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All About Maqui Berries
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Maqui berries are native to the country of Chile. Majority of its cultivation takes place in the Patagonian region of chile in the Andes Mountains, which has high altitude climate and temperature. Majority of the berries in the market are grown in either the wilds, or in people’s homes. It is not cultivated on a mass scale.
The benefits of Maqui berries are well attested in historical accounts.
Historically, the Mapuche tribes of the old Incan yore are heavy users of maqui berries. They use it in their rituals, and also as traditional medicine to cure diarrhea, sore throat, birth delivery problems, tumors etc. As per the accounts of the Conquistadors(Spanish musket soldiers on a exploration of South America), these tribe’s warriors never used to have much solid food, but used to have high stamina and endurance in battles, due to maqui drinks prepared in a tribal traditional manner.
The plant grows into a tree 4-5 meters tall. The harvesting season is from December to march, and local families collect the berries either from their own home grow trees or collecting wild berries from the forests.
The plant requires full sunlight, with a slightly acidic soil. Also, it can be planted on used soil and it re-fertilizes it.
The berries are around 4mm to 6mm in diameter and can be eaten fresh. It tastes somewhat similar to blackberries. Hence it is also called Chile wine berry. It is used as an ingredient to prepare the popular fermented chicha beverages of Chile.
Recent research has been shedding light on the properties and the kind of nutrients in the Maqui berries.
Research indicates that Maqui berries have the highest anti-oxidants among all berries. The cousin of maqui called Acai berries comes a distant second when it comes to anti-oxidant levels. Anti-oxidants are those kind of natural substances that remove free radicals from our body. Free radicals react with our body cells and increase oxidation process and the gradual ageing off our body. They are thus responsible for early ageing.
The anti-oxidant level is measured by ORAC(Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) score.
In this case, Maqui berries score a whooping 27,000 as against 16,000 of Acai berries. This makes Maqui berries as the highest source of anti-oxidants among all foods. It scores even more than that of green tea and other anti-oxidants.
There are many, many health benefits of Maqui berries that can’t be written in one sitting. The entire web is littered with articles on it. Below, links are given which will give more information on the benefits of Maqui berries.
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