Nutrition experts recommend berries as part of a balanced diet because these tart, juicy fruits are full of beneficial antioxidants like polyphenols.
Polyphenols offer several health benefits and one expert has a unique tip to help you get the most antioxidants when juicing berries.
What are polyphenols?
Polyphenols are a subgroup of antioxidants. These potent phytonutrients, or plant-based nutrients, are linked to many health benefits, such as supporting heart health, glowing skin and improved longevity.
Dr. Steven Gundry, a respected cardiologist, shares one hack called “reverse juicing” that will help you extract even more polyphenols from nutritious berries. (Related: Top 8 tasty and nutritious vegetables for juicing.)
Try this “reverse juicing” trick to load up on polyphenols
If you have a juicer, use it like you normally would. Slice your fruits and vegetables to the correct size, then slowly insert them one after the other into the machine.
Once activated, the juicer will press each piece into a nutrient-dense liquid. Most juicers will have an outlet that collects all the pulp so you can easily compost or save it for future recipes.
If you’re using a blender to make fruit juice, you have to strain the pulp before drinking your beverage. Gundry recommends saving the pulp instead of throwing it away because it’s actually the best part of the juicing method.
Here are the three steps to reverse juice your berries and fruits:
- Buy organic berries and process them in your juicer. If you’re using a blender, blend the berries and strain the pulp. Set the juice aside.
- The polyphenols are concentrated in plant leaves, fruits and seeds or the pulp you get after juicing. Take the fiber, get the pulp and stir it in plain goat yogurt, sheep yogurt, or coconut yogurt for a fiber-rich yogurt snack. You can also use plain yogurt.
- If you have extra pulp, add the pulp to a bit of water in an ice tray. Freeze the pulp and use the cubes to add a boost of antioxidant power to your drink or meal. This makes it easier to load up polyphenols.
Berries and polyphenols
Berries are a great source of polyphenols, and using this hack means you get more bang for your buck. Blueberries contain polyphenol pigments called anthocyanins that are needed to maintain brain health and for healthy aging.
Other fruits like pomegranates contain ellagic acid, another polyphenol and powerful antioxidant that can support healthy skin and increase skin’s resilience against UVB rays.
Instead of throwing away the pulp from your juicer, set it aside and add it to yogurt and smoothies for an antioxidant boost.
If you don’t have a juicer, you can also take a supplement that includes pomegranate extract to get similar results. Look for a high-quality 100 percent pomegranate whole fruit extract with a concentrated dose (at least 60 percent) of total polyphenols.
These supplements can help enhance photoprotection and promote healthy skin aging. Try beauty supplements with pomegranate extract to boost your skin health.
When buying supplements, choose a product that contains only 100 percent pomegranate whole fruit extract (Punica granatum L.) that includes a relevant dose of at least 100 milligrams. Lastly, the supplement should include a verifiable botanical concentration of polyphenols. Brands will usually quantify the polyphenol amount.
An antioxidant-rich snack to pair with your juice
Strawberries contain high amounts of antioxidant polyphenols. This delicious snack made with fresh strawberries can help protect healthy cells from free radical damage.
Homemade strawberry oatmeal bars
These strawberry oatmeal bars are also great if you need a quick breakfast or snack.
Ingredients for 16 servings of the crust and crumble:
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 1 1/2 cups regular oats (Don’t use the instant kind)
- 1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- A pinch of salt
Ingredients for the strawberry filling:
- 3 cups of sliced fresh strawberries
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon white whole-wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 350 F.
- Line the bottom of an 8×8 pan with parchment paper. Spray the parchment paper with cooking spray for easy removal.
- Get a large bow and add the melted butter, white whole wheat flour, regular oats, brown sugar, honey, ground cinnamon and salt. Mix until just combined, and the mixture is a little crumbly. Scoop out one cup of the mixture and set aside. You will use this as the crumble.
- Add the remaining mixture to the prepared pan. Spread the mixture out and use your fingers to press into the bottom of the pan so the crust is in an even layer.
- Get a small bowl and add the strawberries, lemon juice, vanilla extract and white whole wheat flour. Toss to combine.
- Add the strawberry mixture on top of the oatmeal crust and spread it out evenly.
- Evenly sprinkle the crumble mixture over the top of the oatmeal bars.
- Bake the bars for 50 minutes.
- Once done, remove the bars from the pan and let it sit for 10 minutes.
- When the oatmeal bars are cool, cut them before serving.
- Store the leftover bars in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to four days.
- To freeze, transfer the cooled bars to a freezer-safe container and freeze for up to three months. If you want to stack the bars in the container, add a piece of parchment paper between the layers to prevent sticking. Thaw out frozen bars in the fridge before serving.
If you love fruit juice, use your juicer and save the nutrient-rich pulp from berries. Add the fruit pulp to sweet desserts and breakfasts for a quick antioxidant boost.
Watch the video below to learn more about cacao nibs, another superfood full of antioxidants.
This video is from the Health Ranger Store channel on Brighteon.com.