Continuing with our superfoods series, we're shining a light on: blueberries--little sapphires of healthy goodness.
Blueberries have significant nutritional benefits--not to mention they're super tasty when in season! Packed with antioxidant phytonutrients called anthocyanidins, blueberries neutralize free radical damage to the collagen matrix (the ground substanec of all body tissues) of cells and tissues that can lead to cataracts, glaucoma, varicose veins, hemmorrhoids, peptic ulcers, heart disease, and cancer. Anthocyanins, the blue-red pigments found in blueberries, improve the integrity of support structures in the veins and entire vascular system. Anthocyanins have been shown to enhance the effects of vitamin C, improve capillary integrity, and stabilize the collagen matrix. For more specific details on the health benefits of blueberries, see here. Bottom line, though? They're mega good for you.
My favourite ways to enjoy blueberries? In pancakes for a weekend breakfast or brunch, with Greek yogurt and granola for an afternoon snack, or most commonly, in a morning smoothie!
Here's my favourite recipe:
Blueberry Protein Shake
1 cup unsweetened soy or almond milk
1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries
1 tbsp. ground flaxseed
1 scoop whey protein powder
drizzle of agave nectar, optional
1. In a blender, combine all ingredients. Blend until smooth. Pour and enjoy!
Makes 1 serving.
Try This: Off-season, blueberries can be quite pricey. Stock up on fresh blueberries when in season, clean and store in the freezer for later use. Or try purchasing frozen blueberries in your grocery's freezer aisle--when you're ready to use them, thaw for use in baked goods and sauces, or use them frozen in fruit smoothies.
information provided by world's healthiest foods
image via smoothie web