Blackberries are a powerful fruit

Blackberries are rich in nutrients.

Berries have been found to have some of the highest antioxidant levels of any fresh fruits. Fresh berries are some of the most powerful disease fighting foods available and most find people them delicious. Berries contain color pigments that are powerful antioxidants. The blue, purple and red colors are associated with a lower risk of certain cancers, urinary tract health, memory function and healthy aging. Michigan State University Extension says that antioxidants are substances that breakdown free radicals in the body which damage cells and are a source of disease and aging.

Blackberries are not really berries. They are an aggregate fruit like raspberries and are made up of tiny seeds encased in fleshy fruit, called drupelets. A one cup serving provides half of the daily recommendation for vitamin C and is a good source of dietary fiber, manganese and vitamin K, all for just 62 calories. Dietary fiber helps to maintain a healthy gastrointestinal tract, lower blood cholesterol, reduce heart disease and may help to prevent certain cancers.

Blackberries peak time is in June and July, when they display a plump berry with deep, even color and a sweet juice with a bit of tartness. They do not continue to ripen after being picked, so select only ripe berries. Blackberries will mold quickly and will last about one week. Refrigeration is recommended. Blackberries are very versatile and can be found in juices, desserts, wines, as well as added to cereal, yogurt, smoothies, quick-breads and salads.

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