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Berry Health Boost
Nature is a wondrous work of art with its dazzling array of colorful flowers, fruits and natural nourishment. The deep purple of Concord grapes and acai berries, the glowing crimson of raspberries and cranberries, the lovely red of pomegranates and sour cherries, the beautiful rich indigo of blueberries and bilberries.
This edible eye candy is way more than esthetically pleasing, though. It’s also bursting with delicious, health-supporting sustenance.
THE POWER OF COLOR
Over millennia, plants have developed an impressive system whereby they create their own natural protective compounds to safeguard and heal themselves against damage. Many of these protective compounds are found within their attractive colors. These hues not only protect the plants that formed them, but also have the remarkable potential to protect and heal us as well.
Research has shown that when we ingest these whole food pigments, or phytonutrients, they generously bestow numerous benefits to us – from heart health to brain wellness to skin tonicity and beyond.
RAINBOW OF PHYTONUTRIENTS
When it comes to our fruits and veggies, the common saying “variety is the spice of life” could more aptly be stated “variety is the health of life.” The rainbow of colors in our diet provides us with a diversity of phytonutrients that have the ability to boost our health and wellness. For example, the darkly pigmented phytonutrients that give many berries their rich colors are called anthocyanins. These powerful pigments are associated with heart and vessel health, skin and brain wellness, and more. The list of valuable phytonutrients goes on and on, each with their own profile of benefits including polyphenols, quercetin, catechins, salicylic acid, phytoestrogens, chlorogenic acid, ellagic acid, and countless others that are still being discovered and researched.
But there’s more to the berry story than their colorful beauty and nutritional prowess. The powerful health benefits of berries work synergistically and are far more effective when a full spectrum of fruits and berries are consumed together. In a study published in Nutrition, Metabolism and Cardiovascular Disease in August 2012, results indicated that the anthocyanins in berries had significant synergistic effects. It concluded that it was important to consume a wide array of berries and fruits not just one or two. The researchers themselves stated: “Incorporating plant-based foods rich in different anthocyanin compounds in the diet is likely to be more beneficial than consuming a single anthocyanin supplement.”
NOT ALL BERRIES ARE CREATED EQUAL
All of us are familiar with blueberries, raspberries, cranberries, and grapes. But did you know that the commercial varieties of these fruits are often sprayed with pesticides, fungicides, and other chemicals? In addition, they are hybridized for factory farming rather than for their phytonutrient-rich and health supporting contents. On top of that, commercial berries are usually picked long before peak ripeness and lose much of their nutritional potency during transport to your grocery store.
Certainly, eating these commercial berries is better than nothing when it comes to positively affecting our health. However, research and testing have shown over and over again that the most powerful nutritional profiles come from wild and heirloom varieties. This includes not only the berries we are most familiar with, but also some of the rare ones that most of us are not consuming on a regular basis like aronia, black currant, maqui, bilberry, lingonberry, and many others.
While we should all eat our berries, they are not always available year-round. To cover our bases, a colorfully powerful and delicious berry supplement like Organic Berry Power™ is a great way to pump up our nutrition all year long.
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