Berries May Naturally Reduce Risk of Diabetes
Low sugar, colorful fruits such as berries are a great addition to any diet, especially those who are at risk for developing Type 2 Diabetes.
A recent Cochrane review, published in the European Clinical Journal of Nutrition, confirms the positive effects that fruits containing anthocyanins have on reducing the risk of diabetes. In the review, consumption of berries – especially blueberries, blackberries, raspberries and strawberries – was associated with an 18% reduction in risk for developing Type 2 Diabetes.
Anthocyanins are among the most recognizable phytonutrient in fruits and vegetables because they color the foods in beautiful red, purple, and blue hues. Biologically, they have a number of healthy benefits, including being an antioxidant and an anti-inflammatory agent.
Flavonoids are not the only positive component of berries. They are also a good source of dietary fiber, which can help with blood sugar control as well. This also makes them filling without contributing a lot of calories to the diet. ¾ cup of blueberries or blackberries are only 60 calories.
Berries are also an excellent source of vitamin C which is necessary for the growth and development of tissues and promotes wound healing.
How to Eat More Berries
Fresh berries are a great addition to salads in the summer. They are a great topping for yogurt. And fruit is a healthful sweet-tasting alternative to dessert.
Frozen berries are great to keep on hand in colder months when they aren’t found as easily fresh. Toss a handful into a pot of hot breakfast cereal, such as oatmeal. Add them to pancakes or into a low-sugar smoothie for a quick breakfast!
Guo X et al. Associations of dietary intakes of anthocyanins and berry fruits with risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus: a systematic review and meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition advance online publication 17 August 2016; doi: 10.1038/ejcn.2016.142
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