Blueberry is a fruit whose healing properties should be appreciated by people who want to have falcon eyesight. Apparently, during World War II, British Royal Air Force pilots ate blueberries to improve night vision. This fruit is also a good way for memory problems. Check how healthy the blueberry is, how many calories it has and try the dessert recipe with these delicious fruits.
Blueberries – overview
Blueberry or Vaccinium corymbosum, is a fruit whose healing properties began to be appreciated in the 20th century – in which the cultivation of these fruits began.
Blueberries belong to the same family as blackberries. Blueberries are not only bigger and sweeter in taste than their cousins, but also are more effective in the prevention of some cancers. What other properties does blueberry have?
American blueberry – properties
Blueberry can improve memory – argue scientists from two British universities – University of Reading and Penninsula Medical School – in the scientific magazine ‘Free Radical Biology and Medicine’
in my opinion, this is due to flavonoids, which reverse age-related memory loss. They came to such conclusions after an experiment lasting 12 weeks, during which scientists supplemented the diet of the participants of the experiment with blueberries.
After just three weeks, they noticed an improvement in their memory and it was getting better over time. The precise mechanisms of action of the substances contained in the fruit have not been found, but researchers believe that they improve existing connections in the brain, improve communication between cells and stimulate neuronal regeneration.
Blueberry can prevent hypertension, according to researchers from the University of East Anglia (UK) and Harvard University (USA) in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
They observed that people consuming a portion of blueberries at least once a week by 10 per cent. they suffer from hypertension less often. This is due to the anthocyanins contained in the blueberry fruit, a chemical compound from the flavonoid group – the researchers argue. The researchers examined 134,000 women and 47,000 men.
At the time the study began, none of the subjects had hypertension. Every two years, the state of health was assessed, and every four – the diet. Hypertension developed in 35,000 people.
Highbush blueberry contains large amounts of phytoestrogen, a plant hormone that effectively blocks the action of enzymes that contribute to the formation of so-called hormone-dependent cancers, e.g. some breast cancers.
Ellagic acid contained in blueberries has similar anti-cancer properties.
Research conducted by Japanese scientists shows that the fruit of blueberry, specifically one of its varieties – blueberry (V. ashei), inhibits the replication of the hepatitis C virus, and thus prevents the development of liver cirrhosis and protects hepatocytes (cells the liver).
Researchers at the University of Miyazaki concluded that proanthocyanidin found in blueberry leaves can slow down the replication of HCV, which is located in the liver.
Blueberry is also used to treat eye conditions such as cataracts and macular degeneration. Apparently, during World War II, British Royal Air Force pilots ate blueberries to improve night vision.
Blueberry fruits contain tannins that have antibacterial properties – they destroy, among others harmful E. Coli strains.
In addition, fibre and antioxidants contained in blueberry are involved in the removal of toxins and harmful metabolic products from the body.
Blueberries – nutritrional values
In 100 g:
- Vitamin C – 9.7 mg
- Tiamine – 0.037 mg
- Riboflavin – 0.0416 mg
- Niacin – 0.418 mg
- Vitamin B6 – 0.052 mg
- Folic acid – 6 µg
- Vitamin A – 54 IU
- Vitamin E – 0.57 mg
- Vitamin K – 19.3 μg
- Calcium – 6 mg
- Iron – 0.28 mg
- Magnesium – 6 mg
- Phosphorus – 12 mg
- Potassium – 77 mg
- Sodium – 1 mg
- Zinc – 0.16 mg
Blueberries – selection and storage
Fresh blueberries should be intensively blue, covered with whitish, chalky waxy coating. Check that the fruit is not moist, mouldy or rotten. Frozen blueberries should be loose. If they are combined into one mass, it is likely to be said that they were already thawed and re-frozen.
Blueberries can be stored in the fridge for up to seven days. Blueberries that are not consumed immediately should not be washed.
To freeze blueberries, lay unwashed on parchment, put in the freezer, and when they freeze, put into a plastic bag. In this way, they can be stored for a year.
American blueberry – use in the kitchen
Fresh blueberries should be rinsed with lukewarm water and dried gently. Frozen blueberries do not have to be washed. It is enough to thaw them at room temperature and add to uncooked dishes.
Before serving fresh blueberries for raw dough, first sprinkle them with flour so that they do not fall to the bottom. Blueberries can be added to a salad or cereal, eat alone or a cake can be made of them.