Goji berries are gaining popularity as a healthy snack. You can find them dried and in juices, and they're even being added to baked goods in certain health food stores. This little berry has long been revered in Asia for it's health benefits and has had great press here in the U.S. Dr. Oz on Oprah touted Goji as one of the nutritional powerhouses available due to its antioxidant effects.
The Goji berry is more than just an anti-oxidant, though. In the lab, researchers discovered that Lycium barbarum (the species of Goji berry with the most health benefits) has 21 trace minerals, 19 amino acids (the building blocks of proteins and enzymes), anti-fungal and anti-bacterial compounds, as well as high levels of vitamin C and the vitamin B-complex. They also found the skins and pulp have a complete spectrum of carotenoids, especially beta-carotene and zeaxanthin which both protect the eyes against blindness and macular degeneration. The seeds contain essential fatty acids and vitamin E.
The effects that people have with Goji though don't seem to be explained by just its nutritional profile, so scientists went back into the lab to find out what the "biologically active" compounds were. They discovered that of all the species of Goji berries, Lycium barbarum had the highest levels of chemicals called bioactive polysaccharides. Don't let the fancy term fool you, a polysaccharide is a many sugared molecule, and the starch found in corn is a polysaccharide (for example). However, these polysaccharides ARE different because at a cellular level, they can have profound changes on the human body.
Bioactive polysaccharides are produced by plants under stress as defense mechanisms. They protect the plant from viruses, bacteria, cell mutations, toxins and other damage. Luckily, when humans eat those plants, the protection passes along to the person too. Because goji berries are grown in extremes of temperature and altitude, the have more polysaccharides than many fruits. The active polysaccharides actually reside in the juice of the berry (they're water soluble).
Master Molecules of HealthThe research shows that Goji's water soluble polysaccharides direct and control communication inside you at a cellular level. These instructions appear to keep the immune system functioning smoothly. The Eastern health philosophy is more prevention oriented than typical Western medicine, and a strongly working immune system is vital to preventing many chronic diseases. It also appears that Goji has alkalizing benefits to the body, and it's been shown that acidity in the blood is a marker of chronic disease.
Let's look at a normal sample of red blood cells. They're round and slightly donut shaped with nice dark centers. This means they have lots of oxygen to give to your tissues. They're spaced out pretty evenly and able to move around freely. That's a good thing!
In a blood sample of a patient who is acidic, see how the red blood cells are stacked on top of each other? This patient is tired, because they don't have good oxygen transport. Their tissues aren't getting nutrients to heal, they aren't getting oxygen, and waste products are having a hard time leaving the cells. Acidity in the blood is one of the leading causes things like arthritis, heart disease and chronic pain.
Because Goji berries are alkalizing in the body, they can help take those stacked and sticky red blood cells and unstack them.
Himalayan Goji Juice Does Research and Proves the Health BenefitsFreelife International, the makers of Himalayan GoChi (the goji juice with the highest level of polysaccharides avaialable) has taken their juice and subjected it to the gold standard of research: double blind, placebo controlled, research studies. The first study, which will be published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, looked at 13 health and well-being effects over a 30 day period. The group drinking GoChi had statistically significant improvements than the control group in the following areas:
- Less Fatigue
- Improved Athletic Performance
- Increased Energy
- Reduction of Stress
- Feeling Calmer
- Increased Ability to Focus
- Sharper Mental Acuity
- Better Quality of Sleep
- Easier Ability to Wake Up
- Feeling Healthier
- Feeling More Content
- Feeling Happier
- Improved Bowel Regularity
In the second study, researchers took healthy adults and randomly divided them into two groups. One group got GoChi and the other got a placebo juice. The GoChi group showed highly significant increases in blood levels of two key antioxidants: Superoxide dismutase - SOD which is the body's primary defense against inflammatory free radicals and Glutathione peroxidase which is important for detoxification. The GoChi group also had less free radical activity.
In the third study, subjects were once again divided in two groups. This time researchers looked at immune system function on a blood level. The GoChi group had statistically significant improvements in white blood cells, IgG (an antibody), and Interleukin 2 (IL-2), molecule that signals the immune system.
By now you should see why I love this product. Of all the juices made from goji berries, Himalayan GoChi is the leader. They guarantee their product (try it for 90 days and if you're not totally happy you can return the empty bottles for a full refund), they subject it to scientific studies and my family and patients have responded very well to it.
If you have arthritis or another chronic condition, give GoChi a try! You can order it from Freelife International. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
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