Strawberries: properties, benefits and side effects

Lots of water, lots of fiber, a treasure trove of antioxidants and a wealth of vitamin C that rivals citrus fruits: small and tasty, strawberries ensure great health benefits. Find out what they are nutritional properties of these fruits, how to taste them and use them in cooking and such precautions take when you eat it, because they can cause allergies.

The nutritional properties of strawberries

What do strawberries contain? They are made up of 90% of waterto which simple carbohydrates are added, responsible for their caloric intake which is, however, very limited: approx 30 calories per 100 g of fresh strawberries. These fruits are a good source of fiber and they bring mineral salts, in particular magnesium, potassium and phosphorusand vitamins such as B9 (folic acid). But it is above all theexcellent vitamin C content to make them stand out: a good 54 mg per 100, practically like oranges. It is enough to eat a dozen fresh strawberries to completely satisfy the daily requirement of this vitamin in women and to cover 80% of that of men. Finally, there are many substances in strawberries antioxidants: in addition to vitamin C, also flavonoids and polyphenols, very precious for our health.

The benefits of strawberries

So let’s find out, in more detail, why strawberries are so good for you.

Antioxidants, antiaging and allies of longevity

Between flavonoids with an antioxidant action, strawberries contain above all two molecules, le anthocyanins and fisetin, which as underlined by the IEO (European Institute of Oncology) make them longevity allies. Anthocyanins are plant pigments present in red and purple fruits and vegetables, for example in blueberries and aubergines: these compounds promote circulation of the blood, especially that of capillaries and small vessels, e help reduce cholesterol levelsthus helping us to protect the heart from the risks of atherosclerosis, a condition that occurs when the arteries lose their elasticity due to the presence of cholesterol plaques and which increases the risk of heart attacks and other cardiovascular diseases.

The fisetinahowever, seems to be able to protect cells from degeneration e you prevent brain aging. Some laboratory studies, to be investigated, also suggest that it can play aanticancer action: that is, it would be capable of blocking or delaying the growth of tumor cells in various oncological pathologies.

Among the antioxidants, in strawberries there are also i polyphenolsespecially theellagic acidwhich are attributed the ability to reduce oxidative stress caused by free radicals and to play aneuroprotective action.

Strawberries also contain some anti-inflammatory moleculesi salicylateswhich make them beneficial in the presence of diseases that have an inflammatory origin, such asarthritis.

Beneficial for the immune system and skin health

Strawberries are also very rich in vitamin C, which strengthens the immune defences, improves iron absorptionin particular of the non-heme present in foods of plant origin, and contributes to the synthesis of collagen, very important for maintaining theskin elasticitybut also for the health of all tissuesdai blood vessels at gums. To the correct structure of teeth and bones potassium and phosphorus also contribute.

Precious in pregnancy

Furthermore, the abundance of folic acid makes the strawberry a precious fruit pregnancybecause this vitamin is essential to promote the development of the fetus and keep away the risk of malformations.

Satiating and purifying thanks to fibers and water

Due to their great wealth of water, strawberries are very moisturizing, purifying and diureticuseful for the well-being of the liver and kidneys.

Finally, the high fiber content helps stimulate the intestinal regularity and to combat constipation, as well as being useful to promote satiety and control your appetite.

Strawberries: side effects and contraindications

Strawberries might interfere with anticoagulant and antiplatelet drugsreducing their effectiveness, therefore those who take these medicines should not eat them, or should as a precaution seek medical advice before consuming them.

Likewise, allergy sufferers should avoid strawberries. In reality, strawberry allergy is not a real allergy but one pseudoallergic reaction. In fact, these fruits, like tomatoes, chocolate, eggs and fish, are histamine-releasing foodsthat is, they stimulate in the body the histamine release, a substance that in some people can cause responses similar to those of an allergy. Since the immune system is not involved, generally the reactions are less severe than those typical of a real food allergy, even if the intensity depends on individual sensitivity: i symptoms may be of interest to respiratory tractthe cute and thegastro-intestinal system and include nasal congestioncough, shortness of breath, hives with red dots on the skin e itching, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. People suffering from asthma, pollen allergy, eczema may be more predisposed to developing this type of intolerance. Due to the allergic-like reaction strawberries can trigger, it is recommended administer them for the first time to children with cautionasking the pediatrician for advice on the precautions to be taken.

Strawberries in the kitchen: consumption tips and recipes

Strawberries are ideal to be enjoyed naturallya mode that also helps best preserve their nutrients. Some of them, in fact, like the vitamin Care thermolabile, i.e. sensitive to heat, therefore cooking damages them. Another important tip is to quickly wash the strawberries under water, avoiding soaking them for too long: vitamin C, in fact, is also water-soluble, therefore in water it tends to disperse.

And if you want to add strawberries to your dishes? The possibilities are endless! Again, recipes that don’t involve cooking allow you to make the most of their nutritional properties. From this point of view, salads are a perfect and very tasty idea, which allows you to range between many ingredients: how about our caprese with avocado and strawberries? Or, if you want a fresh and nutritious single dish, try l‘barley salad, strawberries and warm bacon.

There are many ingredients with which these fruits give their best and that you can use to experiment both sweet and savory recipes: dal pesce al chocolate until vegetables such as spinach and arugulawhich you can pair with strawberries in a salad to create a nice contrast between sweet and sour.

Discover the strawberry recipes in the “Ingredients” section of Buonissimo.

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