Strawberries have been considered a ‘superfood’ for a long time. It isn’t just their flavour and summery smell that makes them so popular, they should be included in a balanced diet for their amazing health benefits. They contain nutrients necessary for a smooth function of the cardiovascular system, stabilising blood sugar, production of collagen, supporting the immune system and contributing to the overall strength of all organs. They contain a great amount of vitamin C, manganese, fibre, iodine, biotin, potassium, copper, magnesium, phosphorus, folate, vitamin B6 and omega-3 fats.
Each of these nutrients plays an important role in keeping a healthy body and overall quality of life, including the ability to minimise the risk of cancer or eye disease. If you eat at least 15 strawberries every day it may even improve your vision and save you from tired eyes syndrome and overall fatigue. They can slow down the ageing process and this way also help maintain good vision for longer. So what makes them so powerful?
High amount of vitamin C
One cup of fresh ripe strawberries can provide you with a whole daily recommended amount of vitamin C. This precious vitamin can determine the ability of your body to fight with harmful pathogens. Unlike other animals, humans depend on the external intake of vitamin C. The daily recommended intake is 90 mg for men and 75 mg for women if they are non-smokers. Smokers need an extra 35 mg. This of course also dependent on age, weight, ongoing illness and other characteristics of each person. The required amount is higher when a person is exposed to pollution, stress or other detrimental factors. Without vitamin C the body losses the natural ability of regeneration and leads to decay of tissue.
The sufficient amount of the vitamin C maintains correct cells function and their reproduction. For this reason, it has been widely used in alternative cancer treatment. Since the 1970s vitamin C has been studied as a supportive cancer treatment. High doses of the vitamin have been proven beneficial in assisting the traditional treatment and minimising the negative side effects of chemotherapy. Antioxidants, in general, are known to protect the body from free radicals and cell damage, which is also believed to help in cancer prevention.
No doubt, Vitamin C is powerful but how can it influence our vision?
This vitamin supports the natural production of collagen. Collagen is a protein which acts as connective tissue in a body, providing elasticity and strength of skin, bones, cartilage, teeth, gums, and the eye cornea. During the ageing process, the production of collagen slows down and leads to a weakening tissue structure and dehydrated skin, causing wrinkles and poor vision. Eating strawberries may slow down ageing and help to keep better vision for longer thanks to its generous amount of vitamin C.
The creation of collagen is just one of many examples vitamin C offers. The vitamin is found in the whole eye lens and is necessary for its correct function. It is best to consume via raw foods as its water soluble and the amount decreases while cooking.
Strawberries are a great source of polyphenols
Polyphenols are chemicals naturally occurring in plants. Consumed as food, they have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and vasodilation (widening the blood vessels) attributes. They help to keep diabetes, cancer, obesity, Alzheimer’s, cardiovascular diseases and digestion problems away.
Strawberries contain many types of polyphenols, one of the better-known ones is probably resveratrol. Recently, this compound has been used in the cosmetic industry to fight the ageing of the skin. The anti-ageing properties may also help in cells restoration and keep a good vision for longer.
They can stabilise blood sugar
There is a very tight connection between diabetes and worsening eyesight. The health of the whole body always affects the eyes as a very sensitive organ. The body’s lower ability to regulate sugar levels can threaten the function of the eye blood vessels, and lead to blurred vision temporarily or permanently. This may be the first sign of diabetes which is closely associated with eye diseases like Diabetic Retinopathy, Glaucoma or Cataracts.
Strawberries contain a good amount of biotin and fibre, which are recommended for stabilisation of glucose levels in both types of diabetes and save our eyes.
Promotes good digestion
Our body processes all nutrients and vitamins through the digestion process, during which the components are broken down into chemicals and via the bloodstream distributed to our organs. To remain healthy, a smooth digestion is a must.
Strawberries have a very generous amount of potassium which together with fibre makes them one of the best helpers to reduce constipation. Both are the most important nutrients essential for the right colon function and effective distribution of vitamins and minerals into the blood.
Constipation can be a sign of internal dryness. An eye is mostly dependent on water, from the inside of eyeball as well as outside. But sometimes drinking enough water is not the only solution for this. To maintain a regular moisture of the body and the eye, it’s important to take care of the right diet. Foods like strawberries, supporting proper digestion, will do this job for you without the need for aggressive laxative in most cases.
Strawberry plant (Fragaria Ananassa) belongs to the rose family and is grown in mild to warm climate conditions. The three biggest producers are the USA, Turkey and Spain, whether frozen or fresh they supply most of the world. The best option is to enjoy them fresh and full ripe just as a snack or in a smoothie. They are used in many delicious desserts and salads as well. Rightfully, they belong to the most popular fruit in the world.