Star of spring and summer fruits, the strawberry is the champion of vitamin C. But it is also a good source of vitamin B9 and one of the most antioxidant fruits that can be consumed. Discover all the good reasons to eat strawberries with Gilles Dreux, dietitian and dietetic manager of the Thalazur Carnac center and Véronique Liesse, dietitian.
Gariguette, Charlotte or Mara des Bois, strawberries are not only delicious, they are also a real health food. From the Neolithic, the strawberry grows wild in America, Asia and Europe. It owes its name Fragaria vesca to its fragrance, much appreciated by the Romans. In France, it interferes in vegetable gardens from the Middle Ages. The gardener Jean-Baptiste de La Quintinie gives it a special place in the garden of the Sun King. From the 18th century, hybrid varieties, larger, resulting from marriages with strawberries from America, are emerging.
One of the fruits richest in vitamin C
We don’t always know it, but the strawberry is one of the fruits richest in vitamin C, it contains more than the orange and a serving of 100 g covers more than half of our recommended daily allowance. “It also contains ellagic acid, such as pomegranate, which has a preventive action against cancer and which has a recognized effect on the quality of the skin, says dietician Véronique Liesse. Its red color is due to anthocyanins which, in addition to their antioxidant properties, have a prebiotic effect and nourish the intestinal microbiota.
Mention may also be made of the presence of quercetin, a flavonoid with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. “ All these antioxidants act in synergy and potentiate each other. Other advantages of the strawberry: its small caloric contribution and its low sugar level (6 g against 11 g for fruits on average).
The 4 star varieties
- The Gariguette. It is the best known (73% of French people know it) and one of the most popular. This beautiful, elongated vermilion red strawberry offers, from March to June, a tender flesh and sweet-tart aromas.
- La Ciflorette. This red-orange and elongated strawberry is cultivated in the south of France from March to July. It is one of the most delicious, with a fine and juicy flesh that releases very sweet aromas.
- The Charlotte. We recognize the beautiful by its heart shape and its bright red color. A repeatable variety, it is present on the stalls until the end of summer. Both juicy and sweet, it’s a children’s favorite.
- La Mara des bois. We cannot trust the slightly lighter red color, it is very fragrant and aromatic. It’s hard to resist its wild scent of wild strawberries. We enjoy it from June to September.
To choose it well, we do not trust its size or the intensity of its red. On the other hand, it must be of a uniform color, with a very green collar and above all give off a pleasant scent! It must be handled with delicacy: the tray is placed on the top of the basket, it is simply rinsed under a trickle of cold water and it is stalked at the last moment.
“It’s better if it has been produced locally: it has not traveled too much and has been picked when ripe, which guarantees more flavor”, specifies our expert. However, the tastier a strawberry, the less sugar it needs. Because it is not a question of drowning its benefits under sugar or whipped cream! We also avoid heating it so as not to destroy its vitamin C. In salads, a little chopped mint or, more original, basil, enhances its fragrance.
In video: the strawberry soup recipe
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