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Goji berry, also called goji berry, is the fruit of plants native to Asia called Lycium chinense and Lycium barbarum, and is currently considered a superfood, as it has several bioactive compounds that are distinguished by their high antioxidant power, such as for example carotenoids and vitamin C.
In addition, it is an excellent source of fiber, monounsaturated fats, vitamins B1, B2 and B3, as well as minerals such as copper, magnesium, manganese and selenium and, therefore, can bring several he alth benefits, how to strengthen the immune system, prevent the emergence of chronic diseases and prevent premature aging of the skin.
This fruit can be consumed fresh, dehydrated or in capsule form, and can be purchased in supermarkets, natural food stores and online stores.
The main benefits of goji berries are:
1. Protect eyes and skin
Goji berries are rich in carotenoids, mainly zeaxanthin and beta-carotene, the latter being a precursor of vitamin A, which help maintain eye he alth and prevent the onset of retinopathies, macular degeneration and cataracts. In addition, it also contains polysaccharides and proteoglycans that exert a neuroprotective effect on the eye.
This fruit can also exert a protective effect against UV rays, helping to take care of the skin when the person is exposed to the sun for a long time.
2. Strengthen the immune system
Due to the fact that they are rich in vitamin C and selenium, consumption of goji berries can help increase the body's defenses and reduce inflammation in the body due to its antioxidant property, stimulating immune system cells and preventing the emergence of diseases such as flu and colds.
3. Lowering cholesterol
Due to their antioxidant effect and the amount of fiber and selenium, the consumption of goji berries can help reduce bad cholesterol, LDL, and increase good cholesterol, HDL, thus preventing the onset of diseases cardiovascular diseases such as atherosclerosis, heart attack and stroke.
4. Promote weight loss
Goji berry has few calories and helps improve digestion, increasing the feeling of satiety due to the fiber it contains. In addition, they also have B vitamins, which are important micronutrients for the proper functioning of metabolism and to obtain energy from food.
5. Prevent cancer
Some studies have shown that the bioactive components of goji berry inhibit tumor growth and prevent the proliferation of cancer cells. In addition, they also prevent cell damage caused by free radicals, thus preventing premature aging and the emergence of other chronic diseases.
6. Improves mood and reduces stress
By containing vitamin B6, the consumption of goji berries can help increase the production of serotonin, which is a neurotransmitter related to the feeling of stress and anxiety and improving mood, as this vitamin acts as an enzyme in the conversion of amino acid tryptophan into serotonin.
7. Prevent premature aging
Regular consumption of goji berry helps prevent premature skin aging, as it is rich in vitamin C, a micronutrient that favors collagen formation and helps to give skin firmness and elasticity, preventing the formation of wrinkles and expression lines.
In addition, it also has beta-carotenes, polyphenols and other antioxidants that produce a protective effect on the skin against the sun's ultraviolet (UV) rays, preventing the formation of blemishes.
8. Regulate blood sugar
Some studies indicate that diabetes is related to oxidative stress, a process that occurs in the body by an excess of free radicals that cause cells to oxidize and have their functions affected.
Therefore, it is believed that the antioxidant activity of goji berries could help regulate blood sugar and prevent diabetes, as it inhibits the activity of free radicals and, in turn, decreases oxidative stress.
The following table shows the nutritional composition of 100 g of dehydrated fruit:
|Components||Amount in 100 grams of goji berries|
|Proteins||14, 3 g|
|Carbohydrates||77, 1 g|
|Fat||0, 39 g|
|Vitamin A||26,800 IU|
|Vitamin B1||0, 013 mg|
|Vitamin B2||0, 028 mg|
|Vitamin B3||0, 55 mg|
|Vitamin B6||0, 04 mg|
|Vitamin C||48, 4 mg|
|Vitamin E||2, 1 mg|
|Selenium||17, 8 mcg|
|Iron||6, 8 mg|
How to consume
To obtain the benefits, you should consume 2 tablespoons of dehydrated goji berries a day, 120 ml of juice or 2 to 3 capsules daily, the amount of capsules, however, may vary depending on the concentration of the supplement, being important to read the manufacturer's label before consuming.
In addition, goji berries can be eaten as a snack or incorporated into yogurts, juices, granolas, soups and smoothies.
Are goji berries dangerous?
The recommendation is that goji berry be consumed in moderation, because it has been found that this fruit can cause allergy or anaphylactic reaction in people sensitive to its components. Therefore, if the person presents any signs or symptoms of allergy, they should stop consuming this food.In addition, goji berries may interact with some medications, such as anticoagulants and hypoglycemics.
When not to eat goji berry
Goji berry should not be consumed by people who are being treated with medication for diabetes, hypertension or who are using anticoagulants such as warfarin and aspirin.
Furthermore, it has been found that this fruit can also interact with antibiotics, antifungals, antidepressants, antivirals, anticancer drugs, osteoporosis, lipid-lowering drugs and hormone control drugs.
Therefore, if the person suffers from any of these diseases or uses some of the medicines, they should consult the doctor before consuming the fruit, either in the form of a supplement or fresh.