The Anti-Aging and Nutritional Benefits of Berries

Why Everyone Should Indulge in the Sweet Treat of Fresh Berries

Berry for breakfast
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When it comes to natural anti-aging power, berries are one of the best foods you can find. Not only do berries contain lots of antioxidants to fight free radicals in your body, but they also contain tons of other nutrients to keep you healthy into old age.

Berries Can Help You Eat the Rainbow

One of the most well-known pieces of healthy-eating advice is the "eat the rainbow," meaning that you should eat a wide variety of foods of different colors.

Eating the rainbow is not just about having a beautifully colorful plate, the practice will assure that you are getting a variety of nutrients as the color of fruits and vegetables comes from the natural chemicals in the skin and pulp of the fruit.

In general, darker colors in fresh produce means more nutrients, which is why you constantly hear about the superfood properties of dark leafy greens like spinach and kale. But you don't have to limit yourself to just the green veggies when fresh berries with their rich reds, purples, and blues are up for offer.

The Anti-Aging Power of Berries

Berries of all sorts are known for their juicy, sweet, and tart flavors and their ability to make delicious cobblers and pies, but did you know that berries offer a uniquely concentrated boost of several nutrients? For instance, one cup of fresh blueberries contains 13% of your daily recommended fiber, but it also contains a laundry list of other essential nutrients:

  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin B6
  • Vitamin K
  • Iron
  • Calcium
  • Magnesium
  • Phosphorus
  • Manganese
  • Zinc
  • Folate
  • Beta-carotene
  • Choline
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin E

...just to name a few.

Beyond vitamins and minerals, berries naturally contain anthocyanidins, which are flavonoids known for their antioxidant properties. But perhaps more interesting are these flavonoid's non-antioxidant roles in the body.

These flavonoids are believed to positively affect a wide variety of reactions and processes in the human body and they may affect a range of important cell-signaling pathways.

There are ongoing studies of flavonoid's anti-inflammatory properties, which with so many diseases being linked to chronic inflammation only boosts the berry higher on the anti-aging food list. But perhaps the most researched anti-aging impact of flavonoids is its effect on cardiovascular disease, which is among one of the deadliest and most common diseases today. It has been theorized that these non-antioxidant properties of flavonoids might actually have a positive influence on the onset and progression of cancer and cardiovascular diseases.

How to Eat More Berries

Though each berry has its own nutritional stats, they all possess health benefits worth enjoying. Thankfully, there is quite a variety of berries available today, including:

  • Elderberries

With such variety, it shouldn't be difficult to work them into your diet. Focus on eating fresh whole berries rather than dried berries, juices, jams, or syrups, which contain high amounts of sugar. If you do opt for dried berries for your homemade granola or a shelf-stable snack, be sure to look for options that have no added sugar. When available, fresh berries are always a favorite, but frozen options are available year-round and make for great smoothie additions. When you can, also try to opt for organic berries as berries tend to collect pesticides because of their high water content.

If you're interested in learning more about naturally anti-aging foods, be sure to check out the next anti-aging food profile: Green Tea


Higdon, Jane, Victoria Drake, and Balz Frei. "Non-antioxidant Roles for Dietary Flavonoids: Reviewing the Relevance to Cancer and Cardiovascular Diseases." Neutraceuticals World(2009)

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