Goji Berries are known as “red diamonds” in many parts of the Asia and have true superfood status due to their abundant supply of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. What makes these so good for us? Read on.
First written about in the first century B.C., Goji belong to a class of herbs known as tonics, which when taken over time, keep us healthy and vibrant. One study in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine showed that consumption of Goji Berries led to increased energy level, athletic performance, better quality of sleep, ease of awakening, ability to focus on activities, mental acuity, calmness, and feelings of health, contentment, and happiness.
Scientists have found this fruit to be important for maintaining healthy, youthful skin due to the following attributes:
- Minerals - Goji berries contain 11 of the 22 essential dietary trace minerals, including calcium, potassium, iron, zinc, and selenium. Each has a different action, but they can all help firm, tighten and plump the appearance of your skin.
- Amino Acids - Amino acids form the building blocks of proteins (including collagen) and can help smooth the look of your skin, and improve tone and color. They also help improve skin hydration. Best of all, they're non-irritating.
- Vitamin C - Goji berries contain a high amount of vitamin C, which supports collagen production therefore firming and tightening the skin. This antioxidant protects the skin from environmental stress. When used externally, it’s been shown to help reduce the appearance of age spots.
- Carotenoids - These are flavonoids like beta-carotene, zeaxanthin, lutein, lycopene, crytoxanthin, and xanthophyll. These protect and are known to help maintain a healthy glow in the skin. They can also help regulate oil production.
- Polysaccharides - These components have antioxidant properties, firm and tighten the skin, and increase it’s moisture content.
Mildly raisin-like, but more tart in taste, these colorful berries are often found and can be used in trail mix, added to oatmeal or sometimes found covered in chocolate!
Have you used goji berries? If so, leave your favorite way to consume these glowy skin-inducing “red diamonds” in the comments.
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Dr Mary Claire Dilks is a Doctor of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine, owner of Emerging Energy Acupuncture in Providence (RI), and has been named Best Of RI ("Best Inner Healing"). Visit her at www.emergingenergy.net.