Spring is in the air and what that means is it is almost strawberry season! March in Ireland to many may mean St Patrick’s day but it also means the first harvest of Irish strawberries! Irish strawberries are deliciously sweet yet high in nutrients and are a great addition to our spring summer diet.
Not only are the health benefits of strawberries numerous, eating in season is good for the environment too. There are many benefits to buying a food in season. Not only is it more affordable but fruits and vegetables in season are at their most flavorsome and nutritious. Buying locally means that the food gets to your plate quicker…the longer food spends in storage or in transit the higher the chance of it spoiling and becoming waste. By looking out for locally grown seasonal produce you will help ensure freshness and reduce food waste. Fruits and vegetables picked during their season are in peak supply and in season strawberries are delicious and have many benefits when it comes to improving the health of your body!
Strawberries are a great source of vitamin C. Vitamin C is needed for the growth and repair of tissues in all parts of the body. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that blocks the damage caused by free radicals. Free radicals are made when our body breaks down food for energy and when exposed to pollutants in the environment. They build up in your system and over time play a large role in the development of disease and the general aging of your body. Having a diet rich in antioxidants can combat these effects.
Despite tasting sweet strawberries are relatively low in sugar and high in fibre. In fact, strawberries are one of the best natural fibre sources for the least number of calories you will find! Fibre not only aids digestive health and keeps your blood sugar levels stable but also keeps you fuller for longer.
Some fun strawberry facts!
- Phytochemicals a.k.a. plant nutrients, are responsible for giving fruits and vegetables their characteristic colour, texture, taste and smell. Red coloured berries, like strawberries, are full of health-promoting phytochemicals…For example; Anthocyanin with helps by preventing bacteria from attaching to cells. Ellagic acid which protects against certain cancers and Lutein which is good for your eyes.
- Strawberries are the only fruit with seeds on the outside! In fact, each strawberry can have up to 200 seeds on each berry!
- Strawberries have more vitamin c than an orange.
- Strawberries eaten at room temperature taste sweeter….so take them out of fridge about 15 minutes before eating.
- One serving of about 8 strawberries provides you with your daily vitamin C.