Health care professionals are constantly preaching to clients and patients about the benefits of eating more fruits and vegetables. Fruits and vegetables have essential vitamins and minerals, phytochemicals, and antioxidants. Berries are often touted as one of the “super foods” because in addition to being loaded with antioxidants and phytochemicals, they are also low in calories, high in fiber, and high in water, which helps control blood sugar and create satiety.
A new study published in Molecular Nutrition and Food Research found another reason to eat more fruit, specifically more blueberries and red grapes. They found that these two fruits contain stillbenoids, which are compounds such as resveratrol in red grapes and pterostilbene in blueberries, which work with Vitamin D to boost immune function. It seems that the combination of these compounds and vitamin D work together to increase the human cathelcidin antimicrobial peptide (CAMP) gene, which has been shown to play a significant role in the body’s first line of defense against bacterial infection. This is critical, especially as our bodies become more resistant to antibiotics.