Looking to get the healthiest bang out of your berry buck? Well, you’re in luck.
A new study has found that the wild Salal Berry is more potent in promoting healthy antioxidants than blueberries, the previous champ.
Salal berries have five times the concentration of tannins and 1.5 times the concentration of anthocyanin when compared to their blue counterpart.
Antioxidants, like tannins and anthocyanin, have been found to reduce the risk of cancer, cardiovascular disease, and neurodegenerative diseases, while also having anti-inflammatory effects.
The study was led by UVic plant biologist, Peter Constabel, and was published in the journal Phytochemistry.
As for why these berries are so jacked up on compounds beneficial to humans, its likely for the berries own defence.
Salal berries don’t get mouldy like other berries and remain on the branch throughout the winter, and Constabel believes this is a result of the high level of tannins, which are antimicrobial.
Salal berries can be found growing in the pacific northwest and were a staple for coastal peoples, who often crushed them for use in fruit leather or cakes.
Unfortunately, the berries are wild, so its unlikely you’ll be able to find them as readily available as blueberries at your local grocery store.