A serving of eight strawberries contains more Vitamin C than an orange.Strawberries are also rich in folate, potassium and fiber. In fact, they contain more insoluble fiber that many other fruits, keeping you fuller for longer. They are second only to plums as the richest fruit in phenolics and antioxidants, being especially high in cancer and heart disease-fighting flavonoids, anthocyanins, ellagic acid, quercetin, catechin and kaempferol.
Studies on the health benefits of strawberries
Harvard researchers found strawberries to have protective qualities for a variety of cancers. A study using an extract from strawberry leaves on leukemia cells found significant cancer-killing activity.
Another study found that strawberry extracts significantly inhibited the growth of both colon and breast cancer cells. Organically cultivated strawberries had a significantly higher antiproliferative effect that the conventionally grown due to their higher antioxidant levels.
Strawberries are associated with playing a role in reducing estrogen-driven cancer as they are rich in ellagic acid, which can function as an estrogen blocker. Freeze-dried strawberries inhibited growth of two types of cervical cancer cells, andesophageal cancer tumor growth.
Eating eight strawberries a day for eight weeks lowered a leading risk factor forheart disease, homocysteine. In a similar study, the same researcher found that those who ate a serving of strawberries a day for four weeks had higher folatelevels.
A 2006 study found that the antioxidant fisetin, found in strawberries, was associated with improved memory and mental function, and protection from the onset of Alzheimer’s disease. This flavonoid was found to trigger the activation ofmemory formation processes within the brain, and also enabled better memorystorage by forming strong connections between neurons.
- Skupien, K., Oszmianski, J., Kostrzewa-Nowak, D., & Tarasiuk, J. (2006, May 18). In vitro antileukaemic activity of extracts from berry plant leaves against sensitive and multidrug resistant HL60 cells. Cancer Lett, 236(2), 282-291.
- Olsson, M.E., Andersson, C.S., Oredsson, S., Berglund, R.H., & Gustavsson, K.E. (2006, February 22). Antioxidant levels and inhibition of cancer cell proliferation in vitro by extracts from organically and conventionally cultivatedstrawberries. J Agric Food Chem, 54(4), 1248-1255.
- Papoutsi Z, et al. Evaluation of estrogenic/anti-estrogenic activity of ellagicacid via the estrogen receptor subtypes ER alpha and ER beta. JAgric Food Chem. 2005, 53:7715-20.
- Stoner, G.D., Chen, T., Kresty, L.A., Aziz, R.M., Reinemann, T., & Nines, R. (2006). Protection against esophageal cancer in rodents with lyophilized berries: potential mechanisms. Nutr cancer, 54(1), 33-46.
- Hannum, S.M. (2004). Potential impact of strawberries on human health: a review of the science. Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr, 44(1), 1-17.
- McDougall, G.J. & Stewart, D. (2005). The inhibitory effects of berrypolyphenols on digestive enzymes. Biofactors, 23(4), 189-195.
- Naemura, A., Mitani, T., Ijiri, Y., Tamura, Y., Yamashita, T., Okimura, M., & Yamamoto, J. (2005, October). Anti-thrombotic effect of strawberries. BloodCoagul Fibrinolysis, 16(7), 501-509.