Go-Go Goji Berries

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Dear Diary,

I’m still having a hard time fitting in. The blueberries are intimidated by my lavish antioxidant count and kicked me out of their study group. Raisins are starting to take their side. The word has started to get out -  all this talk about how I naturally protect the liver, help improve eyesight and control appetite. Last week, the watermelon found out how low my glycemic index is and stole my Lisa Frank backpack while I was walking home. I’m just dreading the day the carrots figure out that its actually my beta-carotene that brings all the boys to the yard? <Sigh>

Always + 4-Ever,
Goji Berry

Enough with the pity party, dear Goji. Kids can be cruel, but the big girls are on to you.

Rich in antioxidants, beta-carotene, polysaccharides, amino acids and potassium, the “longevity” fruit has been thought to harmonize functions of the entire body, according to traditional Chinese folklore. The recommended daily serving of only 10 to 30 grams gives you more vitamin C than oranges, more beta-carotene than carrots and more potassium than bananas.

What’s a Goji?

A shriveled, red berry, the goji is chewy in texture with a mild, tangy taste. Traditionally used in Asian dishes, the miracle superfood has been Westernized as a garnish, a key ingredient in smoothies, teas, juices, crunch bars, granola cereals and in pure capsule form.

The Power of Goji

While marketers have been criticized for unproven claims and building “false hype,” researchers have found a variety of nutrients in the goji berry that encourage a long and healthy lifespan.

Goji Berries Keep Us Lookin’ Younger

  • Protects our DNA to help decelerate the aging process
  • Decreases stress
  • Improves vision
  • Protects the skin from sun damage
  • Increases testosterone for enhanced libido and sexual function
  • Stimulates collagen production and retains moisture for younger looking skin

Goji Berries Keep The Pounds Off

  • Helps to convert food in to energy rather than store it as fat
  • Assists in appetite control with a lower glycemic index
  • Promotes lean muscle
  • Improves physical performance, mood and well-being
  • Aids in recovery to stimulate muscle regeneration

Goji Berries Keep Us Healthy

  • Regulates blood sugar, detoxifies the liver and aids in digestion to keep vital organs healthy
  • Enhances the body’s ability to resist disease with polysaccharides
  • Reduces the risk of allergies, including respiratory symptoms and skin reactions
  • Reduces inflammation and guards against immune disorders
  • Controls cholesterol and blood pressure

How to Buy

Take some tips from the experts, and consider the following when buying goji berries:

  • Buy dried goji berries rather than juice. Save money and better regulate nutrition with solid goji berries. If you do buy goji juice, look for the product sold in glass bottles as it helps prevent degradation and oxidation.
  • Shop organic. Avoid the “Green Seal” certified in China, as this does not equate with USDA standards and may allow for unknown pesticides.
  • Avoid bright red or bright orange goji berries. The “bright” ones may indicate higher levels of sulfites.
  • Evaluate the Oxygen Radical Absorbency Capacity (ORAC) to verify that Lycium barbarum is being measured. The ORAC scale is used by the USDA to measure antioxidant potency. For antioxidants to be most effective, proper levels need to be maintained in the body. Goji berries are said to have approximately 250 per gram.

Goji berries can be purchased at health or specialty food stores nationwide, and in some specialty food sections at major supermarket retailers. Eat up!

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5 Responses to “Go-Go Goji Berries”

  1. July 31, 2013 at 8:34 am #

    I’ve been reading a lot about these lately, is there a particular brand you may recommend? I recently moved to a fairly remote area in Michigan, from a vegan friendly city in California, and am having a hard time finding any of the goodies I used to purchase. I’ve found myself ordering a lot of stuff from the internet. If there’s any particular brand or site you would recommend it would be greatly appreciated! :) Thank you!

  2. July 31, 2013 at 9:32 am #

    Try Nativas Naturals brand! You can order them on Amazon too! The same brand also makes chia seeds and an excellent cocoa powder!

  3. July 31, 2013 at 10:11 am #

    how do you eat them? I have them dried but i’m not sure if I have to soak them before I eat them or put them in smoothies?

  4. August 1, 2013 at 8:00 am #

    You can just eat them plain. No need for soaking. As long as you blend them long enough in smoothies, you’re good. :)

  5. August 14, 2013 at 8:35 am #

    They are great in smoothies or even just mixed with some granola and nuts. Thanks for all the info!

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