The Surprisingly Powerful Effects of Blueberries on Your Brain
Superfood for your Brain
If you’re not already incorporating blueberries into your diet on a regular basis, their brain health-boosting benefits may motivate you to start. Long considered as a kind of “superfood”, blueberries really do equal brain health. What causes this brain-boosting power? It comes from their high concentration of antioxidants, which help to balance the number of free radicals in the body which counteracts oxidative stress thereby supporting a more healthy, well-functioning immune system.
Specifically, though, blueberries benefit brain health by reducing inflammation. Inflammation is our immune system’s natural response to things like injury or infection. In today’s world, though, with our lack of foundational nutrition through the foods we eat, combined with our “go-go-go” lifestyle, chronic inflammation becomes a consistent pattern we see in society and it can contribute to the development of a number of health conditions, including those that form in, or have effects on, the brain and its ability to function normally. Because blueberries are rich in anti-inflammatory compounds, such as quercetin and kaempferol, they can help reduce this type of chronic inflammation, which is especially valuable for our brains.
Blueberries and their Neuroprotective Properties
In an article titled “Neuroprotective effects of blueberries extend beyond antioxidant activity” on the website nutraingredients.com, the author states, “Blueberries…affect multiple enzymes and pathways. Therefore, consuming blueberries as part of a healthy lifestyle, may play a pivotal role in the prevention and/or delaying of the progression of neurodegenerative diseases.”
The article also discusses recent studies that show that consuming blueberries may improve cognitive function, memory, and motor skills. These benefits may be due to the ability of blueberries to improve the function of the hippocampus, a region of the brain that is critical for memory and learning. Blueberries have also been shown to increase the production of new neurons in the hippocampus, which may improve the ability to learn and remember new information.
Additionally, blueberries have been shown to improve the function of the cerebellum, a region of the brain that is important for motor control and coordination. Consuming blueberries may help to improve balance and coordination, which may be beneficial for individuals with neurodegenerative diseases that affect motor function.
So the next time you find yourself at the grocery store, remember to add this tiny but mighty fruit to your basket. They are not only delicious, but versatile. You can enjoy them in cereal, oatmeal, smoothies or salads, not to mention on their own! Organic frozen blueberries are also a great substitute for fresh, as they retain their health benefits through the freezing process. Remember, you can also add the nutrition of fruits and vegetables to your day with Youngevity’s NEW 18 Daily Superfruit Blend and 20 Daily Super Veggie Blend. Enjoy!