All Summer long we've been enjoying this tasty berry and learning as much as we can about the small super fruit with big health benefits!
- There are two types of blueberries, high bush and low bush.
High bush blueberries are what you buy at the local grocery store or farmers market.
Low bush blueberries are used to make juices and jams and are a little sweeter.
- 10 states grow 98 percent of the U.S blueberries. Those states are: California, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Michigan, Mississippi, New Jersey, North Carolina, Oregon and Washington.
- Blueberries are colored blue because of the antioxidant anthocyanins.
In addition to giving blueberries their fun color, the antioxidants found in blueberries work to make this fruit a “super fruit” providing many health benefits. From the potential to lower the risk of heart disease and cancer to the ability to improve memory and cognition, this small berry packs a big punch!
At Northbridge, our Eat Fresh, Eat Local program insures that our residents get fresh blueberries from local farms to improve brain health. Our Memory Making Baking program combines healthy ingredients and a resident's favorite recipe to spark memory and joy from the scents, tastes and fun of baking. Here, residents at Avita make blueberry bread pudding.
Studies have found that eating blueberries improves memory and cognitive function in older adults. This is because berry fruits change the way neurons in the brain communicate, preventing inflammation in the brain that contributes to neural damage and improving both motor control and cognition.
According to a 2002 study by the US Agricultural Research Service, by simply adding blueberries to your diet you are increasing the birth rate of cells in the hippocampus, the region of the brain that is responsible for memory.
Most research has found that blueberries are most helpful and effective in treating those who are already experiencing cognitive decline versus those who are not but it’s never too early to start including this memory boosting snack into your diet!
Don’t take our word for it, peak blueberry season for most of the country is mid-June to mid-August- so get out and get picking!