Reader's Digest International - - Laughter - READER’S DI­GEST

FIRST READ ABOUT açai berries and goji berries a cou­ple of years ago. Orig­i­nat­ing in South Amer­i­can rain­forests and re­mote north­ern China, re­spec­tively, they were praised for their high con­cen­tra­tions of dis­ease-fight­ing an­tiox­i­dants. I found a health food store that car­ried the dried berries, and bought a small (200g) pack­age of each—at about eight euros apiece.

My hus­band and I would have a few a day, and soon had to buy more. I won­dered whether their pur­ported health ben­e­fits were worth the money, and af­ter some re­search dis­cov­ered that blue­ber­ries, fresh or frozen— widely avail­able and about half the price—are one of the best sources of an­tiox­i­dants we have. And cred­i­ble stud­ies show blue­ber­ries ac­tu­ally fight dis­ease, whereas açai and goji berries are as-yet un­proven.

New “su­per­foods” are for­ever mak­ing head­lines. We’re now hear­ing about the won­ders of teff (an Ethiopian grain), maca pow­der (Peru­vian gin­seng), ya­con root syrup (from the An­des), tree wa­ter and even pow­dered crick­ets. Sure, they may be good, even great, for you. But the health­i­est foods have been in the su­per­mar­ket all along—with mod­est price tags, and backed by re­search prov­ing they’re healthy. En­joy these as part of a bal­anced diet that in­cludes whole grains and veg­eta­bles.

Blue­ber­ries, fresh or frozen, are heart healthy.

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