Strawberries: The Perfect Fruit To Add To Your Summer Meals
Written by: Brandi Monasco
There’s just something about those big, red, sweet and juicy little fruits. They go great in so many things: pancakes, smoothies, cereal, oatmeal, even salads! Strawberries are great frozen or fresh right off the plant.
In Asian countries, the strawberry is called “the queen of fruits.” This is because strawberries are packed with essential nutrients and provide amazing health benefits. According to The World’s Healthiest Foods, strawberries have been ranked 27th among the best foods in the U.S. to be full of antioxidant sources.
Here are some of the top benefits strawberries can provide for your body:
1. Strawberries Boost Your Immune System
They are loaded with antioxidants and are an excellent source of vitamin C. Vitamin C is essential for many functions of your body. In this case with the immune system, vitamin C stimulates the activity of white blood cells in order for them to act as a defence against foreign bodies that you may come into contact with.
2. Strawberries Reduce Your Risk Of Heart Disease
Strawberries contain flavonoids which are types of antioxidants that are found in many fruits and vegetables. Flavonoids are antioxidants that help protect your body from damage caused by free radicals.
A specific type of flavonoid that strawberries contain is called quercetin which acts as an anti-inflammatory and reduces your risk of atherosclerosis and helps in protecting you against damage that can be caused by cholesterol.
Strawberries also contain potassium which is essential in aiding with heart health. In one study, “participants who consumed 4069 mg of potassium per day had a 49% lower risk of death from ischemic heart disease compared with those who consumed less potassium (about 1000 mg per day).”
3. Strawberries Lower High Blood Pressure
Along with being rich in potassium, strawberries are also rich with magnesium. Both potassium and magnesium play an important role in lowering high blood pressure.
Potassium acts as a vasodilator, which expands the blood vessels and reduces blood pressure. Because the vessels are dilated, blood and oxygen is carried throughout your body more easily.
4. Strawberries Help Relieve Asthma And Allergies
Quercetin provides anti-inflammatory properties. Eating strawberries can potentially help improve allergy symptoms such as watery eyes and a runny nose. Studies also say that having a diet high in vitamin C (which strawberries are packed with) is the key to lowering asthma related incidences.
5. Strawberries Promote Optimal Eye Health
The antioxidants that are found in strawberries may also help prevent cataracts later on in life. The high vitamin C in strawberries protect your eyes from the free-radicals when you are exposed to the sun’s UV rays. Vitamin C also plays a role in strengthening your eye’s retina and cornea.
It’s actually pretty easy to incorporate strawberries into your daily diet. Try chopping up a few and throw them into your cereal or your oatmeal. They are great in smoothies too! In fact, here’s a fast and easy smoothie recipe for you:
Source, Source, Source, Source
- 4 large strawberries
- •¼ cup dairy free yogurt
- •1 cup orange juice
- •1 medium sized banana
- •½ tsp vanilla
- •1 tbsp honey
- Remove the stems and leaves from the strawberries and wash.
- Throw all of the ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth.
Brandi Monasco is a freelance writer, graphic designer and social media manager from Texas. She graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication Arts and has recently found a new love for health and nutrition.
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