Okay, so I stole most of this from my favorite website, Hungrygirl, but when I read it the other day I just knew I had to share it with all my wonderful readers (all 5 of you). Plus it was easier than coming up with my own post today (things have been kinda crazy around here for me lately, I'm truly sorry for the lack of posting, but I'm trying really). With summer around the corner I thought this would be a great post so you could get some info on great fruit and some great ideas on how to enjoy them. So, lets dig in...
Why we love 'em: Blueberries are jam-packed with nutrients and great taste, yet are very low in calories. These tart 'n tangy colorful circles of flavor are delicious in everything from pancakes to muffins to oatmeal and yogurt.
The Magic ingredient: Antioxidants. All fruits contain antioxidants, but studies show that blueberries contain the highest antioxidant content of all. This makes them great at destroying free radicals that cause disease and signs of aging.
How to enjoy 'em: In cold cereal, warmed up in a bowl of oatmeal, or as part of a BlueBran Vitalicious VitaTop (check this site out, these are awesome...the chocolate ones are the best!!!). Since we are so lucky to have a ton of blueberry farms and fields around the area I love to go out and pick a ton of them so I can enjoy them fresh and then freeze them and eat them like candy (yum) or blended in a smoothie (YUM!!). They are also delicious over waffles and yogurt!
Why we love 'em: These beauteous red friends are little bits of berry bliss. Sweet and refreshing, they're one of the most delicious fruits ever. And lucky for us, they're also super-low in calories.
The Magic ingredients: Vitamin C. Strawberries actually have more of the stuff than oranges. Strawberries also contain ellagic acid, a natural cancer-fighting chemical. Researchers have found that this compound is a potent inhibitor of such carcinogens as tobacco smoke and nitrosamines.
How to enjoy 'em: Dipped in Hershey's Lite Chocolate Syrup, sliced in oatmeal, or on top of Dreyer's Slowed Churned Ice Cream in Vanilla or Strawberry. We can also get these fresh at little stands all over the area so don't miss out on eating these fresh as well. They are also good in smoothies and over waffles and yogurt! One of my friends LOVES these yummy red berries and has eaten half a flat all by herself (I won't name names but you know who you are).
Why we love 'em: There's a reason bananas are the most popular fruit in the United States -- they're delicious! They're sweet, but not too sweet, and they're soft, but not too soft. And bananas are fun to eat. Weeee!
The Magic ingredient: Potassium. Bananas are one of the best sources of this essential mineral. Potassium helps us to maintain normal blood pressure and heart function and helps prevent cardiovascular disease and stroke.
How to enjoy them: With a drizzle of honey, chopped up and mixed into a Jell-O SF pudding cup, or frozen with a touch of Hershey's Lite Chocolate Syrup. You can also make a fabulous peanut butter and banana sandwich (add a little honey and it gets even better!!).
Why we love 'em: These hairy, brown babies may not be much to look at, but cut one open and you'll find that the outside is much different from its gorgeous inside, which is a lovely, brilliant, bright green. And they taste great, too.
Magical Properties: Studies show that kiwi may protect against respiratory symptoms associated with asthma, such as wheezing and shortness of breath. Kiwi has long fascinated researchers because of its amazing ability to protect DNA in the nucleus of human cells. It's also loaded with vitamin C, and a good source of vitamin E, vitamin A and fiber.
How to enjoy 'em: Top sliced kiwi and strawberries with nonfat plain yogurt, make a tropical fruit salad or salsa, or simply peel, slice and eat plain.
Why we love 'em: Apples are sweet, crunchy and refreshing. And, because apples are a good source of fiber, they not only keep the doctor away, but they keep hunger at bay as well.
The Magic ingredient: Many of the phytochemicals found in apples, including quercetin, catechin, phloridzin and chlorogenic acid, are strong antioxidants. These antioxidants serve to help prevent cancer, heart disease, asthma, and type 2 diabetes.
How to enjoy 'em: Sliced w/a Tbsp. of all natural peanut butter, baked using diet black cherry soda, or chopped up into a carton of Yoplait Light Apple Turnover Yogurt. I love to chop an apple up into tiny bits and heat them up until they are really soft in the microwave, toss them in a little cinnamin and sugar and then add to oatmeal or the whole waffle/yogurt concoction that I seem to love so much (yeah, I know, you probably think I'm weird).
I should add that the waffles that I keep referring to are the whole grain Go Lean frozen waffles...very delish!
Hope this has been helpful to you. All these fruits make tasty (and healthy) desserts for picnics and b-b-q's so get out there and enjoy a fun and healthy summer! If you have any other ideas for these fruits let me know. I know I left out a lot of wonderful fruit but maybe when I get some time to myself I'll write about those. One thing I will add is that you should by some grapes (when they are a good price) and put them in the freezer, they make a great snack during the warm weather!
Love you all!
ps. I tried to put pictures on this post but two different computers wouldn't let me....so weird!