Like most berries, blackberries are low in calories and high in nutrients. Blackberries are different from black raspberries in that black raspberries are hollow inside while blackberries are filled with seeds. Blackberries are one of the top antioxidant foods and can be greatly beneficial for those suffering from inflammatory diseases.

Disease/Ailment:

Chronic inflammation
Cancer prevention
Skin disorders
Cardiovascular disorders
Urinary tract infections

Health benefits:

Anti-inflammation: Anthocyanins, which give blackberries their dark color, are an antioxidant shown to reduce inflammation. They prevent DNA damage and scavenge free radicals. They also regulate enzymes that are important in metabolizing carcinogens and modulate nuclear receptors, gene expression, and signaling pathways of proliferation, angiogenesis and apoptosis. These properties are what contribute to the anti-cancer health benefits.

Endothelium protection: Blackberries contain ellagic acid, an antioxidant shown to protect the skin from UV ray damage. Also the phytochemicals in blackberries scavenge peroxynitrites, which are toxic to endothelial cells.

Cardiovascular: Studies have shown that blackberries improve vascular contractility.

Tumor growth inhibition: High anthocyanin content is primarily responsible for the anti-cancer health benefits of blackberries. Studies have shown a reduction in tumor cell growth in the colon and breast as well as in leukemia cells.

Good source of:

Vitamin C, K, manganese

Purchasing, storing, & enjoying:

Purchasing: Pick berries that are dark rich in color, shiny, and free of any bruises or leaking. Berries that show any pink or yellow aren’t fully ripened and will be tart and sour. The peak season for blackberries is in the summer, but they can be purchased year-round.

Storing: Refrigerate blackberries for 3-6 days and wash just before using.

Enjoying: The vitamin and nutrient content is at its peak when blackberries are consumed fresh. Start your day with a boost of antioxidants by topping your oatmeal or cereal with blackberries.

Resources & recipes:

Blackberry fudge brownies: http://lowfatveganchef.com/oil-free-vegan-fudgey-blackberry-brownies/

Blackberry cobbler: http://www.sheknows.com/food-and-recipes/articles/999465/vegan-blackberry-cobbler

Blackberry coconut lime smoothie: http://www.vanderbiltwife.com/2013/02/vegan-blackberry-coconut-smoothies/

 

References:

http://oksusag.okstate.edu/uploaded_files/LucasBlackberryHealth.pdf

http://berryhealth.fst.oregonstate.edu/health_healing/fact_sheets/blackberry_facts.htm

http://berryhealth.fst.oregonstate.edu/health_healing/fact_sheets/index.htm

http://health.learninginfo.org/blackberries.htm

http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/fruits-and-fruit-juices/1848/2


About the Author

Ashley Kim

"Our bodies are our gardens—our wills are our gardeners." – William Shakespeare

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