Berries are healthy, but they are often come in large quantities and are eaten with high calorie foods. Discover how to enjoy berries and avoid weight gain.
It has been found that berries have a highly concentrated supply of antioxidants, because these nutrients are usually found in the skin of fruit. Berries have a high proportion of skin to fruit. Moreover, berries are low in calories. On average, one cup of blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, strawberries or cranberries is only about 60 calories.
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Berries and High Calorie Foods
Unfortunately, berries are not as sweet as some fruits. Although berries are a high fiber, low-calorie food, their popularity may be contributing to weight gain. Because berries are so tart, they are commonly eaten with very sweet, high caloric foods.
Berries are mixed with sugar and eaten in pies, cakes and ice cream, or glazed and piled on pancakes. Muffins are often filled with fresh berries. The berries are healthy, but muffins are full of sugar and fatty oils. Dieters seeking to get their berries in a healthy way need to avoid these foods. Berries are seldom eaten raw and alone, so it is a challenge to find ways to eat fresh berries.
It is Hard to Keep Fresh Berries
- It is also a challenge to buy fresh berries, because they are usually sold in amounts required for a pie.
- When large amounts of berries are purchased, they get moldy fast, even when refrigerated.
- Fresh berries are sold separately, making it difficult to obtain a variety of berries in a single purchase.
We Do Not Need Pounds of Berries to Benefit from Berries
Many are under the impression that we need lots of healthy foods to derive the benefits from each food. If this were true, we would all be fat. Nuts are healthy, but a bag of nuts a day would make one obese. We only need a few berries a day.
Traps for Gaining Weight to Get Your Berries
- One popular food containing berries is yogurt. However, only eight ounces (1cup) of low fat berry yogurt is 230 calories. The amount of berries consumed is probably minimal.
- According to “Slim Down Secrets, 7 Healthy Foods that Make You Fat,” by Jennifer Harrington, ABC15.com (April 27, 2010), berry juice is enemy number one for dieters. A few glasses of berry juice a day can use up to one fourth of caloric needs and some dieters found that they were drinking more than 1,000 calories a day in berry juice. Even fruit smoothies contain sugar.
- Another trap is the addition of berries (and often sugar) to cereal. Most cereals, including whole grain cereals, are about 100 calories for a serving of three quarters of a cup. A cup or more of cereal with milk, berries and sugar to sweeten them can really add up.
- Many breakfast bars are also adding berries to their list of ingredients. One of the lowest calorie breakfast bars is 100 calories for a single serving. But this is more calories than a Milky Way bar (97 calories), and again, the volume of berries is probably negligible.
- Beware of dark chocolate, a well-known antioxidant that is now mixed with berries to attract health food consumers. A one by two inch, quarter-inch thick piece of 63% cacao contains 200 calories per 11 gram serving. This is a very tiny piece of chocolate, and more than likely satifies the need for dark chocolate for the day, but imagine how small the berry content would be.
How to Eat Berries Without Weight Gain
- It is very easy to buy frozen berries is all varieties that can be kept frozen and used in small amounts.
- Frozen berry variety packs come in variety packs, which include raspberries, blueberries, blackberries and strawberries. They are expensive but last a long time.
- The only ingredient is berries.
- The berries thaw out very quickly, and when mixed with sweet fruits, are delicious and make a healthy, low fat snack.
Bananna and Strawberry Combo
Sliced banannas with sliced frozen strawberries are a great combination. The bannanas cancel out the tartness of the straberries and the strawberries make the bannas more tasty and fun to eat. The frozen strawberries taste delicious.
Apples and Variety Frozen Berries
Apples are one of the healthiest foods in existance, and yet they are not very appealing because of the availability of sugary snacks.
- Slice an apple into a small container.
- Sprinkle a tiny mixture of frozen berries over the apple. Allow the berries to thaw in the frige and eat the snack later or thaw the berries by putting them in a cup of cold water.
- As you eat the apple pieces, they suck up the berry juice, becoming a purplish berry color.
- The berries enhance the taste of the apples in such a way that they taste like candy.
Eating Berries Without Gaining Weight
Advertising and new products are feeding off the berry craze and luring people into eating unwanted and unhealthy amounts of calories just for the berries. Serious dieters need to know that there are ways to obtain the goodness and nutrients of low calorie berries without gaining weight.