This time on the superfood series, I’ve decided to write about goji berries. I LOVE the taste and texture of them and I eat them a few times a week. Contrary to popular belief, they’re not expensive either. I buy them in bulk at my local bulk food health store.
BEFORE I BEGIN: If you are on any medication of any kind, you should check with your doctor before trying goji berries as they have potential to interact with some prescription meds.
What is a Goji Berry?
A goji berry is a fruit that usually comes in a dried form. That’s how I eat them, anyway. They grow in China and have often been used for medicinal purposes. One of the most common uses for treatment is for kidneys. While I still think you should see your doctor before trying any alternative treatments, Goji berries really do pack a lot of benefits into such a small fruit.
Vitamins A and C
Goji berries have so much vitamin A that you should actually never eat more than a 1/4 of them a day. In fact, 1/4 cup has approximately 140% of your daily recommended Vitamin A intake and anywhere from 35-163% of your Vitamin C intake (source). Now, even though they could potentially push you over your Vitamin C intake as well, it is more important to pay attention to your Vitamin A intake as too much can cause Vitamin A toxicity. If you’re eating roughly a tablespoon a day, this small amount can really help your body. Vitamin C is good for overall health and immunity while Vitamin A protects you from free radicals.
Phytonutrients are nutrients like beta-carotene, antioxidants, etc. They can sometimes be hard to get from a modern diet. Though they are not necessarily essential to get certain amounts into our bodies like carbs, fats and proteins, phytonutrients are still important. Goji berries are PACKED with phytonutrients. It’s these nutrients that are often responsible for the benefits you see listed on Pinterest infographics. While you’d have to eat quite a few goji berries (not recommended) to see drastic changes, the phytonutrients in this superfood can have a noticeable positive overall impact on your health when consumed regularly thanks to phytonutrients.
This one is especially for you, vegans and vegetarians! Despite what they might tell you, vegans are often undernourished. The truth is that iron is very hard to extract from plant sources and you often have to eat a TON of that food to get the same amount of iron you could get in eating a piece of meat the size of your palm. Now before you send me hate comments, let me say that it is possible to get almost all your nutrients from a plant-based diet (you’ll still be short on B12 but you can get shots or supplements for that). Thanks to some superfoods like goji berries, vegans can still stay healthy while avoiding meat and animal products. There is 38% your daily recommended intake of iron in 100g of goji berries (source). Even better is that this food also contains Vitamin C, which aids in the absorption of iron in your body! So not only do goji berries have important nutrients but they also have a sort of built-in system to ensure your body is extracting the nutrients properly. Now that’s pretty cool.
Where to Buy and How to Use
I buy goji berries at my local bulk health food store. They’re very affordable when bought in bulk and honestly, they DO NOT need to be organic or have any fancy brand attached to them. A goji berry is a goji berry, no matter where you get it so you may as well save your money.
To eat them, I often just keep it simple. I suppose you could try cooking with them but I prefer to eat them as part of my favourite trail mix or on top of a smoothie bowl. Gogi berries are not just super healthy, they’re also a beautiful food. So if you use them as a smoothie bowl topping take a pic and upload on Instagram (use #lovewellnessblog so I can show your post some love).
Thanks for reading my post and have a great day! If you’d like to read about more of my favourite superfoods, click here.Follow Me: