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Blueberries: Health Benefits and Recipes

By Amy Silva

You can't talk about blueberries without mentioning they're a superfood. These small berries are packed with nutrients that may improve health and help ward off disease. They're great when eaten fresh but adding them to a fruit smoothie is a refreshing way to enjoy them and the health benefits without having to eat them plain. They can also be added to breakfast and snack foods such as oatmeal, muffins, pancakes, cereals and yogurt. Learn more about the potential perks of this superfood and try one of the recipes below for a new way to enjoy this fruit.

About Blueberries

Blueberries are related to cranberries and grow on bushes that are from 2 feet to 13 feet tall. The most popular species is the highbush blueberry, and it's grown in different states in the northern United States from Maine to Oregon. Different blueberries are grown in warmer temperatures in the south, with even more being grown around the world as they become more popular.

Health Benefits of Blueberries

Blueberries contain antioxidants and actually raise the body's antioxidant levels. They include important vitamins and minerals, such as Vitamin C, calcium, zinc, Vitamin K, potassium and manganese. They also contain fiber that may help regulate blood sugar in those with type 2 diabetes and could lower the risk of heart disease. A diet that includes an adequate amount of fiber can aid in weight reduction and weight management. It's possible blueberries can help the spread of certain cancers, such as lung and pancreatic cancers, among others.

Blueberry Smoothie Recipes

If you want a change from eating blueberries by the handful, consider making a smoothie. Here's a simple recipe for a fruit smoothie from food.com that makes two servings so you can share:

  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 2 frozen bananas
  • 1 cup yogurt
  • 1 cup milk

Blend all ingredients until lumps are gone. Feel free to add ice.

This recipe is from FoodNetwork.com and uses only four ingredients just as the first recipe, but this is for a single serving smoothie:

  • 1 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1cup low fat or nonfat milk
  •  1 cup nonfat yogurt
  • 1 tsp honey

Blend all ingredients until lumps are gone. Feel free to add ice.

Eating blueberries daily can have wonderful effects on your health. They're loaded with nutrients that help keep you healthy and may keep diseases away. Try experimenting with blueberries and other ingredients to make your new favorite fruit smoothie.

To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Baton Rouge, La.

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