Berries are generally known to pack a punch of nutrition that is beneficial for the body, including being a go-to fruit for antioxidants which can lower the risk of cancer. Berries are like wonder fruits that can help to improve your skin, prevent diseases and even help you to lose weight, and most importantly, they taste great! Each type of berry is optimum for various functions, and in this article, we aim to cater the choice berry to your needs.
To keep your memory sharp
Berries carry many benefits and one of them includes keeping your memory sharp. Studies have shown that dark berries like blackberries and blueberries are rich sources of flavanoids that purportedly boost memory. Flavanoids are phytonutrients, plant chemicals that have powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory functions. Eating these berries can have beneficial effects on brain signalling pathways involved in inflammation and cell death, and can even contribute towards preventing age-related cognitive disorders like Alzheimer's disease and dementia.1
To reduce your blood pressure
Redcurrants are high in potassium content, which is essential to regulate blood pressure. One cup of redcurrant provides you with about 308mg out of the 2000mg of recommended potassium intake. Of course, some fresh fruits are hard to come by in Singapore, but fear not, dried redcurrants and redcurrant jam would work the same way, although with lower potassium content. If it helps, redcurrant jam tastes really good.
For an energy boost, especially for women
You might have heard about the power of goji berries in helping to maintain eye health because of the high levels of beta-carotene (higher than carrots!). Beta-carotene is converted into vitamin A in our bodies, which is essential for maintaining eye health and vision among other functions. However, the lesser known prowess of goji berries is that it has extremely high iron content, outdoing a combo of spinach and steak at per 100g each!
Iron is needed for blood production, and when your body is lacking iron, you may experience lower energy levels and even anemia. This is an especially important point for women because of the monthly blood loss, but the health benefits extends to everyone. Simply sprinkle some goji berries in your overnight oats or drop a tablespoon of it into your drinking water; taking care of your health doesn't have to be difficult.
For weight loss
If you have attended the talk that Cynthea, founder of Super Farmers, had at the Community Garden Festival last Sunday, you might have heard a testimonial from a lady that claimed mulberries had helped her to lose 5kg so far. Like other berries, the mulberry is a superfood that is rich in antioxidants, helps to prevent cancer and boosts immunity. It is also good for digestive health, and body metabolism, which aids weight loss. Mulberries contain nutrient elements that are essential for metabolism2. Being high in fibre content, mulberries also help with digestion and reduce bloating and cramps, and relieve constipation. As with most things and diets, results might not show immediately, and one should be consistent in including it in the diet in moderate amounts. But whether or not it will help you to lose 5kg, we will leave it to you to find out.
So far, you've learned about the benefits of the different types of berries. Now you can put the knowledge to good use and create recipes to introduce these berries into your diet. It can be as simple as blending some berries to drink as a morning smoothie, or even just beautifying your tea time pancake with a plethora of berries. Do you have a creative recipe that involves berries? Send your recipe to us if you'd like to share!
Written by Ange Chua
Edited by Cynthea Lam
Ange Chua is an aspiring bird-watcher trying to fix her black thumbs. When she's not writing, you'd find her drinking tea out of teacups or reading in bed with her dog. She thinks her spirit animal is an alpaca.