Goji berries grow on an evergreen shrub found in temperate and subtropical regions in China, Mongolia and in the Himalayas in Tibet. They are in the nightshade (Solonaceae) family. Goji berries are usually found dried; they are shriveled red berries that look much like red raisins. They taste like a mix between cherries and cranberries. Goji berries (also called wolfberries) have been used for 6,000 years by herbalists in China, Tibet and India to protect the liver, help eyesight, improve sexual function and fertility, boost immune function, improve circulation, and promote longevity.
Nutrition: Goji berries are rich in antioxidants, particularly carotenoids such as beta-carotene and zeaxanthin. A one-ounce serving of goji berries contains 140% of your RDA for Vitamin A, and 20% RDA for Vitamin C. There have been several test tube studies that show that goji berry contains antioxidants and that goji extracts may prevent the growth of cancer cells, reduce blood glucose, and lower cholesterol levels. A single goji berry can contain up to 21 trace minerals, including zinc, iron, copper, calcium and 18 different amino acids.
Uses: Try adding goji berries to your smoothies, sprinkle them on cereal, include them in trail mix, or just eat them by the handful!
Dr. Sal’s Thoughts:
I don’t think a day goes by that I don’t use either Acai berries or Goji berries or usually both. Goji berries can be sprinkled in just about anything but often I grind them up or get them in powder form. It adds a lot of nutrition and a sweet but not overwhelming taste. Check out one of my favorite smoothie recipes using Acai and Goji.