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They are a force to be reckoned with in the food kingdom. Blueberries are packed with antioxidants so powerful that they are able to prevent diseases and have unique phenol-like antioxidants. Blueberries are a very good source of vitamin K, vitamin C and manganese. Blueberries are also a good source of fiber and copper. Buyers know some of the advantages blueberries provide, but researchers are finding more benefits. The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences found in a study: "The fact that cancer and heart diseases are the leading causes of death in America may have led to more personal research related to preventing the diseases, leading to the respondents being exposed to these findings more than other benefits." Blueberries can be an effective alternative to medications because some drugs can produce powerful side-effects.   Incorporating blueberries will help you maintain your overall health and keep your immune system robust. Here are 7 reasons blueberries are the hottest fruit around.

They contain epicatechin.

Blueberries contain epicatechin, a powerful antioxidant that can help liver function and help it detox. Studies also showed that epicatechin and other flavonoids may play a protective role on the "Osmotic fragility of cells, similar to that of insulin. The mechanism of action of epicatechin is different to that of insulin and remains speculative. In diabetic red blood cells, epicatechin causes an increase in acetylcholinesterase activity," phytochemicals.com reported. The antioxidant also may reduce the risks of strokes and reduce the risks of other heart problems.

They improve memory.

Blueberries may help people cognitively, according to research. "These preliminary memory findings are encouraging and suggest that consistent supplementation with blueberries may offer an approach to forestall or mitigate neurodegeneration," said a report by the American Chemical Society. Another study followed 9 elderly participants with cognitive impairment as they drank blueberry juice for 12 weeks. This resulted in the forestalling of neurodegeneration.

They may protect against Alzheimer’s disease.

About 36 million people suffer from Alzheimer's disease that slowly alters the memory, behavior and kills more people than breast cancer, according to Medical News Today. Scientists believe that Alzheimer's starts when abnormal brain structures of plaques and tangles start to kill off nerve cells, causing memory loss. Blueberries could protect against Alzheimer’s disease as human research and animal studies suggested that "Blueberries may improve cognition, possibly due to the effects of anthocyanins, antioxidant pigments responsible for the berries’ health benefits," Dr. Andrew Weil wrote.

They protect against bladder infections.

Blueberries are just as good as cranberries to prevent bladder infections because they contain anti-adhesives, which help inhibit bacteria like Escherichia coli from growing on the wall of the bladder. They may also be good to prevent urinary tract infections because they are so rich in vitamin C. "The extra fluids provided by blueberry juice may also be effective when it comes to flushing bacteria from the urinary tract," livestrong.com reported. The high amount of vitamin C can stunt the growth of bacteria in the urinary tract as well.

They may protect muscles after working out.

Consuming blueberries can reduce the damage to the muscles after a workout and could improve recovery time. Some researchers believe that the antioxidants in blueberries may reduce muscle fatigue by absorbing the free radicals that muscles can produce during exercise. Also, blueberries are "Naturally low in fat and sodium, which makes them a healthy choice for energy and muscle repair. In addition, blueberries contain one gram of fiber per serving," livestrong.com added.

They are a super vitamin.

Blueberries could be considered a multi-vitamin! They have vitamin A, vitamin B, vitamin C and vitamin E. Vitamin A fights free-radicals caused by oxidation and may help with wrinkles. Vitamin B increases blood circulation and it is good for the scalp, skin and helps with hair growth. We mentioned that the vitamin C found in blueberries is great against bigger health problems like bladder infections and urinary tract infections, but they fight aging and fight the effects of stress. Blueberries also have vitamin E, that has all sorts of great benefits like reducing the risks of cancer.

They contain pterostilbene.

Pterostilbene is an antioxidant found in blueberries and it can protect the body against colorectal cancer. The pterostilbene found in blueberries can also help cognition, reduce cholesterol and can fight aging. "Blueberry extract has been proven to inhibit the growth of breast cancer cells and was also found to decrease particular enzymes associated with the spread of cancer," author Ranya Elguendy wrote. The chemical compounds of pterostilbene are closely related to resveratrol, another powerful antioxidant. The antioxidant activity of pterostilbene has been linked in "Anticarcinogenesis, modulation of neurological disease, anti-inflammation, attenuation of vascular disease, and amelioration of diabetes," nlm.nih.gov shared.

According to the North American Blueberry Council, blueberries are a native American species. We produce 90 percent of the world’s blueberries. The harvest of blueberries starts from April through October, but the harvest peaks in July. There are plenty of opportunities to buy blueberries and use them as part of your heath regimen. No wonder they are one of the hottest fruits available to us.

 

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