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The Antioxidant Power of Goji Berries

By 16th November 2015Article, Health and lifestyle
Dried goji berries in a bowl

Have you ever tried goji berries? Considered the most nutritionally dense food on earth, these tiny fruits can add years to your life. They have one of the highest antioxidant levels of all fruits, and provide only 90 calories per serving. Recent studies have found that this ancient berry can help prevent diabetes, obesity, cancer, and age-related mascular degeneration. In Asian countries, goji berries have been used as a medicine for thousands of years. Find out about the antioxidant power of goji berries.

What Makes Goji Berries So Popular?

Also known as red diamonds or wolfberries, these fruits were a staple in Tibetan medicine. Thousands of years ago, people were using them for treating insomnia, tuberculosis, eye problems, and poor digestion. Today, goji berries are popular worldwide for their unique health benefits. These sweet red berries improve life expectancy, strengthen your immune system, and increase brain activity.

Goji berries contain:

  • 18 amino acids
  • five monosaccharides
  • eight polysaccharides
  • five different types of fatty acids
  • six important vitamins
  • and powerful antioxidants like zeaxanthin, lutein, and beta-carotene.

One serving (about 1/4 cup) provides 90 calories, four grams of dietary fiber, four grams of protein, and 24 grams of carbohydrates. It also delivers 20 percent of the daily recommended intake of vitamin C, 140 percent of the daily recommended amount of vitamin A, and 20 percent of the recommended amount of iron.

These unusual berries have 500 times more vitamin C than oranges and more beta-carotene than carrots. They’re also a good source of amino acids and trace minerals. The nutrients found in goji berries may lower cholesterol levels, inhibit cancer cell growth, protect your eyes, and cleanse your blood. People who eat these berries regularly are less likely to develop fatty liver disease, leukemia, and tuberculosis.

The Amazing Health Benefits of Goji Berries

Due to their high antioxidant content, goji berries protect you from free radical damage and cleanse your body from the inside out. They also improve immune function, boost your energy levels, and keep your eyes healthy. These fruits contain essential fatty acids that help in weight loss and regulate hormone levels. Their anti-inflammatory effects should not be overlooked.

When consumed as part of a balanced diet, these berries normalize blood pressure and blood sugar levels, rejuvenate your skin, slow the aging process, and improve circulation. They may also improve sexual function and fertility. Most people love their slightly sweet flavor and bitter finishing notes. They usually eat these fruits raw, mix them with nuts and homemade granola, or add them to smoothies. Goji berries can be used in baked goods, cookies, muffins, Greek yogurt, homemade energy bars and hundreds of other recipes.

These fruits are also boiled as a herbal tea, or added to protein shakes. You can even make a high-protein goji cake, goji energy bars, goji berry biscotti, or spicy goji berry soup. Be creative and try different recipes using these delicious, healthy fruits. They are most commonly available in dried form and can be found in any grocery store. You may also take a daily supplement containing goji berry extract.

Create your own Goji Energy Bars

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup of raw pumpkin seeds
  • 1/4 cup of soaked buckwheat
  • 1/4 cup of honey
  • 1 cup of raw walnuts or cashew nuts
  • 1 cup of raw almonds
  • 1/3 cup of goji berries

Directions:

Soak buckwheat for 6-8 hours (change soaking water at least once) and nuts for and hour. Drain all well. Put pumpkin seeds, buckwheat, almonds, goji berries and walnuts or cashew nuts into a blender or food processor and blend for a few seconds on low. To leave chunky divide mixture and blend half at a time.

In a bowl, mix these ingredients with the honey and add a little more water to moisten if needed and add more dried goji berries.

Make cookie molds or balls with your hands or put the mixture into small baking tray to make compact energy bars. Let it sit for a while in fridge or freezer.