Week 5 – Day 7

Beautiful strawberries.
Who can resist those luscious juicy morsels of red scrumptious delight? Fresh or frozen, strawberries offer a multitude of goodness to our body. They contain fistin, a flavanoid which has been shown to help improve brain power. Eating strawberries can help reduce belly fat, and can also reduce insulin spikes that may cause weight gain.

One serving of strawberries contains 51.5 mg of vitamin C—about half of your daily requirement according to Toronto-based registered dietitian Madeleine Edwards. Double a serving to one cup and get 100 percent. Vitamin C is a well-known immunity booster, as well as a powerful, fast-working antioxidant.

The antioxidant properties in strawberries may also help to prevent cataracts—the clouding over of the eye lens—which can lead to blindness in older age.

Researchers at the Clinical Nutrition and Risk Factor Modification Center in Toronto studied the effect of strawberries on a cholesterol-lowering diet and concluded that adding strawberries to the diet reduced oxidative damage, as well as blood lipids—both of which play a role in heart disease and diabetes.

One of my favorite strawberry benefit is the fact that antioxidants and phytochemicals found in strawberries may also help to reduce inflammation of the joints, which may cause arthritis and can also lead to heart disease. A study conducted by the Harvard School of Public Health shows that women who eat 16 or more strawberries per week are 14 percent less likely to have elevated levels of C-reactive protein (CRP)—an indication of inflammation in the body.

I personally enjoy strawberries year round. I prefer fresh ones, but in winter I’m happy to leverage frozen strawberries for my morning oatmeal or just as a snack.

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