Okay, it's no news flash that blueberries are nutritious. They've been high on our suggested shopping list for years now, and they're easy to love. Lately, they've been getting more good press than a presidential contender (not hard!). If you were choosing just one fruit to eat every day, a big handful of blueberries -- fresh or frozen -- would be hard to beat. Why?
They make high blood pressure take a nosedive. Eating blueberries daily for just 8 weeks can drop your blood pressure by 4 to 6%. That's a lot. Even more impressive, it works on obese adults with metabolic syndrome, a scary group of risk factors that invites heart disease and diabetes. The "dose" to obtain the full benefits of blueberries: about 2 cups (fresh or frozen). By the way, blueberries aren't the only blood-pressure-friendly fruit. Cranberries, strawberries, and raspberries help, too.
They could cut your LDL (bad cholesterol) levels almost in half. Blueberry researchers -- yep, there are people who do nothing else -- believe the berries activate certain genes in your liver cells that help flush out lousy cholesterol by 44%. This happens in just 3 weeks in the lab. Pretty impressive, though more study is needed on the benefits of blueberries and LDL cholesterol.
Meanwhile, there's also evidence that eating blueberries every day helps keep your colon healthy and shields your brain against Alzheimer's and premature aging. (Here are even more ways to prevent Alzheimer’s disease.) What are you waiting for? Get your berries on!
A healthy diet is rich in foods with high nutritional value, providing your body with the vitamins, minerals and other food nutrients it needs to protect against disease and maintain a healthy weight. To identify healthy foods, it...'s important to read nutrition labels and know the source of your food. Products advertised as whole-grain, organic or fortified may not necessarily be healthy for you. Find out how to get the most health value from various fruits, nuts, spices, oils and vegetables -- and learn which types of red meat and processed foods to avoid -- with expert advice from Sharecare. More