I am happy to announce that in the next couple of weeks I will be doing a weekly post on superfoods. I love adding superfoods to my diet to help boost my immune system, increase my nutritional intake and to maximize my health.
Today I will be sharing about this wonderful little gem called Goji Berries. I often use goji berries in my diet, however to be honest I did not love them at the start. Since I have learned more about them and how to use them, they have become a favourite.
The Goji berries are small but they pack a nutritional punch that you will not want to miss out on. There are over 40 species of the goji berry. The Chinese culture view the goji berry highly and rightfully so:
They are a good source of protein!!! A lot questions always arise on where do I get my protein from? Goji berries can help you out in this area. They are a complete source of protein and they contain all eight of the essential amino acids that our body needs, but can not synthesize on it’s own. Meaning we need to get these essential amino acids from our food and therefore goji berries are a great addition to your diet.
A 1/4 cup or 30 grams per serving can offer you 10 grams of fiber to your day (organic traditions)
They are a rich source of antioxidants. Luetin, zeaxanthin, beta-caroten are some of the antioxidants found in goji berries. The “goji berries contain more beta-caroten than carrots” (David Wolfe, Superfoods)
Trace Minerals and Vitamins
Goji berries are a good source of trace minerals and vitamins. They contain zinc, iron, copper, calcium, germanium, selenium, phosphorus, B6, and vitamin E. They are a source of Vitamin C and high on the ORAC Scale. However the amount of vitamin C in them seems to be a debatable point.
Goji berries have been use to help deal with stress and build the immune system. Often suggested for people who need to rebuild their energy and strength.
How to Use Goji Berries:
1. Can be used as a fun easy snack and eaten on it’s own.
2. You can soak and rehydrate them. Use the soak water in your smoothies. Or alternatively add the dry berries to your smoothie to add some bulk to your smoothies.
3. Make your own homemade trail mix or cereal. Mix some into a bag of nuts, buckwheat grouts, coconut and cacao nibs or dried organic fruits.
4. Add them to steep in your favourite herbal teas. Yummy. This is one of my favourite ways to have them.
Or use them in elaborate desserts, sauces and condiments. Put them in your homemade chocolate creations. The options are endless.
This is a my Goji Berry Chia Seed Jam. This jam is packed full of goji berries, fruit zest, chia seeds and lemon juice. Then blended in the food processor. I got this idea from one of David Wolfe’s books and decided to make a few changes. Mainly adding chia to the mixture and a few other ingredients.
I have to tweak it a bit before I share the recipe. However it will be a keeper on my list. The really interesting thing about this jam is that it could be sweet or savoury depending on your choice of ingredients.
I am excited to say that I will be growing my own goji berries this year. They will be the North American species, so we will see what happens.
Do you use goji berries in your superfood arsenal? What is your favourite way to use them?
Stay tuned for more on Superfoods…..