Blueberries, a staple of summer in many farmers markets, have the two-fold benefit of being nutritious and relatively low in calories. One cup has about 80 calories -- just 4 percent of your daily intake, if you follow a 2,000-calorie diet. As the many health benefits of blueberries become well-established through large, more companies are looking to bottle blueberry juice, so you can enjoy the flavor and nutrients all year round.
Antioxidants include certain vitamins and nutrients that help fight the effects of free radicals, unstable atoms that damage cells. Little blueberries are packed with antioxidants, such as anthocyanins. Consuming anthocyanins helps your risk of chronic diseases, including heart disease, cancer and neurodegenerative diseases. They also play a role in healthy vision, and protect you from visual disorders.
Adding blueberry juice to your diet also provides you with vitamin C. This nutrient proves vital to a healthy immune system, as well as healthy gums and capillaries, especially important if you're at risk for microvascular disease. Vitamin C also helps the body absorb iron and allows you make neurotransmitters essential for brain function. Each cup of blueberry juice contains 17 milligrams of vitamin C, or 36 percent of the recommended daily intake for women.
You'll also reap health benefits from drinking blueberry juice because of its vitamin K content. Getting enough vitamin K allows your body to form blood clots -- aggregations of blood cells that cut off bleeding after an injury. The vitamin K in blueberry juice also contributes to bone health, activating proteins essential for bone tissue growth. Each serving of blueberry juice contains 54 micrograms of vitamin K, or 60 percent of your recommended daily intake.
- TrueBlue: Health Benefits of Blueberriesrel="nofollow"
- U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council: Nutritionrel="nofollow"
- Pennington Nutrition Series: Anthocyaninsrel="nofollow"
- NutritionalValue.org: Blueberries, Rawrel="nofollow"
- Linus Pauling Institute: Vitamin Crel="nofollow"
- Linus Pauling Institute: Vitamin Krel="nofollow"
- group ob blueberries image by Tomo Jesenicnik from Fotolia.com
This article reflects the views of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of Jillian Michaels or JillianMichaels.com.