Food FYI - Blueberries

I remember my first "encounter" with blueberries as a kid. I was watching "Willy Wonk and the Chocolate Factory." Violet Beauregarde.  The gum chewer who cannot resist a piece of gum that is a 3 course meal and then turns into a blueberry when she hits the dessert course.  At the end of her appearance in the movie, she's rolled away for juicing.  I was almost traumatized.  Emphasis on ALMOST.  Good thing for me I moved to Vancouver, British Columbia, and developed a true love for them.

Who knew that those tiny blue orbs would be so chock full of amazing things.  Did you know they are classified as a superfood?  Ye-yeah!  I love that because my kids love them as much as I do.  And when they go on sale this time of year, we stock up and have a true blueberry hoarding fest.  I make pies and pancakes, smoothies and salads.  And then I freeze the rest.  (Guess what, freezing blueberries doesn't do a thing to their nutritional value!)

Blueberries are ranked as one of the top foods for antioxidants.  How can you tell?  Their vibrant color!  Any fruit/vegi with vibrant colors is a great source of antioxidants.  But what is surprising about the blueberry research is its whole body relevance. It is not only the cardiovascular system that has been shown to have strengthened antioxidant status following consumption of blueberries, but virtually every body system studied to date! 

There is new evidence that damage to muscles, following overly taxing exercise, can be reduced through consumption of blueberries. There is also evidence that protection of the nervous system from oxidative stress can be accomplished by regular consumption of blueberries. These antioxidant-based protective effects have been shown in older adults at risk of neurodegenerative diseases, as well as in younger healthy adults and middle-aged obese adults. Antioxidant protection of the blood sugar regulatory system has also been demonstrated in blueberry intake studies, as has antioxidant protection of the digestive tract (especially with respect to the colon and its risk of cancer). It's this whole body antioxidant support that helps blueberries stand out as an amazing antioxidant fruit.

Recipes with Blueberries

BC Blueberry Pie
Blueberry Pancakes

Source: World's Healthiest Foods