With a sweet taste and, at the same time, sour, the blackberry is one of the most appreciated fruits in the world. Its shape resembles a miniature bunch of grapes and its red or purple color is quite characteristic. In addition to being delicious, it is versatile, rich in nutrients and provides health benefits, being well known for its medicinal properties.
It is the fruit of the mulberry, a tree of the rosaceae family, and has several varieties, such as black, white and red. However, the most commonly found species in Brazil is the blackberry. “It is rounded and initially appears red, but when it is very mature it turns black”, says Edson creditnutritionist doctor.
The black variety is highly nutritious, as it contains a large amount of vitamins C (15.8 mg), A (11 mcg), E (1.17 mg), and minerals magnesium (15 mg), phosphorus ( 16.5 mg), potassium (121 mg) and calcium (21.8 mg), in addition to containing few calories: in 100 g of the fruit, for example, there are 35 kcal.
See the health benefits of blackberry:
1. Prevents premature aging
The fruit helps to prevent the formation of free radicals and to prevent cellular aging, as it is rich in antioxidants, substances whose function is to protect cells.
In addition, the anthocyanins present in the fruit are related to an anticancer effect, glycemic control and the prevention of cardiovascular diseases.
2. Improves bowel function
The consumption of blackberry helps to regulate intestinal transit and prevent constipation, as it is an excellent source of fiber and water. A cup (tea) of blackberries, for example, provides approximately 8 grams of fiber.
3. Helps with satiety
Because it contains fiber and few calories, blackberry produces a feeling of satiety, ensuring a slower absorption of nutrients and, thus, helping to control weight.
4. Good for the bones
Blackberry contributes to the strengthening of bones, as it is rich in calcium, a mineral that helps bone health. Consumed pure or in the form of tea made from the leaves, the fruit helps to ensure bone strength and prevent osteoporosis.
5. It is beneficial for heart health
In blackberry, the presence of phytochemicals, such as anthocyanins and carotenoids, act in the prevention and combat of chronic diseases such as cardiovascular diseases. In addition, the vitamin C present in the fruit helps in the control of cholesterol and acts against clogging of arteries.
6. Regulates blood pressure
Blackberries contain polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fatty acids, also known as “good” fats. A review of studies found that diets high in monounsaturated fat lower blood sugar, triglycerides, weight and blood pressure compared to a carbohydrate-based diet.
7. Strengthens the immune system and improves mood
The vitamin C present in the fruit strengthens the immune system by stimulating the production of lymphocytes and white blood cells, and helps the body deal with inflammatory processes caused by diseases and infections.
In addition, this vitamin helps with reasoning and well-being by contributing to the synthesis of neurotransmitters such as serotonin, adrenaline, noradrenaline and dopamine.
Benefit under study
There is still no proof that blackberry tea can alleviate some menopausal symptoms, but some studies in rats have shown that extract of the fruit can mimic or modulate estrogenic action.
how to consume
Blackberry can be consumed in different ways, from fruit to juices, teas, cakes and other desserts that use it in its composition. The fruit can even, after being washed and drained of excess water, be frozen, which helps to increase its shelf life.
Risks and Contraindications
Blackberry is rich in phenolic compounds, which have usually been associated with several benefits for human health, as already mentioned. However, consumption should be reduced in the third trimester of pregnancy, as it can harm the formation of blood vessels in the baby’s heart. “Thus, during this period, the pregnant woman should reduce the consumption of red fruits, chocolate, teas, coffee, mate and other foods rich in phenolic compounds”, recommends Tatiana EmanuelliPhD in biological sciences, biochemistry, professor at UFSM (Federal University of Santa Maria).
Consumption of the fruit can also cause allergic reactions such as rashes, itching and swelling in some people. In addition, because they are rich in carbohydrates, the amount ingested must be controlled by diabetics.
Sources: Edson Credidionutrologist, general practitioner, angiologist and vascular surgeon and homeopath, doctor in food science and post-doctoral in food bioactives from Unicamp (State University of Campinas); Milene Teixeira BarciaPhD in food science, professor at UFSM (Federal University of Santa Maria); Natalia Magalhãesnutritionist and postgraduate student in sports nutrition and aesthetics, professor of the technical course in nutrition in Recife (PE); Tatiana EmanuelliPhD in biological sciences, biochemistry, professor at UFSM.