Fruits are one of Mother Nature’s greatest gifts – they’re mostly sweet, tasty, delicious, and packed with nutrition and fiber. They’re best enjoyed eaten raw, but there are more ways that we will benefit from the goodness of fruits (and also vegetables), such as juicing them.
Aside from vitamins and fiber, fruits are also rich in natural antioxidants.
What are antioxidants?
Antioxidants are substances naturally found in and produced by the human body. They are also abundant in foods, including fruits, vegetables, nuts, whole grains, and some meats, fish, and poultry.
Antioxidants help prevent or slow down damage to cells caused by free radicals. Free radicals are unstable molecules that the body produces as a reaction to environmental and other pressures.
Oxidation is a chemical reaction that generate free radicals that can damage cells in the body. When the cells are damaged, it may significantly contribute to aging and a variety of illnesses.
So, to keep your body healthy and to slow down the effects of aging, you should have a diet rich in antioxidants, such as vegetables and fruits.
Fruits that are rich in antioxidants
Some fruits have more concentration of antioxidants than others. If you’re looking for the most nutritious fruits for juicing, you should look for the ones with the highest antioxidant content.
Currently, the most reliable test for measuring the antioxidant content of foods is the ferric reducing ability of plasma (FRAP) analysis. The higher the FRAP value, the more antioxidants that food has, thus being more effective in neutralizing a specific free radical.
Check out certain the following fruits that have high levels of antioxidants:
Recent studies suggest that blueberries are packed with antioxidants and nutrients that may help protect cells from damage and lower inflammation.
Based on the FRAP analysis, blueberries may contain up to 9.2 millimoles (mmol) of antioxidants per 3.5 ounces (100 grams)
Other studies even conclude that blueberries have the highest concentration of antioxidants among all the commonly consumed fruits and vegetables. In addition to the antioxidants, blueberries contain many vitamins and minerals known to fortify the immune system. They contain phytochemicals that may help prevent certain illnesses, such as heart disease and even cancer.
Strawberries are probably the most popular berries on the planet. They are in vitamin C and antioxidants. The FRAP analysis reveals that strawberries may contain up to 5.4 mmol of antioxidants per 3.5 ounces.
Furthermore, strawberries contain a certain type of antioxidant called anthocyanin, which give the fruits their red color. The higher the concentration of anthocyanin, the brighter and more vivid the redness. The anthocyanins may help reduce the risk of heart disease by cutting down “bad” cholesterol.
Raspberries may contain up to 4 mmol of antioxidants per 3.5 ounces, according to the FRAP analysis.
These tart and brightly colored berries also contain phytochemicals called ellagic acid, which may help prevent cancer-causing agents derived from the diet and the environment. Like strawberries, raspberries contain anthocyanins.
One of the newest “superfoods” that have been trending among health buffs these days, goji berries do live up to the social media hype.
Goji berries are the fruits of either of the two closely related plants, Lycium barbarum or Lycium chinense. Goji berries have been part of traditional Chinese medicine for over 2,000 years and now are making waves in the Western world.
Goji berries have high antioxidants, containing up to 4.3 mmol of them per 3.5 ounces. In addition, these exotic berries contain unique antioxidants known as Lycium barbarum polysaccharides, which help reduce the risk of certain cancers and heart illnesses. These antioxidants are also known to retard aging.
Goji berries are usually sold dried, although they can also be sold fresh that makes them perfect for juicing.
These sweet-sour fruits have high levels of vitamin C and K as well as copper, iron, potassium, and dietary fiber while being quite low on calories. They are also packed with antioxidants and are proven by some studies as having the highest amounts of antioxidants, even more than blueberries have.
Sour plum juice is an excellent and enjoyable way to get all the healthy benefits of this fruit. When served cold, it will be an unbeatable thirst-quencher on a sweltering summer day.