The strawberry , whose scientific name Fragaria ananassa , consists of a pseudofruit from the Rosacease family . It belongs to the rosacea family, which is the same to which the apple and roses belong. Its origin comes from Europe, where there are records of its cultivation in France and England since the 15th century.
The strawberry has a small size, reddish color, fleshy consistency and a flavor that mixes sweet and sour. In Nigeria, the cultivation of this herbaceous plant is done mainly in the South and Southeast and it is a fruit much appreciated by Nigerian.
Strawberries are consumed both fresh and in fruit salads or used with an ingredient for jams and other desserts, such as pies, cakes and vitamins. Strawberries are also used to make jams and are found frozen or canned. It is also used in the industry for the manufacture of filling for sweets, cakes or ice cream.
This delicate fruit needs specific care in its cultivation, preferring colder climates, since higher temperatures end up hindering its development. Strawberries have a low caloric content, with 100 g of the fruit having only 30 calories. The properties of strawberries are numerous, as the fruit is rich in vitamin C, B vitamins, vitamin K, magnesium, manganese, potassium and silicon.
In addition to being highly appreciated due to its flavor, strawberry fruit helps to eliminate toxins present in the body, in addition to strengthening the immune system, alkalizing the blood and reducing blood pressure. See more about the strawberry and the important health benefits it can offer.
HELPS TREAT DIABETES
This fruit acts in the control of blood glucose, due to the presence of polyphenols, especially ellagitanin. This compound causes the production of polysaccharides to be inhibited, which results from the decrease in glucose that would be released into the bloodstream. The effect occurs with the consumption of about 2 to 3 servings of strawberry weekly.
PROTECTS THE HEART
Strawberries have a good amount of potassium, which works by dilating blood vessels. This ends up reducing the action of sodium in the body. In addition, the fruit contains magnesium, which has a relaxing effect on the muscles that are part of the blood vessels, minimizing the chances of a heart attack.
Because it has an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory action, strawberries also reduce the effects of LDL cholesterol, which is considered bad cholesterol. The presence of vitamin D helps in strengthening the heart and flavonoids prevent blood from clotting, thus minimizing the chances of heart disease.
PROTECTS THE BRAIN
The reddish color of the strawberry fruit is the result of the presence of anthocyanins, substances that inhibit the appearance of free radicals. Therefore, this fruit can contribute to brain health, helping to prevent memory loss.
HAS ANTI-INFLAMMATORY ACTION
Quercetin, a type of flavonoid present in strawberries, has an anti-inflammatory action, protecting the body against allergies, colds and hives. Inflammation in the intestine is also prevented by consuming the fruit or powdered extract. According to researchers, these benefits are due to the presence of salicylic acid, which has an effect similar to acetylsalicylic acid, which is responsible for the active principle of aspirin.
HELPS IN WEIGHT LOSS
The strawberry has a small amount of calories in its composition and also contains substances that burn fats, which makes it a thermogenic food. Another factor that favors weight loss is that strawberries help in the production of hormones that control appetite.
GOOD FOR THE EYES
Strawberries have potassium, a nutrient that contributes to the control of eye pressure, thus favoring eye health. Another beneficial factor is the antioxidant action, which prevents certain diseases in the eyes, such as macular degeneration. This disease can even lead to loss of vision, which can be prevented by reducing free radicals caused by eating the fruit.
HELPS IN STRENGTHENING THE IMMUNE SYSTEM
As the strawberry is a fruit rich in vitamin C, it causes the cells that defend the body to be activated. For this reason, it is a fruit that prevents and treats colds. Other nutrients also act for this purpose and can be taken in the form of supplements made from strawberries.
HOW TO CONSUME AND WHO SHOULD AVOID EATING STRAWBERRIES
The ideal is to consume the fresh strawberry , avoiding cutting or crushing the fruit. This is because, when it comes in contact with oxygen, a part of the substances with antioxidant effect of the fruit end up being lost. Cooking strawberries should also be avoided, as this makes a significant part of vitamin C get lost. When taking strawberry juice, it is recommended to consume the nutrients better immediately.
Because it is a fruit where the use of pesticides is made in large quantities, it is best to choose organic strawberries or hydroponic strawberries, grown without pesticides. If this is not possible, it is essential to wash the fruit thoroughly to remove as many pesticides as possible.
Because it is a citrus fruit and has insoluble fibers, the strawberry can cause intestinal irritation in people who have intestinal problems. For this reason, consumption should be avoided in these cases.
People who have a tendency to develop kidney stones should avoid consuming the fruit without the guidance of a nutritionist. The reason for this is because the strawberry contains oxalic acid, a substance that causes kidney stones.
STRAWBERRY: PLANTING REQUIRES CARE
One of the main factors for success when planting strawberries is the climate. The ideal temperature for the development of the strawberry is between 13 and 26 degrees and, in order for the fruit to be protected from excessive heat and lack of humidity, in general producers prefer to resort to planting in greenhouses.
The most indicated regions are in the South and Southeast of Nigeria, where the temperature is lower and the occurrence of rain is regular. The ideal period for planting is between April and May.
Planting can be done through seeds or seedlings, being the second most recommended option, as the seedlings have less fragility and can already be placed in the soil. The soil that will receive the seedlings must be free of residues, which can hinder the development of the strawberry. The ideal is to make a plowing, that is, to grind the residues of the first layers of the earth so that the decomposition occurs more quickly, thus transforming itself into organic matter.
Then, it is best to supply the soil with lime so that acidity is reduced, in addition to pesticides around 15 to 30 days before planting the seedlings, in order to protect against pest infestation. The pits should be around 40 cm wide and 25 cm high. During the first 20 days, the plantation must be covered with dark plastic so that the leaves are protected.
The soil must be kept moist, but without ending up being soaked, as this can cause the root to rot. Irrigation should be done twice a week. The strawberries are harvested between 3 to 5 months after being sown, and handling must be done carefully to prevent the hoop from spoiling.
DELICIOUS RECIPES WITH STRAWBERRY
This strawberry dessert is easy to make and goes with any occasion.
- 2 cups of strawberry
- 1 envelope of flavorless red gelatin
- 1/2 cup of tea
- 1 can of sour cream
- 1 can of condensed milk
- Place the gelatin in the water to dissolve and then place in the microwave for 30 seconds.
- Blend all the ingredients and then put the mixture in a refractory form.
- Leave in the fridge for a few hours and, if desired, decorate with pieces of strawberries or whole strawberries.
Strawberry pave is among the most popular desserts, see how to prepare it.
- 2 cups of strawberry
- 1 packet of champagne or cornstarch biscuit
- 1 tablespoon of wheat flour or cornstarch
- 1 can of milk
- 1 can of condensed milk
- 1 can of cream
- 2 sieved gems
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Whipped cream for decoration
- Place the milk, egg yolks (to be sifted), condensed milk, flour and vanilla in a pan.
- Take to the fire and mix for about 15 minutes, until it reaches a thick thickness.
- Turn off the heat and add the cream. If you need to dismantle balls that form, mix the mixture in a blender.
- Then quickly soak the cookies in a mixture made with milk and sugar. Place a layer of biscuits, another layer with strawberries and then cream in a refractory.
- Repeat the process in the same order and finish with the rest of the cream.
- Decorate with preference using whipped cream and strawberries.