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12 Healthiest Berries to Eat + Their Benefits

By Christine Ruggeri, CHHC

What fruits are loaded in health-promoting antioxidants; contain disease-fighting phytochemicals; provide fiber, amino acids and micronutrients; and are so versatile they can be added to almost any sweet recipe? Berries.

Berries are among the healthiest foods on the planet because of their beyond impressive nutrition profiles and antioxidant content. Adding them to your diet supports a healthy immune system, along with digestive, cardiovascular and cognitive functions, while keeping you full and boosting energy levels.

What types of berries are the healthiest? Here’s a breakdown of the best berry options and how to use them in everyday recipes.

Top 12 Healthiest Berries

1. Blueberries

Perhaps the most well-known berry out there, the blueberry is considered a top superfood because of its antioxidant content and nutritional value. The antioxidants in blueberries fight oxidative stress that can cause major health issues, including cancer, neurodegeneration and early aging.

Blueberries are also beneficial because of their fiber content, aiding digestion and supporting weight loss. They are used in a variety of ways, including as an ingredient in baked goods, yogurt parfaits, oatmeals, salads and more.

2. Blackberries

Rich in vitamin C, vitamin K and manganese, blackberries support immune system function, reduce inflammation and promote a healthy cardiovascular system. Blackberries also have a ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) score of 5,905, making them one of the highest antioxidant foods that has been shown to exhibit anticancer effects.

3. Goji Berry

Goji berry has been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine for over 2,000 years. Studies show that it increases energy levels, sleep quality, focus and mental acuity.

This is due to the berry’s phytonutrient, vitamin and mineral content, which includes over 100 percent of your daily value of vitamin A, plus 11 essential amino acids. Goji berries are consumed to support heart health, fight low mood, protect skin and eye health, and improve immunity.

4. Elderberry

Elderberry has gained attention for its ability to stimulate the immune system and fight respiratory conditions, such as the common cold and flu. Elderberry syrup or supplements are used to reduce cold and flu duration and improve symptoms.

The berry has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antiviral effects, making it a useful infection remedy. Additionally, elderberry can help lower blood sugar, promote detoxification and ease allergies.

5. Acai Berry

Acai bowls recently became all the rage, but how much do you know about this Brazilian fruit? Acai berries are very high in antioxidants (including anthocyanins that protect heart health and improve immune system function), electrolytes, dietary fiber, trace minerals, B vitamins, amino acids and plant sterols.

Like many berries, acai berry’s antioxidant count is impressive and helps the body be more resilient to the effects of free radical damage.

6. Strawberries

Eating one cup of strawberries a day provides well over your daily recommended intake of vitamin C, as well as manganese, folate, potassium and magnesium. Strawberry nutrition is also rich in antioxidants, including quercetin, tannins and polyphenols.

Strawberries have been proven to help improve immune system function, fight cancer and heart disease, improve skin health, and benefit cognitive function.

7. Raspberries

The raspberry is another antioxidant powerhouse, and it’s high in micronutrients, including vitamin C, manganese, vitamin K and magnesium. Research suggests that adding raspberries to a well-balanced diet may help with weight loss by boosting metabolism and aiding digestion.