Blueberries: The Tiny Super Fruit

BlueberriesWhile many fruits are good for you, the blueberry is arguably the prettiest of color and (in my personal, opinion) the sweetest in taste. It ranks second only to the strawberry for the nation’s most popular berry. Famous for the purple-blue tone, with red-violet insides, blueberries were my absolute favorite to pick as a child—and remain, as an adult, my favorite to sit down to a bowl of, making National Blueberry month, one of the best in the year.

The hardy berry grows from April through October, but July is when the plant flourishes—just in time for all your backyard barbeque needs. Blueberry muffins, blueberry cobblers, blueberry pies, turnovers, crepes, compotes, pancakes, crumbs, go to show that there is nothing the tiny fruit can’t do. The crop grows strong in 35 of the 50 states, which accounts for 95% of the world’s crop. They can be dried, cooked, raw—each variation ranging from puckering-ly sour to puckering-ly sweet.

More than the taste though (but really, I could go on about the taste), the blueberry proves that it is not always a cruel world in which we live, as nature has provided us with something that is delicious and (!) healthy. The blueberry has been named several times the world’s leading “super fruit,” due to its being chocked full of antioxidants. These antioxidants work to improve metabolism, the nervous system, the brain and (recent research suggests) even memory! When older adults were given blueberries daily for twelve weeks, their cognitive abilities improved considerably, showing the endless health benefits of an improved diet. It helps that these berries also hold a small Glycemic Index, meaning that though they are sweet, your body does not recognize them as such. Your sugar levels are relevtively unaffected while eating blueberries, making them the ultimate sinless snack. (And with only 85 calories in a whole cup!)

To celebrate the fruit this month, many magazines and television shows are showcasing their most fabulous blueberry infused recipes, many of which are calling for contests to submit your own best blueberry tips and tricks. Festivals are going on throughout the South, with a particular emphasis on Georgia—who boasts the largest blueberry yields of any state. (And is one of the best places to retire!)

So make sure this month (and all eleven others) to make time for the tiniest, healthiest fruit. Your body, mind, and taste buds will be sure to thank you.

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