The pigments that give berries their beautiful black, blue and red colors are also good for your health. Berries contain phytochemicals andflavanoids that may help to prevent some forms of cancer. Cranberries and blueberries contain a substance that may prevent bladder infections.Eating a diet rich in blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, cranberries and strawberries may help to reduce your risk of several types of cancers. Blueberries and raspberries also containlutien, which is important for healthy vision.
Most grocery stores carry a wide variety of fresh, canned and frozen berries. Look for ripe, colorful and firm berries with no sign of mold or mushy spots. Berries can also be found in the frozen section of your grocery store. Once berries thaw, they will not be as firm as freshly picked berries, but they remain delicious and good for you.
For the freshest berries, try growing berries right in your own back yard as one local Carroll County gardener has done in this picture or you can visit your local farmers market that offer berries harvested that same day. Some local berry farms allow you to pick your own berries.
Ideas for Serving Berries
Most berries are sweet enough to be served just as they are; however, here are some more ideas:
·Top a bowl of berries with a dollop of light-whipped topping and a sprinkling of chopped pecans or walnuts
·Add berries to a bowl of whole grain cereal
·Sprinkle berries on a salad
·Stir fresh berries into vanilla yogurt
·Combine frozen berries with bananas and low-fat milk to make a smoothie