Blueberries - What Your Mother Didn't Tell You

Blackberries - Superstar Health Food
Blackberries - Superstar Health Food | Source

Love Your Blueberries - Love Your Body

Healthcare for your whole body.  "A cup-a-day keeps the doctor bills away."  *Audrey hunt
Healthcare for your whole body. "A cup-a-day keeps the doctor bills away." *Audrey hunt | Source

7 Incredible Benefits of Blueberries - The Superstar of Nutrition

Hold on to your hat - you're about to discover a health habit your mother never told you about!

Blueberries. This small round fruit with blue, purple or blackish skin are loaded with vitamin C, fiber, manganese and a whole lot more. There are plenty of reasons your body will thank you for adding blueberries to your diet. Optimal health is one and here are 7 more:

  • Regulates the Blood Sugar - Recent studies show that type 2 diabetes participants, who eat at least 3 servings of low-GI fruits each day, show significant improvement in the regulation of blood sugar over a three month period of time. I'm type 2 diabetic and can vouch for this.
  • Improves Cardiovascular (heart) - I wish my brother new that consuming just 1-2 cups of blueberries each day improves blood fat balances and protects the cells lining the blood vessel walls. And there's more. Just listen to the next benefit.
  • Blood Pressure - Once you start eating blueberries (daily) you may see a reduction in both your systolic and diastolic blood pressures. A group of my friends did!
  • Antioxidants - You're going to get antioxidant support for the whole body - This means that muscle damage, (the kind that follows strenuous exercise) can be reduced. Even protection for the nervous system from oxidative stress has been discovered. Imagine!
  • Cognitive benefits - Cognitive functioning including memory may slow down in older folks according to recent studies. (This happened with my sister.) This is reason enough for aging adults to increase their intake of blueberries right?
  • Anti-cancer benefits - This one touches close to home with me. Having lost my mother to breast cancer, my son (in the prime of life) to testicular cancer, and my best friend to colon cancer, I wish this information would have been available years ago. Perhaps it may have helped save lives. (I realize that other factors are involved.) More research is being done every day on the benefits of blueberries and the potential ability to reduce the risk of some forms of cancer.
  • Eye health - Blueberries help to protect the eyes from such diseases as cataracts (mine were removed) and glaucoma. Foods high in phytonutrient antioxidants are being studied for their ability to help protect the retina from oxygen damage. Blueberries are high in phytonutrients. Just look at the list below - it's altogether amazing!

Helpful Tip

When buying blueberries stick with plump, firm, dry ones making sure the skin is smooth..

What Are Phytonutrients?

Blueberries are filled with Phytonutrients .What are Phytonutrients? According to Web MD:

" Plant foods contain thousands of natural chemicals. These are called phytonutrients or phytochemicals."Phyto" refers to the Greek word for plant. These chemicals help protect plants from germs, fungi, bugs, and other threats.

Fruits and vegetables contain phytonutrients. Other plant-based foods also contain phytonutrients, such as:

  • Whole grains
  • Nuts
  • Beans
  • Tea"

Thanks Web MD.

Phytonutrients function both as anti-inflammatory and antioxidants in the body.

The list of phytonutrients is a long one. I've decided to keep the list short while giving you a brief description of the following:

  • Anthocyanins - This is what the Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology describe this phytonutrient (in a nut shell.) "Anthocyanins are members of the flavonoid group of phytochemicals, a group predominant in teas, honey, wines, fruits, vegetables, nuts, olive oil, cocoa, and cereals.
  • Flavinoids - Used for anti-cancer, anti-oxidant, anti-inflammitory, anti-viral, allergy relief.)
  • Resveratrol (produced by the plant as a defense against disease.) Foods such as grapes, blueberries, rasberries and mulberries contain resveratrol.
  • Ellagic acids - You'll get plenty of this antioxidant in cranberries, blueberries, blackberries, pecans, pomegranates, strawberries, walnuts, grapes and peaches.
  • Alkaloids - Well-known alkaloids include morphine, quinine, ephedrine, nicotine, and strychnine.
  • Carotenoids - These are the colorful plant pigment found in fruits and vegetables providing the body with powerful antioxidants.
  • Coumestans - This is an estrogen-like substance made by some plants and may have anticancer effects.
  • Flavan3 OLS - Found in cocoa and chocolate.
  • Lignans (Silymarin - From the milk thistle plant, helps protect the liver by the growth of new liver cells.)

A few months ago I was diagnosed with high liver enzymes - no, I'm not a drinker. I started a regimen of Silymarin (milk thistle) and by the time my next doctor visit was due; my enzymes were perfectly normal.

Am I a believer? You bet!

Significant Information!

Blueberry Smoothie - You're Gonna' Love The Taste

You must love blueberries or you wouldn't be here. Or maybe you're not crazy about these purple little goodies, but you've heard they're good for you, so a smoothie is worth trying. And you're also looking for a recipe that isn't loaded with sugar and other chemicals.

Good for you. You've come to the right place. I'm going to share with you my favorite healthy, easy to make, skinny blueberry drink. It's so delicious that your friends and family will be asking for seconds.

So if you're looking for the ultimate, healthy, great-tasting smoothie look no further.

Blueberry Smoothie

Packed with nutrition this blueberry smoothie is satisfying and delicious.
Packed with nutrition this blueberry smoothie is satisfying and delicious. | Source

Ingredients For This Mouth-Watering Smoothie

All you need to whip up this blueberry smoothie will be:

1 cup organic fresh blueberries (frozen are ok too)

1/4 tsp. flaxseeds

1/4 tsp. chia seeds

1 cup unsweetened vanilla flavor almond milk

1 - 2 packets of stevia (sweeten to taste)

5 - 8 ice cubes (add more to thicken)

1/2 cup chocolate protein powder

If you're not watching your weight, and if you're fortunate enough not to have type2 diabetes, you may use sugar in place of stevia.

According to the latest studies - mixing blueberries with milk is a no-no. According to a study in the March 15, 2009 journal Free Radical Biology & Medicine, ingesting blueberries with milk impairs the antioxidant properties of the blueberries

I've included a link below in the event you'd like to read more about this.


Time To Think About A New Blender?

For a Super-Quick Mix Here's What To Do

This is so easy even the kids will love this part:

  1. Clean and wash berries and be gentle about it.
  2. Combine all ingredients into a blender. ( But hold the ice for a second. Add your ice cubes one-at-a-time blending before adding the next one.)
  3. Blend slowly adding desired amount of ice cubes until desired thickness is reached.
  4. Pour into frosty-cold mugs or drinking glasses.
  5. Enjoy!

Get a Load Of The Nutrition Value In This Blueberry Smoothie

Serving size depending on thickness: Serves 1 or 2

  • Calories: 120
  • Fat 3 g (good fat)
  • Fiber 16 g
  • Protein 10 g

One of the benefits of making your own smoothie is how you can add just about anything of nutritional value. And smoothies are a great meal replacement too.

Healthy Nutritious Delicious Smoothies

Even the pickiest eaters won't guess how nutritious a sumptuous, frosty smoothie can be.
Even the pickiest eaters won't guess how nutritious a sumptuous, frosty smoothie can be. | Source

Here's A Choice Blueberry Tip

To keep your heart healthy be sure to include blueberries in your diet three to four times a week. That's right! You only need 148.00 grams (one cup). Add a few to your morning cereal or pop a couple right in your mouth, frozen, directly from your freezer. Kids love them this way.

Unusual Facts About Blueberries

Do you know?

  • Early colonists made gray paint out of blueberries by boiling them in milk.
  • The blueberry industry of North America ships over 500 metric tons of fresh berries to Japan each year and over 100 metric tons to Iceland
  • Blueberries grow best in acidic soil at a pH of four to five and make a good container plant.
  • Native Americans once called them "star berries,"
  • Blueberries are one of the only natural foods that are truly blue in color
  • blueberries rank only second to strawberries in popularity of berries
  • Organically grown blueberries turned out to have significantly higher concentrations of total phenol antioxidants and total anthocyanin antioxidants than conventionally grown blueberries, as well as significantly higher total antioxidant capacity.
  • In July 2003 the United States Department of Agriculture proclaimed that July is National Blueberry Month in the USA!

Washing Blueberries

Only wash blueberries just before eating to avoid early mold.

In Closing -

We, alone. are responsible for our health. We know our bodies better than anyone. Our quality of life absolutely depends on our health. Today more than ever it is up to each one of us to take command of our vessel, our body, and make the healthy life-style changes needed.

The health care system is not what it once was (understatement) and a topic for another time. With environmental problems and processed food loaded with chemicals - you and I must take a stand - and with all the passion we can muster up, treat our bodies with love and respect.

  • Question your doctor and when needed get a second opinion.
  • Get regular check-ups.
  • See your dentist regularly.
  • Check your prescriptions and if in doubt ask.
  • Eat a healthy diet - avoid sugar as it depletes essential minerals. Studies have shown that sugar increases the rate of calcium excretion. This can throw off the calcium-magnesium ratio and the calcium-phosphorus ratio that your body needs
  • Move your body. As the Nike commercial states, "Just Do It!"
  • Increase healthy, organic fruits and vegetables - especially blueberries. But do not eat these berries with milk including yogurt. Remember the video above.
  • Love you. Love the person you are. Always love and forgive yourself. You are a diamond.

Thank you for being here. I would love to hear your thoughts and concerns. The comment section below is important to me. I read each comment.

Good health is your birthright.

vocalcoach

Disclaimer

The information provided in this hub is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult your physician, or health care provider before taking any home remedies or supplements

How Much Do You Like Blueberries?

Do You Include Blueberries In Your Diet?

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© 2016 Audrey Hunt

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Comments 29 comments

diogenes profile image

diogenes 7 months ago from UK and Mexico

Hi Audrey: I eat maybe 2 pounds of blueberries every week! Love them with cereal or just by themselves as a TV snack. They are so convenient, too. Just tip a few into the collander, wash under tap, and enjoy! I had no idea they were as beneficial as you point out although I feel well these days (I am Type 2 diabetic on insulin). No wonder bears do so well on these and other berries they stuff down before hibernating!

Great hub that hopefully has hubbers and other readers eating more blueberries.

Bob


Genna East profile image

Genna East 7 months ago from Massachusetts, USA

Audrey, I love blueberries...they are my favorites. In cereal, with a little low-fat milk, or just plain, nothing beats the rich flavor that bursts in your mouth when eating these delicious gifts from nature. And as you noted so well, they are incredibly healthy. Excellent hub, and one that should be read by all. :-)


billybuc profile image

billybuc 7 months ago from Olympia, WA

Blueberry muffins and blueberry smoothies.....heaven on earth!!!!!

Happy Sunday my friend, and blessings to you always!


fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 7 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

Such a massive amount of great info about a teeny berry!! YUM...Buleberries. Funny you should mention blueberries & mothers in your title. My Mother LOVED blueberry anything and made BB muffins at least once a month. She'd go out to the farms where customers could "pick-their-own" & fill up at least 6 qt.-sized baskets.

They ARE loaded with so much "goodness" in terms of anti-occidents...

Thank you, lovely Miss Audrey for the education! Love, Paula


Reynold Jay profile image

Reynold Jay 7 months ago from Saginaw, Michigan

I'm convinced! One would never guess all the nutrition and benefits of eating blueberries. Well done, Audrey!


Rosie writes profile image

Rosie writes 7 months ago from Virginia

Audrey, love your information about blueberries. I once saw an interview with a woman who was very healthy and over 100 years old. They asked her what her secret was and she said she ate blueberries every day. Since then, I always say that blueberries will make you live longer. Like you, I have had close family members with breast cancer, colon cancer and other types of cancers as well. I believe in prevention and am learning as much as I can about nutrition. I am sharing what I learn in articles like yours.


Kiss andTales profile image

Kiss andTales 7 months ago

Thank you I am so happy you shared your hub on blueberries .

I believe that all plants have some wonderful healing agents. They all benifit us as humans the reason they are here with us. You bring out the wonderful things they do for us thank you for sharing.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 7 months ago from Southern Illinois

I have just recently started on a diet regiment that includes fax seed, prunes, grapes, oranges and walnuts. I have these daily for my snack. I will include blueberries. I am glucose intolerant. This snack diet has done wonders for the digestive track, and I have gained weight which I needed to do. Thanks for sharing this. I will share it also...


MsDora profile image

MsDora 7 months ago from The Caribbean

Yes, I love a blueberry smoothie. Thanks for sharing the nutritional facts and the recipe. You add some very powerful ingredients.


Perspycacious profile image

Perspycacious 7 months ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

Bury the blues with blueberries! Yeah!


Blond Logic profile image

Blond Logic 7 months ago from Brazil

I don't think I have seen blueberries where I live in Brazil. The information is fascinating though and they pack a punch. About your recipe for the smoothie, I always tr y and include flax seeds in mine. They help with menopausal symptoms.

Interesting hub.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 7 months ago from Southern Illinois

I meant to say flax seed, not fax seed....TYPO..


BlossomSB profile image

BlossomSB 7 months ago from Victoria, Australia

I love blueberries and sometimes have them with coconut cream. Now I'm wondering if they will counteract in the same way as milk. An interesting hub.


vocalcoach profile image

vocalcoach 7 months ago from Nashville Tn. Author

Diogenes

Living with diabetes and eating a healthy diet go hand-in-hand to avoid complications down the line. I watched my father lose his leg...

You are certainly taking care care of your body with all the blueberries you eat. Thank you Bob.


AliciaC profile image

AliciaC 7 months ago from British Columbia, Canada

I love blueberries and eat them often. Thanks for highlighting their great health benefits and for sharing the smoothie recipe, Audrey. I love the thought of combining blueberries and chocolate protein powder!


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 7 months ago from USA

I love blueberries. Gosh, those colonists using them with milk to make gray paint makes me think no wander they had such a tough time surviving!


Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 7 months ago from southern USA

Oh, I love, love, love blueberries!

I love to put them on oatmeal in the mornings. They are so divine. I knew they are so healthy, but did not know of all these health benefits you have highlighted here.

Your tip about not washing them until you're ready to eat them is very helpful to me, for I was clueless about that fact!

Thank you, sweet friend, for sharing this important information on making blueberries an important addition to our diets.

Peace and much love always

Sharing everywhere


vocalcoach profile image

vocalcoach 7 months ago from Nashville Tn. Author

Hi Genna

I recently found organic blueberries from Georgia here in one of our farmers markets. They were the best ever! A little pricey but oh what a treat! Thanks and good health to you.

Hi Bill

Is there anything better than hot blueberry muffins dripping with butter?

Thanks my friend.

Audrey

fpherj48

Hello precious Paula. I remember the days our whole family would get up early and go out and pick blueberries. Mom made her famous blueberry jam. We'd spread butter on our toast followed by mounds of her jam. We were pretty darn poor back then...but we didn't know it. :)

Reynold Jay

It's pretty amazing to find so much nutrition in these tiny, healthy morsels. I'm hoping blueberries will do as much for the outside of my body as the inside. :)

Rosie writes

I'm with you Rosie - prevention is the way to go. The older I get the harder I work at living a super-healthy lifestyle. Today I reached my 'google exercise goal' reaching my 100% for walking and burning 294 calories. What a great feeling!

Thanks Rosie

Kiss andTales

You are so right about the benefits of eating plants. The best nutrition comes from the ground. I love blueberries. I even add them to my spinach and kale salads. Thanks and good health to you my friend.


vocalcoach profile image

vocalcoach 7 months ago from Nashville Tn. Author

always exploring

Hello my friend. Sounds like you're being very good to your body and feeding it nutritious and healthy food. With the addition of blueberries, you're sure to outlive us all :)

MsDora

These lovely blueberries are a power house of nutrition. One reason I'm including them in my daily diet is for the prevention of dementia and alzheimer's. My sister is in the middle stages of this disease. Some recent research indicates blueberries may protect against this.

Thanks

Perspycacious

Yes! Bury the blues indeed! These nutritious morsels may do just that.

Blonde Logic

So you live in Brazil. Always wanted to visit this fascinating place. You mentioned flax seed and yes, this is another very healthy way to promote good health. Thanks.


RTalloni profile image

RTalloni 7 months ago from the short journey

Because they are so full of nutrients and they are unique in their color and because their taste is just amazing blueberries always make me smile. We are eating a new way–no carbs and fats together–and it's working out well. Blueberries are a free food, meaning they can be eaten any time. That was a key feature of this way of eating that made me want to try it.


vocalcoach profile image

vocalcoach 7 months ago from Nashville Tn. Author

BlossomSB

I would think coconut milk/cream is okay since it's not dairy. I personally know people who use coconut milk on their cereal with blueberries. Same with almond milk. Thanks.

FlourishAnyway

No kidding - can you imagine crushing enough blueberries to make paint? I wonder how they did this? Glad to hear you are a blueberry fan.

Stay healthy my friend.

Audrey

Faith Reaper

I, too add blueberries to my morning oatmeal. What a super-healthy combination! Lately I've been freezing my oatmeal in small containers. It's so convenient. I simply pull the container our of the freezer and place the frozen oatmeal into a bowl. Heat it about 2 minutes, stir, and heat it for 1 minute. Very handy. I actually lifted this idea from Trader Joes. They sell it frozen. :)

Love you my friend. Good Health to us both!

Audrey

RTalloni

What kind of food program are you on? Would it work for we vegans? I love that blueberries are a free food! That makes me smile! :)

Hi Alicia. Oh boy do I love combining blueberries and chocolate like you do! I buy my chocolate protein powder at Walmart. I'm diabetic so I watch my sugar and the protein powder is very low in sugar. I also like my smoothie nice and thick so I add plenty of ice and sometimes increase the protein powder. I often add stevia too.

Enjoy my friend!


Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 6 months ago from The Beautiful South

Wonder if blueberry preserves count? I do eat blueberries other ways too but most come from the preserves and being cooked probably are not as good. (Love the pies, too! lol)

I used to live where I could pick these myself all summer long...but your excellent piece here will have me eating fresh ones again. Thank you!


Peggy W profile image

Peggy W 6 months ago from Houston, Texas

We love blueberries and often eat it with Greek yogurt. Now I find out that is not the best combination from what you wrote and in viewing that video. Will do some additional research on that. Thanks for the heads up! Sharing.


vocalcoach profile image

vocalcoach 6 months ago from Nashville Tn. Author

Hi Peggy

Let me know what you find out about blueberries and yogurt. This has been one of my favorite combinations. I stopped after doing some research on this. Now I add blueberries to my salads and oatmeal. I would think almond milk would be ok. I'm lactose intolerant so I use almond milk instead of cow's milk and just love it! Thanks Peggy.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 6 months ago from Central Florida

I'm surprised to hear that blueberries shouldn't be eaten with milk. One of my favorite breakfasts (and I had it for lunch just before reading this post) is a cottage cheese parfait. I add blueberries and blackberries, cinnamon and chopped walnuts to a couple tablespoons of cottage cheese. It's quite yummy, filling and nutritious.

After reading this, I'll be upping my blueberry intake. Thanks for the awesome info, Audrey!


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 4 months ago from USA

This was worthy of a second visit. I've been making lots of mixed berry smoothies, including blueberries. They are one of my favorite berries, and I love jelly and jam, too.


vocalcoach profile image

vocalcoach 4 months ago from Nashville Tn. Author

Hello bravewarrior,

I, too was surprised to find that blueberries should not be eaten with milk. I spent a fair amount of time researching this claim and after doing so I'm convinced that it's true. The strange thing is, some of the healthiest breakfast cereals I see contain blueberries. Who can eat cereal without milk?

I miss you dear Sha and so happy to see you're back on HP again. Here's a big hug from me to you!

Audrey

FlourishAnyway

Very nice to see you again lovely lady! I love berry smoothies - all kinds of berries. My favorite sandwhich is is peanut butter and jelly/jam. :)

Thanks for being here.


vocalcoach profile image

vocalcoach 4 months ago from Nashville Tn. Author

Hi Jackie

I'd love to be able to pick my own berries - especially blueberries. Once in a great while we get an opportunity to pick blueberries here in Nashville at one of the farms. I missed it this summer. If you can manage just a handful of blueberries a few times a week you'll reap the benefits for sure.

Thanks Jackie!


tobusiness profile image

tobusiness 3 months ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

I love blueberries so much; I grow my own. Great hub, packed with useful information. I can personally vouch for the blueberry shakes; I practically force it down my husband's throat every morning. This hub is a must read. I'll be sharing.

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