You want to take the little red berry?
… Unlike the red pill/blue pill in the classic film, The Matrix, the blueberry also has loads of benefits. But today we’re focusing on the incredible health benefits of the little red Goji berry, how to grow them, and use them in cooking!
Related Trivia: In case you’re wondering, it’s the little red pill that allows Neo to see the truth, aka: The Matrix of Life.
Growing Goji Berries and Why You’ll Want to
Goji berries are a Tibetan berry that have been used medicinally by Tibetans for at least 1,700 years.
Pure Healing Foods states that: “The Tibetans used Goji berries for a whole slew of problems ranging from kidney failure, cleansing the blood, eye problems, skin rashes, psoriasis, and depression.” That list is only a few of the benefits of the tiny red berry.
GOJI BERRIES are a power packed superfood.
We’re growing Goji berries at our Pilot Mountain, NC, property after learning more about their many benefits. They’ve done well, so we’ll be adding some more.
Eaten raw, goji berries have a sweet and slightly tangy flavor when eaten straight from the plant. If you eat them dried they are a bit hard and very chewy with a concentrated tart with a hint of sweet, or soften them by a little soak in water.
I find they’re a bit like healthy Sweet Tarts.
You can get dried Goji Berries on Amazon, as well as Goji plants, or check with your local nursery. We enjoy them in homemade nut mix for a healthy energy boost balanced with protein and healthy fats.
Growing Goji Berries for Health Benefits
From Pure Healing Foods1)http://www.purehealingfoods.com/gojiInfo.php
Goji Berries are a rich source of both selenium and germanium and have been used in a number of clinical trials involving cancer patients. When given to patients undergoing chemotherapy, the berries conferred significant protection for the liver.
In Oriental medicine, goji berries are said to correct chi deficiency. To fix chi deficiency means that for people with low energy, insomnia, heart palpitations, and even anxiety are more comfortable after consuming goji berries.
Goji berries are high in essential fatty acids, the healthy omegas, which are required for the body’s production of hormones and the smooth functioning of the brain and nervous systems. In particular, goji berries are high in linoleic acid.
Goji Berries Are Rich In:
- Essential fatty acids
- Linoleic acid
- Antioxidants – carotenoid zeaxanthin
- Unique molecules – polysaccharides
Goji Berries are Beneficial for:
- Liver protection
- Balancing hormones
- Brain function
- Nervous system
- Eye retina
- Immune system
- Stimulating the pituitary gland
- Producing more Human Growth Hormone (HGH)
- Muscle development
- Skin elasticity
Goji berries are rich in antioxidants, particularly carotenoids like zeaxanthin. One of zeaxanthin’s key roles is to protect the retina of the eye by absorbing blue light and acting as an antioxidant. Increased intake of foods containing zeaxanthin may decrease the risk of developing age-related macular degeneration (AMD), the leading cause of vision loss and blindness in people over the age of 65.
Immune System & Anti-Aging
Goji berries are known to have unique polysaccharides known as “Master Molecules” which work together to fortify the immune system, and are not found in any other known plant. Then polysaccharides also stimulates the pituitary gland in the anterior of the brain to produce more Human Growth Hormone (HGH), the master hormone in our bodies responsible for muscle development and skin elasticity, amongst other benefits. Exercise and sleep also stimulate HGH.
You can find Goji Berries on Amazon. They’re pricey, so all the more reason to grow your own!
HGH is known to slow down, and even reverse some of the effects of aging. For centuries, people in Asia that have customarily eaten Goji berries have been documented to live longer and healthier lives with little or no incidence of heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, anti-aging skin care, cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, fibromyalgia, lupus, multiple sclerosis, or a host of other “dread” diseases that are afflicting many of the Industrialized Nations of the world.
If you’re enjoying learning about goji berries, you may also enjoy Anthony Spates’ book on Amazon: The Healing Kitchen, by Holly Belle Buono
Do you know the folkloric name for Goji Berries?
Goji berries, or wolfberries as they are sometimes called, are easy to grow. They are hardy to USDA zone 3 which means you can grow them in most of the US. They are drought tolerant, container adaptable, and tolerant of partial shade.
We’re really enjoying growing and harvesting more Goji berries during this next gardening season, and will post photos of our garden ventures on the Gardens All Facebook Page 2)https://www.facebook.com/gardensall/.
We hope you share your garden finds and favorites with us as well! 🙂 Meanwhile, you may enjoy trying some goji recipes.
Next up: some Goji Berry recipes!
Goji Berry Recipes
So now that we know how to grow the nutrient-packed Goji’s, how do you use them?
You can eat them raw, fresh-picked from the plant. We enjoy them in serving of organic yogurt. Our favorite organic yogurts are: Maple Farms Organic Plain and Chobani Greek it’s like a bowl of probiotics (from the yogurt) with amino acids and everything else the berries provide!
We also make our own yogurt using this yogurt maker, but we’ve got this Greek Yogurt Maker on our wish list. Please let us know if you’ve tried it. We really like that it makes a larger batch in one container versus the numerous single serving containers. But for packing homemade lunches for school and work, the single serving work great as the containers come with plastic lids, ready to go. So, top them with gojis and you’ve got a great and healthy snack that’s super economical.
Here are a few other ways to incorporate goji berries into your diet!
Super Berry Nut Mix
- 1 cup Almonds raw, unsalted
- 1 cup Cashews, roasted, unsalted
- 1 cup Hazelnuts aka Filberts, raw, unsalted
- 1 cup Macadamia Nuts raw, unsalted
- 1 cup Peanuts roasted, unsalted
- 2 cups Pecans raw, unsalted
- 2 cups Walnuts raw, unsalted
- 1 cup Raisins organic
- 1 cup Goji berries dried, unsweetened
- 1 cup Blueberries, dried, unsweetened dried, unsweetened
- 1 cup Golden Berries dried, unsweetened
- 1 cup Mulberries dried, unsweetened
Full directions and nutritional info can be found on MyTrainerFitness.com. 3)http://mytrainerfitness.com/recipe/super-nut-berry-mix/
Banana, Date and Goji Berry Bliss Balls
For Directions Go to source of this Recipe : Lisa Lane Wellness 4)http://www.lisalanewellness.com/nutrition/banana-date-and-goji-berry-bliss-balls/
Power Breakfast Granola Recipe
- 1 cup roasted hazelnuts, roughly chopped
- 1 cup roasted cashews, roughly chopped (substitute peanuts, pecans or sunflower seeds)
- 1 cup old-fashioned oatmeal
- 1/2 cup sliced or slivered almonds
- 1/2 cup unsweetened, shredded coconut
- 3 tablespoons coconut oil
- 2 tablespoons honey (or substitute: 1 Tbsp Stevia, 1 Tbsp Flax Meal or Seeds, + 1 Tbsp Coconut milk or Nut milk)
- (Stir Stevia, Flax & Milk together)
- 1/2 cup goji berries (optional)
- 1 Tbsp Chia Seeds
Lemon Poppyseed Bread with Goji Berries:
- 1 1/2 cups Almond flour sifted
- 1/2 cup coconut flour sifted
- 1 tsp Baking soda
- 1/4 tsp Salt
- 4 eggs
- 1/3 c Raw honey
- 1/2 cup Coconut oil or butter
- 2 peels Lemon zest
- 3 tbsp Lemon juice
- 1/2 cup Goji berries soaked in warm water, 5 mins
- 1 tbsp Poppyseeds
And of course… let us know your thoughts, questions, and tips on Goji Berries in the comments or join the convo over on Facebook!
Now… go get your gojis on! ?
References [ + ]