Surprising Facts About California Strawberries
Confused by all of the studies recommending what foods to eat? California strawberries make the choice simple. A steady stream of research continues to find that the important nutrients in strawberries make this superfruit a healthy part of daily meals and snacks.
Spring brings an abundance of fresh California strawberries to stores and markets, just in time for National Nutrition Month, an annual campaign by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Adding more fresh and frozen strawberries to your diet is an easy way to maintain your commitment to good nutrition this month and every month. Current and ongoing research suggests that eating just eight strawberries a day may improve heart health, lower blood pressure, reduce the risk of some cancers and support cognitive function.
Researchers from Oklahoma State University and the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences center recently published an article online in Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition (February 2013) which concluded that strawberries are a "functional food," and the consumption of fresh or frozen strawberries can help manage disease and promote health and wellness. The article reviewed studies from the past decade and found extensive evidence documenting the nutritional benefits of strawberries.
Nutrition expert David Grotto, RD, LDN, includes the nutrient-dense strawberry on the list of best fruits in his book, "The Best Things You Can Eat." He calls strawberries a superfruit because they deliver exceptional nutrition per calorie and significant health benefits, and are easy to prepare and find in stores all year.
"The science of nutrition is discovering the healing power of food," Grotto said. "Studies show that a diet that regularly includes strawberries may help reduce risk factors for disease. The potassium found in strawberries can help control blood pressure and fight strokes, while the berry's antioxidants, fiber and phytochemicals have been shown to reduce total cholesterol levels. The vitamin C in strawberries helps repair cell damage in the body and promotes a healthy immune system."
Universally loved, locally grown, strawberries are the feel-good berry that's good for everyone.
More Surprising Facts About California Strawberries
>>A serving of eight medium-sized strawberries has more vitamin C than an orange and contains only 45 calories and 7 grams of sugar.
>>The American Diabetes Association identifies berries, including strawberries, as one of the top 10 superfoods for a diabetes meal plan because they are packed with vitamins, antioxidants and dietary fiber.
>>Eating strawberries more than twice a week appears to delay cognitive aging by up to 2.5 years, according to a study in the July 2012 issue of Annals of Neurology.
With year-round availability, California strawberries are a nutritious and versatile fruit to enjoy every day. Try this delicious and easy recipe to enjoy California strawberries at any time of day.
California Strawberry Coconut Pick-Me-Up
Makes 4 (12 ounce) servings
4 cups hulled California strawberries, frozen
1½ cups coconut water
⅓ cup orange juice
Sliced California strawberries, for garnish
- Place all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth.
- Pour into glasses, garnish with sliced strawberries, and serve immediately.
Per Serving: 105 calories; 0.5 g fat; 0 mg cholesterol; 99 mg sodium; 26 g carbohydrate; 5 g fiber; 2 g protein