Goji Berries

 

 

Have you been wondering about the health benefits of goji berries and goji juice? Some claim that the goji berry is a fountain of youth.

But does it really live up to those claims? And do dried goji berries have side effects? Here are answers to your questions.

What Is a Goji Berry?

The goji berry, also called the wolfberry, is a bright orange-red berry that comes from a shrub that's native to China. In Asia, goji berries have been eaten for generations in the hope of living longer.

Over time, people have used goji berries to try to treat many common health problems like diabetes, high blood pressure, fever, and age-related eye problems. Goji berries, which some brand a “superfood,” are eaten raw, cooked, or dried (like raisins) and are used in herbal teas, juices, wines, and medicines.

Health Benefits of Goji Berries

Goji berries are rich in nutrients. Some early studies using goji berry juice found possible benefits that included:

  • A feeling of well-being and calmness
  • Better athletic performance
  • Better sleep
  • Weight loss
  • A boost to your immune system
  • Higher antioxidant levels

Many berries are good for you. It's not clear whether goji berries are better than other types of berries or if goji berry supplements would have the same health benefits as the berries themselves.

Goji Berry Nutrition

Goji berries offer plenty of vitamins and minerals such as:

  • Vitamin C
  • Fiber
  • Iron
  • Vitamin A

They’re also a good source of protein and antioxidants.

Goji Berry Risks and Side Effects

Goji berries could interact with some drugs. If you take warfarin (a blood thinner), you may want to avoid them. Goji berries may also interact with diabetes drugs and blood pressure drugs, so talk with your doctor first.

Otherwise, it's probably safe to eat goji berries in moderation.

Check with your doctor before taking any diet supplements.

Goji Berry Uses

There are many ways to get goji berries into your diet:

  • Eat them raw.
  • Use them in cooking.
  • Drink goji fruit juice.
  • Take a goji supplement.
  • Use them in an herbal tea.
WebMD Medical Reference Reviewed by Neha Pathak, MD on September 21, 2020

Sources

SOURCES:

Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database: "Lycium (Goji): Monograph."

Natural Standard: "Professional Monograph: Goji (Lycium spp.)"

MedlinePlus: “Goji.”

Optometry and vision science: “Goji berry effects on macular characteristics and plasma antioxidant levels.”

The World Journal of Men’s Health: “Administration of Goji (Lycium chinense Mill.) Extracts Improves Erectile Function in Old Aged Rat Model.”

FoodData Central: “Goji Berries.”

Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity: “Goji Berries as a Potential Natural Antioxidant Medicine: An Insight into Their Molecular Mechanisms of Action.”

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