Blueberries are an extremely popular fruit globally and can be eaten on their own or baked into cakes or pies. They're delicious and sweet, and when blended into a smoothie, the color is just gorgeous.
Most people assume that all fruits are a safe, healthy addition to a balanced diet, as they don't contain processed sugars and fats. However, with more and more people following a diet aimed at a specific health problem, this may only be true for some.
If you're prone to kidney stones, you know how unpleasant they are, and you may follow a diet low in oxalates to reduce the likelihood of them forming.
If you're starting a low-oxalate diet, you need to know which foods are high in oxalates and which are not, and this includes fruits.
Blueberries are low in oxalates, so they're a safe, healthy dietary addition for those on a low-oxalate diet. Half a cup of blueberries contains only 2 mg of oxalates, and any food containing less than 10 mg per serving is considered low oxalate.
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Are Blueberries Good for You?
Blueberries are highly nutritious but low in calories, which makes them a great snack for those trying to lose weight. A cup of blueberries contains only 84 calories, but has plenty of fiber, vitamins C and K, and manganese.
Blueberries contain the most antioxidants among commonly eaten fruits, and antioxidants flush out free radicals that can damage cells, leading to cancer and other chronic disease.
Everyone ages, but eating blueberries may help prevent age-related diseases, as they reduce oxidative stress in your body. Oxidative stress accelerates the aging of your brain.
Scientists even believe that blueberries may help you retain your memory longer.
Most people associate cranberries with reducing urinary tract infections, but blueberries may help too.
Can I Eat Blueberries If I'm Prone to Kidney Stones?
You can! Blueberries are low in oxalates, so they're safe for those prone to kidney stones or kidney disease.
However, although they're low in oxalates, eat them in moderation to ensure you don't reach your recommended oxalate intake only by eating blueberries.
Foods With a Similar Oxalate Content to Blueberries
Not all fruits are as low in oxalates as blueberries. However, below are some with similar content:
- Blackberries: 2 mg per half cup
- Pears: 1 mg per piece
- Strawberries: 2 mg per half cup
- Applesauce: 2 mg per cup
- Apples: 1 mg per piece
RELATED: Is Avocado High in Oxalates?
What Country Grows the Most Blueberries?
The United States produces the most, with the majority coming from Michigan, Washington, Florida, and Georgia.
Canada also produces a lot, mainly in Quebec, as does Poland.
How Many Types of Blueberries Are There?
There are four types of blueberry: highbush, lowbush, hybrid half-high, and rabbit eye.
The most common is highbush, and these are what you'll likely purchase from your grocery store.
Ways to Eat More Blueberries
A handful of blueberries is a healthy, delicious snack, but they can also be added to pancakes or waffles.
Blueberries are great in salads; for example, swap the strawberries in a strawberry and poppyseed salad for blueberries. Or just add blueberries to the original recipe.
Blueberries are an excellent topping for yogurt or oatmeal, adding color, flavor, and nutrients to both.