Goji 500x More Vitamin C Than In Orange

The Magic of Goji Berries and Almonds

Goji Berries are another of nature’s miracle super foods. As John advises, you want to look for the whole berry product as opposed to derivatives like goji juice. Shaped like raisins, you to purchase Goji berries that are bright red in color, never brown. Goji berries have 500 times the concentration of the amount of vitamin C found in oranges. John explains the difference between different sources of vitamin C and why one form works and one does not. Goji berries, like almonds, are an ancient food that was first consumed in China 6,000 years ago and has been cultivated in China for over 600 years. It is very high in anti-oxidants, and like almonds, helps your body fight off free radicals that stimulate the growth of cancers.

Derivation of the Common Name – Goji

Gouqizi or gouqi, the Chinese Mandarin names for goji (“wolfberry”, Lycium barbarum L.), is a red-orange berry of the Solanaceae nightshade family that includes tomato, eggplant, chili pepper and potato.

In vernacular, gouqi (Mandarin pronunciation “goo-chee”), has become “goji”. For at least 2000 years, wolfberry has grown wild in China and used in common recipes and traditional Chinese medicine. Wolfberry derives its name from “wolf-peach” — the tomato, its larger botanical cousin (Solanum lycopersicum), where “lyco”  is Greek for wolf and “persicum” is peach.

Chinese Wolfberry and Liver Health

Food for Liver Health: Dwarfing Milk Thistle Benefits
Your liver is a 24/7, over-achieving, type-A kind of organ! Its many roles include metabolism, detoxification, glycogen storage, plasma protein synthesis, and bile production for proper digestion. It is so vital to your liver health that if necessary, it is capable of regenerating itself from as little as 25 percent of a remaining liver into a whole new liver again. No other organ has this ability.

Free radicals, naturally occurring food toxins, and environmental poisons all tax liver health to an alarming degree. When you see the term, “hepatoprotective,” it is describing something that protects the liver.

Emerging wolfberry research has shown these little berries are almost like liver armor – they are incredibly hepatoprotective!

A nifty, newly discovered wolfberry compound called a cerebrocide has been found to protect the liver from environmental insults. Cerebrosides are a combination of sugar and fat (glycolipids) that in one study protected liver cells from a toxic dry-cleaning chemical better than the well-known liver protectant milk thistle extract.1

Yet another hepatoprotective compound in wolfberry was discovered as recently as 2002: pyrroles. These unusual molecules have a nitrogen atom in their central ring and actually outperformed wolfberry cerebrocides in protecting the liver.2

Both cerebrocides and pyrroles were discovered in Lycium chinense, another wolfberry species and close cousin to Lycium barbarum.

1. Kim SY, et al., “New antihepatotoxic cerebrocide from Lycium chinense fruits,” J Nat Prod. 1997 Mar;60(3):274-6
2. Chin YW, et al., “Hepatoprotective pyrrole derivatives of Lycium chinense fruits,” Bioorg Med Chem Lett. 2003 Jan 6;13(1):79-81.

This text excerpted from “The NingXia Red™ Advantage: Seven Pillars of Health”, Young Living Magazine, Oct-Dec 2005. Reprinted with permission of Young Living Essential Oils, LC, Lehi, UT 84043 U.S.A. No other reprinting without the express written permission of Young Living Essential Oils, LC is allowed.


Dried wolfberries

Wolfberries are almost never found in their fresh form outside of their production regions, and are usually sold in open boxes and small packages in dried form. The amount of desiccation varies in wolfberries: some are soft and somewhat tacky in the manner of raisins, while others may be very hard.

As a food, dried wolfberries are traditionally cooked before consumption. Dried wolfberries are often added to rice congee, as well as used in Chinese tonic soups, in combination with chicken or pork, vegetables, and other herbs such as wild yam, Astragalus membranaceus, Codonopsis pilosula, and licorice root. The berries are also boiled as an herbal tea, often along with chrysanthemum flowers and/or red jujubes, or with tea, particularly pu-erh tea, [ citation needed] and packaged teas are also available.

Various wines containing wolfberries (called g uq ji ; ) are also produced,[25] [26] including some that are a blend of grape wine and wolfberries.

At least one Chinese company also produces wolfberry beer, and New Belgium Brewery makes their seasonal Springboard ale with wolfberries used as flavoring. Since the early 21st century, an instant coffee product containing wolfberry extract has been produced in China.

Young wolfberry shoots and leaves are also grown commercially as a leaf vegetable photo recipe

Marketing literature for wolfberry products including several “goji juices” suggest that wolfberry polysaccharides have extensive biological effects and health benefits, although none of these claims have been supported by peer-reviewed research.

A May 2008 clinical study published by the peer-reviewed Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine indicated that parametric data, including body weight, did not show significant differences between subjects receiving Lycium barbarum berry juice and subjects receiving the placebo; the study concluded that subjective measures of health were improved and suggested further research in humans was necessary.[27]

Published studies have also reported possible medicinal benefits of Lycium barbarum, especially due to its antioxidant properties,[28] including potential benefits against cardiovascular and inflammatory diseases,[29] [30] vision-related diseases[31] (such as age-related macular degeneration and glaucoma[32]), having neuroprotective properties[33] or as an anticancer [34] and immunomodulatory agent.[35]

Wolfberry leaves may be used to make tea[36], together with Lycium root bark (called dìg pí; in Chinese), for traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). A glucopyranoside and phenolic amides isolated from wolfberry root bark have inhibitory activity in vitro against human pathogenic bacteria and fungi.[37] [38]

Safety issues
Two published case reports described elderly women who experienced increased bleeding, expressed as an elevated INR, after drinking quantities of wolfberry tea.[39] [40] Further in vitro testing revealed that the tea inhibited warfarin metabolism, providing evidence for possible interaction between warfarin and undefined wolfberry phytochemicals.[39]

Atropine, a toxic alkaloid found in other members of the Solanaceae family, occurs naturally in wolfberry fruit. The atropine concentrations of berries from China and Thailand are variable, with a maximum content of 19 ppb, below the likely toxic amount.[41]

Nutrient content

Wolfberry contains significant percentages of a day’s macronutrient needs – carbohydrates, protein, fat and dietary fiber. 68% of the mass of dried wolfberries exists as carbohydrate, 12% as protein, and 10% each as fiber and fat, giving a total caloric value in a 100 gram serving of 370 (kilo) calories.[42] [ unreliable source?]
Micronutrients and phytochemicals
Wolfberries contain many nutrients and phytochemicals[42] [ unreliable source?] including
Select examples given below are for 100 grams of dried berries. Other nutrient data are presented in two reference texts[42] [ unreliable source?]
  • Calcium. Wolfberries contain 112 mg per 100 gram serving, providing about 8-10% of the Dietary Reference Intake (DRI).
  • Potassium. Wolfberries contain 1,132 mg per 100 grams dried fruit, giving about 24% of the DRI.
  • Iron. Wolfberries have 9 mg iron per 100 grams (100% DRI).
  • Zinc. 2 mg per 100 grams dried fruit (18% DRI).
  • Selenium. 100 grams of dried wolfberries contain 50 micrograms (91% DRI)
  • Riboflavin (vitamin B2). At 1.3 mg, 100 grams of dried wolfberries provide 100% of DRI.
  • Vitamin C. Vitamin C content in dried wolfberries has a wide range (from different sources [ citation needed]) from 29 mg per 100 grams to as high as 148 mg per 100 grams (respectively, 32% and 163% DRI).
Wolfberries also contain numerous phytochemicals[42] [ unreliable source?] for which there are no established DRI values. Examples:
  • Beta-carotene: 7 mg per 100 grams dried fruit.
  • Zeaxanthin. Reported values for zeaxanthin content in dried wolfberries vary considerably, from 2.4 mg per 100 grams [43] to 82.4 mg per 100 grams [44] to 200 mg per 100 grams[45]. The higher values would make wolfberry one of the richest edible plant sources known for zeaxanthin content.[46] Up to 77% of total carotenoids present in wolfberry exist as zeaxanthin.[47]
  • Polysaccharides. Polysaccharides are a major constituent of wolfberries, representing up to 31% of pulp weight.

Wolfberry polysaccharides

One study[48] published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology found that:

published in the found that:

  • Endogenous lipid peroxidation, and decreased antioxidant activities, as assessed by superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px) and total antioxidant capacity (TAOC), and immune function were observed in aged mice and restored to normal levels in Lycium polysaccharide-treated groups. Antioxidant activities of Lycium barbarum polysaccharides were found to be compable with normal antioxidant, vitamin C. Furthemore, adding vitamin C to the polysaccharide treatment further increased in vivo antioxidant activity of the polysaccharides[48] .

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