In Season: Blueberries

July is National Blueberry Month, so what better time to focus on a berry with one of the highest antioxidant capacities—if not the highest—among all fruit? Native to North America, the blueberry’s antioxidant properties support whole body functions like regulating blood sugar, eye health, cardiovascular health, and cognitive function. Blueberries also contain ample amounts of vitamin C and vitamin K1, fiber, and manganese. But it doesn’t stop there; these super berries are nutritious right down to their pigments. Anthocyanin—the nutrient that gives blueberries their color—is associated with good vision and the ability to fight chronic diseases.

>>Quinoa Blueberry Muffins

On the stove, bring ½ cup of quinoa to a simmer, then reduce to low and cover for 30 to 35 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool for 5 minutes. Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees and grease the muffin pan with a dab of olive oil. Combine 1 ¼ cups flour, ½ teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon baking powder, and ½ teaspoon salt in a large bowl and mix with quinoa until mixed well. Whisk together ½ cup low-fat yogurt, ½ cup agave nectar, ¼ cup oil, 1 tea-

spoon vanilla extract, and 1 egg in another bowl, then add this mixture little by little to the flour mixture and mix well. Fold in 1 cup of fresh blueberries, then pour the batter into the muffin pan. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Let muffins cool partially in pan before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

Source: Divya Pramil,

>>Blueberry Mind Bender Smoothie

Combine 2 tablespoons walnuts and 1 ¼ cups vanilla soy milk in a blender and blend from low to high until smooth. Add 1 cup blueberries, 1 banana, 2 tea­spoons chia seeds, and ½ cup ice, and blend from low to high until smooth.

Source: 365 Vegan Smoothies: Boost Your Health With a Rainbow of Fruits and Veggies by Kathy Patalsky