There have been countless studies done to confirm that berries, including the most popular berries in America – blueberries and strawberries – truly are superfoods. Researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health and the University of East Anglia found that women could cut their risk of heart attack by 1/3 simply by eating blueberries or strawberries three times per week. Both these berries are loaded with dietary anthocyanins and powerful dietary flavonoids that help keep plaque off of arteries and provide other cardiovascular benefits.
Berries are full of flavor and health promoting properties.
New Study Results Just In
An eighteen-year study that started in 1989 followed almost 100,000 women aged 25 to 42 who filled out information pertaining to their diet during the study period. Just over 400 participants experienced a heart attack while the study was going on. When the data was analyzed, researchers concluded that women who ate berries regularly cut their risk of heart attack by one-third compared to the women who consumed berries one time per month or fewer.
These figures were constant even after other variables such as family history, exercise, body mass, and caffeine and alcohol use were considered. The study also found that other flavonoid-rich foods did not reduce the risk of heart attack in the same way that the berries did, indicating that anthocyanins in the berries played significantly roles in risk reduction.
“We have shown that even at an early age, eating more of these fruits [strawberries and blueberries] may reduce risk of a heart attack later in life, ” said lead author Aedín Cassidy, head of the Department of Nutrition at Norwich Medical School within the UEA.
Related Read: Health Benefits of Strawberries
Prevention is the Best Medicine
There is no doubt that prevention is the best medicine. Making even one simple dietary change like eating more foods rich in anthocyanins (grapes, strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, eggplant) can even keep cardiovascular disease at bay.
Berries are easy to incorporate into a healthy diet and should be eaten at least three times a week for best results. Try some berries on your cereal or in a delicious fruit smoothie. Remember to buy organic to bypass pesticide residue and support organic farmers.