Strawberries: calories, properties, benefits and side effects

Strawberries: calories, properties, benefits and side effects

Sweet and juicy fruits, rich in nutrients useful for psychophysical well-being, which can be consumed in many tasty ways

Index

  • Calories and nutritional values
  • Properties and benefits
  • Side effects
  • Strawberry cultivation

Calories and nutritional values

The plant from which strawberries are born is called Fragaria ananassa, belonging to the Rosaceae family. Strawberries are technically defined as a false fruit or, in botanical terms, conocarp: an enlarged floral receptacle on which the achenes are distributed, which would be the real fruits of the plant, generally mistaken for seeds. With a sweet taste, they are easily marketed in various forms, as well as fresh, even frozen, dried and in syrup. Strawberries provide many nutrients and can be useful for the well-being of our body and its functions. They must be consumed without excess to avoid any side effects, intestinal spasms or skin manifestations.

Strawberries, with some exceptions, are liked a little by everyone, they are a juicy and greedy fruit that boasts diuretic, purifying and refreshing properties. They are rich in mineral salts such as phosphorus, iron and calcium and vitamins A, B1, B2, C. They provide an excellent supply of fiber, with a satiating power, ideal for those who undergo low-calorie diets. In fact, 100 grams of strawberries contain 27 Kcal, with the supply of nutrients such as carbohydrates for 5.3 g, water for 90.5 g, sugars for 5.3 g, proteins for 0.9 g, fats for 0.4 g , fibers for 1.6 g.

Properties and benefits

Strawberries contain many nutrients and are useful for the well-being of our body. They contain a high percentage of calcium, an important contribution to the bone structure. The quantity of vitamin C is higher than that of oranges and represents an important antioxidant and protective contribution.

The large part of water they are made of makes them a low-calorie food suitable for slimming diets, but also for diabetic diets, also due to the presence of anthocyanins that control blood sugar levels. Strawberries contain a high content of potassium and manganese, concentration of folic acid, and ascorbic acid. They contain polyphenols, in particular fisetin, which from studies still in progress is showing interesting interactions with conditions of hypercholesterolemia, type 2 diabetes mellitus, Alzheimer's, showing antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and antiviral properties. The presence of achenes, the small granules that are seen on the external surface, confers laxative properties to the strawberry, useful in case of a lazy intestine.

The strawberry plant itself has phytotherapeutic properties. The root can be used for its purifying and diuretic action. The leaves have antidiarrheal, astringent and healing properties. The strawberry was included among the anti-aging super foods in the ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) ranking drawn up by the US Department of Agriculture, for the high content of antioxidants, such as flavonoids, vitamin C, ellagic acid.

The nutrients present in this fruit awaken the metabolism, assist the slimming processes thanks to the ability to develop the production in the body of a hormone, adiponectin, able to reduce appetite, decrease the absorption of starches and support the metabolism.

The highly concentrated vitamin C in strawberries stimulates the production of collagen, which is useful for preventing the formation of wrinkles, helps strengthen capillaries and stimulate microcirculation with a reduction in water retention, also assisted by the presence of potassium. Strawberries also contain xylitol, a substance that prevents the formation of gum plaque and suppresses germs that could cause bad breath problems.

Side effects

Strawberries can represent an allergenic food. Both for the pigment of its juice that can cause skin rashes, inflammation of the oral mucosa, and for the presence of achenes that can cause urticaria. Although the allergen is attributable to Fragaria allergen 1, a protein also common to apple and birch that induces allergic effects.

Strawberry cultivation

Strawberry cultivation is increasingly widespread and increasingly innovative techniques are being developed to protect the plant and make it expand in the most free and luxuriant way possible. Lately there is a wide spread of suspension cultivation.

Plants are generally reproduced not by sowing but by transplanting parts of branches that develop roots. The crops can be annual or perennial through the cutting and re-grafting of the "children" of the original plant. The cultivation of strawberries requires the use of fertilizers, such as nitrogen, phosphorus or potassium, to be applied at the end of the production cycle, and before the start of the next. The strawberry plant can be easily attacked by snails, fruit flies, moths, mites, aphids and fungal diseases such as rust, mold.

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