The end of May marks the beginning of strawberry season! Look for fresh, locally grown, and organic strawberries in farmers’ markets and grocery stores.
Strawberries are an excellent source of Vitamin C, potassium and fibre as well as being low in calories, therefore great for snacking. According to Toronto-based registered dietitian Madeleine Edwards one serving of strawberries contains 51.5 mg of vitamin C, which is about half of your daily requirement, so consuming a full cup would get you 100% of your daily requirement. Vitamin C is known for its benefit on the immune system, vision, and collagen production, so foods high in Vitamin C, such as strawberries is very beneficial for the skin, the eyes, as well as our immune system.
Aside from containing vitamin C, strawberries also contain powerful heart-health boosters, Ellagic acid and flavonoids/phytochemicals, which provide an antioxidant effect that can benefit heart health in various ways, explains Edwards. Th first benefit is counteracting the effect of low-density lipoprotein, or LDL, bad cholesterol in the blood-which causes plaque to build up in arteries. A second way is the anti-inflammatory effect that it provides, which is also good for the heart. Researchers at the Clinical Nutrition and Risk Factor Modification Center in Toronto studied the effect of strawberries on a cholesterol-lowering diet and concluded that adding strawberries to the diet reduced oxidative damage, as well as blood lipids-both of which play a role in heart disease and diabetes.
How to add strawberries to your diet
1. You can have strawberries as a snack during your day
2. Add it to your oatmeal or yogurt in the morning to make your breakfast more nutritious
3. You can add fresh or frozen strawberries to add a delicious flavour to smoothies. Strawberries may be frozen whole or sliced, with or without sugar, for up to twelve months.
4. Add fresh strawberries to salads with kale, or spinach