As we get older, the internal DNA repair process loses its efficiency. Nutrition is an essential factor in aging, fighting diseases and increasing lifespan.
The researchers found that blueberries play an important role in longevity, by acting in depth on the DNA, helping to repair the damaged cells.
Blueberries are extremely valuable plant medicine products, used for therapeutic purposes since ancient times. They have antibacterial, vascular tonic, liver regenerating and hypoglycemic properties ,support heart and brain health .
A study by the US Department of Agriculture showed that these sweet fruits contain compounds that delay the aging process . The blueberry extract is so strong that it can increase the life span by 28% , the equivalent of 22 years.
Blueberries contain powerful antioxidants that support and stimulate the process of repairing human DNA and act directly on genes associated with aging, increasing longevity . They neutralize free radical damage, reduce oxidative stress at the deep level (on tissues and cells), and stimulate genes responsible for protecting cells.
The content in the repair and antioxidant compounds of blueberries is justified by the challenging environment and the harsh conditions in which these fruits grow: sandy soils, dry lands, at high altitudes.
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The regular consumption of blueberries can be an easy way to protect ourselves from premature aging and degenerative diseases. If besides blueberries, our diet will also contain pomegranates and green tea , the anti-aging effects will be even greater.
In addition to protecting the functions and tissues of the brain from premature aging , it repairs DNA damage , blueberries have outstanding anticancer potential , scientifically proven.
Here are just a few reasons why we deserve to make substantial supplies of blueberries in season. We can keep them in the freezer and use them in different recipes with therapeutic value: juices, smoothies or fruit salads.
If you have not managed to put blueberries over the winter, you can buy them frozen, in bags, from the big supermarkets. They are found in different combinations, with other antioxidant-rich berries, such as black and red currants, raspberries or strawberries.
Fast facts on blueberries:
Blueberries contain a plant compound called anthocyanin. This gives blueberries both their blue color and many of their health benefits.
Blueberries can help heart health, bone strength, skin health, blood pressure, diabetes management, cancer prevention, and mental health.
One cup of blueberries provides 24 percent of a person recommended daily allowance of vitamin C.
Use blueberries to top waffles, pancakes, yogurt, oatmeal, or cereal, blend them in a smoothie or syrup, or fold them into muffins and sweet breads.
People who use blood-thinners, such as warfarin, should speak to their doctor before increasing their intake of blueberries, as the high vitamin K content can affect blood clotting.
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1) Maintaining healthy bones
Blueberries contain iron, phosphorous, calcium, magnesium, manganese, zinc, and vitamin K. Each of these is a component of bone. Adequate intake of these minerals and vitamins contributes to building and maintaining bone structure and strength.
Iron and zinc fulfil crucial roles in maintaining the strength and elasticity of bones and joints.
Low intakes of vitamin K have been linked to a higher risk of bone fracture. However, adequate vitamin K intake improves calcium absorption and may reduce calcium loss.
2) Skin health
Collagen is the support system of the skin. It relies on vitamin C as an essential nutrient, and works to help prevent skin damage caused by the sun, pollution, and smoke. Vitamin C may also improve collagen’s ability to smooth wrinkles and enhance overall skin texture.
One cup of blueberries provides 24 percent of the recommended daily allowance of vitamin C.
3) Lowering blood pressure
Maintaining low sodium levels is essential to keeping blood pressure at a healthful level. Blueberries are free of sodium.
They contain potassium, calcium, and magnesium. Some studies have shown that diets low in these minerals are associated with higher blood pressure. Adequate dietary intake of these minerals is thought to help reduce blood pressure.
However, other studies have counteracted these findings. For example, a 2015 study of people with metabolic syndrome found that daily blueberry consumption for 6 weeks did not affect blood pressure levels.
4) Managing diabetes
Studies have found that people with type 1 diabetes who consume high-fiber diets have low blood glucose levels, and people with type 2 diabetes who consume the same may have improved blood sugar, lipid, and insulin levels. One cup of blueberries contributes 3.6 grams (g) of fiber.
A large 2013 cohort study published in the BMJ suggested that certain fruits may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes in adults.