Here’s the bad news. Many of us live with chronic inflammation.
It affects us in a number of ways, none of them good. (Chronic nerve pain here.)
Excess inflammation is hard to tame. Some people try to do it with drugs. Pharmaceuticals, however, have side effects. Some of them serious.
But there’s good news. Many plants contain natural anti-inflammatory compounds. So eating them is a double benefit. They are packed with nutrients. They can also potentially help lower runaway inflammation.
Fruits and vegetables contain a wide range of compounds that may fight inflammation.
Berries, in particular, are thought to be good inflammation fighters. One berry that’s receiving a lot of attention right now is the goji berry.
Goji Berries and Inflammation
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We hear all sorts of claims that goji berries are good for you. These little berries have been used medicinally for thousands of years in Asia.
Goji berries thought to good for your eyes. Traditionally goji berries have been used as an overall health tonic.
But what does modern science say. As a natural health blogger I need to refer my readers to various studies.
Although I don’t live and die by studies, I think they’re useful to my readers.
For instance, I don’t need an official medical sanction to enjoy a bowl of berries.
But I do need specific information for my readers, to let them know if something has been proven by science.
There isn’t a whole lot of research on goji berries. But the little information we do have is encouraging.
One 2014 study published in the Drugs, Development, Design and Therapy medical journal noted the long history of using goji berries in Asia, both as food and as medicine.
The authors also believe goji berries are genuinely good for us. “Several clinical studies in healthy subjects show that consumption of wolfberry juice improves general well being and immune functions,” they stated.
But what about inflammation?
Actually, the authors of this study noted that the berries seem to contain anti-inflammatory agents, adding, “Moreover, LBPs exhibit hypolipidemic, cardioprotective, antiviral, and antiinflammatory activities.”
In the article goji berries were referred to as their scientific name, Lycium barbarum. Sometimes these little Asian berries are also called wolfberries. (That’s because they grow on the wolfberry plant.)
I was happy to hear that scientific evidence seems to regard these little berries as inflammation fighters.
This is good news for me. Because I need to rotate my natural remedies. Otherwise my remedies stop working. So goji berries are another remedy I could add to my rotation.
Are Goji Berries Good for You?
Pound for pound, goji berries are packed with nutrients and antioxidants. This is why they’re often referred to as a “super food.”
I prefer getting my vitamins and minerals from nutrient rich foods, instead of a bottle. I do take a food based vitamin supplement about once a week. But I think the more natural way to receive nutrition is just by eating.
So what nutrients are contained in a one ounce serving of goji berries?
Goji berries are surprisingly high in protein, compared to other berries. For instance, a 1/4 cup serving contains about 9 grams of protein.
Compare this to blueberries, for instance, which have less than 1 gram of protein for the same size serving.
Nutrition in Goji Berries
Some people consider goji berries a superfood. I’m not sure who determines what plants are superfoods. But these little berries are often placed into that category.
Goji are rich in antioxidants. (All edible berries are.) These berries also a really good source of natural Vitamin C. This is different from ascorbic acid, added to multivitamins and many processed foods.
Real vitamin C comes from food. Ascorbic acid is made in the laboratory. It’s a compound derived from Vitamin C. But it’s not the same thing as whole Vitamin C.
Goji berries are very rich in Vitamin A. A 1/4 cup serving contains 180 percent of your RDA for this crucial nutrient, according to the authority health site Livestrong.
Vitamin A is good for your eyes. When I was little my grandmother used to tell me to eat my carrots, for my eyes.
One of the traditional uses of goji berries is as an eye remedy.
Goji berries are also a good source of zinc and iron.
Where To Find Goji Berries
You can find goji berries at your local health food store, and possibly also at your local grocery store. You can also order them online.
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