Blueberries are packed with antioxidants and vitamin C with fresh tangy flavor that makes it one of the most popular summer treats of all time. They are sweet, succulent, full of nutrients, and can be eaten freshly picked. They contain a type of flavonoid known as anthocyanins, which are responsible for its blue hues and also numerous health benefits. Many studies have suggested that increasing consumption of plant foods like blueberries decreases the risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease and overall mortality while promoting a healthy complexion and hair, increased energy, and overall lower weight.
While awareness about the benefits of blueberries in warding off cancer and lowering the risk of heart disease is widespread, very few people are aware of its advantages of reverting ageing, improving vision and memory, new research at University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, has found.
The researchers wanted to determine how much consumers know about blueberry health benefits and see if there is a knowledge gap with blueberry health benefits among demographic groups. They surveyed more than 2,000 people in 31 US states to see what they know about the health benefits of blueberries.
The researchers found that most people were aware of the benefits of blueberries in cancer prevention and lowering the risk of heart disease but they are less aware of the advantages of reverting aging, improving vision and memory. The study also revealed that low-income populations tend to know less about blueberry health benefits
“People being more familiar with blueberries as deterrents for cancer and heart disease may be related to the high general awareness of these two diseases,” said lead researcher Shuyang Qu, doctoral student in agricultural education and communication, in a statement. “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,” Qu noted.
According to Delhi based nutritionist Anshul Jaibharat, “Very rarely available, this berry has a ton of benefits. The primary one being the antioxidants present in these little berries. This delays the process of degeneration of nerve cells, which helps our memory. It also prevents the damage to our eyes caused by pollution and dust. A handful of them is good per day. Try and consume frozen blueberries if fresh ones aren’t available and avoid the canned jams as they have added sugar in them. Incorporate them in your meal by adding them to salads or by making a smoothie out of them.”