or next weekend and do some picking!  Eaten raw, blueberries are one of the top antioxidants you can have. Antioxidants help protect your cells from being damaged by free radicals that can damage cells and cause diseases. Freezing the berries does not damage the antioxidants.

Health benefits include:

  • cardiovascular benefits
  • cognitive benefits - they might improve your memory
  • blood sugar benefits
  • eye health -helps protect from sunlight damage 
  • anti-cancer benefits
  • may help prevent degenerative diseases
  • may help prevent urinary tract infections

The US produces around 275 million pounds of blueberries every year which is more than half of the worlds production (550 million pounds grown annually worldwide).  Our distant neighbors in Maine produce the largest amount of lowbush blueberries in the world, and the wild blueberry is the official fruit of Maine.  There are two types of berry bushes - the wild ones are called "low bush" and the farmed berries are called "high bush".  Try to look for the organically grown ones because pesticide residues are bad !

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