Blue Sky Blueberries - Health Benefits, Recipes and Wine

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Storage and Nutritional Facts 

Our blueberries are ripened on the bush and provided fresh for you.  This means they will be more flavorful and store much much longer than the fruit you buy in the market.  Keep refrigerated. 

You can also freeze them. The best way is to freeze them in a single layer. Then transfer them to a resealable plastic bag and put them back in the freezer. This will allow you to pull them out individually later. We have had folks store them up to a year in the freezer.

Fresh and frozen blueberries typically contain about 83 calories per 1 cup serving, 16 to 20% dietary fiber (4 g per cup), high in potassium, foliate, and vitamins A and C.  Zero fat and zero cholesterol. 

Information provided above via the USHBC and references sited by USHBC. See the USHBC link below.

Health Benefits and Research

Antioxidants:  According to the USDA Human Nutrition Center (HNRCA), blueberries rank #1 in antioxidant activity when compared to 40 other fresh fruits and vegetables.  

Anti-Aging and Parkinson Disease:  In a separate study by HNRCA, neuroscientists discovered that blueberries slowed age-related loss in mental capacity. Also, blueberries may play a significant role in combating Parkinson Disease. Dr. Susan McGuire at Loyola University is one of the leading researchers. Learn more by visiting her work via the following link http://www.luhs.org/depts/path/physicians/mcguire.htm

Disease Prevention:  At UC Davis, studies showed that blueberries may reduce the build up of "bad" cholesterol which contributes to cardiovascular disease and stroke.

Vision:  Numerous studies in Europe have documented the relation between bilberries (a close relative of blueberries) and improved eyesight.  Blueberries were also credited for reduced eye fatigue in research conducted by Japanese scientists.

Memory and Brain Function:  New research is being performed now which has linked blueberries with reduced memory loss and increased memory retention.  These studies have not yet been confirmed and honestly I can't remember. :) According to Dr. James Joseph, in the Laboratory of Neuroscience at the USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging, “Call the blueberry the brain berry,” For more information see this link http://www.lef.org/magazine/mag2006/feb2006_report_blueberries_01.htm

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For easy reference, the list from many sources of reported blueberry benefits includes:

  • improved vision
  • clearing arteries
  • more antioxidants for disease prevention
  • strengthening blood vessels
  • enhanced memory
  • stopping urinary tract infections
  • reversing age-related physical and mental declines
  • promoting weight control

According to the American Institute for Cancer Research, "We now know that blueberries are one of the best sources of antioxidants, substances that can slow the aging process and reduce cell damage that can lead to cancer".

"When it comes to brain protection, there's nothing quite like blueberries, according to Tufts neuroscientist James Joseph," as recounted in Newsweek 2002. "I call the blueberry the brain berry," says Joseph.

In the August 2009 issue of Science Daily, it was reported that blueberry leaves contain a polyphenolic compound (proanthocyandin) that has shown a strong effect in blocking the replication of the Hepatitis C virus.  A similar compound is present in grapes and wine.  Read more about the discovery at www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090807120952.htm

Blueberries are a key component in the 5 A Day The Color WayTM for Better Health Program, the nation's largest public-private nutrition education initiative. Eat Your Colors!

There are thousands of references on the benefits of blueberries. We suggest you start with the USHBC, Health Magazine, Prevention Magazine, and Journal of Neuroscience, for example.

Information provided above taken from www.oregonblueberry.com/health

Also check out these publications for more health benefits and details: www.nabcblues.org/publications/consumer/health.pdf and www.blueberry.org/health.htm

 

Recipes and Healthy Fun

Need ideas on how to prepare blueberries?  Check out this cookbook: "The Joy of Blueberries, Natures Little Blue Powerhouse" by Theresa Millang. Adventure Publications, Inc., Cambridge, MN

Heres a link to a web page with TONS of recipes and different ways to use blueberries: www.blueberry.org/recipes.htm#classics

Also, visit culinary artist and author Chef Bruce Biron's site at www.chefbiron.com

 

Along with your blueberries, don't forget about the other berries, such as WINEGRAPES! Wine has been shown to be effective against heart disease. Check out these wines and wineries:

Bokisch Winery & Vineyards with Spanish varietal wines - Albarino, Tempranillo, Graciano, and Garnacha  www.bokischvineyards.com

For More Information regarding Blueberries we have found the following resources to be very helpful:

US Highbush Blueberry Council (USHBC) www.ushbc.org

North American Blueberry Council (NABC) www.nabcblues.org

California Blueberry Association (CBA)

Oregon State University Extension

Oregon Blueberry Commission www.oregonblueberry.com

University of Florida Agricultural Extension

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