Food Fact Fridays!

soy milk and blueberries
Image via Wikipedia


 Blueberries are native to North America.  Native Americans are believed to have given blueberries to the pilgrims to help them through their first winter.  The Indians believed the blueberry or “star berries” were sent by the great spirits to curb the children’s hunger during the famine.  The berries, along with the leaves were also used to cure ailments among the tribes.

 In the early 1900’s, a man by the name of Dr. Frederick Coville and a woman by the name of Elizabeth White, both of Whitesbog, NJ,  combed the forests of the Northeast to select different blueberry plants with highly desirable properties in trying to domesticate the wild highbush blueberry to create new varieties.  In 1916 they succeeded with their first commercial crop of the blueberries that are still enjoyed today.

 Something I learned, and never knew, the blueberry is part of the family that includes flowering azalea, mountain laurel and heather.  All of these plants, including the blueberry, thrive in acidic soil, love water, and cooler climates.  Dozens of varieties of blueberries are being grown across the US, Canada, and South America, with 90% of the crops produced are found in Michigan, New Jersey, Oregon, North Carolina, Georgia and Washington.

 Research suggests that blueberries are high in antioxidants.  Antioxidants help to neutralize unstable molecules linked to several diseases including cancer, cardio-vascular disease and age-related conditions like Alzheimer’s.  It has been found that blueberries help in healthy brain functions.  A diet that is rich in blueberries may aid in recovering the loss of balance and co-ordination as well as improving short-term memory loss.

 Blueberries sound like a pretty powerful fruit.   A recommended serving is 1 cup.  That is one half of the government’s suggested 2 cups of fruit a day.  That one cup of blueberries has over 14 mg of vitamin C and only .5 grams of fat.  Blueberries are very versatile.  You can use them in sweet and savory dishes so incorporating them into your diet will be easy.

 I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!



About thestubbiechef

I am married to the greatest man, Brad, who also happens to be the "bestest" friend ever! He loves that my hobby is food, because, well, he loves food! He encourages me and helps me out in the kitchen from time to time. Baking has become a new passion for me. It seems that I make pretty good pies. I like to make cookies as well. I tried my hand at cupcakes, but I don't have the patience to play the waiting game. I have always loved to cook. My Memom is my main influence. I had the pleasure of living with her on 2 separate occasions and learned a lot by just watching and helping. She was also the kind of cook who could open the pantry and throw together something pretty quick. I was so glad that I picked up on that skill. Some of my better meals have been the ones that I just "threw together" what I could scrounge up in the pantry and fridge. Italian cuisine is my first love, growing up in an Italian family and being from New Jersey. I also have dabbled a little in Asian cooking. I am getting pretty good at pork fried rice. My husband grew up in the south, for the most part, so I have been trying my hand at things like chicken fried steak, biscuits and gravy, and the likes. Living in Texas has opened doors into Mexican cuisine, but I think I will leave the tortilla making to the experts. I love to get new recipes and to share new recipes that I have discovered. That is why I wanted to start this blog! I hope to share my experience with others who also love to cook! I hope that you enjoy what you read and keep coming back!

Posted on April 29, 2011, in Blueberries, Food, Nutrition, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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