Goji Berries – Also known as wolfberries are native to the Himalayan Mountains of Tibet and Mongolia, and are now grown in many other countries as well.
They have been harvested with care by monks for nearly 5,000 years and have been legendary in Tibetan and Chinese medicines.
Goji berries grow on an evergreen shrub found in temperate and subtropical regions in China, Mongolia and in the Himalayas in Tibet.
When ripe, the oblong, red berries are tender and must be picked carefully or shaken from the vine into trays to avoid spoiling. The fruits are preserved by drying them in full sun on open trays or by mechanical dehydration employing a progressively increasing series of heat exposure over 48 hours.
Goji berries are deep red in color and are often eaten like raisins.
Goji berries are considered the most nutritionally dense fruit on earth and are rich in anti-aging agents, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals.
Treasured in Tibet and China for longevity and energy, Goji berries and wolfberries became the focus of intense medical research when scientists discovered these fruits contained an abundance of health promoting constituents including: 18 amino acids, 21 trace minerals, 6 essential fatty acids, vitamins B1, B2, B6, vitamin E, and more beta-carotene than carrots, more vitamin C than oranges, and more antioxidant power than any other food.
Additionally, these berries have been found to have extremely high levels of immune stimulating polysaccharides, and, were found to have an astonishing 13 -16% protein by weight. They are also a rich source of both selenium and germanium and have been used in a number of clinical trials involving cancer patients.
In addition they boast 15 times the amount of iron found in spinach, as well as calcium, zinc, selenium and many other important trace minerals, there is no doubt that the goji berry is a nutritional powerhouse.
This amazing little super-fruit also contains natural anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and anti-fungal compounds. Their powerful antioxidant properties and polysaccharides help to boost the immune system. It’s no wonder then, that in traditional Chinese medicine they are renowned for increasing strength and longevity.
Goji has been used to treat inflammation, skin irritations, aches and pains, and has been used as a sedative. It has also been used in combination with other botanicals to treat poor vision, anemia, and cough.
HOW TO ENJOY
Gojis are most commonly available in dried form, and make a great snack added to trail mix, muesli or oatmeal. They can also be soaked for a couple of hours in enough water to cover them; then the water can be drained off and makes a delicious drink, or both water and berries can be added to smoothies.
These berries taste delicious in cereal, yogurt and salads. Add them to recipes for muffins and breads. You can also consume Goji berries as the monks do, steeped in tea, added to soup, or simply eat them by themselves.
Please note that there can be adverse interactions if you consume goji berries while also taking medication for diabetes, blood pressure, or blood thinners. So be sure to consult your health care provider if that is the case.
WHERE TO BUY
Gojis can often be found in Asian food stores, but most of these come from the commercial growing regions of China and Tibet, and contain high levels of pesticides and synthetic fertilizers. Even some brands which claim to be organic may not be, so be sure to source your goji berries from a reputable source.
Where can you buy Goji Berries, Sun-Dried?
Here is a great source.
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