Blueberries for Good Bone Health


In a recent study blueberries were found to be great for our bones due to the polyphenols in the berry, the pigment that gives the berries their blue color.   We have known about the positive health benefits of blueberries for a long time but this study will show how it affects our bones.

But now new research by the Arkansas Children's Nutrition Centre has revealed that blueberries are even better for you than we already knew! In addition to being a powerful antioxidant, it is now believed that the berries also contain compounds that help with building strong, healthy bones [1].

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Since the study was only carried out on rats, it contained 10% freeze dried blueberries put into a ration for the rats' food.   At the end of the study the rats that received the blueberry powder had significant increases in bone mineral density and those who received a placebo didn't have any bone benefits.   The researchers also found that the osteoblast's exposed to blueberries, polyphenols, developed into mature bone cells faster than they did in the group given the placebo.

Due to the success in this study, done on rats, the same team is beginning testing on humans to see if the results are the same for us.   If this proves to be effective in humans, at the Arkansas Children's Nutrition Centre, we'll have yet another good dietary choice to add that will help improve our bone mineral density, along with the other nutritional items we are already using for bone loss.

Since this sounds promising and has several other health benefits, below are 3 recipes from our sister site for you to try and add to your bone regimen.

**Blueberry Smoothie **

This recipe serves:   1

1/4 cup orange juice
1/2 cup plain, low-fat yogurt
1/2 cup washed, stemmed blueberries
honey to taste

1. Place all the ingredients in a blender. Blend on high speed until smooth.

Serving Size: about 1 cup

For more information see Smoothie recipe.

Muesli with Dried Cherries and Fresh Blueberries

This recipe serves:   4

1 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup skim milk
1/3 cup dried cherries
1/3 cup fresh blueberries

1. Place the oats in a bowl. Add the milk. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

2. Stir in the dried cherries and top with the blueberries when ready to serve.

Serving Size: 2 ounces

For more information see with Dried Cherries and Fresh Blueberries

Rustic Fresh Blueberry Peach Tart

This recipe serves:   8

1 cup flour
6 tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons very cold butter
3 tablespoons ice cold water
1 cup blueberries
1 cup peeled, sliced peaches

1. Preheat the oven to 400 °F.

2. Place the flour, 2 tablespoons of the sugar, salt and butter in a food processor fitted with blade attachment.

3. Process the mixture until the butter is the size of small peas.

4. With the motor running, add the water and process for 15 seconds.

5. Turn the crumbly dough onto a work surface and form it into a disc. Chill for several hours.

6. Roll the dough out to a 9" or 10" shell.

7. Put the dough on a baking sheet and pile the blueberries and peaches toward the center. Sprinkle the fruit with the remaining sugar.

8. Gently fold the edges of the dough to contain the fruit.

9. Bake until the crust is lightly golden, about 20 to 30 minutes.

Serving Size: 1/8 of the tart

For more information see Fresh Blueberry Peach Tart

Most of us are looking for natural ways to treat bone loss and the studies recently completed on the polyphenols in blueberries shows great promise.   We've known about the bone health benefits of polyphenols in green tea, and now we can add blueberries to our diets to help promote bone growth.

All of these recipes are great for the hot summer months and you can find many more excellent recipes high in calcium and vitamin D at our site.


Eating blueberries helps build strong bones, suggests study; Jonathan Benson June 30, 2011 Natural

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