and Their Benefits
Publish date:09 January 2017
Known as wild fruits by the ancient Greeks and Romans and highly valued in the Middle Ages, strawberries (Fragraria ananassa) have been grown in European gardens only since the 18th century, being in fact a hybrid between wild strawberries from North America and Chile.
Present on the shelves of the supermarkets as early as May, strawberries become truly juicy and tasty in June. This is the period when we can fully enjoy the multitude of benefits that these fruits provide. After all, they are considered some of the most nutritious fruits.
After blackberries, blueberries and raspberries, strawberries are, in fact, the fourth richest fruit in antioxidants. Antioxidants fight against cell aging by protecting them against the free radicals and thus reducing the occurrence of cardiovascular conditions, of strokes. They can also help increase the lipid profile (they increase the good cholesterol, HDL, reduce the bad cholesterol, LDL, and reduce the triglyceride level).
In addition to their antioxidant properties, strawberries have a significant amount of dietary fibers (2 g/100 g), components that help the digestive system and improve the bowel movement, offer prolonged satiety, delay sugar absorption and reduce the cholesterol level.
These fruits are also abounding in vitamins and minerals. The have high levels of vitamin C (100 g of strawberries provide 58.8 mg of vitamin C, representing 98% of the daily requirements for an adult), vitamin K, folates and manganese. All of these, for only 32 kcal/100 g!
Although strawberries are a nutritious food, they should not be eaten in excess. Consumed in large amounts, fruits can cause gastric discomfort and flatulence. They should be eaten fresh, as a snack between meals, in order to make the most of the vitamins and minerals they contain.
Author Iulia Hadarean, Nutritionist-dietician