Goji berries (or wolf berries) are the bright orange-red fruit of the native Chinese shrub Lycium barbarum. For thousands of years, these delicious fruits have been used to increase longevity and improve healthiness.
Traditional Chinese medicine practitioners used goji berries to treat diabetes and high blood pressure, as well as to maintain eyesight, liver and kidney function, boost strength, stamina and increased sexual vitality.
In more modern times, goji berries have found another spurt of popularity following research confirming the benefits this superfood berry confers upon your bodily and spiritual wellbeing.
Goji Berries Fight Cancer & Boost Immunity
Being a rich source of Vitamins C and E, goji berries boost immunity that helps your body fight infections and aberrations like cancer. Lycopenes, carotenoids and beta carotene further extend these benefits. Goji berries even contain polyphenols like ellagic acid and flavonoids which have significant health benefits.
Among the most important ingredients of goji berries in a cancer-fighting sense are polysaccharide-protein complexes known as LBPs. These are made up of long chains of alternating molecules of amino acids and sugars, and have potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activity.
As a result, goji berries protect against aging, cancer development and inflammation. The eyes, liver and brain are protected from oxidative stress injury. Taken along with the immunity-boosting effects of this superfood, goji berries can prevent the development of several illnesses.
LBP complexes increase white blood cell activity. These are the body’s police system, fighting against viral and bacterial invaders and keeping your systems safe and in working order. When macrophages, T lymphocytes and natural killer cells become more active, the body’s capacity to protect itself against external attacks is improved.
Some research suggests that LBPs in goji berries actually triggers the destruction of leukaemia cells as well as breat, prostate, colon and liver cancers.
Goji Berries Kickstart Your Metabolism
But the effect of goji berries doesn’t end with just fighting off invasive attacks on your body. It promotes vitality, increases energy levels, and sustains stamina. Studies report that goji berry juice improves digestion, reduces stress and fatigue, and improves well being. This might be linked to the effect goji berries have upon your body’s metabolism.
The Journal of the American College of Nutrition reported in 2011 that drinking an ounce of two of the juice of goji berries speeded up metabolism by 10% compared to control groups. The more juice you drink, the greater this effect.
The faster metabolism burns up more calories, leading to an encouraging loss of weight. In two weeks, study subjects noticed significant lowering of their waist circumferences.
Goji Berries Boost Libido
A surge in the popularity of goji berries as superfoods in recent times parallels a wider awareness about its effect upon sexual activity. For thousands of years, these bitter-sweet berries have been used to enhance sexual performance and fertility.
Goji berries extract can boost sexual desire, improve performance, and enhance sperm quantity. In the laboratory, rats given goji berry juice experienced more sexual interest, with an increased frequency of sex-related activity and ejaculations. This probably accounts for the popularity of goji berries in the bedroom!
How To Eat Goji Berries?
Goji berries, like chia seeds, are available in supermarkets and health food outlets, as whole dried berries, powders or juices. The dried berries are probably best because the anti-oxidant effects are well preserved. A 2-ounce serving contains around 7 grams of protein, and 6 grams of dietary fiber. The powder and juice versions do not have this.
Goji berries are soft and chewy like raisins. You can eat them as a snack, or blend them into juices or soups, smoothies or sauces. Sprinkle them onto cereals and puddings, pop them into salads, or eat them with toast, biscuits or crackers.
Carrot with goji berry soup is a popular favorite, and you’ll find the recipe for this and other delicious superfood recipes with goji berries in our handpicked collection of guides below.