Adding black grapes to your diet is a simple and delicious way to give yourself a nutritious boost, as they are readily available, inexpensive, and easy to incorporate into your meals.
What are Black Grapes?
Black grapes are one of the varieties of grapes, which include red, white, green, and golden varieties. Black grapes, however, have higher levels of antioxidants than their more colorful cousins, due to a higher concentration of anthocyanins, flavonols, and tannins. For those who eat grapes for their health effects, black grapes are often the preferred variety, although all types of grapes contain some amount of these healthy components. The darker the skin of a grape, the more active ingredients it contains, as many of the nutrients of a grape are found in the skin.
Black grapes are widely available in the Mediterranean region, as well as around the world, and are often used to create wines, desserts, and other fruit dishes, having the same applications as more traditionally colored grapes. Although these dark grapes are slightly less common than red or green varieties, finding the fresh black variety is usually not difficult in countries that import moderate levels of fruit.
Black Grapes Nutrition
The nutritional benefits of black grapes are similar to other forms of this fruit, with some notable differences. Like most other grapes, black grapes contain about 96 calories in each 1-cup serving, as well as 16 grams of carbohydrates. There is less than 1 gram of fiber in that size serving, along with less than 1 gram of fat and no protein. Grapes also contain high levels of vitamin C, A, calcium, and iron. Most importantly, black grapes contain higher-than-average levels of anthocyanins, tannins, and resveratrol, a powerful antioxidant that has many health effects.
The most important health benefits of these grapes include their ability to beautify the skin, protect the heart, improve vision, manage diabetes, strengthen the hair, boost immunity, and ensure a healthy pregnancy, among others. It also has anti-inflammatory benefits.
The high level of resveratrol found inside black grapes, along with the various other antioxidants, makes these tiny fruits very helpful for the skin. The antioxidants can help slow down the aging process, neutralize free radical activity that stimulates wrinkles, and even improve the elasticity of the skin.
Studies have found that eating black grapes, and other fruits that are rich in antioxidants and minerals can help to strengthen your hair, improve the luster of your locks, and even remove inflammation from the scalp that can negatively affect hair follicles.
As per a 2009 study published in the Journal of Nutrition, black grapes have a surprisingly low glycemic index, which means that they don’t have a serious effect on blood sugar levels. This is good news for people with diabetes, or those at high risk of developing that condition, as this can help to prevent the dangerous spikes and drops of glucose and insulin.
Improve Heart Health
Resveratrol continues to surprise researchers with its effects on the body, including in the maintenance of good heart health. It is believed that this particular antioxidant can prevent the buildup of oxidized cholesterol and prevent heart attacks and strokes.
The development of chronic diseases, which includes cancer, is dependent upon the presence of chronic inflammations in the body. Dr. Lisa M Coussens and Dr. Zena Werb, researchers at the Cancer Research Institute and Department of Anatomy (respectively), University of California, US, published a study that stated that inflammation is a critical component of tumor progression. An important polyphenol compound called, resveratrol, found in grapes, has powerful anti-inflammatory properties.
This black variety, in particular, gives a boost to the immune system, thanks to the high vitamin C level, which can increase white blood cell levels.
How to Store Black Grapes?
To begin with, before you store your grapes, you need to choose the right ones namely those that are firm, evenly colored, and still attached to their stems. Once you bring your grapes home, you should refrigerate them in the same bag in which they were sold. Most grapes will last between 3 and 5 days in the refrigerator before they become mushy or discolored. Be sure to wash all grapes before you eat them, or after initially buying them before you store them in your refrigerator. You can read Frozen Grapes: How To Freeze & Enjoy for detailed instructions on how to freeze grapes for longer shelf life.