9 Wonderful Benefits of Golden Berries

by John Staughton (BASc, BFA) last updated -

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The most impressive health benefits of golden berries include their ability to help lose weight, detoxify the body, manage diabetes, strengthen the immune system, optimize kidney function, and reduce inflammation. Goldenberries also prevent certain degenerative diseases, boost heart health, and are widely considered to be a superfood loaded with nutrients and antioxidants that can significantly improve your overall health.

What are Golden Berries?

Golden berries, scientifically known as Physalis peruviana, are small yellowish berries that have originated from South America. Oddly enough, goldenberries are more closely related to tomatoes and eggplants than other berries and are approximately the size of a marble. In terms of taste, these berries are sweet, somewhat like a pineapple and a mango.

They have spread to other parts of the world, including South Africa and Europe, and are exported extensively, and hence have many names. Depending on where you are in the world, you may know them by various names, including Cape Gooseberry, Aztec berry, poha, harankash, or Physalis, among a dozen or more other common names.

A white bowl of fresh golden berries and berries on a wooden table

Nutrition Facts

Groundcherries, (cape-gooseberries or poha), raw
Serving Size :
Water [g]85.4
Energy [kcal]53
Protein [g]1.9
Total lipid (fat) [g]0.7
Carbohydrate, by difference [g]11.2
Calcium, Ca [mg]9
Iron, Fe [mg]1
Phosphorus, P [mg]40
Vitamin C, total ascorbic acid [mg]11
Thiamin [mg]0.11
Riboflavin [mg]0.04
Niacin [mg]2.8
Vitamin B-12 [µg]0
Vitamin A, RAE [µg]36
Vitamin A, IU [IU]720
Fatty acids, total trans [g]0
Cholesterol [mg]0
Sources include : USDA

Nutrition Facts

These super berries contain low levels of calories and moderate levels of most vitamins and minerals; however, the real value of this fruit is the concentration of antioxidants. Polyphenols and carotenoids are powerful elements of human health, and golden berries contain significant amounts of them. When combined with the other nutrients, these antioxidants make this fruit very desirable, which explains its widespread use and demand across the world.

How to eat Golden Berries

Golden berry is sweet and tart, which makes it a popular ingredient in various cakes, sweets, and baked goods, as well as salads and fruit salads. Other simple ways to enjoy it are listed below.

  • The berries can also be eaten by themselves, fresh or dried, as a healthy snack
  • You can add goldenberry to your salads for a flavorful boost
  • Blend the berries in your morning smoothie for natural sweetness
  • You can top your yogurt with fresh or dried golden berries
  • Dip the berries into the chocolate sauce for a dessert

Health Benefits of Golden berries

Goldenberries have many benefits for health. So, let’s take a closer look at some of them in detail.

Antioxidant Content

According to Dr. Gökçen Yıldız, Nazmi İzli et al’s report published in the Journal of Food Science Technology, the most important benefits of golden berries are derived from their high antioxidant content, which makes them an ideal nutritional supplement for all kinds of ailments. Like the carotenoids and polyphenolic compounds, antioxidants found in goldenberries can neutralize free radicals, the damaging by-products of cellular metabolism that can cause healthy cells to mutate into cancerous ones. This is the quality that makes golden berries a “superfood”. Research has shown that polyphenols can stop the spread of various types of cancers, making it a very important food source in many parts of the world.

Anti-inflammatory Properties

Golden berries are rich in antioxidants that help in reducing inflammation. If you suffer from arthritis, gout, muscle aches, chronic pain, or even hemorrhoids, anti-inflammatory compounds in the berries can soothe these conditions and improve overall health. Goldenberries improve heart health by lowering inflammation of the arteries and blood vessels and preventing the development of atherosclerosis and coronary heart diseases. This effectively lowers blood pressure as well, which further decreases the symptoms of hypertension and gives relief to your heart.

Weight Loss

As a low-calorie food (only 53 calories per 100 grams), golden berries are an interesting option for people trying to lose weight. These tiny fruits deliver a large percentage of your daily nutrients, yet do not contribute any negative fats or calories to your overall intake, helping to keep your weight loss goals on track!

Cholesterol Balance

Although many people think of fats as a negative component, in reality, humans need a variety of essential fatty acids for the proper functioning of many processes in the body. For example, the oleic and linoleic acid in golden berries lower the amount of LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol) in our body and re-establish the cholesterol balance to ensure a healthy heart.

Cancer Prevention

You don’t often hear about withanolides in health food discussions, as they are quite rare, but they are found in golden berries. These unique organic compounds, similar to those found in ginseng, are powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agents that can induce apoptosis or automatic cell death. They can also slow down or even reverse the spread of cancerous cells throughout the body, according to a research paper published in the Cancer Letters Journal by a team of Taiwanese researchers.

Diabetes Management

Some of the compounds found in golden berries can slow the breakdown and intake of simple sugars from carbohydrates. This means that the body and bloodstream are not flooded with sugar, and insulin receptors are properly regulated. Drastic blood sugar fluctuations are the main cause of diabetes and can be very dangerous for people suffering from this condition, meaning that golden berries are an effective preventive method and a treatment for Type II diabetes, as per a report published in the Diabetes Foundation.

Improve Liver & Kidney Health

Although the exact pathway for this benefit isn’t completely understood, one of the withanolides found in golden berries has been associated with a reduction in liver scarring and a reversal of liver degradation. Furthermore, golden berries are linked to optimal kidney health as they help to eliminate toxins by stimulating urination and flushing out excess fats, salts, and toxins from the lymphatic system.

Health benefits of golden berries - infographic

Improve Vision

Due to the high carotenoid content found in golden berries, they are often recommended for boosting the health of your eyes. Carotenoids eliminate oxidative stress on the ocular system, preventing the development of cataracts and slowing the onset of macular degeneration, keeping your vision in top working order as you age.

Boost Immunity

The significant level of vitamin C (almost 15% of the daily recommended intake) in a single serving of golden berries makes them a very important fruit for the immune system. Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) stimulates the production of white blood cells and also has certain antioxidant properties. Furthermore, it is a key component in the production of collagen, which helps in repairing and producing cells, tissues, organs, and blood vessels.

Word of Caution: Avoid eating unripe golden berries as that can be poisonous. Also picking wild berries is not recommended. If you suffer from an allergy to other berries, be sure to speak with your doctor before consuming them. As golden berries are more closely related to nightshade plants than cherries or other berries, the allergenic potential is much the same.

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About the Author

John Staughton is a traveling writer, editor, and publisher who earned his English and Integrative Biology degrees from the University of Illinois in Champaign, Urbana (USA). He is the co-founder of a literary journal, Sheriff Nottingham, and calls the most beautiful places in the world his office. On a perpetual journey towards the idea of home, he uses words to educate, inspire, uplift and evolve.

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