5 health benefits of strawberries

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If you’re a strawberry addict like me, then this time of year must make you very happy. Canadian strawberries are just the best. Unlike their oversized waterlogged cousins to the south, berries grown in Canada are teeming with flavour. The common garden strawberry that we find in stores today is actually a hybrid of the French (for flavour) and Argentinean (for size) varieties. In our modern world, we’re accustomed to strawberries being available year-round, but nothing can compare to the first sweet taste of a fresh strawberry. Local berries also mean a much smaller carbon footprint.

1. They are an excellent source of folate

Strawberries are an amazing source of folate (the folic acid found in food). Inadequate amounts of folate in the aging population can contribute to atherosclerosis, vascular disease and even a decline in cognitive function. Medications used for conditions like rheumatoid arthritis can actually deplete folic acid in the body, so stock up on strawberries to replenish!

2. They could reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease

Strawberries are being studied for their unique ability to suppress the inflammatory responses of the body and reduce our risk of hypertension by lowering LDL cholesterol. A 2013 study published in Circulation found women who ate three or more servings of strawberries and blueberries in a week reduced their risk of heart attack by 32 percent.

3. There’s more than enough vitamin C

Strawberries contain more than 100 percent of our daily recommended intake of vitamin C in just one cup. Recent studies show that when vitamin C is consumed during times of stress, it actually has the ability to decrease our blood pressure to a normal level, preventing the development of hypertension — especially in kids.

4. They’re a great source of fibre

Strawberries are high in fibre, which is important for moving food through your digestive system and helping bowel movements. This can help improve digestion, especially for those with constipation or irregular stools.

5. They’re high in antioxidants

Strawberries contain anthrocyanin, which is a powerful antioxidant that protects us from the damaging effects of our environment, especially the sun. The antioxidant power of the anthrocyanins found in strawberries lasts up to 24 hours after consumption; this makes them a great defence against free radical damage.

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