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Health Smart Seniors - Secrets of Keeping Your Mind Sharp
If something is on the Internet it must be true, right? Of course not! The Internet is packed full of information. While most of the information on the Internet is reliable, there is also a number of questionable sources. So when I read about the brain sharpening abilities of the wild blueberry at first I was skeptical. However, when I began conducting research I was impressed with all of the reliable information.
The first story I learned about how blueberries played an important role on World War II. According to the research information, British Air force pilots actually improved their bombing accuracy by eating blueberry jam on their bread. The pilots that ate the blueberries were far more accurate in their bombing missions than other pilots.
In addition to offering brain benefits this little blue fruit also has a well documented history of helping to reduce eye fatigue and irritation, night blindness and helped to improve vision and memory. For example, several European studies offer documented benefits of bilberries, which is the European cousin of the blueberry and improved eyesight. Also, research from Japan has shown blueberries can help ease eye fatigue which is great news for those suffering from eye fatigue due to driving, reading or spending time on the computer.
What Makes the Blueberry and Brain Food and Eye Soother?
Blueberries contain high amounts of a natural compound called Anthocyanins. This flavonoid is what is responsible for giving the blueberry its blue hue. Accord to research, anthocyanins have an amazing effect on the brain and eyes including strengthening capillaries and peripheral circulation. This means blueberries may help to increase the blood in and around the eyes. Thus increased blood flow around eyes may be the reason for the countless claims of reduction of eye related irritations and improved vision.
However, the good news doesn''t stop with the eyes. The blueberry also helps the brain function better too. According to an article published in the September 15, 1999 Journal of Neuroscience, a USDA study showed that a diet rich in blueberry extract improved short term memory in aged rats and reversed some loss of balance and coordination. In fact, this study was the first that linked high-antioxidant fruits and vegetables to prevention of function loss and demonstrate a reversal in dysfunctions of behavior.
A 2003 Tufts study showed blueberries enhanced memory-associated neuronal signaling. The study also showed the alterations involved in certain neuronal activities and concluded it may be possible to overcome genetic predisposition to Alzheimer''s Disease through diet and supplementation of blueberries.
In the Neurobiology of Aging April 2005 demonstrated results that age-related changes in temporal processing speed may be reversed by dietary supplementation of blueberry phyto-chemicals.In an additional 2005 study, the results demonstrated blueberry''s ability to ameliorate age-related deficits in neuronal and behavioral functions.
Blueberry supplementation might enhance the brain''s ability to generate a heat shock protein 70 (HSP70) mediated neuroprotective response to stress. This suggests short-term blueberry intervention may result in improved HSP70-mediated protection against a number of neurodegenerative processes in the brain in including Alzheimer''s disease.
Here are some reliable sources to incorporate blueberries into your diet. " Fresh Blueberry: When in season, you can get fresh blueberries straight from the farm market or the produce section of your local store.
" Dried Blueberry: A handful of dried blueberries make a great healthy snack or an addition to your morning cereal. Dried blueberries make a great choice since they are available year round. One source for dried blueberries is Traverse Bay Farms www.traversebayfarms.com The company will ship dried blueberry directly to your home or office.
" Blueberry Extract (Super Fruit Supplements): Blueberry supplements are the most convenient and easiest way to get the natural health benefits of the blueberry. These super fruit dietary supplements start with the whole blueberry. The entire blueberry is used to produce the blueberry capsules, including the skin and the flesh of the fruit. A good source for blueberry capsules is from Fruit Advantage www.fruitadvantage.com
Ms. Jackson is a natural health writer. She specializes in natural remedies. Make sure to download a free copy of the Super Fruit Handbook at http://www.superfruithandbook.com To learn more about blueberries visit http://www.traversebayfarms.com
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