Strawberries are the fruits of the plants of the genus Fragaria, family of the Rosceae. Actually, it is a false fruit as the real fruit is given by the seeds that can be seen on the surface of the strawberry. Fragrant and juicy, the strawberry starts appearing on the shelves of the grocery stores since March and can be found until June, for the joy of adults and children. So let's see the properties of strawberries!
Strawberries provide vitamins C, E and group B, but also fiber, calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, copper and selenium (FDA Database). Strawberries are also a rich source of antioxidant substances, such as flavonoids, anthocyanins and phenols. Precisely these substances give strawberries powerful detoxifying, anti-aging, anticancer and anti-inflammatory properties (Giampieri et al, Food Funct, 2015). Strawberries also prove to be protective for the heart since, as has been observed by scientific studies, they help to lower bad LDL cholesterol and high blood pressure, counteract obesity, improve the functionality of the endothelium, which is the tissue that covers the inside of the blood vessels, reduce the risk of thrombosis and help to keep blood sugar under control (Basu et al, J Nutr Metab, 2016 - Hannum et al, Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr, 2004). Moreover, strawberries are also protective for brain health and a diet rich in strawberries has been able to counteract brain aging processes and to improve cognitive function (Hannum et al, Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr, 2004 - Subash et al, Neural Regen Res, 2014).
Strawberries, warnings and interactions
Strawberries are generally well tolerated, however, in predisposed people, they can cause allergic reactions. Not only that, precisely for this possible allergenic effect and for the fact that strawberries stimulate the production of histamine, it is better to limit strawberry intake during treatments with antihistamine drugs. Finally, strawberries are included in the list of fruits that can most influence the action of drugs, so ask your doctor for advice if you are taking medicines (Briguglio et al, Pharmaceutics, 2018).
Strawberries, how to eat them
Strawberries are excellent to taste as a whole fruit, for breakfast or as a snack. However, remember that strawberries should be washed very well under running water and, if possible, it is better to prefer strawberries from organic cultivation. But strawberries can also be included in very tasty preparations. In the Healthy Food section you can find the recipe of vegan yogurt ice cream with berries and strawberries, or the fruit salad served in melon is a great idea for the summer and don’t forget the berry smoothie! In any case, to fully preserve the properties of the strawberries and their antioxidant action, choose to combine the strawberries with plant based milk or vegetable yoghurt as the proteins from animal milk have been shown to partially deactivate the antioxidants contained in the strawberries (Oliveira et al , Food Chem, Mar 2015).