The Hemp Connection + power

Not all antioxidant superfoods come from exotic places…meet the Prairie Berry!

We seem to have this mentality that if it's an antioxidant worth our attention, that it had to come from a faraway place. If it wasn't handpicked by a silent monk, or floated miles down a rainforest river, it couldn't possibly be good, right?

I've never believed that. Mother Nature is far smarter, and it always seemed to me that she'd be sure to put antioxidant gifts in many places. I recently blogged about purple corn, which grows at altitude in Peru, where there is a need for extra protection from the sun's radiation. But closer to home, we have resveratrol in California grapes. Even here in the Southwest, we have hibiscus, also rich in anthcyanins. (For that reason, I've come to call it the Mexican blueberry!)

My theory was further strengthened at the Natural Products Expo, where I learned about a gem from the plains of Saskatchewan. Originally known as Saskatoon berries, and now being marketed as Prairie Berries, these Canadian fruits have a higher oxygen radical absorbence capacity (ORAC) score than blueberries, the fruit most often making the top ten lists of foods you should have on a regular basis.

Prairie berries have been eaten for generations by Native Americans and early settlers. They were often pounded into dried meat to make pemmican, which is similar to beef jerky.

Prairie berries are very similar to blueberries in taste. We were able to try the dried as well as thawed frozen berries. I really liked the flavor.

These berries are not widely available as I write this. The representatives we met were at the Expo to generate interest in them as a food ingredient. They do have a few products for sale on their website. I'm hoping that future Expos will be showcasing food bars, granolas, trail mixes, etc., using these North American superfruits.

Remember, an antioxidant doesn't hold its power based on how many miles it had to travel to get to you. It's about what it does to those free radicals!

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Not all antioxidant superfoods come from exotic places…meet the Prairie Berry! + power