101 Tips for Building Brain Power-#4 Eat Your Blueberries (Recipes Included)
This one’s easy! Eat blueberries! These little purple bundles of sweetness are the ultimate brain food. One cup a day gives your brain the nutrients it needs to grow new cells! This berry is truly the ‘brain berry’. According to a USDA and Tufts University study, blueberries can slow and even reverse age-related brain decline, improve short-term memory and help reverse age-related loss of balance. No small feat for a little blue berry.
Blueberries are a top source of the antioxidant phytonutrient called anthocyanins. This group of antioxidants has been used, traditionally, for its anti-cancer properties, but now research shows they benefit the brain as well. An added bonus is they are low on the glycemic index so you don’t have to worry about sugar spikes when you eat your cup a day.
It gets better! In patients with Alzheimer’s blueberries can actually help improve cell to cell signaling and therefore enhance memory and learning. They also have anti-inflammatory effects, which can also help improve brain function.
Stroke is the leading cause of adult disability in North America and the third leading killer. It can be devastating for the individual and their families, robbing them of independence and dignity. The most common cause of stroke is from a blockage of an artery leading to the brain. A blockage can be caused by plaque building up in small blood vessels that eventually rupture and form blood clots. Bring in the mighty and heroic blueberry! Its array of phytonutrients can strengthen blood vessel walls and prevent the build up of plaque.
All it takes is a cup a day. If you don’t want to eat the whole fruit every day, just drink a cup of fresh juice, you’ll get the same benefits.
Here are some other ways of adding blueberries to your diet:
Hazelnut Blueberry Smoothie
My morning meal.
1 cup partially thawed blueberries
½ small banana
½ cup yoghurt or rice milk
1 scoop Greens First
Put hazelnuts and rice milk or yoghurt in blender. Set on high and process until hazelnuts are finely ground. Alternatively, you can grind hazelnuts in a coffee grinder first and then blend with yoghurt or rice milk.
Add Greens First, blueberries and banana. Process until smooth and enjoy.
Blueberry Ice Cream
At a dinner party I served this dish and everyone was amazed that it was only one ingredient! Blueberries!
Put frozen blueberries through a champion juicer with the nut butter screen. For added creaminess add a frozen banana.
Honestly, you can’t get any simpler than this.
Plant some blueberry bushes, at least three for cross-pollination purposes. They are low maintenance, fast growing, and nothing tastes better than a blueberry picked fresh from the bush. I’ve taken up most of my lawn and planted blueberries. My kids graze in the summer, the chickens eat the fallen ones and the dogs get them blended and dried with salmon. MMMM!
Check out more information about blueberries and other superfoods at http://www.thehealingkitchen.ca
How do you eat your blueberries?