Do you wonder how many calories blackberries contain, or if there are some side effects to overeating? If the answer is yes, you’ve come to the right place! In this article, we’ll explore blackberry nutrition in detail, share our tips on how to include more of them in your regular diet, and answer some of the most frequently asked questions.
What Are Blackberries?
Blackberries are one of the edible kinds of berries, but there are actually over 300 different species of this fruit, differing slightly among each other. They originated in Europe and have been a part of the European diet for thousands of years now. With time, they have started to be cultivated worldwide, and now, blackberries may be found all around the globe, also in the wild.
They may be small, but the blackberry nutrition profile is truly striking – they are packed with health benefits, being a rich source of vitamin C, vitamin K, vitamin A, fiber, antioxidants, and more.
Benefits of Blackberries
People often wonder if fruits have any carbs. Well, there are carbs in blackberries, but they are only rich in indigestible carbs – dietary fiber – which makes them perfect for all people following strict diets, as they do not break down into sugar molecules (as digestible carbs do).
Fiber is a type of carbohydrate and is essential to maintaining the right levels of sugar in your blood. There are soluble and insoluble kinds of fiber, and blackberries contain both of them, which means that they support regular bowel movements and nourish beneficial gut bacteria, promoting healthy digestion and lower blood sugar levels, and maintain a healthy level of cholesterol.
By eating as little as 100g of blackberries, you’re getting as much as 35% of a vitamin C dosage recommended for an adult human daily. Everyday intake of vitamin C is crucial for our health, as human bodies aren’t capable of producing their own. And how vital this vitamin is to our health is reflected in a variety of processes it is involved in: keeping the immune system strong, producing collagen, which contributes to wound healing and skin regeneration, helping in iron absorption, or regulating neurotransmitters.
Vitamin C also works as an antioxidant, eliminating or at least slowing cell damage caused by free radicals (molecules released by various toxins in our bodies).
Blackberries are rich in vitamin K, which is essential for the process of blood clotting. Therefore, it is necessary for healing, as it plays a vital part in the production of many proteins. It is especially important to control your levels of vitamin K if you take any blood thinners. The right daily intake of this vitamin will also help you keep your bones strong and healthy and support your metabolism.
Blackberries contain quite a lot of vitamin A, which plays a vital role in boosting your immune system, promoting the healthy growth of teeth and bones, keeping skin in good condition, and supporting eyesight.
According to the study, blackberries have one of the highest contents of antioxidants, which are necessary for reducing or even preventing cell damage caused by harmful free radicals. Incorporating these fruits into your regular diet may be extremely helpful in improving your athletic performance, and keeping you in overall good health.
Anthocyanins are water-soluble vacuolar pigments that give blackberries their characteristic dark color. But that is not all – anthocyanins are counted among phytonutrients, which are food compounds known for their various health benefits. They contribute to reducing the risk of heart diseases, cancer, and many other conditions.
Apart from that, there has been some study conducted suggesting that they can help protect your brain from the effects of stress, and may take part in delaying or even preventing some age-related conditions, such as Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
Another preliminary study connects it to another compound, polyphenols, which may help maintain cognitive and motor skills; and contribute to reducing brain inflammation.
It may not be the most critical mineral when comparing it to calcium or magnesium, but it is actually vital for keeping your immune system strong and developing healthy bones. It also takes part in metabolizing carbs, cholesterol, and amino acids, absorbing dietary calcium, as well as supporting vitamin C and collagen production. Manganese will help you prevent osteoporosis and keep the right blood sugar levels.
Low in Calories
Blackberries are delicious and can easily pass for a tasty snack for every sweet tooth out there. What is so great about them is their calorie content. One cup of blackberries of around 145 g will contain as little as 43 calories, which is quite amazing, considering that they also have 35% of the daily recommended intake of vitamin C and 20% of the daily value of dietary fiber. They have a specific, sweet-and-sour taste, but they are very low in sugar. Now that’s a snack!
Apart from that, blackberries may also make you feel more full after you have eaten. Factoring in the low calorie, fat, and carb content, they really make the perfect companion for everyone struggling with weight management.
How to Include More Blackberries in Your Diet
Since there are so many benefits to eating blackberries, you are probably ready to start buying them daily and eating them on their own while watching your favorite show or reading a book. While this isn’t a bad idea at all, there are different ways to incorporate these fruits into your diet. It’s better to try various recipes to avoid getting bored.
This is an obvious choice when it comes to incorporating any fruits into your diet. Smoothies can be a fantastic addition to your everyday life, as they are so versatile that it’s very difficult to get bored with their tastes.
Simply mix some water with yogurt or your favorite type of milk, add some blackberries and balance their sour taste with a milder and sweeter banana. The proportions will vary depending on your preferred consistency of a smoothie and your favorite flavors. Smoothies are very often supplemented with honey, flaxseeds, chia seeds, coconut shreds, etc.
Oats for Breakfast
Breakfast is the most important meal, so why shouldn’t you start your days with nutrient-dense oats? Oats are very easy to make and rich in fiber, protein, and other essential nutrition, depending on what you like and add to your mix.
- Take a yogurt of your choice (Greek is recommended, but you can experiment with what you prefer) and mix it with an equal amount of your chosen milk (can be plant-based) and oats.
- Let it sit in your fridge overnight.
- In the morning, simply add blackberries or other of your favorite fruits.
- If you like, you can also add some nuts, a bit of pure vanilla extract for enhanced flavor, or coconut shreds.
- Take a small pot and pour your preferred milk.
- Once it’s warm, add some oats and wait a moment until they absorb some of the liquid.
- Add blackberries or anything else you may like – other fruits, vanilla extract, maple syrup, cinnamon, nuts, etc.
- Cook for several minutes until oats are as tender as you want them. Keep stirring.
- If you don’t like them warm, you can add ingredients, such as fruits, nuts, or yogurt, once the oats are done.
Salad for Lunch
A blackberry will go well not only with a sweeter, milder meal. If you like to mix your tastes, you can add a handful of blackberries to your favorite salad. Whether you have your greens with chicken, fried tofu, cheese, or toasted almonds, fruits will make the meal more interesting.
Parfait for Dessert
If you follow a strict diet or simply try to limit your daily sugar intake, you probably are the saddest about giving up desserts. But worry no more – fruity, blackberry parfait may be as delicious as its a high-sugar alternative.
- Crush some cookies of your choice (low-sugar ones, preferably, but we don’t judge!).
- Blend cream cheese, half a cup of condensed milk, quarter a cup of fresh lemon juice, and a teaspoon of pure vanilla extract.
- Let it sit in the fridge until it sets.
- Add some whipped cream or its sugar-free alternative to the batter and mix it until it’s smooth.
- Lay down the cookie crumbs, blackberries (or a mixture of berries), and the batter in layers in a container.
The batter can be easily replaced with low-fat yogurt.
A Tip: Treat Blackberries like an Addition
Don’t be afraid to experiment a little bit. Berries are truly amazing when it comes to matching different tastes, so if you have only just discovered their wonders, you can start by adding them to anything you like and discover new, incredible tastes.
Use blackberries as toppings to your cereals and oats, eat them on their own or with yogurt, cover them with peanut butter, blend with spinach and banana, add to your favorite chicken salad, or prepare a blackberry sauce for chicken or pork. Try various things and decide what you like the most!
Are There Any Disadvantages to Eating Blackberries?
Unless you are allergic to them, blackberries are 100% safe for you and have no side effects on your body or mind. However, you probably wouldn’t like to overeat. You need to stay reasonable and keep your diet well-balanced and diversified.
But if you really want them to bring all their benefits, it is best to choose fresh or frozen fruits, and not to buy products with added sugar. Canned blackberries are very often supplemented with a very sweet syrup. Hence, they are much higher in sugar and calories.
Blackberries are truly remarkable. They are both delicious and extremely healthy for all of us. They go well with a variety of foods or serve as tasty snacks while ensuring that you stay strong and in good health, as they are a rich source of vitamins and provide proper nutrition.
Some studies are only preliminary, but they only suggest that blackberries can actually be even more beneficial than we already think them to be. Therefore, it is definitely worth incorporating them into your diet, especially when it is so easy. Eating healthy doesn’t have to be boring!