The #7 Diet Tip in our ongoing series on foods that can help with the health of your back is Berries. You may remember in Tip #5 that we discussed why Cherries are a great food for your back; and while cherries and berries are not related (cherries are related to plums, peaches, and almonds), berries are also a great food because they contain some of the same substances that cherries do which can help to improve your back health.
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The most important substance they have are antioxidants; and while all fruits and vegetables contain them to some degree, berries are some of the best sources for powerful antioxidants and contain several different ones, such as anthocyanins and vitamin C. Among other things, these antioxidants can help protect the cells in your body, reduce inflammation, and aid in joint flexibility. So you can see why they are so helpful for your back!
Another postive thing about berries is that they are mostly water! Keeping properly hydrated is essential to keeping your back healthy, so eating foods with high water content is a plus. And most berries are around 85% water!
But one of the best things about berries is that there are so many of them! So if there is one type that you don't like the taste of, there is bound to be another one that you do. The best berries for your health are:
- and even Boysenberries!
Here are a couple tasty recipes involving berries that you can make at home!
(NOTE: All ingredients in these recipes are preferred fresh!)
Easy Blueberry Pancakes
Serving size about 8 pancakes
- 1 Large Egg
- ⅔ Cup Milk
- 2 Tablespoons Vegetable Oil
- 1 - 1¼ Cups OR 5.5 ounce Package of All-Purpose Baking Mix
- 1 Cup Blueberries
In a small bowl, lightly beat the egg, then stir in the milk and oil. Add that to the baking mix and stir until moistened, then mix in the berries. Heat up your griddle and lightly grease it, when ready pour about ¼ cup of the batter onto the griddle for each pancake. Cook each side until it bubbles and the edges get browned. Serve immediately with whatever toppings you like!
Berry Fruit Salad
Serving size about 8
First, make the Berry Puree. Add the raspberries, strawberries, orange juice, and lemon juice into a blender and puree until smooth, then cover and refrigerate. Puree should be removed from the refrigerator 3 hours before serving.
Next comes the Lemon Sauce. In a medium bowl, gradually stir together lemon curd and sour cream. Then transfer to a serving dish, cover, and refrigerate until it is time to serve.
Third is combining the berries. To make sure they are room temperature when served, the berries should be removed from the refrigerator 3 hours beforehand. One hour before serving, combine the strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and Berry Puree in a large bowl and toss. When ready, cover and let stand at room temperature.
Finally, just before serving, add the raspberries to the bowl and toss gently. Serve each portion of berries topped with the lemon sauce, about 2½ tablespoons per serving.