Originally published January 18 2011
Bring happiness to your life with the ancient nutritious goji berry
by Alex Malinsky aka RawGuru
(NaturalNews) Grown in the hills and valleys of Tibet, Mongolia and China for 6000 years, goji berries have long attained an esteemed place in the East Asian household. Indeed, they are used as a food and medicine. In the Chinese language the word goji is a derivative. The brightly colored orange and red berry is so dubbed because it is said that if you eat a handful every morning it will induce a mellow or happy mood all day long. Therefore, goji berries are also known as happy berries.
Imagine the taste of a fully ripe cherry; now make the taste slightly less sweet with a hint of sour. You are imagining the taste of the balanced flavor of the powerful goji berry. The treasure of the goji berry is its medley of antioxidants, 21 trace minerals, beta carotene (more than carrots), vitamins such as C (higher than oranges) and B1, B2 and B6; it packs a punch in the nutritional department. However, the beauty of its complementary nature is that it is unassuming enough in taste so that it does not overwhelm the palate. You will find yourself gobbling them down in such oblivious pleasure that before you know it your container is empty. They are the perfect snack.
If you are new to goji berries, add them incrementally into your diet to gradually build and sustain their healthful benefits. This is preferential to bombarding the body by consuming large quantities in an attempt to quickly obtain the goji mojo, so to speak. Goji berries power the immune system by helping it to withstand strain and exertion, and they may slow the effects of aging, defend the liver, assist in vision health and improvement, and build the circulatory and cardiovascular systems. However, excess quantities can potentially affect allergies and interact with high blood pressure medicine. As usual, if in doubt, consult with your physician.
And just so you know, on the Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity or ORAC scale, developed by physician and chemist Dr. Guohua Cao at the National Institute on Aging in Baltimore, goji berries rate number one with a score of 25,300 ORAC units. This means that goji berries have high antioxidant power. They go after the free radicals to neutralize and destroy them with a capacity higher than other well-respected superfood fruits such as blueberries, strawberries and prunes. These are the fruits purported to aid in fighting and preventing cancer and other auto-immune diseases.
The wonderful goji berry is available raw and as a juice. But try it blended into your daily smoothie or brewed in a hot beverage, or substitute goji berries wherever you would typically use raisins. Add it to your soup pot and you will discover a secret the Asian cultures have known for centuries...goji berries make for uncommonly delicious soup stones.
About the authorAlex Malinsky aka RawGuru is an award winning chef and one of the leading experts in the field of raw food. He started to learn about raw foods at the early at of 15. After 10 years on the raw food diet he continues to be on the cutting edge of nutritional research and product development. Visit Alex's website at: www.RawGuru.com for more information.
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