Blueberry Juice

Blueberries

Photo by: Basheer Tome

Sometimes referred to as a “brain boosting food,” blueberries are truly an amazing little fruit. I am not entirely sure if eating them has made me any smarter, that might be too big of a challenge for any food, but, I do feel that adding blueberries into my diet has been a smart choice.

For one thing, this widely studied fruit is packed full of various phytochemicals and antioxidants. Blueberries (and especially wild varieties) have some of the highest antioxidant capacities of nearly all other fruits and vegetables.

With their beautiful deep blue color, blueberries provide as many as five different types of anthocyanins that work as antioxidants in the body to help fight damage by free radicals.

Research also suggests the anthocyanins found in berries possess ant-inflammatory and neuroprotective properties.

 Blueberry Juice Nutrition

  •  Blueberries are low in fat and full of dietary fiber.
  • One serving of blueberries provides about 25% of the U.S. daily requirement for vitamin c.
  •  Blueberries are an excellent source of manganese, which plays a role in bone development and helps to convert carbohydrates, protein and fats from food into usable energy.
  • Blueberries contain a stillbenoid called pterostilbene (terro-STILL-bean [the"p" is silent]), which is chemically related to resveratrol, a type of natural phenol being studied for potential benefits.

Blueberry Juicing Tips

Other than picking out any foreign objects (leaves, stems, etc.) and rinsing before use, blueberries need no other preparation for juicing. Depending on the equipment, it might be best to set the juicer at low-speed to extract the most juice. Refer to your juice machine manufactures best recommendations for juicing this type of fruit. I have had good luck adding a small amount of clean water at the last stage of juicing to help wash through any remaining  pulp and maximize the amount of juice collected.

 

Blueberry Juice Combinations

Blueberries juice well with other berries like cranberry, blackberry and strawberry. Add blueberries to apple, orange, pineapple or pear juice for a delicious, richly colored drink.

 

Blueberry Selection

Blueberries should look dry. The powdery substance found on fresh blueberries is called bloom and is a sign of freshness. When picking berries from clear containers at the grocery, avoid berries that seem wet, shriveled, clumped together or have any signs of mold. Look at berry color for ripeness.  Try to pick only deep purple-blue to blue-black colored berries. Reddish berries are not ripe, and will not ripen any further once picked.

 

Blueberry Storage

Refrigerate fresh blueberries as soon as you can. Fresh blueberries should keep for 5-7 days in your refrigerator. To prevent premature spoilage, refrain from washing berries until ready for use. Fresh blueberries can also be frozen. The experts recommend freezing without prior rinsing, as long as you wash the berries before use. Visit the National Center for Home Food Preservation website for information on freezing and preserving blueberries.

 

Spotlight on Blueberries [video]

About Chris Bede

With great interest in health topics, I research the latest trends in nutrition. Besides juicing daily, I'm currently a fan of the paleo diet. I may be the second largest consumer of grass-fed butter. You can follow me on twitter @cbede.