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Blackberry Health Benefits, Nutritional Value and Uses

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What is Blackberry?

This is an edible soft fruit that yields purple black fruit which comprises of multiple smaller fleshy segments or drupelets. Blackberries have a fragile and smooth skin with somewhat greenish core which lengthens nearly to the base of the berry. Immature blackberries are generally red or green and hard to touch which later turns into black, soft, juicy and glossy fruit on ripening. Blackberries grow well in a wide range of soils although good drainage is necessary and remember to plant them where they will be exposed to direct sunlight.

Health Benefits of Blackberry

Antioxidant Potential: Blackberries contain a profuse amount of powerful antioxidant which protects the body in multiple ways. Components such as phenolic acids, flavonoids and flavonols particularly anthocyanosides present in blackberries work against the harmful oxygen free molecules and counteract their action. This protective radical scavenging activity protects the body from a range of diseases caused as consequence of oxidative damage which may be the underlying cause of many fatal conditions.

Anti-Cancer Properties: The micronutrients present in blackberries exert chemopreventive effect and prevents the proliferation of malignant cells. Various scientific research conducted on blackberries have advocated this fact and have attributed the anti-cancer activity to the abundance of anthocyanins and other phytochemicals such as ellagic acid and cyaniding-3-glucoside which inhibits tumor growth and metastasis.

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For Healthy Bones: Blackberry contains vital minerals such as magnesium and calcium which are essential for maintain healthy bones. Calcium strengthens the bones and magnesium content in the blackberries facilitates the absorption of calcium and potassium in the body. In addition to this, phosphorus mineral present in blackberries aids in regulation of calcium and assists in building strong bones and contributes in proper cellular functioning.

For Good Skin Health: Blackberries are a great source of ellagic acid, an antioxidant that has been shown to protect the skin from UV damage. Research has found that ellagic acid may help to prevent sun damage by keeping collagen from degrading and reducing the inflammatory response caused by the sun. The Vitamin C in blackberries helps with wound healing and studies have also shown that vitamin C may lessen the appearance of wrinkles. Studies of cyanidin-3-glucoside, a compound found in blackberries showed it prevents skin cancer by inhibiting tumors from growing and spreading.

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Improved Digestive Health: Blackberries are a source of both insoluble and soluble fiber essential for the optimum functioning of digestive system. Insoluble fiber in blackberries encourages easy and better absorption of water in the large intestine and adds bulk to the stools. This aids in regular bowel movements, freedom from constipation and apt digestive health

Good Heart Health: Richness of flavonols such as anthocyanins in blackberries makes it a heart friendly fruit. Other useful components such as magnesium and fiber content present in blackberries prevent the arteries from getting blocked and stimulates smooth blow of blood. This reduces the risk of various heart diseases such as stroke, atherosclerosis and maintains cardiovascular health. Magnesium content in blackberries also helps in regulating the blood pressure and prevents cardiac arrhythmia and irregular contraction.

For Healthy Eyes: Blackberry is useful for maintaining healthy eyes. Regular consumption of blackberries helps in protecting the eyes from ultra-violet radiations attributing to the presence of lutein. Lutein forms protective pigment in the area behind the retina, also known as macula and prevents it from the damage caused by oxidative stress and high wavelength light radiations. Furthermore, anthocyanosides and vitamin content present in blackberries enhances the vision and protect the eyes from various diseases such as macular degeneration, cataract and night blindnes.

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Immunity Booster: Blackberries help in improving the immune system of the body attributing to the presence of phytoestrogens, vitamins and minerals. Regular consumption of blackberries helps fight various pathogens and protects from body from infections and other fatal illnesses.

Uses of Blackberry

 

  • The leaf, root, and fruit (berry) are used to make medicine.
  • They are used for preventing cancer and heart disease.
  • It is also used as a mouth rinse for mild mouth and throat irritation.
  • Blackberry is used for treating diarrhea, fluid retention, diabetes, gout, and pain and swelling (inflammation);