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An Ode to Blackberries

Blackberry season is upon us! My favourite local wildberry, blackberries are both delicious and full of healthy nutrients. I am blessed to live in a place where these purple-blue fruits grow in abundance - both native and non-native varieties!

While many of us head to the brambles with our containers to collect and then eat these delicious beauties, did you know that blackberries were an excellent source of antioxidants like bioflavonoids? Most wildberries like the raspberry, and the blueberry are also high in these, but blackberries are the tops when it comes to measuring amounts per 100g. Antioxidants are known for their cancer-preventing qualities as well as their anti-aging and health protecting effects. Bioflavonoids are generally immune moderating and therefore balance the functioning of the immune system as well as enhance circulation.

The fiber content of blackberries is another healthy bonus! We keep the bowels moving and aid in reducing cholesterol levels when we consume fiber regularly. This reduces colon cancer risks and the keeps the toxin levels in the body at a minimum, while helping to increase our nutrient absorption.

One cup of blackberries has 35% of the recommended daily allowance (RDA) of Vitamin C and 2-3% of the Iron RDA, while still being low in calories; just 43 calories per cup. By the way, did you know that Vitamin C enhances your iron absorption? But do note that once you cook these berries, they will lose the majority of their vitamin content through high-heat cooking or prolonged warming.

Looking to include blackberries in your diet? Try these simple ways: 1) add a cup over top of your favorite salad; 2) put a cup in your morning smoothie; 3) make blackberry oat pancakes; 4) blackberry crumble! (or mix with apples and rosemary as a variation); 5) enjoy them fresh all by themselves or in a fruit salad! Whichever way you choose to eat them, invite a friend to join you to enhance all the good vibes you will get from this food!

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