By Southwest Health’s Healthbeat Committee

Fruits and vegetables are generally wholesome, healthy foods, right? But did you know that especially fruit possesses pretty amazing powers? Check out these fruit-full tips recently compiled by our employee wellness group, the Healthbeat Committee:

Blueberries have the highest antioxidant value of any fruit. They can boost up your immune system, help prevent infections, and neutralize free radicals which can help protects againts disease and aging. In fact, it’s anthocyanin, the chemical responsible for the blue color of the berry that’s also responsible for its free-radical-reducing effects.

Just one lemon has more than 100% of your daily need of vitamin C, which can help increase “good” HDL cholesterol levels. Adding a slice to your green tea increases the body’s ability to absorb antioxidants by about 80%.

Avocados are a fruit that is wonderfully rich in healthy, satisfying fats. Avocados are also shown to lower cholesterol by about 22%. This powerhouse food also provides more than half the fiber and 40% of the folate you need daily.

Bananas can boost your mood by increasing levels of serotonin. They are also high in potassium which can prevent muscle cramps and lower blood pressure to help prevent heart attacks and strokes.

The heart-shaped silhouettes of strawberries are the first clue it is good for you. Strawberries can help lower blood pressure, lower your risk of cancer, and lower your cholesterol all at the same time. And those are just some of the benefits they offer. Did you know that just one serving (about 8 berries) has more vitamin C than an orange?

So stock up on your favorite fruits this summer, and enjoy the powerful benefits each has to offer. And if you’re looking for an easy way to maximize your fruit intake, try this simple and delicious Blender Bottle Recipe:

  • 12 oz. freshly squeezed orange juicebannana-shake
  • 1 serving egg white powder or vanilla whey protein powder
  • 1 mashed banana
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp. ground flaxseed (optional)
  • 1 tbsp. lecithin (optional)

Add all the ingredients in this order, and shake until smooth.

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