The 4 Healthiest Fruits of Summer

Healthiest Fruits of Summer

Did you know that it’s best to eat fruits when they are in their ripened state? Most fruits are only in season for certain times of the year. Here are the A, B, and C’s to a eating and enjoying a fun and fruity summer!

These four fruits of summer are all shades of red, but provide an array of nutritional benefits and tastes to satisfy your sweet tooth—in a healthy way!

#1 Cherries
Although they are small, Cherries come in sweet or sour flavors. Unfortunately fresh cherries only come around for a short period of time. So get them while you can! Cherries are a sensitive fruit—be sure to check for mold and mind the pits!

What’s Inside: Cherries are powerful red drops of antioxidants and anthocyanidins, which boost the immune system, and quercetin, which regulates blood pressure. They also contain lots of fiber, potassium, and vitamins A and C.

How to Eat: You can eat them fresh, dried, canned, or frozen.

Store Them Right: Wash and keep them in the fridge as soon as possible.

#2 Peaches/Nectarines
The great thing about peaches and nectarines is their versatility. Eat in their raw form by themselves, on top of yogurt or cereal, include in a pie or tart, or add to a salad or side dish, dried, or canned.

What’s Inside: Also known as nature’s candy, they are loaded with natural sources of vitamins A, C, potassium, antioxidants, beta-carotene, and flavonoids, all which slow the aging process and reduce cancer and heart disease.

How To Eat: Choose ones that are firm and slightly soft when gently pressed, but not too soft. Some have a natural red or pink coloring, which is a type of variety, not ripeness. Avoid anything that is too green, they won’t ripen right.

Store Them Right: If you want to speed up the ripening stage, place them on the counter at room temperature. Once ripe, keep in the refrigerator and eat within one week.

#3 Raspberries
This edgy berry is packed with a punch of sweet and sour flavors that can absolutely melt in your mouth.

What’s Inside: Raspberries have an excellent amount of fiber, which includes a rare component of pectin, which lowers cholesterol. Vitamin C and anthocyanins contribute to their deep maroon shade.

How To Eat: Choose the brightest fruits, as raspberries do not continue to ripen once picked. If hulls are still attached, do not choose them because they were picked too early and will be too sour to eat. As with all berries, be sure to thoroughly check for mold or rotting.

Store Them Right: Raspberries are extremely fragile and perishable. Store them in the fridge right away and eat them within two days. To wash, gently spray with a mist before using. The heavy water faucet could crush or destroy them.

#4 Watermelon
The quintessential summer fruit, a refreshing slice of watermelon will keep you feeling sweet and refreshingly hydrated—in the lightest possible way.

What’s Inside: Surprisingly, watermelon has 40% more of cancer-fighting lycopene than tomatoes. Lycopene in watermelon is also easily absorbed into the body without cooking, unlike tomatoes. It’s also stable when the fruit is stored and refrigerated. Watermelon also has lots of vitamin A and C, B6, beta-carotene, thiamin, and potassium.

How To Eat: The melon should be firm and symmetrical without bruises, cuts, or dents. Look for one that is heavy for its size with a yellow spot on one side to show where it sat on the ground to grow and ripen in the sun. Precut melon should be dense, firm, and moist to the eye.

Store Them Right: Wash a whole watermelon in clean running water to remove surface dirt, and dry. Watermelon temperature should remain constant. If purchased at room temperature, store at room temperature, and vice versa with the fridge.

Although these are some of the best summer super fruits, don’t limit yourself. When it’s summer, the possibilities are endless! Also try these sweet summer fruits:

• Apricots
• Cantaloupe
• Grapes
• Honeydew Melon
• Mango
• Plums
• Strawberries

Get hooked on the fruits of summer! Eat them while you can so you can get that warm summer glow!

Resources:
http://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/features/summer-fruit-frenzy
http://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/features/summer-fruit-guide

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