July is the month when blueberry harvesting season kicks into high gear. Celebrate National Blueberry Month by learning more about this small berry that packs a big nutritional punch.
Blueberries Are Rich in Anthocyanin
Anthocyanin is a compound found in some plants. It’s what gives berries and vegetables like red cabbage and eggplant their deep blue or purple coloring. Anthocyanins have been studied as a superfood as it’s believed they may help lower the risk of certain cancers, help with heart health, and benefit the immune system.
Get a Quarter of Your Daily Recommendation of Vitamin C
Get a quarter of your daily recommendation of vitamin C from a cup of blueberries. Vitamin C helps the body absorb iron. As an antioxidant, it’s also beneficial to the immune system. Vitamin C also helps collagen keep the skin supple.
Blueberries Help With Bone Strength
Blueberries are one fruit that contains calcium. They also have iron, magnesium, phosphorus, and zinc. These minerals all help you with bone strength. Iron and zinc also help keep the joints healthy.
Vitamin K is also found in blueberries. It’s important for helping the body absorb calcium, which can help lower the risk of osteoporosis and bone thinning. However, if your parents are on blood thinners, it’s worth talking to their doctor about foods they should avoid due to contraindications between vitamin K and blood thinners.
Lower Your Risk of Heart Disease
Eat blueberries and enjoy a quick boost of calcium, magnesium, and potassium. These minerals are essential for bone and heart health. They also help the body regulate blood pressure.
Blueberries also contain fiber. Fiber helps you feel fuller longer. It also helps with blood sugar and cholesterol levels, both of which benefit the heart.
They’re Low in Calories
One cup of fresh blueberries has a little over 50 calories. They’re a quick, healthy snack that you can eat on their own, add them to cereal, or put in a smoothie. Freeze blueberries and use them as ice cubes in a glass of water or seltzer.
Blueberries Contain Plenty of Water
A cup of fresh blueberries has a water content of approximately 85%. If your parents aren’t big on drinking water, snacking on blueberries slightly increases their water intake.
How well do your parents do with meal and snack preparation? Do they go for packaged foods or cook their own meals? It’s important to look at their dietary habits. If they’re sticking to pre-cooked meals, it’s a good time to talk about home care services like grocery shopping and meal preparation. They’ll have someone cook meals and join them for dinner, which increases the odds that they’ll eat healthier foods.