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Natural Awakenings Atlanta

Strawberry Delight

Strawberries are probably the most popular of all the berries, and there are approximately 75 varieties of wild strawberries found in the United States alone, all of them edible. The strawberry itself is an unusual fruit in that its seeds are embedded in its surface, rather than protected within. The sweetest and most nutritious strawberries are those that have been sun-ripened on the plant, due to the fact that the amount of vitamin C increases the longer the berries remain unpicked in the sun.

Strawberries are highly rated as a skin-cleansing food, even though skin eruptions may increase at first, as they rid the blood of harmful toxins. Hives or other allergic reactions to the berries are most likely due to eating them in their unripe state.

Strawberries are recommended as essential for cardiac health and offer good nutritional energy that is easy to digest and process. All berries, but especially strawberries, are good sources of the anti-cancer compound ellagic acid. They are among the highest organic sodium fruits, and thus are eliminative and good for the intestinal tract; however, the seeds can be irritating where there is colitis or inflammation of the bowel.

Their considerable vitamin properties are mostly lost during cooking, so although strawberry jelly, jams and preserves may taste good, they only have a fraction of their original natural vitamins. Also, the addition of sugar makes them acidic and detrimental to the body.

Strawberry leaf tea has many of the same properties as raspberry leaf tea, and may be used to ease diarrhea, increase the flow of milk after birth and restore strength. A cut strawberry rubbed over the face after washing will whiten the skin and remove a slight sunburn.

Strawberries are a wonderful addition to smoothies. They guarantee a perfect texture, add an amazing flavor and are also tremendously nutritious. They are an excellent source of vitamin C, vitamin K, fiber and flavonoids. They are also a very good source of vitamins B1 and B5, iodine, manganese and a good source of vitamin B6, folate, and biotin.

Strawberries have been linked with numerous health benefits, such as reducing ocular pressure, promoting proper eyesight and fighting cancer, arthritis, gout and high blood pressure. Regular consumption of strawberries has also been said to promote proper brain function. For the best nutrition, always buy ripe, organic, strawberries whenever possible. For power-packed nutrition and great taste enjoy any of these smoothie recipes with greens, strawberries and other fruit.

Strawberry Banana

3 cups spinach 3 cups strawberries 1 ripe banana 2 cups alkaline water

Strawberry Orange

1 cup dandelions 3 cups strawberries 1 apple 1 ripe orange 2 cups alkaline water

Strawberry Mango

1 cup kale 2 cups mango 2 cups strawberries 2 cups alkaline water

Brenda Cobb is author of The Living Foods Lifestyle and founder of the Living Foods Institute, in Atlanta, offering Healthy Lifestyle courses on nutrition, cleansing, healing and anti-aging, including a therapy spa offering treatments to help detoxify, nourish and relax the body. For more information, call 404-524-4488 or 1-800-844-9876 and visit LivingFoodsInstitute.com. See ad, inside front cover.

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