1. Strawberries can slash LDL levels

    A berry good way to control cholesterol

    If you want proof of God, look no further than the humble strawberry.

    Plucked right out of the garden, it's pretty much perfect -- far tastier than anything the junk industry's mad scientists can cook up. And while junk foods are loaded with life-ruining chemicals, strawberries are overflowing with life-giving, disease-fighting antioxidants.

    It's a sure sign that the man upstairs not only wants us to be healthy, but to enjoy every minute of it.

    Now, new research confirms just one of the many ways strawberries can improve your health: eat them regularly, and you could see your levels of LDL cholesterol (bad)l fall by as much as 13 percent and your triglycerides plunge by a whopping 20 percent in just one month.

    If a new pharmaceutical could cut triglycerides by 20 percent, you can bet it would be marketed as the next great "wonder drug" no matter what kind of awful side effects it came with.

    Strawberries, on the other hand, can do it naturally and with no side effects at all other than maybe a fight for the last one in the bowl.

    The one downside to the study is that the patients who took part ate a lot of strawberries. They were given more than a pound a day, and that's a habit that could get expensive fast, especially if you prefer organic strawberries.

    But you don't have to buy a berry farm or eat the things until you turn red to get the benefits of strawberries, because other studies have found that strawberries can help in much more reasonable amounts.

    More importantly, these other studies show that strawberries don't simply reduce LDL cholesterol (which, despite what you've heard, is actually essential in certain amounts) -- they can actually cut the most damaging form of cholesterol, oxidized LDL.

    One study found that a daily dose of strawberries can cut spikes in oxidized LDL cholesterol by 115 percent, and all you need is two-thirds of a cup a day.

    Strawberries of course are just one example of a basic food plucked right from nature that can help control cholesterol. Apples, too, can also do the trick -- and you can get the details on that in this free report from my House Calls archives.

    Forget the statins. Make some fruit salad instead.

  2. Berries boost your brain

    The only downside of berries is the cost: My local supermarket was selling blueberries for $4.99 a pint the other day.


    But while the price might sting, it's worth a little pain in the wallet to get your hands on some -- because ounce for ounce, berries are unmatched by anything else in the produce aisle.

    I'm sure you already know about the famous antioxidants in berries, which can help protect you from the free radicals that are always trying to undermine your body.

    And now, a new review of the research shows how berries can actually supercharge your brain and improve the way your neurons communicate. That adds up to better motor control and cognition and lower levels of dangerous inflammation -- all from a handful of delicious blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, or cranberries.

    Grapes and blueberries in particular have been proven in studies to help improve the brain function in seniors, especially those already suffering from some impairment, according to the review published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.

    Of course, none of this is all that new or surprising (it's a review of existing research, after all). An earlier study, for example, found that the polyphenolics in berries help the cells that clean up and recycle the toxic proteins that accumulate in the brain with age.

    If that's not a good enough reason to boost your berry intake, consider this: Another new study shows that blueberries -- along with apples -- can slash your risk of diabetes.

    Researchers say people who eat two or more servings of blueberries a week -- as well as those who eat five apples a week -- have a 23 percent lower risk of type 2 diabetes.

    This was based on a food frequency questionnaire, and we know they're not exactly the most reliable form of research... so let's not get too excited.

    But plenty of other more reliable studies back the benefits of berries. And that's especially true of blueberries, which are so rich in nutrients they're a superfood in a class of their own.

    For all that, $4.99 a pint is a bargain -- because these little beauties are worth their weight in gold.

  3. Apples top pesticide list

    I know it feels like summer has only just begun, but fall is right around the corner -- and that means apple season is almost here. Don't be fooled by the apples you'll find in the supermarket year 'round -- most of them are actually months old... and you won't believe the tricks they use to keep them fresh.
  4. Berries cut hypertension risk

    It's not often you find something super-sweet that's also super-good for you... so consider this permission to indulge in delicious berries.

4 Item(s)