By John Salak-
The venerable BBC just recently pronounced gojis as: The berry that keeps Asia looking young, helping to anoint this sweet and slightly sour tasting fruit as a superfood. The report, in fact, was just one of many that now herald the potent power of this little red berry to help people live longer, happier and healthier lives. And these reports might just be right.
The healing powers of goji berries for have been prized in Asia for centuries, making it a critical component of traditional Chinese medicine’s fight against aging, chronic fatigue, liver and kidney disease, eye issues and more.
There is certainly no argument that the berry is stuffed with powerful ingredients, including vitamins A and C, iron, zinc and fiber. It also holds antioxidants and all eight essential amino acids, making it high in protein for a fruit, according to Healthline.com
With this sort of menu, there is no wonder the gojis are believed to help reduce the risk of glaucoma as they contain antioxidants such as zeaxanthin, improve immune systems, fight cancer, treat liver disease, promote healthy skin due to beta-carotene, stabilize blood sugar, and reduce depression and anxiety while helping to improve sleeping patterns.
Want another possible benefit? Wolfberries (another name for gojis) may also help enhance the protective effect of flu vaccines, according to preliminary research conducted on mice as reported in The Journal Of Nutrition.
Heck, these wonder berries may even help people lose weight, according to HealthLine.com.
“Their rich, sweet taste, along with their high-fiber content, can help you stay on track with eating healthy…Their nutrition value as a low-calorie, low-sugar option makes them a perfect substitute for other dried fruits with higher sugar content,” the site reported.
All this great press must mean gojis deserve their anointed post a superfood. Maybe, maybe not. Gojis certainly should be recognized for the potent nutritional punch they pack. But it may be too early to cite gojis as a superfood, especially if it comes at the expense of maintaining a sound balanced diet.
Dr. Jennifer Robinson, for example, supports the notion that deeper studies are needed to justify all the claims for gojis. “Many berries are good for you,” she noted in WebMD.com. “It’s not clear if goji berries are better than other types of berries, or if goji berry supplements would have the same health benefits as the actual berries.”
While the final superfood verdict is still out on gojis, it can’t hurt trying them. In fact, it’s likely to help to some degree. Thankfully, most supermarkets now sell the berries dried. It is also increasingly easy to find them fresh. Better yet, they are easy to use. Gojis can be added to breakfast cereal or yogurt, sprinkled into trail mix or used as a juice or tea. They are also great to add to pork or chicken dishes because they tend to add a savory sweetness to dishes. They are even found in wine in Asia.
So maybe don’t wait. Go red (berries) now.