Strawberries are one of nature’s healthiest "packages" of power nutrients. There is strong evidence that strawberries are a heart-protective fruit, an anti-cancer fruit, and an anti-inflammatory fruit all rolled into one ripe treat.
Let’s have a look at strawberries health benefits.
1 Vitamins, Phytochemicals & Antioxidants
One of the top benefits of strawberries is their antioxidant and phytonutrient content, which give strawberries heart-protecting, anti-inflammatory, and anti-cancer properties. According to a US Department of Agriculture study, strawberries rank third when compared to the top fresh fruits and vegetables.
Strawberries are widely known for their potential health benefits due to their high vitamin C, fiber, B-vitamins, and potassium contents.
In addition, strawberries are abundant in phytonutrients, including flavonoids, anthocyanidins and ellagic acid, that have been the subject of much investigation by numerous research laboratories.
2 Cancer Prevention
There have been many published reports on the anticancer effects of strawberries. Strawberries are one of the few sources, along with raspberries and grapes, of ellagic acid, a compound which has been shown to prevent carcinogens from turning healthy cells into cancerous ones.
Besides ellagic acids strawberries contain a multitude of cancer-fighting compounds, including vitamin C, folate, anthocyanins, quercetin and kaempferol. Strawberries have shown promise in both cell culture and epidemiological studies.
Recent study found that freeze-dried strawberry powder can prevent esophageal cancer.
3 Cardiovascular Disease Protection
New research from Harvard Medical School found that strawberries may offer cardiovascular disease protection. The study found that those who reported eating the most strawberries experienced lower blood levels of C-reactive protein.
C-reactive protein or CRP is a blood biomarker that signals the presence of inflammation in the body. Elevated levels of CRP have been shown in multiple studies to be a potentially good predictor of risk for both heart disease and stroke, as it is generally a signal of atherosclerosis.
4 Anti-Clotting Effect
Strawberry consumption may protect against blood clot formation.
An animal study found that strawberries had a powerful anti-clotting effect. Strawberry extracts were shown to produce anti-clotting (anti-thrombotic) properties in mice, an effect possibly mediated by inhibiting platelet activity and by producing antioxidant effects.
5 Prevention of Atherosclerosis
Strawberries may play a role in the prevention of arterial plaques (atherosclerosis). Freeze-dried strawberry powder decreases circulating levels of adhesion molecules, which may contribute to the development of atherosclerosis.
6 Fountain of Youth: Prevents Neuronal and Behavioral Aging
Strawberries may protect against the decline of the central nervous system in age-related neurodegenerative diseases and to provide benefits to the aging brain.
"Research suggests that the polyphenolic compounds found in berry fruits, such as blueberries and strawberries, may exert their beneficial effects either through their ability to lower oxidative stress and inflammation or directly by altering the signaling involved in neuronal communication, calcium buffering ability, neuroprotective stress shock proteins, plasticity, and stress signaling pathways. These interventions, in turn, may exert protection against age-related deficits in cognitive and motor function."
High intake of blueberries and strawberrie appears to reduce rate of age-related cognitive decline in older adults.
Now researchers are looking at the effects of strawberry supplementation in three areas: behavioral aging, repair and regeneration of nerve cells in aging, and resistance to oxidative stress in aging.
7Sweet and Delicious, But Low in Sugar
Strawberries have a low Glycemic Index of 40. It is that rare case when sweet and tasty treat is waist-friendly and good for your health.
8 Help to Lower Cholesterol Levels
Researchers at the University of Toronto found that antioxidants in strawberries help lower "bad" cholesterol.
The researchers also found that people who consumed strawberries had reduced oxidative damage to LDL cholesterol, which is even more damaging when becomes oxidized.
9 Reduce Risk of Rheumatoid Arthritis
One of the benefits of strawberries may be the protection against rheumatoid arthritis.
Strawberries contain a lot of vitamin C. In fact, about eight medium berries provide 160 percent of the recommended daily allowance (RDA) of vitamin C.
A large population based study of more than 20,000 people found that vitamin C may protect against inflammatory polyarthritis, a form of rheumatoid arthritis involving two or more joints.
Participants who consumed the lowest amounts of vitamin C were three times more likely to develop the arthritic condition than those who consumed the highest amounts of vitamin C.
10 Prevent Ultraviolet Skin Damage
Ellagic acid, an antioxidant found in strawberries, may help prevent wrinkles and repair skin damage caused by the sun.
Researchers from Hallym University in South Korea applied ellagic acid to human skin cells in the lab and to the skin of hairless mice that had been exposed to strong, ultraviolet rays. In the human cells, ellagic acid reduced the destruction of collagen and inflammatory response, both major causes of wrinkles. Researchers had a similar result in 4-week-old mice, which are often used in dermatology studies because their skin is similar to that of humans.
11 Prevent Ulcers (Helicobacter pylori infection)
Berry extracts help kill the bacteria that cause most ulcers and improve the efficacy of prescription ulcer therapy, according to a report from Creighton University in Omaha, NE. The Nebraska researchers demonstrated that berry extracts not only inhibit the growth of H. pylori, but also render it more susceptible to clarithromycin, one of the antibiotics used to eradicate the bacteria.
12 Enhance Vision
According to a study in the Archives of Ophthalmology, eating three or more servings of fruit per day may lower a person’s risk of age-related macular degeneration by 36 percent.
It is not known exactly how fruit helps, but it is thought that the antioxidants may help protect macular cells in the retina by neutralising free radicals. However, because the antioxidant vitamins and carotenes did not contribute to the prevention in age-related macular degeneration, it is possible that other molecules in fruit may be playing a role.
|Nutrient contents of Strawberries|
|Total lipid (fat)||0.3 g|
|Carbohydrate, by difference||7.68 g|
|Fiber, total dietary||2 g|
|Sugars, total||4.89 g|
|Glucose (dextrose)||1.99 g|
|Calcium, Ca||16 mg|
|Iron, Fe||0.41 mg|
|Magnesium, Mg||13 mg|
|Phosphorus, P||24 mg|
|Potassium, K||153 mg|
|Sodium, Na||1 mg|
|Zinc, Zn||0.14 mg|
|Copper, Cu||0.048 mg|
|Manganese, Mn||0.386 mg|
|Selenium, Se||0.4 mcg|
|Fluoride, F||4.4 mcg|
|Vitamin C, total ascorbic acid||58.8 mg|
|Pantothenic acid||0.125 mg|
|Vitamin B-6||0.047 mg|
|Folate, total||24 mcg|
|Folate, DFE||24 mcg_DFE|
|Choline, total||5.7 mg|
|Vitamin A, RAE||1 mcg_RAE|
|Carotene, beta||7 mcg|
|Vitamin A, IU||12 IU|
|Lutein + zeaxanthin||26 mcg|
|Vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol)||0.29 mg|
|Tocopherol, beta||0.01 mg|
|Tocopherol, gamma||0.08 mg|
|Tocopherol, delta||0.01 mg|
|Vitamin K (phylloquinone)||2.2 mcg|
|Fatty acids, total saturated||0.015 g|
|Fatty acids, total monounsaturated||0.043 g|
|16:1 undifferentiated||0.001 g|
|18:1 undifferentiated||0.042 g|
|Fatty acids, total polyunsaturated||0.155 g|
|18:2 undifferentiated||0.09 g|
|18:3 undifferentiated||0.065 g|
|Aspartic acid||0.149 g|
|Glutamic acid||0.098 g|
Sources & References
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- 2. Joseph JA et al. Long-term dietary strawberry, spinach, or vitamin E supplementation retards the onset of age-related neuronal signal-transduction and cognitive behavioral deficits. J Neurosci. 18, 19:8047-55, 1998.
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