Blueberries are some of the most popular fruits out there. They are small, so it's easy to snack on them, and they're also incredibly delicious. However, it might be hard to know what foods you can safely consume when following a specific diet. This is especially true when struggling with acid reflux or GERD.
In this case, it's beneficial to know the acidity levels of foods.
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Are blueberries acidic?
Blueberries are a somewhat acidic fruit. They lie on the lower end of the pH scale, making them a fruit that shouldn't be consumed too often on low-acid diets. Nevertheless, blueberries are healthy and safe to consume but in moderation.
They also contain many antioxidants that help prevent many diseases and micronutrients that contribute to maintain proper health.
What is the pH level of blueberries?
The ph level of blueberries varies depending on the variety, but it stays within the 3.11-3.33 range. As a result, they are considered acidic. However, this doesn't mean that they shouldn't be a part of a healthy, balanced diet. They are a good source of many vitamins, and if consumed in small quantities, they won't increase stomach acid production.
When considering all fruit, blueberries are some of the least acidic ones, making them healthy for people with acid reflux and GERD. Most berries aren't as acidic as other types of fruit and are rich in nutrients, so their health benefits balance their acidity.
Blueberries are also filling, so it might be relatively difficult to consume too many of them in order to trigger any acid reflux or GERD symptoms.
How healthy are blueberries?
Often called a superfood, blueberries are relatively low in calories, containing only around 84 per cup. They are also about 85% water, contributing to proper hydration. In addition, blueberries don't have any fat, which often worsens the symptoms of acid reflux and GERD.
In addition, blueberries are rich in vitamin K. This micronutrient contributes to blood clotting and wound healing — two very important metabolic functions. Just a 1-cup serving of blueberries provides 36% of your daily recommended need for vitamin K, which is a good amount considering the calories this fruit has.
Blueberries are also loaded with antioxidants. These substances help your body get rid of free radicals that damage your cells. Consuming a diet rich in antioxidants prevents certain cancers and age-related diseases.
On top of that, blueberries have been shown to increase the naturally occurring antioxidants in your body, soothing inflammation and promoting gut health.
These antioxidants, along with substances called anti-adhesive, help prevent urinary tract infections as well.
Furthermore, blueberries may have anti-diabetes effects. Even though one cup contains 15 grams of sugar, the bioactive compounds in blueberries outweigh any negative impact of the sugar. It also means that consuming blueberries helps control blood sugar levels and has a positive effect on insulin sensitivity and glucose metabolism.
Additionally, this fruit protects the cholesterol in your blood from damage. When your blood cholesterol is oxidized, it turns the cholesterol "bad," leading to many heart problems and blood clots. The antioxidants in blueberries help prevent this oxidization, lowering it by almost 27%.
>Measuring pH levels isn't only for science and academic purposes. These days, many people buy pH meters to test the acidity of the foods they consume and the liquids they drinks. In addition, it is often done to ensure that you're consuming a primarily alkaline diet filled with low-acid foods. Here are the best pH meters on the market.
The oxidation damage isn't only limited to blood cholesterol, though — DNA can also be damaged. So it's important to consume antioxidant-rich foods.
Some studies have also indicated that blueberries improve memory and brain function. The same antioxidants that flush out free radicals help in preventing brain cells from degrading. For instance, drinking blueberry juice can help in cognitive thinking and improve cognitive impairment.
Are blueberries bad for acid reflux?
Blueberries are acidic. So if you're following a low-acid diet, it's best to limit their consumption. Eating too many blueberries can worsen the symptoms of acid reflux and GERD.
However, this fruit also contains many essential nutrients that can potentially help gut health and digestion. So, it's important not to eliminate any healthy veggies and fruit from your diet unless you can't tolerate them.
As always, it's essential to listen to your body and how it reacts to certain foods. Some people might be able to consume more blueberries than others, so it all depends on the individual. Hence, it's vital to start slow when introducing a new fruit or veggie to your diet.
Is blueberry juice bad for acid reflux?
Blueberry juice has around the same pH level as raw blueberries. However, it lacks the same amount of fiber that the whole fruit has.
This means that it won't absorb any stomach acid and may worsen the symptoms of acid reflux and GERD. As a result, most doctors recommend consuming whole berries as opposed to drinking the juices.
What's more, to make blueberry juice, you have to use a lot more blueberries than you would if you snacked on them. This, in turn, increases the sugar content, and sugar is hard to digest. This can cause stomach acid to reflux back up to your esophagus, causing heartburn and other symptoms.
Is blueberry jam bad for acid reflux?
To make a jam from any fruit, it's not only necessary to use a lot of fruit but also sugar. Blueberries are naturally acidic, and when coupled with sugar, they slow down digestion and cause excess stomach acid production. Nevertheless, this is only the case for store-bought jams as those are often loaded with additives.
Hence, if you like putting some jam on your sandwiches or pancakes, you might want to consider making the jam yourself.
That way, there will be no added sugars, only those naturally occurring in fruits. If you decide to make your own jam, it's best to opt for organic fruit since it's free from pesticides and other chemicals that can negatively impact your health.
Blueberries are a relatively acidic fruit, so it's best to limit the quantities that you're consuming. However, it's considered to be a superfood that's rich in nutrients and comes with many health benefits.
As a result, it might be a good idea to incorporate blueberries into your diet, even if in small amounts.