July is national Blueberry month and we’re celebrating by learning as much as we can about the small super fruit with big health benefits!
3 Fun Facts about Blueberries and Brain Health:
- There are two types of blueberries, high bush and low bush.Highbush blueberries are what you buy at the local grocery store or farmers market.Lowbush blueberries are used to make juices and jams and are a little sweeter.
- Ten states grow 98% of the US’ blueberries.Those states are: California, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Michigan, Mississippi, New Jersey, North Carolina, Oregon and Washington.
- Blueberries are colored blue because of the antioxidant anthocyanins.In addition to giving blueberries their fun color the antioxidants found in blueberries work to make this fruit a “super fruit” providing many health benefits.From the potential to lower the risk of heart disease and cancer to the ability to improve memory and cognition this small berry packs a big punch!
At Northbridge, our Eat Fresh, Eat Local program insures that our residents get fresh blueberries from local farms that are incorporated to their daily meals and desserts. Blueberries and brain health being linked is very important to our Culinary teams. Our experienced chefs work hard to create tasty, nutritious recipes.
But how are blueberries and brain health connected?
Studies have found that eating blueberries improves memory and cognitive function in older adults. This is because berry fruits change the way neurons in the brain communicate, preventing inflammation in the brain that contributes to neural damage and improving both motor control and cognition.
According to a 2002 study by the US Agricultural Research Service, by simply adding blueberries to your diet you are increasing the birth rate of cells in the hippocampus, the region of the brain that is responsible for memory.
Most research has found that blueberries are most helpful and effective in treating those who are already experiencing cognitive decline versus those who are not but it’s never too early to start including this memory boosting snack into your diet!
Don’t take our word for it, peak blueberry season for most of the country is mid-June to mid-August- so get out and get picking!
We have such talented chefs here at Northbridge Communities. Here are two Eat Fresh, Eat Local takes on incorporating blueberries into your diet.
With a sweet & lemony glaze, this is sure to mix up weeknight meals!
Blueberry Oatmeal Cookies
A twist on a classic, this cookie is a treat both healthy and delectable!
Some of our favorite local farms for pick your own:
Parlee Farms – Tyngsboro, MA
Coonamessett Farm – Falmouth, MA
Orchard Ridge Farm – Gorham, ME
Discover life at a Northbridge community
If you’re considering senior living for yourself or a family member, we hope you’ll visit one of our communities. You’ll find a maintenance-free, activity-filled and engaging lifestyle to help support your wellness goals.
You’ll also discover many benefits in a Northbridge Senior Living community, including our Signature Program S.T.A.R. Club (Sharp Thinking, Active Residents) – which offers our residents several activities to participate in with others, including:
- Daily exercise group
- Walking club
- Tai Chi & yoga
- Nutritional classes
- Library and book club
- Museum outings
- Artists in residence program
- Multi-generational music
- Genealogy Generations
If you are considering senior living as the right choice for yourself or a loved one, we invite you to Find a Northbridge Community near you to learn more. We look forward to getting to know you!