Goji Berries: Health Benefits
What are goji berries?
Goji berries are sweet, bright orange-red colored fruits that grow on bushes in Asia. They are also called wolfberries and originate from a shrub native to China. Goji berries have been eaten for generations throughout Asia for their health benefits, high levels of antioxidants and anti-aging properties. The variety with the highest levels of immune-stimulating polysaccharides is called Lycium barbarum, known as the Ningxia wolfberry.
Goji berries can be eaten raw, cooked, dried (like raisins) or mixed into juices. They are commonly used in herbal teas, wines, and oriental medicines, as well as sprinkled on top of foods like yogurt and cereals.
What Are The Health Benefits Of Goji Berries?
Research shows that eating berries offers definite health benefits. Berries such as wolfberries, blueberries, raspberries, cranberries, strawberries, and cherries are full of powerful antioxidants and other nutrients which boost health, prevent disease, and keep the heart healthy. But what are the specific health benefits of goji berries?
According to Wikipedia:
Published studies have also reported possible medicinal benefits of Lycium barbarum (goji berries), especially due to its antioxidant properties, including potential benefits against cardiovascular and inflammatory diseases, vision-related diseases (such as age-related macular degeneration and glaucoma), having neuroprotective properties or as an anticancer and immunomodulatory agent.
Wolfberry leaves may be used to make tea, together with Lycium root bark (called dìgupí; in Chinese), for traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). A glucopyranoside and phenolic amides isolated from wolfberry root bark have inhibitory activity in vitro against human pathogenic bacteria and fungi.
In Asia, goji berries are considered the world’s most nutrient-dense food and are called the “longevity fruit.” Wolfberries have a long tradition of use in folk medicine. Traditionally, Asian people have used goji berries to treat many common health problems such as liver and kidney problems, diabetes, high blood pressure, fever, and eye problems (especially those related to aging).
- Ancient Chinese medical texts extolled wolfberries for strengthening the eyes, liver, and kidneys as well as fortifying the “qi” (chi), or life force.*
- An early medical work, Shen Nung Ben Tsao (475–221 B.C.), sited benefits for wolfberries ranging from replenishing vital essences to strengthening and restoring major organs.*
- The physician’s handbook, Ben Cao Gang Mu, written during the Ming Dynasty (1368–1644 A.D.), stated, “Taking in Chinese wolfberry regularly may regulate the flow of vital energy and strengthen the physique, which can lead to longevity.”
- According to other ancient Chinese texts, wolfberries:
- - Nourish the yin - Support the blood, kidneys, and liver*
- - Strengthen the eyes*
- - Fortify muscles and bones*
Immune System Support
Wolfberries (especially those in NingXia Red juice) are shown to support immune function. Studies show that wolfberries are effective at inhibiting inflammation and may induce an immune response.*
A landmark study published in the Journal of the American Nutraceutical Association concluded,
“Wolfberry juice and its mixtures were shown to have immunomodulatory effects by increasing splenic (spleen) microphages and splenic weight.”* There are a number of other studies that correlate increased spleen weight and improved immunological function.
- Chinese scientists found that the wolfberry polysaccharide has “definite protective effects” on pancreas cells that regulate our body’s insulin system, the islets of Langerhans.*
- Other researchers have determined that special substances found in wolfberries have “prominent hepatoprotective activity,” meaning that they help protect the liver.*
Historically, the goji berry is thought to:
- Increase stamina and endurance and help to eliminate fatigue, especially when recovering from illness.
- Protect the liver: Researchers have recently determined that substances found in wolfberries have “prominent hepatoprotective activity,” meaning that they help protect the liver.*
- Inhibit inflammation: Studies done in Beijing, China, show wolfberries to be effective in inhibiting inflammation and that they may induce an immune response.*
- Stimulate the production of hGH (human growth hormone), the youth hormone: This is why goji berries are thought to help people lose weight, sleep better, improve their memory, restore libido and look younger.
- Improve vision: Goji berries are rich in carotenoids, vitamins and nutrients, especially vitamin A. Studies show that people who eat or drink goji/wolfberry juice adapt to darkness faster than those who don’t.
- Provide anti-aging support: High antioxidant foods help minimize cell and DNA damage from free radicals. Because antioxidants minimize the destructive power of free radicals, they help reduce the risk of many serious diseases. And, the less damage your cells have, the younger you look!
- It has been traditionally believed that goji berries help in preventing cancer. The wolfberry’s unique polysaccharides and high antioxidant levels are thought to protect against genetic mutations that can lead to cancer. In Asia, scientist and oriental doctors often recommend goji berry supplements for their liver protection and polysaccharide cancer prevention action.
- Help prevent heart disease. The antioxidants and high levels of nutrients in goji berries support the healthy functioning of the heart.
Today, a strong body of modern scientific evidence supports the wolfberry’s legendary reputation.
Is Every Gogi Berry Equal?
The Ningxia variety of Lycium barbarum, as reported by the Xinhaua News Agency, “is far superior to ordinary Chinese wolfberry in both tonic effects and economic results.” Of the eighty different species of wolfberries worldwide, the Lycium barbarum variety of Ningxia is believed to have the highest levels of immune-stimulating polysaccharides.*
Due to its superior quality, some medical studies done on the wolfberry have specified the use of the Ningxia wolfberry. And the Ningxia wolfberry won three gold prizes in the China Agricultural Fair and a gold prize in the Malaysia International Food Fair.
If you are not drinking or eating the Ningxia variety of Lycium barbarum, you may not be getting the promised benefits.NingXia Red Juice unique.
Combined, these juices have more antioxidant activity than any one juice alone. And that synergy multiplies the benefits for your body.
Not only do tests prove that NingXia Red is synergized, but scientists have confirmed the benefits of whole food synergy. Researchers at Cornell University concluded that a synergistic and additive effect is why whole fruits and vegetables have potent antioxidant activity.
Try NingXia Red juice today!
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* This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.