Strawberries are Among the Most Popular Fruits

After apples, bananas, oranges, and grapes, strawberries come in as the fifth most popular fruit consumed in the United States. Though they are called berries, strawberries are not classified as berries. Strawberries belong to the rose family as do apples and plums.

In Asia, strawberries are called the “Queen of Fruits” because of the many health benefits they provide. High in fiber, strawberries promote weight loss. Containing appreciable amounts of vitamin K, potassium, and magnesium, strawberries help to improve bone health. The lowering of cardiovascular disease, and reduction of inflammation within the body are other noteworthy health benefits from eating strawberries.

However, a word of caution is in order.  The Environmental Working Group, the EWG, a non-profit, non-partisan organization which acts as a “watch-dog” to protect human health and the environment reported that “strawberries tested by scientists at the U.S. Department of Agriculture in 2014 and 2015 contained an average of 7.7 different pesticides per sample, compared to 2.3 pesticides per sample for all other produce.” Further more, “strawberry growers use jaw-dropping volumes of poisonous gases—some developed for chemical warfare but now banned by the Geneva Convention—to sterilize their fields before planting, killing every pest, weed and other living thing in the soil.” Because of these facts, strawberries are at the top of the “Dirty Dozen Foods”  list compiled by EWG.

Diana Herrington, author of Eating Green and Lean and head chef at Real Food for Life says,  “If I cannot find or afford organic strawberries I eat another fruit instead.” The flip side is that those who have access to fresh, ripe, organic strawberries, and make Strawberry Ice, will discover the eating is worth the fixing!

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