Who doesn't like strawberries seriously?
Not only are they delicious to eat, go easy on the eyes but also pack a punch when it comes to the health benefits that they possess.
Experts say that strawberries contain 136% of the recommended dietary allowance of Vitamin C, making it one of the very best antioxidant sources that you can find.
Yet with experts telling us that the supermarket is not necessarily the best place to buy strawberries or seasonal fruit for that matter, keeping this in mind, several farms have begun the u-pick concept which allows customers to pick your own strawberries, apples or the fruit of your choice.
It's an age-old concept that has reached full circle, if you will, and in most cases, ends up being a win-win situation for both customers and farmers. The former are able to pick fruits that are fresh and in season while also paying much less for their efforts as harvesters of the produce themselves.
However, before we delve into the advantages of visiting one of these u-pick farms, let's look at the health benefits of strawberries.
Health Benefits of Strawberries
As mentioned earlier, there are several benefits associated with strawberries. So, here is a list of these benefits that should encourage you of the advantages of visiting these farms:
#1: Protects the Cardiovascular System
With the presence of anti-inflammatory nutrients as well as antioxidants, strawberries rank as one of the world's healthiest foods as it protect our cardiovascular system from oxidative and inflammatory damage. The amount of Vitamin C present in strawberries is almost twice as much as that present in an orange.
#2: Blood Sugar
Studies have shown that if an individual has 2-3 servings of strawberries, this impacts their blood sugar levels as well as decreases the risk for Type 2 Diabetes. This benefit can be attributed to a polyphenol known as "ellagitannins" which, serve an important purpose, in preventing the release of an enzyme known as alpha-amylase.
Yet again, thanks to the presence of a large number of antioxidants as well as anti-inflammatory phytonutrients, they reduce oxidative and inflammatory damage caused to the tissue in our bodies. Since the reasons for cancer are usually related to oxidative and inflammatory damage, it can be inferred that a regular intake of strawberries can do a lot to prevent cancer.
With that said, it's imperative that you obtain strawberries that are fresh and in season, and which is why visiting a U-Pick farm is probably the best thing to do.
Pick Your Own Strawberries – Tips to Remember at a U-Pick Farm
If you do have a U-Pick farm in the vicinity, then here are some simple tips to pick your own strawberries:
#1: Depending on your location, spring and early summer are the best times to find fresh strawberries.
#2: Distinguishing between ripe and unripe strawberries requires you to keep two things in mind: look for a bright, red color combined with a natural shine and fresh green caps while also possessing a floral fragrance that is clearly indicative of the fact that it is ripe and ready to be eaten.
#3: Remember that the smallest strawberries are often the tastiest. So, don't get rid of a few that don't look big enough.
#4: Avoid strawberries that have blemishes in the form of white or green spots or are dark red in color. The fruit should not 'give way' too much or feel resistant to pressure either.
Do you have any other tips for those who wish to pick ripe strawberries when visiting these farms? If so, feel free to share your thoughts and experiences.
Also, if you've just heard about a U-pick farm by reading this blog and don't know where to find one, here's a link that can help you get started.