Living younger with antioxidant berries
Antioxidants are molecular substances keep free radical cells under control by inhibiting oxidation of other molecules.
Free radicals are byproducts of metabolism. A small number of these by-products is essential in the body because they defend against bacteria. Excessive amounts, on the other hand, damage cells. In essence, antioxidants are compounds that delay or stop the damage of cells.
How antioxidants help us
Antioxidants prevent the formation of free radicals and stop the oxidation process. Also, they stop existing free radical cells from stealing electrons from new cells. They achieve this by donating their electrons to free radical cells. In doing so, they complete the structure of these cells. Most importantly, antioxidants repair the damage done by free radical cells during oxidation.
Benefits of berries
Berries are the number one sources of antioxidants. They contain all the nutrients that are packed with antioxidants. Berries have Vitamins E, C, and A. In addition to these, they have flavonoids, lycopene, selenium, EGCG, and lignan which are all powerful antioxidants. What are the benefits of berries?
- Skin benefits
Consumption of berries helps to keep one’s skin healthy and revitalized. Berries help to fight skin conditions such as acne. Also, they prevent fast aging of the skin by minimizing the number of free radicals present in the body. Berries have a high water content which keeps the skin moisturized.
- Hair benefits
Some berries such as blueberries have proanthocyanidins which stimulate the growth of hair by accelerating the transition from telogen to anagen. Berries are known to contain Vitamin B12 which prevent premature greying.
- Weight loss benefits
Berries are rich in fibre, and they have low calories. This makes them the best snack to have between meals when one wants to lose weight. The fibres in berries are soluble. Hence, they slow down digestion making you feel full for a long time.
- Collagen synthesis
Free radical cells lead to accumulation of toxic substances in the body, such as uric acid. These substances lead to degeneration of muscles, tissues, and drying up of joint fluid. A single serving of berries per day dramatically improves the synthesis of collagen and elastin tissue which make up connective tissue. Improved collagen synthesis strengthens muscles and skin; in addition to this, it fastens wound healing. Eating berries makes your skin healthier and stronger even as you grow old.
Types of berries
These berries grow in the wild and under cultivation. They do well in many regions around the world. Mulberries can be white, black, purple, or red.
Nutrition benefits of mulberry
This type of berries contains Vitamin C, which is aids collagen synthesis and is an excellent source of antioxidants. They have phytonutrient compounds such as polyphenol pigment and minerals. They also contain flavonoids and anthocyanins which prevent cancer, inflammation, aging, bacterial infections, and diabetes.
Per 100 grams, mulberries have:
- Fat 0%
- Sodium 0%
- Potassium 5%
- Magnesium 4%
- Calcium 3%
- Carbohydrate 3%
- Dietary fibre 6%
- Sugar 8g
- Protein 2%
- Iron 10%
- Vitamin C 60%
- Vitamin B-6 5%
- Acai berries
These berries are packed with vitamins, fibre, amino acids, essential fatty acids, minerals, and antioxidants.
Nutrition benefits of acai berries
Acai berries have essential fatty acids that are similar to those found in olive oil. Healthy fats help maintain a healthy heart and nervous system. Amino acids found in acai berries aid in muscle performance and energy production. Their high fibre content eases digestion and supports a healthy cardiovascular system.
Per 100 gram serving, these berries have:
- 247 calories
- 26g carbohydrates
- 4g proteins
- 16g fats
- 52g fibre
They also have calcium, which is good for the bones, Vitamin A, and antioxidants.
These are the kings of berries. They contain the highest nutrition and antioxidant values.
Nutrition benefits of blueberries
According to research by the Brown Cancer Centre at the University of Louisville, blueberry extract reduces the growth of stomach, prostate, intestine, and breast cancer cells. These berries satisfy up to 14% of one’s daily fibre need in one serving. The high fibre speeds up weight loss. Blueberries are packed with antioxidants which increase brain performance by preventing free radical cells from killing brain cells.
Like blueberries, strawberries improve the immune system and prevent certain types of cancer. Due to their richness in flavour, taste, and colour, they are used in medicine and processed food items.
Nutrition benefits of strawberries
Strawberries are rich in antioxidants, polyphenols, vitamins, minerals, dietary fibre.
The antioxidants found in these berries (flavonoids, phenolic phytochemicals, and ellagic acid) prevent eye problems that are caused by the presence of free radical cells. These berries contain Vitamin C which aside from boosting immunity, acts as an antioxidant too. One serving of strawberries has 150%of one’s daily Vitamin C requirement.
Important antioxidants to living younger.
Berries contain important vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. As it is said, one serving of berries a day removes “rust” from joints. This is because the antioxidants found in berries aid collagen synthesis. Antioxidants increase collagen and elastin in one’s body by fighting the free radical cells that deplete these two proteins. Improved collagen synthesis gives you stronger muscles. It also prevents drying up of bones and keeps skin firm and tight.