Goji Berries:  Put the Super In Super Food

Goji Berries: Put the Super In Super Food

If there is one berry that you should be eating (though all berries should be a part of your diet!) it’s the goji berry. Both a berry and an herb, the goji berry has quickly gained superfood status due to its impressive nutritional properties. In fact, goji berries were used in ancient Chinese medicine where they earned the nickname “the red diamond,” because its nutritional content was so rare and unusual to find.

Red-orange in color and resembling a raisin in appearance, goji berries can only be found in their dried form. These berries might be uncommon or pricier in your average grocery store, but they can be found online  or in most health food stores.

Want to learn more? Read on to find out about goji berry benefits and  

Health Benefits of Goji Berries

1.   Nutrient Rich

Goji berries contain an impressive amount of vitamins and minerals. Just a quarter cup of goji berries contains 11 essential vitamins and 22 trace minerals, including 24 percent of our  recommended intake  of potassium, 18 percent of our  recommended intake  of zinc and  an incredible  100 percent of our  recommended intake  of iron, copper and riboflavin.  Goji berries  also contain 18 amino acids, the building blocks of protein. Due to all of their nutrients, goji berries are also natural anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and anti-fungal. Their immense antioxidant properties and polysaccharides help to boost the immune system, warding off illness and disease.

2.   Antioxidant Rich

Goji berries are an excellent source of antioxidants, which help fight free radicals in the body that can lead to degenerative diseases such as arthritis, Alzheimer’s and cancer. In fact, goji berries contain 500 times more vitamin C than oranges and more beta-carotene than carrots. According to the Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity (ORAC) test, goji berries received a score of 3,290, which puts it at the top of the list in antioxidants compared to most other fruits.

3.   Cardiovascular Help

Free radicals can also attack the heart, one of if not the most important organ in our bodies. When the heart muscle is attacked, it can result in the heart being weakened. Over time this can lead to damaging heart conditions. While this is an accumulative effect that occurs over time, goji berries can act as a precautionary, protective measure, protecting the heart from free radicals with its mass amount of antioxidants.

4.   Cancer Fighter

Due to the high amount of  antioxidants they contain, known as polyphenols, goji berries make a fantastic cancer fighter. These  polyphenols fight against, reduce, and help to repair cell damage that is caused by inflammation and stress from free radicals. This helps to reduce the likelihood of cancerous tumor development.  When you consume goji berries, the antioxidants will seek out cancer causing free radicals in the body and destroy them before they can do your body any harm.

Other Health Benefits of Goji Berries:

  • diabetes help
  • protects the brain from cell damage
  • liver protection
  • vision improvement
  • skin protection

As you can see, these are some super berries! While they do tend to be pricey, you only need roughly a handful a day to receive the nutrients they provide, and the price is well worth it.

How to Eat Goji Berries

  • Toss them into yogurt or cereal
  • Add them to baked goods
  • Create a trail mix with them
  • Make goji berry granola
  • Sprinkle them over fresh salads
  • Add them to tea