Blueberries are delicious and a powerhouse of heart-healthy compounds. Not only do they contain a myriad antioxidants, known as polyphenols, which work relentlessly to combat free radicals, they maintain healthy blood vessels and improve overall heart health, too.
Here are four reasons why you should consider making blueberries an indispensable part of your daily diet.
1. Reduce Bad Cholesterol
High levels of LDL cholesterol, commonly referred to as bad cholesterol, is a major precursor for a variety of heart ailments, particularly strokes and heart attacks. Blueberries can lower the levels of LDL in your blood, thus reducing oxidative damage and keeping your heart healthy. (Related Article: 8 Foods To Lower Cholesterol Levels Naturally)
2. Artery Health
The polyphenol antioxidants in blueberries are known to reduce the oxidation of lipids in the body and improve health by preventing hardening of the arteries.
3. Control Blood Pressure
Blueberries can lower elevated blood pressure, which is an important trigger for several heart conditions. If you have high blood pressure, it means your heart is working too hard to pump blood throughout the body. This can put extra strain on your heart and weaken it. (Related Article: 5 Foods That Can Treat Low Blood Pressure)
4. Protect Heart Tissue
Hypertension and clogged arteries can decrease the flow to the heart and damage the heart tissue. Naturally occurring antioxidants in blueberries are believed to provide resistance to this damage by neutralizing the free radicals and quelling maladaptive inflammatory response.
Blueberries come with a range of health benefits that are limited not only to the heart, but also to the brain and other organs. Here are a few other health benefits of blueberries.
- Blueberries are known to improve brain function. Studies show that the phytonutrients in blueberries can attenuate age-related cognitive and motor impairment, augment brain plasticity and increase protection against neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and dementia.
- They can also decrease inflammation by counteracting oxidative stress and modulate genes that can result in various diseases.
- Fermented blueberry extract stimulates the production of insulin while also inhibiting alpha amylase activity. It can therefore be used as an excellent adjunctive therapy for type 2 diabetes.
- Blueberries contain several low molecular weight phenols that are known to stimulate colon function and improve overall digestive health.