The strawberry is a beautifully sweet, aromatic, fiber-rich fruit packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Strawberries are one of the most well-liked fruits on the market, with a naturally delicious flavor and lots of health benefits to offer. It’s easy to agree that strawberries fit perfectly into a healthy lifestyle. Here are some details on one of America’s favorite fruits.
Nutritional Facts: The following information is provided by the USDA for 1 cup (152g) of strawberry halves.
- Calories: 49
- Fat: 0.5g
- Sodium: 1.5mg
- Carbohydrates: 11.7g
- Fiber: 3g
- Sugars: 7.4g
- Protein: 1g
Carbs: Strawberries have about 12 grams of carbohydrates per cup. This includes 3 grams of fiber and 7.4 grams of sugar. The glycemic index of strawberries is 25 and the glycemic load is 3.2
Fats: Strawberries are naturally very low in fat with a 1/2 gram per cup. The majority of these are polyunsaturated fatty acids.
Protein: Strawberries have just 1 gram of protein per cup.
Vitamins and Minerals: Strawberries are loaded with vitamin C, exceeding the daily value with just 1 cup. They are also high in potassium, folate, calcium, and magnesium.
Health Benefits: Strawberries owe their vibrant hue to the array of antioxidants they possess. Here are some of the ways that strawberries support good health.
Prevents High Blood Sugar: Berries are one of the lowest-sugar fruits, with several benefits for diabetes management. Not only are strawberries high in fiber, which helps keep blood sugars stable, they may be able to decrease the rise in blood sugar that typically occurs following a meal. By reducing the uptake and transport of glucose in the intestines, strawberries provide protection against elevated blood sugar levels.
Eases Arthritis Symptoms: Strawberries have been shown to reduce inflammation for people living with osteoarthritis of the knee. Osteoarthritis is an inflammatory condition that causes significant pain during flare-ups. Studies show that providing a 50-gram beverage of reconstituted freeze-dried strawberries over a period of 12-weeks improves the quality of life for those with osteoarthritis, likely due to strawberry’s bioactive compounds.
Promotes Wound Healing: Most adults require between 75 and 90 milligrams of vitamin C per day. With about 90 milligrams of vitamin C per cup,1 strawberries are one of the best sources of this powerful antioxidant vitamin. Vitamin C is a precursor to collagen, a structural component of skin.
Since our bodies are unable to produce or store vitamin C, a water-soluble vitamin, it’s essential that we consume it through food daily. Getting enough vitamin C provides the building blocks required to repair injuries and heal wounds.
Promotes Heart Health: Strawberries have fiber, which may help keep cholesterol and triglyceride levels in check. The flavonoids and potassium in strawberries work to lower high blood pressure. In addition, strawberries are a good source of vitamin C and folate, two key nutrients for heart health. With anti-inflammatory and antioxidant benefits, strawberries are a delicious way to protect your cardiovascular system.
May Reduce Risk of Colon Cancer: Irritable bowel disease has been linked to increased rates of colon cancer, with both conditions associated with lower fruit and veggie consumption along with a high intake of animal fats. A large review of studies indicates that eating more strawberries can help.
Strawberries have been shown to improve markers of oxidative stress due to their high concentration of anthocyanins. Given their general popularity, the promotion of strawberry intake is a widely accepted recommendation.
Allergies: Strawberry allergies are possible and may also involve a cross-reactivity with other fruits, like grapes and cherries. Common symptoms include hives, shortness of breath, or throat tightness. If you suspect an allergy to strawberries, see an allergist for testing.
Varieties: There are many varieties of strawberries that fall within the categories of June bearing, everbearing, and day-neutral. June bearers may be available in the springtime. Examples include Earligrow, Annapolis, Seneca, Jewel, and Allstar.
Everbearing strawberries produce fruit three times: during spring, summer, and fall. Tristar and Tribute are varieties of everbearing strawberries. Day-neutral strawberries provide fruit all throughout the season. They grow well with limited space and can be planted as a groundcover.
In Season: Select strawberries that are rich and uniformly red. Avoid mushy berries that exhibit signs of mold. You can find fresh strawberries in the grocery store any time of the year, but they’re best during spring and summer, fresh off the farm. Check your local farmers market or find locations to pick your own berries for the sweetest and ripest fruit.
If possible, choose organic strawberries to avoid pesticides commonly used in conventional growing. You can also purchase frozen organic strawberries for extra sweetness and a boost of nutrition at any time of the year.
Storage and Food Safety: Pick through your package of strawberries before storing them to remove any damaged fruit. Store strawberries in the coldest part of your refrigerator, like the vegetable crisper. Keep strawberries sealed in a container to reduce air circulation. Use within 1 week, or ideally, within 3 days.
Fresh strawberries must be washed under running water before eating or slicing. If you don’t have a chance to eat all of your fresh strawberries before they will go bad, you can freeze them individually on a baking sheet and transfer to a freezer bag for later use.