Goji berries are the small, red berries that come from the Lycium barbarum plant, an evergreen shrub that grows in China, Mongolia and in the Himalayan Mountains of Tibet. Commonly known as “red diamonds” or “wolfberries,” these amazing berries are among the most nutritious and delicious superfoods on the planet. Their signature bright red hue is an indicator of the wealth of antioxidants they contain. Besides antioxidants, goji berries also contain plenty of fiber, protein, calcium, phosphorus and many other vitamins and minerals.
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Health benefits of goji berries**
They support healthy eye function – Organic goji berries are an excellent source of zeaxanthin and carotenoids, both of which are known to support healthy vision. Goji berries also contain more beta-carotene – a dietary carotenoid – than carrots. In fact, they contain one of the highest concentrations of beta-carotene in any edible plant.
They promote a healthy cardiovascular system – The high concentration of antioxidants in goji berries may help protect your heart from the harmful effects of oxidative stress and promote optimal cardiovascular health. Goji berries are also known to support healthy blood pressure and cholesterol levels that are already within the normal range.
They support healthy immune function – Since they are naturally high in antioxidants, goji berries provide excellent immune support and they can help your body fend off external threats. They are also rich in polysaccharides and vitamins A and C, all of which further help maintain a healthy immune system.
They promote healthy cognitive function – According to research, goji berries can provide excellent nutritional support to help maintain healthy brain function already within the normal range. The antioxidants in goji berries can also help protect your brain from damage caused by free radicals.
They support healthy kidney and liver functions – In TCM, goji berries are used alongside other herbs like licorice, ganoderma, gynostemna and pentaphylla to support healthy liver and kidney functions. These berries are believed to restore strength and vitality throughout the body. This is also why many Asian cultures often add goji berries to medicinal soups and porridge dishes.
They support your body’s natural ability to eliminate toxic elements – Goji berries contain at least four beneficial polysaccharides that help support your body’s natural ability to flush out toxic elements. The regular consumption of goji berries can also help keep your body nourished and refreshed.
They help maintain healthy, radiant skin – Goji berries are loaded with vitamin C, beta-carotene and other antioxidants that support healthy, glowing skin and help reduce the appearance of skin aging. Goji berries also provide an abundance of nutrients that can help nourish your skin.
They can support sensible weight management plans – Highly nutritious and low in fat and calories, goji berries are an excellent addition to a reasonable weight management plan, especially when accompanied by a healthy diet and proper exercise. They also have a low glycemic index. Additionally, goji berries are naturally rich in fiber, which can further support your sensible weight management goals.
They help uplift and elevate your mood – Goji berries are also called “happy berries” because they help uplift and elevate your mood. According to a study that appeared in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, the regular consumption of concentrated goji berry extract is linked to improved feelings and overall well-being.
Goji berries boast an impressive nutritional profile**
Low in fat and calories and high in nutrients, goji berries are more than just a delicious snack. This superfruit is loaded with essential vitamins and minerals that your body needs.
- Goji berries contain 18 amino acids, including the 9 essential ones.
- Goji berries contain 21 trace minerals, including iron, copper, selenium, zinc, germanium and many more.
- Goji berries have more protein than whole wheat.
- Goji berries have nearly 10x more protein than blueberries or raspberries.
- Goji berries contain up to 500x more vitamin C than oranges.
- Goji berries are packed with vitamins A, B1, B2, B6, C and E, a combination which is extremely rare in fruit.
- Goji berries deliver at least five different carotenoids, including beta-carotene, zeaxanthin, lutein, lycopene and cryptoxanthin.
- Goji berries contain more beta-carotene than carrots.
- Goji berries offer more iron than soybeans and spinach.
- Goji berries provide six essential fatty acids (EFAs).
- Goji berries contain numerous plant-based nutrients with many health benefits, such as beta-sitosterol, betaine, polysaccharides and polyphenolic antioxidants. They also contain L-arginine and L-glutamine, which supports healthy growth and development.
Goji berries are incredibly rich in antioxidants**
Like many other brightly colored berries, goji berries are packed with antioxidant polyphenols like caffeic acid, coumaric acid, rutin, scopoletin and feruloyl tyramine. Goji berries can also support your body's natural production of antioxidants, such as glutathione and the antioxidant enzyme superoxide dismutase (SOD). Some other powerful antioxidants present in goji berries include zeaxanthin, beta-carotene, quercetin, kaempferol and the unique Lycium barbarum polysaccharide (LBP). LBP has a similar chemical structure to certain immune-supporting compounds in maitake mushrooms and echinacea. Together, all these potent antioxidants can protect your body from harmful free radicals, as well as promote healthy immune function.
Furthermore, when it comes to scavenging harmful free radicals, few fruits can rival the efficacy of goji berries. This superfruit is especially renowned for its oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC), which is among the highest of all foods. The abundance of antioxidants in goji berries is the main reason why they're often used in superfood blends, antioxidant boosting supplements, and even beauty products. As a potent source of antioxidants, goji berries can help protect your body from oxidative stress and support your overall health. Plus, they are super delicious!