What you eat is often the best medicine for preventative health care, reducing the risk of severe conditions that commonly plagues society. Most people know fresh produce contains vitamins and minerals that nourish the body, but few people are familiar with the health benefits of golden berries.
Perhaps you’re one of those who’ve wondered, “Are golden berries good for you?” If so, this article will help break down the benefits of golden berries in your diet.
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What are golden berries?
You might be surprised to learn golden berries are closest related to the tomatillo. Just slightly smaller than a cherry or grape tomato, golden berries come in bright orange hues with a husk that needs removing before you eat it.
Golden berries grow across the United States and are considered one of the “superfoods.” A single cup of golden berries is an excellent source of vitamins A and C, helping to boost immunity and improve your overall health.
Most people describe golden berries as having a fruity, sweet taste — similar to pineapple or mango flavors. They enjoy them in fresh salads, smoothies, salsas, condiments, and jams. Other people might eat raw golden berries as a light snack throughout the day.
6 benefits of golden berries
Are golden berries good for you? Several studies have shown the advantages of adding more of this food to your diet. As such, you should keep an eye on these six benefits of golden berries if you want to enhance your health with food.
1. Reduces inflammation
If you thought arthritis only affects older adults, you’re quite mistaken. Rheumatoid arthritis can happen at almost any age, causing extreme inflammatory tenderness and discomfort in your joints. Many people find arthritis pain disrupts their daily activities and quality of life.
Fortunately, golden berries contain withanolides — anti-inflammatory biomarkers scientifically proven to reduce inflammation.
Recent studies demonstrate the effectiveness of withanolides on chronic inflammatory conditions. One clinical trial uncovered how withanolides deliver significant pain relief in osteoarthritis patients.
Understanding the powerful anti-inflammatory benefits of golden berries and eating more withanolides might play a critical role in calming common illnesses. These may include autoimmune diseases, Alzheimer’s, and other neurodegenerative disorders.
2. Prevents cell damage
Exposure to air pollutants leads to a buildup of free radicals in the body. Although they’re only present for a moment, free radicals could cause cellular and DNA damage over time.
Excessive free radicals are known for causing inflammation, cognitive impairment, heart disease, and cancer. Therefore, individuals predisposed to poor air quality or genetic conditions might consider eating more golden berries for their high levels of antioxidants.
Their antioxidative properties are perhaps the most critical of all the benefits of golden berries. For instance, studies suggest the antioxidants in them — also called carotenoids — can prevent inflammation-fed cancer and bolster cell survival against lung cancer.
3. Lowers cholesterol levels
Another antioxidant found in golden berries is phytosterols. Phytosterols naturally occur in plant-based foods, such as fresh produce, grains, fortified dairy, cheeses, and nuts. They’re also good for helping reduce cholesterol levels.
In some ways, phytosterols trick the body into thinking it’s cholesterol by how it appears and behaves. When you consume phytosterols, it often competes with cholesterol during digestion. Rather than absorb bad stuff, your body will digest phytosterols instead and replace some of the cholesterol with healthier compounds.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 94 million Americans over 20 have total cholesterol levels above healthy levels, with 7% of children between six and 19 reporting high cholesterol.
It might be hard to know whether you have high cholesterol or not until you get bloodwork. Regardless, getting to healthier cholesterol levels is essential to prevent heart disease and stroke.
4. Improves cardiovascular health
The American Heart Association highlights the importance of maintaining heart health. For instance, cardiovascular events accounted for 874,613 deaths in the U.S. in 2019. Additionally, someone in the U.S. experiences a heart attack every 40 seconds, while one person dies from a stroke about every three and a half minutes.
Medical researchers have long encouraged heart-healthy diets to ward off cardiovascular disease. Often, these diets rely on consuming leafy greens, non-saturated fats, fresh seafood, and whole grains, all of which contain essential antioxidants.
Carotenoids – the antioxidants responsible for preventing cell damage caused by free radicals – also help safeguard the heart. Of the 700 known carotenoids, humans only get about 50 from the foods they eat, typically found in fatty tissue, the liver, and muscles.
Remember that golden berries contain carotenoids. The positive effects of carotenoids on heart health are notable. One study found a 34% to 83% reduced mortality rate for heart attack, stroke, diabetes, and respiratory conditions in people who consumed higher amounts of carotenoids. This lower risk is undoubtedly one of the best health benefits of golden berries.
5. Regulates blood sugar levels
Western civilization’s eating habits have led to an influx of diabetes cases. In 2019, approximately 11.3% of Americans had diabetes. Almost two million reportedly had type I diabetes. Of course, children and adolescents are also greatly affected, with about 230,000 cases reported for people under 20 years of age.
Several risk factors for diabetes include smoking, cholesterol levels, and predisposition to the disease. However, the most common factor is obesity — 89.8% of people with diabetes classify as overweight with a body mass index above 25.
Golden berries are a healthy addition to a preventative diet against diabetes. In addition to the many antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits of golden berries, they also help balance blood sugar levels in the body.
Medical research shows oxidative stress in the body’s tissues can cause or exacerbate diabetes. However, a diet or supplement with specific vitamins and minerals can help improve the condition.
For example, vitamin C is water soluble and can move more freely throughout the body than other vitamins. Vitamin C also allows fruits to keep their bright coloring with air exposure. Golden berries contain ample vitamin C, which can significantly improve oxidative stress after exercise and reduce inflammation.
6. Might improve vision
Some of the most prominent antioxidants in golden berries are beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin, which are associated with a lower risk of age-related macular degeneration (AMD).
Approximately 11 million people in the U.S. have AMD, the leading cause of vision loss in adults 55 and over. You might be at a higher risk for age-related macular degeneration if it runs in your family, you’re a smoker, or you’re Caucasian. The most common signs include:
- Mild to severe blurriness.
- Difficulty seeing in low light.
- Seeing wavy or crooked lines.
- The prevalence of black spots in your vision.
- Subdued colors.
Studies suggest ingesting 10 mg of lutein and 2 mg of zeaxanthin can prevent worsening vision loss associated with AMD. Although your doctor might prescribe lutein-containing medications for this condition, you can give yourself an extra dose by eating golden berries.
Take Advantage of the Many Benefits of Golden Berries
Eating more golden berries can significantly improve your health and reduce your risk of severe illnesses and inflammatory conditions. There’s little doubt that golden berries are essential to a healthy diet, so consider adding these delicious, versatile fruits to your meals.
If you enjoyed reading about the health benefits of golden berries, check out my posts on other plant-based superfoods, including sacha inchi oil, pili nuts, ashwagandha, cacao powder, and turmeric milk.
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