Strawberries are an ancient fruit that have been well documented in ancient Europe. These berries have been growing wild around the world; there is no definite place of origin. While being commended for its medicinal purposes by the Romans and Greeks it was just a luxury item in those periods. The berry was supposedly used to treat digestive problems and skin conditions. It wasn’t until the 19th century when the fruit was cultivated for mass production in temperate climates. Strawberries have quickly gained popularity throughout the world not only because of its health benefits and taste; it also has nutrients that make the skin look younger which is why you see the fruit being used in many cosmetics products such shampoos, soap, facials, etc.
The strawberry is a powerhouse of nutrients that provide the body with optimal health; the sweet berry can be enjoyed by anyone whether you are diabetic or seeking a healthier lifestyle. While many people still condemn sweet fruits due to sugar content, anything can be eaten in the proper portions. One cup of whole strawberries has: 46 calories, 0.43 grams of fat, 3 grams of dietary fiber, 7 grams of sugar, and 1 gram of protein.
- Strawberries are known for their high content of vitamin C over 100% of the recommended DV in a single serving. Giving the berry antioxidant properties that protect the body from free radicals, lowers the chance of cardiovascular disease, the occurrence of type 2 diabetes, and complications that are common with diabetes.
- Strawberries have a huge diversity of phytonutrients that include anthocyanin, flavonols, tannins, and many more. These give additional antioxidant protection and anti-inflammatory which helps decrease inflammation in the digestive system alleviating bowel diseases such as Crohn’s disesase. It also decreases LDL (bad) cholesterol and total cholesterol in the body.
- A good source of minerals that include potassium and magnesium help promote bone health reducing the chance of osteoporosis.
- Fiber content also helps by reducing cholesterol, feel satiated longer, normalize blood sugar levels, and even reduce the chances of cancer causing substances from entering your digestive system which leads to colon cancer.
Strawberries have a short shelf life at two days there is a tremendous loss of antioxidants. Please consume within a few days of purchase and try to avoid discolored or bruised berries as their taste will be bitter and a loss of nutrients. Try to eat the fruit as is for maximum nutrient retention. As always please consult a nutritionist when making drastic changes.