Week 29: Raspberries
Raspberries belong to the rose (Rosaceae) family of plants, which also includes apples, apricots, blackberries, cherries, loquats, peaches, pears, plums, strawberries and almonds. There are over 200 species of raspberries. They are an aggregate fruit, meaning that smaller sections with seeds and fruit create a larger whole.
Raspberries have considerable antioxidant activity, 50% more than strawberries. You will get significantly more antioxidant support by purchasing raspberries that are fully ripe.
Scientists aren't entirely sure about the origins of raspberries. Today, raspberries rank high on the list of the world's most popular berries. In the United States, the West Coast is most active in raspberry production.
Nutrient Profile: Raspberries are an outstanding source of phytonutrients. They are an excellent source of vitamin C, manganese and dietary fiber. They are a very good source of copper and a good source of vitamin K, pantothenic acid, biotin, vitamin E, magnesium, folate, omega-3 fatty acids and potassium.
Antioxidant and Anti-inflammatory Benefits: The diversity of antioxidant and anti-inflammatory phytonutrients in raspberries is truly remarkable. These nutrients help protect against the dangers of oxidative stress and excessive inflammation. These phytonutrients may help lower our risk of chronic diseases such as obesity, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and atherosclerosis.
Obesity and Blood Sugar Benefits: In the case of obesity, two compounds in raspberries have received special focus: raspberry ketone (also called rheosmin) and a type of flavonoid calledtiliroside. Rheosmin can increase metabolism in our fat cells and therefore fat is less likely to deposit in our fat cells. Tiliroside (a type of flavonoid) activates the hormone adiponectin which can help improve insulin balance, blood sugar balance, and blood fat balance in obese persons with type 2 diabetes.
Anti-Cancer Benefits: Due to the rich supply of antioxidants, raspberries are able to reduce chronic excessive oxidative stress and chronic excessive inflammation which can combine to trigger the development of cancer cells in a variety of human tissue.
Selection and Storage: As raspberries are highly perishable, they should only be purchased one or two days prior to use. The goal when purchasing this fruit is to choose berries that are fully ripe without being overly so. Choose berries that are firm, plump, and deep in color, while avoiding those that are soft, mushy, or moldy.
Raspberries will keep fresh in the refrigerator for one or two days. To help prevent spoilage, when taking your raspberries out of the refrigerator for consumption, try not to leave them at room temperature any longer than two hours and also try to avoid placing them directly in strong sunlight.
Recipe Suggestion: What a wonderful and delicious sparkling raspberry lemonade from Cooking Classy. I modified this recipe by deleting the sugar and using only honey as the sweetener (to taste). So refreshing.