(NaturalHealth365) Many nutrition studies remind us that our digestive tract and gut health is the foundation of a strong immune system. In fact, an ideal balance of positive gut bacteria is crucial in keeping us healthy, especially as we age. Which is why we’ll talk about the health benefits of wild blueberry – today.
One of the most beneficial bacteria types for gut health is bifidobacteria. This helpful gut bacteria colonizes the digestive tract shortly after birth and helps to support the immune system. Reduction in bifidobacteria levels can occur with age, increasing the risk of improper bowel functioning, infections, and general ill health.
So, what does this have to do with wild blueberry? (I’m glad you asked … keep reading)
It’s important to be proactive about your gut health
Proper eating habits and nutrition are key to continued gut health. Research is now showing that one of the top foods for intestinal health and optimal balance in gut flora is the wild blueberry.
Blueberries are already well known for their high content of antioxidants and other life-sustaining compounds and vitamins. The benefits of eating blueberries regularly include improved vision, weight loss, cardiovascular health, urinary tract health and better brain functioning. However, 2013 research has found that consuming wild blueberries can also help to support ideal levels of the important bifidobacteria in the gut.
This study of wild blueberry consumption on gut health included 15 males between ages 37 and 55 who were healthy except for having one or more risk factors for cardiovascular disease. These men ate either the equivalent of one cup of wild blueberries (25 grams freeze-dried wild blueberry mixed in a drink), or a placebo daily for 6 weeks.
Daily wild blueberry consumption supports healthy bifidobacteria levels
Wild blueberries contains around 375 milligrams of a type of antioxidants called anthocyanins. After an additional six week flush out period, the groups switched their intake. (wild blueberries vs. placebo)
The men studied maintained their previous lifestyle and diet patterns throughout the study, but abstained from other foods containing the anthocyanin compound. The participants’ bifidobacteria levels were measured before and after each six week study period.
The blueberry benefits to gut health quickly became clear. Bifidobacteria levels rose significantly within the digestive tract when subjects were consuming the equivalent of one cup of wild blueberries per day. After six weeks, bifidobaceterium levels were raised by 6.7 percent in the wild blueberry eaters compared with a 1.7 percent decrease in the placebo group.
A closer look: Blueberry benefits just keeps growing
Bifidobaceterium gut bacteria has numerous benefits for overall health, including reducing inflammation and improving digestion, even in persons afflicted with celiac disease. Wild blueberries contain the beneficial compounds prebiotics, which help to nourish healthy intestinal bacteria and support and sustain gut health.
With the highest antioxidant content of all fruits and numerous other blueberry benefits, this potent superfood should be on everyone’s grocery list. Favor organic, wild blueberries whenever possible, and strive to eat them (or add them to your smoothie) at least four times per week.
Food & Nutrition
Natural Health 365
Natural Health 365 is a premium source of trending and popular health-related news, science, testimony & research articles on the most up to date and relevant natural health information. The Food & Nutrition articles found herein are meant to inform and advise our site visitors on eating healthy, nutritious foods and safely using supplements and vitamins to achieve optimal health.
Join thousands of daily visitors staying informed and involved on Natural Health 365! We seek out scientific solutions with proven results and it is our mission to keep you informed! Articles range in topic from the cancer fighting qualities of Olive Oil, to the remarkably high concentration of anti-oxidants found in blueberries, to how to make your own almond milk, to a nutritional comparison of organic vs conventional produce, to an analysis of the health benefits of tree nuts. You can find all of the Food News Articles here
Read Some of Our Most Popular Articles
Artichokes, Olive Oil, Almond Milk, Blueberries
More Food & Nutrition Articles
Fresh Organic Produce Fights Cancer, Susan G. Komen on Organic Foods, Hemp Seeds for Inflammation, Pau D’Arco For Improved Immunity
In addition to exploring health benefits of certain foods, vitamins and supplements, we also aim to connect healthy eating and balanced consumption of dietary supplements to long-lasting health and adding healthy, happy years to your life. For example, did you know that eating Granny Smith Apples on a regular basis can reduce your chance of building up unhealthy gut yeast? Or that ingesting ground hemp seeds can significantly reduce inflammation throughout the body? Perhaps you didn’t know that Fresh Organic Produce has been found to have higher concentrations of key, cancer-fighting anti-oxidants and vitamins than conventional produce? You can find all of that information and more right here on Natural Health 365.
We’d love to know what you’re thinking! Please join the conversation on Facebook, post comments here on the website and feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions.
Please use and share the articles you find here with your friends, family and peers.