Blueberries are popular due to the numerous health benefits they provide. Be it in skin care products, cheesecakes, or muffins and cookies, the uses of blueberry as an ingredient are endless. And recently, blueberry juice has been gaining demand with health food fanatics.
Blueberries are indigo-colored berries bearing from perennial flowering plants. They belong to the Cyanococcus class within the genus Vaccinium group. Blueberries are indigenous to North America and are one the exponentially cultivated berries in the world today.
Nutritional Facts of Blueberry Juice
Loaded with antioxidants, blueberry juice benefits health tremendously. A large part of its health benefits is because of the presence of antioxidants.
Blueberry Juice Nutrition Chart
It contains flavonoids, vitamins C, K and E, potassium, and manganese in significant amounts. It also has trace amounts of vitamins A and B, omega-3 and -6 fatty acids, and minerals such as calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, and copper. Blueberry juice is low in saturated fats, cholesterol, and sodium, which makes it a healthy drink.
A serving of 240 milliliters of blueberry juice contains 14% DV of dietary fiber, 24% DV of vitamin C, 36% DV of vitamin K, and 25% DV of manganese. Other nutrients include two percent DV of iron, magnesium, phosphorus, vitamin A, folate, and zinc; three percent DV of potassium and niacin; four percent DV of vitamin E, copper, thiamin, riboflavin, and vitamin B6.
11 Benefits of Blueberry Juice
Considered as “superfood,” blueberries are sweet and nutritious fruits. They are excellent sources of antioxidants and low in calories, too. These benefits make blueberry juice a perfect and “sweet” way to detox the body. A glass of blueberry juice holds many health benefits.
Here are 11 benefits of blueberry juice
1. May aid in weight loss
Blueberries are sweet in taste but low in calorie content. The properties in its juice help break down sugars. A study conducted by the University of Michigan on rats shows that blueberries can reduce fat in the body. These berries impact the way the body stores and breaks down sugars. Therefore, blueberry juice benefits weight loss.
2. Contains antioxidants
Blueberries contain antioxidants, especially low-bush blueberries. The primary antioxidant found in blueberries are flavonoids. Blueberries have a rich source of a group of flavonoids called anthocyanins.
Blueberry juice with its antioxidant properties, can protect body cells from free radical damage, and thereby prevent premature aging. It may also reduce cancer risk. Blueberries are also a good source of vitamin E, which is a powerful antioxidant.
3. Reduces blood pressure
A scientific study conducted on women with menopause revealed that daily consumption of blueberries or blueberry juice benefits hypertension and arterial stiffness conditions.
4. Prevents heart diseases
Regular consumption of this juice can reduce blood pressure and lower low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol levels. Low-density lipoprotein can pose a threat to heart health when they enter endothelium and become oxidized. The accumulation of oxidized LDL particles leads to atherosclerosis, a condition in which the artery walls thicken with fat.
Blueberry juice contains anthocyanins that can reduce the risk of heart attack or stroke. Good amounts of vitamin K in blueberries helps to lower the chances of heart disease.
5. Manages diabetes
Blueberries are inherently sweet, yet their bioactive compounds help control diabetes. The flavonoids (anthocyanins) in them have a positive effect on insulin sensitivity and glucose metabolism. So, people with diabetes can drink a glass of blueberry juice to curb insulin spikes and lower blood sugar levels. However, people taking diabetes medications should practice caution, as this may lead to hypoglycemia. They should consult their doctor before introducing this juice into their regular diet regime.
6. Fights UTI:
Like cranberry juice, there are benefits to drinking blueberry juice for UTI. Blueberries contain bioactive substances that can potentially fight urinary tract infection. These bioactive substances are anti-adhesives and hinder bacteria like E. coli from clinging to the bladder walls. It is recommended to drink at least a glass of this juice daily to help treat UTI.
7. Improves cognitive health
Blueberry juice benefits brain health as well. Since it can reduce oxidative damage to body cells, it can lessen the risk of brain diseases associated with cell degeneration.
8. Relieves muscle fatigue
A chilled glass of this juice after an intense workout could be more than just refreshing. Blueberries may help to reduce muscle fatigue and soreness. Their anti-inflammatory properties can reduce oxidative stress and treat local inflammation. Vitamin K in blueberries helps in bone development.
9. Improves eye health
The antioxidants in blueberries can boost eye health. It can prevent age-related eye defects like cataracts, macular degeneration, and xerophthalmia by reducing free radical damage. Blueberry juice has traces of vitamin A, including retinol and beta-carotene, and a good amount of vitamin C, both of which boost eye health.
10. Inhibits DNA damage
Oxidative DNA damage is a part of daily life and is the reason we grow old. Oxidative damage may also lead to cancer growth. Drinking blueberry juice may be beneficial to impede free radical damage to the DNA and to inhibit tumor growth.
11. Relieves constipation
Blueberries are well-known natural laxatives. They contain anti-inflammatory agents that help reduce intestinal inflammation. Since they work as a laxative, drinking blueberry juice benefits a bad case of constipation.
Healthy Blueberry Juice Recipes
Blueberry juice is quite nutritious and healthy. With hot weather just around the corner, you can have it as a delicious detox drink in the summer. Here are two simple and healthy blueberry juice recipes for you to try.
Blueberry Juice with Cabbage Recipe
- ¼ medium red cabbage, sliced
- 1 large cucumber, peeled and cut into chunks
- Blueberries, fresh
- 1 cup of fresh blueberries
- 1 large apple, cut into eighths
- Ice cubes (optional)
Place blueberries, chopped apples, cabbage, and cucumbers into a juicer or blender. Blend the ingredients until smooth.
Put ice cubes in in a glass, and pour the blueberry juice over it. Serve chilled.
Blueberry Green Juice Recipe
- 2 cups of fresh blueberries
- 2 cups of fresh spinach leaves
- 2 Fuji apples
First, clean the spinach leaves thoroughly. Then, chop the spinach leaves and the Fuji apples into pieces.
Put blueberries, chopped apples, and spinach into a juicer and blend until smooth.
Chill before serving.
Side Effects of Blueberry Juice
The side effects of blueberry juice are not very adverse. However, it can have some inconvenient effects on some people.
Here are four side effects to note.
1. Induces salicylate sensitivity
Blueberry juice has high amounts of salicylates, an active substance found in aspirin. Individuals who are sensitive or suffer from salicylates intolerance can develop stomach rashes and gastrointestinal problems with over-consumption of this juice.
2. Causes hypoglycemia
Blueberry juice helps with diabetes as it can reduce blood sugar levels. But, too much consumption of blueberry juice could cause a major drop in the blood sugar level and lead to hypoglycemia, a condition in which the glucose level drops down abnormally in the blood.
3. Hampers certain organs
Blueberries contain tannins in trace amounts. Tannins are excellent antioxidants, but they interfere with starch digestion. Tannins tend to bind starch, which is required by the body to produce serotonin. A lack of serotonin in people who are extremely sensitive to their serotonin levels can cause headaches and migraines.
4. Affects surgeries
Since blueberry juice consumption can influence blood sugar levels, it is recommended to avoid eating blueberries or drinking blueberry juice before and after surgery to maintain a balanced blood sugar level.
Although blueberry juice has its side effects, it is still considered a “superfood.” Drinking blueberry juice is a convenient way to get a decent dose of antioxidants and other amazing health benefits. However, it is crucial to drink blueberry juice in moderation.
It is a potent blood sugar regulator and can lower it below normal levels, especially if you already are on diabetes medications. Due to its rich antioxidant content and good amounts of vitamins C and E, blueberry juice could be a vital part of a balanced diet, especially in the morning or after a workout.
- Blueberries for Parkinson’s Treatment
- Muscadine Juice: Nutrition, Benefits & Recipes
- How Long Do Blueberries Last? How to Differentiate Bad Blueberries
“Blueberries, raw Nutrition Facts & Calories,” SELF NutritionData; http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/fruits-and-fruit-juices/1851/2.
Marchione, V., “10 health benefits of drinking blueberry juice,” Bel Marra Health, April 19, 2016; http://www.belmarrahealth.com/10-health-benefits-of-drinking-blueberry-juice/
“Procyanidin, anthocyanin, and chlorogenic acid contents of highbush and lowbush blueberries” US National Libary of Medicine, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22175691 , last accessed Apr 19, 2016.
“Polyphenols: Benefits to the Cardiovascular System in Health and in Aging” US National Libary of Medicine, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3820045/ , last accessed Apr 19, 2016.