There’s no denying that strawberries—whether frozen or fresh—are a tasty treat. They are so popular, that Americans actually eat 3.4 pounds of fresh strawberries each year. (1) The best part about strawberries, besides their juicy and delicious taste, is their nutrition value. They are packed with antioxidants, such as Vitamin C and can even help prevent wrinkles!
So, in recognition of Strawberry Day, let’s chat and chew about the health benefits of strawberries.
They boost immunity. As I mentioned above, strawberries are full of Vitamin C, which is not only a fast-working antioxidant, it is known to boost immunity as well. Just one serving of strawberries contains 51.5 mg of Vitamin C—roughly half of your daily requirement, says Toronto-based registered dietitian Madeleine Edwards. (2)
They keep your eyes healthy. The antioxidants in strawberries can also help prevent cataracts (clouding over eye lens), which can ultimately lead to blindness. Vitamin C protects our eyes from the sun’s harsh UV rays, as well as helps strengthen the eye’s cornea and retina.
They help fight against cancer. Vitamin C keeps the immune system healthy, which is the body’s best defense against disease like cancer. Ellagic acid—a phytochemical found in strawberries—has been shown to “yield anti-cancer properties like suppressing cancer cell growth,” according to Edwards.
They promote younger-looking skin. Once again, Vitamin C proves powerful, because it is essential to the production of collagen—the key ingredient to your skin’s elasticity and resilience. By eating foods rich in Vitamin C, you help replace the collagen you naturally lose as you age.
They keep your heart healthy. The Heart and Stroke Foundation reports that heart disease is one of the leading causes of death among women. Luckily, strawberries contain powerful heart-healthy benefits! The phytochemicals found in strawberries counteract the effect of low-density LDL (bad cholesterol in the blood), which can cause plaque build-up in arteries, according to Edwards. Research shows that strawberries can also reduce oxidative damage and blood lipids—both of which play a key role in heart disease and diabetes.
They reduce inflammation. Strawberries help reduce inflammation of the joints, which can lead to arthritis and heart disease. A Harvard School of Public Health study concluded “women who eat 16 or more strawberries per week are 14 percent less likely to have elevated levels of C-reactive protein (CRP).” (3)
They regulate blood pressure. Strawberries also have 134 mg of potassium per serving. Potassium can help regulate blood pressure, or even lower it, by blocking the negative effects of sodium.
The list above proves that strawberries are beneficial for any diet. Also, to no surprise, strawberries have earned their title as one of the heart-healthiest fruits you can eat—they not only reduce LDL, inflammation, and high blood pressure, they help with digestion and aid in weight management.
So, if you don’t already indulge in strawberry goodness, start today by trying one of these 20 Healthy Strawberry Recipes. Already love this yummy red fruit? Share some recipes of your own and help keep other readers heart healthy like you!